Two figures, one young, slender and beautiful, the other, extraordinarily tall, lean, muscular, and by all means, bespoke; ‘male’, in a demonic sense, stood deep down the bowels of the chateau-like structure, planning the ultimate destruction of the mortal world..
Tell me, little Perigren, what goes in that pretty head of yours.”, said ‘The Face’, looking down at the slender, ravishing girl, even though she was calmly standing far across the large and broad table, in the vast and vaulted throne room of the Lord and Commander of the Infernal Armies. “You did not come here to merely besmirch and thus destroy my bride-to-be. Surely you must have more to ease my displeasure.
The slender and ravishing girl, Perigren Ostlanna Temez, looked at her liege, lord, and commander with her soulless, detached eyes.
“My Liege.”, she said in her comly bold and detached voice. “I cannot see the future as you can for my life does not reach thus far, but I know the hearts and minds of mortals. I know how they work, how they act, how they seek the things they do..
And more importantly, why they do them..”
For a bare moment, Ostlanna Temez held her own, not to consider what she would say, but to emphasize the importance of what came next..
“They already suspect there’s something coming and they’re merely looking for an excuse and the Orken have given them more than ample of it; their scouts, their trackers, and their rangers are all seeking and they will find their query. It is only a matter of time, My Liege. When they do, our window of opportunity and our element of surprise will be gone.
This, you must see..
Once they find your Orken, they will engage them in a delaying tactic, buying what time they would need while the elves and humans gather their armies as they did at Themalsar. It is very, very likely their dwarven allies will also come to their aid and from our flanks and our rear.. And as strong and vicious as your Orken are, in the end, they will be vastly outnumbered and slaughtered and decades of planning will be for naught. That, however, will not be your true loss, My Liege..
The Orken can be replaced. Their ‘revelation’, can not..
Humans, as a whole, are at a slumber. They truly are unawares or prefer to ignore the signs around them, favoring such bliss to a state of perpetual terror. The discovery of the Orken at their doorstep will have raised their general awareness to full wakefulness and remind them of the dangers in which they live.
I estimate a very high possibility that such awareness will pull them together all the more. Enough to form yet another alliance..
A stronger alliance..
For that was the true and underlying reason their Kingdom of Isles was founded in the first place.. An alliance that will overrun the Demon Gate at Demon Plains and destroy it.
Should that happen, there truly will be nothing left to hold them back nor to keep them at bay from gathering at Demon Wall by the hundreds of thousands and move against Gullem the Damned himself, and he has the only working and stable Demon Gate left anywhere in Kingdom of the Isles.”
Perigren paused once more. This one, because it was quite unavoidable; her unhealed back was getting at her, and at an incredible rate…
“My Liege..”, she said hoarsely. “..we faced only the high elves of High Woods and the gnomes of Silent Hills, with a pittance of humans, the local dwarves, and some loosely gathered druids with their pixies and sprites, at Themalsar and he still could not defeat them. He outnumbered them and still failed to overrun them.
I will not argue about the inadequacy of that old priest, but the matter of fact remains; he could not defeat the elves and the gnomes, even when you, My Liege, lured, ambushed, and entrapped Priceptine himself, down in the dungeons of that temple..
Despite all the diversions in place to delay, the knights of Koruxan, the paladins of Durkahan, and the mystics of Vodgar still managed to slip by your forces and join with the elves and the gnomes.. And when they came, Themalsar was utterly thwarted and his great temple put to ruins, and some eight hundred-odd years later, killed.. by a bunch of nobodies.
True, they had your bride-to-be, and it is always easier to second guess events that which we have not personally witnessed, but I am sure you know, she was no match for Themalsar..”
She fell silent as she swayed.
The Face stared at the frailing girl and there was no mercy, nor compassion in that stare.
There never was, and never had been—
“Sit, little Perigren. My presence is not a good place to fall on your back.”
—only pitiless calculation.
Perigren slumped and stumbled, but did not sit.
“Your presence is not a good place to fall on my back, sitting or otherwise, My Liege.”, she said with a rasping voice, breathing harder.
The Face smiled. The pretty little peregrine was not only smart but she was also cunning. All her actions, all her choices in words were calculated; just enough to aggravate or ‘compose’ a reaction out of him, yet appear meek, submissive, and barely docile enough not to get physical with her..
