We return to the castle. The suspicion and fear that they had of me has become wonder and joy. The fragile alliance of the living revels in their victory, yet my soul is sorrowful and sick. I have not the heart to tell them it may be for naught, which is also the wise counsel the Imp gave me when I apprised him of my suspicions that were overheard by the Young Assassin.
“What do we say to the God of Death?” she asks. “Not today” I reply.
She reminds me of her desire to possess a saber. I tell her that I should have taken her on instead of her brother. The conversation turns towards what became of him, and I haven’t the faintest notion of how to answer that query. Even if I wanted to speak the truth how could I communicate it in a manner they would comprehend?
I can scarcely explain it to myself let alone to people who are near a millennia behind me in technology and culture. To them I’m a sorcerer from a faraway land they’ve never heard of. The Imp appears to understand that as a place beyond the stars but even that understanding falls short. Only the Queen has a proper understanding and that only serves to heighten my fear that I am bending this world to a will that I do not command.
Am I slave or am I tyrant? By either count I am no liberator.
I tell them that a curse of darkness has befallen him, making him a servant to a power other than himself. Dear Lady, please return him from the hell in which I entrapped him.
The fruits of my theft are as sweet as they are noxious. The Queen holds the same affection of me in her eye as I do in mine. Please be enthralled by my dreams and ideals and not by me. I have already failed her by that count and I’m quite certain that my petty desire will fail her again.
The counsel is called. Among them is the Seer whose face is cut on the left side. Among those who are absent include the Bastard still won’t wake and his sister, the Lady hasn’t left his bedside. I make the case that all the labors up till this point had been part of his grand scheme. While speaking of the scope and scale of his foresight the Seer interrupts,
“Like the hand of God”
No! Oh no…
The Queen senses my cold terror and immediately calls for an adjournment. They leave the room to us, the Seer never taking his eyes off her as he’s wheeled out.
While we’re alone she conducts the entire conversation through telepathy. Truly the scope of her power and the rate of her growth are astonishing. Less a series of well formulated thoughts and more a trade of feelings, through it an understanding is reached. The King Other can’t see me because I’m not of this world and is growing increasingly blind to her because she can now block him. What we need is more like me.
This is the cosmos of my conception and that leaves a host of worlds with fighters worthy of the task. So it is that I am commanded to recruit and return with the necessary forces for me to defeat the King Other and his army. With a roaring torrent of rainbow light I vanish into the cosmos.