Dark Lyrics


1. Imperial Dawn


2. Set Nakt Heh

[Shadows dance on rough walls deep beneath the towering and moon-painted edifice. Far below the ancient and labyrinthine halls of the Clerical Council, the clandestine band gather under the baleful gaze of the Fulcrum, upon which the destiny of kingdoms teeters: Leriak's eyes glitter with the reflected light of the flames and a deeper excitement, perceiving the culmination of machinations so painstaking in preparation and set in motion so very long ago. Though still but the first precarious steps on a long and arduous path, this night a flame would be lit that would illumine the path to godhood!]

[Voice of the Vault Immemorial:]

Sputtering braziers shear through silence with incising sibilance -
Heralds to the arrival of...

[Invocations to the Great Serpent:]


[Leriak's supplication:]

The Slithering Shadow – The God of the Void
Reveal to us your mysteries and
Accept this vessel of flesh purloined
In benighted assault
From the Star-Spawned's Temple,
An ideal of such proud presumption,
Whose light shall be smothered in scaly snares
Of invertebrate might!

Plaintive cry of the dejected damned,
Who at the yawning void of the Black Abyss stands,
And upon whose lips a lie forlorn
(For a final utterance that she hopes may save
Her soul which to the Darkness is already, inexorably condemned)
But whose flesh shall again rise as a god reborn.


[Musings on a sacrificial offering:]

Painstaking engraving of unicursal forms etched,
Delicate and deeply incised into flesh;
Quaking and shaking horripilated and bound
As red rivulets now run her damned cries resound.

[The Vault Immemorial:]

Cast into Darkness, as life's tremulous grip slips hold
Prone and disrobed form both soul and flesh to ancient evil sold
Still thy beating heart and quaking breast and grant our Dark Lord vile ingress.
Feel the slow slip from cursed existence and let the Abyss embrace with soft and beguiling caress.

[Leriak's Invocation:]

The flick of Thy tongue shall be the command,
The whip of Thy tail writ unquestioned,
Unerring devotion at the mere brush of Thy breath,
And the touch of Thy venom shall send scores to their deaths!

Awaken now!
From torment rise!
In black shadow,
To ensnare the skies!

Arise ye now, from slumber! Awaken!
Entwined, the Earth shall fall as ye Arise!

3. Vow of the Exiled

[The sacking of the Imperial Duchy of Lokstad was long in the planning; arduously and meticulously contrived with well-placed words whispered in trusting ear and advising hand ushering ink to parchment on writs of war. Yet to the unsuspecting denizens of the ancient and lauded principality, the assault came with no more warning than the creak of a hunter's bow.]

[Darkened corridors and palisades the hunting grounds of black-swathed figures with stealthy tread and razor-sharp blade, which opened the throats of those whose heads would not be turned with a purseful of bloodstained coin. While beyond the city walls, hidden by forest and mist and whatever conjurings the Clerics – who so assiduously campaigned for the Duchy's destruction – could muster, ballista and trebuchet made ready to send forth a volley of flaming missiles into the night.]

[Duke Godfrey, recent successor to the dukedom's seat, fell quickly. His ill-fated charge in the firelight was both glorious and tragic to behold: Leading the assault, his flaxen steed was felled by an onslaught of arrow and spear and his throat opened before the hind legs of the noble beast had met the ground. Blood sprayed the pennants of his personal guard and banners fell as screams rose from deep within the castles walls.]

[And so it fell to Tanric, the youngest son of the noble house, to salvage what was left of his subjects. Under the guiding hand of the mercenary general Dragomir and clutching a sword drenched in gore, the young duke cut a bloody swathe through the assault and toward the ominous freedom of the hills beyond the lands he knew so well.]

[The rallying cry of General Dragomir:]

Take heart and take steel
Our path is revealed!

[The fall of Lokstad as seen from the Lyrrian Hills:]

Incendiary cinders insurgent,
Bourne on an icy breeze;
Antecedent heralds of rapacious winds
Yet to come, a ravening
Scourge, (a surge,
A cleansing, bitter purge...)

