A time to focus on the task ahead.
NEW FOREST PORTAL, ENGLAND.
When the group finally reached the outside world, it was already dark. In the presence of the nearly full moon, Davina could sense her Goyle gaining power. It suddenly made perfect sense why Malchus had been so specific about having moonstone Goyles. He must have anticipated that battle would take place during the full moon.
Davina waited for her eyes to adjust to the darkness and instantly noticed numerous boulders littered the forest. Was it an ambush? Did the Grotes roll up into stones as well or was it an exclusively Goyle trait? When Wanda transformed and trotted over, she realised she was safe.
‘It’s so wonderful to see you all… Do you have any news?’ Davina asked.
‘The Grotes are not growing anymore, although the Chimera has already accumulated a vast army,’ said Wanda looking grave.
‘Does she have any idea what’s about to happen?’
Wanda shook her head. ‘Davina you should know that there has been word amongst the humans that the cities are falling at an alarming rate. They are broadcasting it over the radio waves because all the television stations have been destroyed.’
‘They’re taking out their communications,’ Davina glanced at Malchus, who seemed strangely distant. ‘Malchus?’
‘I fear we may be too late Davina,’ he said.
Davina shook her head, ‘Let her believe she has won and then we can use her arrogance against her!’
Malchus nodded, he admired his daughter’s determination in the face of adversity.
‘I’m impressed by your perseverance,’ said Thalia approaching Davina on her Lizer.
‘I won’t stop until this is over. Otherwise it will continue until the humans are completely destroyed,’ Davina replied.
Davina called the Goyle leaders in close and whispered her orders to both Solomon and Wanda. They nodded their approval. A lone figure bounded down the rocks in Davina’s direction. Her instant reaction was to be defensive but she was wrong. Clio purred when she reached the group. Davina reached out but Clio flinched. She had a scorch-mark on her shoulder. ‘Davina you did well in the desert, I didn’t think you had it in you,’ said Clio in a thick purr-like tone.
‘Thank you – I think,’ said Davina studying Clio. Why was she always alone?
Clio padded forwards, sensing Davina’s unease. ‘Davina, my Goyles are hidden, we watch and then we attack. You tell me your orders and we will follow them precisely whilst remaining elusive.’
Davina glanced at Malchus, who nodded his approval. She whispered her orders into Clio’s ear.
‘That is very wise… although when you see the extensive devastation caused by the Grotes a few things may well change,’ said Clio with a nod.
In Davina’s opinion it was better to have a plan that changed rather than no plan at all. In the meantime, the Goyle leaders passed her orders to their Goyles. Each Goyle nodded, knowing their role was paramount within the structure of the plan.
‘I think it’s time we took action, follow me,’ said Davina pushing Rochelle, her Lizergoyle, into a trot and then bounded up into the air. The name Rochelle meant from the small rock.
While Rochelle was getting used to her wings; Davina noticed she seemed to be enjoying the sensation of flight. She had only a short flight to reach Salisbury, the nearest city under attack. Davina glanced back, Ghost, as usual, was not having the best time. ‘Ghost you control your Goyle, it does not control you! When you are definite, it will be definite. It can sense your fear.’
‘Davina you know I don’t like heights and this is ridiculous they haven’t even flown before have they?’ he said, his voice cracking.
‘Wimp!’ said Johnny hurtling past with his hands behind his head.
‘I’ll give you wimp you Goyle-grunt,’ said Ghost pushing his Goyle to go faster.
Johnny smirked, ‘Goyle grunt? More than four eyes!’
Ghost cleared the treetops followed by the rest of the group. He was just about to respond but was silenced. There was definitely nothing to smile about. Before him was complete and utter devastation.
‘Blimey…!’ muttered Ghost under his breath.
There was a silence for a short time while everyone observed the destruction.
‘I didn’t realise it was going to be so destroyed,’ said Johnny with a sigh. ‘It’s sheer devastation.’
‘That’s what’s happening all over the world. Every major city looks the same,’ said Thalia as she drew parallel with them.
Johnny and Ghost glanced at each other.
‘What’s keeping you?’ asked Davina as she swooped back round.
‘I think that might be what’s keeping us,’ said Ghost gesturing at the city.
‘If it looks like that now imagine what the world will look like in a few days!’ said Davina. ‘Now you both need to focus. Ghost you need to use your eyes to watch all angles and inform us of attacking Grotes. You must not get distracted. You need to be determined and intend to survive, but it will be more difficult if you give up before we start.’
Ghost and Johnny glanced at each other, she was right but that didn’t mean they had to like what she said.
‘So what are you waiting for?’ Davina tapped the Shamaventus and sent thousands of small globules of blue light in all directions. They created a trail that swirled into the forest.
‘What did you do that for?’ called Ghost.
‘It is the sign for the Goyles to wake up and mount the attack.’
Ghost peered down at the forest; the globule’s presence set the trees moving. Stones formed into animal shapes and launched into the air. Ghost held onto his Lizergoyle with all his strength; thousands upon thousands of Goyles flew into the air like startled bats. Once in the air, the Goyles lined up in triangular formations and prepared to attack.
