Word Count: 1,966 words
Posted: March 10th, 2017
Los Angeles was under attack.
No one knew where the attackers came from, but they struck fast and hard. A legion of darkness overtook the city streets, slaying men, women, and children alike. With their mixture of modern and medieval technology, they dominated the forces of the U.S. army that dared to oppose them. In a matter of hours, the Artox Army would have complete control over the city.
The legion of reptiles and dark warriors moved through the once bustling streets, clearing a path deeper into the city. Black-armoured knights sped through the streets on their dinosaur-like Shaconne mounts, cutting down any unfortunate soldiers in their path. As they sliced their way through, the dog-like Dawdlers fired bursts of missiles from their back-mounted launchers, blasting away the heavy artillery. As helicopters fired a hail of bullets from above, a rain of fire and arrows came down on them and the U.S. soldiers below as dark bowmen and winged Bulcos rained down hell.
From the shadows, the army’s dark master looked on. For five-hundred years he had waited for the day to rise again and take what rightfully belonged to him. Somewhere, in the heart of Los Angeles, resided the Yuh Yi Joo, the human female that held the power to transform him into a mighty Celestial Dragon. With such power at his fingertips, he would lay down upon the world destruction like no mortal had ever seen.
But from the depths of the bay, another stirred. A giant of giants not seen for many years, whose hunger had driven it to resurface once more. For the past few decades it had sustained itself on marine life, but now that it had exhausted its food supply, the time had come to step onto land once again.
A column of sea water rose of the bay as the beast shot out of the depths. With several experimental flaps of its fin-like wings, it attained flight, and soured over the bay waters into the city. It cast a serpentine shadow over the landscape whilst, at the same time, sunlight reflected off its dull green scales, making it seem like the creature was glowing. A savage shriek escaped its maw and echoed through Los Angeles’ maze of streets, signifying death had arrived.
Its call caught the attention of the U.S. and Artox armies. Man and beast alike turned to the heavens as the emerald monstrosity swooped in and landed roughly on the asphalt further down the road. Its shape resembled that of the legendary eastern dragons, with four small limbs attached to its long, coiling body. Its wings tucked closed to its body, giving it room to manoeuvre in the tight streets. Its maw only contained six teeth - four in the top jaw and two in the bottom – but they were long and tusk-like, and made closing the beast’s mouth look almost impossible.
It looked down at the amassed forces with a ravenous hunger in its eyes. It saw no difference between the two sides. To it, they was only food. With a shriek it slithered down the street, mouth wide open. Both armies forgot about their conflict and focused their fire on the approaching behemoth. Shells, grenades, missiles, bullets, arrows and fireballs did nothing to harm the beast, nor did they slow its advance. The armies made to retreat, but neither side could escape its gaping maw. Man, beast, and vehicle alike vanished down its gullet to a slow and torturous end at its stomach acids. Soon, there was no trace that any living creature had previously been on the street, the only evidence currently digesting in the serpent’s stomach. Reptilicus let out a tired hiss, its hunger still unsatisfied even after consuming both armies. It crawled through the streets, its bulk crashing into both sides of the street and rubbing buildings into featureless piles of rubble.
As it moved deeper into the concrete labyrinth, a dark shape began to coil around one of the many skyscrapers that towered over the city. Like Reptilicus, it was serpentine, but its scales and shape were more reminiscent of a snake than a dragon. Dull grey scales of many shades covered its form from head to tail, broken apart only by its tan underbelly. Its head resembled that of a hooded cobra, complete with frill and all, but its eyes were anything but snake-like. They glowed with an intelligence and malevolence not seen in many a millennia. Buraki, the dark Imoogi, gazed upon the form of Reptilicus and hissed threateningly at the Danish monster. After waiting for centuries for a new Yuh Yi Joo to emerge, the mystical dragon would not allow Reptilicus to ruin his ascension into godhood. Reptilicus stared up at the serpent, snarling aggressively. It did not fear the Imoogi at all. In fact, it saw Buraki as its next meal.
Flaring its wings, Reptilicus lunged for him.
Though somewhat taken aback by the dragon-like monster’s ferocity, Buraki was quick to respond to Reptilicus’ challenge. He reared his top half to the side, allowing the lunging Reptilicus to miss and clamp down on nothing. As it continued soaring past, Buraki struck, sinking his jaws into the back of Reptilicus’ ‘neck’. He thrust his body towards, expertly coiling around the flying monster, and squeezed tightly. Reptilicus shrieked and thrashed around, trying to dislodge its dangerous passenger. With Buraki’s weight atop it, Reptilicus could not stay airborne for much longer and the two began to plummet, Buraki still crushing the life out of the winged reptilian. They crashed through a tower, the impact loosening Buraki’s grip, and the two serpents fell separate from each other.
