Glorious Sacrifice

A puff of yellow, sour-smelling smoke erupted in the center of the carefully drawn pentagram. As it began to clear, Gloria noticed a tall form in the middle of it. She watched a lean, red-skinned demon in a navy-blue suit step forward. He was shorter than she initially thought; a pair of twisting black horns made up the difference. He surprised her with a courteous, customer-service smile.

“Hello,” he said with a surprisingly smooth, deep voice. “Let’s bargain. What can I do for you? Riches? Power?” The yellow smoke dissipated completely and the demon let his eyes roam up and down the frail woman with frazzled, sickly green hair. “A sandwich?” he chuckled. Gloria shook her head frantically.

“Our planet is in danger,” she said. She took a moment to glance out the window at the darkening sky, then she looked back with even more panic in her eyes. “Please help us. You can take my soul to Hell right now. I don’t want anything for me; save the Earth.” The demon narrowed his eyes at her.

“That’s a new one,” he said. “I’m…,” he faltered for a moment. “I’m not sure we can do that. Give me a second,” he said. Yellow smoke filled the room again.

“Damnit,” Gloria mumbled. She ran to the window.  In the distance, she saw dozens of skeletons marching toward her house. Gloria sat on the summoning ritual for years, she never felt the need to until she saw the news that day.

Thousands of black portals opened in the sky across the world and rained skeletons. Immortal, unstoppable, murderous skeletons. Gloria watched soldier after soldier fall in front of the walking bones and realized humanity couldn’t win without major help. It was an easy decision to trade her soul for the safety of humanity.

Yellow smoke filled the room again and Gloria whirled away from the window. The demon smiled.

“Good news. There’s no rule against it, so your bargain is accepted. Now, what exactly am I saving the Earth from?” Gloria pointed at the muted TV. It showed a giant black hole open over New York city with skeletons pouring out of it.

In Gloria’s mind, this man was a demon from the deepest levels of Hell. He had to have seen unspeakable horrors that she could not begin to imagine. She was surprised when the demon’s eyes opened as wide as saucers.

“OH HELL NO!” he shouted. He walked to the window behind Gloria and looked out. The skeletons were almost to the house.

“Sorry lady, Hell isn’t equipped to deal with Ballisea. This Earth is already gone; I can’t do anything.”

“You.. can’t or you won’t?” Gloria asked. Tears pooled in the corners of her eyes. “If you let humanity perish who is going to make deals with you? Think of all those innocent souls going to Heaven, you’re losing out.”

“Lady, -“

“Gloria,” she corrected him. The demon glanced out the window, then back to her.

Gloria,” he said. “You’re misunderstanding a lot of things about how the universe works. You’ve impressed me,” he said. “That’s not an easy thing to do. Humanity isn’t dead, this isn’t the only Earth. How about I take you to another Earth, free of charge. No bargain, just a simple ride. You’ll get to keep living a life with other humans on a perfectly good Earth that isn’t conquered by Ballisea. Decide fast, because I’m leaving.”

“Are you scared?” she asked. The demon did not hesitate to answer honestly.

“Terrified. You don’t know who she is or what she can do; trust me. You don’t want to find out,” he glanced out the window again. “I’m out in five seconds,” he said.

She?” Gloria asked. “A person is doing this?” The demon nodded quickly, then spoke.

“Four,” he said. Gloria shook her head.

“Leave already, coward. I’m not abandoning my Earth.” The demon laughed as yellow smoke filled the room again. After he was gone, Gloria heard his voice echo with laughter.

“You’re going to die,” he said. Gloria’s front door crashed open and skeletons started to march in toward. her. She ran toward them to stand out of the smoke and yelled at them.

“I WANT TO TALK TO BALLISEA!” she shouted. Almost instantly, she heard a heavy, dramatic sigh behind her.

“Of course it’s you, it’s always you,” the voice said. Gloria whirled around and saw a tall pale with twisting white horns. “What is it this time?” she asked in a bored voice.

“What do you mean, this time?” Gloria asked. Ballisea gave a half shrug.

“I conquer a lot of Earths and run into your Zeros annoyingly often. You’re usually trying to convince me to leave your Earth alone,” she smiled and winked at Gloria. “Hasn’t happened yet,” she added.

“How can I convince you to leave this Earth alone?” Gloria asked.