Nestled in the bountiful bosom, the very heart of this verdant land,
Security's illusion birthed the delusion that thus it would forever stand,
But for now the flames shall cleanse: Their caress
Both as welcome and as loathsome as a treacherous lover's bequest.

[Tanric's vow:]

I am the Dagger in the Darkness,
The Flame in the Black,
Purifier of imperspicuous horrors teeming to attack
I am the Sword bedecked in shadow,
The blood in stone encased
The axe-edge to behead the revenant-servant of the dead
The fury of the Wolf whose fur is forever stained red

[Reflections on a legacy lost and position inherited:]

The stronghold of my forebears – black towers piercing wintry skies,
Undisputed dominion brought to heel in deep crimson sanguiferous rivers where its broken stones now lie.

(The mantle never mine to bear now falls heavily
on shoulders as yet unaccustomed to its weight,
Of one lost to black reverie).

The conflagration casts unearthly aspect
Across such familiar territory,
Now a land tormented (In Sacrilegious subjugation),
Awaits the amassing of spears to be redeemed.

Shades of torment,
Thy wings enshroud the mind
Just as this mantle of leadership weighs the shoulders down.

What harbingers of fates unseen did tread
My lands and break bread
At my father's table?
The sable gate of damnation stands now open,
To let slip plague-hound abomination
To (poison these once wealthy streets,
And) scavenge at the base of shining spires,
Dulled with the smoke of funeral pyres.

How they must have conspired!
Treacherous hearts holding noble ties,
Entwined in the ordure of black desires,
Obscuring Truth and upholding lies

[The Oracle speaks:]

(Stray not from the path and you shall foretell,
In shadowed ages what the fates refused to sell)

For bloodied blade – sacrificial knife,
Indebted soul, yet torment and strife
Shall watchwords be,
From sea to sea,
Your path shall lead,
To victory...

...elusive save for what dreadful cost?
Unknown and yet the iron boss,
Of a shield that stands against the dark,
You will be – a destiny revealed to me.
Such stories that are yet to be told,
Shall wreathe legends in minds of those who will behold!

4. A Summoning to War

[A Summoning to War (Dea Bellorum Invicta)]

[Excerpt taken from the journal of Count Wilhelm:]
[For how many months have I heard the the tumultuous cacophony of carnage in my dreams? Each night, my eyes close and it begins again – the fanfare of horns, the call to arms, the commanding clarion demanding a price paid in blood and flesh. My heart races, my blood quickens; each fibre of my being yearns to throw itself with reckless abandon into the carnage, and yet each morning I rise with tired limbs, uncomprehending of why I am assailed by such dreams of slaughter and why I greet such nightmarish visions not with horror and repulsion but a glee and bloodlust I have never before tasted on any of the numerous battlefields of my past.]

[Yet now the timbre of the dreams shifts: The battle-horns still call out to me; their peels seemingly echoing across unfathomable chasms; still I hear the clash of iron and steel and hear the cries of victory and defeat as slayer and slain are dealt their hands by capricious fortune; though now I hear too the voice of a woman, though the words are indistinct, I seem to hear each syllable as clearly as I do the shrill clarion over the battle's din. She appears to me a vision in silk and steel and diaphanous cotton; both hard as iron yet delicate as gossamer strands...]

Upon seas of time she rides the waves of fate.
Come to me, daughter of the hunt,
You who hath seen the birth of man and borne witness to the end of aeons.

Attend them!
The war-horns sound,
Within my soul abound!

Hark! I hear the call,
Across the seas of time.
A compulsion so sublime –
A summoning to war!

Blessed goddess
Betwixt the planes
Upon Stygian wing
Thy wrath unchained.

I have answered your call,
You who have bridged the gap 'twixt the realms perennial and ephemeral.
Come, let our blades satisfy the demands of baleful ire:
To glory in carnage
And be satiated in slaughter!

Across the seas of time,
Compulsion so sublime
What chaos hast thou wrought
To summon . . . summon me to court?
Black mistress far beyond the temporal sea,
Black goddess, thou belongst to me!
Together we'll blot out the sun
And grant them, these realms, no absolution.

