Shadow Fall: Chapter 7: Sever

After about 12 hours had passed, Pudgy soon found himself being awoken by the panicked noises of the dinosaurs.  As the little hedgehog sat up and rubbed away the sleep from his eyes, he could see dark clouds floating above the peak in the sky.  There were visible flashes of light in the clouds, “oh boy …looks like a thunderstorm.”  The hedgehog stood up and stretched, turning to see a group of spacesuit clad dinosaurs hissing and clawing at the controls to try to get back inside the base through the hexagonal airlock doors.  The doors were remaining tightly shut, despite their protests.  Large droplets of rainwater started to fall from the sky, so Pudgy looked up and opened his mouth.  Wiggling and bouncing, the cool rain was a welcome respite from the hot arid conditions of the desert mountain peak.  

8K had at first fallen into line with the other dinosaurs, who were fearful of the skies.  But when he spotted Pudgy wiggling and bouncing with his mouth open, the young tyrannosaurus was intrigued.  Slowly he walked over, and with a few strides, he was close to the hedgehog.  “Happy day to you Pudgy, what are you up to?”  The little hedgehog waved, “happy day to you 8K.  Pudgy so glad it is raining, this place needs water so badly.”  The dinosaur grinned, and watched as the critter started catching raindrops in his mouth occasionally and swallowed.  Wondering if he could do the same, 8K positioned his head upwards and opened his mouth.  The skies had only increased their deluge of falling water, so the young dinosaur was able to gather enough water for a taste.  The water tasted pure, so hesitantly he shut his mouth and swallowed.  

The dimetrodon science team Lead Claw walked up slowly beside his subordinate.  “8K, how does the …. sky water …. taste.”  Pudgy raised his paw, “it’s called rain.”  The Lead Claw nodded, “I will make note of that.  The cool water does feel good though, and I suspect it may affect the local plant life in this region.”  8K nodded, “the ….rain … tastes good.”  Pudgy nodded, “back in Pudgy forest, the rains are much harder.  Sometimes they might last all day, and all night.  Cobalt would tell Pudgy about the one time it rained for 4 straight days.  Everything was flooded, with water so deep, Pudgy could not get across.  But in the winter came the snow, which is frozen rain.”  The dimetrodon looked at Pudgy, “frozen rain?  Do you mean the white areas we would see on the planet were frozen water that fell from the skies?”

The hedgehog nodded once more, “yes in places like this and Pudgy home, winter is really cold.  The water freezes in the air, and then falls as white fluffy snow.  The worst snow Pudgy ever saw was when Pudgy lived with Cobalt.  He had snow that was all the way to his waist, or about seven Pudgy high.”  8K nodded while looking down to watch and listen to what Pudgy was saying, “oh my.  This …winter …does not sound like a hospitable time at all.”  The little critter shook his head, “no it is not.  It is so cold, Pudgy has to wear warmer clothes.  Sometimes it is best just to stay in Pudgy’s home, and sit next to the fireplace.  Pudgy would have to go out to gather firewood though, and would worry about Pudgy good friend Mr. Dinosaur in his cave up the hill from Pudgy home.  Cobalt and Pudgy made him a heater, but Mr. Dinosaur went away.  Pudgy hopes he is doing ok, wherever he wanders off to?”

The Lead Claw turned to Pudgy, “Mr. Dinosaur?  Wait, you mentioned him once before, the last time you visited us.  We sent an exploratory vessel to Pangea to retrieve him.  He’s currently inside …”  The little hedgehog wiggled his nose and bounced happily, “is he doing all right?”  8K looked a bit sheepish, “well … I think he is in the holding cells.”  Pudgy looked confused, while the Lead Claw sighed. “When he returned to our base … he was ….colorful.”  The young tyrannosaurus nodded, “colorful as in … he told off the Daedlus Claw….  Needless to say …the undisputed leader of our society had some ….words.”  The little critter looked a bit sad, “Mr. Dinosaur was always very boastful of how much better dinosaurs were than humans.  Cobalt still treated him well, he was our friend.  Pudgy hosted many wonderful parties, where he would come for dinner.”

