THE SORCERER RHINE, FOUND EVIL SPELL BOOK HE HAD BEEN SEARCHING FOR IN A DECAYING CASTLE. After spending many days attempting to open the book, he succeeded only to discover it full of kitchen maids. He quickly grew irate at their screeching outrage. Wart watched the sorcerer loose his temper.
"Impertinent, tiresome wenches. I've released you from imprisonment-and do you thank me? Quiet!" the sorcerer shouted.
The rising screech of the kitchen maids snapped off, like a stick broken in two. Wart shrank further into their midst, doing her best amidst the breasts, aprons, and elbows to remain small and unnoticed. In the gloom, the sorcerer's face was a forbidding mask outlining his forehead, cheeks, and long aristocratic nose, but his eyes remained two shadowy pits of darkness. She held her breath transfixed.
"See his hair?" Kath said to her in a loud whisper that rang out in the silence. "It's fake, innit?"
"Don't do that," she breathed to Kath. "Don't make him mad."
She gulped, feeling the push of his magical power spread out over them, releasing an immense cascade of blue sparks across the vast hall. Spitting sparks popped and overflowed from the sconces, they crackled across the hall floor, illuminating the room all the way up to the vaulted ceiling, which had been scorched by magic fire until it was black like the inside of an old kettle.
Meanwhile, at the sorcerer's feet lay that horrid spell book. Smoke gently curled upwards from its greasy pages and she shuddered, chills crawling from her elbows up her arms. The castle apprentice had tried to burn the Rhymaeic spell book - but it would not burn. Instead the book sent shooting flames from the fireplace out into the room and slowly consumed the castle. Her last recollection was of running down the hall as two arms of blue flame snatched her. She screamed and writhed, dragged back into the flames, which were burned with cold. Dragged into the smoke and downwards, until she was in a strange place full of yellowish fog. The castle had disappeared, the other maids had disappeared. All she saw were writhing shapes in the distance, and everything stank of sulfur.
Through the yellowish putrid stink, she walked endlessly until suddenly a hand had grabbed her on the back of her neck and pulled her up. She struggled in vain, only to find herself right back in the same castle as before. Yet now every available surface was covered in the stinking smell of smoke, sulfur, and soot.
"I've warned you we must leave this place immediately," he said, with a glance up as another trickle of dust fell from the ceiling and the beams cracked in an ominous way. He turned his shadowed eyes upon them all. "Do you listen? You do not. You call me tyrant, and-and-now you dare to mock my hair." His voice took on a tone of menace.
"Be grateful I knew how to get you out of that damned spell book," he said, "For if I knew how to get you all back in again, I'd be sorely tempted."
YOU ARE READING
Elspeth witnesses Rhine the sorcerer enthralled by a wicked enchantress. The only way to save him is by becoming an enchantress herself to break the spell. She owes him her life, she pines for him, and when she discovers him half-naked and locked...