Worst of the WickedSrpen 4, 2009
The Table of Darkness
In the forgotten Land of Chill lies a City of Ghrond. It is a place of pain and madness and it is there, that a huge tower of black iron rises into crimson skies to mock the Ruinous Powers.
At the very top of the tower one can find an ancient chamber, where enslaved deamons wail in agony to please its occupants. The room is enlightened by dozens of braziers filled with burning bones.
In a middle of this chamber is a table from dark metal, hidden in a shadow of huge statue of Malekith, the Witch King of Naggaroth. Not long ago, five creatures were sitting there. These five creatures were so terrible, that they made even Endless uneasy.
Anethera, Eldire, Arkaneth, Heshor and Adigha. Those five names were often used as curses by the novices of the Convent of the Sorceresses. These most powerful, treacherous, cunning, ancient and beautiful of the Brides of the Malekith were usually called Supreme Sorceresses.
For five thousand years they had controlled the fate of the Naggarothi, or so they believed. That night they met again in order bring more misery and depravity into the world.
Heshor eyed her wine-skull suspiciously. She did not had to be a sorceress to realize, that her wine was poisoned. To Void with that dwarf and his skaven allies! They had ruined her!
She had her own coven, black ark, N´Kari and the Harp of Doom! And now? She was so weak, that they even tried to poison her like some human dog!!!
Suddenly a tall door opened and the Hag Sorceress stepped into the chamber. All present ladies faded in her presence. She was utterly perfect. With grace Morathi took her place at the round table and raised her hand.
“Another year has passed and here we sit again, around the Table of Darkness, ready to bring doom to all who oppose us! For we are the Brides of Malekith, the rightful ruler of Ulthuan!!!”
“Yes we are!!!” answered the sorceresses and raised their arms toward the statue of their supreme master.
“Now reports. I expect pleasing news,” announced Morathi.
“The Asur are still weakened by your recent invasion, dread lady, and the dogs from the house Uthorin has served their purpose. Northern Ulhtuan is ours,” replied Arkaneth.
Heshor almost hissed in fury. That lying bitch! From her spies she knew about countless Asur holding many fortresses in that region. All thanks to that ridiculous rivalry between House Uthorin and House Arkaneth!
“My son has conquered the western regions! Whole Ulthuan trembles before the banners of Drachau Malus from Hag Graef!” reported Eldire with pride in her voice.
Dangerous sparks appeared in obsidian eyes of the Hag Sorceresses. Morathi was naturally aware of childish plot of Eldire, who was obviously trying to place her bastard on the throne of Naggaroth.
“The Empire of the men, crippled by the blow of Archaon, stands only little chance against the Cultists of Tzeentch. The Armies of the Changer of the Ways will soon be victorious,” said Adigha.
Adigha was a mystery to all except Morathi. With her azure eyes and white hair she looked like wretched Asur, yet she still managed to become a Supreme Sorceresses. She was charged with overseeing the dangerously multiplying humans in the Old World.
“The Chaos Wastes are still a source of great danger, but our priestesses managed to enslave most Hung tribes. Kurgans are still a threat of course, especially with the power of Tzeentch unchecked,” reported Heshor.
The responsibility for northern Watchtowers was a great burden and punishment for her recent failure. When Morathi learnt about destruction of black ark and the Harp of Doom, she personally tortured her once favorite apprentice for whole month, before letting her go with this unpleasant duty.
“The Temple of Khaine is getting out of control again,” announced Anethera. “With Yasmir around, Hellebron is barely able to maintain her position. Hag Queens are starting to divide into many fractions and their behavior is becoming unpredictable.”
Anethera was incredibly powerful matriarch of famous Helbane dynasty. As such she was a keeper of order in the Land of Chill. Her position was the most prominent one and every Supreme Sorceresses was hoping to crush that vile hag into a powder.
Great Morathi was silent for a moment. She hissed a command and one of the Endless opened the door. Beautiful she-slave of Asur origin came in with a brass plate.
The slave placed a cleaned skull before her mistress and poured wine into it. While tasting the drink, the Hag Sorceress stroked her slave and sent her away.
“The situation in both Ulthuan and Old World pleases me. We shall send more novices there to ensure success. We shall also manipulate Hellebron into waging war upon Kurgan tribes. Should she lead khainaties into a battle, she would regain the trust of other Hag Queens. Yasmir has to be locked up. If she was to become a Hag Queen, she would replace Hellebron and our influence over the Temple shall be no more,”
All present sorceresses humbly bowed before wisdom of their mistress. With the final decision made, the Supreme Sorceresses rose up. Endless guards brought them strange obsidian bowls filled with black liquid.
All six Supreme Sorceresses drank their share of the cursed water and then screamed in agony as countless visions filled their heads. Endless silently left the room.
The women meanwhile saw a massive vortex, which was spitting out the raw force of Chaos. Their minds flew over plains of bones, forests of guts and seas of fire to the domain of the Changer of the Ways.
When effects of the drug vanished, six Druchii sat back on their thrones around the table. Looking straight into darkest parts of the Realm of Chaos was exhausting even for Supreme Sorceresses.
“Tzeentch and his current minions are really dangerous this time. Heshor, I want you to take care of that strange albino-sorcerer we saw. He must die. I sense he is an enemy of that cursed dwarf who humiliated you,”
Heshor bit her lips as an image of that stinking trollslayer appeared before her eyes. She understood. Both Morathi and Cytharai gave her one last chance to avenge herself.
“Then I shall turn them against each other and destroy the winner of their feud,” suggested Heshor and a cruel smile played across her lips.
“Careful, sister,” warned her Adigha. “The string of fate curls strangely around this dwarf and his weapon. I sense he is protected by unknown power,”
She was giving her advises?! What an insult! That Ulthuanic slut…
“Your sister is right, my dear child, for that wretched creature really is surrounded by a will of some strange entity,” continued the Hag Sorceress. “And despite being human, that sorcerer of Tzeentch seems to be quite powerful too,”
“I saw a solution in my nightmare,” whispered Arkaneth. “I saw one of those damned grey seers of rat-people being numerously defeated by that hideous dwarf. He would made a formidable tool,”
Heshor was confused. Why were they helping her? Was this some kind of trick? Then she realized. They were afraid that she would lose her position! The Supreme Sorceresses knew each other for such a long time, that every one of them knew now what to expect from the others.
If Heshor was replaced by some ambitious young whore from the Convent, then other Supreme Sorceresses would have to deal with completely unknown threat. But why was her wine poisoned then?
“Then I shall leave, sisters, for I need to call upon raw storm of Chaos itself to wage destruction upon all our foes!” cried Heshor in ecstasy, still little drugged.
“Wait, sweet girl. Every one of us shall sent one of our most promising novices to help you on your noble quest,” declared Morathi.
Heshor swallowed heavily. So they intend to spy on her? It did not make any sense. What horror were they planning?
“As you wish, dread lady,” she nodded and left the chamber.