The two science team members nodded, and watched as the rain started to slowly cease to fall.  The whole area seemed refreshed, and it was a bit easier to breathe, since there was still moisture in the air.  The scant grass that surrounded the area, instantly started to change colors to a slightly less brown color.  In time, the Razar stopped panicking, and cautiously spread out to investigate the area around the pyramid’s exterior.   Pudgy pointed to the Razar, “why were they not allowed back inside?”  8K nodded, “we are the advance scouts.  The interior has been sealed to ensure the safety of all those inside.  Based on preliminary results … it would seem this world is hospitable.  Though …I am not sure this place is the best of locations to reside?”  The Lead Claw nodded, “it is good for now, a place to research.  We can scout for better locations, with more resources available.”

Pudgy wiggled his nose, “Pudgy sure if you ask nicely, the other animals will let you move nearby.”  One of the Razar walked over and smirked, “ask?  This is our home …our birthright.  This world was made for our kind alone!  We will take back the land, and restore our empire once more!”  The other Razar hissed in agreement, and a dull guttural laughter spread throughout the area.  The hedgehog wiggled his nose, and the words of the Mother of all Bears started to reoccur in his mind.  The hedgehog started to whimper, but noticed the raptor started to twitch involuntarily.  The other Razar turned, and watched as the boastful dinosaur started to float off the ground.  She frantically started to kick her hind legs, and wailed, “WHAT IS HAPPENING TO ME?”  Higher and higher the frantic creature was floating into the sky, until finally it stopped about halfway up the pyramid’s height.  

Without warning, the  Razar was then thrust hard downwards until the dinosaur smashed into the rocky ground.  The creature was flattened like a pancake, as if a tremendous weight had been dropped on top of it.  There was no blood, and with little fanfare, the creature began to crumble into a fine white dust.  With a slight breeze blowing, the ashes were scattered on the wind to join the other sandy areas of the peak.  The dinosaurs froze, and Pudgy wiggled his nose once more.  While looking up to 8K, “Pudgy remembers what Mamma Bear told him, about the ancient animals who lived on this world.”  The young tyrannosaurus was shaken, soft green eyes wide as he looked at where his former compatriot once laid.  Then turning his gaze to Pudgy, “what …what did the Bear Mother tell you?”

The little hedgehog began to explain the story of what the Mother of all Bears told him about the dinosaurs.  As both science team members listened, the Razar started to form a circle around the spot where their former member had perished.  While silently standing, they listened intently to the hedgehog’s tale.  The descriptions of their society was extremely lacking, but the terrible calamities that befell their kind were spot on.  The dimetrodon nodded, “yes that story is almost right, but there are some missing parts.  The Razar was … inartful… in her response.  The Great Spirit is always listening …judging ….I hope he will deem us time to prepare properly for his arrival?”  8K looked down at his superior, “Unetlanvhi … will be coming …. here?”  Pudgy wiggled his nose, and looked around the area.  The skies were starting to darken, as night was approaching.  The clouds were thinning as the rain clouds headed to the south east, and in the distance the moon could be barely seen ascending over the horizon.

As Pudgy stared into the eastern skies, far above them in the pyramid’s central command chamber, there was turmoil.  The Daedlus was roaring, and was in a wicked mood.  The other dinosaurs had their heads ducked down, or curled up in fear at their stations.  Many tense moments passed, until the gigantic Tyrannosaurus calmed and looked out at the quivering room full of his kind.  “Is that what you all think?  We will be coming back to Pangea, and it would be the same as when our kind had escaped?  We have been in exile for how many generations?  Was I not clear?  Do I need to …..repeat…MYSELF?”  The Daedlus’s voice boomed, echoing throughout the empty corridors that led to their command room.  His eyes were burning bright, almost glowing silver, and scanned the room as the frightened dinosaurs shook their heads.  “Open all channels, I want my voice to be in every place where one of our kind might be.”

The communications dinosaurs nodded and started to press the colored buttons on their control platforms.  One by one, the communication devices were turned on, and each station signaled with their claws when the broadcast was ready.  The Daedlus Claw took a breath, “I am sure by now word had spread throughout our home … of recent developments outside.  We have lost our first Razar, when she boasted that we were here to reclaim our birthright.  The great Spirit deemed her unworthy, and dispatched without warning nor mercy.  Purge from your hearts and minds, any notion of conquering this world.  We are ghosts from the ancient past, and need to make amends for what our ancestors have wrought upon this world.  I will be very displeased to hear any more talk …of conquering .. or anything else that may bring the wrath of the Great Spirit upon us.”

