Note: English is not the author's first language, so don't expect perfect grammar and spelling. Feel free to correct minor mistakes you find, though don't change major content.
So hello everyone, this is HummelHunter here, presenting you my newest idea. Now for this, it will not interfere with my other stuff, it is just a little side project I wanted to make. Hope you like it, have fun reading.
It is just an attempt to show off the live of our all bane, but our all friends, the monsters. I asked what their life could be like. And this is what I thought off. Enjoy.
Apprentice of the Scythe
I spend the day like every other, filtering through the vulcanic ash in search of anything to eat. Bugs, some plants and from time to time a piece of rotten meat. Other than feeding and sleeping I trained to reach my goal. To finally get one of the Shoguns. My name is Itachi, I am a Ceanataur. And I couldn't believe how drastic a life could change in a few days...
What most other beings didn't know was how deep the hierarchy in our clans was. We lived for honor and glory, defending our territory with all we had. And only the most powerful and skilled ones could reach adulthood and with this the status of a Shogun, even less the one of a Sensei, or called Terra Shogun by our cousins the Hermitaurs. All the time we had outside of feeding or resting was supposed to be used for training. We could not afford to loose any ground to other species. Rathalos, Lavasioth and especially the Gravios where always trying to get rid of us, trying to banish us from our home. But without any success. Well at least they. Something new appeared an age ago. The Senseis where calling them "ningen" or "humans" in other languages. They where strange, each one being so different form the others one could hardly believe it was a single species. They never stayed long. Coming in the vulcano the most left at the same day, but they decimated the numbers of us and other monsters in no time. They where like a curse, striking whenever you couldn't need them. And they where a mighty foe. Some of them could even stand against Gravios or Teostra, we could only fend them back with our pure numbers. Because of their attacks, we lost 12 Shogun let alone this sun-cyclus. I set myself a target. I will rise to the greatest Shogun ever and extinct that curse of my kind, to protect my homegrounds.
"Itachi, hurry. We come late to training again." Maya was always like this. She was my best friend since I could think. The female crab and me where doing everything together. Including getting ourselves in trouble. Sensei Regan was getting angry easily, especially if you came to late to his lessons. "How about this way, it is much shorter. We could even make it in time." I replied, pointing at a small stone brigde reaching over a pool of magma. "Are you crazy? That lava pool is full of Lavasioths. And I don't want to end as piscine fodder today." she said. "Nah, we just keep away from the egde and everything's fine." I regreted those words later. But this second I didn't mind it. Not getting in discredit with the Sensei was more important to me than my own life. I still smile today if I think about how naive and foolish I was. So wihtout worrying I walked over the firt section of the bridge. "DAMN Itachi, why have you always to follow you own head?" Maya called from the start of the bridge. She was always a bit careful while I liked the risk. "It is always the same with you", she mumbled and followed me: "Come on, we can still turn around." "Don't be such a fearful Kelbi, we have almost half of it." In the middle of the brigde, a medium sized island of rock was placed. Just as we reached it, my biggest talent showed its effect. Getting into trouble:
The ground turned red and started to boil. We could barely manage to jump away as a huge grey body bursted out. The rock hardened immediately again and a big reddish-grey Piscine Wywern looked down on us. "Hmm, nothing to get full of, but I have no problem with a little sack", the Fish said. Maya shrugged and hided behind me. Just like I shrugged. "Don't say 'I told ya!'. Thats not the time for it." I stammered. But she screamed in hystery:"DAMN YOU ITACHI I FREAKIN TOLD YA!!!" The Lavasioth left of a dirty laugh:"Ooohhh, how cute is that. Two little lovebirds? Well just say goodbye." It strechted down his head to bite at us, I closed eyes and swiped my claw. Then I heard a scream of pain. But it wasn't my fault. As I opened my eyes again, Sensei Regan stood there with unfolded claws. The face of the fish showed a bleeding slash. "Run as fast as you can, I won't have a problem with that oversized Arowanna." came from the huge orange Carapaeon. Me and Maya didn't loose a second...
"Eat this!" The Lavasioth raised its head and blasted an orb of molten stone out. Regan turned around, the huge skullshell facing the fish. His claws anchored in the ground, he expelled a stream of water. The magma got caught and cooled down until just a piece of rock was flying. Short before it would reach the Sensei, it stopped completely. "Now how about eating it yourself?", Regan roared as he increased the water pressure. The stone accelerated and impacted the face of the unaware piscine.It got knocked down unconscious, another strike of the Shogun's claw left a second slash, forming an X in the face of the Lavasioth. The black ash took a crimson tone as it came into contact with blood. Screaming in pain, it jumped back into the lava. "Think twice before messing with Ceanataurs!", the sensei called. The wywern strechted its head out once again, the wounds burned and leaving two huge scars. Without a word it dived away. "Now to you two. First you come late to a lesson, nothing really new, especially wiht you Itachi. But then you cross Lavasioth territory and cause such unnecessary conflicts. What the hell is up with you?" Regan was really upset, I didn't know how to tell him without getting punished to much. But there was no such way, like always. "I just wanted to make it in time and took a shortcut. I hoped to...", I stammered.
