January 30, 2012
The tons of fallen earth had little effect on me in my current state. It felt comforting somehow, and gave me a calming clarity that helped soften the manic visions and allowed me to think. Yig blesses me; I am one with the Earth. I moved through the dirt and stone like a man through water and reveled in the sensation until I remembered about Ethan.
I had attempted to use my abilities to protect him, but even if he wasn’t crashed, he would soon run out of oxygen. Finding him was an easy task. He glowed a blazing scarlet and I moved through the tunnels of earth with ease.
Never had I felt such potential. The possession of the Consciousness Crown could drive somehow mad with power, even if the visions of a thousand different lifetimes didn’t press in on you at every moment.
Ethan still lived, but that wouldn’t last long if I didn’t bring him to the surface. Despite the dangers of Edgar and his Darcarre, I realized I didn’t have much time if I wanted Ethan to survive.
I moved through the collapsed tunnel like a diver heading toward the surface. Powers came to me that I hadn’t even guessed at and luckily for my friend they were able to protect him.
I could sense the wall of the mountain ending and I tossed Ethan’s limp form through the last eight feet of earth and he tumbled down the slight hill like a broken doll. It would be difficult to be sure what might lurk out there, so I decided to poke just my head through the side of the mountain and this proved my undoing.
A blast from the last Migo’s gun caught me and despite my increased power, I found myself parallelized.
A sick laugh erupted from Edgar. He was crouched on the back of the Migo and before I could regain control of my limbs, they had swooped in close and his long fingers had torn the crown from my head.
His laughter increased ten fold and he hoped off the Migo’s back and landed not far from where Ethan’s tangled body lay. Ten of his Darcarre watched as Edgar danced in a circle.
I was regaining the use of my limbs, save to the fact I was embedded within the earth up to my neck. Gone were my increased powers that could have overcome such an obstacle so easily.
“Perfect, ha. It looks like you are a captive audience, Primus.” He laughed long and loud at his own joke. “Behold the beginnings of your end and join us as we explode into a new age, an age where I will become Overlord of the Earth!”
Despite my pleas, Edgar’s mad face grinned like the Devil, as he placed the Consciousness Crown over his head.
January 23, 2012
“Come on Jack,” Ethan said, while pulling on my leather. “I know you’re screwed up, but we have to rescue Hannah!”
“Hannah,” I muttered through the web of insanity. A thousand different versions of myself flashed before my shattered eyes. The Consciousness Crown showed incarnations of me on more worlds than my mind could comprehend. Everything from other Jack’s fighting horrid monsters, to images of me doing laundry clogged my vision. I wondered if I’d go blind or insane first, but figured the latter.
Somehow I got to my feet and started moving through the tunnel. I think a few Darcarre tried to stop me, but I barely noticed them as my multiplied abilities tossed them literally into the mountain. Hordes of the possessed slaves came in at me next. I tried to be gentler with these, but my increased powers were beyond my control and I could only hope that I had been able to keep the severe injuries to a minimum as I cleared these victims from my path.
Before long, I was able to see the dim glow of the surface. Ethan still followed, being careful to remain behind me. The visions plagued me as before and I stumbled, falling to one knee.
“Jack,” his voice was light years away.
“There has to be some way to control this. I have to lessen the effects.”
“There must be a way,” Ethan said quickly. “I’m sure Edgar doesn’t into to blow his life in one suicidal wave of destruction. He’s way too selfish.”
“Maybe there are more of me than other people,” I gasped. “Loskeep hinted that I might have something to do with Darken. Some people could have only a few dozen incarnations, while it feels like I have thousands!”
“Oh crap Jack. Let’s just use its power to save Hannah, then we’ll try to figure this out. Maybe she or those splinter Darcarre can help you.”
“Okay,” I managed to mumble and together with moved toward the growing sunlight. The light was grey, not beaming, which either meant a storm was approaching or it was almost nightfall.
We are almost reached the opening when I heard a familiar voice shout. “You think you are so clever, Primus? I planned for this of course.”
It was Edgar and he continued. “I knew you’d save me months. Yes, killing you will bury the crown again, but I’m know right where it is this time,” he laughed.
We tried to sprint toward the opening, but it was too late. A titanic explosion was quickly followed by tons of falling rock and sand. All was darkness as the tunnel collapsed in on us.
January 9, 2012
The dark cave exploded into eight hundred rays of blinding light. Soon is brilliance would have shamed a cloudless June afternoon. I continued to scream as the crown settled on my head and the others, including Ethan, backed away in fear.
I couldn’t be sure whether my enemies fled or were about to attack as the pain from wearing the Consciousness Crown dropped me to my knees. I cried out when hundreds of images tore at my mind. I saw myself, again and again, a thousand forms, a thousand visions. My eyes were awash with a montage of battles. But it wasn’t all fighting. I saw other ‘mes’ at leisure, making love to dozens of different women, In some cases even doing mundane things, like watching a movie or riding my motorcycle down a highway.
Yet, the fighting was there more than not. More foes that I’d care to count were battled. Some were recognizable Xemmoni, but others were hideous forms that threatened to rip my mind apart. I saw my death too. Not all of my incarnations still lived. And a burning hatred filled my gut with rage when I saw the face of Vile Darken involved with killing me again and again.
Ethan might have been shaking me, but I could barely feel him. Through the attack of these distorted tumbling visions, I saw one of the Darcarre rushing in and Ethan attacking him with a shovel.
I tried to focus and see past the insanity. If I couldn’t, we would all be doomed. I attempted to ground myself with thoughts of Hannah and vengeance against Vile Darken. This helped me enough that I saw the Migo raising its odd shaped pistol.
Like a monster moving before a movie screen, I still saw the flashing colors of a thousand lives dancing over the undulating tentacles of the foul creature. My eyes tried to pierce through these visions and I raised my hands. We had conserved our Ki and enough should have remained for me to use one of my Earth spells on it.
My hand shot forward and the Earth erupted like never before. The stone itself became a colossal fist, a hammer of Yig! Never before had any of my spells been so powerful and the Migo erupted in a splatter of putrid puss.
Despite being half mad and mostly blind, my own fist lashed out and punched the Darcarre in the face—and passed right through his head. It died instantly.
Through the waves of a myriad voices and battles, I heard Ethan trying to communicate. “Oh crap, Jack. That was amazing. No wonder that creep Edgar wants this crown. Jack. JACK! Are you okay? Can you even hear me?”
“There are too many. How can there be so many. How can there be so many worlds, so many mes?’
“Jack, maybe you should take it off for now. The other Darcarre ran off. Edgar and his freaks will be coming.”
My hands moved up and grasped the Consciousness Crown. “I can’t, I won’t come off!”