Monday, November 25, 2013

Night Serpent

Another day, another post. Welcome to another short story on Iron
Wyvern! Featuring [blank], with several appearances of a [blank] [blank], this short story involves a lot of [blank], and so I'll start it with that.


The room was small and dark, a single window washing the room in a rectangular niche of moonlight. A curved baby crib sat along the wall, a crosshatched maze of hanging toys obscuring the inhabitant. The floor around the crib was strewn with a forest of stuffed toys, all leaning in against the crib’s spindly supports.

       On the window sill, a streak of shadow flickered, an impression of complete blackness that washed over the lighted stone with an unmistakably serpentine movement. Flat against the wall, it ran down the wallpaper like a path of oil, pooling on the floor in a botch of shadow, distinctly visible in the moonlight.

    Plastered to the floor like saturated fur, it slithered out of the moon’s path and into the hazy darkness of the room, winding its way towards the crib by the wall. The intense blackness of the nightmarish form cut its way easily through the dim darkness of the room, curving in a wavy line up to the crib’s thin legs.

   Curling upwards, the reptilian shadow spun in a ribbon of black up the leg of the crib, flattening itself against the curve of the crib’s front and making its way swiftly to the lip. As it moved, the darkness elongated, thickening visibly against the pale colors of the crib, soon its tapering tail wound around the whole circumference of the crib, hemming the carriage in with a wide band of darkness.

       The head of the creature rose above the lip, separating from the body of the crib and adding dimensions until the forebody of the jet black snake rose high above the hanging toys enclosing the tiny, sleeping form.

      An intense cold suddenly ensconced the crib, sending a ripple of frost out across the room in a wide circle. With a deep hiss, the serpent slid down into the crib, passing through the dome of toy hangings, it bent its entire form around the sleeping baby, nestled in a soft blanket.

        Positioning its triangular head above the   baby, the coils of the night serpent constricted slowly on the baby’s torso, squeezing gently, but intensifying force until the pressure was felt within the child. The serpent’s mouth gaped wide, long fangs sliding forward into place, coiling tapers of darkness running along the needle sharp fangs.

     As the tightening ropes of the snake’s body tightened themselves still more, a soft glow penetrated the still sleeping child’s chest. Growing brighter, a hazy orb of pure gold grew steadily out of the baby’s torso, the coils of black shying away from the brightening glow.

    Pulsing slightly, the orb hung above the child, still attached to the child by curving strings of strong light. The dark snake’s eyes flashed against the powerful light of the orb, bearing its nightmarish fangs, the serpent drew back its body, preparing to strike.

    The thin layer of frost on the floor cracked, spider web flurries of breaks running out along the floor, accompanied by a soft, growing rumble, like an engine, prepping for a race. The shadowy snake froze, it’s body stiffening in a backward arc. It’s victim momentarily forgotten, the shadowy snake hissed in agitation as the rumble grew into a deep growl of anger, rising about the crib in a closing orb of fury.

   Rising above the crib, towering to the ceiling, a huge, shaggy form stood against the darkness of the room.

      Slackening its coils, the snake flattened itself against the interior of the crib, relinquishing its hold on the child. As it did, the orb of pure gold, slowly sank back into the baby’s chest. Above the carriage, the enormous form bent, its huge head reaching down to the crib. The dark snake hissed in fear, coiling against the back of the crib, trapped.

       Two giant paws moved from the animal’s sides, surrounding the crib on each side. The growling suddenly stopped, replaced by a low, rumbling undertone.

     The snout of the creature dipped closer, and then, with a flash of claws, the huge thing struck, snatching the black snake from the crib in a cage of curved claws. Hissing madly, the serpent thrashed, biting at the powerful claws gripping it.

   Undaunted, the enormous creature brought the writhing nightmare up in front of its face, tiny beetle eyes looking straight into the dark sockets of the snake. The creature was a bear, an enormous bear, its head larger than the crib far below.

        Momentarily frozen by the sight of the bear’s face, the dark serpent renewed its thrashing, attempting to squeeze out of the tight hold of the bear’s claws. Raising its paw, the bear tightened its grip on the creature, gripping it tighter and tighter.

  Writhing and thrashing, the snake’s body elongated, slapping against the bear’s foreleg, diluting and stretching, becoming less distinct, flattening into a hazy impression of itself. At last, the bear closed it’s fist, the serpent’s form disappeared, fading into the dim glow of the room, evaporating into nothingness.

   Its work done, the huge guardian shrank to the floor, disappearing into the predawn glow of the single window.

   As the sun rose, the square of light from the window stretched forward, falling on the crib and displaying it in a bright glow of sunlight. On the floor around it, the pile of leaning toys fell in a rolling inward wave, dogs, foxes, dragons and mice, with also, directly beneath the crib, a single stuffed bear.