Saturday, July 30, 2016

Sassy Saturday: Escape from Mt.Heios

Welcome to another week of Sassy Saturday at Trickster Eric Novels.  Every week will be an excerpt from one of my novels showcasing a kick-butt heroine. If you want read about the original blog hop the link is here.

The previous Sassy Saturday post can be read here: Fighting zombies, mages and memories

The context for this post:  Tiza and Nolien along with other allies are attempting to escape Mt.Heios, which is basically a den of corruptive magical energy and really powerful monsters.  On Tvtropes, this sort of situation is what we call "The Godzilla Threshold".


Their destination was Mount Heios, where Tiza, Nolien, and Vaya were running for their lives.

Monsters everywhere were eating each other. They were slashing, biting, smashing, pounding, and melting each other. The tussle between a reaper and a Bladi drove then into a frenzy. Every monster without a meal looked to the small, insignificant-looking creatures and deemed them an easy target.

The fungi that Neuro was thrown into was poisonous to mind, body, and spirit, so he was out of action. Tiza had to carry him on her back. In his current state, he was the lightest of all of them.

Looking around, Tiza scanned the horde for known breeds and quickly guesstimated what they were and what they could do. Large, old, grown strong on a diet of Fog and the mana-drenched meat of others, they ranked as B class monsters. She took stock of her equipment and her allies and possible strategies in a moment. Then she closed her eyes, removed her safety mask, and muttered, “Spider Daylra, all conditions have been met.” The monsters pounced. She opened her eyes and shouted, “Light come forth!”

Suddenly, the monsters halted. Their instincts shouted danger of the creature that multiplied its own power instantly. Tiza's eyes glowed with blue light and her body glowed with a pale blue aura. She blurred past a monster and side-kicked a second to open a path down the mountain.

She deflected a third monster reaching for Vaya and then turned aside a fourth bounding toward Nolien. Her light flickered, but she took a deep breath and renewed it. Then she tossed both her companions over her shoulder and ran down the mountain slope towards the edge of the Fog Cloud.

The monsters followed her. Hideous and misshapen, they chased her relentlessly. It was only by the power of Videlicet Mens that she stayed ahead of them. Only with the greatest effort did she maintain its effect. She took one deep breath after another and each one empowered her to greater heights. They also eroded her health and sanity.

Her hair was matted against her head with sweat. Her body heaved; a feat made dangerous by the thick Fog. No longer taking controlled breaths, the Fog began to pulse erratically within her body. Her skin turned both sickly pale and translucent. Nolien recognized the symptoms, but she did not. She was no longer concerned with them. She was not aware of them. The light of Videlicet Mens blinded her to everything but her goal. She was developing monsanity, the insanity known only to monsters.

As the seconds passed and she grew wearier, the monsters grew closer. They grew close enough for Nolien to count their teeth. A titanic monster stepped into her path, but Tiza jumped ten feet and kicked it in the stomach. Empowered by Videlicet Mens, the Fog, and her fierce determination, she knocked it over and then ran over its face. She jumped off it and continued her sprint uninterrupted all the way out of the Fog Cloud.

On her way down, she tripped and skidded down the slopes. The three people she was carrying tumbled in three directions. She breathed as deep and fast as she could but it was hard, painful, and futile in the thin air of Ceiha. Nolien rushed to her side to begin treatment, then paused when he looked back at the Fog Cloud. The monsters were following them.

They started heaving as he did when he first entered Ceiha's territorial waters. It was slow and clumsy, but they continued stalking forwards. The smallest ones adapted quicker and moved faster. Soon, they would be overrun. Nolien was calculating the odds of running again when he heard something shocking.

Tiza whimpered. Nolien would never forget it. Indomitable Tiza was afraid. His own safety was suddenly less important and saving her became his priority. do I do it...?

You can't do it, Honorable Elder Brother. Give up.

The healer ignored it and made more plans, but it followed him. It pointed out every flaw in every one. He could hear it laughing at him. Admit it. You can't do it.

Tiza flickered like a sputtering candle and, suddenly, it dawned on him. I can't!

“As I am Chaos, you are Order divine. As the sun to the moon, you shall shine. Take my power and me mine!” His slip made his face burn. He swore he could hear The Trickster laughing. “I mean like a leyline! MANA TRANSFER!”

A blue tether shot from his staff to Tiza's back and, instantly, all her fatigue disappeared. Empowered by Nolien, she grabbed the horns of the monster about to gore him and used it as a club to bash, smash, and flatten the last three monsters pursuing them. Then she tossed that one into the air, channeled enough mana to her blade to make it a mana blade, jumped up to the monster's level, and slashed off all its heads before it crashed to the ground, dead. She landed lightly and stood tall. Then other monsters caught up with it.

Unlike the three before, these were bigger than she was. Their spirits were far stronger and, unlike her, they were not exhausted. Instead of fighting them, she retreated. While she could not defeat them, Ceiha itself could. Artfully, she drew them further and further away from the Fog Cloud. One by one, they suffocated on the thin air. The sense of self-preservation in the remaining monsters kicked in and they retreated to the Fog Cloud.

Nolien had never been more in awe of her. Together with the blue dress, she appeared as a sapphire reaper. Then she faced him and he saw a monstrous look in her eyes.

Looming Shadow, and the rest of the Journey to Chaos series, is available for purchase at Amazon

To learn more about the heroines of Journey to Chaos, visit the Tvtropes character sheet. 

The next Sassy Saturday post is Sassing Death Gods

Brian Wilkerson is a freelance book reviewer, writing advice blogger and independent novelist. He studied at the University of Minnesota and came away with bachelor degrees in English Literature and History (Classical Mediterranean Period concentration).




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