Phantom Host

Karin: Lord Damiyen\'s Bizarre Tale

A chilling silence occurred as the girl named Axina stared long at the last body to the left on that platform. Now that Karin observed closely, the flayed body had a different shape than the others. With the round whiteness in the breast areas among red muscles and the wide hips, it was obvious that the body belonged to a female.

The silence produced a shivering of sorts when the flayed female body spoke in a grating tone, ”A-x-i-n-a-a-a- ”

The silence seemed to lengthen. A dark shadow fell over Axinas face, and she uttered uncertainly, ”Mother? ”

”A-a-a-a-a-h! ” groaned the flayed woman in response.

”Mommy! ”

Axinas scream ripped through the air of the city square. She leaped onto the platform, dashed to, and embraced her skinless mother.

”A-a-a-a-a-h! ” the flayed woman began trembling and groaning.

”Mommy! Mommy! ” Axina cried as she hugged her mother desperately.

Karin was transfixed as she watched the transpiring nightmare. She was snapped awakened by the roaring laughter issuing from her left. She looked with surprise as her absolute seniors were dying as they laughed, Marshal Vala, Major Fioz, Captain Entum, and… Karin was surprised again to find her maestro not joining them, instead, Lynch was shaking! Hed put the skull mask back on his face, his head drooped over his chest, and his fists were clenched, and dripping blood as his nails punctured the skin over his palm, he was clenching so hard!

”Ah-ha! Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! ” Fioz moved forward, shaking with laughter. ”Yes! Hug her tighter, dumb girl! He-he-he! ”

The flayed woman was still groaning as Axina hugged her in her frenzied state of mind.

Fioz said through his laughter as he hopped on the platform, ”Your mother has no skin. Therefore, all her nerves are exposed. Even the slightest touch feels like the burn of fire to her. So go ahead! Hug her more for me! I wanna see you experience all the pain this world has to offer! ”

Axina gasped and shot back as she let go of her mother. Then she stared in horror at the flayed woman who seemed to calm down, stopping her shivering and groaning.

Fioz burst into laughter again.

”Why? Why are you doing this? ” said the sobbing limbless man. ”How could you be so cruel? ”

Fioz stared at him with disbelief. Glee left, and anger came. His face grew red, and he failed to speak.

Marshal Vala hopped on the platform and stood in front of the limbless man.

”Have you forgotten your crimes, Lord Damiyen? ” Vala addressed the limbless man bound to the chair with chains.

”What crimes? What have we ever done to you? ” cried Damiyen. ”You came here and attacked us unprovoked! ”

”For the things youve done to us since as far as memories can remember, ” Vala said darkly, ”for those crimes you should receive whatever punishment we give you with your knees bent and an accepting heart. ”

”What in the name of Garganor are you talking about? ” Damiyen said.

”Of course, ” Vala said, ”why would you remember? You think of yourselves as the High Navari, and us, the Low Navari, less than animals. Why would anyone remember their crimes against animals? Or even consider their deeds as crimes? ”

”You
e all lunatics! ” Damiyen spat. ”All murdering psychopaths! ”

”Tell yourself that, ” said Vala, spreading her arms, ”And we want it that way, because you see, we can never speak of the crimes youve committed against us. They
e so heinous and degrading, remembering them causes us great suffering, we feel sorrow a thousand times worse than what your flayed wife is going through. Think of this as the whim of the god of this flat world sitting on the throne of Iaena! We are his hurricane sent to trample all! You
e in our way, and just having a bad day, nothing else. ”

”Go ** yourself, you witch! ” cursed Damiyen.

Vala sighed. ”Don you care about your wife and your brothers-in-law at all, my lord? Even flayed, theyll still be alive for a few more hours. You can put them out of their misery, you know? Just spill the beans! Tell us what you were cooking in this hidden city! ”

”Who are the other two, father? ” Axina demanded suddenly and miserably. ”One is my mother, the other one is uncle Brodin, who are the other two? ”

Damiyen remained silent.

”Tell me! ” Axina shouted.

”They would be your other uncles, little girl, ” Fioz said, laughing, ”Nathn Omrion and Johnath Omrion. ”

Axina screamed, broke down to the ground, and began hysterically wailing aloud.

Damiyen started sobbing again.

Vala leaned towards his face. ”How close are you to breaking, my lord? I have an urgent report to make, you see. Why don you tell me where you got the off-world technology from and what you intend to do with it? More importantly, where is it? ”

Damiyen closed his eyes and refused to speak.

Vala stood straight exhaling with exasperation.

”Nefer Dux! ” she cursed. ”How heartless could you be? ”

When Vala got no response, she waved her hand in the air and shouted, ”Entum! ”

Then she looked at Damiyen and said, ”Lets test then, how heartless you can be. ”

The entum captain appeared with two entum marchers following him carrying a cross stand. The captain pointed to a spot in front of Damiyen and they placed the stand there. The two marchers then scooped up Axina who thrashed around in protest, but she was tied to the ”X ” shaped stand the same as her loved ones. Her arms and legs were tied to each of the extensions of the cross.

”Stop you monsters! ” Damiyen yelled. ”What are you doing to the poor girl? Stop! ”

The entum captain brought a tiny skinner blade out of his robe and began peeling off Axinas clothes. Axina was stripped within seconds with the captains swift blade work.

Even Karin flinched seeing the disrobed child helplessly splayed out and chained up on the cross, anticipating what was coming.

Axinas mother groaned. Karin wondered if the flayed woman could sense the terrible fate that awaited her daughter.

”Stop it I said! ” Damiyen yelled madly. ”Stop this madness! Shes just a child! Does this cruelty not touch your iron heart? Have you no soul? ”

”My heart is warm and beating well, ” Vala replied without expression. ”It may seem like cruelty to you, but this deed doesn touch us at all. You people are nothing but monsters in our eyes. Why would we care what happens to a bunch of monsters? ”

Axina looked in horror as the entum captain channeled bright into the skinner blade making it glow blue and frighteningly sharp.

Damiyens head drooped over his chest at last.

”I understand, ” Damiyen said in a clear voice, ”Ill tell you everything. Don hurt the little girl. ”

The blade of the entum captain had almost touched the skin on Axinas ankle where hed wished to start the peeling. The marshals command came just in time so that the blade was pulled away.

”About time! Thank the gracious Dux! ” cried Vala. ”Now, my good lord, sing me all about the blueprints of the strange new technology weve found in your bunkers! ”

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