Medievia Mudslinger

April 9, 2000

THE RETURN - by Yogar

He stood over the huge hole that gouged into the earth of Medievia, and thought of the day when he was just a small lad who was playing in the forest. He had came upon this very crevice and being a boy of curiousity, he had wandered inside, not knowing of the creatures it contained. That was the first time he had seen it, the Moshata. She stood above him, twice the size of a normal man and over thirty feet long, mud covering what appeared to be her brown fur. Being of such young age, he was petrified of the massive beast, unable to move or speak. The Moshata looked down at him with her large red eyes and saw that his fear was overwhelming him. Suddenly, a swift movement of her claw caught the side of his face and blood flew from the wounds. The boy, pain and panic taking over from the intial shock, ran as fast as he could to get away from this beast and out of its lair.

The man touched his fingertips to his scars remembering how the flesh had been torn from his face. Remembering, also, the years of being an outcast from the town's people because they feared his gruesome and ugly reflection. He was forced to live in the woods because of the pain and torment that the Moshata had inflicted upon him.

Perhaps, it had all been a blessing in a vicious disguise. From years of living in the forest, the forest given him a gift, the gift of magic. The forest had made him into a powerful wizard, and he was going to use these talents for revenge.

The man looked at the hole and had only one thing on his mind, the death of the Moshata. With this thought he climbed down into the darkness. The stench was horrific, that of decaying corpses and rotting flesh. He jumped down off the wall into mud that came up to his knees. He waded down the tunnel with nervous trepidation, but his cold fury and determination outweighed it. Alert to all that was around him, he heard shrews digging behind rocks, and saw pan snakes pressed against the walls. Everything seemed calm while he searched for his prey, until he saw something wiggling in the shadows.

He found a giant earthworm wiggling, trying to burrow back into the depths of Medievia. The worm sensed the man and opened its mouth towards him, attempting to devour him. The man leaped back and raised his hands at the worm releasing a barrage of frost shards into its body. The worm shrieked and tried to slither to escape. However, the man did not choose to grant mercy and, with a quick movement of his staff, the worm was dead. "Pathetic" he said smiling to himself.

He heard some sort of noise behind him, as if some thing was moving in the mud. He spun around to defend himself and he saw mud forming into the shape of a man, his eyes widened and his jaw dropped with shock. Backing into the wall with fright he saw a sword come flying out of the Mud Man's arm into what appeared to be his hand. The Mud Man charged him with with his sword leveled at his head. The man ducked just in time, a second later and he would have been pinned to the wall by the Mud Man's blade. As the Mud Man struggled to free his sword from the wall, the man swung his staff at the back of the Mud Man's head. To his surprise, it went through the head harmlessly. "What kind of sorcery is this?!" he shouted. The Mud Man finally pulled the sword free, and as he did the man sent a massive shockwave directly for his chest. The shockwave connected and the Mud Man was blown apart.

The man sighed with relief at killing the hideous creature. At that very moment four more Mud Men rose from the floor into a circle around him. "This... this can't be happening!" he stammered. He dove between two of them, they reached for him but were just too slow. The man ran as well as he could in the deep mud with the Mud Men on his heels, but after he turned a corner he paused and waited. The Mud Men arrived just to see him raise his hands and send bolts of acid from his finger tips to each one of them - they dissolved into nothingness.

The man had to rest. Resting on a dry area of the floor, he pulled a loaf of bread and a waterskin from his bag. He pressed the waterskin to his lips and drank greedily, the cold, clean water tasted so fresh and good. Hungrier than he expected, he ripped away at the bread savagely with his teeth. Enjoying his meal he sensed something coming down the hall. The man quickly jumped behind a rock to see what dangers awaited him now. A brown furred creature that stood eight foot tall with a jaw that lowered to its waist emerged from the shadows. "Talpidae..." he murmered to himself. The Talpidae could not see well, it kept feeling the walls for it's way and relied only on it's smell and hearing to help it for any other task. Observing this, he picked up a stone and threw it behind the Talpidae. It heard the sound of the rock hitting the wall behind her and swung around to destroy any possible intruder. The man ran at her and tackled her to the ground, quickly rising to his feet. He raised a hand to cast a spell to finish the beast.

"NO! PLEASSSSSE!" she screamed.

"You speak with a human tongue?" he said startled.

"Yessssss...." she sibilantly replied.

"Take me to the Moshata, or you will pay with your life," he demanaded.

She nodded her head, "Very well."

He levitated the Talpidae to her feet and she walked in front of him, with his hand on her back incase of a double-cross. She led him to a large hole that dropped away in darkness, the bottom unseen.

"Here it isssss," she said. "The chamber of my mother."

He walked to the hole and observed it carefully, "How do I get down there?"

"LIKE THISSSS!" and with that she shoved him into the depths of the hole.

For a time he fell, the seconds of weightlessness seeming like forever, until finally he hit the ground, mud splattering everywhere at the impact of his body. He raised his head and checked himself for any injuries, though he had suffered little more than a few bruises. The man heard a hideous laughter from above, "You sssshall die you ignorant fool!" Filled with anger he rose to his feet to see the source of the nightmares he had been suffering for years, the Moshata.

"YOU!" he shouted bursting with rage. The Moshata charged at him at full speed, but he responded automatically by sending a stream of scintillating colors at her, blinding her momentarily. While she was stunned he threw a fireball at her singeing her and setting her fur aflame. She ran around shocked and confused as he lunged at her with his staff and missed.

The flames flickered and died and she went after him, clamping down on his arm hard with her massive teeth. He let out a yell and kicked her savagely. She stepped back, then charged him with claws flailing wildly but he quickly blocked the assault with his staff. The man then jumped to his feet and cast out a tremor which forced the Moshata to the ground.

He staggered over to her stunned body, holding his injured arm with care. Muttering some words, the muscles on his arms became larger and larger, swelling beneath his mud-stained robes. He caught her in one, final gaze before plunging his fist into her chest pulling her beating heart from her body. She let out a final shriek that could be heard all throughout her caverns and tunnels, the echoes muffled quickly by the muddy walls. He let her blood flow down his arm, "The nightmare, is over..."