Xeranad: Darkness Beckons

Xeranad arrived at the Temple of the Akashka, the headquarters for the Order. Xeranad never fully agreed with their goals or plans, but acted according to their wishes regardless... he felt that he may obtain what he was searching for... his past.

Before him stood Gothmog Necrosia, a brittle old man who was also a master necromancer. While not the current head of the Order, he was among the founders when it was formed about two hundred years ago. He managed to survive this long by draining the life from those he encountered who were both young and beautiful.

Just another narcissist in Xeranad's eyes... and he HATED narcissists. Always acting like they are the greatest thing the world has ever seen, and that everyone should bow before them. Such behavior only sickened him to the point where he wanted to prjectile vomit in their faces, just to shut them up.

Instead, he was forced to follow the orders of an old man narcissist and a young man narcissist by turns. How Cypher managed to become a member of the Order was beyond him. He wanted to make his thoughts known, to unburden his soul from the pent up anger and disgust, but doing so was folly. Instead, he bowed and asked: "What dost thou bid, master Necrosia?"

"I hear that you have located the child that we seek... the living nexus. Her power is necessary to bring about our goals..." Gothmog spoke to Xeranad in a rasping voice. Xer secretly hoped that he would croak right there and save him from having to kill him himself in the near future.

"Yes, I have." Xeranad replied in a sardonic tone in his voice.

"She managed to best you in combat and now is with the sorcerer Nazara, who has agreed to teach her how to control her powers." Gothmog continued.

"We both know that as long as the seal on her remains intact, she is useless to us." Xeranad answered.

"How do you know of this?"

For once, Xeranad was at a loss. He had no previous knowledge of a seal upon the living nexus, which bound her powers for her safety and the safety of those around her... yet here has stated something that he had no idea was a problem. What was going on? "I just know, and as such, her true power remains sealed. This would be an excellent time to capture her... but tell me... who will you send for her retrieval?"

"Cypher Nullcero has been sent to obtain her. Do not worry. He will return with her within a few days... maybe two weeks at most." Gothmog answered.

"Yeah, like he'll succeed where I failed."

"Unlike you, Cypher never surrenders. He also has a better record than you when t comes to obtaining what we desire. Master Wagner will be pleased when Cypher returns, the living nexus bound and helpless. She will perform the Ritual, and this world will be cleansed of the unworthy..." Gothmog exclaimed. Xeranad scoffed beneath his white mask, but kept his thoughts to himself. "You may go now, Raven Lord. I shall send for you when your talents are again required."

Xeranad turned and walked off, and smiled beneath his mask. He couldn't have hoped for a better outcome. If Cypher succeeds, then he will visit her before the Ritual and see who she is, not what. And should he fail... Xeranad smiled... then he would be rid of that annoying narcissist forever.

---

Aria looked around the cavern that Plantagonox had called home. Her mouth opened wide at the vast size and natural beauty of her surroundings, the stalagmites and stalagtites moving close together like natural pillars, the cool underground lake sparkling like crystal, and the formations of the rocks becoming natural steps up to a small cliff... one perfect to view the entirety of the cave. Plantagonox pointed up there and smiled. "That... is where I sit and think. It is my thinking rock, when I am faced with a problem that show me no ready answers. It also is rather comfortable because of the moss that grows there... I think that is where you should rest for the night."

Aria stared at him, eyes wide, and hugged him, wrapping her arms around his thick, scaly neck. Plantagonox smiled. "Thank you... Plantagonox. You've treated me better than anyone has in my own village... I'm happy I met you. And I am happy to be here with you now... by your side."

The End

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