Morning. The days I can no longer remember.
The darkness which I have come to adore, as it cloaks my wretched form, has again withered away in the face of the sunlight. I squint and bare my teeth. It is all I can do in reply. I go to meet Lady Criid. But I remember that she has gone, as has every other soul who once followed my word. I lie down and cry for half an hour. Such is the majority of my existence. I don’t think the Scourge know I reside here yet, above the Scholomance. The howls and screams of the damned are all the company I have in this barren room. I look up at the smog-choked sky. I look out across the water to the east, and see my childhood town of Darrowshire. I have come a long way since then. I can still see the ghosts of my old friends, shuffling between the worn doorways. Perhaps they are really there, watching me. Or maybe it is another element of my broken mind. Who knows? It is silent now. This is my home. Thrown out from the Alliance, I am no longer welcome in any mortal house. My foul hunch and my deformed hand serve as daily reminders of my pathetic life and its failures. I touch my face wearily, and recoil at the soft, sick-feeling flesh. Everything I touch dies. The stones, the bugs, even the grass beneath my feet. I am truly alone in the world. No birds fly overhead. No night creatures let out shrill calls in the night. Just the screams. The endless screams from below. I sometimes forget who I am. I have forgotten almost everything now. I no longer know the names of my followers. Only Criid. And I no longer know the names of those who destroyed my life. All I remember is the group that stole decades of my life from me.
The Scarlet Crusade. The Scarlet Crusade. THE SCARLET CRUSADE.
Those mindless slaves. The greedy, corrupt, insane fools who blindly follow the Light, but at the same time soil it’s teachings. And they call me mad. THEY are the ones who are mad! They lead a long-dead cause to retake this dead land, the very land upon which this old keep rests. But it is impossible. The pleas and death cries of the victims below back my claim. The cause is hopeless. They are just a shade of a hero’s call now. Nothing more.
I cry again, sobbing into my tattered robe. It is common now. I live for nothing of my own in this world; I cannot take the pain of the hatred wrought against me. A god whose only believers were false. Even my most trusted ally has left me. And in my old, withering state, I sit here, and contemplate my life, and I tell myself that I did the best that I could.
I don’t believe me.
But I have one last ace up my sleeve. Oh yes, I do. Indeed I do. No club or diamond, but something more. My final deliverance from a life of wasted opportunities. Soon, all shall know this ace. And soon, all shall quail in fear at the very sound of my name.
My name. Lombard Ferranon. Duke Warpmind. Soon to be – THE RULER OF ALL THE WORLD!