The early morning fog was heavy with moisture. Its wetness permeated and settled upon every building, vehicle, tree and blade of grass. Its thickness hid the horrors that lay within, hid the things that shambled down the city’s cold dead streets or wondered through ruined buildings blackened by corruption and disease.
The fog carried with it the smell of fungus, decomposition and death. It carried with it the spores of distress that wriggles through the pours and settles in the organs of the body, tormenting the nerves, itching the eyes and driving the mind into depredation and paranoia; into insanity.
As time passes the skin turns black and grows thin, splitting and cracking, bleeding. The host is numb to the pain because his mind is already gone. His mind is nothing but shadows shifting in the night.
It only took a night, a twelve hour moment in time to reap such a state, such a bountiful harvest. It only took a single night to turn what had been a hive world devoted to the Emperor’s light, into a maddening world of death and decay.
So why am I not happy? Why am I not pleased? I walk through streets unencumbered by the shifting souls around me and am not touched by such beauty anymore. The things that once spurned me to greater works do not seem to matter. What is wrong with me? Am I not the Despoiler? I am doing what I was made to do. I am walking the path set before me but I am not happy. Why?
The dead shamble all about, mindless of what they are doing, mindless of what they have been made to do, the purpose of their now unified existence. I push one down out of boredom mostly. It shambles and is unbalanced as it seeks to right itself, but it is a mindless thing and slow in its reactions and reflexes. It topples over as if it was a paper in the wind.
In the past pushing the dead would make me laugh, but now I am unmoved. It has no feelings so tormenting it is to no satisfaction. What use is it to torment the dead? They cannot enjoy it.
Maybe I am too good at my craft now. After all, I am now accomplishing in one night what used to take months for me to do. Maybe I am rushing things, but… no. That cannot be. Well, maybe it could be just that. I am not savoring the chase anymore.
Whole worlds crumble before me in but a moment and I am not satisfied. Why? Why am I not satisfied? The dead move past me in shifting currents, like a river slowly making its way down a slightly angled hillside. There are millions of them moving about, but they do not make a sound, not with their voices anyway.
The fog is thick with moisture and it glistens off of their rotting flesh and weighs heavily upon their cloths. I remember when this was exciting. I can think back, not so very long ago when I corrupted the first world I had come to. Oh, what memories. They bring a smile to my face and I chuckle with renewed vigor. The dead around me collapse as I lose my hold on them for a moment.
Regaining a hold on them would prove unobtainable if I were a lesser being. I let them stay there and step over them. There are millions more, so the loss of a few does not bother me. But still, a lack in discipline is a loss of skill. ‘Get up.’ I say to them and they obey me. I smile for a moment.
I am bored with this. I am bored with just killing worlds and making the dead walk. There has got to be something more, but what?
Shambling dead? Check. Decay in the streets? Check. Fear and torment? Well, there has not been so much of that lately. I am truly bored. ‘Dance.’ I command. Every corpse on the planet begins to line-dance, right leg out, right leg in, right leg out and shake it all about.
They dance to an old tune I remember from long ago, back before I was what I now am. ‘Smile when you dance.’ I command. Dead faces all around begin to smile through their rigor, revealing yellow teeth awash with decay.
They lift their arms and swirl them overhead; turn around in mock pirouettes and dip on creaking bones and spilling flesh. Well, this is certainly getting better. I am not so bored now, but still there has to be something more, something that is escaping my attentions, but what?
Well, it will come to me sometime, most likely when I no longer need it, I suppose. Millions of corpses continue to dance and smile, but I am growing tired of it now. I command them to stop and they do. When I figure out what it is that I am missing I will no longer be missing it, I suppose. And if I am not missing it than I will no longer be bored, unless what I find I am missing adds nothing to what I already know. Dreadful thoughts, I know.
I kneel onto one knee and place my elbow onto my leg and my head down onto my hand; thinking. Thinking, thinking about what? There is nothing to think about. I look up and all around me the corpses are kneeling too, mimicking my movements and I laugh when I see it. With a though I let my will come back to me and watch as my puppets collapse upon the fog-moist ground.
As I make my way back to my transport I consider what I will do when I come to the next Emperor forsaken place I come to. What will I do? I am already becoming bored with ideas.
A good reputation take a long time to build, but only a moment to destroy. Wow, that's deep!
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