From its vantage point on the astral plane, the thing completed the last part of its ritual. As the dragon died and fell from the sky, the magical forces the thing had set in place sprang into action, surging forward hungrily to snatch up the powerful creature's potent life energy and channel it—
So much power! The thing was a bit taken aback at the sheer amount of raw energy that washed over it as it was sucked into the conduit it had set up. Surely this must be enough energy to—
Struggling to control the tide of power, it did something that was not easy for it to do: it exercised restraint. The time was not yet right. All must occur at its appointed moment.
The dragon was strong—even stronger than it had anticipated. It was remotely possible that the thing might have been able to complete its plan using this dragon's energy alone. But if it failed—if it was not enough power—
—then all would be lost. To lose something so precious because of a lack of restraint...the Master would not be pleased. The ritual had not been set up with that end in mind, and therefore it could not be trusted to perform the task that was yet to come.
So, in the end, the thing did exactly what it had intended to do. Carefully, carefully, taking utmost patience to conceal each move it made (it was easier now, with the dragon's energy boosting its own) it wove the threads of the next stage of its plan. This part would take quite some time to finish, but it was crucial that it be done correctly. It would have time. And when it was finished, it would be sure to erase all indications of what had occurred here from the physical and the astral realms, so prying eyes would not be able to trace it. Doing that before would have been exceedingly difficult, but as the thing sat there with the dragon's power coursing through it, it had no doubt that now it would be a simple task.
After that, it would use whatever was left of the power to erase the memory of the ritual from the small one's mind (it would leave vestiges, just enough to give him nightmares and possibly drive him insane).
And finally, it would solidify its hold on the foolish one. His continued loyalty would be absolutely essential for the next stage of the plan.
Copyright ©1998 R. King-Nitschke. The Shadowrun universe is the property of FASA Corporation.
No part of this story may be reproduced without permission from the author.