Daedlus motioned with his head to cut the broadcast, which the communication dinosaurs began to do.  Once all channels had been silenced, a brown triceratops with red horns walked into the room through a set of red hexagonal doors.  The female dinosaur looked up, “excellent speech Daedlus Claw.  You have summoned me?”  This dinosaur was in charge of overall operations within their home: from the air systems, water systems, sewage systems, food systems, electrical systems, and everything else.  The triceratops had a good head on her shoulders, and was well liked amongst the various crews.  The large dark blue skinned Tyrannosaurus nodded, “yes 100, Pudgy Hedgehog was found a short distance from here.  He was brought back with the Razar patrol, and brought up his friend …Mr. Dinosaur …again.  What is the current status of our guest?”

The Triceratops rolled her eyes, “well … boastful as always.  He claims to have a base of operations nearby, and has been clamoring to be allowed to head back there.  Honestly .. I say we let him.  Shut the doors, and do not let him back in.”  The supreme leader nodded, “ I am inclined to agree, but … somehow he was able to survive in the open world.  The Great Spirit did not immediately obliterate him.  Have we found out any reason why yet?”  A skinny green dinosaur with three clawed paws and green horns upon his head nodded.  “We have been running tests on our tyrannosaurus subject.  We believe it is because of a temporal disturbance.  He was involved with a series of experiments that occurred before the great severing.”  The science team lead claw spoke with a firm definitive tone.

100 nodded to her fellow lead claw, “that would make the most sense 5K.  It was before the horrors that were wrought upon our kind.  Have your researchers had any luck checking the ancient texts.”  5K nodded, and pressed the triangular shaped buttons to bring up a series of images on the hexagonal screens that were attached to the walls of the chamber.  “With your permission Daedlus, I will begin my presentation.”  Daedlus nodded, “you may proceed.  Heed my words, what is spoken here will not be released until I say so.  I do not wish to cause any needless worry.”  All the dinosaurs nodded in the room, which including the Lead Claws, was roughly twenty animals.  The science team Lead Claw nodded, and bowed slightly.  

“In order to explain what we must do, I must go over the information uncovered during our research.  As all are aware, our kind soon came to dominate this world.  We called it Pangea, and the world was full of life.  Society was built, and huge gatherings of structures formed around the land.  At the center of our world was the chain, our single connection to the sky and the Great Spirit.  In the time before the structures, our kind revered the Great Spirit Unetlanvhi and the world spirit Gaia.  However, our kind began to become prideful.  The ancient traditions were tossed aside, in favor of the thought of the day.  The old stories were forgotten, and unbridled passions pushed the boundaries of the world.  Limits were broken, redefined, and broken once more.  We thought ourselves greater than our creators, and began to draw power from the chain.  At first, there was no noticeable effect, and the development of our society sped even further ahead.”

As the science Lead Claw explained, the various dinosaurs in the room listened.  The only one who was there during that time was the Daedlus.  Some would look up at the supreme leader,  but he was stoic and had no external expression.  The story continued, “we experimented upon the world, and its processes.  The scientists figured out the nature of death, and how to reverse it.  Soon, long fallen members of our packs could be brought back to life.  But their time was never long, and soon perished once more.  The development of flying structures allowed our species to head into the sky.  All of which was power drawn from the chain, which none were aware at the time, was starting to become weak.  At first, there was little notice, other than a few of our electrical systems not working properly.  Maintenance teams were sent, and the issues diagnosed.  The issues never were truly fixed, and soon spread throughout our world.”

Taking a moment to take a drink from a long beaker of a blue colored liquid, 5K began to speak once more.  “The chain was weakening, and the very thing our society depended on came into focus.  The best and brightest of our kind headed to the chain, finding it was shrinking.  The once strong glow of pure white light, was barely a flicker.  The recommendation was formed, and delivered to our grand ruling body.  We must stop drawing power from the chain.  The debate raged for months, with all sides deeply entrenched with their opinions.  Personal attacks were as common as biting insects in the warm muggy nights.  Families were broken, loved ones stopped talking to one another, but yet the society pulled power from the chain.  Until one day, the power immediately disappeared.  The severing had begun, and all watched in horror as the chain fell from its eternal perch in the sky.  The links fell one at a time and shattered upon the ground.  Our kind had taken too long, and the decision was made for us.”

