Beyond the Darkside, 29-3 and 4

Beyond the Darkside

Aldric was a man of strong passions. Milquetoast men did not accumulate wealth and power. If there was a hallmark to Aldric’s leadership style, it was that he was an efficient planner with a keen eye for the moment to act. His negotiations often turned on some key change in the economy or the opinions of the masses. The fact that he was the puppeteer hiding in the shadow, pulling the strings of people and governments alike, was known by no one. He compartmentalized everything and strung together seemingly random actions that turned the table in his favor. They say that in Chess a good player can see three or four moves ahead and that a master can see far beyond that. Aldric treated the moon like his chessboard, but his control over the pieces was so dominant that he could see the game all the way to its conclusion.

At least he could before the accident.

“Lights on. Fifty percent illumination.” Aldric squinted as the room grew brighter. “Shower. I need a shower.” He stood up and groaned. He was not sore, but standing felt like a burden. Walking through the air was like swimming through gelatin. It was another curious side effect of the accident. He did not tell the doctors, and his own tests proved inconclusive. He struggled in silence. Maybe it was some sort f penance. He did not know and did not care. His life was different now and he was not about to stop fighting.

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