The Mirus collapsed to the ground, exhausted and beaten nearly to death by his
opponent. But suddenly, light rippled across his form, and he stirred, rose to his feet, and seemed to find new strength. His eyes now balefully glowing a pale spectral green.
The bloodied and bruised face now bore a mocking and predatory grin, surgically
implanted fangs showing in a display of utter satisfaction with the situation. Something was terribly, terribly wrong. He, no, they, spat blood to their left as the medical functions of the hypershard repaired the damage to their body, bones clicking into place and resetting as tissue mended. Dasaelos stepped back a pace from what had seemed an easy victory, and the death of yet another of these upstart godlings of Earth. His suddenly no-longer vanquished opponent sized him up, as if seeing him for the first time. What is going on? The giant thought to himself. He was now getting very, very unsure of his chances of winning this fight. “Mirus?” His bass rumbling voice quavered just a bit in his uncertainty.
“Sorry, pal, but the Mirus has gone bye-bye for the moment, so you’re stuck with us instead. I am – we are, me and my hypershard together – the Magnus. Let’s get down to business, shall we? We’re sure it will be so much fun, even more fun than tearing you apart with our bare hands. Right now, we’re feeling a bit peckish, and you look like just the thing to feed on. There’s plenty of usable matter in that Brobdingnagian body of yours, Godzilla.”
“Feed on?! Have you lost your senses?” Dasaelos stammered, now confused and suddenly frightened. “No, just our humanity, such as that was, at least for the moment. The Mirus was weak, sentimental, unwilling to just kill you and be done with it. He’s overburdened with a conscience toward lunatics like you. He looked down on you, pitied you, underestimated you. He treated you like you can be reasoned with. We won’t make that same mistake.”
“Say goodbye, big guy. In your next life, make sure you think twice before crossing paths with us again.” The Magnus were serious about the ‘next life’ part. Dasaelos was a serial immortal, with plenty of cloned bodies in stock to replace this one. The Mirus – sorry, the Magnus – opened their mouth wide as the Rj’lt’ar giant took several more paces backward and then turned to run. The same pale green radiance that shone from the Magnus’ eyes now did so from their open mouth, jaws nearly distending as a lance of cold light shot forth from it, striking the alien warlord, enveloping his form, and fading as his body was reduced to a quark-gluon plasma and fundamental particles with even stranger properties, the whole vaporous mass being sucked into a pocket dimension outside of this region of space-time.
The Magnus gave a rude, hearty belch, their hunger stated, their spent energy reserves replenished. The clink of metal, of a translucent ring, still intact, glowing with its own light, unperturbed by the dissolution of the finger that wore it, sounded as it had fallen and struck a nearby stone. The Magnus closed their eyes, and their features softened a bitas the Mirus persona once again became dominant, once again his eyes returning to their normal Cerenkov blue glow. He strode over to the ring as it lay on the ground before him, picked it up, and handed it to one of Dasaelos’ lieutenants. “I know what this is, and I know what it does. Take it and begone. Remember to tell your master when he’s back never to set his hobnailed boots on any orbital body of this star system again. This system is protected, and he is not welcome.”
The Rj’lt’ar landing party winked out in the cerulean blue afterglow of a teleport
nimbus, on their way home. The Mirus stood there for a moment, looking to the stars above. Then, he rose skyward, riding the gravity well to orbit where his vessel, the Emulael Enza, waited. As he did so, he heard the faint whisper of his hypershard’s data flow, now fully aware of his new darker persona. And deep in the recesses of his mind, the Magnus smiled and winked to their outward self.
Someday, when they were needed, they would be back.
Copyright © Troy David Loy, 2018