Hi everyone. Here's chapter 12. Please e-mail me your comments!! Also feel free to view my webpage at http://spiffy_psycho.tripod.com. They really let me know whether or not this work is worth the effort. Oh yes, there's naughty words and some sex scenes, so if you're under 18.. Well, you know the rules. It's your butt, not mine. ;-) Thanks for reading!



The Dark One

by David M. Roduner

Chapter 12

Mørkt Servio sat in the throne room, sulking. Calamon, that old bat, was still hanging on. Bloody bastard. The Cardinal's spell seemed to have lost its hold upon this foolish mortal. Mørkt fretted, though. The Cardinal was acting strangely. He was seen sneaking around corners in plots even The Dark One could not fathom. But what if he was plotting against The Dark One? Who would be blamed? Would Mørkt be punished for the Cardinal's disobedience? The left hand decided that he would resolve this problem himself. He would even block this thought from his master. Mørkt shuddered at the punishment he would receive should his master discover his secret plot.

Roland and Mahou simply stared in awe. Trimer, god of the current, had broken the Goddess' law. Trimer glanced around nervously, half-expecting instant death. He looked down upon the humans in The Mist Weaver and urged them, "Fly! Escape while you can!" As if waking from a reverie, Roland and Mahou began to row furiously, escaping the shores of Frivesland.

"Well, it was a nice day... until old red cloak showed up," chuckled Mahou. Roland shook his head, amazed how his traveling companion could maintain such a bubbly attitude after their previous adventure.

Mwezi Wimbo studied each of the three members of the party quietly, gauging their abilities. "So how does one with the gift end up in this desert?" Roger the White asked as politely as possible.

Mwezi laughed heartily. "The white man sees only what he wishes! How typical. Ah, well. Welcome to my land." Cor let out a not too subtle note of discontent, not feeling welcome in the slightest. John threw him a warning gaze with his eyes. Mwezi's eyes fell upon Cornelius and then on Jonathan. "Anam cathram, I see," he smiled. Roger's eyes lit up at this, recognizing a phrase from his own ring of time. "My people want vengeance for what you have done to the Xyanth cat. What to do..." Mwezi pondered, switching thoughts at breakneck speed.

"Well, you're a fire wizard, aren't you?" Cornelius quietly piped in, unable to meet Mwezi's gaze. He was clearly embarrassed about his prior vocal comment, with a healthy dose of guilt poured upon him like syrup by John. The Sorcerer of Fire nodded, asking Cornelius to continue. Cor eyes John, silently pleading that John continue on his behalf.

"My boy is right," John said with a surge of pride. "You emit the weakest fire spell you have, and Mr. Pervert here, Roger the White, can use a wink spell to dispel it." Comprehension was dawning upon the party's faces. "If the gods of the forest wish us free, it must be done."

Mwezi crossed his arms. "Such a lie to the people of my tribe who have lovingly cared for this land for centuries before recollection! Why would I do such a thing to my good, honest people?!"

"Because they would kill us otherwise," countered Roger the White. "You know what evil dwells in Frivesland, not to mention the sphere of time. And where would it go once it has attained its goal? You know exactly where: south. There are far worse things than draughts," Roger added, grimly.

Mwezi nodded in comprehension. "The insult to my brethren would still be unforgivable," he countered, an obvious turmoil warring through his heart. His love forthe people of his land was great, but he could feel the importance of this party's mission, whatever it may be.

"Would you have your brothers destroy the bearers of Demonsdeath and Lifeshield?" Jonathan asked pompously. A whispered 'no' escaped Mwezi's lips as he began to view John and Cor in a very different light, almost in awe. "The Dark One is out there, and we must destroy him! Now I beg of you, please help us in our hour of need. Unless you prefer a world of having your brethren, as you call them, used as slaved and altered to his wicked desires." Mwezi's face made it plain that he had no interest in such a world. Cor looked at John with unadulterated love and admiration. This was his anam cathram. Cor put his arm around John's waist.

The sea had presented Mahou and Roland with a tempest. "Almost makes you wish that you were back playing with the woodshark clan," Roland bellowed into the gusts of wind. Mahou paused, glanced at Roland with a smirk and shook his head. "Thank you for reminding me why I have always loathed boating by the way," Roland continued, as the Mist Weaver was tossed back and forth in the angry sea. Suddenly, a large wave formed, jumping over the side of the boat and hit Roland, making him thoroughly drenched. Roland attempted to squeeze the water out of his clothing and sighed in resignation.

"Gone for an afternoon swim?" Mørkt Servio asked, snickering. The Cardinal almost jumped out of the steaming tub in which he was soaking. He looked at Mørkt and breathed a sigh of relief. "My dear Cardinal," Mørkt said, pacing the bath, clearly enjoying putting the Cardinal ill at ease, "I hear the strangest rumors." The Cardinal bugged out his eyes as if to innocently say, "rumors?"

"And then I see a vessel taken out, with the Cardinal of Frivesland and the Captain of my guard in an apparent mutiny, attacking unimportant mortals. My own guard," Mørkt mused, tossing a bloody severed finger in the back, "regretted his actions a bit too late, I fear. At least he was stopped before we had a serious coup d'etat on our hands. I don't believe our Lord would find this very beneficial for his plan."

The Cardinal began to eye Mørkt with fear. What was he planning? His eyes shifted nervously, detailing Mørkt Servio's every move. The Cardinal slowly got out of the bath and covered himself with a thick, warm robe. He sneezed and cursed. His misadventure was having a negative effect upon his health. The Cardinal turned his head and noticed that Mørkt Servio was standing next to him, breathing his hot, putrid breath down the Cardinal's neck. Losing his fear and regaining his malice, the Cardinal jumped toward Mørkt, who had momentarily lost interest in the Cardinal, and bit deeply into his leg. It left a deep mark. Mørkt grabbed the wound and howled in pain, looking up just in time to see the Cardinal preparing to plunge a knife deep into Servio's heart.

