God Forge: Forge of the Mind (book 1) [draft 2]

Component 16 - The Cold Truth

Component 16: The Cold Truth

Buster watched the great ice dragon destroy the wall to the adjacent room. If he had been a coward he would have taken that moment to flee the caves and let things lie. But, unfortunately the dwarf was not a coward at all. He was brave, and in his own mind, a ‘blasted idiot’.

“Come on ya damn machine!” Buster shouted as he swung his Hellsmasher hammer down to crush the ice holding Angon, “Don’t ye make me do this all on me own!”

A large chunk of ice broke off—and had the ice been of the natural kind, it would have all shattered—but no, this was the magic ice of a dragon.

Buster brought his hammer back again, and smashed away, breaking off another large piece—but not large enough.

Inside the ice, Angon stared down at the strange short man. He was trying so desperately to free him, and they didn’t even know each other. Despite being unable to feel things other than pressure, the magical cold seeped into the Forge’s inner workings, and he felt himself shivering. It was a new sensation, and one he did not like.

Angon struggled from within his icy prison. He pushed out with all his might, and the ice holding his arms to his chest began to crack, but he needed more strength. He just wasn’t strong enough to shatter his frozen status. The Forge was relying entirely on the small man to save his newfound life.

From the next cavern over the ice dragon roared and thrashed around. Buster took a moment to glance in that direction—he saw only the crystalline dust swirling around as the ceiling began to come down. He knew he needed to get Angon free, and that action alone would be all of their only hope.

“C’mon ye blasted thing!” Buster snapped, breaking away another chunk of ice.

He knew the method he used was taking far too long. He needed to get the machine’s arms free. There was only one way to do that—strike higher.

Buster brought back the Hellsmasher and shook his head.

“I be sorry if this kills ye.” Buster whispered, aiming Hellsmasher right at Angon’s crossed arms, “But it be our only bet.”


Lavina screeched as the ice dragon broke into their chamber, and huge shards of ice flew straight for her head. She ducked, and Gavin beside her did the same.

“We need to climb!” Lavina said, starting for the steep incline that they had fallen down.

“But there’s nowhere to go out there but the cliffs!” Gavin shouted, finally daring to nock an arrow.

The Sol Elf fired the missile at the dragon, and it struck just under the mighty creature’s eye. The dragon didn’t even seem to notice, despite the arrow sticking out from under its facial scales.

“Well we’re up to our necks in dragon dung…” Gavin muttered.

“Actually…” Lavina said, “Dragon’s defecate diamonds—well it varies on species actually, but—”

“Not the time!” Gavin shouted as the dragon reared back its head and that same blue-ish energy began to form around its mouth.

He grabbed Lavina’s arm and they ran toward the dragon.

“What’re you doing?” the half-elf girl cried.

There was no time to explain. They needed to get underneath the great beast or they would become dragon dung diamonds.

The sol elf kicked his legs out and slid, pulling Lavina along behind him. The dragon breathed its powerful ice behind them, but it could not follow underneath. The elves continued their slide, but they had not gained enough momentum. They came to a stop just underneath its midsection.

“Oh fetter!” Gavin snapped.

There wasn’t enough room to stand, and they would have to crawl out. But if the dragon decided to lay down they would be crushed for sure.

“This way!” Gavin cried, and started forward on his hands and knees, trying to get to the back end of the dragon.

He made his way along, but when he glanced back to see if Lavina was behind him, he found her kneeling in the same spot where they stopped. She had her hands on the underbelly of the dragon and was chanting something.

“I hate spellcasters…” Gavin said, shaking his head, fear filling him that he had just failed Lavina’s father, Ern-Marcuso.

Gavin had risked his life for Lavina before, and this time was no different. He started to crawl forward, but whatever his companion had been doing, she was done. Lavina stopped chanting and was now crawling as fast as she could toward the grateful elf.

He held thrust out his hand and Lavina smiled, crawling forward. But then the dragon realized its prey was no longer before it, and had made a quick escape. The dragon stomped its front legs, and began to turn, looking in both directions.

Gavin mouthed the words, “Come on!” in hopes that he could make the girl move faster. She came within feet of the Sol Elf, then mere inches, but then the dragon spun around and Lavina screamed. In the flash of moving limbs, Gavin lost sight of her.