Blessed goddess
Betwixt the planes
Upon Stygian wing
Thy wrath unchained.

Blessed goddess
Betwixt the planes
Upon Stygian wing
Thy wrath unchained.

What is this need – insanity?
But what deeds and deities await
My blade? Now offer fealty to me!


Satiated in slaughter! To glory in carnage!
Our blades shall descend to this erstwhile king
And then together we shall rise,
Our spirits carnally entwined,
Our passion to blot out the sun,
To glory, my benighted one,
We shall conquer Creation's throne.

[Recondite knowledge of the nature of the coexisting planes thus revealed, for the demands of war commanded it so. Mortal steel by mortal hand summoned by those that seem so ephemeral but are deathless, insofar as men's minds would reckon, to bring a mortal finality to that otherwise eternal. For even gods may grow corrupt and even the divine can lust for carnality...]

5. Hordes Ride

[Tanric, exiled and rightful ruler to the Imperial duchy of Lokstad:]
[Following the siege of Lokstad and my escape aided by Dragomir of the hill-men whom I had now elevated to the rank of general of the rabble still loyal to the black banner of my house, I travelled east: Moving at night when able and swathed in rags of itinerant beggars and pilgrims, we pressed on until, at last, we were in lands free from influence of both Emperor and Cleric. The Steppe lay before us and, in the vain hope of finding the might which may one day lead me to regain my lands, we continued across that barren waste. Within days, with sparse vegetation and little hunting to be had, the few loyal men I possessed began to flag and we left a trail of corpses in our wake. I began to fancy I heard the sound of hoof beats on the wind and the cries of charging warriors, the howling flurry was the only sound to be heard – that and the thunder of my own heartbeat and panting breath. The Lost Hordes of the Steppe, we sought, yet found nothing but veiled mentions and cloaked reference to the venomous band still said to rage across these benighted lands.]

[The voice of the raging winds of the Steppe:]

I bear witness
To realms beyond the void
Swirling shadows
Surround riders deployed
I have tasted
Of the flesh of man
Forged in hatred
I summon their souls
Again the pyres shall burn
With demonic winds ride
Steel by my side
Vengeance to claim
The hordes shall ride once again...

Into the mountain snows
Into the night
Hearts aflame and eyes alight
With Hatred's ravishing inferno
Upon sweat-lathered ethereal steed,
I shall sweep as storm winds – personified ire
Eternal vengeance on the unredeemed.

Pick your targets
Hold the line
Loose your arrows
For this stolen bride

With desire's all-consuming fire
A demented dash on a dying steed
I shall lay waste to all that would conspire
To rob me of that one I need

By what foul cosmic jest
Am I now beset?
With immortality now blessed
I attest to her last exhale

Onward through mounting snows
And deeper night
Hearts aflame and eyes alight
With Hatred's ravishing inferno
A demented dash on a dying steed,
Bring storm winds and harness your ire
Vengeful jaws on their flesh to feed.

Targets aligned – Arrows loosed
Through mists of blood, we charge
By rage seduced

"By the spirits – I shall ignite an inferno
To blacken the flesh of these treacherous foes!
And unleash such a torrent of terror
That all men will tremble to behold!"

We built the pyres, we built them high
And fed to them the condemned,
Honourless men who dared steal a bride
From me who did ascend
To the height of Khan of the tribes unified
Who to the fire threw screaming men,
Whose guile granted forfeiture of their lives
And on whose blistered flesh I fed,
Devouring meat and soul both
Consuming malevolence and strength,
'Neath the gaze of their screaming comrades,
Blood and fat ran down my neck
Incantations unbidden came,
From where the Sky-Father knows,
Denying their souls the grace of whatever rest Elysium may hold,
'Neath baleful gaze of the cold, screaming stars,
I felt the change within,
And the coldness grew within my flesh,
Despite the flames searing heat.
I arose, mortal sweat still glistening,
Upon my metamorphosed form,
Bitterness and hatred in a crucible sealed
Of humanity forlorn.

