Horror on the Orient Express

Django's experience in the mountains

Meeting horror face to maw

After years of occasional and unpredictable lessons from Sihirbaz, I have been offered another glimpse into the power behind Gerçeklik. I wish I had not.

Sihirbaz appeared one morning at my hut and beckoned me towards the forest without a word. I followed, as I always do, hoping for something more than old stories. I thirst for knowledge like nazar and büyülemek but he offers little and what he does give me is infrequent.

We climbed a hill and entered a broad clearing of wild flowers. A goat was chewing on clover, tied to a small post in the center. A trench of foul smelling liquid encircled the goat and a roughly made table was nearby. Sihirbaz told me he had been preparing this for two days and two night. He was going to show me a great fena, a being from beyond the veil of reality. This was a lesson in caution as much as a way to show me what was possible.

We meditated for 4 hours then walked perhaps half of a league to a small waterfall and bathed in the pool. We returned to the clearing and he spoke words of caution and protection. I was given a copper amulet with a strange sigil. I suppose this was a ward of some sort?

It became black as eternity, as there was no moon. Sihirbaz placed an ancient leather-bound book on the table and began to recite more unknown words. I felt an incredible coldness and heat at the same time, my hackles stood on end, and my gut churned.

Suddenly, the air crackled and a mirage appeared in the center of the circle. A great black head and huge claws were followed by an enormous black, serpentine bulk held aloft by a single bat-like wing. It saw the goat and immediately began to consume it. Sihirbaz named it av korkunç şey and said we had summoned it to destroy it in the morning light.

The beast finished its meal and turned its eyes to Sihirbaz who held a hand aloft and commanded it to stay. It struggled to fly forward but stayed as if being held by an invisible hand. Sihirbaz seemed pained and blood dripped from his ears. The horror seemed about to settle when Sihirbaz screamed like I have never heard another human being scream before or since. He fell to the ground and its long tail shot out and wrapped around him.

A great claw came for me and cut a huge gash across my left side. I dragged myself to the edge of the forest as it came at me again. Once I passed the first tree, Sihirbaz used what little strength he had to shout strange, guttural words, nnn fahf nglui ng fahff llll hup mgvulgtnahor ph’ fahf shuggog. I felt power ripple through the amulet and a shimmer, like a mirage appeared near the trees. The av korkunç şey stopped short as if confronted by flame. It attempted to reach me twice more before giving up. It howled at Sihirbaz and bit off his head at the neck before flying into the sky. I lost consciousness .

I awoke late in the morning in pain and covered with seeping wounds. I barely made it back to my hut, applied a bandage and poultice and returned to sleep. Many days passed before I had the strength to find food. I’ve written this account soon after in case I succumb to my injuries.

Addendum: I have survived my injuries. I must know more about what I saw in the forest, so that it might never happen to another. At least I have the protection amulet, but I can’t recall the exact pronunciation of those words. It does nothing now. Perhaps it’s out of magic?



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