Vignettes from the City of Doors


He slept without stirring, aching bones finally resting on the bed of his youth. Another adventure was complete and yet his mind raced at the new possibilities.

In his dreams he sprinted through a glade alongside woodland fauna. The Fey Wild called to him from a city with impossibly-tall spires. He saw a feast laid out before him. Maidens danced and plucked at lutes while the warm summer air renewed his hopes. The Prince-King of the Eladrin smiled uneasily.

Noise! The old hero sprang out of bed and unsheathed his sword in a single motion. The sound of his sword scraping the scabbard echoed, reverberated, and began to sing. A figure emerged from the shadows of the hallway, into the moonlight. A woman, pain manifest, with a halo of spinning sword blades approached. Her eyes glowed; he feared for life itself.

She pointed to the parchment scroll in his hand. Shaking, he unrolled it and read:

For the unforgivable assassination of the Prince-King, for the pain you have caused to an entire realm, you are banished to my Maze forever. -Lady of Pain

Before he could protest he was plunged into darkness. He felt around for his tinderbox; the only sound was his panicked breathing. He squinted as the torch ignited. “Where am I? What is this?” The only response was his own echoes. Before him, twisty little passages – all alike.



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