Kenny was a clever boy but he from an early age he didn’t understand why the world works in its way. He understood the how well. He was interested in taking apart things and putting them back together. But why did they work how they worked? So when he was old enough, he set out on a quest to find out why the world is. What are we all here for? Most people ask themselves this question at least on occasion, but for Kenny, it was a burning desire. He tried religion. But the Priests, who as a child he thought great holy wise men, turned out to be nothing more than petty, self-righteous fools. They couldn’t even grasp the, most basic principle which is that whatever God’s Will is, no human being can know it completely. Their hubris in thinking that people can do anything but seek after God’s will drove Kenny away from religion and into the darker reaches of the world.
There he tried many ways to unlock the secrets of the universe. He practiced Dark Rituals and Alchemy. He consorted with knaves, witches, demons, succubi, creatures of shadow and all other manner of dark spirit and monster. He lied and cheated to gain more power and possessions. But the secrets eluded him. For years, through many trials and tribulations, Kenny toiled searching for the answer until one day he thought he found a ritual to summon a god. After amassing much power and wealth, Kenny started his greatest project to date. For many cycles of the moon, he crafted the ritual drawing upon everything he had learned until he was ready to cast it. As the stars and planets were aligned on that fateful day, Kenny was filled with anticipation for the final discovery he had been longing for. He would know the why.
Black auras surround the flickering flames of the brazier. The only light seems to conceal rather than illuminate. It barely reaches to the edge of the circle set in the ground woven of silver, gold, lead, iron, tin, copper and bronze. Layered to protect Kenny from any mishap his circle should be impenetrable. A low chanting seems to surround the brazier. Rhythmic and thumping, it is primal harkening back to the times when the world was younger, and men weren’t so sure they knew all. The beat is always ending high making it seem like a question.
Then in a clear and strident voice, Kenny calls out, “Here me O Ancient Ones. Hear me makers of the cosmos. Here me nameless forces of creation and destruction. I call upon you to answer me one question.”
“WHY IS THERE INJUSTICE IN THIS WORLD?,” shouts Kenny as the chanting rises to a crescendo like the sea crashing against the cliff during a hurricane.
The black aura coalesces into sharp-edged tentacles that start writhing around in the air the brazier. The flexible blades of obsidian dance in the air the fire. They begin to spin as a horrible sound like an orchestra tuning, nails on a chalkboard and a baby crying all at the same time. They spin into an oval cocoon that forms into the shape of a woman. She is both beautiful and horrible. Her long black hair dances around her like snakes as her red eyes gaze upon Kenny.
She smiles as the spider to the fly as she opened her mouth to speak. The sound that passes her lips is wordless and fades into ringing as Kenny gains a moment of realization. Finally, he understands why the world is the way it is, but his moment of triumph is short-lived. For more and more truth about the world flows into Kenny’s mind and it begins to disorient Kenny. He cries out “Enough, ” and the being laughs as the knowledge continues to flow into him. Every cell in his body cries out for it to cease as consciousness starts to fade. But even as he’s fading the moment seems to drag out into an eternity of pain. The being looks down at Kenny as tears stream down his face. He reaches up to feel them, and his hands come away bloody. His throat feels raw as he realizes he has been screaming all along.
He tries to speak, but the being puts her finger to her lips as she whispers, “I am Adika, I have answered your question foolish mortal. So now you know.” With that, she let out a lilting titter like a child giggling as she spins in place and vanishes. Kenny lies on the floor not realizing that he has fallen to the ground. Blood streaking from his nose, eyes, and ears starts to crust as Kenny finally starts to wake. His mind and body are broken from the weight of the answer to his question. The question that burned in his mind since he was a young child.
Kenny recovered slowly from his stupor and over time his body healed, but his mind was still afflicted. Using all sorts of alchemy and spirits, he endeavored to block out the knowledge that once he so desperately sought but now could only wish to forget. More time passed until finally, Kenny had almost destroyed himself. Standing at the brink of the abyss Kenny stared down at the unending blackness, he felt himself coiling to jump to drown himself in that inky blackness before him. But at the last moment, he heard a sound. Like a jingle of bells in the distance or maybe more like crystal breaking on the floor. Musical but with a note of discordance. He hesitated for a split second, and that was enough time for him to be saved. For all the power and knowledge he amassed what saved him wasn’t himself. It was something simple and yet magical. Something that we all take for granted but is a daily miracle. The sun rose revealing the healing light of dawn. Dawn was finally here and the dark precipice that almost swallowed Kenny dissipated like smoke on a windy day. Kenny turned suddenly as he heard another sound. This time it was like a mixture of a caterwaul and a toddler throwing a tantrum. Kenny caught a glimpse of the terrible beauty from his nightmares but this time twisted into pure ugliness from the expression of hatred and disappointment. This made Kenny smile as he returned to his life renewed by the light of the dawn.
Now Kenny knows what he must do. He must fight Adika and her evil minions whose purpose is no less than the total destruction of the human race. Since he is vastly outnumbered in his fight he must find allies in this world but the minions of Adika are everywhere, and her touch is corrupting and insidious. So he must be careful who he trusts in this fight for the sake of the world. Thus the battle for the world rages on.