25. Persephone Eats Six Seeds

He’s gone when her water breaks. The pain yanks her into the open, impales her in her body and the cell around her. She’s bound, as always. The force is terrible — a series of rhythmic blows from the inside that warp her frame. It grips her by the nape, shakes her over and over, […]

22. You’re Too Valuable to Die

The scene at the Lavyryx farm is peaceful and quiet. The farmyard is overgrown, and parts of it have been trampled. The scouts from Liamelia made no particular effort to hide their tracks. The front door of the farmhouse is off its hinges, and the windows-glass is long-gone. Ajax and Inglorion exchange a glance. Inglorion […]

15. Charon of the Xyrec Army

Soon thereafter, Inglorion returns to his flat in Amakir late one night. He’s discouraged, itching with the undefined misery that he feels in Artemisia’s presence. He didn’t feel comfortable leaving her with servants, but he couldn’t force himself to stay. She was drunk but not to the point of illness, and seemed inclined to rest. […]

9. Private Joy and Common Sorrow

During this time, Inglorion settles into a respectable merchant area in Amakir, and sets up an intelligence operation from scratch. Ajax handles all the logistics and record-keeping, including arranging a courier system from the heart of Amakir to the nearest Drow egress point, and all the way down to Inglorion’s household in the Theates district […]

7. The Magnificent Five: Ajax

Delightful as it may be to linger over Inglorion’s sentimental adventures, it’s time to turn our attention to the second of the Magnificent Five, Ajax. In these pages, we have referred to Ajax as Inglorion’s Drow slave and valet. When Inglorion recklessly exposed himself to a massive dose of spider venom, Ajax nursed him through […]

59. Not Yet Wise or Predictable

Soundtrack and Video: Talking Heads, Burning Down the House (Live 1984) The Duchess has been there all along, within earshot but apparently absorbed in a report. Inglorion walks over and stands within her field of view, waiting to be recognized. For a long, uncomfortable moment, she refuses to notice him. During that moment, a sick, […]

58. The Last Trial: Kicking the Hornet’s Nest

Soundtrack and Video: Talking Heads, Once in a Lifetime (Live 1983) Two days after his meeting with the Duchess, Inglorion is jolted out of trance. Ajax says, “You’re to go to the Duchess immediately, sir. It’s the last trial.” “Hm. Okay. What time is it?” “Just past midnight, sir.” “Very well. The throne room?” “Yes, […]