|From The Depths|
After his encounter with Vlad the Impaler, or Alucard as he's apparently calling himself nowadays, Kotal Kahn wandered out into the beaches of Twisted for some quiet contemplation.
He's not at all upset about the outcome of the fight since it really was a very unfair challenge. The moment that Alucard tapped into his connection with Diablo and broke the seals of Twisted that kept his power at bay, the rules of Mortal Kombat had also been breached by calling upon outside aid. Kotal could have very well run at that point and there would have been no shame, his honor unsoiled.
Shoulda, coulda, woulda. Kotal Kahn decided to stay and fight against all odds, feeling that not only his pride but the people of Twisted were on the line, those he has now considered to be his charges. How can Twisted rely on him if he were to run the moment he senses he doesn't have the advantage anymore. Warriors like him are meant to overcome hard challenges and he fought on as any Aztec would have done.
In the end, a loss is still a loss. Though Alucard spared him, Kotal knows he really couldn't have done much else after the vampire had blotched out the sun, the main source of power for the Aztec deity. He has to re-learn the tools he acquired when his enemies got the upper hand and figured his weakness.
He has to re-learn his Blood Magic.
With the setting sun upon the watery horizon, Kotal Kahn stands upon the docks and cuts his palm with his ceremonial dagger, spilling God blood upon the dark waters. "Heed me o' primal powers of strength! I, Huitzilopotchli, call upon thee! The Gods before Gods!! Honor thine pact forged so long ago! Sealed with blood and bound by honor! Return to me the power of a BLOOD GOD!!"
It is different that the last time. When Kotal Kahn last called upon the powers of blood, the gods before the eldergods shone power down upon him making him feel like he no longer needed the sun to empower his skill.
This time, that blood red light shines from beneath the sea, which swirls and spins and foams in anger. Perhaps the ocean is having some kind of indigestion.
It begins to seem like really this is the case, as the waters soon spit out a mass of refuse towards Kotal Kahn. The stench is noticeable enough to cause the War God to hold his nose, and his eyebrows furrow in concern at the mess spat at him. Do the blood gods refuse him??
"Is this how my sacrifice is rewarded!? Spat upon after having proven my worth!?" Says an outraged Aztec God as he screams to the skies. It is only for curiosity's sake that he approaches the mass of debris thrown at him by the sea, glowing golden eyes of his narrowed in disdainful concern.
That mass is a wreched sight indeed, heaps of twisted decaying seaweed, ancient sailcloth from some long sunk ship, twists of old rigging ropes, and not a few bones of some long dead sea animals. Amongst this mass though seems to be some manner of form, a small sound spills from the floatsom, a sigh really, nothing more but it moves on the night winds like a singular note of music. A twitch and a shift then a hard jerk is seen from the pile and a wide black tail fin slaps at the sand.
Kotal has always been wary of calling upon the gods before gods to strengthen his already monstrous might, but here in the realm of Twisted, even the gifts from such primordial beings can become... well....
The Aztec hears that strangely melodic sigh and a tailfin pushes itself from beneath the trash to wiggle about. This causes the Cuachic to frown even more profusely until he can bear his curiosity no more. With a wave of his hand, he sends a small wave of chi to pass over the pile of debris and push it out of the way to reveal what manner of fish may lay beneath.
Otherwise his eardrums really would have exploded by the unexpected sonic blast that this creature lets loose. Despite having the strength to shatter glass - and truly most solid structures - the Aztec can feel the hint of mournful sadness to this creature's voice. A banshee? Wonders Kotal momentarily.. like Queen Sindel?
Kotal has sufficient time to brace himself for the explosion of sound and he stands tall and unmoving under the shockwave of screeching death. Where mortal men would have the insides of their heads liquefy by the sheer force of the blast, the Aztec instead simply holds his ground and regards the fish with long human like hair. He holds a hand up to attune with the chi of this creature, and even while she still sings her song of death.. Kotal gives a vicious smile.
The old ones have not forgotten Huitzilopotchli it seems. This.. is exactly what he needed.
