Windhammer, Copyright Wayne Densley 2008 All Rights Reserved


The sounds of voices are louder now as you approach the far end of the cavern. Still too indistinct to be able to identify, but definitely coming from the tunnel ahead. Overhead, the brilliant points of light start to move together, surging in a flowing pattern of waves, concentrating slowly as you watch into a single orb of blue light that gathers far above your head. Within the cathedral-like atmosphere of this subterranean cave the slow motion of the orb throws a myriad of shadows about the cavern, transforming the space from a quiet series of rock formations into something that appears as if it is moving, even alive.
As you stand mesmerised by this strange display your boot nudges something on the ground in front of you. Looking down you see a large stone, strangely shaped but somehow recognisable. In the gloom you reach down to pick it up and with it in your hand you see what it really is. It is a skull, cleaned of all flesh and pierced by hundreds of small puncture marks.
From above a high-pitched screech jerks you upright. Readying your sword you scan the cave, trying to find the source of the unnatural sound, but the only movement comes from the glowing orb. Slowly it descends towards you, spinning and twisting as it falls, changing shape and taking on a redder hue as its speed increases. Suddenly the orb explodes, a silent eruption of many points of light that begin to swirl around your position. They stay far enough away that they are outside your sword's reach, but close enough to make the hair stand up at the back of your neck.
You try to move towards the tunnel exit and the swarm moves with you, they will not allow you to leave. Desperately you search your memory trying to remember anything you may have heard about these strange lights. Unfortunately you do not have long enough to consider your position before the swarm attacks.
A searing pain in your left calve makes you spin to face what must be an attacker. There is nothing there, but as you look down at your leg you see the source of the pain. An insect the size of your fist, with a strange glowing abdomen, has latched onto your leg and has jabbed a long needle-like proboscis deep into the muscle. It looks like it is drinking your blood. Striking at it with your sword you knock it to the ground and stamp it to mush. From the swirling cloud more of the insects dive, hitting you in the shoulder and arms, trying to find a way inside your clothing. These insects you also crush but this only sends the cloud of swirling insects into a frenzy. There is no way you can fend off the attack that follows. Unable to stand under the hammering you receive from the diving insects you fall on to one knee and try to lash out at the swarm with your sword. Dozens of the insects fall, cleaved into pieces by its blade's sharp edge, however the numbers inevitably overwhelm you. Writhing under a blanket of drinking insects you die. The secret of this cave will remain safe for the arrival of the next unsuspecting victim.
Here your quest ends, your life taken on the points of a thousand razor-sharp needles. Perhaps in a latter life Fate will afford you better luck.

This book, and its associated books and other documents in the Chronicles of Arborell series are the intellectual property of the author, Wayne F Densley, and all rights are reserved by him. Windhammer is best viewed at 1024 x 768 resolution. Any questions regarding the Chronicles of Arborell can be answered by emailing the author at densleyw@shoal.net.au
Windhammer, Copyright Wayne Densley 2008 All Rights Reserved