"You hoped but all you did was hope. Use your head! It isn't only there to hold you eyes on place! I already knew that you messed it up again, so I came down to look after you. But this, this is more than just beeing lazy. This is foolish!". I already knew this would be a shit day when I woke up.
"But what? Think next time, and better think about training times before they already started, so you won't have any stupid ideas to come in time. We can only hope this Lavasioth will stop with it right now, or our whole clan might have problems!"
"Yeah, ok. I understood I screwed it again. But please leave Maya out of this, it's not her fault."
"It might not be her idea, but she came with you. You both screwed up, you both come this evening to me. Some nice special work waits already."
I still wonder how she could sit still that moment. Maybe because she learned better than contradicting a Sensei. But again, she still reacted her anger on me, even until today. Women are just so unforgiving...
We came to the Sensei, and we got a really, cough, reaaally funny work to do... "So you two will go down in the valley and get us a pound of Kabutos. Have fun catching them.", the Terra Shogun told with a self-statisfied grin. Like already said, veeery enjoyable work...NOT.
Kabutos... Those little tasty bugs every crab would sell its soul for. They where incredibly tasty, but extremely hard to find. And getting a whole pound of them, well it could take a day or two searching the few bits of grass in the lower areas of our vulcano. Both me and Maya had found a small piece of wood shaped likea jar to collect them.
"Bah, my left claw hurts. We are doing this for hours now, can't we pause it?"
"Shut up and search. You got us into this, and you are going to get us out here. You where lazy enough this morning."
"I am only a mortal Ceanataur. Don't expect me working without rest."
"Shut up and search. I didn't want to come here, and you won't leave until this is finished."
I never won any argument with her. Maybe because she was always right, maybe because of another reason. So the monotone gathering went on as out of nothing I heard a grunt. I knew that sound well. Bullfangos, those dumb pigs who always searched a brawl. Knowing what would come, I hid my jar with bugs behind a rock and turned around.
"Oh what do we have here. Two lonely Ceanataurs searching for bugs. Would you mind if we help a bit?", the largest of them told in a hypocritical tone. Almost worth of a Bulldrome in size, he was leading a troup of six other Pelagus.
"We don't search any trouble, just leave us alone and beat up some Ioprey. They will most likely enjoy it."
"Well, I heard other stuff about the trouble stuff. I shall greet you from Mr.Kowashi, his nephew got a few reminders from your clan, and we will give you a few reminders in his name." It scraped his hoof across the hard ground in a threatening manner.
Those stupid Piscines again. Regan was right as he said they would search further confrontation. I didn't know my chances against a whole pack of Bullfangos, but running wouldn't be an option. The ground was to hard to dig and their legs where faster when it came to sprinting. And besides I was an Anoken. Some of the greatest warriors of all time came from my family. Maya lined up besides me in the meantime. If they wanted a brawl, they would get one.
"Then come and see what you get from messing with us." I unfolded the still small blade on my claw. This had to be enough or otherwise we wouldn't come out here. It began, one of the first boars charged. I took a step to the side and slashed the bristly skin. The cut wasn't deep, but it was long and nearly the whole side was open. I saw Maya grabbing a charging one frontal at the tusks, lifting it up and using the swing of the attack to throw it against the leader.
"Where did you learn that?"
"Hurry, left side!" Spinning around, I swiped at the chin of another attacker but got hit by the heavy body. It sent me flying and In landed on my shell, unable to turn around. Somewhere in the corner of my vision I noticed another charge towards me and folded in my claw again. As soon as in range, I clung onto a tusk and raised onto the Fango's back.
"Get down there you stupid.. raah" I had already stabbed the spine, the beast rebelled and threw me down. I managed to get back on my feet, seeing how it limped away. The leader ran towards Maya, close besides me. I only got a short hit on the hindleg, but it was enough delay for her to get out of danger. As fast as I could I ran up to the boar, and both me and Maya swiped out claws.
Aware, it took a step forward, turning around and charging. We got hit and flung around, Maya crashing into a wall unconscious, only slightly breathing, and I landing on my shell again unable to alter my position.
"Let's get outa here, those two got their lesson and we are going to have some visitors.", a Fango mentioned while pointing down the grey hill. Four bipedal schemes covered in strange plates and holding enormous blades on their backs showed up. It was unusual for them to run away, but this wasn't Pelagus territory. They had no reason to defend it or to risk a fight with Humans as they wouldn't win anything and the chance of dying was to high.