Kotal advances towards the vampire mermaid completely ignoring her sonic boom and pushes her hair away from her face. Then, as she continues to scream, he brings his hand right above her head and squeezes a tight fist to pour the blood that spills from his palm into the mermaid's mouth. Feeding her the empowering blood of a God.
Sensing movement and hearing foot steps in the sand the siren lifts herself, pushing up with her arms to arch her sinuous body on the sand. The moon plays over pale skin and black pearl scales. Her voice echos over the water and in her muttled confusion the creature can't quite figure out how this other is still coming toward her. Her voice should have paralyzed it with fear at the very least. Where is she, what is this place and what is coming for her. She is vulnerable on the land and yet she has no time to shift herself to a more suitable form before the being is upon her. When she is touched and her great mass of black hair is lifted from her visage, she lifts her face is ferocious defiance and bares her mouth of wicked sharp teeth, drawing lips back and gnashing them like a snapping dog. Her dark eyes are narrow and one hand lifts with outstretched claws when the first drop of living blood hits her lips. The heat of it the salted perfection quivers on the edge of her lower lip then spills into her mouth. She gasps, her body arches deeper as if she were a magnet and being drawn up to the source of that iron filled perfection. She had not fed in so lomg, having feaster off the last living thing in her home realm ages ago. Even the blood drinkers that came after the taint did not out last her and so that hunger clawed at her for what seemed like eons, though how does one know time at the bottom of the sea. This offering of blood was like nothing she had tasted before, it was filled with power, the essence so much more then she had ever taken in before. Lost in the ecstasy of the blood her hand darts forward and up and her tallon like claws dig into the turquoise flesh of the others wrist and she clings to it, half pulling it down even as she tries to pull herself up to lock her mouth and all those teeth into flesh.
'The smell of desperation'
The Aztec thinks that Reptile would agree with him when he deduces that this one reeks of it. This strange creature, as beautiful as she is no doubt deadly, sends waves of unending despair. Kotal really doesn't even need to atune to the mermaid's chi to tell that she has suffered greatly. Half starved and driven nearly mad with hunger and loneliness, it is a wonder how she is even still alive. The Aztec does not doubt that starvation is quite possibly the worst death for a vampire, if they can even die from such a thing, to think that they'd just remain there shriveled and unmoving for the remainder of their unnatural life. A fate that not even the tainted deserve, thinks Kotal.
Even when the Cuachic sees those fanged teeth and claws that remind him so much of his hated enemy, Mileena, he can't help but feel that this creature needed him as much as he probably needs her.
That said, Kotal has previous experience with taming obvious wild beasts such as this one, and he knows that being too giving with the gifts of his blood can be interpreted as weakness by most predators. One does not drink of Huitzilopotchli's blood freely-- that is something that has to be earned.
As the mermaid lifts her face to try and dig her teeth into the turquoise skinned man's hand, Kotal grasps her by the neck and holds her down with massive strength, well beyond the might of even an elder vampire.
"Who are you?"
So close to that fount and then...denial. She gasps and reaches even as a hand finds her sleek throat. Having been arched up backward as she was the press of that hand pushes her to the side and then onto her back to pin her to the sand. She writhes in a flair of rage, no one has with stood her before not has kept her from a meal of flesh and blood once she has had it so close. Another discordant shriek spills from her and she thrashes her tail sending sand flinging about. Her tongue darts over her lips to gather that nectar still staining them then tries a new tact. Her body softens and those dark eyes lift to the turquoise skinned being and lock to them. He is not cutting off her voice clearly and so she brings forth the first trembling note of song. The tone is crystalline clear, poinient and painfully sad. Notes build upon notes as she gathers her song, sorrow, suffering, a pain that can only be quenched by his coming to her, letting her touch him and draw intimately close. Her song is a living thing, wrapping him in notes that are ment to touch the soul, to caress the mind and draw in even stalwart and hardened hearts.
Instead, she unwisely decides to start singing and try to compel Kotal Kahn into servitude.