Mørkt snarled in anger and squeezed the Cardinal's wrist so roughly that he dropped the weapon. The Cardinal stared in fear as Mørkt lifted him up by the neck as if he weighed no more than a cup of water, and flung him violently against the hard stone walls of the bath. The Cardinal hit the wall roughly and slide down, landing with a splash in a cold, unheated bath, water sloshing onto the floor.

The Cardinal groaned in paid as blood dripped from the back of his skull innto the water. "Do not attempt to cross me again," Mørkt Servio visciously threatened, spitting on the Cardinal as he lost consciousness. The left hand of the Dark One pivoted and briskly exited the bloody bath, its reddened waters mixing on the floor, collecting for unfortunate servants to clean up later.

John was wincing in pain, clutching his leg. A deep mark had suddenly appeared on his leg. It seemed to resemble teeth marks, though that seems impossible. "Having too much fun behind the huts, Cornelius?" Roger the White teased playfully, trying to liven the situation. It did not work.

"Here sir," Cor said excitedly, almost bowling Mwezi out of the way, "It's Demonsdeath! Use your power to heal yourself!" Cor dropped the object at Jonathan's feet.

"Physician, heal thyself," Juhn musied to himself as he prepared to pull the power to perform magic. As John quickly healed the wound, a maddened Mwezi Wimbo ran at John with fury in his eyes.

"What are you doing, fool?! Don't you even know -

" - how to block?" Mørkt mused to himself, looking at his healed leg, laughing to himself. Mørkt pulled up his dark orb and called Stefan Jotes through it. "They are here. In the south. In Sior Geimhreadth," Mørkt said quietly. Excellent was hissed back.

"We must leave now," Mwezi yelled, hastily tying his amulet of power around his neck. "You will leaaad them to my land and my people. Whatever happens to them, I blame on you," Mwezi said hotly, pointing his finger accusingly at John, "and will come back to you threefold!"

"I will stay and protect your people, then," John said quietly. Mwezi's angry expression softened, and he laughed mockingly at John. Mwezi snidely commented that one little white boy was no match for the Dark One. Jonathan smirked and lifted Demonsdeath. With a surge of light, Mwezi was lifted up, circled around in the air like water going down a whirlpool and was thrown about fifteen feel away onto a soft pile of hay. John had a smile of self-satisfaction drawn upon his face. Cor was so thrilled by the display that he jumped in John's arms and kissed him deeply.

Mwezi Wimbo had rejoined the party. "Lucky try," Mwezi grumbled, "and I wasn't even ready."

"In the real world you must always be ready," Cor piped in, as the true smart-ass he could be and imagined how carnally ready he was, "and in battled you don't have time to re-charge. A great man told me that." Roger the White blushed crimson.

Roland shivered. "It sure is getting nippy," he said to Mahou. Mahou nodded in agreement. It seemed as if they had been sailing for eons, though it had only been a few days. They had far to go before reaching the icy continent of Crìoha Tuaisceartacha. Roland sensed that and said, "Maybe we can blow ol' man Trimer's horn and he can help us along." After seeing the reaction on Mahou's face, Roland hastily added, "or maybe not."

Quietly, Mahou began to sing to himelf:

Oh how the wind blow
Through her sails
And the waves sing me to sleep
Oh how the moon
Lights the way
And the wood around me creeps
Insi Ocean
Sing to me
Lord and Lady brought you here
Allow us safety
Allow us peace
Allow us to breathe in your grace
Insi Ocean
Beautiful, bountiful
Gift of the goddess

Roland stared out to sea, his breath forming before him, reflecting upon the moment and wondering if he would ever see his son again.

Stefan stood staring out of his window. Do I really want to go? This world is mine. I don't really like that time, that other place, that supposed world that Mørkt is in. Stefan emitted a sigh. Will, it was time to work the amgic required to travel between the rings of time. Stefan called in his faithful secretary.

"How may I help you, sir?" she asked politely as Stefan Jotes approached her.

"This," he said, slicing off her head, along with its fine black hairs, with a kitana blade that was hanging on the wall for decoration. "Reduction in force, my dear," Stefan said as he quickly collected the copius amount of bloddy from the pools staining the plush carpet in a vial. Stefan walked over to the vacant mahogany board room table and emptied the vial in a circular pattern. Stefan lit a match and dropped it on the carpet, igniting the room in a slow tribal dance of flames. He them stood in the center of the circle of flames, proclaiming: "Oh Dark One, with the secret name of Lichquoit known only by his left and right hands, transport your loyal servant with the blood of the innocent and the burning of man's work!"

In a flash, Stefan Jotes, software genius, was gone. That night, CNN ran a sad story about the destruction of the Cranbàs headquarters. The chairman of the board and CEO, Stefan Jotes, was believed to have been burned alive in the buidling he had built five years ago, with millions of dollars, acquired from an unknown source. Not bad for a high school drop out, they commented. No educational record had ever been found on Stefan. In fact, no records of him ever existed. It was as if he appeared out of thin air. On another note, the president of the United States believed this was due to terrorist attackes and plans to bomb every country in the world until someone accepts the blame and is willing to have that country used as a nuclear bomb test site.

"How nice of you to join me, brother," Mørkt said, noting Stefan's appearance. "We have an army to prepare," he continued as the two hands of the Dark One entered a room filled with hundreds of brutes snorting and grunting in excitement.