THE ANCIENT RIDER

This is something I just banged out real quick for fun. Maybe I’ll used it in one of my low-fantasy or supernatural writings.

The window flew open and the rain poured in. The wind was treacherous as it made the curtains dance. A strobe effect of lightning battered the night, unveiling eerie figures otherwise shrouded by darkness. In the distance, out beyond the mist of the falling rain in the midnight heat, she glimpsed the silhouette of a rider in black, dressed like an undertaker poised atop of large, dark stallion. The visitors were far away but she could hear the mare snort. Rain flowed in rivulets off the wide brim of the man’s fedora.

“Who are you?” she screamed against the wind.

The motionless man made no move. She knew it wasn’t storming before he showed up. He brought the thunder; he was the maestro of the maelstrom. From somewhere far beyond a realm where life or death no longer mattered, he had been waiting for an immeasurable time. As days and nights blended and years fell away into centuries, he had waited, patiently for the time to rise and take the world. Now, the Stormbringer was here. The Reaper, the Deacon of Darkness, Kingkiller, Angelmaker. Whatever other titles eternity had thought to give him, he was here.

Deep under the darkened overcoat awaited mighty wings. She knew them. She had seen them in her nightmares. While Lucifer was real, she had once believed the Devil was not. She thought the Devil was an invented entity for man to lay the responsibility of his own illicit behavior on. Now she knew she was wrong. The Devil–not the fallen angel, Lucifer, something much worse, the original force of evil throughout the entire universe–was real, and she was staring right at him.

The drapery of rain whipped around him, creating a gray aura that encircled him. His ring of protection, or destruction. The winds of Armageddon, blowing from his heart, drove the tempest onward.

She was caught in it, and from her window, looking down on the courtyard that had temporarily become the realm of the Night Lord, she called again, “What do you want?”

The eyes of the horse flared red. The torrents of the falling rain intensified and the wicked gale blew with such force that she was driven back. Bolts of lightning as big as pillars struck the ground and trees around them, igniting the world like great beacons of white fire.

The house shook beneath her as she struggled back to the window. Despite the fear that was working its way through her seizing body; she looked out the window once more and gasped. The horse was now in motion, whips of flame trailing its footsteps. The Creature on its back looked up, its eyes turning to a spiral of purple and blue lights snaking through an orb of pitch black, and lifted its arms. Wings began to shred through the coat as the visitor rose into the air. The last thing she saw before screaming herself into unconsciousness was the sinister, bloody grin of the white skull as the winged monster descended upon her.

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