“Lavina!” The Elf cried in horror.

Before he could begin to search for her again, he felt the cold breath of the ice dragon breathing down his neck.


With the powerful force of a Ragnadone, the strongest animal on the face of Anhsook, Buster Ironheart swung his hammer.

Angon winced, preparing himself for certain doom.

The Hellsmasher connected with the sound of an explosion. Ice shattered and was sent flying, and Angon felt his whole body lift from its prison. But he didn’t stop, he flew back into the throne of Sheeva and that didn’t stop him either. The throne snapped in half, and Angon smashed hard into the wall beyond. He fell to his knees, his eyes closed.

“Angon!” Buster shouted, “Don’t tell me I hit ye too hard!”

The blue-beard ran up the stairs and past the throne of Sheeva, and to the seemingly dead machine. But a machine could not be dead. It only needed fixing. And anything could be fixed with the right amount of force.

Buster nodded, and brought back his fist.

“This is going to hurt me a hell of a lot more than it’s gonna hurt you.” He muttered, and swung.

The force was less than that of a Ragnadone, but it was strong because he had bones that were rock hard. The strike his Angon square in his face, and his head snapped back against the ice wall.

“Owww!” Angon cried out, as his eyes flew open, “Why did you hit me—twice?”

“Ye durned fool!” Buster snapped, “I had to free ye from the ice ye got yerself stuck in…. then I had to wake you up.”

“I’m sure there’re nicer ways…” Angon rubbed his face, realizing he had felt an actual pain instead of pressure, which caught him as curious.

“Well we don’t have time to be all landy-dandy.” Buster snapped, “Ye friends are in the other chamber fighting the damned ice dragon. We have to help ’em if any of us want to live.”

That was all Buster had needed to say—in fact he could have said Lavina and Dragon and Angon would have been up quicker. Regardless, Angon leaped to his feet and started toward the dragon. Buster shook his head.

“The fool doesn’t even have a weapon.” Buster muttered as he too ran towards the impossible-to-win battle.”


Gavin had never been so terrified—not even when he fought the undead armies of the Blood Tomb in the War of the Ten. The hair on the back of his thin neck was standing on end, and frosting over at the same time. He knew the dragon was mere inches from him, and ready to snap him up and make him dinner. But he also knew he had to move.

It all happened in an instant. Gavin tried to leap forward to crawl under the dragon again, but he wasn’t quick enough. The dragon reached down and snapped at the Elf. He was fully engulfed by the mouth of the gigantic beast, and everything went dark. Gavin knew his life was at its end, for as soon as the mouth closed, thousands of razor-sharp teeth would shred him into bits.

“Infareno Boom!” Lavina shouted at the top of her lungs.

With the sound of a cannon, the dragon lifted up into the air, and flames rolled out from underneath its belly. Gavin was only barely able to scramble behind a stalagmite in time.

The blazing hot pillar of fire had lifted the dragon up towards the ceiling. When the flames vanished, the dragon hung in mid-air for a moment, then crashed back down, slamming its head to the ground. Gavin quickly got to his feet and ran several yards back. He stared at the dragon, whose eyes were closed. Was it dead? Had Lavina really cast such a powerful spell as to kill something so great? If so he would have to reevaluate his belief in her spell casting abilities.

“Lavina?” Gavin cried out, just as the Forge ran up to him.

“Where is she?” Angon asked, looking around in desperation.

“I don’t know.” Gavin answered, and called her name again, but got no answer.

The dwarf caught up to the pair just then, gripping his hammer so tight his knuckles were white.

“Aye, ye killed the beast before I could even get here?” he asked, “Where be the fun in that?”

“Lavina!” Angon cried, “Are you alright? Say something!”

“I’m… here.” Came Lavina’s words.

Despite being a dexterous elf, Gavin was not the first to rush for the weak-sounding girl. Angon charged across the icy cave and leaped the dragon’s huge neck, landing out of site from the others.

Angon saw her right away—she was trapped under the dragon’s front leg. Her head and shoulders were sticking out, but she was entirely pinned down.

“Hold on!” Angon said, rushing to the fallen half-elf, “I’ll get you out.”

