Chapter 33: Birth of the Abyssians

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23,105 AE

The Five Sisters valiantly fought their way against the back of the Bonemaw Mountains. Surrounded by Draug’s soldiers and with nowhere else to turn, they fled into a cave and were chased deeper and deeper, into a vast network of underground caverns. By the time they lost their pursuers in the darkness, the sisters were lost as well. Cassyva’s skin prickled at the insistent feeling that something else was now following them. Each possible exit took them farther underground, until finally, they saw a shimmering light. But instead of leading them to the surface, they found themselves in a large domed cavern bathed in the soft glow of crystals. And they were not alone.

The creatures were Inxykree, the female counterparts to the merciless male Inxikrah. Six adults tended a dozen infants, all pure white and reptilian with large faintly glowing cloudy eyes, intelligent but inscrutable. The adults turned and hissed, displaying needle-like fangs and razor-sharp claws. Cassyva paused. They had sworn only to use the Star Crystals to stop Draug, but they couldn’t do that dead. Cassyva shouted “Now!” raising the crystals and infusing the five sisters with magical energy. But it was already too late. The Inxykree struck without hesitation, their keen claws tearing the sisters into bloody shreds before they could expend the magic they had absorbed.

Then the Inxykree and their young consumed them.

The Inxykree absorbed the powers, abilities, and knowledge of their prey. But they had never consumed creatures such as these: benevolent, intelligent, born of magical blood and infused with Star Crystal power. Outwardly, the Inxykree were drastically altered, manifesting the sisters’ beauty in a way that made them look almost human. Inwardly, the transformation was even more profound. “What happened? What have we done?” they asked, looking at their changed bodies, at the carnage on the floor. “What are we?” An Inxikrah male entered, glaring at them. “You are not Inxykree,” he said, baring his cruel fangs. “This is not your Abyss,” he shouted and attacked. The Inxykree had lost their talons and fangs, but had kept their speed and strength — and had gained the skills of the five sisters. They seized the bloody weapons from the floor and slayed the Inxikrah. “He’s right,” they said in one voice. “We are Inxykree no more. We must find an Abyss of our own.”