Chapter 0:

Prologue: At the Very End

The Crushing Weight

The sea was at war with the sky itself. The very ocean itself was throwing itself into the air in colossal waves, while the sky rained down fire, scorching the earth and turning the waves into boiling steam. Geysers roared from the depths, throwing tons of water into the sky, as if the ocean was trying to swat the flames from the sky. Bookmark here

There was rage and anguish in the air. Screams, agonising pain, and wretched howls punctured the airs like knives to the chest. It was a vision of the end of the world. Bookmark here

Figures made entirely of flames were dragged into the twisting seas, screaming as they were torn apart by the water, while beings entirely aquatic were wrenched out into the flaming hurricane above them. Aquamarine blood splattered across the water, there for a moment, swept away the next. The movements were so sudden and jarring that it was hard to distinguish them from the other horrors taking place. But they were, and there was no one to mourn them. With no bodies left behind, there could be no grieving.Bookmark here

Only countless more suffering.Bookmark here

Orek stood atop a worn sandstone cliff, watching the painful scene unfold before him. He could feel the heat on his own face from here. Wave after wave of explosions, wash after wash of the smell of sea water steam. He watched as a flame was half caught in a geyser, ripping its form in half. He winced and glanced away, sick of seeing the violence.Bookmark here

But even without seeing it, he could hear it. And he could feel it.Bookmark here

Every time one of the flame figures was whisked away, he felt a psychic scream of agony ricochet through his mind. Bookmark here

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And in front of him lay piles of ashes and bloodied, damp corpses. Bookmark here

Death had come hard and fast, and he had been unable to a damn thing to end any of it. He was merely a victim alongside all of the dead, too weak to change his own destiny. Bookmark here

Orek floated slowly through the battlefield, barely bothering to dodge the bodies of the Kerta, their blue bodies intermixed with the ashes of his own people, the Tria. He could feel his face was twisted with the loss of so many, many who didn't even want to be here. Bookmark here

There was a scream, one so familiar that it sent a rupture of dread through his very core. Bookmark here

He spun and his black eyes shot open, horror painted upon them. Bookmark here

A Tria was standing over the top of a screaming Kerta, who was splashing water at the furious flames, desperately trying to throw him off. Bookmark here

Orek was already flying. Every essence of his body screamed in agony as he pushed himself harder and harder.Bookmark here

The Tria warriors fist came down, and Orek heard another scream.Bookmark here

It was none other than his own. Bookmark here

Marshall Eastman
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