A terrible thunderstorm of explosions went off.
Everyone went silent, unable to comprehend what was going on.
It was then when they heard a horrible cracking of the tree of life trembling.
All the elves stood still, their eyes wide and their mouths gaping open in shock.
The Tree of Life was burning.
The dreaded fire roared with a burning hatred.
Cathy’s mind was blank. She was fighting against one of the legendary creatures, temporarily forgetting.
She watched in horror.
The fire raged, moving swiftly like a snake up the tree trunks, twisting and turning. Cathy has seen many forest fires in her life, but this fire was aggressive, eating up every inch of the tree like a hungry demon who had never seen food before. Red and black fire swayed in erratic movement, striking out at the other Elves who came to help control the fire, but it was useless.
Their power was not strong enough to cleanse the demonic rage. Something was terribly wrong.
Cathy felt the pit of her stomach twist into knots. Even her heart crunched, becoming an ugly twist of the mess that wouldn’t let go. She couldn’t believe what she had seen.
“No,” Cathay whispered. “No!”
Anger boiled in Cathy’s heart, becoming a torrent of emotions that she could not control. Her home was dying, and the thought infuriated her.
From the fire that raged with terror, in flames, a monster had appeared from the fire, completely destroying the tree in half.
A black monster appeared out of the fire. Seven snake-like heads erupted and swung side-to-side, hissing and blowing out fire from its mouth. Seven identical heads emerged from the portal, each one with a different number of crowned horns. Diamond-shaped eyes that zipped from one location to another, snake-like lips flickered outwards, testing the air. It was a giant dinosaur with multiple heads stuck on one body. Glimmering brownish gray scales decorated its whole body as bulging muscles, lacing every inch.
It was the Hydra.
Instinctively, like a bolt of lighting, she rushed forward towards the Hydra with her Legendary Weapon in hand, Mockingbird.
The glimmering black Scythe contrasted against her petite figure, making her look even smaller. Her speed increased by ten folds as the magic from the Scythe amplified her movement. Rage filled her heart as she leaped forward, swinging at the first of the seven Hydra heads.
“Die!” Cathy screamed, knowing full well that she needed to move fast or the acidic breath from the Hydra could kill her. Her first swing made contact, slicing the ugly head. The swing was clean, cutting from the shoulder as the Hydra head flew to the left. Screams of pain could be heard from the Hydra itself, thrashing around in anger from the loss of one of its seven heads.
With a loud thud, the head fell onto the ground as black blood from the pool splashed outwards onto the surrounding. Its acidic blood melted and destroyed the plants and trees, eventually going up in flames.
All six beading, diamond-shaped eyes honed directly at Cathy. Rage filled its mind, knowing that their mortal enemy was right before them. The wound that she caused hissed, popped, and crackled, eventually closing up in seconds.
Cathy didn’t stop from blitzing forward. She knew she needed to slay this Hydra before it caused destruction that could harm her home. Just as if Hydra was reading her movement, all six heads started to power up as balls of energy started to converge in their mouth. It wasn’t like the acidic balls of energy that it spewed out, but condensed energy that seemed more destructive than before. If she knew better, she got the feeling that if they spewed out the energy in her direction, the city was in danger.
Alarmed, she ducked, heading straight toward the belly of the Hydra, lifting to slice the underbelly. But before she could even lay her Scythe underneath its belly, its tail swung and gripped Cathy’s leg, tripping her.
“Agh!” She fell forward, extending her arm to stop her fall. She tucked and rolled under. Getting out of the dragon’s underbelly was now a priority without getting stomped. Her hand whipped out, grabbing the tail as she yanked the tail out from her feet as she got out unscathed. She then dug her feet into the ground and used all her strength to pull the Hydra tail in one direction.
She let go, bursting forward as she swung her Scythe with full force. One of the six heads snapped its head towards Cathy, spewing out a blast of energy in her direction.
Alarmed, Cathy’s weapon and the blast of energy made an impact. First, static-like energy cackled outwards. Next, the ripple-like effect flattened the surrounding.
Gritting her teeth, Cathy grabbed hold of her psyche with two hands. The second head swiveled towards her, spitting out another powerful blast. Not even a second later, the third, fourth, and fifth followed, thundering after. One after the other, the shockwave pushed her slowly backward.
