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Nightglory (3rd Edition)
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Writer Mathew Babaoye
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
1967 Reads

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Nightglory (3rd Edition)
A - A - A
The Answer
Mathew Babaoye
Apr 16, 2016
8 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!cMPlAQrFQcX7SCM3rDIMposted on PENANA

Illuminated eerie-green by the wavering light from witchfyre torches still burning along its dark, subtly crystalline walls, Caer Nocht's Feasting Hall was empty save for a Queen, a cage, and a cup.copyright protection101PENANAP1xySa0bGm

Do as I have asked and you will not face it alone.copyright protection101PENANAkS99eKZFpQ

Queen Goldenslaughter was sloshing wine by circular motion of her goblet while staring away from the faintly glowing silver cage nearby, upon the tabletop. “I am not alone,” she finally declared, then drained the goblet in one long swallow…copyright protection101PENANASnYL0LOsox

A distant scuff.copyright protection101PENANAedzMMrXMDD

Turning slowly towards the central aisle, she forced her mouth to carefully form syllables into: “my goblet needs filling.”copyright protection101PENANA9Xwj7K37qt

But the old, hard-bitten gold carpet was empty…copyright protection101PENANAXjRW4RHTj5

No answer.copyright protection101PENANAryj0l6riT5

“Mmm.”copyright protection101PENANAV22rl9cphD

You seem alone to me.copyright protection101PENANASfWJb1BSVU

Goldenslaughter blinked. “I am NOT alone.” Her eyes wandered over to a nearby flagon still waiting. “Wine is ever faithful.”copyright protection101PENANAYmtimOoO6h

It is not wine.copyright protection101PENANAT2kVuG5H5n

Frowning, she upended the flagon…copyright protection101PENANAkYChHNiiGe

Empty.copyright protection101PENANAdFAHYWwnLD

“Wretch!”copyright protection101PENANAFEGZAaGGSM

Feasal chose this moment to enter the Feasting Hall. Wearing his normal purple and black livery of service, her ancient head servant nimbly dodged the flying flagon, which shattered on the subtly crystalline dark floor behind him, then strode down the old, hard-bitten gold carpet before finally stopping at the base of the Dais to kneel, with his head bowed. “Queen of Night.”copyright protection101PENANA3dKFustNL9

Goldenslaughter peered down at him. “Yes?”copyright protection101PENANA1ZPCGNycak

The stubborn gnome glared up at her. “You are in no fine state to tend your Queenly duties. Especially with guests…”copyright protection101PENANAPPYwOzGvfz

Goldenslaughter arched one of her dark eyebrows, and waggled her empty goblet at him. “A fine time for wine...”copyright protection101PENANAhiM1Ygtr3e

Ignoring this, Feasal stood up. “I have done the best I could in your previous… absence. But have you forgotten so soon? It is time for our new weekly accounts meeting.”copyright protection101PENANAB5dqHUdg7o

“It is not…” A brief hesitation. “Opportune,” she finished firmly, then shooed him away. “Write me up a list. Elsewhere. For I am occupied.”copyright protection101PENANAAXdzt28axn

Feasal grumbled, but turned and strode back down the old, hard-bitten gold carpet to head back into a dark passage…copyright protection101PENANAJOGvQFMk6Q

Gone.copyright protection101PENANAzIVM9CHmTO

She blew out a breath…copyright protection101PENANAKtLY3f0bpy

Alone. Again. Always.copyright protection101PENANAz8mfDdUqx1

Unless…copyright protection101PENANAg6KbTTOAfI

Queen Goldenslaughter turned slowly back again, her attention drifting across the empty Feasting Hall tables until she was staring across the high table upon the faintly glowing cage. She absently twisted the Ring upon her finger, around and around…copyright protection101PENANAp0cbYfqZqP

copyright protection101PENANAxZYUfC792F

She was surrounded by enemies: friends turned foes shouting curses, foes turned murderous screaming violence, strangers, and behind them all burned light…copyright protection101PENANAbiLVtEOif4

The Daybringer, rising.copyright protection101PENANA0F5cQ4rg3S

She reached for her Power…copyright protection101PENANA6BR4v7GDgI

Gone! And her Title, with it.copyright protection101PENANAis13ovIcNY

“I will show you!” she raged. “I will cast you all down and grind you to dust! To nothing! Until you are only a memory of the dead!copyright protection101PENANAgODm1tqtKt

The hateful circle closed around her, leering as they came into further focus: her own forces, the Lady, the Slythy, and others long dead but achingly familiar even after all this time, including…copyright protection101PENANAlR5dVAkCdB