Even the Aztec deity has to admit that if he kept listening to that song of aching, beautiful agony, in that close proximity even he would be enthralled, or at the very least be left rendered helpless, yet another victim of the hypnotizing song of a siren. This is even more so evident because it is night time, where Kotal is at his weakest and also he is bound by the chains of Twisted.
But just as he told Caliga some time before, Kotal is no stranger to fighting at less than full power, and this has made him into a very resourceful foe that relies far more on his skill that he does brute strength and power.
The moment that the siren begins to trash about and sing, Kotal already knows what she's trying to do, and he presses the ridge of his hand into the siren's neck, perfectly squeezing her windpipe to block all air from coming out from her lungs.
He knows that vampires don't need to breathe to live, but with no air coming out of her throat, she can't move her vocal cords. Meaning no song.
She could feel the turquoise man's resolve slip just a fraction. She knew she could have him if she were able to sing a little longer. When that hand pressed down the song ends in a very undignified squeek and a great deal of thrashing and tail lashing. She had been so long alone that she had nearly forgotten how to civily deal with others, not that she had ever been good at it in the first place. Merfolk had not true society and were for the most wild beings that simply lived on the joy of living. Taint that and one gets a darker thing that exists to feed and little else. When nothing she does garners her freedom or further feeding she is left lost as to what to do, she is trapped and unable to escape, the land is not a place for a siren in her natural form and it leaves her able to do little but thrash and then flop back frustrated and angry, eyes flashing defiance at the man.
One move of Kotal's hand was all it took to remove the mermaid's more powerful tool. It was a pity too that this mermaid appeared to be so mindless because of her vampiric nature. Had she truly managed to enthrall Kotal, she would have a legit deity at her disposal, to think that she would use him as nothing but a mere snack. How very undignified.
Kotal can see that she is little more than beast as she is now, the way she looks at him in rage and defiance is much the same as a rabid dog would bark at someone trying to leash it. She doesn't seem to be all that concerned for self preservation at this point if she's actively incurring the wrath of a War God.
And yet, despite all this, Kotal can tell that there is something more behind those black pools that are her eyes. All he has to do is remind her that she is not an animal. Surely, if she can sing she can talk, and she can communicate then she can be reasoned with.
"I will not harm you, I promise." Begins the Aztec, "Answer my question and I will quench more of your thirst."
Kotal doesn't stop squeezing her neck though, he'll take it as a sign of her compliance once she stops trashing about and gnashing her teeth at him.
Maddening hunger has been her only companion for ages. She knew others, long ago but even then she was an alien to them, not in thier ranks but around them just the same. How long ago was it since the Lady of the land and her worriors took flight, since the dragon warrior left Nox , never to return. She had become more beast then person in her madness, even the great sea monster choribdis finally sucumm to her hungers after being her only companion for so long. Why did she not find oblivion when she threw herself into the whirlpool. She knew not of gods and honestly cared little for self preservation but the promise of at least a temporary halt to her hunger had her closing her eyes and going limp in the sand. If the man lied then so be it, perhaps she would find oblivion yet.
Although truly he could not blame her. Huitzilopotchli knew of mermaids; comely children of the oceans, whimsical creatures that knew not other than dance and song. He also knew of vampires, the children of the night, horrendous, depraved beasts that have succumbed to carnal needs for the sake of immortality.
But the Aztec had never heard of a mermaid turned with the taint. To corrupt such a once innocent creature was not unlike forcing an angel to a demon, and as he knows, the purest of souls often make for the most heinous of villains.
Kotal held her no ill will, but she also couldn't trust her yet. Therefore, he merely released the pressure on her neck so she can speak again but not enough to let her go free, she was still his prisoner, and he was making sure she was aware of that.
Stillness, flesh as cold as the deep sea. The siren lets herself be utterly slack and devoid of motion. When she feels the pressure on her throat ease she instinctively swallows and draws a breath. Her chest rises with that breath but it is softly released in nothing more then an accepting sigh. She did not know this being but his life force was appealing, his power undeniable. She lay remembering faces, dark eyed warrior with shining blades that smiled and mocked her over his face coverings. For a moment she wonders if he still lives and then the thought is gone and she lifts her eyes to the man above her. Her voice is a soft breath, musical in its way but not intentionally enthralling "I am hunger and death, the last and the lost."
