They look like grim disco-people. If witnesses knew what a disco was.
The spore is basketball sized and round. It flexes slightly, tremors invisibly and frighteningly quick as micro-spurts of desperate growth run through. Like a cell dividing in a scope.
It's greeny-glass blue with big thick wine-bottle-bottom lenses making up the tessellated skin. The cell wall is transparent-opalescent in the light. Though why, no-one can tell. It eats the eyes in the skull so cannot see through those.
The spore comes down over your head like a diving helmet. You drown in toxic psychotropic goo. It eats the flesh in your head. Muscles, skin, lips and eyes. Dissolves much of the meat in the brain, but leaves the neuronal web. It picks you up. And makes you walk.
Looking at the skull that tops the staggering form, observing through the green-blue glass, you see teeth. A halo of them bobbing in the thick dissolve. Sometimes a jaw-bone joins them. Sometimes it slips, like a splinter that's ejected from the flesh. You see it sticking out, half-bare and yet to fall away. The teeth surround the empty skull, dancing in the white neuronal smoke. Your nerve-connections web released from flesh and spilling from the bone, but still hooked up. Expanding in the dusky oil.
So it staggers towards you and beats you to death. Then drags your body to some secret place and dumps it with the rest. Then watches and watches and watches while you rot.
The adults don't seem very interesting? But, someone has found a use for this spore. It has a talent for tongues.
If you force a smaller spore over the head of a pet. Say a dog. Something low and controllable. It can be harnessed and trained. The spore will eat the flesh but the mix of unknown soup and neuronal-skeletal-web grows babel-skills. It can understand any spoken language. However. It cannot speak. It can only sign with the limbs the original animal had. And apes have proven too difficult to control.
A spore on an adult humonoid body is a violent killer, attacking everything it can, dragging the bodies to secret places.
Someone found a different way. They used a child. Around the age of eight is best. You'll need the parents consent. Kill the child by drowning in the spore. As the creature eats, have the mother whisper and hold. She can persuade the spore not to eat the eyes. If the child truly loved its parents the resulting spore-slave-zombie-thing will carry vestigial loyalties in the spinal cord. It can hear and it can move. It will have eyes to read. And it can sign its reading. The spore-child can read any language. It can crack any cypher and code.
Not even the darkest soul has dreamed the truth. The spore-child lies. It seeks the death of nations. Every word is tilted, imperceptibly wrong. The speaking of the spore breeds war. Slowly seeded and tended over time. The translations of the spore-child twist the minds inside the heads of state. They breed chaos, violence and fear. The aim is death.
All the spores want is an endless carrion-warren under the earth. A boundless maze of rotting flesh where every living thing is muck. They are seeds after all. That's what a spore is, a seed-child. The fungus they were made to grow needs dying things to live. That's why the stupid 'adult' spores attack. That's why the kinder-spores exist. To become valuable. To be moved around. To be kept safe. To produce death. It is a long plan. But what is time to a myconid mind?
A fire without flame, a flame without heat. The Ingneous Wrath has burst its bonds. It is skipping on the rock that dents under its legs.
Elementals find it hard to leave. Birthed from cosmic planes, their bones and flesh arranged by delicate compact, if they stay too long they die. A beast of fire won't breach the cold. They freeze in air conditioned rooms. The Wrath found a way.
It lives a kind of endless mirror life that never gives it rest. The Wrath walks on the walls of rock. Gravity has no relevant reference here. The wrath sticks to the walls. Or ceilings. So long as they are natural rock. It does not fall. The stone dimples like a dragonfly's footprint on a pond. Beneath the Wrath is it's reflection, holding it in place. They used to be one thing.
One form of the Igneous wrath is beetle-like. Black, solid flameless as cold coal but burning hot. It stamps and shuffles forward like an awkward bull. A smouldering scarab-predator always on the verge of explosive boiling flight. Hot enough to burn you within feet. Crawling in a compressed mirage-heat-haze. Never never bursting into flame.
The other form, the sometime-rock-reflection is a phoenix-fly. A dragonfly wreathed in fifty-colour shades of fire. Iron-cold rust red fire that never burns. The fire is chill. It lights like twenty burning torches but holds not one breath of heat. It can enfold you and eat the air in your lungs. It can carbonise your clothes and consume your flesh. But it cannot burn as burnings understood.
The two things race together through the caves. As one dives down into the rock the other surges up to take its place. And so they run, endlessly figure-eighting on a regular relative plane. The beetle burrows down into the stone, the dragonfly escapes. And visa-versa. They can never be in the same plane at the same time. This was the arrangement they made. By splitting itself in two the Wrath escapes the fate of failed elementals, cooling and dying in the material world. It can run forever while there is rock to support its division.
But it has to run. It can never stop moving. It is escaping it's own impossibility and if it stops, the mealy laws of time and space catch up. The bailiffs of physics attack.
It is also ridiculously hungry and pissed-off.