The Story of Seryth, Chapters 29 through to the Epilogue

Chapter 36: "Don't do it!" came a shout from behind him, a man's shout, which he knew well. Seryth tried to turn, but it was as if the shards forming around him had solidified, encasing him in a statue of obsidian. The pit fiend's ghost vanished with an angry hiss, and the nathrezim reared back, spreading its wings. Four quel'dorei sprang from one of the side openings of the chamber. Jalinde was wreathed in lightning, the power of nature coursing through and around her. Beside her were the forms of Daelin and Fordrellon, wreathed in smoke. The fourth...the fourth Seryth couldn't recognize, except that he had dusky-purple skin, like Seryth's own.

Druids, subjugated demons, Farstriders, paladins, farmers and warlocks poured from the opening behind the four quel’dorei. The nathrezim seemed to grow, becoming a mountain of fel filling in the chamber, its attackers chipping away at it zealously like miners instead of like warriors.

Still Seryth struggled to move. He was angry — how dare the others steal his moment of glory! How dare they stop him from melding with the pit fiend, so becoming the mighty overlord of Azeroth!

How dare they…

The nathrezim gave a great shake and whirl, sending bodies flying. One crashed into Seryth, and the uncertain bond between the shards cracked. He could move again.

The ghostly blade of Nathssysn formed ahead of him. Seryth reached for it again.

“Remember who you really are!” cried Fordrellon, diving to come between Seryth and the blade. Behind him, Daelin just gave Seryth a sad look, but as a father knows his son, he knew Seryth wouldn’t stop to listen to him.

A burst of arcane and nature magic exploded on the nathrezim’s right wingtip, courtesy of Jalinde channeling her magic together with the archdruid bear, and the gargantuan demon skidded and crashed into the side of the chamber as it lost control of its flight. Dust shook from the ceiling, and two pillars on the far side of the chamber cracked with the sharp sound of the earth’s bones breaking.

Seryth kicked Fordrellon out of the way, the power of the blade flowing through him and blasting through the paladin’s enchanted armor. He could feel through his foot that the paladin was real, but he had no time to process how he had escaped the green dragons’ breath. He seized the Nathssysn’s hilt.

The last thing he saw was the pit fiend grinning upfront of him, the last thing he heard was Jalinde’s devastated cry, and the third to last thing he felt was something wrenching free from his chest.

The second to last thing he felt was his hands vibrating until they went numb as he drove the blade of Nathssysn through his intended target. The very last thing he felt was the blood trickling down his back as the pillars crumbled entirely under the magical edge of the demon blade, and free of its foundations, the roof came down on the nathrezim.

Seryth trusted Fordrellon would see the rest of the army out safely. He was a stolid man, a paladin with a good heart. Daelin would take Jalinde in hand, nurturing her through the last months of her pregnancy and the first months of a new life in her arms. Seryth had sensed it, just a glimmer, as he picked up the blade and felt its hunger for all living things within its ken, including his only son. He felt terrible for the manner in which he had gifted that life unto Jalinde, but like the grell and their rebellious imp counterparts, he trusted the wildness of nature would survive any evil taint and see mother and child through their future struggles.

He also was able to forgive his father — both foster and the real one — in that moment. His last thought was to wonder at the fourth quel’dorei he saw, the one so much like him.

Had it been? Could it be…

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