I’m not sure if this still qualifies for the contest as I am planning to write more parts but I thought I’d submit it anyway and see what happens ¯_(ツ)_/¯ anyways I do hope y’all enjoy.
The wind rushed through his ears like a storm, a searing green light sped past his vision and up into oblivion. He felt his bones crack, his muscles tear. He was dying. This was to be the end of him. After all he had done, and all he had yet to do, he was going to die. Disappearing into the mist like rain into a gutter.
Once he shone brightly in the sky, a beacon of power and majesty forged from his blood and kept with his cruelty. He was once Rasknitt, the Grey Seer. He was once mighty.
His throat tore with a scream he could not hear, a belting of uncontrollable burning his flesh could not feel. His mind was calm, and his thoughts appeared to him floating in the void. In his last moments on earth, Rasknitt looked upon his life. The memories were scattered, swept away by the winds of death, but he had to see for himself. He had to know his legacy would be preserved in the book of his existence. So he clung to what he could. He reached out and grasped a page. The first page. And he read.
Dark and dirty was the burrow in which he was born. The melodic screams of the Brood Mother crescendoed through the tunnels and caves of the nest, losing their power as they travelled further underground. But within the dirt and timber dwelling built generations ago, her screams were forceful still.
Through darkness and haze, a great mass was pulsing. Up, down. Inflating and deflating in a macabre cycle. With each thrust, the screams would wake anew. On the floor there formed a river of puss and gore, streaming down like a waterfall from the body of the strained Brood Mother. Riding down that foul brook was a small brown rat, eyes glued shut by rheum. Soon another rat followed, falling to the floor.
When the screams at last subsided, there sat covered in blood and birth six tiny bundles of fur and flesh, climbing over each other, whining, scraping, gnawing, searching for food. Like a mountain they scaled their mother, now deep in a drug-induced slumber, and feasted on her flesh. It was in this dark, dismal den that the Skaven who would one day be known as Rasknitt was brought into this world, but it was not here that the Grey Seer was born.
Deep in the caves, far below the Skaven nest crept a sly creature. His fur was brown and matted with old blood, his bones were clinging to his flesh in a desperate bid for survival, but his eyes shone deep with a fury that was still very much alive. The name of this creature was, until that day, Festolk. As he grasped the cave walls he gazed upon something that he knew then and there would alter the course of his life forevermore.
A great monument of pale light moving down into the darkness from the world above caressed in its arms the small body of a grey Skaven. After years in the darkness, Festolk was drawn to the celestial figure in a daze. He knelt beside the rat, running his hands over ragged robes and chains adorned with bells and bones. Hypnotized by the sight, Festolk’s gaze travelled to the Skaven’s head. His eyes were closed, and a small pool of blood was trickling from the base of his neck. Looking up towards the fiery light, Festolk assumed the rat must have lost his footing far above, and had fallen to his doom.
More curious still than the blood now pooling around Festolk’s legs was the skull of a strange creature worn atop the head of the silver Skaven. It was the skull of a beast, with four great horns reaching outwards in a spiral, two near the temples, and two near the jaw. The sockets of the skull were dark and sinister, seeming to stare into his soul. As he gazed, Festolk began to hear in the recesses of his mind a faint and frantic whispering, creeping closer, louder and louder.
Festolk reached down towards the skull, his arms moving as though they were weighed down by water. He placed his polluted hands on the immaculate thing, feeling the flowing texture of the bone. The eyes of the Skaven snapped open. With a burning scream, a claw reached for Festolk’s throat and squeezed. Suddenly startled, Festolk reeled back, escaping the Skaven’s grasp at the cost of his blood. Frantic, Festolk reached for a stone, and before the Skaven could defend himself, the rock was cascading down upon his head. Up, down. Thrusting and hoisting in a macabre cycle, harvesting blood and brain alike until the once grey Skaven was long dead; and in the haze of fury and fear sat the helm, watching.
The pristine skull stained red with remains as Festolk claimed his prize. Gazing into the eyes of the helm, he knew it was a gift from the Horned God. A second chance at life. He began to laugh. He laughed like he never had before. Opening his mind to the murmurs begging to get in, he cried, “Yes! Yes! Enter-come and make me new-new at last!”
Raising the helm to the sky, he basked in the glow of the distant sun, and made a vow before the Horned God, “From this day forth,” he proclaimed, “Festolk the Broodbringer is gone-dead! Let me be known forevermore as Rasknitt, the Grey Seer!”
Blood dripping to his brow, he donned the helm. In his eyes he knew it: his life had truly just begun.
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© Post "[CONTEST]? The Book of Rasknitt [Part I]" for game Warhammer: Vermintide.
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