She will only be a problem if Kotal Kahn lets her to be one. As the Emperor of Outworld, it has been his job to pacify monsters far more violent than this one, monsters that have violence impregnated into their very being and souls, not an acquire taste like this poor wretched creature. He learned how to deal with them and by extension he knows how to handle this one too. It's a simple matter of knowing which sticks and apples to use, and knowing when the sticks and apples can be interchanged.
"Surely you have a name, Lost One." Says the Aztec as he squeezes his fist over the mermaid's face and pours his powerful blood over her lips. A mere few droplets to tease her rather than the satisfaction that she actually craves.
As crimson drops hit her lips the power of the blood tingles on her skin and she draws in a sharp gasp of air. Her tongue darts out and sweep her lips and her brow furrows as her body shudders in nearly pained extract. His essance was potent and her body wanted to rise to it. The hold of that hand still on her throat restained her from coming up. Her tail slapped the sand and a soft near whimper spilled from the sirens lips. She had been brought low by by starvation or the once proud creature would not have succumb so easily to this, training. She swallows and lets loose a hard huff, trying to keep herself from lashing out in hunger and rage again. "Ughhh..." she tries to toss her head and only seems to whimper a breathy "Morgana"
The hunger is truly maddening for this one. It is what makes her so powerful and yet what makes her so easily to control. There is duality to everything as Kotal well knows, and he aims to exploit this wisdom to his advantage.
It's almost kind of... pitiful. To see a clear elder being brought down so low, it is less a scene of someone revitalizing a powerful creature back to her true strength, and more someone training a small puppy. Still, belittling her would do nothing but harm to Kotal's cause and he shows proper deference even while in his dominant position.
"Well met, Morgana." He gifts her a few more droplets of blood on her cheek as turns her head to let it pour down to her waiting mouth, the blood glowing with the strength of a warrior and a god, full of life and power.
"I am Huitzilopotchli. But here in this realm, I am known as Kotal Kahn."
"The Old Ones have brought you here to me for a purpose. To restore this land to its former glory."
"Should you assist me in my quest, I can guarantee you that never again shall you hunger for sustenance and companionship."
As those shining drops trace along the side of her mouth, her tongue darts forth to gather them as best she can. She can not argue the power of that blood or how even a small sample makes her hunger both awaken and calm all at once. Just those few drops seem to ease some of the madness though it awakens the pains of regrett and sadness. There is blessing in madness of being lost in it. "I ..do not..know..your old ones...I hold no restoration in me for any land, unless you wish to see it devoured. I know only darkness, there is no light for me. " a few more drops hit her tongue and her mind sharpens enough to question again her reason for being "where am I, why am I here. This is not the afterlife surely..."
"You do, you simply do not know it yet." Answers the Aztec as he releases Morgana's neck, confident now that she will no longer try to resist him. "But you will, once you understand the situation you are in."
"This land is called Twisted, and it is a land born of pure chaos given shape. It knows no boundaries and yet is a prison for all who find themselves here."
"It is no after life, but in a sense it might as well be. There is no escape in this realm, and even in death your soul will still be trapped within the bowels of Mictlan, or Hell, or the Abyss, it has many names given to it by many people."
"Devour all you want, Morgana. The resources of this world are as infinite as the universes themselves. However, Twisted has no nature of its own, it is only as good or terrible as its residents want it to be."
"I have decided that if I am to be stuck here, it will be in comfort. Will you join me in making this the paradise it should be? Or would you prefer to return to your shadows and suffer for all eternity? Ceasing to exist is not an option here."
That chuckle makes her eyes narrow as if she were unsure how to take such. As that hold on he throat is released she pushes herself up on the sand, sitting up and curling her long tail under and around her "hip". Dark eyes blink and search the mans face. His words are strange, she knew of other realms of Duat, that in those realms gods exhisted but she had never had reason to care. That she was in some new realm, trapped again brought a sigh to her lips. She was hard pressed to remember the time before hunger drove her to devour all in her path. Could she be more then a ravenous beast? Her head falls for a moment as she tries to think. Hunger still claws at her and her choices seem small enough. " I make no promise, I do not know the light and yet, I tired of the dark. Solitude wieghs heavy after so long. What are you that you have such power and offer so much. Can you take the taint from my being?"