Her living Champion: the Barbarian Knight.copyright protection101PENANAlv3mzrRhEF

She screamed defiance as they swarmed over her…copyright protection101PENANAgVtThvnHY7

Awaken.copyright protection101PENANAbjZgxURRx4

Goldenslaughter opened her eyes…copyright protection101PENANAsSAwf9Y6rD

… then sat bolt upright, her chest heaving, in her dark, canopied bed within her dark, palatial bedroom atop the Great Keep of Caer Nocht. She was safe, secure…copyright protection101PENANAMHygBPLYxJ

And still possessed of Power?copyright protection101PENANA6J350A0Rrx

Why not?copyright protection101PENANAWUpxrEGqL8

The dark immortal one reached out her insubstantial hand, her monolithic Will bidding ensorcelled shadows beneath her black nightgown to twine from the sleeve out across her bonewhite skin, before imbuing them with enough Power to shade into corporeal, living darkness spiraling through the air (like a black tentacle) to grasp the cup upon her bedside table and return it to her. I have a thirst. She took a long gulp, then dropped the empty cup among the tangled sheets while squirming over to the side of the bed. Now I must see it again with my eyes. Swinging her legs over the side, she stood and then walked across rich throw rugs, passing by silken screens shielding curios, including the faintly glowing silver cage upon a stool, until finally throwing back open her shuttered double-doors…copyright protection101PENANA3xPBOqrzpZ

… to emerge back out onto her sumptuous balcony, beneath the crescent moon hanging high up in starry sky. The dark forest vale was spread beyond, all surrounded by distant encircling mountains whose upper slopes were luminous with low aurora. Well. All seems well. She inhaled the cool night air deeply, and exhaled.copyright protection101PENANAjvJmAJWABo

I warned you: augury is not the answer.copyright protection101PENANA8yjy5LcLbY

“You are right this time. I am done with sleep, and Dreaming,” she whispered, then raised her clenched fist high before using her monolithic Will to funnel massive Power into the living darkness surging up her bonewhite arm towards the suddenly glowing Ring which flared briefly bright before the surging darkness enveloped it, shading pure dark, and gradually even deeper, and truer, to pure black now BURNING with the perfect chill of the Void.copyright protection101PENANAUewKPkbhTA

A feeling of utter shock. How?!copyright protection101PENANAgc5ZzGJwhk

The dark immortal one responded only with a low moan of pain between her clenched teeth. It is devilish-difficult to maintain this new application of my dark Power long enough to fully cleanse the forged Ring their stolen Essences. Ohhh. Such pain to cleanse the source of my nightmare. Once satisfied all was well, she then let go her hold upon the Void, which allowed her arm to shade back to pure dark, darkness, and finally shadow dying away, under the shining moonlight, until her arm returned back to bonewhite skin. Always effort, but at least it was new. She exhaled raggedly, brought her bonewhite hand to her bonewhite face and sniffed the cleansed Tool before finally just holding it up against the shining crescent moon…copyright protection101PENANAUpSeXXZaJa

The Ring looked different.copyright protection101PENANA9EoFoe0zvU

Well, the deed is done. Goldenslaughteer sighed, turned, and returned into her palatial bedroom gently softened by moonlight now shining in through the still open balcony doors. Whatever. Eventually ploping back down onto the bed, she left her tired slender body splayed across the tangled folds of luxurious covers…copyright protection101PENANA9M6fLGWucd

Stillness.copyright protection101PENANAP7CIlAFkLp

Her eyes began closing–copyright protection101PENANAvU3Uzr8z1E

The Faerie Queen was right to caution you.copyright protection101PENANAtaqAqchmHt

Her eyes screwed firmly shut. “Enough.”copyright protection101PENANAzwAceWNUhy

A feeling of resentment.copyright protection101PENANAkMsnG1PPBQ

Tch. You must be better with it. Goldenslaughter groaned, then turned her head and gazed towards a set of silken screens edged by the faintest glow from the hidden cage. “I… sorry. I am sorry. And not myself.”copyright protection101PENANAt51TGr6XNN

You are always yourself, even when you refuse to admit it.copyright protection101PENANAqmk1zyYmtf

Wriggling under the covers now, she then peeped out with her sly eyes. “Tell me a story.”copyright protection101PENANAUN2mbJo0y0

A bedtime story?copyright protection101PENANAQ15RVMi2J6

“An interesting story,” she warned.copyright protection101PENANAPat9c2Iapc

Mm. But it will be one you know.copyright protection101PENANAqkZsGab5bJ

Goldenslaughter grumbled, but closed her eyes…copyright protection101PENANA62LcTHYcJH

