As they sat in the graveyard awaiting the return of vampire Conrad, Poxig began to importune the obscure black mage about his life. They started a fire and awaited nightfall. The suzukibs were making the loudest noise in the trees, and the bats would have to eat them for supper. Neither of them expected the vampire to emerge from his sepulcher, but they would be damned if they wouldn’t wait for dusk.
“How did you become a student of the dark side?” asked Poxig.
Lakfi paused and tipped his wizard’s cap. “This is a strange question, for I might as well ask why your skin is green. Of course, you had no part in your physical characteristics, since they were determined by Master Control. Many people such as I are born for the dark side. We have never known anything else. But even such as I cannot deny that our continued mastery of a gift given to us at birth is more or less up to us.”
“And the wizard’s cap? Is that standard issue for all wizards in the Naughright guild?” asked Poxig.
“Black mage, mind you!” Lakfi chortled. ” I haven’t yet earned my stripes as a wizard, and so I am still learning the dark arts. I am by no means a master wizard, but then if I was, there would have been no chance of me coming on this quest. You would have had to pay a hefty fine, the likes of which I daresay you would not have been able to afford. But to your question; yes, the cap is standard. But it was given to me by a master wizard who had known Darxon before he fully surrendered to the Chaos.”
The name made Poxig flinched. Of course, the Chaos was the nefarious evil force more powerful than anyone could reckon with. Even the greatest of knights-errant would tremble before such an evil. It was theorized that this force had come before the dawn of modern era in Illyria, 2,000 years ago in the Temple of Fiends.
“What was the name of your teacher?” questioned the humble elf.
“Black mages never can give the names of their teachers to those outside the craft. It’s against our protocol. But know this, my young elven friend, not all who practice black magic are outside the realm of Master Control. There are, in fact, chapters in the Dark Wizard’s manual which not even the worst of us would dare to touch, since we know that it would irrevocably transform our likeness to that of the Orc-heraldry. Most of us are simply trying to channel the black magic against the enemies of Master Control, and not for our own benefit. We have much in common with the Red Mages, and more than you would know,” Lakfi said.
“But surely you know the wellspring of life comes from the light warriors?” Poxig offensively asked.
“Ah yes, but we can no sooner deny our affinity for the dark side than you can turn your hair white. You only have an advantage over those who practice dark arts if you know how they think. Whereas a true friend would never betray, the wicked warrior will destroy his closest companion who comes too near his worldly pelf of gold. We come here to vanquish the vampire, but you must know that vampires will only attack innocent victims that they are sure of killing.”
“Then, we may be waiting in this graveyard in vain,” added Poxig.
“Exactly,” said Lakfi.
But at that moment, a dark form emerged from behind the stone obelisk. Then a voice was heard.
“I’ve been waiting for you, Lakfi,” said the voice.
“Carl Conrad, I presume,” returned Lakfi.
“Ah yes, it is I,” said Conrad. “And you have spoken correctly about our kind. We vampires never fight a battle that we can’t win.”
“Then, be prepared for the worst, for I have no other aim than to vanquish these hosts of night!” shouted Lakfi.
But before he could finish his sentence, the vampire changed into a bat and flew away.