Beneath benighted tread
To walk this cold earth's soil
Countless to behead
My eternal, bloody toil

Cursed by gods
hatred sublime
the deities' blood
Shall wet my lips as wine

My flesh now cold
As the lips which ignited my soul.
If this be the gods' curse,
Then I curse the gods in turn!

A new banner now billows
Over barren plain
I'll taste sweet vindication
Ere my essence wanes.

This is no redemption I seek
Further vengeance I shall wreak
With this Argyr-Lyrrian spawn
The walls of heaven I'll storm!


The Plain now empty -
I stare as if in a daze -
Though the thunderous clamour
Of hoof-beats still remains!
What arcane powers
Have granted fealty?
Soon all nations
Shall bend the knee to me!

6. An Ensign Consigned

[King George's colours stir in the fog-laden air – roiling and snapping in the gust which rent the night with a chill as sharp as the keenest cutlass; slicing to the very marrow...]

[Enshrouded against the unending tirade of the Tempest's harbingers, the waxed, enveloping fabric no bane of the steady saturation which deluged a figure of nigh-legend, whose sea-grey eye cast bitter and brooding gaze across the viscillation far below the coils and confusion of rope and sail; and offered up vengeful prayers to whatever maritime gods may pay heed. Reginald James Coram, equally drenched as the tormented ensign, cut a shadowy figure perched, as he was, high in the reaches of the Insuperable's rigging and one that did much to belie his status as Captain of the lost and limping sea-wolf which dragged its tattered frame through unknown waters and against unknown numbers of an unknown foe...]

[Captain Reginald James Coram:]

Thalassic vista from corvine promontory;
How my blood burns to see adversarial sails engulfed in flame!

Summon the storms!
Upon tumultuous waves
To Poseidon sworn -
Lend me thy rage!

The sail is trimmed
As we turn in to the wind
(Though sea-fogs abound)

Raise the ensign! Let cannon resound!
With fire and iron let us take them down!
For Britannia – She who rules the waves,
Death or Glory shall we taste this day.

Through the fog's enveloping shroud
A black mast stark against white background

What hellish portent is this?
Incendiary doom emerges from the mist
Crimson tongues the pitched boards lick
We face the fire-ship!
For I always knew I would die at sea . . .

But by such cowardly recourse?
My pistol's primed – I draw my sword
Ready the cannon once again!
The sea it's own shall claim

Nine miles from the Infernal Gates,
The Green awaits,
Luscious and verdant,
Where the Ocean's tumult cannot reach
Nor Damnation penetrate.

Burning cinders caught on the wind, (searing eyes and scorching already parched throats...)
Give no quarter and steel yourselves to fear:
(We shall greet death with war-songs on our lips!)

Hail the ensign! Guns again resound!
Soon enough, these splintered decks shall drown.
Not for Britannia but our souls themselves,
If we're to perish we'll drag them down to Hell!

Such peace when damnation beckons...

Burning cinders: rise on the wind!
Destruction carried as if on Phoenix' wing

Wolves of inclement seas
In cacophony
And violence meet
In rage collide;
A pyre alight
(To ravage the skies)

Caught between the burning decks
And ocean's depths
To which an ensign is consigned!

[While the Insuperable's legend lives on, history does not record the fate of the revered and much beleaguered vessel, much less it's erstwhile captain; the latter of which came as something of a relief to the rigidly starched and structured ranks of the officers whose positions were gained far more by wealth than merit.]

[Yet, those born to wave, spray,wind and surf know well the stories of the Captain Atop the Mast, whose indistinct figure can be glimpsed in seabourne mists and fogs of cannon-smoke; whose laughter echoes as the discharge of that fearsome battery and whose fate is to be forever carried on the selfsame waves 'neath which that heraldic blazon flies still.]

7. Pax Imperialis

[The Triumvirate united: The proud cities of Argyrr, Ferra and Aurelia form the heart of Severius' might and the crowns of silver, iron and gold are reforged as a single diadem as the word 'empire' spills forth from the lips of the people.]