Beads of sweat erupted from her face and body, the push from the powerful energy was no joke.
She knew that her body couldn’t take the sixth strike without injuring herself. Panic started to fill in her heart, but she couldn’t back down from her position. Behind her were her Elven soldiers that were fighting against the swarms of lizard monsters. If she moved, the power from the blast would kill both the monsters and her people, and it wasn’t something she wanted to compromise.
“Come on. Come on. Come on! I can do it!” Cathy repeatedly chanted to herself, pushing her body to her limit. Sparks of light started to swirl around her Scythe. A clicking mechanical-like sound could be heard from her Scythe.
It was as if the Scythe heard her plea. The contraption on her Scythe, where a red jewel embedded on its hilt. It swirled with life, sucking in the power of the Hydra’s energy like a black hole. Then, hungrily, it devoured its power, filling it up.
Cathy was ecstatic at the sudden turn of events, giving her the boost that she needed to counter Hydra’s attack. Then, with a final breath, the sixth head spat out a powerful blast of accumulated energy that was stronger than the rest. Her hair raised up on her arm. She hoped that the
Scythe was strong enough to suck in the other surrounding energy before the last hit her.
Just as if on cue, the Scythe accelerated double time in devouring the Hydra’s energy. With a whirl and a grinding clink, it slurped it up. The power of the Scythe amplified in energy, even evolving the Scythe’s form.
It was no longer a simple Scythe with a red jewel embedded in it. Instead, a brown scale-like design appeared on the wooden part of the handle. Even the feather-like form sprouted down the metal staff. Each feather was dyed red on the tip, giving it a unique flare. In total, twelve large feathers seemed to grow more prominent than the rest. She could feel the Hydra’s energy’s stored power, eventually filling up three of the twelve feathers.
Pleased with the outcome, she wondered what kind of power it could unleash, but as try as she might, the stored power would not activate.
Finally, the energy from the Hydra’s mouth dissipated, leaving behind an angry hiss.
Surrounding Cathy, the ground was bare. The plants rotted and dissolved from the residue energy that Mockingbird couldn’t devour. Even still, it was enough for her to counter-attack.
With a push of her feet, she charged forward. Her deadly Scythe swung with vigor as she twirled it above her head. A beautiful arch was formed as the image followed after, the blade slit another head, leaving behind five.
“That’s how you do it!” Cathy screamed with delight. With a fist pump, her lips were curled up with a maddening glee. No way she was going to let her prey go.
The Hydra screamed in pain. They rage as their feet crush whatever their feet landed. Blood spewed out from the cut that Cathy had created, but it didn’t take long as another head appeared from its shoulder. This time it was two.
Cathy frowned. Her eyes squinted.
A nasty boiling spit appeared out of Hydra’s mouth, spitting out the powerful acid.
Darting to the right, Cathy barely missed the pitfall of green goo.
Cathy clicked her tongue.
“Is that the best you got?!” Cathy shouted.
Cathy bolted forward, swinging her Scythe.
She swung, taking out another head.
With a thud, the head fell to the ground. The head hisses and breaks apart, becoming a muddle of gunk of green acidic goo. The ground became a dangerous pool of acid, devouring any trees or plants that touched it.
It takes a long for the Hydra head to be replaced by another two.
Cathy gritted her teeth.
Once again, she continued her attack. She swung and swung, trying to take as many of the Hydra’s heads off with one swing.
It didn’t take long for it to be replaced. Eventually, the head had become to a hundred, snapping, striking, and spitting out acidic breath.
It was becoming harder and harder for Cathy to dodge.
“What are you doing?!” Moca shouted. He was fighting against the Black Gryphon, spitting spider webs that tied up the two black griffin’s children. They fell down from the sky, entangled and unable to move.
“Wake up!” Moca spat out strings of webs, entangling some of Hydra’s necks, causing them to hit each other.
Cathy shook her head. Determined that she would kill the Hydra today.
“Thanks!” Cathy jumped out of the way and ran straight to its side. She then jumped straight on top of Hydra’s neck that tried to eat her up.
Her Scythe was close at hand.
The other Hydra’s head snapped and hissed, trying to get her in midair, but Cathy moved with precision, almost dancing.