Quite the actor she was and playfully deceitful —all the traits one would find in a fully grown succubus.
Too bad she wasn’t one. The smart, ‘meek’ ones were always delicious and delightful to drag into his bed. The way they would squirm up until they died of ecstasy, was always a superb experience..
On the other hand, it was also a good thing she wasn’t.. The succubi were too lust-driven to make good generals, nor long-term planners, where massed forces were concerned. Their long-term plans were always on a singular, ‘target obtained’ basis and ended when they finally devoured the said acquired target.
Whatever she was playing at, because that’s exactly what she was doing, it had been pre-planned.
Many days, weeks, and perhaps, months of thought and research had been put into it and Kardax’Trakxa would find out soon enough. He always did. And when he did, his displeasure —or pleasure, would echo, high and low..
The Face was sure, the little peregrine also had her own end accounted for; likely by some fast-acting, powerful poison; the pretty ones always went for poison.
Still, she was a step-up from the usual brawlers and ambushers who had tried their way with their claws, fangs, barbed tentacles, and their hell-forged weapons. One could only take so much delight in repeat butchery upon failed assassination attempts, and The Face detested mediocrity.
The pretty little peregrine would get at him where he least expected.
And the question was not, ‘Would she?’
The question was, ‘From where?’
Not for a moment did it cross his mind that the pretty girl with the succulent flesh, and currently squirming in pain, had approached him in good faith..
Good faith? Really, now..
This was Hell!
There was never any good faith going on here..
“So..”, said The Face. “..you have a plan, then?”
“My Liege.”, whispered Perigren. “I only have strong suggestions..”
“You come here.. with no plan?”, murmured The Face and there was a dangerous quality in his voice.
“I am not a general, My Liege, nor a commander. I hold no troops, no status, and no presence, nor do I have any prestige to show for. In the eyes of those under your command, I am a mere pretty face —a juicy piece of flesh and tasty skin with a ‘limited lifespan’, and barely tolerated and only due to being the joy project of a once, favored concubine.
And now, she is dead..
I AM, MY LIEGE,
EFFECTIVELY, A NOBODY!
To say that I have a plan, would indicate, ‘I know better’..
What I do know is the accumulation of small, seemingly insignificant parts put together to see the bigger picture, and make mere suggestions. And the current picture suggests we use the available resources, dormant or otherwise, in the area and take full advantage of your hidden Orken. I estimate their discovery in less than two months. Whether they think they can’t be seen nor discovered, My Liege, is a moot point.
And that is putting it rather optimistically.”
She looked up and faced her liege and commander, conjuring everything she had left into that gaze;
Boldness and surety, a touch of a smirk, a squint of an eye, and deep, distracting breaths..
..and no small amount of ‘curious’ arrogance.
“It is time, My Liege..”, she said.
“IT IS TIME TO RELEASE THE HORDE!”
For a long, thoughtful moment, The Face mused at the quietly panting, pretty girl..
“You waltz a dangerous dance, little Perigren.. You would know of the ‘available resources’ in the area, how?”, he asked, more out of curiosity than menace, really.
“Auntie Irine..”, Perigren said, with all the cool detachment she could muster. “She talked in her sleep.. This, I think, you already know, My Liege..”
“Have an answer for everything, do you?”, he asked with amusement.
“Only for the inconvenient questions, My Liege.”, she replied.
“I know, Irine talked in her sleep. The question is, how do you?”
Perigren Ostlanna Temez went for a poor attempt of an amused smile. She felt her time was almost up and with utter surety, she did not want to faint in pain and drop —on her back, before her liege.
“Auntie Irine also liked to cuddle, My Liege, and very much, with her soft and succulent trainees, when she was otherwise not entertaining you..
Said, it was all part of the program!”
Kardax’Trakxa ‘The Face’ stared down at the squirming girl who stubbornly clung to her cool, and there was, not so subtle wrath in his burning eyes..
..and when he spoke, he blared.
Perigren Ostlanna Temez; Perigren, ‘peregrine’ kelimesinden türemedir ve yabacı, garip,uzaktan gelen, egzotik anlamlarına gelir. Ostlanna ise, ‘oust’, dışlanmış, ötelenmiş, reddedilmiş kelimesinden gelir ve ‘dışlanmış/ötelenmiş/reddedilmiş Lanna’ demektir:
“Garip, yabancı ve dışlanmış Lanna Temez.”