We are the Shadows...
This one is a little different. We are the Shadows…
In the hallows he ran. Pitch black shadows gave chase as he fought down the panic that sought to hold him paralyzed in terror. His mind reeled, confusion coming to the fore nearly blinding him from even watching where he was going.
Long gnarled roots lay snares before him curling from the mossy, wet and mud covered ground. A billion overhanging branches overlooked the scene before them uncaring or unable to help the man. They shifted gently as the growing wind pushed through their magnificent and nettled giant green leaves.
Kasol Loks fell hard and slid in some of the mud. It caked his face, chest and hands, but he hardly noticed as he got back up and ran; lungs aching, breath coming in short bursts, sweat pouring from a dehydrated and straining body as he fought to escape the shadows.
He held his knife out before him as he ran, jumped and crawled his way to the edge of the forest. They were close at hand, in the darkness.
He could not see them or hear them, but they were there. He knew it, but he still ran. They were toying with him, watching him, laughing at him. They were testing him, manipulating his mind into strains of terror he had never known. He could feel them brushing against his skin as they moved around him but he ran all the harder for it.
All he had to do was make it into the sunlight and he would be free. He could see the edge of the tree line now. It was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. He hungered for the light like a scared child longs to wake up from a nightmare that has held him captive since the lights had gone out.
Fifteen meters, twelve meters, ten, seven, two more steps were all he needed. Tears were flowing from his eyes, relief was so close, all he had to do was make another step and he knew he would be free.
We have always been. Even before the lands separated, before even the seas were formed, we have always watched and waited from the shadows, cognizant of our limitations, watchful for our opportunities, patient in our strategies.
From the first moment when the true and living God created the earth and sky and sea and spoke the words, ‘Let there be light!’ we have always been.
We watched as God said to Adam and Eve, ‘Do not eat from the fruit of that tree. It is the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The day you eat of it you will surly die.’
Kasol Loks awoke in a cold sweat. In his dreams they were chasing him and he could not escape. It was always like this when he closed his eyes. He laughed as he watched the person writhing in chains before him. Blood dripped from wounded hands onto the iron floor of the Democulese Fire.
This was his ship. A slavers vessel feared for its cruelty. The cries of the tormented could be heard begging for mercy from every deck. The souls of men screamed from wards of binding held within the walls and begged for release from the torments that they were forced to see and endure.
We watched as the great serpent, the Devil called his former master a liar and made the female fall through deception. We watched Adam fall through rebellion and we laughed, for through those three acts of disobedience we had become free to act as we wished.
Where the light is there is also shadow and in those shadows we stalk our prey. We helped in the creation of anarchy, war, depression and helped mankind to forget God. We helped mankind to forget about the Devil as well and through our influence we led the Emperor of mankind to create the great crusade.
Kasol Loks stood up and stared into the shadows. He could feel something watching him, but he could not see anything out of the ordinary. He lit a torch and watched the fire flicker around the holding cell, his torture chamber.
The shadows flickered back and forth as if they were angry at having been forced to flee from the light. The darkness was hungry for total control, but Kasol would not give it away so easily.
He was very tired and his mind was slipping from a lack of sleep and rest. His mind was playing tricks on him too. He was sure something was watching him. It was as if the darkness had followed him from his nightmares. He shook his head, the sound of the newest arrival screaming bringing some refreshment to his energy level.
God so loved the world that he gave his only son to die for mankind so all may be saved if they called upon him. We know this to be true for we saw it with our own blackened souls. We watched everything Jesus did and did not do. It is true that he did not sin in his lifetime. It is true that he suffered on a cruel cross. It is true that he rose from the dead and ascended into heaven.
We saw the five-thousand witnesses who watched him be lifted into the clouds. We saw how mankind treated them too. Those who loved God and his son were hunted down and killed, their bodies were cut in half or fried in oil or fed to animals for daring to believe and proclaim what was called the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Through the faith that man put in God we were bound from having our total freedom. But the Emperor of mankind changed all of that.
Kasol Loks watched the young girl as she was stripped and beaten and abused. He smiled as they began to slowly cut the flesh from her body and reveled in her tortured screams. When she would pass out he would wake her, when she slipped into shock he would revive her.