"As I said, I am Huitzilopotchli." Now Kotal stands to his full height, nearly seven feet tall without counting the feathers on his golden helmet. "But through out the centuries in Earthrealm I have been known by many other names. Ares, Horus, Tyr, Hachiman Yawata no Kami, Malacath. In all of my iterations I have always been the same in nature; the God of War."
"But as I've found in my time here, war is a very limiting domain. I can do little more than destroy and lead. Even with all my power it is not enough to restore Twisted, or those that I have known as my friends."
Is all lost then? Kotal's eyes glow brightly like the sun and he stares down at Morgana with all the presence befitting of a deity. "But there are countless creatures here that share my power. Though it may be difficult to find them amongst the countless lost souls that wander this place, I am confident that there are those with the power to if not free you from the taint, at least allow you to control it."
"For instance.." He continues. "Just yesterday, I fought the strongest blood drinker the realms have ever known. Vlad the Impaler, perhaps the firstborn of your kind. Surely he would have some.. 'insight'.. about your affliction."
The sirens head comes up and her eyes follow that odd man. Her head tilts to the side and she frowns, looking thoughtful. The mention of Horus brings a look of surprize to her "I have heard of that name, in the realm of Duat, the land of the ancients. They lived in the light and ignored the fallen ruin of Nox. I knew the gods not and I am not sure I trust such but, if there is no release from this life then I desire an end to being alone. " she looks pointedly at the man "you offered me an end to my hunger for my answers and acceptance, will you live to that offer? With hunger upon me my mind refuses to clear. Would you press such an advantage?" her brow lifts in something of a chalange as if she were infering he would not be honorable..not that honor means spit to her exept as a means to a meal.
"Yes, I was known as Horus by the people of the desert. The builders of the pyramids and conquerors of the Nile. I bestowed my gifts upon them that lasted them many a centuries, I was most proud of their curved blades and fearsome masks. Great warriors those mamlukes.." He reminisces fondly.
When Morgana questions his honor, Kotal looks sternly down at her, almost appearing as if he's about to strike her down on the spot for such an insolence. He even draws his ceremonial obsidian dagger, but he turns it on himself, cutting the palm of his hand again to draw blood, and squeeze it down upon Morgana. It is a somewhat condescending manner of feeding her, but it establishes but his dominance and his support at the same time.
"Upon my honor as a warrior. You shall feel no hunger or lonesome for as long as you serve me."
As the man takes on that stern look and raises his dagger, her eyes flash and for a moment her teeth bare like an animal readying to defend itself. The slash of blade on turqoise flesh and the scent of blood makes her focus sharpen on that hunger in her. Were it not for her long starvation she might hold out for more from the man but the spill of blood so rich is not to be ignored when one is in need. She knows no shame in truth, any more then a shark knows shame for taking bites from an already dead whale. She lifts her face and parts her lips, letting the flood of blood spill into her mouth. The heat and life in that blood, the power seeps into her, absorbed into her body as quick as it is ingested. His words would annoy her later no doubt, serve, she served non save herself and yet, what would she do to feel the heat of his blood warm her icy flesh, the life of its power sooth a pained ache of hunger that had been on her for longer then she could recall. Each drop of blood is taken as quick as it falls and she shivers in near extacy. She has been known to feast on flesh as well as blood but for now, blood will do.
He allows Morgana to partake on his blood for naught but a brief instance before he opens his palm again, the wound closing and that rich, strong blood ceases to flow.
His blood is only a reward for a job well done, not a snack.
He lowers his hand now towards the form of Morgana, bidding her to take his hand. He will carry her if he needs to, or if she can't summon the strength to walk on land as some mermaids are known to do.
"Come, there are others that you must meet."