I realise now that my brain, or rather my fancy new antennae, were telling me that I was about to have my legs bitten off in a savage and painful manner by a large creature emerging from the murky waters to my left.
Unfortunately I was simply unable to process the information quickly enough. I mean, when you start receiving sensory messaging from the future, it kind of wigs you out a bit. Up until this pointy my new antennae had only been providing me with a mild buzzing sensation. When it lit up so suddenly I was momentarily overwhelmed. So much so that even though I knew I was about to leg my legs chomped off, it still happened!
The offender is a rather large hippo looking creature with rough leathery skin and a moss covered shell that had been visible above the water line, looking for all the world like a hump of dirt, much like any of the others.
Now the damn fatty looks decidedly smug as I fall to one side, cursing internally and triggering my healing gland. The cold fluid floods my system, rushing to the site of my lost limbs which begin to regrow at an almost visible pace and I scramble with my four remaining legs to get myself clear of the monster.
[MASTER?!] Crinis shrieks, [What happened?!]
["Ambush! Fat Hippo thing on the left! I've lost a couple of legs, cover for me!"] I shout.
My mind is overwhelmed by Crinis hysterical screaming as the little tennis ball on my back EXPLODES with tentacles that start seeking towards the left side, latching onto and tearing at the Hippo-Turtles face at breakneck speeds.
Irritated at the sudden retaliation, the hippo rises out of the water and charges towards us at surprising speeds. Fast! Huge! FAT!
The monster is much larger than I'd first thought and certainly more bizarre! Small piggy eyes and those adorable little flappy ears sit above a typical broken toothed, oversized hippo mouth. The head extends out from under a thick, dome shaped shell on the end of a long turtle neck. The entire thing rests upon four squat hippo legs that pump at a rapid pace as the huge monster dashes out of the water, grunting angrily as Crinis continues to shriek at it and tear at its face.
As the beast runs towards me the ground is rumbling under my feet! I push with all of my might but I can't activate dash without all of my legs! Great time to learn that! Thanks skill! Come on legs, regenerate quick or I'm going to be building a more intimate relationship with this dirt that I was quite prepared for. Just before I get stomped into ant pate and served on crackers, Tiny dashes in from the side and meets the charging hippo with one shoulder.
The impact is colossal and the ground shudders under the impact of these two titans. As more of the creature emerges from the water I get a clearer picture of its size. Hippos are quite large creatures back on Earth, everyone knows that. Fast, big mouth, plump grey skinned killing machines that like a swim. This guy is a touch larger. I'd say he's about the size of a minivan.
You hear what I'm saying?
[Crinis! You need to try and get at his legs! Buy me a little time!]
My smaller pet, she of the ink chainsaw, is still screeching a the monster. Her earlier wordless hollering has given way to a deafening tirade that promises endless violence in the most graphic terms I can imagine. So caught up in her blood red diatribe is she, that I'm not even sure he heard what I said.
In any event, as the Hippo Turtle rights itself and recovers its balance after being knocked aside by Tiny, Crinis gradually begins to transfer her tentacles away from the monsters face where, despite her most violent effort, minimal damage has been done.
Not only is the shell tough as nails, it seems the skin aint no slouch either.
[Go hard Tiny! This guy look tough!]
"ROOOOO!" Tiny bellows, the fire blazing bright in his eyes.
He's ready to go!
Fists sparking, the ape launches himself into the air and brings both fists down in his patented ape smash, directly onto the hippo turtles shell. The flabby beast grunts as all of the air is forced out of its body in a whoosh and it slams belly first into the ground.
Electricity flows out of Tiny and into the beast, stunning it momentarily as lightning crackles over its shell and leathery skin. Snarling, the beast forces its feet back under it and turns to engage the offending ape, snapping at him with those huge jaws.
Why does everything around here have to have such large mouths?
Whilst my pets engage the monster in brutal battle I bravely continue to crawl through the dirt as my missing limbs slowly regenerate. It's been ages since I lost a leg dammit! This hippo is going to pay!
As Tiny continues to trade blows with the beast, his fists snapping that head left and right and sending shockwaves through its long neck, Crinis busies herself with ripping into the legs, trying to saw her way through the thick skin is taking a long time though.
"Vibrant! Give it some acid, aim for the neck!"
The ant soldier had been waiting for the opportune moment to engage in the fight, not willing to obstruct Tiny is his battle. With my instructions given she proudly presents an ants best feature and begins to blast the enemy with her potent acid!
Four shots in total land on that long neck and begin to sizzle away pleasantly. The big monster groans in pain but cannot now turn away from the ape in front of it as he grows more and more aggressive, his fist swinging faster with every moment.
I hastily whip up the spell and blast it out, hoping to assist my pets in their work. Unerringly, thanks to my skills, the bolt strikes home on the creature, directly behind its head. I've seen this before. When the bolt his a creature of sufficient size it doesn't just increase the gravity of the whole monster but rather drags down the body part that is hit.
In this instance, the fatty is instantly effected by a strong dragging force that wants to pull its head down into the dirt. Tiny takes advantage of the hippo's distraction to step it and smash a few punches directly into his opponents face.
I pile more spells onto the now struggling monsters neck, removing its ability to attack quite so swiftly with its jaws. Unwilling to suffer from the torture of the apes fists any longer, the hippo turtle begins to withdraw its head back into shell.
You can also do that?!
I hate this monster… so much.
[Get that leg Crinis!]
[Fall you filthy beast! Become food for the Master!]
With a horrible ripping sound, those countless tentacles twist and writhe before eventually completing their task and crippling the hippos front left leg.
Hah! How do you like it?!
As the beast falls to one side, this time for good, the assault is renewed. Crinis moves to another leg as Tiny begins to lay into the shell like it’s a punching back, eventually cracking the hard outer layer with every punch.
Vibrant judges that the time is right and leaps forward to engage with her mandibles, chipping away at the beast.
By the time my legs are sufficiently healed that I can walk on them the creature has been brought down.