A blast of electrical energy engulfs Faisal, draining the last of his flagging strength. As the flaming blade drops from his nerveless fingers and the ring of blackness closes upon his vision for the second time in a month, the warrior sees the demon sorceress torn apart by the death throes of her own construct.
I have done my duty. She and the others are safe…
A blazing, fiery light draws closer as Faisal finds himself floating in the heavens. For the first time that he can remember, the young man feels content and at peace. No anger burns within his heart and no doubts trouble his mind. He knows that he is Home.
The briefest of sensations washes over the dark-skinned man, a feeling of being pulled somewhere, as if someone important wanted him to come. A vague sense of connection and longing accompany the feeling, like an old memory lurking just below the surface of awareness. But the summons is short-lived and forgotten as quickly as it began.
The blazing light grows closer, and although Faisal can feel heat emanating from the beacon, it brings nothing but joy and comfort. As the glow draws near, the angelic form of a young woman becomes visible, her indescribable beauty almost painful to behold, yet filling the warrior with a sense of love and protection.
The Goddess smiles at the young man, an expression both motherly and concerned.
The words echo in Faisal’s mind, reverberating deep into his soul.
You have served me well, and deserve the reward of this peace. However, you have not completed the task that was asked of you, that others sacrificed so much to accomplish. Corruption still stains the heart of the land and your cleansing is incomplete.
The sky around Faisal darkens, and the feeling of peace begins to fragment. Doubt and uncertainty replace comfort and contentment as thunder rumbles in the distance. The sensation of being pulled somewhere begins again, this time more insistent and steady. The Lady draws closer.
There will be many trials yet, and many of the faithful shall fall in the coming turmoil. You must remain, to lead the uncorrupted. To rebuild. To protect.
The heavens begin to shake as the roar of the thunder reaches nearly unbearable levels. The Goddess draws even closer until the warrior can see nothing but her angelic countenance.
Go from here. Return to my daughter. Your destiny is linked with hers. Follow her. Trust her. Protect her, Faisal… Faisal… Faisal? Faisal, wake up! You need to wake up!"
As the last of the thunder and shaking fades away, the young warrior realizes that the face of The Goddess is that of Scarlet, leaning over him in concern. The lantern light behind the young woman lends a glow to her hair, appearing as a flaming halo of divine light. The warrior manages a weak smile and as he slips into an exhausted slumber, weakly mumbling a reply.
“As you proclaim, My Goddess.”