Part VI: Juicy
Ardath sat on his throne of bones, onyx, obsidian and darkness. He ruled the Abyss, a place of his own creation, and he smiled.
Ardath had once been a God. He had been the God of Darkness and the guardian of the souls lost in it, but he had found it tedious. He was one of many brothers who served with the Death family, but he felt they were wasted in their place. They were Immortal yet they chose to protect, to guard, to guide mortals. MORTALS!
It was a waste of their power. They should take, consume and rule the mortals, not be glorified servants to them.
He devised a plan and soon he began amassing an army of souls, stashing them in the darkness rather than guiding them out.
Soon, he took the elements and corrupted them, most especially fire, and used it to torture and scorch the souls he held imprisoned. As he formed energy from the souls, he molded the darkness to his desires and built the Abyss. His kingdom.
He made the souls into warriors and started a battle with Death, if he won, he could claim Death his and would have all the souls of the dead to empower him.
With Gods, there were two main ways for them to be empowered. The faith of their followers and the souls amassed within the light. Within the Lightlands Beyond the Veil, there were many, many lands. Each faithful follower of a God resided in the place reserved for them.
That was what Death and his family did escorted the souls Beyond the Veil and their trials to be sure they made it to their proper place in the Lightlands.
Ardath violated all those rules and began a war against the Gods, especially Grimmear and his family. Grimmear was the name Death originally held, but as time passed his followers imply called him Death and the name Grimmear faded into obscurity.
Ardath was beaten back, unable to overcome Grimmear and his brothers. Mortis and Khaeron were chief in stopping Ardath in his first assault.
He retreated, leaving the tortured soul behind as fodder. Twisted and evil they were nothing more than fire and darkness screaming in agony, wanting nothing but blood and gore to feed on and stop the pain.
Ardath, back in his new kingdom, knew he needed more. He devised a plan to make an even greater army. The souls he held in reserve, he took things from all of creation and he combined them with the souls. And thus he created demons.
He knew he would need more souls, but he had been cut off access from the lost souls in the darkness.
So he devised a new plan. He would release magic, the power of the God’s, into the world. He released the power of the darkness and his corruption of it, and he guided the corruption of the elements in the real world.
He released the power to control the dead, to reanimate them, to make more of them. As he did, he made witches, sorcerers and those who could serve him. He gained followers and he rewarded them. Their faith fed his power and they helped him gain souls and those souls became soldiers.
The second assault was made when a gate to the Veil was opened. This war was bloody and long.
Those who opposed to Ardath were Solariel; God of the Sun and the Light, Protector of the Lightlands, Chief of the Angels. His brother, Elestiel, God of Protection, Protector and Guardian of Mortals, Chief of the Guardian Angels. And Ahriman, Protector of the Celestial Bodies.
They fought long and hard and pushed back Ardath and his abominations. Ardath even released monsters upon the land to kill, consume and cover the world in darkness.
The war took its toll on them all, but Ahriman was affected the worst. Ardath lead an attack against Ahriman and his angels and soon he convinced Ahriman that Maykapal and his brothers weren’t fighting. They were using Ahriman to fight the entire war. Ahriman became angry and was convinced to turn on his brothers.
He fought against Solariel and Elestiel, but they were more than Ahriman could fight, even allied with Ardath. Ahriman knew what he could do to defeat them, and released the power from the Void of the Cosmos.
He fought them and was winning until Maykapal himself stepped in to stop him. Maykapal was injured in the battle, but Ahriman was destroyed and the Void closed. Though many unknown horrors escaped into the known universes.
The Ahrimanes, the name given to the angels that joined Ardath but failed, retreated to the Abyss.
Now Ardath plotted and ruled from the Abyss and from the Hellfire pits where he tortured his souls.
Before him, the first witch, Tabitha, fed the heart of an angel to Talamar. Talamar knelt in a circle of glowing red sigils and groaned in ecstasy.
“Good, Talamar. You have done well. Soon you will join Anbiru and Tabitha as some of my most powerful agents.”
Tabitha then had him drink from a black chalice, and fed him another heart.