Daedlus nodded, “I was young at that time.  And ..much smaller ..if you can believe it.  The world trembled, as the chain which had always stood as a reminder that all was well, was now gone.  At first, nothing seemed to change.  The supplies of stored energy were sufficient.  But the tranquility did not last long.  The world began to change, with huge tremors throughout the ground.  Our world was one gigantic mass of land, but soon it began to crack and separate.  Our kind were trapped on the new pieces of land, as they were violently shifted away from one another.  Fire came from the ground, and burned  everything it touched.  Structures that had stood for as long as any could remember were razed and cast into the dark underneath below the land.  Thousands of our kind were burned in the fires, but our kind persevered.  In the years that passed, we became attuned with the world, and could predict where the tremors would occur. It was then when our scientists determined the cause.”

5K nodded, “the friction between the rock that formed the structure underneath the ground, was what caused the tremors.  The land had stopped separating, and had moved into place the nine new masses of land.  So a great conclave was called, and the decision was made to inject a lubricant into the rock.  However, with resources running low, our ancient ancestors had to be resourceful.”  Deadlus shook his head, “resourceful?  What they chose to do was an abomination.”  The Triceratops looked confused, “what did they do?”  5K nodded again, “one plentiful resource that was around, was the dead.  Their bodies could no longer be brought back to life, so they were repurposed.  With proper application of technology, the dead could be liquified and inserted deep into the fault lines that were the source of the tremors.  The injection of lubricants was a success, and the planet stopped shaking.  However …a new issue arose.”

The supreme leader nodded, “yes … years of necromancy had resulted in the spirits of the dead to be fragmented and disjointed.  They lashed out, and instead of taking the hint, our scientists suggested a better method would be to use the spirit energy to power our structures.”  The Triceratops Lead Claw for operations shrieked, “why in Pangea’s name would they do such a thing?”  5K sighed, “it worked, the power needs were solved once more.  The planet no longer shook, and the dead were silenced, the powers that be thought all was well.  That was until the weather began to change, and soon vast swaths of our land were stripped of life.  The flying structures evacuated our kind from their former homes, to condense further on the area that would support life.  However, those areas began to decrease as well, over time.  The water was poisonous, but ever resourceful, the pure water was able to be extracted.  Only the poison remained, and vast salt seas stretched between the lands.  Any of our kind that attempted to cross, would instantly be dissolved upon the fine white salt.”  

5K sighed again, and took a sip from his tall glass once more.  “The next blow to our kind was not able to be predicted, which resulted in vast swaths of our kind no longer able to be able to reproduce.  The bodies of the dead were required for lubricant, and their souls needed to power our structures.  But when the ability to create new life slowed, that threw all the previously laid plans out, and new plans had to be crafted.  Treatments were created, and soon selective breeding began to occur.  It was at this time, that talk of evacuation began to creep up into the discourse of daily life.  Our scientists said they had found another world that could support life.  It would be a very long journey.  The scientists were scoffed at, and more researched ordered into what was occuring with the current world.  Even at its decreased capacities, it was still able to support life.  As a way to compromise, movement upon the exterior world was limited.  As our kind stayed within their pyramid structures, they watched the skies open up into a black void.”

The Daedlus Claw sighed and nodded, “that was when Unetlanvhi first spoke to us.  He never appeared, the only thing our kind could see was the faintest outline of a strange creature that none had ever seen before.  His voice was strong, and shook the world.  He chastised our kind, having extracted every bit of life from this world.  When that was not enough, we even defiled the dead and robbed the spirits of an afterlife.  We had broken every natural and spiritual order in existence.  The world would be reset, and the destroyers would be removed.  The voice trailed off, and soon the land was cast into darkness.  The light of the sun, the light of the moon, the light of the stars were all gone.  The temperatures plummeted, and white translucent materials began to encase our structures.  It was clear, evacuation was the only way to survive.”

5K nodded, “and thus the great departure began.  The flying structures all gathered together  over the last bastion of life on Pangea.  Two pyramids were fueled, and supplied for the long trip to the far away land in the sky.  However, not all could go, which resulted in difficulties.”  The Triceratops was listening in dumbstruck horror, and watched as the Daedalus Claw closed his eyes.  “The young were loaded onto the bases, along with a small group of older dinosaurs.  The remaining of our kind were killed, and then repurposed as fuel.  As the translucent materials grew closer, the flying structures were sealed and began to rise high into the sky.  Higher and higher they went, until the nine land masses could just barely be seen.  Huge chunks of rock, covered in the material, were being thrown upon the land once called Pangea.  But in time, the two structures were safe, and flying through the dark void.”

