(OOC NOTE: Just a story about my Platinum Character, Thresher. Excuse typos or mispellings, I wrote it at 3AM hah! Its when I do my best work)
Thresher walked the streets of Duskruin, his hand firmly on his purse as he idly scanned the crowd. The hustle and bustle had been going on since before sunrise. From his room above the tavern, the Paladin had observed the merchants setting up there wares under the soft grey of pre-dawn. As soon as the sun crested the horizon and the light touched the stalls, people had begun to flood the streets. He had watched them from his window, eyes observing how the crowd flowed like a river.
Now he was among them, caught up in the current. Even in this crowded, bustling place however people avoided him. The crowd would jostle each other but seemed to part about him as if he were a stone...which, truth be told, is how he felt. Cold. Dead. Lifeless. Without purpose.
He had been to many of the great cities of Elanthia these past few years. He had made the dangerous journey over the Dragonspire mountains. Seeking the call of his God. He had felt it so keenly at first. He remembered the pull of it, the purity, the PURPOSE. The voice he had heard but a handful of times...not a voice you hear with your ears, nor in your mind...but one that spoke to the heart. It had led him to the Landing during those dark times, and whilst he was unsure what purposes his God had, he felt that there was where he would begin.
Then...the silence. What had filled his entire being...gone. And it was his fault. He knew what he was called to do. He worshipped Marlu...Cleanser of Worlds...bringer of peace through destruction. The one who would tear out the corruption of this current existence and replace it with purity. He knew that before the reshaping needs come the fire.
Why had he not struck?
He had stood over the man, the boy really...the one whose life Marlu had called on to be Forfeit. He had every opportunity to strike down and end him...and he had not. The boy lay before him heaving and panting, bloody from the wounds of their duel. And Thresher, named so by his God for what he had been called to do, had just stood there.
From that moment, he had been empty. Devoid. What had filled him and fueled him...gone.
He had sought to repent of his misdeed, but the boy had fled the town. No one knew where he had gone...and still, Marlu had not seen fit to explain to him why the boy needed to die. Death was a mercy...this Thresher knew better than most...and he had refused to impart it upon the poor lad.
Exhaling softly, the paladin continued to trudge through the cobbled streets, exhausted emotionally. Since that fateful day he had gone from town to town, preaching the words he had been taught and that he knew to be true...but few listened. Here and there he ran into the Prepared. Families who had nothing, women whom had been broken and beaten and abused, men who had lost everything... such experiences had softened their hearts and made them receptive to the truth. They had given themselves freely, and Thresher had given them the Gift of his God. It gave him a small measure of joy to do so, but again...he still felt empty.
Why had he not struck?
The smells of the bazaar wafted through the air, perfumes from varied lands mixed with the pungent odor of roasted meat. Thresher sneered as the roar from the Arena rose to a crescendo briefly. Another life lost in their abominable 'games'. It was a perversion of the purity of Destruction. He had attended, simply to ascertain the nature of what it was they did...but it was just bloodlust, entertainment for the crowds. Blasphemy! It was such things that reaffirmed his belief in the need for the Cleansing. Such things needed to be done away with, and as always...the only way was the way of the flame.
As he walked, he noticed a line of slaves being led into arena. Creatures of all kinds, chained and forced to fight for the entertainment of others. The crack of the whip and laughter of the slavers offended him and his hand briefly drifted to the hilt of his weapon...but, sighing, Thresher withdrew it. Now was not the time...and even if he were to kill these slavers, there would be more to take their place. He would fall and he would be wasted.
It was as his mind contemplated the idea of drawing and going down in a blaze of glory that he saw him.
The boy, from years ago.
No longer some ruffian, bone thin and unkempt. No no, the boy had grown into a man. And a successful one, if his rainment were any indication. Bands of gold glittered on his fingers as he laughed heartily, his satin, silver trimmed cape dragging as he walked with several Arena officials and merchants. Unable to believe what he was seeing, Thresher edged closer, listening.
As the group of very official and wealthy looking men talked, Thresher despaired. Like lightning, revelation struck. The boy, now a man, was the one who had arranged the Arena and its 'shows'. After their dual, he had fled to Duskruin and somehow risen to power and influence. There he had brutally taken over the local slavers guild and extended their influence in the city ten fold. He had arranged for the enslavement and slaughter of THOUSANDS.
Thresher dropped to his knees and moaned, the passers by glaring at him askance as they hurried to go around him. One sneered and kicked out at him, swearing "Watch where you go, cur! Filthy beast...get off our streets!" But he barely heard. Thresher knew his sin. He had erred, greatly. The so called 'mercy' he had granted that boy, those years ago. Look at what he had wrought! The suffering...he felt it keen as a dagger to the heart. The roar of the Arena observers rose again, and like a dark tide it washed over him.
Barely able to think, Thresher wept openly as he stumbled to his feet. He fled. He did not know where, he could not think. More shouts and yells as he pushed his way through the crowd blindly, shame overcoming him and what he had done...what his inaction had cost.
Minutes...hours...days later...he could not say, he found himself in storefront. The shop, in stark contrast to the streets, was empty...desolate of the push of humanity that swarmed outside. The shelves were dusty and full of odds and ends. Artifacts, antiques...things that Thresher could not begin to even guess at their use. He had calmed some, but sobs still wracked him. The storekeep gave him a bored glance, and went back to perusing the leathery tome before him.
Wiping his eyes, he tried to regain his bearing. It would not do for people to see him in such a state. He was still a representative of his Order, though he felt seperated from his God. As he adjusted his armor, rechecked his purse and was about to leave, a pair of bright teal gloves fell fromt he shelf. Frowning, Thresher bent to pick them up and as his hands touched the fabric a voice whisper in his mind
Thresher blinked and dropped the offending object. What...what was that? That voice...so familiar. Tentatively, gently, Thresher reached out again.
"My son...hear me..."
Thresher gasped aloud and the shopkeeper shot him another annoyed glance. "Best make sure you pay for that, or I'll call the guard!" he threatened. Thresher nodded hurriedly and threw his pouch of scrip on the counter as he made his way out into the streets.
His heart pounded as he made his way into his room above the tavern and he took the Gloves from his satchel and lay them on the bed. Ensuring the door was bolted, he shut the windows and the blinds and he turned to the bed. Fear played across his features, but a hidden hope had grabbed his heart and would not be outdone by such a pitiful emotion as fear. Grimacing, he grabbed the gloves and felt the sense of 'other' so very, very strong.
"My son...hear me...become one with me..."
Trembling, he reverently pulled the gloves over his bare hands. Immediately he gasped as tentacles slid out and pierced his skin, sliding into his veins, drawing at his essence. But the pain was nothing compared to the rapture he felt as he heard the voice of his God. Thresher wept openly and without shame. Tears fell on the cotton sheets as he once again was filled with Purpose. Never again would he stray from it.
And as tentacles pulsated and drew from him, an alien voice whispering in his mind, telling him what he must do... Thresher knew he need not have feared.
He would never be alone again.