Despite his proclamations, Simon Chase
Believed his operations compromised
Since his encounter with the ghostly wolf…
Though not for reasons some men might suspect.
The loss of men was inconvenient, true;
But flunkies? They were easily replaced.
Nor had the wolf disrupted business greatly.
No, what upset him the most was the fear –
The unexpected trembling in his bed,
The furtive glances cast back o’er his shoulder,
The time lost while he double-checked his doors.
He ground his teeth and pounded his clenched fist
In anger. Something had to change… right now.
Soon after he met with the Cardinal,
Chase returned to his office. There, behind
A secret panel, Simon kept a box.
Inside that box, kept under lock and key,
There was a book, its leather cover cracked
With age and scribed with ancient runes. He felt
It almost hummed with some unspoken power –
Power so repulsive yet desirable,
It drew him like a moth to open flames.
He trembled with anticipation, hope,
And dread. The power of the ages, right here,
Awaiting his command! The power to free
Himself from fear; the power to make a slave
Of those who would not serve him willingly;
The power to kill his enemies at will –
Destruction of the wolf was in his hands!
The price, however, might be high… too high.
It took a man experienced with all
The proper wards and guards and rituals
To get the right results… and yet survive.
His book recorded all the darkest arts
Man ever knew – at least, survived to tell –
And only mindless fools tried summoning
The entities it named without a priest.
But now his priest was dead, an early victim
Of the wolf. He’d have to work his own spells.
He wondered… is it really worth the risk?
The pages throbbed beneath his fingertips.