Through the window of his flame-proof dressing tank, Malric saw the hustle and bustle of Gloridax attendants and knew the time of battle had come. His opponent was ready to face the fire, though no doubt shaking with fear.
Malric had convinced the gullible Gloridax nobles that he could only truly prepare for battle while wearing his fire body. It was quite easier for everyone if he simply remained in his Efreet form, but his desire to push the Dragonfolk to their extravagant limits had earned him some impressive amenities at the arena. Malric Inferno was a champion summoner after all, and champions were granted measures of glory. Such is the Gloridax way.
Malric Inferno scoffed at the Gloridax notion of glory. They were gilded fools to his eyes, meant only to be wringed for everything they contained. He enjoyed the fear in their eyes as they beheld him in his fire body. He relished in the extreme accommodations they had made simply because he had won a few tournaments.
As he gazed down at his hands of fire, Malric remembered the night so many years ago that he had become one with the Flame of Everlast. The trails of the ancient ones had led him deep into a forgotten cave, where he had wandered for days, lost but determined. Near dead and far from home, the Flame had finally found and spared Malric, infusing within him a new form, a body of fire with incredible powers.
That was all long ago. Now it was time to play in the Gloridax charade. The rewards (and intelligence) he would return to the Torch would be invaluable win or lose, but Malric was certain he would win. As a frightened Gloridax guard looked inquisitively through the tank window, Malric quickly thought the series of mantras that always ease him back to his Efreet form. Before the guard’s eyes, Malric transformed into a handsome humanoid and all traces of flame vanished from his body. The guard was clearly struck with awe.
The door was opened, and Malric Inferno was ushered by what seemed like the entire Gloridax fire brigade toward the great iron gate. He had done them a favor by transforming before leaving his dressing area. For fire-breathing Dragon-lovers, it was surprising how much the fools feared a spark. He would have to change back in order to summon, but that could be a grand show in front of the entire Mount Mox crowd. It would give them something to talk about until the next tournament. Maybe then, Malric would ask for a fountain of lava. The Gloridax would probably provide one.
The great iron gate was opened, and Malric Inferno strode onto the arena floor with all the pride of an Efreet nobleman. On the other side, clouds of black smoke obscured the summoner’s approach. Black smoke could only mean one thing.
As if someone was reading his thoughts, the black smoke cleared at that exact moment Malric realized. There in the clearing stood Zintar Mortalis, the infamous Dark Sorcerer. Malric had always known the time would come. He tried to remind himself that this thing was only a mere shadow of the person that came before it.
Malric’s limbs were already beginning to burn as he stepped up to the stone summoner’s table to face his long lost brother in combat.
Written by Chris Roberts, Lore Master
Original Steem Post @steemmonsters