“Th-thank you, Angon.” She whispered, “It’s hard to breathe.”

“Don’t speak.” The Forge told her as he wedged his fingers under the massive, muscled leg and began to lift with all of his might.

The gears inside of Angon ran at full speed, they tried to coil his muscles to give him the strength he needed, but even then, the Forge was unable to lift the beast’s limb more than a few inches off the ground.

“Fetter!” Angon shouted, as Gavin hopped the dragon’s neck, and Buster was climbing up and sliding down the other side.

“We have to work together.” Gavin said, rushing to the opposite side of Lavina, “Dwarf, hurry it up!”

“Me name’s Buster!” The short blue-beard snapped.

He dropped his hammer and rushed to lift the dragon’s leg just off the girl.

“Together, as one.” Gavin said.

“Right.” “Aye.”

“Now!” Gavin cried, and the three strong warriors all began to lift.

The leg came up and they easily lifted it over their heads. Angon began to laugh with joy as Lavina crawled away out from under the dragon. She stumbled forward, coughed and wheezed, and tried to catch her breath.

“Oh Fetter.” Gavin spit out.

Angon still held the leg above his head, as Buster and Gavin backed away. The Forge found it strange that he was able to lift the beast on his own, when moments before he couldn’t move it an inch. But the roar of the dragon cleared everything up.

“Cover me, Elf!” Buster grunted as he charged towards the Dragon’s head.

But as the dwarf got near, the dragon lifted its neck and went out of reach. A clawed arm struck Buster in the chest and sent him tumbling back, crashing into Angon, and continuing on into Gavin.

As the three untangled their limbs, Lavina screeched in terror and began rapidly casting her firebolt spell.

“Firebolt! Firebolt! Firebolt!” she shouted, but each of the flame rays barely caused a tiny puff of smoke to arise from the dragon’s scales.

Lavina ducked under the snapping jaws of the enemy and skidded across the cavern on her bare feet, which she could barely feel the floor was so cold.

She skidded into a large rock and pushed herself off of it, just as the dragon turned and snapped its head down again. The rock exploded behind her as the beast plowed through it.

The girl aimed her metal rod at the dragon and searched her mind for a spell—anything offensive would do—anything to hurt the dragon more. But she gave up and tried to cast another firebolt. A spark came from her rod, but that was it—no ray of flame. She was out of magic power for the day.

The dragon turned to look down at her and snapped its jaws in the air, and dove for the girl.

From behind the dragon, Angon couldn’t see what was happening. But he heard Lavina scream in terror, and that was all the motivation he needed. He looked around for a weapon and spotted Hellsmasher sitting on the ground next to Buster—it would work perfectly.

Angon snatched up Hellsmasher and ran towards the tail of the dragon. The giant beast was unaware of the living weapon running up its back.

The Forge jumped from each ridge of the creature’s spine, and finally made it to its neck. The dragon realized at the last second as Angon launched himself into the air, bringing the hammer back over his head. With a great roar he brought the hammer down onto the top of the monster’s skull. With a great carack the skull of the beast shattered. The dragon whipped its head around, trying to make sense of what was happening—why it was losing its vision and ability to feel or think. Only thrice seconds later did the beast finally understand it was dying—no, in fact it was dead.

The mighty Forge and the dragon collapsed to the ground at the same moment. The great hammer, Hellsmasher was glowing a fiery red.

From across the cavern Buster was climbing over the dead dragon’s leg, and stared in awe. He had never seen his weapon glow red before—it had always been blue, with the power of Sheeva. But now it held a different power source, and since all of the goodly gods were gone, where did that power come from?

Angon dropped the hammer and approached Lavina was staring up with huge, wide eyes.

“Are you…are you alright?” He asked, staggering about as if he was about to pass out, for in fact he was—because he spent so much energy, energy he didn’t even knew he had.

“I’m fine…” Lavina said, “Thank you.”

When the Forge heard that he knew it was okay to let go of consciousness. Angon fell to his knees, and then slammed into the floor. Lavina cried out his name, but it sounded so far away—just like the beating of the drum. Where was that beating coming from? He didn’t know—all he knew then was the sweet embrace of the unconscious.

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