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Wolfran the Knight Avenger


The Last Crusade of Altraumzen

Episode 12: When Titans Fall

Burning his jump jets beyond their intended parameters Wolfran made a desperate lunge up the smooth walls of the chamber. The Knight Captain’s proximity turret on the head of the mech belched rounds in his wake at the incoming fire. Wolfran didn’t need to hear the warning message flashing across his screen to know he was frying his thrusters.

Though the mounts of the Skyfall regiments were considered light to medium they were still deathly heavy in even lighter atmospheres, and Altraumzen was terraformed to match the Lord’s creation. This meant their jets were meant for brief bursts not sustained use. If Wolfran hadn’t been wearing an insulated armored flight suit he knew he would be feeling the spike in temperature as the overheating jump jets melted their mechanisms. The thought made the knight wince. His mount was going to be worse for wear after this tussle.

Another warning light blared this one on incoming ordinance. Unknown ordinance with unknown affects the computer screamed. Even worse, judging by the video footage of his rear view more than four of the cursed rot lasers were going to pass through the screen of fire being laid out by the turret. What happened after the turret ran dry on ordinance was a worry for another minute.

A blast shook the whole mech as the main thruster was automatically ejected from its housing as its internals became unstable. The resulting explosion was a double bladed sword. On one hand the rest of the rotting lasers expelled their energy upon the dropped wreckage, and on the other hand Wolfran’s mount was cast away from the wall while pieces from the melting and shattered thrusters rained down behind his corkscrewing form.

By sheer luck Wolfran managed to stretch out his blade to strike a spindly limb. Though seeming thin compared to the cursed guardian, each spider-like appendage was as thick as granite columns and twice as tough. If not for the partially charged capacitors releasing what pent up energy was prepared in the zweihanderkrieger upon contact little more than a deep laceration would’ve been the result. Yet like all that takes physical form the rules of the body still apply. Yes, even a skinless giant the size of a small mountain had to follow the rules of the physical realm as decreed by the almighty, and so the twitching oozing muscles tensed and released their hold upon the wall in response to the coursing lightning.

Another ear piercing shriek rattled Wolfran’s teeth making his twisting uncontrolled plummet to the floor of the chamber all the more unpleasant. God had been with his sons this day nonetheless. With only a little over half of its horrid limbs suspending the immense weight of the monster the walls themselves broke under the strain and two more spider legs ripped from the wall still clutching the masonry that had shattered under the immense force.

Wolfran’s elation was short lived as the approaching ground loomed ahead, and the shadow of the bulk of the guardian followed him like a collapsing moon on unsuspecting shores. A man seeing his own demise in such strict contrast might be forgiven to give in to the overwhelming forces at work, but Wolfran was stubborn when it came to his oaths. Perishing now would mean that he would fail in his task to drag Konrad to the altar of matrimony to marry a blushing maid of his mother’s preferences. Unacceptable on every level.

So sticking his thumb in the eye of the reaper’s empty socket once more the Captain pulled one of the more desperate moves in his short career. He pulled the ejection override lever with a prayer on his lips, and a curse in his heart for the damned.

With a rush a blast burned through a small reserve of fuel launching the cockpit module from the body of the stricken mech. The blast of momentum was enough for a short flight in this gravity and atmosphere, and every ounce of fuel was needed to avoid the plummeting bulk of the stricken demonic guardian. There was nothing to be done for the flaying limbs crushing both machine and stone, but to pray. It was always surprising how much prayer a man could saturate a half a second with. Let alone curses. Wolfran had experience in both, and was sure the entirety of the unseen spiritual realm heard his plight.

Another explosion surprised Wolfran as the computer showed a flash of his mech combusting before being crushed by the skinless horror. The source made the knight’s blood run cold. There snaking out just before the impending smash of the bulk above was a shadowy shape that made the darkness bright in comparison. A pair of glowing green eyes shone out from a flowing tattered cape with glowing red pagan sigils on its length. The cloak seemed to morph and stretch with the imperceivable body beneath as it twisted in a blinding black flash for Wolfran’s escape pod.

This must have been the unknown ordnance the computer spoke of. The demon had launched a demon it would seem. The knight might even call the strategy barbaric if he hadn’t been tempted to use some of the Grand Marshals aids as projectiles in the past. A dark temptation which his Magnus must never learn of lest they both fall to sin.

A wave of shattered floor and dust filled debris rose up from the thunderous impact of the guardian. The resulting murk hid the horrid wraith from Wolfran’s sight, and then one of the spider limps smacked the cockpit pod. Only a graze, but with a fiend of this size the blow may as well been a full hammer shot from a heavy mech. Sparks flew as the pod bent inward stopping mere inches from Wolfran’s helmet even as the entire pod was sent spinning high above the carnage. A few moments of gut wrenching flight later, and the tortured ball of armored metal embedded itself into the wall of the chamber some hundred feet above the marble floor.

The computer screens went black as even more damage was sustained. Much of the armor plates were folded inwards or ripped from their housing exposing the systems and wiring beneath. But by a miracle of the savior Jesus Christ himself Wolfran realized he was only battered not broken. The sound of thrashing and battle reached his ears through his crushed pod, and helmet despite the complete shattering of his pod’s communication systems. A moment later his helmet computer took precedence, and bypassed the dying electronics to connect directly to the comms network of the Skyfall contingent.

Chaos was the name of the game, but enough could be ciphered from the wild comms to know Konrad had them raking the flanks of the beast with every ounce of fire power available. That was good. Still, it was a concern for a Captain who lived for the next five minutes.

With some difficulty Wolfran managed to wretch his sword from the wreckage. He was not concerned about the hand and half sword’s durability. She was more than just a blade made from metals and arts that befuddled a simple knight's mind. The blade was also blessed by the Wizard of Arms himself. Father’s connections had not been limited to military positions. Pulling the blade from the advanced scabbard Wolfran heard her hum as burning plasma stuck to the blade’s edge magnetized to the metal itself. The spirit of war on the sword made the weapon burn a fierce silver at the smell of battle in the air, and despite the tight quarters Wolfran was able to cut through the metal with ease.

Releasing himself from his prison was almost the knight's undoing however. The hot blade cut through the charred and bent armor like a knife through tough steak. Workable by all means, but not easy. When he finally cut a hole big enough Wolfran was almost grabbed by a scally hand with deep reptilian claws that was as albino as a man on his deathbed. The dark hanging cloak that hung from the arm left no doubt who the ghastly appendage belonged to.

The fiendish shadow was besieging him in his metal cage. The Captain grimaced at his predicament. Konrad may avoid his shackled matrimony yet.

The Story Will Continue Every Friday.

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When Titans Fall panel 6
Wolfran the Knight Avenger series cover
When Titans Fall episode cover
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Wolfran the Knight Avenger

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Long before history, and its lies began Wolfran and his fellow Knights battle the dark gods and their minions in the far reaches of the universe. Follow the endeavors of the Knight Avenger as he persues the forces of darkness wherever they flee in his iron fisted mech, and with his plasma sword at his side.
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