In the dust cloud, both coiling titans thrashed and shrieked as they untangled themselves from the mangled debris and each other. They raised their heads above the ground as they slithered across it, locking eyes as they circled one another. Reptilicus and Buraki kept eye contact, waiting for the other to make a mistake and leave an opening for an attack. The two made mock lunges at each other, hissing and shrieking as they tried to intimidate the other. While this contest could have gone on for much longer, Reptilicus’ hunger won out, and it lunged forward as Buraki made a mock strike, catching the ancient serpent off-guard. Its tusk-like fangs sunk deep into Buraki’s flesh, releasing a fountain of blood that it lapped up with gusto. Before it could inflict greater damage, Buraki’s jaws closed around Reptilicus and ripped the beast off. Reptilicus rolled across the ground, shrieking dizzily, before an apartment building brought it to a stop. The building shuddered as the Danish monster slammed into it, but managed to hold. Dazed, Reptilicus struggled to rise. The trembling street and the savage hiss that filled the air alerted Reptilicus to Buraki’s approach.
The dark immortal slithered over to the stunned Reptilicus at breakneck speed. With great speed and agility, he quickly coiled around and around the emerald monster’s body and began to slowly apply pressure onto it. Reptilicus squirmed and wiggled in Buraki’s coils as it frantically fought to escape the evil serpent’s death grip. But Buraki would not allow it to escape again, and squeezed even tighter, crushing the life out of Reptilicus. His coils tightened around the false dragon’s stomach, causing Reptilicus to forcefully vomit up the remains of its last meal.
But that was not all that emerged.
Gallons of jade slime were ejected from hidden glands within Reptilicus’ mouth. Buraki’s head, metres away from Reptilicus’ own, swiftly moved to the side to avoid the disgusting projectile. The glob of mucus splattered across a block of buildings and, to Buraki’s surprise and horror, began eating through them as if they were made of cardboard. Granite and steel were effortlessly corroded by Reptilicus’ acidic slime, slowly turning the block into an unrecognisable slab of mush.
Another gurgle came from Reptilicus’s throat. Now realising what this meant, Buraki removed himself from the jade beast, releasing Reptilicus from his coils and slithered away to get out of the range of the Danish serpent’s corrosive bile. Reptilicus slowly huffed and puffed as it recovered from its ordeal. Its bruised ribs began to heal rapidly and it was quickly back in the fight. The beast spread its wings and took to the skies in pursuit of Buraki. From its aerial vantage point, it quickly located the Imoogi and dived towards him, shrieking wildly. As the winged serpent’s cry reached his ears, Buraki looked backwards and upwards to spot Reptilicus coming at him from above at tremendous speeds. Instead of trying to avoid the oncoming threat, Buraki curled his body into a coil and launched himself into the air like a spring at Reptilicus.
The two crashed to the ground and shook the earth in all directions. Both serpents thrashed around as they instinctively coiled around each other, snapping and hissing as each tried to overpower their rival. Being the longer of the two, Buraki was swiftly out-coiling Reptilicus, entwining the Danish monster once more. But Reptilicus had an advantage over the would-be god. It lashed out with its arms and legs, sinking its talons into Buraki’s flesh. As the cobra squeezed, the jade monster slashed into his scales, painting both their hides in his blood. Buraki’s agonized screams filled the air. Motivated further by the dark serpent’s pain, Reptilicus aimed its right hand to strike Buraki’s snout.
The Imoogi bit down on the oncoming limb, crushing its bones and shredding its flesh and drawing a shriek of untold agony from Reptilicus. Buraki pulled away, ripping the arm off of his Danish prey. Reptilicus’ delicious blood flooded the evil one’s mouth, prompting him to begin devouring the limb. He flexed his tongue and throat muscles, slowly swallowing the arm whole.
But that’s when he noticed it. Reptilicus stump was swiftly closing up, sluggishly regenerating into a new arm. The green false dragon, no longer distracted by its pain, glared at Buraki, barring its fangs as a familiar gurgle rose out of its throat. Buraki began to panic and tried to move his head out of the way, but Reptilicus pulled him close to its face with its sole arm. Desperately, Buraki tried to eject the reptile’s severed limb from his mouth in order to use his jaws, but with his potential meal halfway into his throat now, the task was impossible. Reptilicus’ stomach muscles clenched, allowing it to spray Buraki with its corrosive goo. The slime planted itself on the cobra’s exposed ‘neck’ and Buraki gave a strangled scream of agony as it began eating its way through his scales, exposing rib-like bones and his esophagus. Lunging forward with pinpoint accuracy, Reptilicus’ mouth dove into the exposed cavity and clamped around Buraki’s windpipe. With powerful muscles it pulled back, ripping out Buraki’s throat from the inside. The dark serpent spasmed madly, trying to convey his agony with sound, but his torn throat was unable to form any coherent noise.
After a minute of flailing, Buraki’s movements began to fade as Reptilicus watched on with anticipation. The dark Imoogi, the would-be slayer of mankind, fell dead to the ground, Reptilicus’ arm still lodged in his throat.
The next few minutes Reptilicus spent removing itself from the dead snake’s coils. By the time it had untangled itself, its arm had fully regrown. Reptilicus looked over Buraki’s corpse, relishing a meal unlike any other. It did not care about saving humanity. In time, it would eventually devour them as well. For now, Reptilicus was content on dining on a dead immortal, consuming every piece of flesh on his body, its own dead arm included. And once it had finished, it would retreat to the ocean depths once again, seeking out more sustenance for its endless appetite.