|By: Hayes A. Jones
A predator was stalking the jungles of Monster
Island. Creeping through the thick forest with unnatural silence,
eight great, spindly legs carried a killer high above the ground.
Emotionless eyes scanned their surrounding for
potential prey. The gigantic spider's usual food source, a strain
of giant mantis known as Kamacuras, had disappeared, already
fallen victim to the hunter or migrated to a safer area. The
island was also home to many other equally huge creatures, but
most were many times more deadly than any Kamacuras. It could
be extremely dangerous for Kumonga to try and take down one
of these beasts, but that was a risk that the invertebrate would
have to take. An intense hunger gnawed at the mammoth's spider's
insides, threatening to completely consume the predator. Kumonga
needed a good meal and soon, or it would surely perish. The
sinister giant was desperate. It had to eat and it was willing
to take on anything to do that. It would even attack Godzilla,
King of the Monsters himself, if the chance presented itself.
Fortunately for Kumonga, it wasn't the island's
leader that appeared, but the second-in-command.
As Kumonga prowled through the jungle, the shuffling
of rocks from somewhere above caught its attention. Four pairs
of eyes turned upwards. Perched atop a mountain ledge was Anguirus,
Godzilla's most trusted ally and closest friend. The ankylosaur's
crocodilian jaws were split by a unfriendly snarl. Kumonga was
in his territory and he wasn't in a generous enough mood to
share. To the ancient relic's surprise, the goliath spider didn't
back down. Instead, it actually began scaling the rocky slope,
stinger flashing from between the predator's mandibles with
a choo-choo. Anguirus's hard eyes narrowed. The spider meant
business. The dinosaur's fierce grimace parted, unleashing a
long, unearthly wail. As the cry ended with a sharp honk, Anguirus
charged, barreling down towards Kumonga.
As Anguirus thundered downward, Kumonga lunged
to meet the reptile, made fearless by his hunger. In a dull
crash, flesh and bone clashed with a hard exoskeleton. A writhing
mass of limbs and scales, the two giants tumbled to the forest
floor below, flattening countless trees under their combined
mass. With a cry of effort, Anguirus threw Kumonga from him.
The invertebrate landed on its back several hundred yards away,
legs flailing. Rolling to his feet, Anguirus flashed his conical
teeth and lunged. Kumonga was suddenly crushed into the ground
as it cried out in distress, Anguirus pushing down on its cephalothorax
with powerful forelimbs. As the arachnid's clawed legs batted
pitifully at his carapace, the prehistoric throwback grabbed
one of the thrashing limbs and bit down. Bone-white teeth scrapped
against the predator's outer shell with a dry scratching. Anguirus
growled and spat out the leg bitterly. Kumonga's exoskeleton
was almost impenetrable, like an organic suit of armor. The
quadruped grumbled in thought. Maybe he could pry the leg off
at the base...
He would never get the chance to try. The very
leg that he had just held in bone-crushing bite snapped back,
plunging its tip into Anguirus's eye. The dinosaur fell back
with a pained scream, a squirt of blood arcing from his eye
socket. Unbeknownst to Anguirus, Kumonga's legs had not simply
been trying to dialogue the the spiked beast. They had been
exploring his body, mapping it out, letting the spider know
exactly where to strike. As Anguirus pawed at his bloody face,
Kumonga flipped himself upright. Scuttling to face Anguirus,
the enormous invertebrate angled itself upwards and fired a
stream of liquid web into the air. The white material gently
rained down on Anguirus, hardening on contact with the great
reptile. As the webbing built up, the saurian brawler's struggling
began to weaken, his movements restrained. By the time Kumonga
stopped, Anguirus was encased in cocoon, the very same structure
that served as a coffin for numerous creatures in the past.
Clicking his pincers together in anticipation, Kumonga crept
forward, stinger shining from its shaded maw. Anguirus gritted
his teeth. He was in trouble. The spider's web was monstrously
strong and its venom even stronger.
Luckily for Anguirus, he was just as strong and
had the willpower to match.
