Chapter 5

Recorded by Scribe Shagac

After the fall of his Shadows, the great Emperor Calus, Master of Celebrations, Patron of Festivity, stood in the throne room of his great ship. The Golden King's shining, mottled brow was furrowed with a deep melancholy, and the beauty of his face was marred by a frown.

Dominus Ghaul, the Ghost Primus, the Usurper, lived, while the mightiest of his Shadows, his Chosen Killers, his Zenith Champions, were dead.

When approached by one of his Advisors, who hoped to console the Emperor, the Emperor held up his great hand and said, bewildered,

"I have failed them.

"I have been chosen to bring forth the end of the world, and I set my sights so low as petty revenge. My enemies deserved to suffer and fall for their treachery, but my Shadows were meant for something greater than the violent end I sent them to. They have been ruined, just like my beloved Empire."

Here his Advisors rushed eagerly to reassure him, troubling him with offers of wine or food or false words of comfort, but the great Emperor was not moved.

What, they asked timidly, of rest of his Shadows? Those who had not gone to fight Ghaul? They still lived.

"No, I have ruined them, all of them," the great Emperor whispered. "I've spoiled the whole batch."