The Lake Guardian

PART EIGHT: THE FALL OF MAELSTROM

“Now then, because it is four against one, I think I should even out the odds a little bit, right?” Maelstrom stated before suddenly elongating so that she became so tall, the waters of the Primordial Lake containing them were only slightly covering her exposed feet. She then attempted to stomp on the heroes who barely managed to get away from the fallen goddess’ feet in time.

Maelstrom cackled as she continually attempting to crush her foes underfoot and even their powerful weapons were not enough to penetrate the goddess’s feet. Furthermore, her cloaked weapon caused more catastrophes to occur wherever it struck and even caused the waters to take on a sickly blood-red color that made it nearly impossible to breathe. It appeared that once again, the evil entity had taken the upper hand.

“When will you fools learn that nothing you do is enough to stop me? I shall devour your world until there is not a single soul left and move onto another Reality and another and another… Until the end of time, I shall seek out and destroy all Realities that have ever existed …” she stated, her cackling bellowing across all worlds.

Skip and Amabel pressed on despite the odds stacked up against them. They could not give up for the sake of the world even in the face of such insurmountable odds and they fought bravely, trusting that they would survive this Apocalypse somehow.

Their weapons suddenly began to penetrate the goddess’s feet and where they struck, gashes and wounds of varying magnitudes began to manifest. Maelstrom doubled her efforts to crush them but her efforts bore no fruit. Emboldened by their progress, Amabel and Skip continually attacked the goddess so that she started to shrink as her monster before her, cursing at them.

“Insolent weaklings, I shall show you no mercy! I shall utterly vanquish every trace of you that has ever existed. Foul little weaklings, you shall fall so that I may perpetuate!” she stated finally shrinking back to a size which Skip and Amabel and their protectors could fight against.

They tried different strategies but fighting together proved most effective even as Maelstrom sprouted additional limbs to effectively fight against four opponents at once. She issued an ominous guttural squeal whenever one of their weapons or magic managed to wound her that was as unnerving as the stench of her aura, constantly nauseating them.

The heroes’ training they had endured clearly had not been enough to prepare them for the exhausting battle with the goddess but they bravely fought anyway, weakening Maelstrom with each successive strike. They, were, however, at their wit’s end and nearing their limit, something Maelstrom was well aware of and strived to induce so she could effectively defeat them.

“Surrender now and suffer a quick and merciful death. I give you my solemn promise. Lay down your weapons and submit to me,”

The heroes did not so much as contemplate her offer of surrender and prepared themselves to give their lives to destroying the fallen goddess. In the midst of their increasingly desperate efforts when Maelstrom appeared to be turning the tide of battle in their favor, the Sage of Light, Zariya appeared with her Protector, Ekene, appearing right beside her.

“No matter how many pawns she throws my way, I shall utterly defeat you all! Your efforts to defeat me are futile for I am unlike you. I am begotten not Created… I am your fate, your doom… You were created merely as a source of sustenance for me so submit yourselves willingly,” Maelstrom stated.

“You underestimate the power of the Creator, Maelstrom. Did you think She would abandon us especially now that we have all become united in prayer? Do you think it nothing short of miraculous that we, mere Created beings as you call us, are able to wound you and are equally matched with you?” Zariya boldly proclaimed.

“This world was made for us by the Creator, not to perish nor serve as food for you in your insatiable greed for souls- but so that we may worship Her and live the lives She Willed,”

“Hope is a foolish emotion in this instance daughter of Romina. Fate shall play out as was meant to and you shall see the truth of my decree,” Maelstrom countered.

“The Creator has tolerated your presence in this Reality for long enough. Your foul deeds hath incurred Her Wrath. Woe unto thee, desolate, fruitless creature. Had your heart not turned against Uma, perhaps you could have been great in your Reality, and it might have flourished and sustained you all. Yet you turned against her and as a result, doomed yourselves to your accursed fate,”

“How dare you speak of her? She was destroyed because of her weakness. My great father, Ull, is the greatest of all gods to exist because he seized power for himself unlike that foolish slain goddess… It is hard to believe that She was Unbegotten as my father Ull,”

“Destiny, it appears, is an inescapable fate bestowed upon all, great and small. Now then, suffer the fate you have wrought upon your miserable state-” Zariya stated.

The Sage was suddenly surrounded by several Messengers and together with them conjured up chains that soon imprisoned Maelstrom. Their continual efforts were enough to keep Maelstrom down.

“Great Heroes, now is your chance! Smite the unholiest of all creatures now and save your worlds in Her blessed name!” muttered one of the Messengers as Maelstrom flailed about feebly to escape her fate.

“Amabel, are you ready?” Skip asked her.

Amabel simply nodded and together, they issued a last battle cry before smiting the goddess Maelstrom who fell to their weapons.

Soon afterwards, the god-killers that they used collected the remaining malevolent energy left by the goddess and contained them before imploding and disappearing for all time.

“Is it… over?” Skip asked the Sage of Light.

She looked up the surface of the water which finally cleared and smiled then nodded. “It would appear so. The Messengers will tie up any loose ends left,”

“So…we did it? We defeated a goddess?” Amabel asked shaking her head in disbelief.

“As was written, you did, Lady Amabel,”

Amabel sighed in relief. “Good. Seriously, I need to stop being a hero now, it’s ruining my reputation,” she stated.

In light of everything that had happened, they could laugh at the irony of Amabel’s words. Meanwhile, she turned to look at Kenzo Blake and wondered if their bond would seemingly vanish since she had accomplished her mission.

“The Protector’s Bond is eternal, Amabel. It shall remain in effect for all time,” Sage Zariya merrily reported.

“Well then, if you’ll excuse me, I’d like to end this little hero’s quest. After all, history has shown that not even saving the world from Armageddon once is enough to get acquitted on all previous misdeeds,”

“I mean, you could turn over a new leaf though, right, Amabel?” Skip asked her optimistically.

“We’ll see,” she stated with a wave and then both she and Kenzo both disappeared from sight.

“Should we go after her, my lady?” Maris asked the Sage wearily.

The Sage shook her head. “She may come around but for now, I’d advice you take some rest. Fighting a goddess was no easy fete more so for a pregnant woman. Congratulations, by the way,”

“Oh, thank you, my lady,” Maris stated blushing.

“I look forward to seeing you all at the Royal Banquet. Queen Denise shall host us,”

“It shall be our honor, my lady,” stated Skip with a reverent bow. The Sage smiled and waved goodbye as she and her Protector disappeared. Shortly afterwards, Skip and Maris returned to their family to ensure they were safe given everything that had come to pass.

TO BE CONTINUED…

And so the goddess Maelstrom falls at last… Shall this be the beginning of a new lease of life for the Lady of the Placid Lake? Is this the last plague that the collective Reality shall face or is there more in store for our heroes? Stay tuned to find out. Previous parts are linked below:

  1. The Lake Guardian: Part 1
  2. Part 2
  3. Part 3
  4. Part 4
  5. Part 5
  6. Part 6
  7. Part 7

2 thoughts on “The Lake Guardian

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