• Chapter 4
    The Dirge of Aster
    “Tell me, Thzou, where do they keep the Bane Sword?” Aster asked of the bloodied Thzou. Thzou moaned after Aster struck him across the face again.
    “Even if I were to tell you, you would never be able to obtain it for the villagers have placed a hex of some sort upon the sword!” shouted the bruised and battered Thzou.
    “You best not be weaving a lie or else my wrath will greatly be increased!” and with that Aster left Thzou in the cold dungeons of the obsidian spire.

    The villagers had finished the repairs quickly due to the way in which their dwellings were designed. The slain were put to the flames so as to give more time to preparing for another possible attack from the Fear Tribe. On a nearby hill Aster watched them go about their business while the Fear Tribe encampment on the other side of the surrounding hills prepared. His eyes focused on a withered old man, Enoch. Upon seeing Enoch enter his hut, Aster began to sprint towards the village, unseen. He leaps upon a hut and leaps from roof to roof, unseen and unheard but not unfelt.
    Enoch draws the Bane Sword from its scabbard when it begins to glow and hum, signaling the presence of Aster. Drawing upon the Bane Sword’s great magic, Enoch begins to return to his youthful form after Aster soon breaks through the roof of the hut.
    “Give me that sword Enoch, or I will do you great harm!” growls Aster with the gleam of the Hunter in his eyes.
    “You know I cannot allow that! Even if I were to give you the Sword, it would not be yours for long,” Enoch replies as he surrounds himself in a protective veil.
    “Then so be it,” and with that Aster draws his halberd and strikes it into the ground, opening a portal. The portal quickly widens and takes Aster and Enoch to Arwhelmucrozen, the Land of the Fallen.

    Aster awoke from his deep sleep after twenty years to a world that needed his assistance. But the villager had forged a weapon that can control Aster. That weapon was the Bane Sword. And the villager was Enoch the Dark.

    Chapter 5
    The Death of Enoch
    Aster landed on his feet after the portal spits him out soon after Enoch. Aster grabs Enoch by his leg and throws him against a large dried out tree, splintering it.
    “Give me the sword Enoch!” bellows Aster as he throws Enoch against the tree again, this time falling it. Enoch staggers to his feet, leaning upon the Bane Sword.
    “Why do you want the Sword for, Aster? As soon as you touch it you will be obliterated by the magic in it,” Enoch said between painful breaths. Aster swings his halberd at Enoch and slices a deep gash into Enoch’s chest. Enoch holds his hand over the wound as he slowly falls to his hands and knees. Aster raises the halberd high above his head and looks upon Enoch with a great fury that had not been awaken in decades. Just before the blade bites through his neck, Enoch sees a man running at Aster from behind.
    Aster picks up Enoch’s decapitated head with a bloodstained hand. Aster’s face becomes more bestial as his teeth elongate and sharpen.
    “I am the Aster!” roars Aster, and then feasts upon Enoch’s head. The man dropkicks Aster from behind and quickly disarms him. The man holds Aster down by his shoulders.
    “I don’t care who you be. But you will leave this land for the only way for you to be able to wield the Bane Sword is to become one with the Elf named Heîrok of the Grass Tribe.” And with that the man disappears in a purple fog. Aster stands up and smiles grimly as he teleports himself back to Arwhelix.

    Some say what the Aster becomes depends on the Tribe that the being resides in; some say that the Aster is already a malevolent being. But the truth is, what ever spirit gets to Aster decides its fate.

    Chapter 6
    Heîrok lifts the impaled human from the spear that had impaled him and laid him on a stretcher made from leaves and soft strong vines. Heîrok had been watching this human from the treetops for awhile when a figure suddenly appeared bearing odd markings and holding a halberd. This being swiftly took the human’s spear, impaled him, and went deeper into the forest. At his whistle two great eagles flew in through the treetops and took the man on the stretcher. Bloodied spear in hand, Heîrok sped off in the being’s direction.

    Aster soon reached the hidden civilization of the Grass Tribe and began to question the locals about the location of the man named Heîrok. Some locals said they knew naught of the king’s location and very few seldom even gave him a look in the eye. Finally two armed Enforcers came and tried to apprehend Aster but to no avail for he disappeared in the crowds. He watched the Enforcers search for him in the crowds and smiled as he pulled a small straw and same darts from his pants pouch. With careful aim he hit each of the Enforcers with a dart in their jugular veins.
    “Do you take pride in murdering the innocent?” inquired Heîrok after watching Aster kill the men. Aster slowly stood up straight with his head cocked at an angle.
    “I assume you are the one they call Heîrok?”
    “What be my name to you?”
    “I’ll take that as a yes.” Aster sends a ball of energy at Heîrok who dodges it. Heîrok rolls out of range of the following explosion. Aster grapples with Heîrok, who manages to floor Aster with a great heave. Heîrok’s spear pierces the ground Aster once temporarily laid on. Heîrok feels a hard pressure against the back of his neck and quickly loses consciousness.

