Offerings of Sacrifice and Torment

EVENTS NEWS #31
Date: 6/11/2013 at 12:33
From: Anonymous
To : Everyone
Subj: Offerings of Sacrifice and Torment

The man groaned slightly as he came to, then gagged against the cloth in his mouth, as the sight of the scalpel made him involuntarily attempt to scream.

"Ah, good, I'm glad you're awake. This will be much more effective with you watching." With that, the torturer drew the scalpel across the man's stomach, deep enough to cut skin, fat, and muscle. The cut was met with another strangled cry, this one piteous in the agony it conveyed.

The torturer continued his work, while striking an amiable tone of voice. "You know, you've really managed an impressive feat. You invoked some old, arcane law of the trading guilds to make sure that poor journeyman wouldn't receive any compensation for his work, and you argued your case so convincingly that half the people there thought you were arguing for the betterment of society, rather than to line your own pockets."

Noting that his subject had nearly passed out, the torturer paused and placed his hand over the merchant's head, silently willing him to alertness. With a feeble kick against his restraints, the man came to, and the torturer smiled brightly. "There you are. As I was saying, you're a conniving bastard. Now, it so happens that the man you utterly ruined is more than passingly devout, and he's been praying mightily for something nasty to happen to you." After a dramatic pause, he twisted his charred lips into a gruesome grin. "It so happens Someone was listening."

The torturer took a step back from the man, inspecting his handiwork. The man's stomach was now open to the elements, and the torturer reflected that infection would kill the man in a matter of days, even if he stopped his work now. Setting aside his bloody scalpel, he lifted a large sack, high enough for his subject to see. "You recognize this, yes?" He was met with a glassy, pained stare, but behind the merchant's eyes, a flicker of recognition made his torturer chuckle, low and raspy.

"Yes, your victim's savings. I hope you don't mind that I lifted it from your vault. Since you're such a glutton for gold, I thought there was a better home for it." Twisting his charred lips into another smile, the torturer began withdrawing coins and inserting them into the man's stomach. After a moment, the main fainted, and the torturer chuckled again. "I suppose you don't have to be awake for all of it."

As the satchel emptied and the torturer decided it was time to sew the merchant back up, a ward in his mind suddenly activated. With a slight frown, the man turned from the merchant, closed his eyes, and cast his awareness across the leagues separating him from Sar-Sargoth and Malapardis, the focus of one of his long-term projects. In the instant it took to refocus his attention on his prey, he reviewed the events that had led to this moment.

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Malapardis had attacked Desmond, over events from the life he had led before being called by his god. That had been sufficient motivation to respond to the many prayers that had been voiced to the God of Vengeance over the years, seeking the pain and suffering of Malapardis for the loss of life and goods that he had orchestrated over his long life.

Desmond had used 'sacrifices' of sorts from those he punished in the name of his God to craft a mental construct, designed to turn Malapardis into a mindless idiot, bent on nothing more than slaughter.

When a group of bandits had sought to make camp in Moredhel territory, Desmond had slipped a necklace imbued with the construct into their equipment. When Malapardis, joined by Tora and several other Moredhel, had destroyed the camp, the necklace fell into Malapardis's hands.

The construct had entered his mind, but Malapardis had connived to seal the construct away, behind a psychic barrier in his mind. Desmond had waited patiently, confident that such a defense would not hold indefinitely. Now, however, a ward had fired, indicating heightened activity by the construct.

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Returning his attention to the present, Desmond focused his arcane senses on Malapardis. His quarry stood silent, deep in the citadel of the ancient city of the Dark Brotherhood. With some surprise, Desmond sensed the presence of many of his allies, deep in his psyche. Grudgingly, Desmond ceded that the spell required for such an infusion into the psyche was both imaginative and well-wrought.

Desmond observed for some time, sensing the progression of the Moredhel through the maze of Malapardis's mind. After a time, Desmond felt his construct make war against those that had made their way to it. In the end, the construct was destroyed from within Malapardis's mind, the killing blow struck by Mailys, the Champion of the Clan Dragon.

As Malapardis, joined by his allies, celebrated the destruction of the construct, Desmond relaxed his senses and snapped back to his body, located in a small basement below the home of a merchant of Salador.

Gripped by sadness that his plan had not come to fruition, Desmond turned to scowl darkly at the merchant, who was still unconscious and suspended by his wrists from a beam in the ceiling. As he reached for his needle and thread, Desmond mentally calmed himself. At the least, his construct had inconvenienced Malapardis, and caused the death of some of his allies, as they rooted through the deepest corner of his psyche -- itself surely a disquieting event for Malapardis.

Humming a cheerful tune under his breath, Desmond reflected that Malapardis might actually be of greater use alive than dead. Besides, there were others requiring his attention. Even now, his heart was filled with the calls of those seeking vengeance against their enemies.

Finishing his work and continuing to hum under his breath, Desmond began to exit the basement, considering that it had been far too long since he had visited the capitol of the Western Realm of the Isles.


Penned by my hand on the 6th of Kimia, in the year 47.