Daedlus nodded with his eyes still closed, “Unetlanvhi was angry.  We had escaped the world, so he then pulled away the very air that we needed to breathe.  But ever resourceful, the scientists had developed a way to extract air, and the structures were sealed to avoid any loss of precious air.  Patiently our young waited, watching as the dark void seemed to never end.  It was then when we could hear the Great Spirit once more, he said that we would never be allowed to reach our destination.  Our kind would never be allowed to prosper ever again, nor live in peace.  Suddenly, a gigantic piece of rock was thrust in front of the two pyramids.  Our lead structure was destroyed when it could not course correct, and it smashed head first into the rock.  Our structure was able to course correct, and with careful maneuvering, we were able to land upon the lifeless ground.  The rock was pulled into orbit of the planet, and we watched as Pangea was being pummeled from the void above the lands.”

The Triceratops shrieked, along with several other dinosaurs in the chamber.  “Daedlus Claw, we were told that the first structure made it to the new land?  You are saying that it in fact crashed here, were there any survivors?”  5K paused, “well …there were ..but their lives were repurposed for the greater good.  Development of special attire to be able to traverse the hostile land, and soon the remains of both material and our kind were retrieved.  It was during the early days of our exodus that the decision was made to limit our population.”  Daedulus nodded, “the cull was horrible.  I hated every moment of it, having to pick who lived, and who died.  But in time, the elderly passed on, and were repurposed for fuel.  Our kind which numbered in the millions once, is now down to less than a hundred.”  The room was silent, as the dinosaurs thought about the terrible tale of the fall of their society. It was then when cries started to fill the Pyramid, which drew a look from the Deadlus Claw.   

Unbeknownst to those in the command chamber, Grumpasaurus had escaped his confinement chamber.  Having reached the external doors that led into the Deadlus’s chamber, he had listened through a crack in the hexagonal doors.  The story filled his mind with rage, and so he had figured out a way to hack into a control panel next to the door.  The communication channels had been restored, and the true nature of their escape had been broadcast to the entire structure and through 8K’s communication equipment outside.  Grinning to himself, “now is my chance to escape this darned place.”  

The crafty Tyrannosaurus started to run down the long hexagonal hallway.  His mind was razor sharp, and he had memories of the path the Razar soldiers had taken him.  Down the corridor, make a left, down another corridor, and make a right to reach the main entry plaza chamber.  Having incredible luck, he found the corridors to be empty, and soon Grumpy had made it to the chamber.  Unlike the dinosaurs in the dome, he was fully accustomed to the Earth’s gravity.  He could easily outrun any of them, and was much stronger.  Charging through the wide plaza, he found the dinosaurs roaring in pain or anger.  They paid no attention to him at all, and soon he had made it to the main corridor that led to where the airlocks were located.  Running as fast as he could go, meant that he traversed the distance in a short time.  

The airlock room was staffed by one Razar raptor and a science team member, a small green dinosaur that was covered with white feathers.  Lowering his head, he rammed the raptor hard and flung her against a wall.  Roaring loudly, he turned his head towards the quivering green clad science team officer.  He nodded nervously, and started working the controls.  The interior airlock door opened, and Grumpy strode through the doorway.  As the door started to close behind him, the airlock sealed with a stale brackish air between the outside and inside.  A voice called out over the communication channel in the airlock, “I hope you are pleased with yourself.  You have set our species’ minds on fire.  That story was not to be disseminated.  I should order the air to be removed, and cause you to implode.”

It was the Daedlus’s voice, and he was really mad.  Grumpy looked up at where he thought the sound was coming from, “all the lies!  You lied to us all, about Mars.  A secret base of our kind, living in peace.  They all have a right to know!”  The supreme leader roared, “just go and never come back here again!”  The exterior airlock door opened up, and the tyrannosaurus charged forward and out into the desert landscape in front of the pyramid.  Upon exiting the airlock Grumpy discovered the Razar forward base had descended into chaos.  The raptors were roaring in pain and agony, while another smaller Tyrannosaurus was standing next to what looked like a hedgehog.  When the little brown hedgehog waved, Mr. Dinosaur blinked and headed over to where the two were standing.  