“You can’t,” Ballisea said. “But I’m already bored of killing you; off you go.” Gloria felt the floor disappear under her and she sunk like a rock. She landed on a crowded beach with a golden sun high in the sky and families playing in the sand and water. A cool breeze blew across her skin. She heard a voice that seemed to come from all around her, as if she were surrounded by speakers.

“Have fun while you can…,” Ballisea whispered. “I might change my mind later.”

Glorious Awakening

“She’s new,” Carlos narrowed his focus on the green-haired woman that wasn’t there moments ago. If he had not been scanning the crowd intently, he wouldn’t have noticed her. He counted beachgoers from his seat at a wooden picnic table. So far, he found most of the children from the restaurant matched to different parents. At one moment he looked down to jot a number; when he looked back up an older woman in a forest-green swimsuit moved through the crowd.

Carlos looked left and right along the stretch of beach in confusion. He paid very close attention to the crowd and there was nowhere she could have come from. Not only did she seemingly materialize out of thin air, but she also wore a green suit. The only green suit in the sea of  32 red, 33 white, and 33 blue swimsuits. He hopped off the wooden bench and walked toward her.

Alright. How do I sound NOT crazy?”  Carlos wondered as he took slow steps through the sand. He never approached a stranger in his 23 years of life; he had no idea what to say. “Just get her to look around,” he decided to let her notice the pattern of people. The woman stopped at a less crowded area. She unfurled a beach towel and Carlos briefly wondered where it came from. He had not noticed her carrying anything. When she sat on the towel with a small novel, he conceded he may have been focusing on her suit too much to notice anything else.

His nerves fluttered wildly in his gut as he drew closer; but, he was determined to find out more about why he saw the same group of people everywhere. He had no idea what to say even as he reached her towel.

“HI!” he panicked and blurted out the greeting. The green-haired woman jumped in surprise and looked up from her book. Somehow her emerald eyes registered even more surprise when she saw him, she immediately hopped to her feet.

“Hi,” she smiled. “You surprised me a bit, I didn’t know anyone else was here.”

“Well…,” Carlos opened his arms to gesture at the crowd around them. It seemed like a good opportunity to get her to start noticing them. “…they’re here,” he said. The woman giggled as if he told a joke.

“I’m Glorianna, but you can call me Glory,” she extended a delicate hand; Carlos shook it.

“Carlos,” he said with a smile.

“Join me,” Glory gestured at the towel, then sat down. Carlos did. “I’m a Librarian,” she held up the small novel. It was a well-worn paperback with a blank purple cover. “What about you?”

“Programmer,” Carlos replied. At least, he was before he noticed the repeated strangers the day before. He did not return to work after lunch and didn’t even call in today. He was not sure he still had a job and even less sure that it mattered.

“Oh!” Glory’s face lit up. “What’s your specialization?” she asked.

“Java I guess?” Carlos shrugged. “I don’t know if I’d call it a specialization, but it’s my favorite.”

“Oh,” Glory replied with a trace of confusion in her voice. “I don’t think I’ve heard of that one, it must be a Fragmented Spec.”

“Fragmented Spec? What do you mean?”

“The AlterNet is shaped by the players, and naturally that creates a lot of non-standard classes. So, any class or spec not approved by Dana Sharp is considered ‘Fragmented’. The only thing it really means is that you can’t use it in tournaments. So…,” Glory smiled. “…what can you do with Java?”

Carlos stared at her in silence while he organized his thoughts. She said a lot of things that he did not understand; but, she spoke as if he did. The name she used, Dana Sharp, stood out the most; she used the name as casually as someone using the president’s name.

“Who’s Dana Sharp?” he decided to ask about the name instead of the phrase, ‘AlterNet’. It was Glory’s turn to stare at him silently. She put her hand on the paperback.

“Deep Study,” Gloria whispered. Her green eyes began to glow with a soft purple light that Carlos noticed, even in broad daylight. After a moment of purple, her eyes widened and the glow dissipated.

“Wow,” she grinned. “You’re amazing!” She hopped to her feet and reached down to pull Carlos up too. “Come on! You have to meet my guild leader, please!” He let her help him up, but he didn’t move to follow her right away.

“What’s going on? What did you just do with your eyes?” Glory responded with giggles.

“It’s too much to explain right now, but uh,” she glanced around the beach. “Look around you, notice anything weird about the people here?” she asked.