[Yet the enemies of a newly incorporated empire are many and in the north the barbarians of the forests grew restless. To quell the continual harrying of mist-enshrouded outposts, and to secure the yoke of imperial dominance securely around the necks of the dissidents thus far unenlightened to the Empire's might and under the leadership of one Malleus Ferrus, the First Legion marches north:]

[Song of the First Legion:]

"By blood and by steel,
By the banner of black.
Keep moving forward – press the attack!
By fire and iron,
For the Golden Throne,
We'll route the accursed
And make their women our own!"

[Imperial battle-cry:]

Pax Imperialis! Invictus Imperium!

[Malleus Ferrus, head of the First Legion:]

Out of shining Argyr, the Silver City, we marched,
A newly coalesced empire – our dominance to impart!
With gleaming catafracta, cassis and scutum,
Each man with pila, spatha and well-oiled gladius.

The dew of the forested hills
Lent glamour to our arms.
The rabble's attacks – we pushed them back
With disciplined advance.
Shields locked in grim formation,
Steadily we pressed on,
'Till the hills ran red,
With the blood of the dead
And Pax Imperialis was won!
But within our ardour,
We underestimated this foe.
With battle songs still fresh on our lips
And in a land unknown.
The bestial cries of the Hillmen,
Came echoing through the trees.
To avenge the dead
Whose blood marked us red
And in which we were soaked from head to greaves.

In a narrow path they took us,
And our shields were as nought,
Routed by the fury of this Lyrian onslaught.
Spitting curses as if they were fire,
Rushed our ash-painted enemies.
The few left who could breathe
Were forced to flee
Into the icy embrace of the sea.

(Accompanied by shameful odes to defeat,
Dying cries of wounded brothers – a cacophonous symphony.)

Pax Imperialis! Victis Legionibus!

Sanctuary sought in this place of the dead,
The moment we entered, our very souls were condemned!

What use is sword and spear,
Within these onyx halls
When our adversaries are shadows?
One by one I watch my brothers fall.

[For many years did Emperor Severius send scouts and spies north to discover the fate of his beloved First Legion. And although many rumours abounded and legends grew in their wake – ranging from tales of the mundane to the supernatural – even when the Imperial Forces had quelled the uprising of the Thulean rable and incorporated their ferocity into the armies of the Empire, none could tell with any certainty what grim fate had befallen them.]

[Yet, on a cold shore, in a forgotten tomb, a wordless scream echoes from obsidian walls deep within a lightless chamber.]

8. By Lucifer's Crown

(By Lucifer's Crown (Lapis Exillis))

[Jerusalem, 1099AD]
[The siege well underway: The massed throng of the Crusader army baying for blood at the Holy City's gates; the ubiquitous assault of trebuchet fire the beating heart of the unrelenting offensive, drumming the rhythm toward an inexorable conclusion.]
[Amongst the Host, the Grey Lord Aldric stands with his mercenary band – eyes alight with the promise of plunder and much to the consternation of those genuinely pledged to the war of Innocent III.]
[Rumours abounded of godless practice and the worship of darker, older gods, more malign even than the infidels' divinity, while others still claimed that the man worshipped none at all – casting his soul to the winds of fate with no champion deity to shield him...]

[Lord Aldric Grey:]

Siege towers in ponderous procession – reflections of the laborious revolution of political wheels which so en-mired me in a quest preached by a man of war in robes of peace:

A sable shadow by unscalable walls cast,
A city sanctified for 1000 years past
With innocent blood – By ominous chill, I am gripped,
As by perfidious words of that primate of priests.

[Neath flickering flame-light the siege towers' creaking forms progress toward the white, scarred walls. Strength and stealth are allies as the scheming of spies ensures defences from within are breached and the multitudinous force of our mangonels is unleashed!]

[War-Cries of the Crusaders:]

Deus le volt!
Destroy the heathen!

[Lord Aldric Grey:]

Pledged to baser purpose,
Your decrepit god
Offers no favour!

By the strength of my arm and the tenacity of my will shall I claim that which I seize as my own!

Come, we stand as one,
Take up your blades
And we shall lay waste these shades -
Remnants of men
Whose pitiful ken
Cannot comprehend they are slain
Push ever on – the day's not yet won
There's far more carnage to be done!
Come, wolves of the plains,
Give fury free reign
In blood and fire we'll inscribe our names...