Pudgy was bouncing happily, “HELLO MR. DINOSAUR!”   As the confused dinosaur walked up, “Pudgy?  What are you doing here in Colorado? Nevermind, we have to get out of here NOW!  Climb up on me.”  The little hedgehog nodded, and immediately scampered over and watched as Grumpy lowered his tail to rest on the ground.  The little hedgehog climbed up and latched on with his death grip.  As Grumpy lifted his tail, he could see the Razar spot him, “time to go!”  Pudgy held on for dear life, as his dinosaur friend immediately started to run.  Locating the road in the dark was not hard, and soon there was a fair distance between the pyramid and them.  Pudgy watched as the Razar started to try to give chase, but could not keep up with the earth acclimated dinosaur.  

The toll road that led from Pike’s Peak, down to the toll plaza at the base of the mountain was nineteen miles of steepy windy roads.  However, this was all downhill, so Grumpy was making short work of the road.  They quickly passed the Devil’s playground camp, and continued on.  Mr. Dinosaur slowed down to a walking pace, “it feels so good to get out and run.  Those jerks had me cooped up in a detention cell for months …”  Pudgy, realizing it was safer to move, started to scurry up his dinosaur friend’s spine, and eventually reached the top of his head.  “Why did they put you in jail Mr. Dinosaur?”  The large animal chuckled, “it is time for me to tell you a story for a change.  Your moon dino friends came to visit me at my cave one day, and insisted that I return with them.  They were heavily armed, and took me back to the moon.  They subjected me to experimentation, looking for something, but never finding it.”

Pudgy nodded, “Pudgy heard the Deadlus’s story over the speakers on 8K’s back.  You were able to live here this entire time, without attracting attention from Unetlanvhi.”  Mr. Dinosaur looked up, “who is that?”  The little hedgehog nodded again, holding tightly on, “that is the name of the Great Spirit who watches over us all.”  Grumpy nodded, “ahh, that makes sense.  And given most of the story told by the Lead Claws, I can see why they want to figure out a way to stay.  Pudgy, that base looks wonderful, but it is damaged.  The chamber they kept me in was where the dead used to be processed.  I watched as the Razar would bring one or two a day into the chamber to be liquified into fuel and their spirits turned into energy.”  The little critter whimpered, “that means that there are not that many dinosaurs left inside.  They are all dying….”  Pudgy started to cry softly, since they had only been nice to him when he had visited the first time and this current time.

“HEY ….YOU GUYS …. WAIT ….. UP!”  An exhausted voice called out from behind them, causing Grumpy to slow down and turn around.  8K had been running after them as fast as he could muster, but he was loaded with communication equipment.  Grumpy looked at 8K with a cautious look, “we are not going back with you.  You should turn around and …”  The exhausted young Tyrannosaurus wheezed as he slid on the asphalt in front of him.  “No … I want to go with you.  I’m tired of living cooped up in the base all day long.  I don’t want to be in the military anymore.  I just want to explore this land, and make animals happy.”   Pudgy peeked from on top of Mr. Dinosaur’s head, and listened while Grumpy spoke.  “I’m not opposed to you coming with us.  But first, let me get this equipment from your back.”

It was a delicate dance, since both Tyrannosaurus arms were short, and their clawed hands were not good at delicate tasks.  With much wiggling, some growls, and bared teeth … the equipment soon started to fall off onto the ground.  As each piece fell, the communication channel opened up once more.  It was the Daedlus’s voice booming, “THERE WILL BE ORDER HERE! I AM STILL IN COMMAND OF THIS STRUCTURE.  ALL LEAD CLAWS SECURE YOUR DISTRICTS. RAZAR FORCES, RETURN INSIDE, MARTIAL LAW HAS BEEN DECLARED. HISSSSSSSSSSSSS…….”  Pudgy whimpered, “that does not sound good. 8K, what do you think is going on?”  The young dinosaur was stretching, “oh it feels so good to get that junk off of me.  From when I was young, we were taught that the second structure made it to the land in the distant sky.  The Daedlus told us that we had to come here first to refuel, before heading to the far away land.  But when what actually happened was broadcast all over, the lies of the Daedlus came into light.”

