Chapter 23

In the depths of the Tower, Immaru cobbled together a prototype torso for his monster with patchwork remnants of deceased Headless Ones, fragments of pumpkin stolen while tagging along with the Guardian. Missing sections were filled in: the left arm of a deceased Ogre; the right, ripped from a freshly made Thrall. Immaru worked well into the night, wiring and welding and seaming and cutting.

Finally, it was ready.

Immaru sent a current flowing through the wires and ran siphoned Ether into his creation. The chest began to swell and heave, as if it were breathing. The eyes glowed bright blue and Ether poured from its ragged mouth. The monster torso pulled itself upright and dragged itself, a trail of seeds and fibrous orange flesh left behind along the table. The Headless One set its gaze upon its maker.

And then, it grabbed him.

The monster's Ogre arm gripped Immaru's shell with all its strength and pulled him toward its mouth as Ether vapor rolled over the Ghost's eye. Without warning, the head cracked at the seams. It split apart, splattering across the floor, the torso slumped lifeless against the table.