Fear Fable

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By Eldrea Addams

In Andrinor's city, the tension runs high,
Fiends lying in wait upon every side,
Sentinels preparing as well as they can,
To defend the townsfolk unto the last man.

T'was a party of these brave souls who indeed,
Did enter the sewers to save one in need,
But more than the innocent child did they find,
- A glabrezu demon gone out of its mind!

The fiend, it did cower in terror you see,
As if it were mortal, just like you and me,
But what, you might ask, was the source of its fear?
Of that it said nothing except for: "IT'S HERE!"

And afterwards, some of that party would swear,
They did glimpse a shadow flitting here and there,
And wondered from whence all the traps had appeared,
That surely were not there until they had neared.

Then nothing, 'til upon Mt Crest there were found,
Bugbears and demonkin strewn across the ground,
Deceased not from wounding, nor poison, nor blight,
But to all appearances ended by fright!

And later, a magess of Iv'ry did stray,
Up on Mt Geritri, and right in harm's way.
They found her half crazy with terror, I'm told,
'fore she gave her soul to the Harpinger's hold.

But despite her passing, her fear it lived on,
Touching those close by though her spirit was gone,
And nearby a mighty wolf demon lay dead,
Its life claimed - you've already guessed it - by dread!

The Sentinels now were determined to find,
The source of this power to darken the mind,
And in this intent they were far from alone,
For lust to control it in fiends' hearts had grown!

Then in dark, cobwebbed cave, at last sign was found,
An aura of menace from deep underground.
Through fear-addled demons our heroes did strive,
Some so claimed by terror they took their own lives.

And once again, shadowy trapping occurred,
But now in addition strange voices were heard,
Somewhere in the darkness an argument raged,
To trust our fine heroes, or have their end staged!

As silence reconquered, all pondered their doom,
Then slowly a figure emerged from the gloom,
What then was this creature who inspired such dread?
A Ganoom named Mary! A mage of the Red!

Though still in two minds, her tale she related:
To battle the fiends, a wand she'd created,
The fruit of a lifetime studying the spell "Fear",
Its potence enormous, it had cost her dear.

For within the wand the great build-up of dread,
Could not be contained and into her had bled.
In time it developed a mind of its own,
A paranoid voice in her head which had grown!

The wand itself though, she no longer possessed,
T'was lost unto demons who'd fled to the west!
To see it return'd was her anxiety great,
The fear which possessed her, scared for its own fate.

So to these thieving fiends, our heroes gave chase,
And before long, a Kenku mage did they face,
His birdlike visage with malice contorted,
As with the wand his pursuers he thwarted.

But its operation was subtly refined,
And clumsily used could not harm a strong mind,
So whilst their comrades whose courage left them fled,
Aerill and Fealith killed that demon stone dead.

Now Mary's behaviour had not inspired trust,
Innocents had died to appease her fear's lust,
So to restore her power did not enthuse,
Our heroes, aware she might well it abuse,

But on their return they witnessed quite a sight,
- Mary and her "dark side" engaged in a fight!
Of thoughts, and words, good intentions and terror,
Of fear, she no longer wished to be bearer.

The terror inside her had other ideas,
But she fought, with all of her blood sweat and tears,
Until in the end, her life was exhausted,
In ending the fight, both of them had lost it.

And so, dear listeners, take this lesson to heart,
For near always there is a moral in art,
If thou woulds't wield fear, for reason ill or true,
Be wary lest that fear end up wielding you!