“Ready...?” Before I got any further, the light from the tunnel vanished. There was no distant smashing of lights, it was just suddenly gone. Like something had stepped between me and it.
It stood upright on bird-like legs, chitinous scales rasping as it stepped into the circle. Light shimmered across a smooth carapace that squirmed under its glare, allowing me the first real look at the creature from the apartment.
It was almost certainly an insect of some sort. Gossamer wings were barely visible, sprouting from the back of a huge black thorax. As it moved I could make out a second pair of arms shimmering in the light. This lower pair were thinner and split into delicate fingers, obviously their equivalent of hands. The higher, more obvious pair could only be described as weapons: curved like a wicked pair of can openers, the creature was using them to shield its eyes from the harsh illumination. Said eyes were embedded in an ash-white head with carved ebony features; black opals that glimmered at me with familiarity and alien intelligence.
“You guys again?” I tried to keep the fear from my tone. “You forget the kicking we gave you earlier?”
It let out a quick report of short sharp hisses. It took me a moment before I realized it was laughing. Then it spoke.
“You’ve spilled Legion blood, Jack of Heroes.” Its lips never moved as it spoke. The serpentine tone had a buzzing quality and seemed to come from behind the creature, where its wings flickered. “Legion does not forgive. Legion does not forget.”
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