Monster of the Mountain I

Monster of the Mountain I

Monster of the Mountain I is Epic

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The gale was relentless. Driving hard upon them from the giant mountain ranges looming just to the north, the wind's icy grip was filled with persecution. Shoruk could almost see the pitiless gale piercing through his men as though it were bent on extracting fragments of their life essence from their bodies. But they had to push on while the overcast day still had light, for behind them advanced something far worse than the bitterly cold wind.

An occult group called 'The Sacrificers' had come upon their trail and were now pursuing Shoruk and his men who, whilst looking back down into the valley, noticed from afar that they were being followed. A remorseless group of savages who are easily identified by their completely black attire, the Sacrificers subscribe to a belief that life is just a painful and avoidable process that occurs before moving onto a higher plane of existence they refer to as 'The true continuance'. They take it upon themselves to liberate people from the pain of this life and transferring them to continuance by killing them in the name of utmost duty. Shoruk's men were as battle-hardy as they came but, being a troupe of only six, they would not last long against the large pack of Sacrificers who specialized in vanquishing people into non-existence.

Shoruk knew that they had to deviate from their current course to try and lose their pursuers. They had to take another route, one which he had originally planned on steering well clear of. As they hastily approached the foot of the blizzard-shrouded mountains, Shoruk stopped, looking up at the ominous undertaking that lay before them.

"We must venture the Haeylon pass!" yelled Shoruk through the wind. The men stopped simultaneously and looked at one another, their expressions daunted. Shoruk's right-hand man, Nosk, dashed forward to Shoruk's side. "We may die if we try to take the pass!" said Nosk, his eyes filled with concern.

Shoruk nodded and then turned to face Nosk who stared back at him as if to bring reason back to his captain through his gaze. "We will die for certain, Nosk, if we don't take the pass." Nosk hesitated. His trust could only be earned, not given, and Shoruk had certainly earned his trust a thousand times over. The thought of being overwhelmed by a death-obsessed cult also did not appeal to him in any way, either.

"Trust me, Nosk. I would not walk Haeylon if it could be avoided, but even our troupe, mighty as we are, could not stand long against the evil ones." After a moment's consideration, Nosk nodded in solemn agreement. "May you lead us away from trouble as you always have," said Nosk, nodding his head with deep respect for his captain.

They started making their way up the precarious mountainside with the wind now carrying stinging flakes of snow in its midst. After an hour's travel, one of the older men, Gribbon, stopped to take a look around at the weather-lashed environment.

"Do you all mind the tales of the great monster that 'as been seen dwelling in these mountains? You know the one, 'Ogandor' the eight-foot-tall abomination, white as a fresh blanket of snow but with huge, green fangs!" Gribbon's close comrade, Lorth, shook his head at Gribbon's musings. "Spoke to a salt merchant a day's travel from 'ere about a year ago, said there hasn't been a sighting of it for a good long while."

"Good. That's the last thing we'd need to contend with on this forsaken mountain!" muttered the seasoned warrior as Lorth chuckled nearby.