We warped back to the Corpse Maze to find all traces of Effie and Ron and the camp completely gone. The Corpse Maze however remained. The walls of garden hedge and bodies were still frozen silently. The eerie nothingness from the lack of wind and surrounding sound creeped me the fuck out.
“We have to find Dog and Effie! They must be in the maze!”
“Why would they have gone in there? The undead are unaffected by blade and magic that isn’t Holy.”
“Do you know any Holy magic?”
“No. Do you?”
“Shit no man, I just heard about it and I doubt a vampire is going to have something like Holy magic.”
“That’s true, undead creatures are incapable of getting or using Holy magic. The ability to use it normally is a very rare occasion for living folk as well.
“Then why would you ask me if I could use it?”
“You know, in case it’s a super-secret skill you have.”
She whispered, “super-secret” like the secret might get out. For someone so brilliant she certainly was not the brightest crayon in the box. I held back my retort and attempted not to exacerbate shit.
“How do you fight the undead then?”
The thought occurred to me in the awkward silence. If magic and blades are ineffective then what do we do? I was hoping for a “super-secret” skill of my own.
“You just bash them…”
“That’s the spirit, idiot.”
I decided on just sheathing my sword and bashing anything with that. We didn’t really waste any time and entered the maze. The maze itself was surprisingly impressive. It’s not like a giant hedge maze made of plants and corpses wasn’t already impressive, but the walls reached higher than even my enhanced vision could reach and inside was much larger than you thought it might be.
There were at least 10 different paths on the inside. The circular clearing we stood in just branched off a shit ton of ways and about 10 feet into each path the fucking maze was remaking itself. This was not going to be easy, but I had to save Dog and Effie and find Eddie’s list. I figured we would use the ‘always turn right’ method, but I wanted to test some things out first.
“All the fire magic I know would kill us all. Do you have anything more…directed?”
“I think we both know I do. I was just casting fireballs earlier. Don’t be stupid, you undead joke.”
“You really are a rude little shit, aren’t you?”
Casidhe panted heavily and squirmed at my reprimand. What in the psychotic hell is her problem? The Mesmer must be letting up.
She cast a smoldering ball of fire and it exploded on contact with the wall. Just as I feared, the hole was impressively large and spread slightly, but within a couple of ticks, it repaired itself and spit out a skeleton in exchange. The skeleton rose up brandishing a sword, but then quickly put the tip in the ground and took one knee.
“Greeeetings your Majesty, kekekekekekekeke.”
It ended its strange careening voice with a very classic skelly cackle. Once again, we had someone calling me ‘Lord’, or ‘Master’. I mean who did I have to fuck to just be called Vampir? I pondered why I decided Vampir instead of Shawn, but I would stick a pin in that for later. I laid the Mesmer on thick when I spoke for both the skeleton and Casidhe’s sake.
“Kekekekekekeke. Yeeeessss, you are the Undead King, are you not? He who reeeesssiiidesss in the Corpse Maze.”
“I mean sure, did a dog of demonic descendant and a small smoking bag of leather enter here?”
“Can you take me to them or bring them here?”
“Are you assssskkkkkkiiinnnngggggg or ttteeeellllliiinnnggg? Kekekekekekeke.”
“Are you assssskkkkkkiiinnnngggggg or ttteeeellllliiinnnggg? Kekekekekekeke.”
Is there an echo in here?
“Yes, you skeleton, take us there now.”
“Noooo. While you may be the Undead King, you are nooootttttt my Lord.”
“You are as exhausting as this idiot and Ron put together, aren’t you? Do as I said or die.”
His creepy laugh was cut off as I pulverized his skull with my sheathed sword. We were going to have to get through the maze the right way which happened to also be the fucking hard way. I told myself it was just part of the ‘adventure’, but it was still bullshit. I chose the middle path and pushed forward. The maze immediately moved to block my path, but a well-placed blast opened the way again. Once we passed through the freshly made hole, an assortment of skeletons and zombies were regurgitated out of the wall. They all took a knee.
“Yooouuurrrr Majestyyyyyy. That is not the way. Kekekekekeke.”
“Which is the right way then?”
“I cannot tell you thaaaaaat. Kekekekekekeke”
“How about any of the rest of you? I am your Undead King am I not?”
“Yeeesssssss, but not our Lord. Kekekekekekekeke.”
The chorus of creepy skeleton laughter intermingled with the throaty chuckle of the zombies’ moans. This was like the Roast of Vampir and these undead idiots were hecklers and also up on stage with me like a twisted cacophony of idiots.
“Ok then who is your Lord?”
“Theeeeee Undead King, of course. Kekekeee---.”
I ended the speaking skeleton abruptly with my sword. His head was crushed but his body continued to stumble around looking for the pieces of his skull.
“Get yourself some super glue and you’ll be good as new.”
The other skeletons and zombies moved to intercept me, but luckily Casidhe had my back on this one.
A blast of wind tumbled zombie and skelly alike into one another and against the wall with considerable force. She turned to me proudly with a question.
“What was that spell you used back at my house that healed me?”
“Hemiowgun? Its just one of the spells in Vampir’s little black book.”
The stars fell around us. Apparently, just saying the spell activated its effects. Casidhe stared at the effect intently before she continued.
“That must be Custom Magic.”
The name didn’t ring any bells, but I hadn’t exactly been diligent trying to sort my memories or reading Vampir’s insane scribbles.
“Yeah, it’s magics only possible once you have control of The Source. You channel its power and affix words to effects, essentially making whatever you imagine capable. Many of the Great Sages were forced to use Custom Magic to contain and control their immeasurable power.”
That seems important to know. We continued on as we spoke, blowing holes in walls and smashing and blowing the undead out of the way. They continued to bow to me when I appeared, but at this point all they did was cackle annoyingly. I was well over that shit, so we stopped trying to communicate and kept on moving. The walls kept moving and reforming and it had fully frustrated the shit out of me.
“FUCK THIS FUCKING MAZE!”
“yes, master I’m over…”
Ron sounded far away, but not so far that I couldn’t get to him. His voice cut off abruptly causing me no end to concern. We hurried to where I last heard his voice. We took turns blasting holes into the walls in our path until finally we came upon a stair case. Shit I forgot this was also a TALL labyrinth. Fuck my life.
Name: Vampir Darkness - (Shawn Mullins)
Date of Birth: Reign 23rd 3015
Title: Undead King
Race: Vampire (Human)
Hair: Black (Licked Clean)
Eyes: Red (Evil Glow)
Current Value: 239.9 million Gold Coins, Approx. 149 trillion Gold Coins worth of Invisibility Potion, Resurrection Token
Magic Pocket: Pretty much one of everything (semi-verified), Journal of a Lunatic, Bottomless Bottle of Ron’s Piss, Large collection of Magic Tomes and some childhood photos
Powers: Voice Mesmer, Animal Transmutation, Super Strength, Mach 3 Speed, Immunity, Kinesis (Psycho), Regeneration
Magic: Derbegun (Cleaning Spell), Hemiowgun (Healing Spell), Stop (Time Spell), Dauntlet (Shadow Armor), Raze (Sea of Fire), Folioran Magic, Warp
Weaknesses: The Sun, Holy Water, Dog, Cries Blood, Leyara, Grave Box at Witch’s, Blood Rage, Not very funny, Still has a Lack of Patience for Bullshit, Creepy Skeleton Laughter, Hedge Mazes
Strengths: Barfights, takes arrows to the chest like a champ, Digging Holes, Fungus House Demolition, Blood Rage, Sword Fighting, Can Learn New Magic, Gravel Throwing, Casidhe