"Make sure he doesn't leave this ship!", growled Koen to my servant Oahu.
I was barely strong enough to whisper between gasps as I leaned my back against the wall of the cabin and slowly slid to the floor. "I must..."
"NO! Don't you DARE inject yourself with reanimation fluid! Look what happened to ME!" He extended the claws of his hand. "Everything that was human in me died when you brought me back! Believe it or not, Doc, there's a saturation limit for that stuff. And you're ready to hit the wall."
"UNGRATEFUL? I can't even describe how you screwed things up for my other eight lives down there." By which, he meant the remnants of Erebus. "The Vortex is incomplete without me. He's unstable," he twirled his finger against his head. "I can feel it."
Koen glared at my neko servant with crimson eyes once more. "No more green stuff. I mean it." Koen crouched over me, His fangs were longer in his new form, sharp ivory pointing parallel from below his cleft lip.
"No more demon. No more."
With that, he vanished in a whirl of black smoke. I shook in a coughing fit for a good ten minutes while Oahu tried to get me to drink from a water skin. I pointed to the brandy instead.
I felt calmer a few minutes later. "He's right Oahu...it's an addiction itself. The steel cigar tube in the third drawer...I want you to throw it over..."
No light at the end of the tunnel. A straight fall to the flames. Roars and hisses echoed upwards even before I could see the Hydra snapping dozens of its jaws at me. No, not at me, and the shapes encircling it. How colossal the beast's true form was, that I mistook an armada of mighty aetherships for insects!
The navies encircled the monster like an angry swarm, hurling all manner of projectiles and rays at its hide. Vallhallan sky-drakkars ripped Mjolnir bolts of static charge across a landscape of shimmering black scales. A Heliopan Interceptor was ripped apart in a snap of the Titan's jaws, Horus's elite tumbled to their doom, only to be captured in air by brave winged infantry from the Council.
The Obsidian King would never have allowed foreign fleets over his skies. The very idea of calling for outside help was anathema to a self-isolated culture like the Ereb'ai. No one left in the city must have had authority or confidence to object. That alone told me the situation was truly dire.
Fastest of all was a red speck of flame. It weaved between the beast's massive writhing necks and jagged fields of fangs as well as dodging friendly fire. It threw jets of blinding red hellfire deep into wounds the ships were fortunate enough to inflict, preventing the monster from reknitting flesh or sprouting more deadly sets of jaws. Ignoring the pain from gazing, I made out the shape within - a neko with demon wings. The Vortex.
I saw a cavernous maw snapping down over him. A flash of green and suddenly the jaws were pried open by...a colossal green pipe? Yes...even Oa had a stake in this conflict. There were blue and violet sparks soaring through the chaos as well. Were they reserves?
In all the din and kaleidoscopic terror of battle one sound rang a pure note deep in my soul. My eyes tracked the shimmering rays of the Sephiroth to their source, soaring upwards from the formations aligned on the ground. A jawed appendage descended upon her, but she took no evasive action.
I screamed as Gematria was swallowed whole. Prismatic rays of the Sephiroth began to erupt through reptilian flesh in all directions...
I shuddered back to consciousness. Oahu held me down as I convulsed.
"I's sorry Doc! You heart done stopped! I couldn' do nuttin else!"
I looked to my side and saw the empty syringe rolling towards the cabin wall.
Oahu cowered in the corner as I rose.
"Izzat...you Doc? You no gon' hurt me is you?"
I shook my head as my wings spread as much as they could in the cramped quarters.
"You did what you thought was right. For all I know the Dragon Who Waits is still fighting my comerades in arms. If any of my companions have fallen from his evil magicks," I clenched my pale fist as my eyes began to glow red with a rage only a demon could fathom. "then the House of Bloodwing shall settle an old score!"