Pushing with all his might, Anguirus broke free
from the webbing, ivory spikes tearing through the white blanket
that held him down. Seeing that its web had failed, Kumonga
rushed forward, legs working with mechanical precision and stinger
emerging from his hideous mouth. Before the deadly needle could
be plunged into his flesh, Anguirus hooked his nasal horn under
the spider's head and heaved upward with a wail. Kumonga could
only choo-choo in a feeble argument as it was flipped over again.
The hulking arachnid swiftly righted itself and sprang backwards,
landing a safe distance from Anguirus. One honking and snarling
and the other unsettlingly quiet, the dinosaur and the spider
circled eachother. With long, wispy stream of webbing still
clinging to his carapace, Anguirus looked like a wandering,
Mesozoic spirit. With a sudden burst of motion, Kumonga pounced.
The great invertebrate soared across Monster Island's skyline,
legs flexing and mandible chattering. With a wailing battle
cry, Anguirus whipped around and caught the airborne Kumonga
like a world-class baseball batter, his spiny tail slamming
into the spider with a wet crunch of a rupturing exoskeleton.
A trail of foul liquid marking its path, the arachnid sailed
from the ancient scraper's tail and landed in a bleeding mess,
legs curling against its broken body. Anguirus inspected the
spider with a single narrowed eye. Any thought of the invertebrate
being dead were dispelled when its mandible began to twitch.
With a long battle cry, Anguirus bound forward
into an excited gallop, his remaining eye burning with the need
to dismember his opponent. But before the ankylosaur's outstretched
claws could tear into the damaged outer shell of the downed
Kumonga, a stream of web shot from between the spider's pincers.
The sticky liquid struck Anguirus's face and hardened instantly,
stealing the dinosaur's already crippled vision. The titanic
reptile jerked back with a yelp and began thrashing wildly.
As Anguirus struggled to regain his sight, Kumonga weakly righted
himself. With a small choo-choo of triumph, the spider reared
up and launched more webbing. Anguirus managed to tear the webbing
from his face and was immediately faced with a downpour of the
white material. He may have been strong enough to free himself
form the webbing before, but a good deal of his strength was
now gone. Realizing the gravity of his situation, the quadruped
gave a hearty wail and charged through the rain of webbing in
one last, desperate move. Kumonga began crawling backwards in
panic as the dinosaur closed in. The webbing began to hold Anguirus
back, long strands of the stuff tethering the spiny reptile
to the ground. Finally, Anguirus collapsed, sprawled just before
Kumonga. The arachnid ceased playing the part of an intimidated
coward and resumed the role of predator, moving forward on his
long, hairy legs. Anguirus closed his eyes in defeat.
He was done.
Or was he? Something similar to a plan had suddenly
formed in Anguirus's simple head. The ankylosaur did his best
to look pathetic, which honestly wasn't too hard by this point.
As Kumonga drew closer, Anguirus tried to judge the spider's
position based solely on the vibration of its movements. No...
it was too much of a gamble to base such a critical move - literally
life-or-death, in fact - on sound alone. The ancient beast risked
cracking an eye open. He barely suppressed a honk of surprise
as he stared into his own reflection on a venom droplet hanging
from Kumonga's stinger. In almost the same moment, Anguirus
and Kumonga lunged, both intent on killing the other.
Unfortunately for Kumonga, Anguirus was a fraction
of a second faster.
Twisting his head around the spider's lethal
stinger, the dinosaur snapped his jaws shut with a gush of foul
goo. Fatigue overtaking his worn body, Anguirus collapsed and
let the mashed remains of Kumonga's head ooze from his mouth.
Following the quadruped's example, the late Kumonga's body fell
as well, legs curled in death. And this time it was no trick.
Anguirus struggled to keep his eyes open. He was tired, so very
tired. The fight had drained all his energy. He needed to sleep.
Sleeping too deeply on Monster Island could mean never waking
up, but Anguirus trusted both his reputation as Godzilla's best
friend and a few of his fellow giants to keep him safe. As the
gentle hand of sleep slowly pushed down his eyelids, Anguirus
swore that the first thing he would do after regaining his strength
was to drain the nearest stream and rid his mouth of Kumonga's
Nose to nose with the corpse of a giant spider,
missing an eye, and covered in webbing, Anguirus slept...