“YES!” Carlos shouted. “I noticed you didn’t fit the pattern so I wanted to ask you if you noticed it. I’m not crazy?” he asked. The worry crossed his mind several times. Glory shook her head.

“You’re not crazy. They’re NPCs.”

“Like in a game?” Carlos asked.

“Yes. Somehow, you woke up,” she said.

“Woke up? What do you mean?”

“You were one of them, now you’re not. I’ve heard it happens, but I never thought it actually did. This is so neat!”

“I’m not an NPC,” Carlos said with a shake of his head. “I have memories! A childhood!”

“I’m sure you do, but do you ever think about them? Do you ever try to relive the memories or are you just confident they exist?”  Carlos had not thought about his younger days in a long time. When he tried at that moment, he suddenly and randomly remembered being excited for “Picture Day” at school. He realized the kids he’d seen the last couple of days were also his classmates.

“What’s your favorite color?” Glory asked suddenly.

“Green,” Carlos replied with divided attention. Glory smiled.

“Mine too! That’s why I bought a green suit,” she looked him in the eye then her gaze traveled down. “So, why did you buy a red one?” His school picture crystallized in his mind at that moment, and he knew she was telling the truth. He clearly remembered being his own classmate.

Glorious Revelation

“I’m taking a pizza!” Gloria yelled over her shoulder. She paused at the door to make sure her manager replied.

“Did you pay or is it coming out of your check?” The short, bald man peeked out of his office to ask.

“Take it out of my check,” she replied with a smile.

“I’ll take care of it,” the manager nodded and disappeared into his office again. They both knew he would conveniently forget. The manager volunteering to ‘take care of it’ was his way of taking responsibility.

“Thanks, Gary. See ya tomorrow,” Gloria waved and walked out through the back door. The evening air felt cool against her skin and she smiled to herself. She looked forward to the short walk through the park.

Gloria lived within walking distance of work, and she was a fan of simple pleasures. The cool weather was perfect for sitting in the park and enjoying a pizza. She reached her favorite spot, near a giant fountain, and sat to watch the sky. She loved watching the colors change while the sunset.

After admiring the purple sky for several seconds she turned her attention to the pizza in front of her. As her eyes moved from the sky to the table she noticed a bright blue glow in her peripheral vision. She turned to find the source of the glow, but it was gone. A young woman with short, black, spiky hair sat by the fountain, in the general area Gloria thought she saw the glow. The stranger wore a long light blue trench coat and white fingerless gloves.

“Huh.” Gloria did a mental double-take. When she sat down there was no one else near the fountain. She sat close enough that she would have heard approaching footsteps. But she had no idea where this woman came from. She shrugged to herself and grabbed a slice of pepperoni pizza.

“You sure?” the young woman asked. She seemed to be talking to the fountain; Gloria did not see anyone else around nor a phone in her hand. The woman must have realized she spoke loudly because she looked up from the fountain to scan the park. Her eyes landed on Gloria, the only person that might have heard her, and the stranger smiled. “We’re gonna do it. Get set up,” the woman said to the fountain, then she stood and walked to Gloria’s table.

“Hi, I’m Jenny,” she said. Gloria smiled.

“Hi, Jenny. I’m Gloria, want a slice?” Gloria pushed the pizza box toward Jenny.

“Really? If you’re offering, I won’t say no,” Jenny warned that she would happily accept the gift. Gloria nodded.

“I’m offering,” she confirmed.

“Yeah!” Jenny sat down and grabbed a slice for herself. “Thank you!”

“Were you making a wish?” Gloria asked between bites. She tilted her head toward the fountain. “I heard you talking,” she felt the need to explain the question. Jenny shook her head.

“Nah, talking to a friend of mine,” Jenny said.

“In the fountain?”

“Yep,” Jenny nodded. “What’s your full name?” she asked suddenly.

“Gloria Islas,” she answered without thinking. Jenny chuckled to herself while nodding.

“I knew it.”

“You know me?” Gloria asked. She’d never seen this woman before. Jenny shook her head.

“No, sorry. that was vague. I just meant every Gloria I’ve met was a very kind person. And you offered a complete stranger some of your pizza,” she shrugged. “You’re continuing the trend.”

“Thanks,” Gloria smiled. She did not think anything of sharing food, but she felt glad that “Glorias” had a good reputation. Jenny finished her first slice but did not reach for another. Instead, she sat up straighter and her eyes turned serious.