The Black Gryphon screeched throughout the field angrily as he swooped, crossing past the Hydra down from the sky, straight toward Moca, who was trying to assist Cathy whenever he could.
Tart bolted out from the forest, smashing into the Black Gryphon in midair, pushing the Black Gryphon aside.
“We can’t keep two legendary creatures up like this!” Tart growled. They were being outpowered and pushed back.
“Keep fighting, pup!” Moca shouted back. His spider webs became a tangled mess as the Black Gryphon’s children were trying hard to get out of the mess that he had created. “If we don’t, all of the elven nations would be lost!”
“I know, gramps!” Tart barked back. He disappeared in seconds, reappearing to the right of the Black Gryphon and slammed to him again. His nails and fangs dug in deeply, tearing apart as much flesh as he could.
A flutter of feathers fell as Moca landed on all four. Then, spitting, on the ground, as he spat out feathers.
“Why don’t you fight them instead!” Tart grumbled. “I’m doing the best I can!” Then, with a push of his leg, he jumped to the side and sprang off as he raced through the forest to dodge out of the way as the Black Gryphon continued to shoot balls of dark energy at him.
“Stay still, you ugly mutt!” The Black Gryphon spat. Every time he missed, it infuriated the Black Gryphon even more as Moca continued to dodge out of harm’s way.
“What do you think I am doing?” Moca grumbled.
The fight between the Gryphons was a mess.
Trees were knocked over and destroyed, completely leaving the ground uprooted.
“I’m going to kill you guys!” Raven, one of the black griffin children, screamed. She was entangled so tightly in the web that she couldn’t move out of the web.
Her brother, the Raven, was wiggling in the spider web, trying to escape but failed.
“I swear! When I get to you, I’ll kill you!” Raven screeched.
Nobody paid attention to her; the fight between the legendary monsters was trying to dominate the forest.
Crow trembled and squirmed some more; eventually, he could slowly cut out the webs that tangled them whole. Nobody paid attention to him, allowing him to continue to make his move. Finally, his finger wiggled out, pulling the web apart.
When Raven saw that her brother was out, she tried to whistle to her brother but instead blew air. Unfortunately, she was terrible at whistling.
Crow looked at her sister; he shook his head. Instead, he threw a small knife in her direction.
Raven squinted and looked back at Crow, asking why he wasn’t helping her get out.
Crow shrugged his shoulder and flew out of the twisted nest of webs.
Raven squirmed even harder but still failed to get out as she screamed at the top of her lungs, frustrated that she couldn’t get out.
Suddenly, out of the corner of her eyes, her instincts kicked in.
Cathy came barreling from the side as she was thrown across the ground by the Hydra’s tail, knocking the wind out of Raven as they tumbled in midair. Although in that instant, Raven became free, she quickly tried to overpower Cathy.
Crow dove in from the sky, entangling themselves into a threw way fight.
Raven escaped and flew in the air.
Cathy wrestled for control. They twirled and twisted, falling onto the ground. She tried to overpower Crow, but Crow made it difficult for her to get the upper hand.
Looking down, Crow smiled. A hint of a deadly gleam of blood lust flashed across Crow’s eyes, bringing chill’s down Cathy’s back. A shiny dagger was pulled out as it loomed over her head. She knew if she did not get out of this uncomfortable position, she would die.
Crow thrust the knife into Cathy’s eyes.
Cathy barely dodged the knife, pushing it with her hands, which the dagger slipped and cut her cheeks.
“Pity to see such a lovely face get damaged.” Crow licked his lips. “I wouldn’t mind cutting it up even more, though.”
Cathy reached over, grabbing Crow by the scruff of his neck, pulling him into her body. In a surprise, Crow fell into her. It didn’t take long for Cathy to flip him over, allowing her to get a better position, keeping him grounded. She then used his own arm to start choking him with it.
Crow coughed, getting furious that he was getting beaten by Cathy.
Cathy didn’t give up; she pushed in even harder. Crow blinked, unable to weasel out of the hold,
until finally, his eyes slowly rolled back, passing out.
Just when she was to finish him off, the Hydra roared, spitting acid all around.
Cathy rolled to the side, jumping out of the way.
