Tijil's Fang - A Prelude
[Continued from the May 1999 Issue]
Darklord Khatellu was consumed with working with Mordak's Coffin and the Tome that had accompanied it. Day after day he would spend at the Coffin trying to decrypt its ancient carvings and rebuking his Nadziranim for not being able to help him. Mordak's Tome was a great help, but the information in it also frustrated the Dark Lord. Phrases like: "Use The Fang of the Cobra Mistress to control the door to the Realm of the Dead" caused the Darklord to growl in dismay. Rarely had Khatellu been so touchy. Even less rarely had it been so dangerous to be in the same room as the Darklord as when he experimented with the Coffin.
The Coffin worked differently depending on how it was prepared before being closed. Already had Khatellu explored the Coffin's ability to cause rapid death and decay on anything that was put into the Coffin. Gleefully had Khatellu forced Giaks, Drakkarim, Helghast, Vordaks, Humans and Liganim as well as several other creatures to lie in the Coffin and be consumed by its powers. Khatellu and his Nadziranim had been quite interested by the messy, smelly results of these experiments.
Khatellu was very frustrated that he didn't possess the Fang of the Cobra Master because it was mentioned in many places in Mordak's Tome; and, most especially because it enabled a special power in the coffin. To Khatellu this power was the principal reason for him accepting Wayl's suggestion to procure Mordak's Coffin in exchange for the Sphere of Decay. Khatellu knew that the Cobra Mistress was a name often used for Tijil, a Lieutenant of Agarash the Damned who had been incarcerated by the Elder Magi for millennia. According to legend, Tijil had foreseen her own imprisonment and encapsulated her powers into her two Fangs before she was imprisoned. Legend has it that one of her Fang's fell into the Cener Druids hands and that they used it to defeat the Elder Magi. However, it mysteriously disappeared during the Golden Age of the Shianti. The Cener Druids long lamented its disappearance. The other Fang is rumoured to have fallen into the hands of Vag'kroag, the ruler of the Hellswamp. After Vashna's death, several Darklords tried to get a hold of this treasure. It was rumoured that some of them succeeded but, to the Darklords dismay, their minions never returned and the knowledge of the Fang's whereabouts was lost.
Khatellu licked his sharp teeth in anticipation. Wayl had told him that she had been able to determine the Fang's position--that it was to be found in the Durncrag mountains not far from the start of the River Xane. Khatellu entered the Throne hall in the fortress of Nadgazad. Surveying this vast chamber he noticed with satisfaction that all the creatures he had summoned were present. Khatellu moved gracefully to the throne and paced back and forth watching the congregated creatures. First, there was a dozen or so Drakkarim led by the Drakkar called Fezmarn. In addition, there were a few Nadziranim and a human called Amantar, flanked by a giak. Khatellu suddenly felt hungry--he sprang...
Lone Wolf © TM Joe Dever 1984-1999.