Great doors parted as they were approached, taking in a rush of fresh air that was quickly turned sour by the interior. The entering light blackened long before it could illuminate the walls, devoured by the wicked taint that filled the abode. The thick, skull laden portal greedily welcomed its next victim with a ravenous delight. The remains of those long since claimed by the devilish domain greeted the newcomer with maddening cackles and soul bending moans. Rivers of blood poured down from the walls, seeping from the ceiling in a never ending stream. The twisted realm was pleased by another wandering near its confines and bid him to enter. It needed more bones for its decor. It craved more blood to be spilled onto its floor, lapped thirstily from a fresh slay. It demanded more spirits to eternally torment within its ungodly confines. This was the tower into hell, the living Castle of Itnecsa. As the brave or foolish mortal took his final step crossing from the world of peace into certainly painful demise, the massive doors snapped shut with a thundering clash, resounding in the entry's ears as an omen of doom. His fate sealed within the abysmal stronghold, so he did all that he could do. He laughed.
"Rock it, bitch! Let's see what ya got for me," demanded the new comer with a roar beyond fevered. This was no ordinary man who had been baited by the demonic structure as he sought it out himself. Standing amidst the foul air stained with the reek of death, the man took it in a deep breath eagerly, the odour bringing back memories long since lost. His sickly skin shone a shimmer of green under the eerie light produced within the evil place, amplifying the tint his had always displayed, that of a man diseased with a severe malady. Greasy locks of matted, red hair were brushed from out his eyes. A pair of purple lensed goggles were pulled from his beady, stern eyes and rested upon his heavy brows. A delirious smile was worn on his long face, displaying his sharp and yellowed teeth. A heavy jacket hung loosely from his wiry frame of a dirtied green colour, trimmed in worn leather. From out the wide cuffs stuck his long fingered hands, each one shy a digit and tightly gloved in purple cloth. The only thing beneath his coat was a sullied sleeveless undershirt that would be a lie to call white. Off a thin chain dangled a trinket around his neck, a silver arc turned downward. A pair of miraculously white, loose trousers draped over his long legs, held up by a sturdy piece of cloth tied off in the back. How they maintained their pristine shade could never be explained. Two patches of thicker, purple material ran down the flanks of the pants, from the top to the knees. A pair of purple shoes hid beneath the widened ends of the leggings.
What was worn was all the man carried with him. He brought no supplies, no weapons, and no hope. This freak, this specimen of madness, was of ill fame throughout Tellus. He had been called by many names: Four Finger Fiend, The Disaster, and Maniac. Rumors and legends alike guessed at his origins. Most agreed that he was, in fact, of the human race; however, he was abandoned to the wild when just an infant and discovered by cruel fiends who sought to make a meal from his supply flesh, but they decided to turn the morsel into a feast and let him grow larger at first. Over the years, they never took to their promise, not for lack of trying. The bite mark on his left shoulder contests to that. His meat had acquired a bitter flavour from his unusual upbringing, twisting his body as well as mind. Others claimed that they let him go with the cost of sampling his fingers in order to explain their loss, but the truth of the matter was that he hacked them off himself when but a child to deter the nickname given to him by his four fingered, adoptive family, Five Finger Fred. Others gossiped how he came from another world or even another time to the Age of Ruin, whether on purpose or by accident. Others simply stuck to what was known to be true: he was a scourge, a psychopath, and a bastard, but who he was simply was Frederick Greenborne.