Hydra angrily continued to spew out more and more acid as it could, completely digesting the surroundings. Crow woke up; his skin was burnt from the Hydra’s spit as he weakly got out of the way.
Berry came flying down with a roar, smashing into the Hydra. Her fire blasted out of her mouth, spraying the Hydra in her light.
“Get back! You slime ball!” Berry shouted in anger. Her flames roared with life.
“Berry!” Cathy shouted, “those heads multiply after you cut it!”
Berry’s tail whipped around, grabbing the bottom of her body. She then sliced one of the Hydra’s necks, slicing it in half.
The head fell, tumbling down, but moments later, another took its place.
“What?!” Berry was baffled by what she had seen. To see the cut head becoming one more shocked her. “How?!”
“The Hydra can multiply its head!” Cathy blocked the acidic fire that sprayed at Cathy with her Scythe.
“Damn it, is there anything that we can do?”
“I don’t know!”
The number of heads had become more.
Cathy swung her Scythe, cutting the head that came snaking to her right. The head that fell onto the ground shriveled up, leaving behind nothing but ashes. Then, springing out from the cut head, two new ones appeared.
“This is annoying,” Berry grunted. “From a phoenix that burned down an entire forest to now a hydra that keeps popping up extra heads, how in the world does it even have space to have another head?”
“Good question,” Cathy swung again, this time taking down two one after another as the Hydra tried to wind her into an ugly knot.
Cathy swung, tangled in the knots of the hydra heads that came to the right and the left, becoming a torrent of snarls, snaps, and hisses while entangled with Berry.
Berry snapped, biting into another neck that tried to strangle her. She ripped and snarled, spitting out fire one after another.
Cathy swung, trying to detangle the two.
The Hydra wouldn’t let them go.
Berry could feel the acidic spit that splashed against her scales, the sting from it was becoming agitated, and the longer it was on her, the more she wanted to roll on the ground to wipe it off.
“Get your stinking breath off my face.” Berry roared; she pushed one of the many heads away from her face; she opened up her mouth and expelled a powerful blast of energy at the Hydra’s face, completely annihilating it with one breath.
With a slump, the burnt-up face fell to the side. However, the Hydra did not seem to mind continuing its attack.
Cathy swung over and over again.
This time, freeing Berry from its grip.
Berry twisted, smashing her tail into the side of the Hydra’s body.
In response, the Hydra also moved its tail, grabbed her feet, and yanked it out from underneath her.
Berry stumbled backward, falling on her back with a loud thump. Her mistake had cost her as she tried to wiggle out.
The Hydra snaked in, biting into her very body, trying to rip her apart in many different ways.
A painful grunt escaped Berry’s lips; turning was becoming difficult and escaping how tightly the Hydra was keeping her in place. Then, finally, it got to the point where she couldn’t move at all.
One of the hydra heads reared back, its chest bubbling with green energy, ready to hurl it down at Berry with one blow.
“Berry!” Cathy shouted; she jumped in. Her Scythe swung, cutting as many Hydra’s that held Berry down.
Berry took this chance and snaked her head to the right, using her whole body to push the Hydra off her.
It took real effort to push herself into position so she could push the Hydra off.
Out of the corner of her eyes, Berry saw Cathy jump up onto her side, racing in to pull her out.
“Cathy! Watch out!” Berry saw the incoming attack from the side.
Everything happened in a blink of an eye.
Even Berry couldn’t do anything.
Cathy felt her chest sting. Her eyes became wide, realizing too late what just had happened.
Berry couldn’t believe what Cathy had done, impaled by the sudden Hydra attack.
“Cathy?!” Berry screamed. Rage filled her eyes as her tail swiped and hit against the Hydra’s side. Whatever opportunity that she could take, she pushed the Hydra off her. She pulled back her head, blowing out a rage of white fire that completely surrounded the whole body.
With a roar, the fire crackled and roared, slurping up the blood and burning away the acidic spit in the process.
The Hydra was bleeding, unable to recreate any more heads as it was now on its last one.
Cathy coughed up blood. She looked down. A sharp spike was smashed into her chest, puncturing her lungs, but even still, she didn’t stop. With a twist of her body, she threw the Scythe at the Hydra.
It flew straight towards the last head of the Hydra in a big arc, cutting the head. Then, it spun and landed straight into the Hydra’s heart.
