Return of the Reaper

Thousands of years ago, the Reaper, Demon Lord and ruler of all Creation, was betrayed and his empire turned to dust. Now he has returned, and is looking for revenge on the one who betrayed him.


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23. Chapter twenty three

 Despite the throng, there was a deep silence in the hall of the Doomed King. Usually only the members of the reigning council came here, but now it looked as if no one else could fit in.

 

 The only free space was in the center of the hall, where a stout nordheim watched and was watched. The silence lasted for a few minutes, until finally the dark and skinny king stood up.

 

 “I salute you, noble Vachel.” His voice was weak and trembling, for the many years had taken their toll “My body has felt your presence, and my soul has returned from the abyss to hear your words.”

 

 The herald bowed deeply “I am sorry I disturbed your eternal rest, o king, but a new menace looms on the horizon.” The crowd started murmuring until the herald raised his hand “The time has come for the nordheim to leave their pointless war against the fae, for a much worse evil has crept into Creation.”

 

 Silence fell again on the room, as fear gripped the hearts of the crowd. The king fell on his throne, his joints creaking loudly. With a barely audible voice he said “Then, it is as the horrors have whispered in my ears?”  Vachel nodded, and grief filled his features, for he knew great perils awaited not only his people, but all of Creation.

 

 With a surge of energy he stood up and thundered “Listen to me, sons of the north!” His voice was now booming and strong. Those reunited felt their heart split: there was great joy, because the king would once again lead their armies to battle. But, on the other hand, that meant that they would be sorely tested, and probably be wiped out of existence in case they were found wanting “The evil that made us join our enemies so long ago has returned! The Reaper is back, and Death in the Wind and the seven once again walk this world!”

 

 Not even the authority of the ancient king could keep the crowd under control. The noble warriors pushed at each other in their hurry for leaving the hall and spreading the ill news, until finally only the king and the herald were left, facing each other.

 

 “You haven’t changed a bit, old friend.” The king said “I can see your new masters are treating you well.”

 

 “I can’t complain.” Answered the herald, shrugging “There’s something you need to know. The Reaper isn’t looking for the conquest of Creation, but only for revenge upon Death in the Wind.” Sadness filled his immortal countenance when he said “I must take my leave now, for other businesses claim my attention. I rest easy knowing that you are leading your kind once again. We will not see each other again in this world.”

 

 A tear slid through the Doomed King’s eyes, for he departed from one of the oldest links he had to the far off days of his youth. Silently, they took each other’s wrists, in the old salute of the nordheim warriors.

 

 Then the herald turned around and started walking towards his next destination.

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