Aslan was having a bad dream. Images of his father's face morphing to his own, hands dragging him away to the abyss, his mother crying and screaming as she was torn away from his grasp. He suddenly jolted awake and looked at the ring of faces staring down at him.
He felt his cheeks stinging as if someone had slapped him hard several times. "Wh- what, where am I?"
"Finally awake, boy?" A gruff voice spoke over him and he tried to focus his eyes onto the speaker while feeling light headed. "Sit up, boy."
He tried to push himself up to a sitting position before realizing his hands were bound behind his back. "W- Who are you? Why did you tie me up?"
"Name. Tell me your name boy!" A rough voice spoke behind him and he tried to turn to face the speaker.
"A- Aslan," He replied and he slowly recalled what had happened in the Palace. "Wait... who are you all? Did you kidnap me from the Sultan?"
"Ha! Sultan?" Someone laughed with a strange accent. "Who's the Sultan?"
"Sultan Raman!" Aslan cried out using Raman's name as some sort of talisman against these bandits. "He's the king in these parts!"
"Damn fucker thinks he's a king?" The person with the strange accent spat. "Fuck that bugger!"
Aslan blinked his eyes as his mind slowly recovered. He started to notice details around him, like the sky seemed brighter and he was surrounded by almost a dozen men and the slave girl, Teresa was laying down next to him. How long was I knocked out, he wondered.
"How is she?" He tried to move himself to check on her but he couldn't make it. "Is she alright?"
"Yea, lover boy," One of the bandits replied. "Don't worry about your love. She's just sleeping."
"I see..." Aslan replied. "So you want ranson? I warn you first that the Sultan is not a forgiving man and he is very powerful!"
The men backlit by the dying embers of the campfire laughed and one of the men with a grizzly look to him said. "There are bigger problems now, Raman and his merry gang are... mostly gone..."
"Gone?" Aslan was more confused by their words. "Let us go! I make sure you get paid well!"
"Nah, we are not grabbing you for money," The man, clearly the leader of this group of bandits replied. "Tell me, what is your role or position with the Sultan? What do you work as?"
"I..." Aslan clams his mouth shut, "No, I will not tell you anything till you release me and her and promised us safe passage back to Sin City!"
"Well, that we can't do..." The man replied. "Well, you see, Sin City... is no more!"
UNS Singapore, Captain's Quarters
Blake frowned as the report came in from Orwell's Point regarding the situation that was unfolding at Sin City. "So Claymore One has accounted for five confirm kills and two probable?"
Tavor of Naval Intel nodded, "Yes, Sir. There is also a report of a confirmed target that was found in the vicinity of the site of the Hero's remains. That makes six of the eight."
"One of the deserters is suspected to be in the Treasury when the bombs fell," Tavor continued. "Also the last deserter's situation is unknown after the appearance of the Giant Serpent that is destroying the City now."
"So we got at least one target still alive that's running around digging up the remains of the Hero?" Blake kept his frown on.
"Yes, Sir," Tavor replied. "I took the liberty to assign assets closest to the target to take him out."
"Good," Blake nodded. "Now, what do we know of this snake that's rampaging at Sin City?"
"Unclear, Sir," Tavor said. "So far the information we getting from the field reports that the deserters called it the Great Serpent. We have the School checking the libraries and databases for any references to a Great Serpent."
"Damn, just when we needed Thorn and Sharon, and both of them are away at Orwell's Point," Blake rubbed his face. "So it's confirmed to be some God?"
"Yes, as of this time," Tavor nodded. "Claymore One is already extracted and en route towards Orwell's Point for some rest and resupply. I would recommend sending them back later to observe the situation happening at Sin City."
"We need to be able to keep constant eyes on the Serpent's movement," Tavor said.
Blake sighed and ordered, "Task the UAV at Orwell's Point to keep track of it. I want to know its every action, even if it shits or pees!"
"Yes, Sir!" Tavor replied.
"What do we know of the city's population?" Blake asked.
"We estimated its numbers to be around ten thousand max," Tavor said.
Blake rubbed his eyes before responding, "Is there anything we can do to help those people?"
"No, sir," Tavor shook his head. "Regretfully, we have no assets within the area of operations that can handle the Serpent. The Airforce has even reported that the dragons were afraid of even going near that city."
"What?" Blake was surprised. "Even Rastraz?"
"Yes, even the ancient dragon is afraid of that Serpent," Tavor said. "This proves that that being is way more powerful than the Hero we fought and defeated."
"Sometimes, I wish that we have a tactical nuke onboard or even a bloody orbital satellite to bomb the shit out of these Gods..." Blake sighed. "And our railgun is out of alignment to even fire at that direction and angle."
"I need you and the general staff to plan out contingency plans and even evacuation plans," Blake said. "In case that thing heads our way. I got a feeling that it wanted not the Hero's remains but the stuff that the Hero was carrying and that goddamn thing is in our hands."