Silence.copyright protection101PENANAjzSMJ5Psfe

Until…copyright protection101PENANAEFyE8fPjl1

A long time ago: Little One ran away from home.copyright protection101PENANA3r3PDXxC9h

The Realms are many. Little One came first to the Plane of Fear. Aimless for a time, the pressing weight there grew and grew until it eventually became completely unbearable. Nightmares had become friends, monsters heroes, and light dark…copyright protection101PENANAktRcfAh42x

The crucible was slipped, and escaped.copyright protection101PENANAjHdSml8cFt

Little One travelled the Trail of Sorrow for a longer time. People came and went. Fellow travelers, some. Friendship blossomed like a weed, but love was reserved for flowers, and the Trail was rocky…copyright protection101PENANAdJVgzzd6bn

With bloody feet, it was eventually abandoned.copyright protection101PENANAovQfI5P0aS

The Mountain of Rage came next. Little One climbed it instead of going wide around. Lost for a time in the rocky heights, the peak was eventually found, and crossed...copyright protection101PENANAxuALmW7u8N

Although not without cost.copyright protection101PENANAYmwUC6tPdF

In the Land of Peace, Little One found no respite. The people were kind, but careful. There was no want, and a restlessness grew...copyright protection101PENANAcBb3QT8GTj

It was left in haste.copyright protection101PENANAzrNada7kFf

Little One crossed the Sea of Joy, marveling at the strangeness of it all. Creatures of the depths were discovered, normally hidden from sight. A voyage of discovery…copyright protection101PENANA7DCEyeK24Y

But all voyages come to an end.copyright protection101PENANAHgzSkqLs7F

Little one debarked at the Port of Pain, and lashed out…copyright protection101PENANAMH7ARkKYFp

There was naught to do but leave.copyright protection101PENANAeN3QrB4cD8

Crossing the River of Regret after, Little One found trackless wilderness. No map could show the way now, so far from all that was commonly known. Little One trekked, and discovered, and came across a treasure: Hope….copyright protection101PENANAalpKdJaZci

Bartered off without good purpose, the true value unknown.copyright protection101PENANAFZZMzQ7jPN

Quit of the wild, Little One finally settled among the old Town of Tribulation. Learning, and growing. Building a place to call One’s own…copyright protection101PENANAJ3ANU2pZf2

Years passed. Life went on, and Little became Big...copyright protection101PENANA8poyaBilBv

Until one day came a message from afar. Afterwards: Big One closed up shop and embarked on a journey, heading back...copyright protection101PENANADguC23tanj

Big One crossed the River of Regret and returned to the Port of Pain, enduring now without complaint to set sail. The Sea of Joy was again a delight, and all was savored until arriving at the other side, satisfied. In the Land of Peace, Big One took more care. There was value to be found, and it was sought… yet even still, eluded. Peace was left again, though with a vow to return. Going wide about the Mountain of Rage, Big One found the Trail of Sorrow. All was seen anew, and it was bittersweet. Halfway along, another way beckoned. The Trail was left…copyright protection101PENANAX7nyUhAjhP

And…copyright protection101PENANAmpfKXpmfKX

Big One took the Path of Truth, short and narrow, back to the Plane of Fear. Standing between here and home, she crossed it, though it seemed to hold power no longer. Heroes, nightmares and dreams all changed to memory. Big One finally returned home, and found it small. Changed… but so was Big One, who had forgotten the reason for running away in the first place.copyright protection101PENANALoef1gjurH

Understanding. Peace. And finally…copyright protection101PENANAOpObXJtx3K

Unity.copyright protection101PENANAnp9Ca72xnN

Big became One, and One ruled all. Though someday, another Little One would come…copyright protection101PENANAv8bJoc0HHr

Goldenslaughter opened her eyes…copyright protection101PENANAovRdHOWamZ

… then sat up in her dark, luxurious canopied bed. “This version is… different.”copyright protection101PENANAVJp5mAco7A

There is more.copyright protection101PENANAcDJnm7zmOh

Ignoring this, she hopped out of bed and swiftly headed for the entrance door, firmly pulling it open now to reveal coiling, living darknesscopyright protection101PENANAOdMFqutnEP

A *grinding* sound, then a metal glint became the Wraith Knight’s helmet, turning.copyright protection101PENANAnAzMFWmSku

“Rouse the Emissaries,” Queen Goldenslaughter commanded firmly. “I have an answer.”copyright protection101PENANAsx7bUujuQ8

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