He stood within the tower's atrium with his arms spread wide, ready for action. During his cocky display, his beady eyes surveyed the chamber for anything that could be moving or trying to end his stay within Itnecsa early. The fiend saw no foes to face but did find a plethora of rotting carcasses, most of them human. Scarcely visible in the dim illumination, a faint glow traced their broken and maimed bodies. Most looked to have been cut down without even seeing it coming. Scratching his scraggly goatee in musing to the situation, he started his way to the next room, ever cautious of what was happening around him. Reaching the blockade of corpses, Fred extended a leg over the mound to step over it when a lightning fast strike sprung out in front of him. A flurry of golden pincers hacked and sliced through the air, expecting a body to be rended; however, the would-be victim had arched his frame backwards in time, catching himself upon his hands to prevent from crashing his head into the stone floor. Once the fury had passed, Greenborne saw the assailant curled in a hole within the ceiling. It was a strange being, not something he had seen before, but there were plenty of things that fit that description. Here was not going to be an exception. The creature was shielded in a chitinous armour, rough and cragged like a rock, but it shined like gold, an oddity given the grim environment. The squat monstrosity bore four thick forelimbs, each armed with four serrated blades that were able to independently move. The arms were massive in comparison with the rest of its whole, being twice as long as its core length. A tiny mouth surrounded by an assortment of smaller appendages sat in the center of its front face, an exposed patch of rancid flesh wedged between its dorsal and ventral armour plates. A large, round, shiny, black eye sat at each side of the orifice.
Enraged more than surprised by its missed strike, the bug scurried from its hole, dangling by its diminutive hind limbs, as it poised for another attack now closer to him. Sensing the imminent blow, the Disaster rolled onto his elbows, locking half a body from the funeral pile between his legs. He thrust them and the decedent upward to intercept the razor claws, resulting in an explosion of dead man's dust. The erupting cloud blinded the wide eyed monster, unable to close its saucer like oculars, and forced it to escape from its high home. Slamming onto the floor, the hard bricks buckled beneath its weight as it hastily scuttled from the haze and tried to clean its eyes. Its vision blurred by a gray film, it angrily sought out the madman. Pivoting its wide form about, it saw no sign of the human. Assuming its meal to have escaped, it disappointedly shuffled back to its nest. Ascending its amassed grave, it realized too late that one of the deceased was too alive. Disguised under the veil of dust both on himself and the creature, Greenborne had appeared as old and aged as the rest of the mound. When the golden scuttler was exposed, he drove a broken rib, collected from the decimated torso, into a joint, crippling one of its massive arms. A shrill cry was met with a mocking whine from the fiend as he stuffed a disembodied head into its mouth before rolling out of the way behind it. Slowly turning itself around to face the man, the creature's hind quarters were gauged by the man. With a shrug and a running start, Rick plowed through two of the left legs with a sailing drop kick, snapping them at the bend. The bug struggled to maintain its balance, a battle it lost, and teetered over, nearly crushing Fred before he had time to recover from his hard landing.
"I gotta remember," he said to no one but himself while rubbing his sore hip, "not to do that sorta stuff on granite." A smile appeared on his face that fortune lent as he noticed the two removed appendages laying near his feet. They were pointed and made of a rigid material, so they would make decent weapons. Snatching them up, he boasted while swinging them around threateningly, "Whatcha gonna do now, punk?" The tiny limbs wiggled helplessly stranded in the air at first, but, then, its forearms lowered to the floor, splaying out their bladed ends. It rocked back and forth a few times before rising erect, standing on its arms. Greenborne looked on paralyzed as it steadied itself on the four limbs before shifting to only two. Turning about, the chitinous knight stared down the human, throwing out its lamed arm with its claws placed in line like a sword. Passing glances between their choice of armament, Frederick looked to the sky. "Oh... there's the joke. Nice one, jerk."
With surprising speed and gait, the golden sentry dashed forward with its blades swinging. A quickly devised and cowardly crouching roll evaded the saw-toothed edges. Catching himself squatted on his feet, he drove one of the busted fragments backwards into the monster's new makeshift leg, shattering its point against the sturdier plating. After a wincing groan, the maniac sprung up, uncoiling his legs to hop onto the transformed creatures back. He drummed upon its head with the ruined limb and a free fist, screaming ferally as he pummeled. His rage slowly subsided as he came to realize that what he was beating was not the beast's head but just its posterior serving as an imitation head. Busied with the disgust of his revelation, Fred was swatted from atop the behemoth by a mighty blow. Breaking his fall on pile of dried and rotten skin and bones, which, on the other hand, did not disgust him, Greenborne staggered back upright, wiping the blood from his mouth.