Ghost watched the Goyles swoop the Grotes, who had grown weary from dropping their lava bombs. Without the lava, the Grotes had no ammunition to pelt the Goyles. Davina sat at the front of the group and watched the first Goyle attack take place. The first few Grotes fell silently to the city. The other Grotes noticed something was up. As soon as things began to fall apart Davina tapped the Shamaventus and chanted. With the Rebis egg close by, she had unlimited power. She intended to create a shield to cover every city. Every lava bomb dropped would rebound back to each Grote who had dropped it. They would get back what they had given. Davina pointed the Shamaventus at the city and manifested the force field.
‘Remember to make it specific. And make sure the bombs rebound and hit the Grotes in the throat,’ said Thalia taking up position beside her.
‘You’ll need the Rebis egg energy close by. Your connection will stop you being drained by all this manifestation,’ said Malchus as he drew up on the other side of Davina and placed his hand on her shoulder.
She continued chanting and nodded in agreement. Vast force fields grew from the earth and contained the cities. Davina sighed, she felt ill. She closed her eyes and made a subtle call which was whisked to the Goyles by the wind. The Goyles withdrew, waiting for the next batch of Grotes to drop the lava bombs. The Goyles returned to the nearby forest and awaited their next commands.
Davina watched the air fill with lava-clad Grotes. In formation the git of Grotes flew towards the city of Salisbury; their purpose firmly set on destruction. Davina chewed her lip, would the field be strong enough? How would the remaining humans view the random force field? She tapped the Shamaventus and manifested an image of what the inhabitants of the city could see above them. The force field resembled the Aurora borealis, a magnetised, particle field that undulated over the whole city. It resembled a giant dome of light.
In the city, people scurried in all directions. Everyone was seeking safety or a place to hide. After a short while some of the fleeing humans, scanned the sky for the next bombing and noticed something above them. Some even paused staring with fascination at the translucent glow. Numerous humans assumed it was something else intending to kill them so dived for shelter.
‘They really didn’t notice that last battle did they?’ said Davina with a frown.
‘They will see what they choose to see,’ responded Thalia.
Gradually people stopped running and stared at the sight above them. Another wave of lava bombs were on their way. From beyond the force field, the inhabitants of the city stood motionless watching the glow of the next lava bombs nearing them. There was no escape! They sheltered as best they could and watched the scene develop.
Davina watched impatiently, was the force field going to be strong enough? There was a heavy silence amongst her group as they watched the Grotes flying silently towards the city. Each Grote followed its pre-programmed orders, unaware of what was about to happen.
The first Grotes circled the city waiting for the others to join them. They waited until the full battalion had gathered in their thousands. When all the Grotes were ready, they dropped their molten stones simultaneously and a cluster of burning fury descended upon the city.
‘Great Goyle I hope this works! Come on let it work, let it work!’ she muttered as she fidgeted.
The people of the city helplessly gazed up at the sky. They were going to die.
Davina instinctively wanted to close her eyes. It felt like the lava took forever to fall. Trails of sparks and flames created a red haze as each lava bomb gathered momentum. The Grotes cackled and hovered expectantly. There was an air of expectancy and then silence.
Bang, bang, bang, boing! Was the strange sound made by the hundreds of lava bombs when they collided with the shield. A second later the burning lumps rebounded back towards the Grotes. For a second the disturbed monsters were transfixed by the oddity of the sight before them. Each Grote got back what it had thrown at the city. Each received a blow to the throat which ended its short-lived existence. Davina closed her eyes; thousands of lava bombs collided with their carriers. Some tried to dodge but the lava pursued them until it hit its target. As soon as the Grotes were hit, they plummeted and smashed onto the force field.
The humans stared up in awe; above them, a thin layer of something had protected them from the lava bombs. It also separated the cities from the fallen bodies of demons attacking them. Some of the humans emerged from their shelters to gaze at the sight. Most were completely confused. Others humans stayed back just in case, not trusting what was happening. Was it a decoy? The city around them was on fire, but something out of their comprehension was taking place.
The next wave of Grotes flew silently like stealth fighters to their targets. They didn’t anticipate anything out of the ordinary so continued to drop their lava bombs in the same routine. Again the lava bombs rebounded catching the Grotes completely off-guard. As with the others, their lifeless, stone bodies tumbled towards the field and shattered on impact. A wall of rubble built up between the city and the sky. When the conflict was over, Davina was going to have to remember to clear the cities and dissolve the force field.
Davina watched the sorry sight and sighed heavy heartedly.
Malchus noticed Davina was upset so circled and swooped back over. ‘A brilliant idea my child.’
‘But I have killed thousands of Grotes. They were just acting on orders. It could very well have been the Goyles.’
‘It wasn’t though was it?’ said Ghost.
Glancing at her many warriors, Davina took a deep breath; they were all still intact. None of her Goyles had been killed, but there had been a few injuries. In Davina’s mind the attack was too easy, was she being lulled into a false sense of security? Davina had witnessed what the Chimera could do, if the Chimera was anything like her, she would be waiting, drawing Davina closer. She would allow her to believe she was winning.
The next battalion of Grotes suffered the same painful death; Davina shook her head. She was going to have to go to the tower on the edge of the wastelands. Davina tapped the Shamaventus to reveal a translucent image: the wastelands and moors harboured millions of Grotes. They were waiting for her. Davina sucked her lower lip; had the Chimera anticipated Davina’s actions? Something wasn’t right about the whole thing… What was she missing?’