Well, it is March 28th, and today I am sharing the third/second chapter of my King's Quest epic, Revenge of the Dark Cloak Society. This actually marks the halfway point of the first arc, in which Dahlia, the evil witch featured in the first game (although unnamed until a later point), returns to power in Daventry, and attempts revenge. As with all prior posts, I hope you are enjoying this series so far.
|King's Quest Disclaimer|
Attention: King’s Quest is property of Sierra. Most character names are also from the King’s Quest Companion by Peter Spear. Some characters are my creation. This story also takes place after all eight King’s Quest games.
Revenge of the Black Cloak Society
|Prior Chapters and Arcs|
|Prelude||A Shadow Enters Daventry|
|Previous Chapter||Wickedly Sweet|
Chapter 2: Dark Sacrifice
Anne couldn’t believe where the handsome stranger was taking her. The longer they walked, the deeper in the woods they had gotten. Not many people dared to venture this far in the forest. The reason for this was that no one had forgotten the days when monsters had roamed the woods. She had heard stories about some of the creatures in the woods. Her father had even told her about some of those creatures.
The first had been an ogre, that her father had seen years ago. There had been rumors that the creature had clubbed many people who had entered the woods to death. Of course that was many years ago, and no one had mentioned seeing it since then.
Then there was a thieving dwarf. He had disappeared after King Graham had become King, but her father had said that many people had lost stuff. It was odd for a dwarf to be a thief, since a majority of them worked underground, forging weapons and armor, or mining ore.
There even had been a sorcerer roaming around the woods in the old days, paralyzing people so they would be easy prey for the wolf. Her father had said the wolf was magical and ate whole people. When she thought about this, she glanced at the stranger who was leading her. It calmed all her worries, because she knew he wouldn’t let any harm come to her.
As they walked, she felt a tingling sensation overcome her, like she had walked through something. She looked around for a moment, to see what it had been, but saw nothing. She then glanced in the direction they were heading, and saw a house. She wondered why she didn’t know about this place, and the saw it more clearly. It looked like it was made of gingerbread, and she started to feel scared. Another of her father’s stories was having seen the house of the witch, Dahlia.
She wanted to turn around and head home. It wasn’t safe to be here. She looked at the stranger, and said, “We can’t go there. It’s a place of evil. It isn’t safe.” She started to turn, scared that some essence of the witch was still around.
She felt a hand on her shoulder, and turned to see it was the stranger. She looked right in his eyes, and she felt calm and relaxed again. “It’s alright. It’s safe.” She suddenly felt relieved and followed him into the place.
As they entered, she looked around the place, seeing a huge cauldron in the fireplace, and cell farthest away from the door. She also noticed a black cat looking straight at her, but it didn’t scare her. She started feeling like she needed to be here. It was then she saw the man in a dark cloak standing there. He appeared young, but held himself like he had been around for years.
She then saw his eyes, and couldn’t help but think that anything he asked, she would do. The eyes made her want to obey whatever he said, and before he even said anything, she looked at him and said, “What do you need me to do, Master.” It seemed the right thing to say, because she knew this was why she was here at this time.
Brutus watched as the girl he had brought to the house of Dahlia, spoke to the cloaked man. As he watched, he remembered that he had seen the man before, back when the man had entered Daventry. Of course, he wasn’t entirely sure what was going on, but he didn’t care. He had remembered mention of a reward for completing the task. He was first worried but what he did wasn’t kidnapping. The girl had followed him willingly. He then watched, puzzled by the girl’s words when she had spoken. The cloaked man, however, smiled at her words and said to her, “Go into the next room, and lie on the bed in there. You look a bit tired, and when you arise, you’ll feel like a brand new person.”
He watched in awe as the girl walked into the next room. He started to wonder if the dark cloaked man had something up his sleeve. Again, he remembered the reward and the thoughts left his mind as he said, “I’ve done what you ask. I was told their was a reward.”
He then watched as a black cat jumped onto the table. He remembered the cat had said something before, and wasn’t surprised when it said, “I told him that you would give him a reward, Master Shadrack. I’m sure you have a perfect one in mind.”
He started to feel unnerved as the man smiled. It was a smile that radiated evil. He then watched as the man held out a stick, and saw it glow. “Of course. He will receive a reward for helping his master, Shadrack.”
He then felt his body start to walk toward the cage in the back of the room. As he moved, he also saw the cage open. He wanted to stop himself from moving, but couldn’t. It was a nightmare. He couldn’t be moving towards the cage.
It got worse as he realized he was nearing the table, and a small cauldron was on the table. He also saw the cloaked man nearing the table with a knife in the hand not holding the stick. As he passed the cauldron, he felt the knife cut him. He yelled in pain as his body then moved quickly towards the cage.