Grumpy nodded, “there is much he lied about.  The base could never have made the trip.  The support structure that formed the framework of the base was twisted and broken.  Given the number of our kind remaining, and how much power the base required, you never would have made it to Mars.  No, there is an ulterior motive here, why would the Daedlus knowingly send the base back to the Earth where this great spirit would destroy them all?”  8K nodded, “it is indeed strange.  I do not know …. the reason why.  Umm … Pudgy .. are you all right?”  The little hedgehog had grown very quiet, and had started to glow with an ethereal green light.  He floated from the top of his dinosaur friend’s head.  Without warning, the hedgehog immediately started to fly up the road towards the pyramid base.  “SHOOT!” Grumpsaurus shouted, “I have to get Pudgy back … stay here.  I’ll be back.”    8K watched as Grumpy chased after the flying hedgehog, but also as the same ethereal green light was starting to cover the mountain and the pyramid structure.  “The Great Spirit……” the young dinosaur gasped.

Pudgy could not feel his body any more, nor could he move.  He was not in pain, and had full senses.  He could feel the warm air rushing around his body as he flew quickly up the mountain.  In seconds he had returned, and was floating over the Razar camp.  The exterior of the base had been abandoned, as all dinosaurs had been called inside to maintain order.  His mouth opened by itself, and a deep voice called out that was not his own.  “I WARNED YOUR KIND NEVER TO RETURN HERE!  YET YOU STILL CHOOSE TO REMAIN DEFIANT UNTIL THE END.”  The hedgehog whimpered, and tried to resist, but he could not.  In his mind, he could see the shadowy outlines of a native American Medicine man.  The figure’s eyes were black, darker somehow than the surrounding void.

A hologram started to draw once more outside of the Pyramid, line by line, until a wireframe of the Daedlus appeared in front of where Pudgy was floating.  The supreme leader roared, “HOW MANY YEARS MUST OUR KIND SUFFER?”  Pudgy knew what had happened, he touched the chain on Kodiak.  Somehow he must have absorbed energy from the chain, which meant that Unetlanvhi could use his body somehow.  Whimpering as loudly as he could muster, “please everyone stop being mad at each other.  Pudgy like the moon dinosaurs …” The great spirit paused for a moment, and his dark gaze turned towards the timid hedgehog looking at him.  Externally the hedgehog was silent, but in his mind, the great spirit spoke directly to him. “You heard the tale from the Bear Mother, and now the tale from the Daedlus.  Yet, you choose to intervene … why?”

The little hedgehog whimpered, “they were nice to Pudgy when Pudgy went to the moon to save everyone from Cthulhu.  What their ancestors did was terrible.  Pudgy agrees, but with the exception of the Daedlus, these dinosaurs did not do the terrible things that their ancestors did.  If you took away their ability to make new dinosaurs, then over time they would go away naturally.  What would it hurt if you were to leave them alone?”  The Great Spirit rubbed his chin, “hmm.  An interesting idea, and one that I have tried many times before.  Each time I presented a chance for their kind to redeem themselves, they chose to follow the worst possible path.  I will listen to your council, and wait to hear what the Daedlus says next, before I make up my mind.”

The hologram of the Daedlus looked annoyed, but soon the floating green hedgehog began to speak loudly in Unetlanvhi’s voice.  “Pudgy Hedgehog has made a plea on your behalf for mercy.  I am inclined to decline, and wipe your kind from existence once and for all.  What say  you Daedlus?  Why should I stay my hand?”  The supreme dinosaur leader nodded,  “please listen to Pudgy’s council Great Spirit.  This structure represents the last one of our species, and it is beyond repair.  We can no longer maintain it, and wish only to live out our remaining days here.  Our kind once numbered in the hundreds within this structure.  We only have fifty left, and those remaining are sick.  We do not have long to last.”  Pudgy whimpered as he floated in front of the wireframe hologram.  The Great Spirit Unetlanvhi remained quiet, considering, and measuring his response.  But what would he decide?

By Cobalt

Cobalt is a normal guy that goes to work. Pudgy is his hedgehog friend who lives in a hobbit style home nearby, and goes on epic adventures. All Pudgy stories are copyrighted to Cobalt. Doomcock, Harvey Cthulhu, and Xanadoom is copyrighted to Overlord DVD.

One reply on “Shadow Fall: Chapter 7: Sever”

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