Part 4. Knock Knock, Who’s There?
“WHOA PURITY!” The Good Prince tore on Purity’s reigns.
Smoke billowed in roiling streams, blotting out the reddening sun as it fell. The town was a burning ruin of char-bones and choking black smoke, the heretic dead strewn about it like a lumber-jacked forest. Only the Black Temple stood yet intact. The Nine surrounded it.
“Yon maiden wants for saving,” the Good Prince said as he kicked a mailed leg over his saddle, dismounting, thudding ankle-deep into the muck with the delicacy of a catapulted boulder. “Captains! The time is nigh. Let no soul escape unpurified. I shall storm its most inner sanctums! I shall find the frog!”
“Aye, Milord!” Eight Captains cried as one. “Death to the Wrackolyte!”
“For Sanctos!” roared the Good Prince. He saluted his Captains, then stormed that bastion of evil and stormed it alone for the only hurt that could pierce his boon heart was the felling of one of his Good Captains. He told them this not, though, for to do so would have been to lie. In truth he could not suffer to share the slaughter.
“For the Righteous! For the Just!” He stepped to the temple doors, hurling aside his war-shield. Taking a double grip upon the haft of the War Hammer of a Thousand Burning Suns, and with a single roaring swing, he burst the temple doors shattering off their hinges. Dying rays of blessed sunlight pierced the darkness beyond.
The villainous mob recoiled.
“Bring me the Wrackolyte frog and be spared!” he bellowed into the raucous black.
But like the Good Prince he was, he could suffer not to wait for the villains to accede to his demands, and instead did what few men are wont to do. He strode alone into darkness.
“Help! Help us!” the villains roared.
“Mercy!” they bellowed.
“Mommy! Daddy!” the villains spat.
But the Good Prince heard them not. With ears cloistered in sanctified steel, impervious he was to the villains’ auditory assaults.
“Where be yon Maiden!?” The Good Prince was wroth. He smashed on his fore-strike as well as his back, and where he could not smash flesh, he desecrated wood and shattered stone. But vile flesh huddled present in an abundatude. For the black temple was packed nigh to bursting with an army of evil, and nary a swing but purified sinners. Bones shattered underfoot as he strode on through the dark, thundering with his spike-shod boots, ramming like a muck ox with his gloriously serrated pauldrons. Men who grappled him were impaled upon spiked eructations or sawn limbless upon his sanctified serrations. Some had the honor of both. Souls billowed in pillars like the smoke.
Brittle makeshift weapons shattered like candy canes upon his shining armor and nary slowed his charge.
“My baby — you crushed my—”
SMASH! — the Hammer fell — “VILLAINS!” — dispensing purity and release — “Where be yon Bride? Where be yon Froggy Wrackolyte? Give them to ME! I will save thee, Maiden!” He smashed his way through walls of sinning flesh and despite the vile heretic fluids that poured down upon him in hurricane torrents, his armor and Good Soul shone yet untouched by the evil infesting that horrible place.
“Craven witch! Come forth so that I might smite thee!”
He trod toward the back of the Temple, for suddenly through the blood and murk he espied a door no doubt leading to the Wrackolyte’s inner sanctum. Above his helmed head the War Hammer rose and fell, shattering in twain the Bleak Altar of the Black Temple. He split a path through its remains as though it were heretic flesh, kicking aside shards and lustful effigies.
“Heretics, quail before the light of Sanctos!”
Stained glass windows smashed as bodies tore through them. Dozens fought like the inbred savages they were to escape purification, and yea, as though Sanctos himself had ordained it, miraculously did a pathway suddenly appear clear and unimpeded before the step of the Good Prince. And that path he strode. Bodies fell before. Behind.
Man, woman, and child, villains all, were crushed, screaming in repentance against unyielding stone walls while dozens of others crawled out bloody through shattered windows that a child could barely wriggle through.
“Wrackolyte! Come to me, Wrackolyte!” roared the Good Prince just before he stove in the sanctum door with a single — SMASH! — of the War Hammer of a Thousand Burning Suns!