When he finally reached the cage, he grabbed his arm with his hand. He wanted to stop the bleeding. He then spun around, just in time to see the cage close. He looked out, and started to wonder what all had happened. It was like he had been asleep the past few days.
He then looked at the man again, and he remembered. He had tried to rob the man when he entered Daventry. He looked around, and realized how dangerous the situation was. He wasn’t sure where he was, but he was sure it wasn’t good. “What is going on here? How did I get here?”
He watched as the man continued putting stuff in the cauldron, which included blood dripping off a knife. He then remembered that his arm was bleeding. As he looked at it, he heard the cloaked man speak. “I must thank you again for helping me find Dahlia’s home. My associate said that the note had gotten ruined, which was why he had to tell you what to do.” As he heard those words, he looked up, and saw the cat looking at him, almost grinning.
He then felt fear as he realized where he was. This was the home of the witch Dahlia. The cloaked man then said, “Almost a quarter of a century ago, Graham destroyed her by pushing her into that cauldron in the fireplace. She was a friend of mine, and a member of the Black Cloak Society. This spell, which requires blood, and a chaste vessel to contain her spirit, will bring her back. Once she is back, I’ll let her reward you.” He then watched as the man continued what he was doing. Brutus then stepped away from the bars, realizing the dire situation he was in. He then closed his eyes, and began to pray.
Shadrack continued working on the spell. As he continued chanting, he notice that the sky was darkening outside. It was part of the spell to revive Dahlia. He continued holding the knife over the cauldron. It was a spell he had used once before, to revive another member of the Black Cloak Society. However, back then, he had done to revive a traitor to the group. He needed to be sure all the man’s secrets had been revealed, and make sure the spirit couldn’t divulge information.
Now, he just waited for the lightning to revive Dahlia. He realized that the bandit had gone quiet, but that didn’t bother him. Once Dahlia was revived, the bandit wouldn’t be a problem. Of course, the bandit would deliver a message after she was revived. The fact that the bandit wouldn’t be alive for it didn’t bother him.
Soon, he heard thunder outside. It was a sign that the spell was almost complete. All he needed was the lightning. Of course, that was the risky part. Anyone who had cast this spell wrong had ended up dead when the lightning struck. If he wasn’t as powerful as he was, he might be concerned, but he was Shadrack, and his dark powers had been around for many years.
That thought had gone through his mind as he saw the lightning strike come in through the chimney. As it appeared, it connected with the knife, and jumped down to the cauldron, while at the same time, went into the bedroom. He continued the spell, speaking its old words. It was almost in an instant when he heard the maiden scream.
It was the scream of one’s soul being ripped out of them. That wasn’t what the spell did, but it was a close approximation. The spell actually imprisoned the soul of the person inside them, and then the next soul took over, making the captive soul a part of it. If the spell wasn’t reversed in a few hours, it would be irreversible.
Soon, the lightning stopped, and he turned to face the door to the bedroom chamber. There was smoke billowing out of the bedroom, and he smiled. He then heard the bandit who had become his pawn shout, “You’ve set the place on fire. We are going to burn.”
He ignored the man’s cries, but smiled when a figure came out of the smoke. It was the form of the maiden, but her skin now had a greenish hue to it. “Welcome back to the land of the living, Dahlia.”
He was glad when the figure walked over to him, and gave him a sneer. “It took you long enough, Brother Shadrack. I’ve been floating in limbo for twenty-five years. If you had taken any longer, my spirit would have been in one of the Realms of the Dead.”
He smiled and said, “I wasn’t fully aware of what had happened to you. Besides, many of our most powerful members have either been stopped or ceased having a body. Now, I need your help to bring down the ones who stopped them.”
He smiled when Dahlia laughed. “I like that. I would love the chance to do to Graham what he did to me. However, I need to get back into the swing of things, and get used to this new body.” He then watched as tore at her dress, lowering the collar of the dress she was wearing. She then looked over at the cage. “Who’s the man?”
Shadrack smiled. “He helped restore you. I’m sure you have a fitting reward for him. I need to return to my cover, so I’ll leave you to the task.” He then turned towards the man and smiled. He knew what Dahlia would do. He then turned to Mannanan and said, “Make sure she sends the first cookie to the town of Daventy. I’m sure they will love to see that Dahlia is back.” He then left the place, and headed back for the castle. He wanted to be back for when the cookie arrived, as well as the other dark forces from the time of Dahlia’s defeat.
Geoffory walked through the town of Daventry. It was part of his usually routine as one of the kingdom’s guards. Every day, he walked through the town and kept an eye out from criminals. Most days were uneventful, but something told him today would be different. If something happened, he hoped it would be something small, especially with the dark clouds appearing over the forest.
When he glanced at them, he felt a feeling of dread enter into him. The way the clouds had suddenly appeared didn’t set well with him, as well as the fact that the clouds appeared over the forest. It was known to almost everyone in Daventry that the forest had hidden in it the house of Dahlia. He had been a little boy when she had finally been defeated, but the stories of her followers still worried him.
