Thoughts in the Dark

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Silent for some town now, Sabachtha.

A shifting eddy in the Nether, a great sigh in a wash of Shadow.

You speak as if I initiate these dialogues rather than terminate them.

You are planning something. Tell me what it is or I shall crush your puny mortal soul.

I am contemplating whether or not to take a vacation.

... I hear the South Seas are lovely this time of year.

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I dare say that she matches you for arrogant blindness, demon.

A thousand curses upon our meeting, Sabachtha! If you feel it is so, then cease your torturing of me and return to inflict this treatment upon her!

Pain would merely fill her mind with ire, not understanding.

Besides, she has become too strong for the little priest. Do not think that we were unaware of your defeat--

And what is that to you, who are bound? Shall you trade jailers? I think not. If I were you, which I am most certainly nothing of the sort, I would not put my faith in one as ... fragile ... as she.

If you were to ask me, you are becoming more and more like us each day, what with all of the hiding about in the back of mortal's minds.

Yes. I must commend you priest, I have never seen something wrought with such subtlety as to chain men's spirits. You would certainly fail to break the raw power of my bindings upon your soul, but at least you would know yourself to be my slave.

As if he is not working to our ends, Old One.


The Shadows writhe and the Nether echoes silently with pain.

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'Where are your shadows, Sabachtha?' A tinny laugh.

I do not see how that should amuse you.

Tell me, how does it feel to know that all you have set out to do has failed?

Now you sound like the self-destructing whorelock. A good emulator picks one filth to imitate at a time.

That is why you shall fail, because you can only focus on one thing at a time, whilst all of the world can be at my call.

Indeed? Tell me, where are my shadows?


You see their weakness.

I am dead, not dull. I smelt it on her.

And what will you do if she smells us on you, her weakness so great? Do you think that your bond shall protect you?

In a way. I am not afraid to capitalize on the benefits of death.

Hah! You can do no better killing one of that magic than you did in destroying us, little priest. You would be consumed.

You might be correct.

...if I wasn't planning to destroy you.

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What scheme are you hatching, little priest? Why should you guide that one into an ability that could destroy you?

I have nothing to say to you on the matter.

I think he is enamored with her. Wouldn't you be? Her petite frame, raven-black hair, wan and decaying look, but vibrancy of life. He's always had a thing for Skafloc Ran'Deau's women, you know, attempting to steal them away from the Baron. Haven't you, Sabachtha? That's how you met me.

If you could kindly keep the inane drivel to a minimum...

So polite, this little schemer. He admittedly despises us and espouses an intention to destroy us, yet he kindly asks for our cooperation. What is your game, priest?

It's not a game to him, it's an obsession. Poor Sabachtha harbors a revulsion for fel magic, yet he's drawn to his pretty 'whorelocks' like a Bishop to the red light district. He's even turning himself into--


See? I've struck a chord. He plays most beautifully, don't you think?

No. He does not play at all. I once made a mistake of underestimating him, to our current predicament. I will not make that mistake again.

Hmm? Indeed. Unfortunately for you, I fear I am not easily estimated.

You're correct. It's impossible to not underestimate you when you have such ridiculous conceit.

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No, we must not ignore it. His forays into the Void concern me. And what has him in such a good mood?

He's a nuisance, nothing more. Don't concern yourself over his petty schemes; we bound him into this--

By a stroke of luck, doppleganger! If it had not been for his ignorance of another's magic, his plan would have succeeded and you and I would be sinking forever into the depths of the Void, never to return to our rightful places as gods of Azeroth.

His own arrogance shall be his downfall. Never forget that he considers himself a proto-deity of sorts. I am sure his mood of late is because he has found something that falls in line with his grand, impossible plan. The power he has today is only through us; do well to remember that we are his source.

And we are trapped only because of his power independent! I will not underestimate this blight upon my right of rule. This confinement is unacceptable, and I shall be free to crush him!

Then watch, with less paranoia and more calculation, I might say, so that when he hatches his next petty endeavor, we'll be waiting to greet him.

Watch him blather on with mortals on their plane? It is not when he is there, within our view, that I am concerned.

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I found you a bride.

Sabachtha, you know that I only have eyes for you.

Touch me with that again and I will burn it off.

Philanthropy is not enough, now matchmaking philadaemony as well?

I have not been so amused for quite some time. I'd almost be willing to unleash you upon the wench just to watch the ensuing melee. It would be marvelous entertainment.

I am no fool; you would do no such thing. I am not amused at all.

Lighten up. This will all be over soon.

When I crush you.

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I would say that I'm surprised, Sabachtha, to see you peeping into girls' diaries, but obviously by this point your cowardly perversions are more than clear and little shock or amusement remains.

Now, that is concerning. I have never seen you in such a dour opinion. Perhaps you are unsettled because you realize that your time grows short?