    Meanwhile at the spire, Thzou is bashing a large stone against the wooden door of the dungeon. The only progress he has made so far is a slight dent in the wood. Exhausted, Thzou throws the stone aside and falls down into a sitting position with sweat running along his face. He hears footsteps down the hall and then Aster opens the dungeon door and throws a kick into Thzou’s face and then drags him out of the dungeon.

    At the top of the spire Aster has tied Thzou and Heîrok together with both chains and rope, restricting movement if not all. Aster is staring up at the moon; waiting for the moment it will turn blood red for exactly one minute so as to become the Aster.

    Whenever there is a blood red moon the Aster can extend their life span or overcome their greatest weaknesses by absorbing powerful people.

    Chapter 7
    Heîrok Aster
    Heîrok gains consciousness and begins to struggle in his bonds and sees that Aster is oddly distracted by the high moon. He thanks himself for placing the dagger in his boot as he begins to cut the ropes binding him. But how to get rid of these chains he asks himself. Being an Elf he can enhance his breathing to the point to where you can see his ribs plainly and slips from the chains, allowing them to clatter to the ground. Heîrok freezes to see if Aster takes notice of the noise but Aster, in his trance, does not notice. Heîrok begins to drag the still unconscious Thzou away when Aster begins to jerk and become enshrouded by a dark light. Heîrok draws his dagger again and continues to drag Thzou away. The dark light disappears and Aster turns to face Heirok. Aster walks slowly towards Heîrok, who is still fleeing with Thzou.
    “Do not run from me, Heîrok. You are destined to become one with the Aster,” spoke Aster picking up the long chain from the ground. “You cannot escape this tower for the demons inside would devour you in a matter of seconds.”
    “I’d rather fight the demons then you, Erecotìl!” replied Heîrok, nimbly dodging the chain as it whizzes pass him.
    Aster hisses at the name and roars, “Do not say that name elf! You do not know of what you speak!” He then launched himself at Heîrok and Thzou with great rage and fists. Heîrok swung out with his dagger and the blade pierced Aster’s right bicep. Aster fell to the ground with the howl of pain only an animal of the wild could give off. Heîrok moved with Thzou more desperately than before while Aster slowly stood up, wrenching the dagger from out of his arm. Standing at his full height of six feet and five inches, Aster threw the dagger through the air, and sinking deeply into Thzou’s chest, killing him instantly.
    “Erecotìl, you have gone entirely too far!” yelled Heirok, dropping the body of Thzou so as to prepare to fight Aster. “To others you may be known as Aster but to your own brother you will always be Erecotil!”
    Aster stopped for a minute and laughed, “You fool, I have no kindred. My parents became barren soon after my accursed birth! And to claim to be of my kindred would mean you call me a liar!” Heirok and Aster swing at each other, both swings connected to one another’s face. Only Heirok is felled because of the supernatural energy coursing through Aster’s body due to the blood red moon. Aster’s face becomes bestial yet again as sinks his fangs into Heirok’s forehead. Heirok begins to jerk and scream as his essence is pulled out of his body and brought into Aster’s body. Heirok stops jerking and screaming when his essence is fully gone and absorbed into Aster. Aster falls back and slowly becomes consumed into a cocoon of black threads.

    A wandering Orc found the decaying body of Enoch and the Bane Sword nearby. The Orc quickly ate the corpse and took the Bane Sword for himself. The Orc quickly returned to his rocky abode in Death Plateau. Among his few possessions were many weapons acquired from fallen beings along the shore and inside the forests.

    Heirok’s disappearance did not go unnoticed by the civilians of the Grass Tribe for, as his name suggests, he is their king. His only daughter, Kasash, rallied the palace guard to begin searching for her father, no matter what the cost. Unbeknownst to her she would find her father but Aster as well….

    Aster rips open the cocoon as soon as his body stops its constant changing and forming. He steps out of the shreds and unfolds the four great ligaments from behind his back, raises his long head, and swings the blade that formed out of his left hand. The powerful jaws now hold needle like teeth and his nose has now become merely two slits. His eyes are long, small, and red. The holes on the sides of his head that serve as his ears pulse slightly as they pick up the sound of Giroun approaching the water front. Aster throws Heirok’s body off the obsidian spire and jumps down to the water front. Aster lands before Heirok’s body hits the water with a splash. Giroun jumps at Aster’s silence and absence of a bend of knees.
    “What is it Giroun?” Aster asks of the shadow beetle.
    “A company of humans have entered the caves and seem to be looking for a man they call Heirok,” answers Giroun seeing the changes done to Aster.
    “Time to try out my new form then.”