Part 26Dark World River of the Dead
Michael feels strange. Much less corporeal than before. He still has his inventory and he still can feel things tangibly, but..
Michael sees the body of the Privileged Worker who was sentenced and executed moments before. More importantly, Michael attempts to take its data card.
But it pops off his belt and lands in the pile of detritus.
He takes the data card, but a skeleton grabs his arm and attempts to pull him in. Michael manages to wrench away.
Michael touches the antenna structure to his right.
It scans him and he is teleported away. A Keeper appears before him, but it does not appear to be a Keeper of the Points of the Triangle. This appears to be a fourth.
Mike: You know my name!
Keeper of the Souls: Yes Michael, I've been expecting you.
Mike: What is the Underworld?
Keeper of the Souls: It is that place where the beings of the Dark World come when their bio-matter has expired. As the Keeper of the Souls, all those who die in the Dark World fall under my care.
Mike: What is my destiny?
Keeper of the Souls: You are destined to stand against the evil forces controlling the Dark World. You are charge with defeating the Ancients, and saving your own world in the process. Some of the people of the Dark World will aid you.
Mike: Who will aid me?
Keeper of the Souls: You will meet them in the course of your journey. They will extend the hand of friendship to you. But they will pay with their lives, and their souls will be remanded to me. Attend!
Michael walks to the stairs as a device rushes toward him. He ducks under it as it pours fluid into the River of the Dead, and rushes off. The Keeper of Souls reappears.
Mike: What in God's name was that?
Keeper of the Souls: The life fluids of the Keeper of the Light now flow in the River of the Dead. Her bio-matter expired not long after she met you in the portal.
Mike: Why, you bloodthirsty monster! How could you do such a terrible thing?
Keeper of the Souls: Her blood is on your hands, Michael. She sacrificed herself so that you could fulfill your destiny and defeat the Ancients. If you fail to do so, death will eventually reach you and pull you into its bloody depths.
Mike: Jeez, this place gives me the creeps!
Keeper of the Souls: You need not linger here, Michael. I have my work to attend to, and you have yours.
Mike: How do I get out of this hell-hole?
Keeper of the Souls: Climb the staircase. It leads back to the Dark World, near where the Ancients have erected their power generator. Go, and fulfill your destiny.
Michael reappears at the dead end and falls down. He decides to escape the Dark World for a moment.