Into the timeless annals of history.
While our bodies rot, why must our deeds?

[Keeper of the Stone:]

Cast off those chains of mortality.
And behold that which all men seek!

Ankle-deep and wading in sanguineous misery
Hacking as habit at the writhing massed humanity.
A sea of blood now consumes the basilica.

The gate of the Rock will not be opened in the face of such nefarious and diabolical slaughter
Women and children as one crumple under christian blades.

[Lord Aldric Grey:]

Deep within these frescoed, bloody halls I feel the tremors of our missiles this city's secrets to disturb
Launched from far beyond the walls where something ancient is interred now through fragmenting stony floor it clamors to be reborn

Hearken in thrall
To Lapis Exillis' call
A city of eternal war
Has a man of such born

[Lord Aldric Grey:]

By the stone of Lucifer's crown have I been granted the the gift of an eternity mired in bloodshed!

9. Of Stone and Tears

[From "The Chronicle of Kings"]
[...Having sent messengers on foot, hoof and wing, it was on the ninth day of that month, in the year 1213 of the Empire's founding, Duke Tanric marshalled his forces and led his column toward the seat of the Clerical Council – long may it stand by the will of the gods. The planned assault was to come from three sides with armies led by Leofric, bolstered by mercenaries travelling from the blessed city of Ferra, to arrive by sea to the west, those of Dragomir to circumvent the Duke's own ancestral seat of Lokstad and press in from the east – having enlisted further men to the cause from his fellow tribesmen from the Lyrrian hills – while Tanric would lead his knights on horseback and assault from the south.]

[A day of blood was at hand and many reports of storms and ill-omens came from all corners of the Empire…(Fragment)]

[(under the) guidance of Councillor Cleric Leriak, His Imperial Majesty Erlend (called Pretender those unenlightened to the teachings of the Blessed Council) believing that the Duke would move to reclaim his ancestral lands, secured his armies in the newly reinstated imperial capital, Lokstad. As such, when word of the course of the Duke Leofric reached Erlend's ear and reports of Tanric's contingent brought news of bypassing the North Road to enter the on the southern reaches of the Emperor's demense, forces were quickly divided to ensure the security of the Duke's true goal – the Council's chambers themselves.]

[Leriak – At the dawn of the ninth cycle, at the height of the sacred tower of the Council:]

Hear the choirs of malefic devils on the wind – something arcane stirs in the pool of this reality…

In all his pomp and glory, man comes to disassemble a bastion far surpassing his own understanding. Such almighty insolence, such uncompared arrogance, such absurd presumption to think that he could fell this towering oak of stone and tears. Does he not know that this place was a conduit to things far greater than his pitiful mammalian brain could grasp, for ages long before the towers were raised upon the natural citadel, many lifetimes before the raising of the Council's seat to this place? I now stand as a conduit, myself. A channel through which those servants of the Great Serpent work their will on this pitiful scrap of land – for all its unknown wonders and countless treasures, this world is as nothing to Him – Set-Nakt-Heh!

[Duke Tanric:]

'Neath Citadel's shadow we stand!
Now we shall see a last reverie
Blood's revelry in the tumult of packed flesh
Here we attest – behold the death
Of those cloaked in the robes of the Dark!

[Leriak – (atop the citadel of the council):]

Darkness – it's coming,
The pool is as blood:
Each ripple a tide that will wash away
This fool upstart
With such presumption.
Release the bonds
And devour the light of the day!

[Dragomir – General of Duke Tanric's forces:]

Rise up, lock shields and advance!
Embrace the pain – Bellum Dea reigns!
Her form glimpsed grinning with bloodlight in her eyes

[Duke Tanric:]

Let this sacrifice be of their lives
Bathed in their blood I shall reclaim what is mine!

Go – push onwards, though in mud sinking
The light of their fires the dead illumine

[Dragomir – in the throes of Leriak's ensorcellment:]
Hark – the whisper
Doubt assaults me:
This war is not mine!
The Serpent wakes within….