Tavor nodded, "It will be done. I will also post more men to ensure the artifact is properly secured and if needed, transported away and destroyed."
"Good, make it so," Blake gave his agreement.
After Tavor left his office, Blake called up both the Marine CO and the Airforce CO. "Alright, I think you guys roughly know the shitstorm that is happening right now?"
Both Officers nodded in the display screen. "Good, so I will cut it short. I got the General Staff and Intel to work out contingency and evacuation plans in case of that God Serpent come knocking on our doors."
"I want your men to be on full standby for now, all units to be fully prepped and loaded for bear," Blake ordered. "We killed a Hero before, now we will kill a God!"
After briefing and ordering his men, Blake leaned back on his chair and frowned.
"This is a goddamn calamity!"
"Like I said," Corporal Drake gestured vaguely in the general direction of the forest. "Just follow the trail of bodies and it will lead you to their camp!"
Third Sergeant Sath, mech commander of the 1st Armor, Unit 02 sighed. "I know, but it's damn hard to spot the bodies in this damn forest!"
Drake squeezed his way past the cramp quarters of the gun turret and hunkered down next to Sergeant Sath peering at his view screens. "Say... Slow, erm, you know the way?" He turned and asked the Orc who was keeping himself as small as possible in the tight passenger compartment that was filled to the brim with extra supplies, leaving only enough room for two men to sit.
"I need to see the land..." Slow replied from his uncomfortable position.
"Alright..." Sath sighed again. "Clove, full stop."
The mech rumbled to a halt and lowered its main hull to the ground. Slow squeezed his way out from the top compartment hatch and hopped down to the ground and stretched himself.
"So how?" Sath called out from the commander's hatch. "Think you can find the correct way?"
He and his crew got assigned this special mission from HQ of chasing down the enemy Orcs and the hooman traitor just this morning. The 1st Armor CO decided to only send one unit with the two Marines to go hunt their target down, as he deemed the protection of the Convoy more crucial due to the series of increasing monsters attacks they encountered along the way.
The wheeled and tracked vehicles were mostly bogged down by the roots of the thick trees that required the engineers to blow up before they could proceed forward.
At the start, every one of Unit 02 was excited to go kick ass, but now, it seemed like they are lost. He watched the Orc Marine sniffed the air and paced around the Mech before pointing to one direction.
"You sure?" Sath asked. "We are already quite lost, I don't wanna get bogged down in the middle of nowhere!"
The Orc nodded confidently and climbed onto the small ASAG that was following them, "Follow, I lead."
"Well, let's move out then!" Sath said and the Mech jerked forward while he buttoned up as the tree branches scraped against the hull once the Mech moved forward, keeping pace behind the tiny ASAG which skittled across the forest like a spider.
Slow sat on Asagi and pointed the way as he used his superior sense of smell, tracing the scent of Orcish blood against the smells of the forest. Finally, they managed to trace back their route when they were fleeing from the Orcs and they set off towards finding the enemy's camp.
The once bustling city was in ruins, the Palace and the Inner City built by the blood and sweat of thousands of slaves laid destroyed and charred by the bombs and napalm dropped by the UN Airforce.
The fire had raged throughout the night, fueled by the wooden structures and flammable materials in the Armory and Factory. When dawn came, the fires died down after consuming more than half of the Inner City.
The rest of the city fared no better as a godly being had torn through the entire place in search of prey. It feasted on the running slaves and those hiding inside the Palace before moving out to the Inner City. Those Orcs brave enough to stand before it all ended up as a meal source.
The Great Serpent reared its triangular hooded head up high and glared at the hateful Sun. Its flint like scales appeared to absorb the light from the sun while tiny tendrils of smoke rose from its body.
Another mud building collapsed as a mighty muscled Serpent's body rolled over it as it spied something inside. The hiding inhabitants screamed in terror and tried to crawl their way out of the rubble only to be snatched up by the Serpent and swallowed whole.
It has rampaged throughout the City till dawn broke, hunting and feasting on the energy of the souls. The low forms had tried to destroy it a couple of times, spewing those pitiful burning hot spells at its mighty form and they all became its meal in the end.
The Serpent hissed happily as its shadow body grew more and substantial, the wisps of smoke from the leaking of its material body lessening as its hold to this realm solidified more with each soul eaten. Even with the hateful Sun shining down from the skies, its body managed to maintain its form as long as it has enough energy.
It sniffed around the ruins of the City, fishing here and there for more tasty souls before it turned its eyes to the thick life energy that was gathering just beyond the low lives city and its jaws widened hungrily.
First, it must feast till it can sustain its form indefinitely before it can go hunt for that hated God and devour its power for itself and it will be finally reborn into this realm fully!
But for now, it has to devour more!