“Gloria, what would you say if I told you that the world you’re in is a simulation?” she asked.

“There’s no shortage of conspiracy theories. Simulation, flat Earth, lizard people…,” Gloria shrugged. “None of it affects me, so I don’t care all that much. Sorry.”

“What if I prove it to you?” Jenny asked.

“Okay. Convince me,” Gloria said. She doubted the woman would prove anything, but she knew there was entertainment value in watching her try.

“No problem, how ’bout a dupe glitch?” Jenny placed both hands flat on the picnic table. The black spikes on her head began to glow with bright blue light. The same blue glow flowed out from under her hands like water. The blue light spread across the surface of the table and enveloped it completely. When she was satisfied, Jenny stood up and pulled her hands upward. A blue glowing outline in the shape of the table remained stuck to the bottom of her hands. She stepped away from the table, turned, and placed the new table on the ground next to it. She wiggled her fingers as if typing something, then she lifted her hands from the blue outline. It remained in place and filled in as a perfect copy of the table where Gloria sat.

“Uhhhhh….” Gloria looked at the new table, then to Jenny, then back to the new table again. “Crap, you actually convinced me,” she sighed. “Now what?”

“Now you get to have fun,” Jenny smiled. She reached into the interior of her trench coat and pulled out a box of playing cards. She opened it and pulled out a single thing, transparent, glassy rectangle. Gloria noticed the box was full of them. “This is a node. It’ll let you interface with the simulation.” As Jenny explained a large white and orange butterfly landed on the sleeve of her coat.  “Done already? You’re getting faster,” Jenny nodded at the butterfly.

“Gloria this is Flynn. Flynn, say hi to Gloria.” The butterfly flapped its wings, then it sank into Jenny’s sleeve. The light blue color of her coat began to ripple and shimmer like water. Flynn flattened himself to become a design on her jacket, then he changed shape. Gloria watched the butterfly morph into a white koi fish with an orange dot on its head, then the fish swam up Jenny’s sleeve as it would in any body of water. The fish disappeared behind her back. Jenny shrugged.

“Sorry, he’s shy. Anyway, I guess we’re done here.” Jenny gave Gloria the node, then she emptied out several more into her hand and placed them on the table. “Use that one first. After you’ve gotten the hang of it, you can hand these out to some of your friends.”

“Done here? Done doing what? Where are you going?”

“Finn was reprogramming the simulation to give,” Jenny pointed at the node in Gloria’s hand. “the nodes access. I’m just passing through, this isn’t my Earth.”

“I thought his name was Flynn?” Gloria asked. Her mind was searching for any cracks in the woman’s story so that she could deny living in a simulation. She focused so much on the name her mind glossed over the mention of another Earth.

“He’s shy and fussy,” Jenny chuckled. “He likes the name Flynn when he’s a butterfly, but he likes the name Finn when he’s a fish. Anyway, I better get moving. Just a heads up. I have a friend that’s going to want to meet you, so she’ll probably show up one day. Her name’s Dirge. She’s easy to recognize, she’s got orange eyes.” Jenny started walking away.

“Why me?”

“Long story. She’ll explain it to you I’m sure. Have fun!” Jenny raised her hand part way and wiggled her fingers at the air. A tall black portal opened silently, then she jumped in.

Zero Glory

“Gloria Ybarra?” A woman with shoulder-length chestnut hair asked the room. Almost two dozen men and women sat in a bright waiting room on uncomfortable plastic chairs. The brown-haired woman stepped out of her office every hour to call another name.

“Here.” A sixteen-year-old girl with dark brown bun stood as she raised her hand. She hefted her denim backpack over her shoulder and approached the woman that called her.

“Hi, I’m Melody,” the woman said and shook Gloria’s hand. “Come in and have a seat.” Melody ushered Gloria through the door and into a white office. She first noticed a depression in the center of the room filled with what smelled like fresh soil. Behind the soil sat a glass desk with a monitor and keyboard on top of it. One char sat behind the desk and one chair sat in front. Gloria saw nothing else in the room other than white walls and a white tile floor. Melody walked around the soil pit to the seat behind the desk. Gloria sat in front of her and dropped her bag to the floor.

“First of all, congratulations on being selected,” Melody smiled. “As you can imagine we had quite a list to sort through.”