"Ew, not mine." Presenting himself again for combat, he sprinted towards the standing bug with both torn limbs held high. A leap into the air carried him directly into a swiftly drawn up pincer. As the claws closed in on his scrawny waist, which left plenty of space within the vice like grip, Fred chiseled away at the base of the blades by driving the severed legs into them. The other arm was brought in to end the man's struggle, but, as it headed towards him, Rick threw his weight to one side, torquing the limb that held him so that it collided with the limb that targeted him. Snapping off one of the claws, it and he plummeted to the floor with nothing cushioning the fall this time. Bruised and sore, the fiend clasped onto the broken blade. His eyes scanned upward for a key point to stick it when he saw it staring him in the face. The creatures true face had been turned downward and was still as exposed as before. With a grim grin, the sharp fragment was thrust deep into a globular eye, squirting out a thick, blue juice. Tearing out the bone knife, twisting it upon its exit for a crueler sensation, the second eye was about to be operated upon if the maniac was not kicked out from beneath the shelled morpher. A torrent of blue continued to drain out from beneath the brute as it charged down the fallen man. Raising a cross clawed foot, it smashed it into the floor repeatedly in attempts to either splice or crush the downed Frederick. Rolling about the increasingly rubbled tiles, the steps were dodged. Rocking back onto his shoulders for one of the escapes with his legs tucked over his body, he thrust them outward with the stunning kick striking against the top of the bug's true head. Following through with the kick, he rolled back onto his feet and carried the momentum into the spike to nail it through the base of an arm that now served as a leg. Greenborne shook the impaled piece to ensure it accomplished all the damage it could before pounding it the rest of the way in and bounding out of the monster's reach.
The golden warrior now dripped from several wounds and many of its appendages were broken or crippled. Relentless to the bloody end, the hulking arthropod limped its way forward to deal and be dealt more punishment. The fiend braced himself against a wall, catching his breath, in the false hope that it might give up or collapse from weakness. With a grunt, he lifted up one of the hollowed carcasses and hurled it at the monster, knocking it over. Returned to its original orientation, the massive creature still crawled forward. Another more annoyed grunt preceded the lunatic's next act. Walking around the disabled critter, he climbed onto its back and grabbed onto an arm. Pulling back further than the joint allowed, he cracked the limb and repeated the process on the end claws. Taking the serrated blades, he drove them into the body with his heels, finally ending its struggle and movements.
"Damn," gasped the maniac. "It's about time, ya bugger." Sliding off the battered scuttler, he was not two steps away before the thought dead body began to stir. "Oh, c'mon! Ya gotta be kiddin' me! What is it this time?" Putting his hands on his hips, he awaited the next drawn out surprise. As the carcass shook and stirred, it stopped just as abruptly as it started, spitting out a little lump from its abdomen. Curiously, Fred leaned in for a closer look to discover a miniature version of the monster he had just slain. The spawn had lacked the spiny armour of the adult having instead a rubbery, pale yellow hide marked with rounded nubbles that reserved the site of future spikes. Also in this stage, its forelimbs were just as long as its rear legs. Its eyes seemed to be the only thing just as big, both beaming and bright with no trace of bloodlust.
"Well, hey, there, li'l guy. Ya're a cute, li'l fella, ain't ya?" the murderer of its mother sweetly chimed. Picking up the still squishy lump, he tickled its underbelly, getting a bubbly reaction he took to be a positive one. "I think I'm gonna be keepin' ya, squishy pie. ... Hm, squishy pie..." The thought quickly passed as he realized he had no dough to make a crust. "Just, uh... don't look behind ya, okay? It was like that when I got here." Oblivious to the horrible truth, the soft shelled grub rejoiced in the same foaming manner as before while its mother shook again, this time spilling out a flood of nymphs who quickly began to scurry about and fill the room. "Oh, screw this noise," declared the fiend, slowly backing out of the chamber before bursting into a full run. "C'mon, squish-squish. Let's go see what else this place got to offer."