Contesting Armageddon

  • Baron

    After the death of the great being, the spirits began to play in their new world. Some spirits became stronger, taking on greater aspects of the natural order. Highest among these were Talos, the spirit of the sun, Vounó, the spirit of the mountains, Cymopoleia, the spirit of the sea, and Typhon, the spirit of the storm. They each led a sect of spirits, some swearing fealty to the mighty gods.

    When the first sentient creatures began crafting tools and weapons, the winds were disappointed. This was the purpose the great being had set them? To aid these paltry creatures? Some winds, such as the giant Typhon, broke their oaths to the great being, reveling in destruction and death. The less powerful wind spirits abandoned their titles, becoming the gales. Blizzards would sweep across the land, freezing and starving the creatures. Lightning would strike forests, burning them down in flames that refused to be doused by the downpour. The other spirits would join in on the fray, the sky lighting the fires, the earth opening great ravines and spewing forth magma, and the waters rising in great floods. Chaos reigned.

    The remaining winds who remained faithful fought the extinction where they could, but their efforts were more than drowned out by the storm giant. The winds sought out the aid of the few spirits who were not actively erasing the world of life. Among these were Talos and Vounó, who had observed the creatures and found them to be worthy of their protection, a spirit was a spirit, no matter the form.

    Vounó hid some of the few remaining creatures in his mountains, where the raging storm lost energy against the cragged cliffs. Talos brought the sun to bear, burning away the few gales and clouds that made their way over the peaks. The winds circled the inner valley, where they fertilized the ground for plants. Typhon soon learned of the sanctuary and sought a way to destroy it. However, he alone against Talos and Vounó would be suicide.

    Throughout this time, the moon god, Elatha, and sea goddess had remained neutral, unwilling to act in either way. The sea spirit removed herself, and would not come to Typhon’s aid no matter his promises, then his threats. So Typhon plotted her demise, aiding a less powerful spirit of water, Aegaeon, in destroying her, with the water spirit becoming the new titan of the sea. With that ally secured, Typhon took a different approach with the moon. Seducing him, the storm giant called for his aid in battle. His lover promised it.

    As Typhon gained followers, Talos and Vounó attempted to do the same. Talos’ fellow spirits of the dawn, Eos, and dusk, Astraios, joined, staving off the spirits of night and moon from snuffing out his light. Spirits flocked to either side, the war brewing as Typhon prepared his assault.

    The mountains lay far inland, beyond the normal reach of the sea. But gathering his strength, Aegaeon the titan stirred the depths, the ground trembling as the water retreated from the shore. Elatha the god readied his pull on the tides. Then, they heaved.

    The sea surged and flooded the scorched and desolate plains, where Typhon and the other spirits of destruction had desolated the earth. Breaking upon the sides of Vounó’s mountains, the water spirits maniacally forced their way up the cliffs, freezing and break off avalanches from the formidable peaks. Sky spirits struck at the crags with lightning, raining fire upon the defenders. Vounó and Talos had yet to show themselves but it appeared the mountains would hold.

    Then came Typhon. Summoning his power upon the sea made his strength tenfold, his clouds thunderous and dark, his gusts enough to strip flesh from bone. His footsteps rumbled doom as he marched through the water, the cyclone swirling around his massive figure, in his head a single eye gleaming with bloodlust and victory.

    The mountains were ground to sand, unable to weather the storm. The defenders fled, unable to approach the bearer of hurricanes. So, at last, came Vounó the stalwart and Talos the mighty to meet Typhon the tempest and Aegaeon the vortex.

    The gales threatened to snuff out the flames flickering off of Talos’ armor, but it was thick, forged from metals that even Vounó’s magma could not completely melt. He bore a staff of obsidian, its head topped by a blazing spark. Vounó wore no armor, relying on his thick hide of volcanic rock to protect him. He wielded a pick of solid fire, the head crafted of diamond. Eos and Astraios stayed beyond the veil of winds, staving off those spirits that attempted to breach the broken peaks to reach the creatures beyond. Vounó and Talos marched into the storm.

    Great spires of rock rose up from below the waves, only to be crumbled to dust by bursts of lightning and wind. Flame and light broke against the water that struck at the golden spirit. Gales scoured the skin of Vounó, but they found no purchase in his rigid skin. The weapons of the gods flashed, cutting deep into the giant and titan. Again and again, the gods struck, but still, they would not fall. The titan and giant railed, slamming their power into the stubborn gods, but they would not fall.

    The tug of war was, at last, not ended by neither the assailers nor the besieged, but by the rope. Elatha could no longer hold the tides, releasing the sea from his hold. The water washed Aegaeon back to the depths, though the shore still remained near the ruined sanctuary of the once-proud mountains. Typhon, his strength diminished, retreated from the gods. His last gambit had resulted in failure.

    Talos and Vounó had won, but at a cost to all spirits. They had expended much of their strength, power that returned over an extended period of time. Even the great Typhon would not be able to manifest a body for hundreds of years. The spirits retreated from the land, their effects greatly reduced. Still one can observe the battle between them, in the blizzards, the tides, and the weathering of the land. It is to the gods we give our sacrifices and prayers, for it is they who will defend us when Typhon returns to strength to continue his deadly ambition.

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