Mired in ignorance, they have no concept of for they have not yet tasted true Fear. What has thus far been manifest is but a precursor, for
Dusk is but a shadow of Night….

[Duke Tanric:]

No – it cannot be!
To what treachery have I now succumbed?
Overrun – we are undone
Is this how the end's to come?!

I see the bleeding face of gods
Writhing on the spit of my disdain
The boughs of the Blood-oak bend!
Yet still the Serpent reigns!

[Duke Tanric:]
Though all around me they die,
I yet live! Face me, foul demon!

This is my triumph!
Feel now, (how the shadow burns!)

Loathsome Fate! If this was thine altar,
I would wrench each pitiful morsel of strength
To see it broken in two;
If this was Thy name, curses would rain
To leave smouldering ruin from lips
Ignited to black hatred's flame.

How can you profess to fulfill His will when the Predator's eye
Is cold at the time of the kill?!

[Chants from the quorum of the Clerical Council echo as annihilation spreads before the Citadel:]

Serpentis deus rex in eternum invictus

[The Chronicle:] That day the Gods made their will known. Though there was no clear victor on the field, the Godssword shone brightly in the carnage spewed forth from the Blessed Citadel, cutting down all who stood upon that bloody patch of earth as with a flaming blade of unfathomable magnitude. Yet, what became of the erstwhile Duke Tanric, it was not known. Some rambled about ghostly hooves that came to the Exiled's aid but were, no doubt, the voices of those demented from witnessing first hand the power of the True Gods. The power which decided the fate of the Empire and ensured that the Blessed Tower remained unbreached.

10. Aeolian Supremacy

(Aeolian Supremacy: Wrath of the Anemoi)

[Betwixt the fall of the Empire in the south and the rise of it's northern descendent, a dark time mostly lost to the chroniclers, the strength of the Serpent saw a dominance hitherto unimagined. Towers to His name rose seemingly overnight in many of the cities fallen to decadence in the void left by imperial surety. The cult, justified by certainty in their dark cause, unscrupulously amassed wealth and power. Fearful whispers of arcane rites and the disappearance of those who dared voice opposition, ensured their unrivalled supremacy and the subjugation of the populous.]

[Beyond the nighted veil:]

Hark the writ of Father Set!
The Serpent's rise in black aspect
Envenomed fang shall strike and spread
It's venom through the world of men.
The bulwark that will stand against:
Rampant dragon with flame bedecked.
How futile is the splendid strife,
When two masks of one god's visage unite!

[Arcane rites in the sanctum of the Black Temple:]

Alabaster limbs, eyes of jet
Air weighted with succulent scent
Oiled limbs entwined, undulating bodies writhe….

The riders amass – purification is nigh!

[High-priest of the Black Temple:]

A taste of Death's bitter-sweet sting
With inhuman voice sing
A pact thus sealed with unnatural sin

[Aeddan – scout in service to Mael Phelan:]

Stories of these loathesome dogs have reached even me on the distant isles of Immyrh. It is said they lie with their gods and eat of their dead….

[Mael Phelan – lord of the Boreal Riders and guardians of the Northern Sanctum:]

Fresh winds from the north, come forth;
Ride with the wrath of the storm
From the high peaks we swarm
Death from on high
Wreathed in righteous decree, with gods' speed
We fly to glory
To carve our story,
With bright steel at our sides.

Onwards we ride!

To sun-scorched lands' desert sands,
Where the Black Serpent rises
In numerous guises,
Yet all bear His mark.
From the frost-forged lands of the Borealis:
The light ever brightest
In the midst of the dark!

To triumph we charge!

[High-priest of the Black Temple:]

Open the gate – Let forth the swarm, it is but fate
A sacrifice shall be made!
Loose the chains! Let the devils rage – it is His way!
Let nothing of them now remain!

[War-cries of the armies of the Black Serpent:]

Cut them down – let them die
Leave their bones where they lie
Carve their souls from their flesh
To ingest...

