... I will break your heart, tear you to pieces and rip you apart...
-Night of the Hunter, 30 Seconds to Mars
During the Hellecken War, shapeshifting warlock Morgan Daubenmire was this monstrous and mysterious force that came out of nowhere, sided with no one, and was loathed by all. Countless were the times a footsore battalion dragged itself to a fort or bridge or cache to find structure, weapons, and food smouldering- and almost hidden in the smokey fire, a lazily grinning pair of eyes.
Murders, abductions, arson, pillaging, and general mayhem aside, there was one habit Daubenmire was perhaps hated for more than anything. After battles, when the fields were stinking with blood and drifting with haze, spotted with little fires and soldiers hunting for wounded amongst the bodies, sometimes the shapeshifter would appear. He would not be his cackling, prancing, mischievous self, witnesses would say. Always as a massive black dragon he would come, silent, deaf, moving like a wraith in the distance, and eat the corpses.
Except he wasn't, really, eating corpses. Just the fallen horses. Waste of good meat, you know. But that was the story that got around, and Morgan doesn't joke when he says all the darkest mythos around him was invented by other people faster than he could get around to it himself.
This painting doesn't actually have anything to do with that anecdote, but seeing dragon Morgan on such a bleak background reminded me of it. Probably this was how people imagined he wandered the fields, chuckling and licking his chops, instead of the silent hulk of misery he was when he made himself walk among the young men and women and remember why he was out there.
Four hour quickie. Trying to use less color.