He was brought out of those thoughts when he heard one of the villages call him. He turned to see it had been Meridith Clark, who had befriended on his rounds. “Good day, Meridith. What is wrong that you look so upset?”
She gave him a worried look before she finally said, “My daughter, Anne, hasn’t come home yet. With that storm that has appeared, I’m getting worried. I fear something might happened to her.” He could see tears starting to come down her face as she said, “Please, find her.”
He put his hand on the woman’s shoulder. “Don’t worry. I’ll take a look around, and see if I can find her. She’s probably talking with one of her friends.” He then started to walk around town, keeping an eye out for the lost girl. He glanced over at the storm, and wondered how it had come on so suddenly. He also noted that it seemed to be right over the deep forest. Graham had forbidden anyone from going into the deep forest, since that was apparently were Dahlia’s home was.
As he continued his rounds, he neared the part of town that was right near the forest. He had seen a group of people all standing around something, talking. He felt hope that the missing girl was in the group of people. However, something about the scene also put him on alert.
He walked over to the group. “Step aside. The guard is here. If Anne is here, you should head home.” As he made his way through the group, he gently nudged people aside. When he finally reached what they were looking at, he froze.
It looked like a giant cookie, but that wasn’t what made him stop. It was the fact that it looked like a man he knew that struck him. He then heard another person say, “It looks like Brutus, but he hasn’t been around in days.”
He quickly neared the cookie, and said, “Everyone, back to your homes.” He then shouted to a fellow guard who was coming over. “James, bring a cart. We need to get this to the castle.” He watched the other guard nod, and then head back towards the guard post. He then looked at the cookie, and saw a sheet of paper on it. As he looked at it, he felt his blood run cold. “King Graham is not going to like this.” He then prepared to take the cookie to Castle Daventry.
Chrispin entered the throne room after he had noticed the clouds over the forest. Their sudden appearance struck him as a dark sign. Evil magic was at work. He had gotten there just to see Graham and Valanice talking, most likely about the upcoming wedding of Rosella. As he neared them, he saw Graham look at him. “Chrispin, we could use your opinion on something. We were just trying to figure out what to give Rosella for her wedding.”
Chrispin shook his head and said, “I wish we could devote more time to that, but I feel something is up. Dark clouds have appeared over the forest, and I feel that something evil is coming.”
He watch as both Graham and Valanice look scared. Valanice then said, “Don’t say that someone threatens our daughter’s wedding? That would be a disaster not only for Daventy, but for Eldrich as well.”
He was about to say that he wasn’t sure, when he heard Cale Silver, the new historian run in. “Sire, Sire. I’ve just seen something odd being brought in by the guards. I don’t know how to describe it.”
He saw Graham get off of his throne. “What was it? A creature they had captured. Some sort of odd item.” He could tell by Graham’s tone that the King was visibly worried. He wondered if the fact that the dark clouds were over the forest meant something to the king.
It was then that the door at the far end of the hall opened, and two guards carried in something. As they neared, the one guard said, “Sire, I found this in the town at the edge of the forest. It’s a giant cookie, which looks like one of the townsmen. It came with a note.”
He watched as Graham froze at the sight, and then said, “What did the note say?”
The guard held up a paper. “Graham of Daventy. I have returned, thanks to my fellow Black Cloak brother, Shadrack. Soon, my minions will return, and all your kingdom will end up wiped out. Dahlia of the Black Cloak Society.” He then watched as the guard rolled up the letter. “Also, Sire, a young girl by the name of Anne Clark disappeared earlier.”
Chrispin turned towards Graham, and saw a look of dread crossing the monarch’s face. He could understand why. The leader of the Black Cloak Society had gotten into Daventry, and had revived the witch that had terrorized the kingdom of Daventry long ago.
Finally, the King said, “Round up all the knights, and start searching the forest. We need to find Dahlia’s home. We need to find her before the dark creatures start appearing. She may even have this girl in her clutches. If we are lucky, we can save her from the same fate as the man who is now a cookie.”
Crispin watched as the guards nodded, and left the room, leaving the cookie behind. He looked at the King and Queen and said, “I’ll start scrying for Shadrack, and looking for a spell to stop Dahlia. I don’t think it would be wise to use the same trick on her as last time.” He then left the throne room, wanting to find the cause of the problem. As he passed the one window in the hall, he glanced out at the forest, and froze. Even though his eyes were old, he could see a figure on a broomstick rising out of the forest, under the clouds. As he continued to gaze, he could tell that the figure on the broomstick was young, and he realized what might have happened to the girl. He now planned to include in his search a spell to free the girl from her fate.
|Next Chapter||The Forest Darkens|
|Following Chapters and Story Arcs|
|Library Page||RichGenX's Library - Revenge of the Black Cloak Society|