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The darkness ahead grew, looming over Malika like a physical presence. She couldn't see it, but she knew it was there all the same. She rushed toward to it blindly, cutting down any and all of the Lesser Dead who dared cross her path. Morduth burned hot with blue fire, rising off the blade like an inferno of destruction. Many of the Lessers began to draw back, understanding what doom awaited them if they approached this fierce warrior of a swordmaiden now.
And then Malika was in the presence of pure evil. She still couldn't see the Greater Dead before her, not exactly. It was a dark shadow to her eyes, especially in the black of night, and somehow she knew without understanding how that this creature's roots descended all the way down to Ashmar. It was a foe like none other she had ever faced, and suddenly the force of her uncertainty slammed into her mind, claws of cold fear gripping her heart.
What have I just gotten myself into? she thought. And then everything flared into brilliant light around her.
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