The Elemental Part 4
The winds were threshing about, sands swirling in eddies that attempted to swallow everything that it came into contact with.
The Artificer was hovering in his full splendour, draped in a tan cloak with a hood concealing his wizened features. The creator
of the Earth had his branch-like arms crossed as he stared down at his fairy captive.
Crysalla was shuddering and went speechless in awe. The Artificer had the inherent effect of exacting reverence from his creations, so it
came to him as an embarrassing surprise when Zion executed her escapade.
''Why did you revolt against me puny girl?''
The Artificer asked in a thunderous voice that roiled the sand. The Artificer removed his hood, he was still in midair, and focused a pair
of breaming golden eyes at the fairy. In a flourish of his massive palm, the beetles closed in on Crysalla and she trembled even more.
The false God then extended his palm to stop the bugs in their track.
''I asked you a rudimentary question, you cur. I shall not repeat after this, Why did you revolt against me?''
Crysalla mustered all of the will in her small body but it all but vanished before she could breathe a word, The Artificer was too imposing of
a figure and she was caught unprepared for this confrontation. If it had been an ordinary interlocutor, Crysalla might have replied without
effort or even charm the person with her alluring beauty but this was a being, inscrutable as they came.
''So be it, the desert shall be your grave, rest well.''
The Artificer replaced his hood, crushed his hands together and levitated into the heavens. The deadly beetles began to swarm onto Crysalla and she forced her weak wings to take her away from certain death. They were weak and could barely flap but she lifted herself off the scorching ground with her tiny feet with some struggle. To the horror of the fairy, the beetles began to reveal a hidden layer under their carapace, it flickered once, twice and wings appeared, these cretins could fly too!
The giant beetles, about five of them, headed straight for the fairy, who lifted herself at the knick of time, causing two of the beetles to collide,
the pincers were so sharp that they cut each other cleanly into halves.
The remaining three beetles swooped toward Crysalla but she swerved past their advances, she was also careful to not fly too high toward the sweltering heat of the sun. Crysalla conjured the vestige of her fairy dust and blew it at the direction of one beetle, immediately causing the bug to feel groggy and collapse onto the ground.
While Crysalla was dealing with the beetle, another had managed to rip through her lower wing, it badly hurt her but she stayed in air. Specks of blood were splayed across the tattered wing as the aggressive beetle tore at the injured spot. Another beetle nipped at the pony tail of the young fairy, severing it within an inch from her head.
Crysalla thought to herself that this was to be her tragic end: betrayed, beaten and broken. She would lie in the desert and become a pathetic nameless cadaver, her beauty will be forgotten and nobody will tell stories of her worth listening. She would have been another passing face in the wheel of time. She wondered what the traitorous fairies would think of her and how they would laugh and rejoice at her sordid end.
At that thought, a hidden power was unlocked in meek Crysalla, she instantly regenerated her torn wing and replenished the fairy dust within her small torso. An ebullient rage overcame the fairy, her actions rendered an automated display. Savagely, Crysalla grabbed a beetle about five times her own size and absorbed its life essence. The creature shook at her uncanny touch and began to wither, the cellulose wall of the animal degrading until it turned into a husk devoid of moisture, it fended off the fairy with its pincers but Crysalla was too agile and mighty, it finally cracked and crumbled like a biscuit from the dryness.
Crysalla was disconcerted at her new powers but she was also reaping tremendous satisfaction from it. She was no longer a frail victim, she was now capable of administering her wrath and many were guilty.
''What is happening to me?'' She thought, the vestige of her mind shaken and disintegrating as she fought the vile bugs.
She grabbed another beetle and sucked its essence with her vampiric touch, it too crumbled into fine particles once she was done with it.
Each time Crysalla devoured a soul, she felt sick at the core of her gut but a dark part of her spirit was placated and the more she fed, the more that part seemed to overtake her conscience.
The last beetle, semi-sentient as it was, witnessed the gruesome demise of its team mates and absconded in jittery motion with its six scrawny legs upon the sand. Crysalla proceeded to do something unthinkable.
''It is defenceless and escaping for dear life, leave it alone!''
''Kill it as it would have killed you!''
''No! the battle is over, you have supremacy over the bugs!''
''Never leave a survivor to tell the tale of your victory, let the bodies do that!''
Crysalla waged an internal conflict in her head, she was going berserk and the dark side won. The fair complexion of the fairy was now
beginning to contort, some veins were bulging at the side of her head. She glared at the retreating beetle and sprung like a viper in ambush,
grabbing the beetle and extracting the legs of the animal from its body one by one as it recoiled in pain. The animal was left with only its abdomen and head as it miserably squirmed.
Crysalla smiled as she savoured the torture of the injured insect. She whizzed past the animal and back again, admiring her handiwork and with one final gesture of malice, she separated the head from its torso and wore it like a prized outfit. She drank the brain matter of the beetle until it was hollowed out and she could see through the eye sockets of the dead animal.
The fairy looked disturbingly odd with a gigantic head of an insect perched over her skull. Crysalla never experienced such joy in her young life
as she merrily danced in the air as if she was in a macabre masquerade. She was getting used to her new personality.
At that instance, the sky tore asunder and the Artificer reappeared in his unearthly glow. He landed beside the maniacal fairy and laughed like a proud parent.
''Your transformation is complete. You have passed the test. Next time, you will not be playing with the entrails of bugs. Skin-wearer.''