A Battle & A Quest

(c) in medias res by Melinda Kucsera

A Battle & A Quest

(If you missed a part of Quest, find it here on its TOC.
Picks up where A Nostalgic Quest, A Sunken Quest & A Midnight Quest left off.)

The empress of the Undeem’s cackle cut
off as light bloomed, a cherry among the ferns–
that’s the figure billowing seaweed cut–
not quite arborescent as Hen had learned.
Buoyant and turgescent, that light bobbed, wove
and flashed, hijacking sight with it’s white light.
Two forms fell through that flaming portal, dove
into the sea and came up sputtering, right
quick with the Anonymous Woman, whom
he’d not seen since she’d broken enchantments
most foul and here more vile magic loomed;
might she be that hoped for boon? Enchantment
held no power over her, she who scoffed
at old gods and to no one would she quaff.

~ ~ ~

“Are they friend or foe?” Chero asked, his girl
at his side, their wings a blur of color
as they hovered over the baby curled
on cold tile; a womanish thing, dark born,
flickering between Undeem and mortal,
flesh and shadow, belly-crawled to the babe.
She lay, a protective curl, a petal,
black as charred paper; she cradled the babe.
Chero’s girl, blue-winged Anasril, glanced down
at the piteous thing; understanding soon
softened her frown at the girl-thing’s torn gown.
No help from her, though no crying’s a boon.
Hen turned, inscribed a circle with his steps,
kept his bright sword pointed at shadow’s reps.

~ ~ ~

Anonymous woman tugged her beloved
Istan, who floated unmoving. New doubts
assailed her and deceived her heart that love
alone could mend damage from that damned bout
with the maelstrom; no shadow tendril
had followed them; she scanned as she advanced.

Laughter, maniacal, full of evil,
choked on its own ego as the truth lanced
it like a boil; anger binds better
than magic, keeping the old shrew silent.

“Why Imelda, what’s a poxy nutter
like you doing here?” with the compliant
Undeem, a brainless army, behind her…

“You twat–you slut for power! History’s
vile bitch, a wanderer with no story…”

~ ~ ~

Spittle flew as Imelda’s passionate
rant careened towards it’s conclusion–a name
once lost now pronounced as a curse, thrown straight
at woman anonymous, no more; names
that slammed gauntlets down and raised a challenge.

“–Irene!” The Undeem’s Queen paused and gulped air.
Her face matched her hibiscus dress; revenge
glared from coal eyes that visualize, bare
a soul hate blackened for a one-time friend.
That was all the warning Irene got ‘fore
Queennie Imelda went around the bend.
She slung black goo at Irene, ripped more gore
from her suddenly oil-slicked belly.
All that flying ichor was quite smelly.

~ ~ ~

“You never could stomach a real battle!”
the not-anonymous-woman, Irene,
bellowed as she dodged and launched a rattle.
The rattle elongated, sprouted green
spots and a snake head with fangs bared, dripping.

“Behind you!” a woman rasped and Hen spun.
He tripped o’er his feet as a black blur swung
in front; Chero tossed sparkling things that stunned.
The Undeem pawed at holes where their faces
should be and staggered around bumping things.
They’re solid, fightable in this dank place.

Anasril urged to rise the dark girl-thing;
the lost babe was clutched in arms inhuman,
yet gentle, with the eyes of a woman.

~ ~ ~

 A man groaned, held his head and sat up shocked
at what he saw for an instant, no more.
Then pow’r crackled in eyes that stormed, swirled, cocked
like canons ready to fire on poor
unsuspecting Undeem that he unbound.

“Istan!” Irene shouted, her relief plain
though short-lived as she transmuted a round
thing to a pear that she lobbed; she looked strained.

Another shout turned Hen, his sword scything
the Undeem in his path; cutting them in half
and multiplying their foes with his swing.
Nonliving things can exist well in half.
Those halves crowded in separating friends;
surrounded now, they could only defend…

~ ~ ~

The Quest continues tomorrow…

If you liked this, you’ll love:

Stars and Angels Sing

It’s an enthralling tale told in verse with a quest that centers on finding the heart of this winter season.

Buy it today:
eBook | Paperback
Read a Sample Chapter

~ ~ ~

A Battle & A Quest employed the following challenges: Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Wordle #96 & Color Your World: Fern.


11 thoughts on “A Battle & A Quest

    1. yes it does! I just finished writing that fight. Challenging indeed (especially in verse when characters don’t know each other’s names; introductions have to wait until later) but our heroes have a few tricks that may help. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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