“No kidding! That roller derby match was amazing,” Gloria smiled and inched forward to the edge of her seat. “I’m sure tons of people rushed to sign up.”

“It’s a shame the Luchadoras lost though,” Melody sighed. “I hope they’ll do better in their next match.” Gloria nodded eagerly.

“They definitely will!” Melody smiled then pulled a clipboard out of a desk drawer and handed it to Gloria.

“Let’s get started on your character. First, pick a class,” Melody said. Gloria glanced down at the paper on the clipboard and noticed a long list. “If you have any questions, please ask. Unfortunately, you can only make one character, so it’s important you’re satisfied.” Gloria read down the list.

“What’s a craftsman?” she asked.

“That’s the tradeskill class. If you pick that one you get to pick one of the trades,” Melody handed Gloria a small slip of paper with a short list.

“We can use trade skills in derby?” Gloria’s eyes widened and the corners of her lips lifted slightly. Melody nodded.

“They can be very useful. In fact, both teams at the match had a different craftsman with them. A blacksmith on one team and a programmer on the other.” Gloria looked down at the list again.

“Paladin,” she said. Melody nodded, then typed information into her computer.

“Now pick a race. Most paladins pick the tougher races. Troll, ogre, dwarf, slime, minotaur, or one of the elementals,” Melody suggested.

“I want to be an angel,” Gloria said.

“Nice choice. Now choose a soul. It can be any of the races, or any of the ones in the little box,” Melody explained. She pointed to a small boxed list on one side of the clipboard.

“Is there a bonus for doubling up? Like what if I go angel / angel?”

“There can be. Some skills work better the more of a “type” there is nearby. Any skill that benefits from angels in the area would count twice; once for your race and once for your soul. But that can also backfire because you count twice for enemy skills also.” Gloria stared at the list for several seconds. Finally, she made her decision with a nod.

“Light elemental.”

“Okay,” Melody typed more into her computer. “Good to go.” Melody stood from her seat and walked around her desk to the soil pit. “I’m going to need you to lay down,” she pointed at the dirt. “You can customize your appearance, and you need to complete the tutorial. After that, you’ll get a suit and officially be in the beta program.” Gloria stood and walked to the edge of the pit.

“Should I take off my shoes or anything?’ Melody shook her head. Gloria stepped into the soil and sunk a bit. She took careful steps to the center, then crouched and shifted her weight to her hands to lay down.

“Since this is your first time logging in you’ll get a notification about connecting to the other versions of you. In the-” Melody started to explain, but Gloria interrupted her.

“Other versions of me?” she sat up to ask, with a puzzled look on her face. Melody nodded.

“Alternate universes,” she replied with a shrug. “We have about 300 of you on record, but we only started keeping track when Ms. Sharp took over the AlterNet. There may be more. Once you set it up you’ll have access to a private chat channel with the other yous.”

“Whooooaa,” Gloria grew giddy at the thought and threw herself backward into the soil. “I’m ready!”

“As I was saying; in the interest of time, you should ignore the prompt for now. With as many dopplegangers as you have, you should set aside a couple of hours to do it.” Gloria sat up again in a hurry.

“WAIT! Can I know what they are?”

“No,” Melody replied with a straight face. “However, I will mention that more than half chose an angel as either a race or a soul.”

“Awww,” Gloria fell back into the dirt again. “Are any of them double angels?” Melody shook her head.

“Not anymore. There was one on record, but she hasn’t logged in in a while.”

“Okay. Now I’m ready. What do I do?” Gloria felt something tickle her right hand. Then her upper left arm, then all over her body. She looked down and saw dozens of tiny black spiders crawling out of the soil.

“Ignore the spiders,” Melody replied.

Glorious Purpose

Sunday Free Write [Link to post.] (8-12-18)


“Hey,” Dread called Dirge’s attention. The two girls were on their way out of the Schoolyard to Jelly-Jim’s place. “Glory seemed cool.” She wanted to console Dirge but did not know enough about her or Glory to do it effectively. The shorter girl with raven curls nodded silently as they walked through the public square. After they passed through the crowded hub Dirge turned right instead of the left turn Dread expected.


“Did you get lost or is it me? I thought Jelly_Jim’s was that way,” Dread pointed down a stone road to their left.


“Do you remember Glory promoting me to Quartermaster before she died?” Dirge asked. Dread nodded. “She asked me to do something for and I need to get something from her shop to do it.”


