13 for Halloween: Disobedient Iczer (audio)

Part 1 * Part 2 * Part 3 * Part 4 * Part 5

Once upon a dimension, there existed four little hellspawns named Qemno, Gatoix, Byanki, and Iczer, and they lived with their mother in the festering pus sac of a decaying creature trapped in the dried magma of the root of a very large bleeder tree.

“Youngling rapscallions,” said Mama Hellspawn one morning, in her guttural native tongue. “This pus sac is devoid of nutrients and so you must go out into the realm and fend for yourselves for a while. You may have noticed portals opening to badlands, stay away from these doorways. Your father entered one and was slaughtered by the beasts called hoo-mans. They are unnatural creatures and must be avoided at all costs.”

“Why?” asked Iczer.

“Because they will put you in a stew and eat you until you are no more,” answered Mama.

“No, Mama, why did we open the doorways to danger?” Iczer clarified.

“The hoo-mans opened the portals…to slay us. Now, run along and feed yourselves but do not become prey. When I have found a new home, I will send for you.” Mama Hellspawn turned to leave, resetting her jaw from conversation mode to evisceration mode in order to hunt and take down a large beast for their new home.

Qemno, Gatoix, and Byanki were obedient hellspawns and did as they were bade, venturing out and using their enhanced sense of smell to detect the scent of victuals and root through the gravepits until they reached pockets of cadaverous dung worms.

But Iczer, the disobedient one, scampered straight to the nearest portal and clambered his way into the badland place his mother called Errth.

But what made these lands bad? Iczer wondered. He encountered several beasts that traveled on all fours just like him. Were these hoo-mans? No, for they were not scary at all. He unhinged his jaw and swallowed them whole for his stomach teeth to gnaw on.

But then, when his belly was slaying the meal inside him, whom should he meet but a hoo-mans! Mama was right, it was frightfully ugly and walked on twos instead of fours.

The hoo-mans ran after Iczer, waving a painstick and screeching something unintelligible. Iczer was most dreadfully frightened; he rushed all over the badlands, for he had forgotten the way back to the portal. He lost one of his legs when it became wedged in a crack in the stone ground and he was forced to detach it to evade capture, and sacrificed an exploding eye which emitted a poisonous gas to choke the hoo-mans.

After losing the hoo-mans, Iczer thought he had gotten away altogether, but he unfortunately ran into a web of some sort and got himself all tangled up.

Iczer gave himself up for lost as more hoo-mans came with their painsticks to kill him, but he remembered Mama showing him how to escape a web, so he wriggled and wriggled just as he had been taught. It was no use, he was still trapped even though he was sure he had done everything the right way.

The hoo-mans beat him with painsticks and he was helpless to defend himself. Iczer shed big tears and let out a wail that only made the hoo-mans beat him harder. They beat him and beat him and when they tired themselves out or lost interest because he was unable to scream anymore, they picked him up within the web, probably to put him in a stew and eat him all up. He would have cried if he had any tears left.

This was the end, he felt it in his three hearts, so he said the only prayer he knew, a youngling’s prayer for safety before hibernation, and tried to be a brave little hellspawn as he gave up his life.

But there was a commotion and he was thrown violently to the ground. All around him the hoo-mans were squealing, squawking and yawping at a decibel that hurt his ears to hear. And they were exploding, spraying liquid everywhere.

Was that what their blood looked like? Iczer wondered. And when the last of them had fallen, the reason for the sudden burst of chaos came into his line of sight…Mama.

“I came as soon as I heard your call,” Mama Hellspawn said, extricating the broodling from the web.

Iczer collapsed into the folds of her being, comforted at first by her cooing. When her tone turned to admonishment, he didn’t care for he was safe within her now, and the world was normal again.

And after she was done reprimanding and punishing him, he would ask her to show him what she had done to the hoo-mans to rescue him because Iczer planned to return to these badlands when he was stronger and make every single creature here pay for their cruelty.