Cathy spat out blood once again. She stumbled forward.
Berry caught her by her tail.
“Cathy?” Berry panicked. She quickly raised her light energy, sending it straight to Cathy to heal her.
The more energy she tried to heal Cathy, the more energy seemed to seep out, unable to heal the wound. She couldn’t pull out the sharp spike in Cathy’s chest, or she knew that she would die bleeding.
“It’s okay,” Cathy coughed. “It’s okay, Berry.”
Cathy continued to cough up blood, becoming harder and harder for her to breathe. Her eyes fluttered close.
“Cathy!” Berry panicked, wondering why her magic wasn’t working on Cathy. She could see the power disappearing into nothingness, leaving behind not a trace of her power.
There was nothing she could do.
Quickly, she picked up Cathy with her claw. Then, with a pump of her wings, she quickly flew up in the air.
“Keep the Black Gryphon at bay!” Berry shouted to Moca and Tart.
Both of them nodded, understanding what Berry wanted to do.
Berry trusted them. She flapped her wings, pulling herself into the sky, and she flapped her wing in the air.
Quickly, she knew she didn’t have time. She needed to get straight to one of the elder elves that could assist her simultaneously, trying not to rattle Cathy any further.
Berry flew hard, heading straight to the elven council.
“Guinevere!” Berry roared, shaking the elven city. “Guinevere! Come out! Where are you?!”
The elves, who were hiding, peeked out, wondering why Berry was screaming.
“Guinevere! I need your help!” Berry placed Cathy onto the floor as gently as possible.
Guinevere appeared out of one of the houses, where there were many other elven soldiers in need of healing. But, unfortunately, there were too many as the death count kept rising.
“Berry?” Guinevere rushed out. “Is something wrong?”
Guinevere was covered messily with dirt and blood. Her eyes were tired, and her shoulder slumped.
“Cathy is dying!” Berry hurriedly replied.
“What?! The Hero?!” Guinevere rushed over in an instant. She squatted down, checking Cathy’s vital signs. Cathy was becoming paler and paler as the day went by.
Even Berry couldn’t help but hover over them.
“She’s too injured,” Guinevere stated.
“Heal her,” Berry demanded. “My magic won’t work.”
“What? Is that even possible?”
Guinevere became serious. “I’ll do my best.” Guinevere closed her eyes, trying to pour magic into Cathy’s body. Then, gently but surely, she pulled out the spike that was edged in Cathy’s chest.
Every small movement caused Cathy to cough up blood.
Berry gritted her teeth. Stress overcame her as she didn’t know what to do. This was the first time she couldn’t do anything for her Heroes. The healing magic that used to work now did not. What was wrong? She didn’t know.
“There is something wrong,” Guinevere spoke through stained teeth. “My magic is being obstructed.”
“By what?!” Berry asked in a hurry.
“The Hydra’s magic. It’s not like the normal magic that we elves can deal with. The Hydra’s magic dissolves her chest as we speak, even when I try to prolong it and heal the wound…I can’t. The tree of life is dead, and I can’t pull the world magic anymore.”
Berry’s heart dropped.
“What about mine? Maybe something I can do to help?”
Guinevere shook her head. “I am sorry.”
Berry’s head drooped even further, feeling terrible that she couldn’t do anything.
“Berry.” Cathay weakly called out her name.
Berry leaned forward with a snap of her head, trying to listen to every word Cathy was dying to breathe.
“I…can’t thank you enough.” Cathy coughed, “You allowed me to wield the Legendary
Weapon…cough…and this allowed me to be a hero.”
“Don’t talk; save your breath.”
Cathay shook her head. “I need…..” she took a deep breath. “To thank you for allowing….” She
coughed up blood.
Berry grimaced, wishing she could do something for Cathy, but she knew there was nothing she could do, and it infuriated her.
“Me to become the hero…..to my……p….e….opl….e.” Cathay closed her eyes. The last breath escaped out of her mouth, leaving behind silence.
Berry froze, unable to speak. Then, at that moment, she pulled back her head and roared.
Her thundering cry of sorrow rang through the forest floor.
All the legendary creatures stopped for a moment, looking over. They all could feel it. The powerful lull of the magical rage that Berry had sent.
Berry took to flight.