The Accession Apparatus - Chapter 1 Prose in Karenth | World Anvil

The Accession Apparatus - Chapter 1

Myreh knelt next to the body. She placed her hand a few inches above the corpse and looked around, not seeing anyone in the alley. “All clear?” she asked as if to no one.
  Her hair moved around the back of her neck as a small dragon head poked out by her ear. “No one around, unless they are undead.”
  “That’s not funny, Gilly. Remember last time?”
  Gilly snickered softly to himself as Myreh’s hand began to glow a soft orange. She spoke a few words, words rarely heard on Earth. Hundreds of images flashed through her mind, some of the victim, and some of his attacker. The flash ended with a single image, a man Myreh recognized. “Great, another Nethen. What’s he doing on this world?”
  “I don’t know, my sweet.”
  Her hand stopped glowing as she stood up, “Your feet really tickle, Gilly.”
  “And your hair smells funny,” teased the dragon as he tucked his head under the collar of her trench coat.
  Myreh stepped away from the body and made her way out of the alley to one of the mini-room hotels nearby where she was staying. Once inside, Gilly emerged from behind Myreh’s hair as she removed the trench coat revealing a traveling dress unlike any found on Earth. “Where are we again, Gilly”?
  “Denver on the world of Earth.”
  “I don’t remember it stinking this bad last time we were here.”
  “That was over seventy years ago. Don’t you remember?”
  Myreh paused and looked out the window. Many of the buildings were old, but covered with newer style light fixtures, but lacking any sort of cleaning for years. “Any idea how to find Dallont?”
  “Last time we were here was to look for his brother, and found him the the industrial part of Commerce City. Maybe he came back to get something of his brother’s. Seventy years is a long time to try and find something though.” With that, the dragon hopped onto the counter and pushed his head into the seal of the refrigerator, wedging it open. He grabbed a package of sausages in his teeth and pulled them out. With a single lightning slash with his claw on the package, one of sausages rolled out.
  “Another one? You’re going to get fat.” Myreh grabbed the remaining package and returned it to the fridge.
  “I’m a dragon, not a cow. I don’t get fat.” A large chunk disappeared from the bratwurst as Gilly grinned, pieces of the casing hanging from his teeth.
  “Really? Fine. Let’s catch a ride tomorrow morning and see what we can find. For now I’m turning in.”
  “Your vernacular is coming along nicely considering we’ve only been here for a week on this go around. Where did you even hear that?”
  “I’m not really sure. Must of got it on the street.”
  As the morning sun rose, Myreh stepped out the car onto the cracked asphalt parking lot. Weeds found their way up many of the cracks in the hard pack and concrete walkway leading up to the old dilapidated building.
  “That coat looks really out of place in these temperatures.”
  “And my outfit wouldn’t stand out more?” she quipped back.
  “Your point, love.”
  As the taxi pulled away, Myreh and Gilly made their way toward the building. The door opened with a loud squelch and the two entered inside, Gilly tucked around Myreh neck. “Myreh, he’s here.”
  A chill ran down her spine. Gilly never used her name unless there was imminent trouble. She reached into her coat and pulled out a 1911 style pistol. “Where did you get that, love?”
  Myreh glanced to her side, “How long have we been together? I need to keep some semblance of belonging in this world. It’s my focus.”
  “I like the scepter better, my sweet.”
  “Quiet down. He’s around here somewhere, isn’t he?” The presence of her pray brought a quick sensation of anxiousness.
  She held the pistol uncertainly in both hands having only seen their use a few times on TV.
  “Upstairs,” whispered the dragon, pushing his snout into her neck to point the direction.
  Myreh nodded and quietly, carefully ascended the stairs. Continuing down the metal catwalk, she passed several large, old and rusted pipes going in various directions around the plant. The catwalk opened onto a large concrete floor, empty except for a large boulder and three men standing around it, two of them looking at her.
  The third man turned around as she entered the room, his tweed jacket brushed up against the stone causing the rock to flash orange briefly. “Ah, you’re here. I was wondering if the Magister would send someone to find me. But I don’t know you. You must be new.”
  “Stop him!” growled Gilly.
  “What are you doing here?”
  “Apparently they didn’t send their best or brightest.”
  Myreh felt her blood begin to boil.
  “Boys, if you would get her out of here.”
The two other men began to walk towards Myreh. Seeing the gun, he nodded in the direction of the firearm to the other man, and both drew pistols. Myreh quickly raised the lapel of her coat between herself and the two men. Multiple gunshots smashed into the coat, sending Myreh to the floor with the force of impact, but she was unharmed from the projectiles.
  She scrambled to her feet, startling both men, and in a single swift stroke of the pistol, a beam of purple light whipped out out the gun, slashing through both men like butter, causing them to crumple to the ground physically unscathed, but unconscious.
  The remaining man in tweed’s eyes widened, “No, that’s not possible, no one has that control.” He turned back to the stone shouting, “Good luck catching me now.” He jumped on top of the rock, a bright orange light filled the air as his body disappeared.
  “What now, dear?,” Gilly looked down at her coat, “Oh, and your poor cloak.”
  Looking down, Myreh could see her coat had changed back to her long brown and green traveling cloak. Shrugging away the comment, she brushed shards of shattered lead from the velvet like fabric. “Well Gilly, isn’t that evonite? I’m guessing there is enough power there for us to jump from this world.”
  “That size of stone probably has enough power for a few more jumps before it recharges. Well a few more jumps for someone like you, my sweet.”
  “Bet he didn’t think of that.”
  “Bet not,” agreed the dragon as he yawned and stretched out across her shoulders, “Shall we?”
  Myreh walked up to the large stone, mumbled a few words causing her pistol to change its shape to a dull silver handled rod about a meter long with a red stone topper the size of a small apple. “Ready to find out where we land?”
  Gilly smiled and there was a bright flash of orange light.
  As the flash subsided, Myreh and Gilly could see they were in a desert, around dusk. Their attention changed to the man in tweed standing but an arms length away.
  He panicked as a net of purple engulfed him from Myreh’s scepter, and it pulled him into the red stone. The stone pulsed briefly with scintillating light and grew slightly larger.
  “Where are we now?” she asked without a pause for the celebration of the capture of their prey.
  “Based on the construction of that crumbled wall over there, ancient Nethen for sure, I would say we are back on Karenth, deary. More specifically, near the center of the old lands, maybe a little to left.”
  “Well, we’re stuck here for a few days unless you have a block of evonite in your gullet.”
  “How dare you claim I eat rocks.”
  “I never said you eat rocks. You simply swallow them whole. Don’t deny it.”
  “Yah, well.”
  Gilly went silent as a woman’s boisterous laugh pierced the evening air from beyond the crumpled wall, some distance away.
  “Um, Gilly. Aren’t these lands supposed to be abandoned?”

Cover image: by Scott Weeks


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