What Battles May ComeIn a valiant effort to calm himself, Kail took a slow, deep breath-an effort made vain for the sharp stagnancy of the dank and forbidding atmosphere. He coughed, his confidence fleeing with his breath. The air here had not seen a man for centuries, and the flavor of it festered in his mouth for a time.The ancient and heavy wooden door fell shut behind him and his unease escalated into panic until, to his great relief, he found it had not locked itself, as the legends had told; but silent whispers of many a failure seemed to rise from the bones of men and women not a few, their fleshless fingers still holding fast to the cankering steel of blades and bucklers.He bid his heart be still, but as he gazed about, a chill ran down his spine; apparently the tales told no lies about the many brave souls who had entered this place, never again to feel the gentle kiss of sunlight. He drew another reluctant breath. For as long as he could remember, he had dreamt of this hour, but now his dreams
What Lies Within Us AllFound bestrewn 'cross th'frigid iceOf Winter's bitter, freezing blight,The remnants of a Hope in flightLie scattered, slowly fading;Like a fire once it burned,Stopped by none, like magma churned--Heated by an inward yearningFor a world better far.Still, the Fates muse silently..The choice: To cut or leave the stringTo see what Hope does, left to beAn independent agent?A gust of frost-chilled wind stabs past;It seems for Hope to be the lastFoul, frozen breath--in final gaspA hiss is almost heard--Alas!!A cackle of delight rings high;The Fates exchange their ancient eyeTo see the great and wond'rous sightOf human Hope's roaring defiance.Still not understood by men,Nor for years to come will've ever been--Man's heart and will time and againIn worst of worst shall learn to burstAnd burn e'er brighter in the end.