What is your meaning?! I see not how notes to exhausted warlocks shall overcome the bindings you have forced upon yourself! I am immortal, little priest, and no weapon wielded by one such as you has the power to keep me in my grave.

You speak truly.

What then of this grand charade? Why release us into her care? Surely you know that she would never restrain us as you have done.

Ah, so you have caught on to my scheme. I shall hand the keys over to this ailing whorelock, that I will have absolved myself of my position and can walk conscionably in mortal frailty across the plane of Azeroth, while she is broken by your great strengths, sending you anchorless into the writhing depths. I should have known that your inescapable intelligence would have seized upon my less-than-inscrutable motivations.

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At least, Sabachthan, you are beginning to rise above the disconsolate moodiness that has gripped you over the past months. I have quite enjoyed these new excursions with you.

Ha ha ha! The exhilarating tripped-along skitter like a spider racing across its web: the Walking has proven a most useful alternative in the wake of the whorelock's fall into grace.

Then let us move on and contact those that may be of real value, such as your brethren--

FOOL! He has no brethren now! Even the bonds of blood are as meaningless as the promises of the Light to its adherents! How should reach out to those who have turned inward on themselves to rot in the isolation of their decrepit mediocrity! It is time to rise above the weight of one's corpse and reign amongst the inky blackness of the night sky!

It seems we are unanimous in our nightly pleasure. Shall we move on to the next phase of the plan?

You've not fully disclosed your new plottings. Tell us now! Your machinations are always of the highest order and I anticipate a glimpse of your brilliance.

Well, next we have to ... ah ...


... I dare say I've forgot the next step of the plan. ...ah, yes! Now I remember! Before we can move the pieces about on the board, we have to appropriate those tools and learn how they can be directed for our means well enough to be useful to us.

Shall we go head-hunting then?


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Unperceived by me? Impossible! Betrayal will not be tolerated.

If not an entry point illicitly opened from the confines of our being, then... a manifestation of a scheme long discarded. Certainly perspective on the perpetuities of time, an understanding of past and future lends credible explanation. No power slipped past my web, so it was severed long before out meeting.

Hmm. It is no good to continue walking when another streaks rapidly across the Void to our goal.

I want it back.

Let us fetch it.

Subdue or crush the impertinent appendage.

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I do not at all see how this is clever.

Oh come now, to hear such a protestation from a minion of powers showing greater patient and cunning than anything else in existence is quite disappointing.

Three nights we have wasted on this place.

You would prefer we waste them in the Void?

Mmm, this is no worse than that desolation. But such a simple ruse --

The simpler the ruse the more compelling the deceit. When the fool arrives, our presence on that night will present to feeble minds a façade of power much more honest than an actual display of power, and the better --

If the fool arrives.

"Hmm, indeed!" You seem far too expectant of a response to such an off-putting and noncommittal message.

That is your shortcoming: dependence upon direct control, when subtle manipulation can cause all the pieces to fall into place on their own accord, never even feeling the spider's threads. Others will resist the grip of your hand, but it is a simple matter to allow them to grip your own arm and take you where you want to go. Why, when I ran the House under Netheryn --

It is passing midnight, Sabachtha. It does not seem as if the fool is falling into place this night. Shall we go Walking?

Silence! Someone approaches.

Hoy, isn't that... it is! Your beloved whorelo--


That damnable ....

Kill him.

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Welcome, welcome! So lovely of you to join us! Phuh! You thought to control one who controls such power? ...Control is a strong word.

Mmhmm. What a smart little boy you are.

Enough! Silence! Bind her! Sabachtha, this is no time to live out one of your fantasies, even if we are in your mind! And you stop your bothering! This is no time for your games, when we should be crushing that-- I will crush him, but not while I am having to maintain the balance here with her intrusion.

My, my, dear Sabachtan. I'd thought you'd rather enjoy my intrusion. Better than conversing with yourself, yes? Now be a good boy and submit.

Don't be a fool. Do you really think -- what are you doing?! Stop! She is such a lovely match for me! What, with the mastery of runestones, and now this... it's practically a paved road. Why don't you let me just-- I will not allow it! Destroy her. She now knows, or will figure it out. You have told us that much power has been toppled because of boasting and revelation before complete culmination, and you insist it is not yet time. Hmm, indeed! I understand your fascination with such a beautiful tool, but she has long proven no interest in our purposes and now she has become an obstacle. Allow a simple release and I will-- Silence! I will bind her myself. There is no time! The monkey will come round and destroy your body while you are fiddling with this. Complain to your cohort, it is not my preferred option either. Oh come now, Sabachtha, you are not thinking clearly. You never do with her. With any luck, this lie of an infatuation and none else will stick in her memory when she releases her spell. But she cannot! Not unless.... What am I not seeing? How soon you forget that which has embarrassed you in the past: My Shadows are still at their autonomous work.

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