“Okay.” Dread nodded and let Dirge lead the way. They walked a few more steps in silence before either of them spoke again.


“She was the first Zero I thought I could be friends with,” Dirge said quietly. “Ballisea said your mom was a Zero, right?”


“Yeah,” Dread nodded. “After I found Ballisea’s orbs, I hoped I’d find my way back home again. Even if I did, it would be to see my dad. My mom wouldn’t have lived that long.” Dirge stopped walking in front of a shop and walked into it. Dread tried to follow her, but any time she tried to cross the threshold nanos formed a barrier to stop her.


“Hey,” she called Dirge. The curly haired girl turned around in the shop surprised to see Dread still outside.


“OH! Sorry, the shop’s still closed,” Dirge said. She brought up a translucent square in front of her and swiped through it a few times. “Okay, try it now,” she said. Dread reach a hand up and pushed it past the door, then the rest of her body stepped inside the shop.


“So she gave you the shop?” Dread asked. She glanced around at all the instruments hanging from the walls and decorating the display table.


“Nah. I don’t have time to run it anyway. But she did ask me to find someone to give it to.” Dirge walked around the sales counter and crouched out of sight to search the lower shelf.


“Whoa. How’re you going to pick?” Dread asked. Dirge rose from behind the counter with a Node in her hand.


“With this!” Dirge inserted the Node into a slot on the sales counter. The surface of the counter vibrated slightly and then changed from sturdy wood to near-invisible smooth glass. Small-print text appeared in rows on the glassy surface. The text stretched from one edge of the counter to the other, and top to bottom. Dread realized the text was a long list of names.


“Is that her friend’s list?” Dread asked, but Dirge smiled and shook her head. She placed a hand on the counter and swiped to her left. The display moved, all the rows of names disappeared to the left while more came in from the right. Dirge swiped it again several times.


“It’s her Zeroes. The Alternet lets Zeroes form a group chat with themselves and she kept their info on this Node.”


“You have to give the shop to one of them? That looks easy, there’re thousands to choose from. We can do that before we go back to Jelly_Jim if you want,” Dread offered, but Dirge shook her head again, still smiling brightly.


“No way, I’m gonna take my time and do it right for her.” Dirge sounded excited. “But, we do need to make a stop before we go back to Jelly_Jim.” Dread shrugged.


“Okay, where to?” Dread asked, but Dirge was already half-way through a pitch black portal. Realizing she wouldn’t get an answer Dread followed her into the dark. She recognized the quaint house waiting for her on the other side.


“UNCLE VEGAS!” Dirge cupped her hands around her mouth and yelled toward the house. After a few seconds a short man with a blue mohawk opened the front door, then the screen door.


“Hey shortcake, why all the fuss?” Dirge dashed from the yard to run up the steps, then she leaped towards Vegas to wrap her arms around him.


“I FOUND MY CARROT!” she yelled while squeezing him. The attack hug caught him by surprise, but he settled into it quickly and returned the hug. They danced back and forth in joy while Dread approached up the steps.


“No foolin’?  That’s great!” Vegas smiled at the girl.


“When did you find a carrot?” Dread asked. She did not know what to make of the sudden joy, but she wanted to know why Dirge was so happy. Dirge shook her head.


“Not A carrot. MY carrot. It’s something Vegas taught me, and he made me promise I’d tell him when I found it,” Dirge explained.  Dread shrugged and looked at Vegas. He held up a finger to get her to wait, then he stepped inside the house. He returned after several seconds holding a small wooden rod, string, and a carrot. He held the stick up horizontally and the carrot fell partway until it pulled the string taut.


“A carrot on a stick is used to keep animals moving forward.” He held the rod above his head to dangle the carrot in front of his face, then he walked forward trying to bite it. “They’ll never reach it, but they don’t know that. A carrot is something that gets you moving, without worrying about the outcome. My daddy told me that if I found my carrot I’d have a life goal to work towards,” Vegas explained, then he lowered the stick. Dread looked back at Dirge.


“I don’t get it.”


“Might be easier to explain it with an example,” Vegas said. He also turned his attention to Dirge. “You came all this way, what’s your carrot?” Dirge pulled Glory’s Node from her pocket. She held it up to show Dread and smiled at her.


“I want to meet Glory and be friends with her. As many as I can.”