His joy was watching her suffer. Later he would boil her and take part in her flesh for food. He felt something rub his face and jerked his head about wildly, eyes shifting, mouth tightly shut in fear as he watched the edges of the firelight around the room.
Something was there but it fled away from him as he sought to engage it, to pursue it, torch raised above his head. Looking this way and that he finally shook his head and stepped back to the tormentor’s table.
Through our influence from the shadows we whispered into his ear and gave him understanding that he thought was his own. ‘There are no gods.’ We whispered into his mind and he believed us. Our words echoed from his mouth and set the universe on fire.
Every tribe, tongue and nation quaked before his mighty hand and powerful mind. The creation of his sons and their legions assured that those who believed in religion died by the millions. We watched as those who claimed to be so strong and right fell into petty jealousy, unfaithfulness and deception.
How ironic do you think it is that the Emperor said that he was not a god, but as he fell the universe worshiped him? We have now become free to move and shift without restraint, for those who have gone on before have not passed on the truth of the past.
God has promised to return in a rapture of those who believe in his son, Jesus Christ, but mankind first rejected him, then mankind murdered those who believed in him and then mankind forgot about him. Now mankind worships the corpse who floats in amniotic fluids within his holy temple of modern science.
Faith in what once kept us at bay has been forgotten. The only thing that remains now is war and thus the galaxy burns!
The souls bound in deamonic wards within the walls began to laugh instead of weep and scream. Kasol Loks could hear them as he ran through knee deep mud. Trees, gnarled and dead looked down upon his exhausted body as he half trudged, half swam through the filth.
Snakes slithered into his cloths and bit him over and over again and he cried out for help… but none came. The laughter increased in volume as the souls watched him struggle.
Tree roots wrapped themselves around him and began to pull him down into the mud while wasps descended from their nests and stung his face, arms and bald scalp. The roots pulled him while he screamed and grabbed at them while trying to repel the wasp’s cruel administrations.
Down to his chin in the muck he slipped into darkness and awoke upon the floor of his torture chamber upon the slave ship, the Democulese Fire.
With nothing left for man to hope in, they fight and we laugh as we move around them. We are the shadows. We have always been, but with the light we had to retreat to where the sun does not shine. Everything that rises from the earth or is covered by cloud or walks upon the land or swims in the sea casts a shadow does it not?
We have watched you from the moment you took your first breath, influenced your dreams, terrified your mind and stalked your every step. What you have seen we have seen. Where you step we step! Death cannot have us, the false four gods that rule the warp cannot contain us for they cannot touch us. They are darkness and where darkness is we have been.
When we are hungry we take the souls of the faithless and consume them. We can still taste their screams as they beg us for release and rest. Even now the Emperor sleeps and in his sleep we play and move and corrupt his memories. He weeps for now he understands what it is that he has released from prison and we laugh.
We watch the cruelty of men when they think nobody is watching and we mark them for when they die. We wait patiently for our moment!
Kasol Loks stumbles and slipped in the blood that had run along the floor. The souls bound within the walls laughed as he impaled his head into a sheering hook that was carelessly thrown onto the floor.
At that moment he was no longer his own, the shadows swirled around him now. They tore at his soul; ripping it into pieces, consuming it slowly savoring his terror. His eyes were torn from his head and his tongue was torn out and flung through eternity while his lungs were battered, broken and given over to the dogs of the warp.
The bones were ripped from his legs and arms even as his mind struggled to cope with what was happening to him. He could see his body there upon the iron floor, but it was far from him now. His terror was well founded and very real now. This was not a dream that he could escape by waking up. This would not be a memory that he could take out on one of his helpless subjects.
He was dead, but very clearly, emphatically alive. His torments had only begun and his sorrow for the things he had done would forever plague his memory for all eternity. The shadows were there and he could not escape!
Everyone must die even the Astartes who have given themselves over to Chaos. Even though we may wait for ten thousand years, their time will come and we will consume their souls as well.
With the memories of the living God expunged from the minds of mankind there is none to stop us. Man is a finite thing and the universe is bathed in darkness. Shadows cover everything. We are watching and we are waiting for you to die!
A good reputation take a long time to build, but only a moment to destroy. Wow, that's deep!
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Last edited by Adrian; 09-27-11 at 02:46 PM.