*The story has been taken from third chapter of 'Durga Saptshati'. I have tried to translate and reinterpret the original sanskrit texts, to the best of my abilities. The brilliance is all Hers, the faults are all mine*
Mahishasura bellowed in anger. He raised his bloodshot eyes and looked all around the field. Arms lay twitching, countless severed heads and blown out eyes were staring at the sky. Some heads were muttering, others spewing blood on the sodden ground.
The sky itself has turned blood red, as if mirroring the emotions of the battle. Blood curling screams, raucous war cries and claps of thunder roared. His centre of attention however, were none of these.
She stood in the centre of the field, indistinguishable from the war around her. She WAS the war, unstoppable and ruthless. She battled hundreds at a time, her weapons raining down death upon all those unlucky enough to come near her.
"Once I win this war, She and the Gods shall pay for it dearly", he swore to himself, and he counted his losses.
Ciksura, his great general had been the only one who had manged to harm Her. She had slain him with her pike, the force of the attack blasting the general into a thousand pieces.
His blood and gore had not even settled to the ground, when that ferocious lion of Hers had pounced upon Camara. That had been a valiant battle, until the beast had soared high into the sky and slashed off Camara's head with his brutal claws.
Each of her weapons were deadly, but she was the deadliest of them all. Her arrows tore apart Durmukha, she beheaded Bidala with her sword. That trident of hers had claimed Mahamanu.
She had relentlessly poundedUddhata to death, with her club. If that was not enough, Karala had been torn to pieces by her mere hands and teeth
She was a dangerous, vicious, merciless and blood lusting enemy! Well, if war was what She wanted, Mahishasura will give her war!
* * *
Mahishasura transformed himself to his buffalo form. The great beast stood like a mountain, his horns gleaming with crusted blood. Each of his muscles bulged, his arteries pulsated, his nostrils puffed great bouts of air, his hooves shook the earth and his eyes spelled Death.
He charged, and the army of the Devi fell to pieces. his muzzle tossed soldiers in the air, his hooves crushed and pounded them. His sheer speed, his bellowing, his wheeling movements and his deadly breath. He was a machine of war, an army in himself.
And turned his attention to the other beast roaring in front of him. The very elements of nature seemed to be shivering with fear. The Earth gave way, under his terrible hooves. The great seas parted, by the flick of his tail and his horns tore apart the clouds high above!
As he advanced towards Her, he finally caught a close glimpse.
She was covered in blood, filth and gore. Each of her wepaons glimmered with the spoils of battle. Her eyes were bloodshot ,drunk and red. Her muscles were poised, her mouth smiling in happiness.
The great Asura could not control his wonder, even in moments of such rage. She had looked eternally beautiful when She had walked in. But now, in this insane maniac form, she surpassed beauty. This was her, in all her glorious splendour. No amount of 'sringaar' could have given her the aura that 'sanghaar' gave her!
The two titans collided, and the world waited with bated breath. He was brute force, She was contained dynamism. He was rage untamed, She was strength fortified.
They clashed and clashed again. As She bound the great buffalo with a noose, He was forced to take the form of a lion. Before he could pounce, his head had been slashed off with Her sword.
The man She fell with a thunder of arrows, the elephant's trunk was chopped off too. He was forced to return to his buffalo form, and he bellowed with anger!
The Devi's eyes burned red, She had had enough of this. She launched a hail of arrows at the mountains he had thrown at her . She raised her glass to her mouth and laughed,
"Roar, Roar! You fool! Once I finish this wine, the Devas shall roar in this place after I've slain you"
She leaped, twirled in the air and gracefully landed on the great asura! He was so taken aback, He did not have time to retreat.
He struggled under her foot, unable to comprehend the power of this woman. He was the great Asura, immune to all men and defeater of Devas! The more he roared, the more she pressed him down!
Frustated, he emerged as his human form. Raised his head from the neck of the great buffalo. His war cry rang with insanity. It was the final call of the Great Asura, his shock and shame at having been subjugated by a woman!
The Devi slashed off his head with a single swipe of her sword. The blood issued forth from His neck, bathing Her in an iridescent glow.
She stood still, clothes torn to pieces, hair disheveled and eyes glowing with naked bloodlust. She stood there with her Lion by the side, slayer of a million and wielder of deadly astras.
She stood there, and there was none as beautiful as She.