Some of them kept on spitting at us before grunting and walking away, out of sight. Now we where alone, and with only me able to at least see anything, we where exposed. The Humans reached us, looking at me. They where talking words I couldn't understand, drawing out something small and red from a bag. It seemed like they assumed Maya was dead, coming closer to me. In vain I struggled to get back on my legs and started spitting at them. The Shoguns taught us that our saliva was poisonous to them, so I tried my best to keep them away from me. The red orb was thrown at me and suddendly I saw everything through a tight mist, senses numbed and unable to move. The last thing I noticed was getting picked up, then my vision went black...
I kept on looking down on the still wet eggs for a while after laying them. It was my first offspring to raise, but my mate told me it wasn't only hard work. From what he said to me, it seemed to bring bright sides. But I assumed it to be a hard time for us. The Aptonoths seemed to vanish and grabbing one to keep oneself alive was hard enough. And now with the young...
The flapping of wings interrupted my thoughts and as I looked up, three birds landed in our large nest. Quinn, Fred and Angelina waddeled a bit closer, she smiling and opening her beak: "Seems we will be mum soon, huh? How did it work, have you any complaints, pain or is there anything I can do for you? You look tired, maybe some fish? We have more than we need..."
"Sorry for interrupting you, it is nice how yo care but I am fine. And you know I prefer meat over your fish. That's nothing I can get full off. Is there anything new in the forest?"
They where close friends of mine. Fred, the Kut-Ku, and Quinn and Angelina, a breeding pair of Qurupecos, where sharing the same nest cliff with us for about one and a half sun-cycles now. We where no threat to each other and there was no reason to fight. We didn't compete for food as me and Nate lived from the aptonoth herds of our island while our feathered neighbours fished and consumed plants. Fred was a bit strange, almost only insisting on Kelbi and Jaggi when not out on the ocean to learn how to catch fish without getting eaten by a hungry Leviathan. He wasn't used to the life here, but he had no choice. Kut-Kus couldn't fly long distances by themselves and relied on wind to travel. A violent storm forced him here long ago and so he tried to make the best from his situation, being the only Kut-Ku of our forest. The Qurupecos knew each other forever, having raised several loads of eggs together. In the end, we both had our use from it: They could live without having to fear anything but the occasional hunters, we had six additional eyes to watch our territory.
So there came the daily report with Quinn and Angy not having any special events. Royal Ludroth brothers with their harem arrived at the northern coast today, setting up a new breeding ground. No big deal, they wouldn't cause to much trouble.
Fred although made a sorrowed face as he began to talk: "Well, I am not sure what it is, never seen something like this in my life, but as it was eating a whole slain herd of Aptonoths and two packs Jaggi, including the leaders, it seems to be the reason for your lack of food. I have never seem something that hungry, not even the Elder Dragons roaming my old jungle could swallow so much food in such a short time. It was black and huge, no wings and a huge tail, two legs only. At least that's what I've seen from above."
The faces of the Pecos became dark and my own mood changed into miserable. A Deviljho... Not only was it causing us to hunger, but it was a huge danger for the eggs. I had to talk with Nate about it as soon as he came back from his patrol flight. But I didn't expect he would miss that detail, he would sense the lurking danger from miles away. Sun was setting as he came back, landing and folding his wings. The huge Rathalos was missing a bit of his tail ever since he came here and the shell on his body was covered in countless scars. He was holding the carcass of half an Aptonoth in his mouth, placing it down. "Here, you must be hungry after this day. That's what I could get without getting close to that damn Demon."
"So you've seen it too, huh? Fred told me about it too. What shall we do about it?"
The red wings merged with the reddish sunlight left as he came closer, revealing the first sprouts of azure scales on his body. He was some cycles older than me, coming to the island in search of a new mate. He didn't talk much about her, just telling me that it is a gone time. The first day we met, he promised me to live, and if required to give his life, in order to protect me. I had just reached adulthood that month and was lucky to meet an experienced male so quick, but somehow I couldn't accept any young from him the first cyclus. This time it worked, I got pregnant and now there where those five eggs, pulsating with early life in the warmth of our nest.
"We have two choices. On the first hand we could just wait until it doesn't find enough for its feeding frenzys. They are nomads, always moving to the next ground if out of prey. Although this might take some time, and if we have tough luck, we and the little ones might starve. On the other hand we could try to kill or at least drive it away. But they aren't easy to deal with, this was done by one of them." He pointed to the lost tip of his spiked tail.
Nate began to groom my green scales, and I kept thinking about our talk. We came to the conclusion that we might watch the situation a while. As soon as it would get critical, we had to fight. Then we slowly slummered away, Quinn taking over the first watch of the night.
TO BE CONTINUED...