[Mael Phelan:]

Ye Southern lords, raise your swords!
Beneath one banner, a glorious clamour
As armies unite!
From the east and the west
At our behest
Come riding the zephyr
A tempest that knows no fear -
Together we strike

And shall lay waste, a conquest
Nothing less
They shall all fall before us,
Either fealty or a sword thrust
Shall mark the way

And when the smoke clears
On revered earth so newly blessed with bloodshed
None alive shall doubt then
That we have won the day.

Who can say whether the pitiless, uncaring eye even perceives the torment which unfolds in the realms of man?
Even as the stars align in such portentous display to those dwellers below, far beyond mortal understanding His coils reach, ensnaring all creation in obdurate grip.

11. Of Setting Suns and Rising Moon

[Dragomir – in the aftermath of the Battle of the Citadel 1214:]
[Such an ending, I never foresaw: The heavenly cascade does little to purify the travesty of sodden earth – this mire of blood and excrement. Foul miasmas rise to torment me with visions of the inevitable, mirroring the fate of this mortally broken flesh. Of salvation there is no hope. And peace? The only such balm I shall receive is that which I find in this moment, just as the sweet rain wets my parched, broken lips and dilutes the iron-strong taste that shall remain with me now and at the end.]

[Glories I have known. I remember… or remembered. Their memory grows dim as shadows viewed through a diaphanous screen or reflections in murky and unbecalmed waters. Are these mine, these victories? Or are these but passing reveries – dreams of how I wish to be remembered and know that it will not be so?]

[I die a traitor to my chosen lord and, if I am even graced with the like, "recreant" shall be my epitaph.]

[Command of the Crown Prince of the Void:]

Behold ye now the voices of the ten thousand thrice-damned.

Tell me not of great deeds you have dreamed, tell me now of the carnage, of the slaughter committed at your hand.


I stand. Soft susurration beckons, (urgent and seductive). The chill encloses as the fog all about me. (Though seemingly alone), shadowed figures move in the mist and eyes gleam from somewhere beyond the entwined limbs of this arboreal enclave.

What sorcery? What vile mesmerist's jest now lays before me?

[Crown Prince of the Void:]

You ask for succor – I send you a sword on which to die!
You ask for vindication, I give you the means to end all life.

The thirteenth conjunction.
Alignment, alight from vernal injunction,
Embrace the tempest's unerring compulsion,
Give succor to Shadow for callow light is hereby expunged.

[Dragomir's Epiphany:]

From an unknown rampart, do I see
The advance of some unknown enemy
and I perceive that all exists within me!


I will not take up this sword that you offer
I see the abyssic winds that rage in the Shadow
If the eternal torments of the void shall be my only succor
Let it be done!
No instrument of devils or divinities
Shall I be
I am of the earth
And the earth is me!

The voices of ten thousand thousand void-lost souls scream in supplication.
Innumerable, unknowable inflictions – this my beckoning damnation.

Bloodied at the stone foot of the dais,
Of She who reclines resplendent in silk and steel
Masks of destroyer and mother both adorn her tantalising form revealed
Now unto me:

[Prayer to the War-Goddess:]

Aid me, Mother War, you who have seen the fires of my soul.
Grant me strength to be stalwart in the face of such sweet temptation
And not be swayed from the course of unalterable end...

[Bellum Dea speaks:]

Embrace the pain of corporeal flesh
Return the soul to the temple of unrest
Stray not and seek no refuge
Drink deep from the cup that you cannot refuse
This prophecy that has now come to pass
Shall see that these breaths are your last
Savour each and every rasping exhale:
Your heralds to lands beyond the veil.


I return… The plains of existence falling away beneath my feet.

Stoic glee for now I am free
Though bound by the chains of mortality
Once again, I can see
The bodies of those that have preceded me.
For what have I fought and died?
I know not, though a servitor's role denied,
(And) realised, that though significance resides
There is no great meaning to life.

None hath won, for all is one!
Seek not the shadow nor the sun,
For all is one.
All is one!

Thanks to kullmetaluk for sending these lyrics.

Submits, comments, corrections are welcomed at webmaster@darklyrics.com


- Privacy Policy - Disclaimer - Contact Us -