I'm ready with my weapons - my battered mace, my re-booted armour - who knows whether the Sentinels from beneath Greyskull will view me as hostile? Though only the Sorceress could have saved me, brought me here, placed me within the cyber-womb, I have seen nor heard no sign from her. (Cyber-womb!? Aye! - that strange bed, an artifact of the Ancients! But it was once not functional... See, my memory is slowly returning... But what yet remains missing of it?)
Someone had attended to my needs upon being… re-born… the food and drink, my repaired armour. However... as I pass through the portals and halls of Greyskull, there is no sense of any inhabitant – yet it must be her!
So what am I afraid of? The answer to my question - why did she save me? A shameful thought passes through my mind - could it be that she loves me? - but I dismiss it. She chose me to raise her daughter and to bring Adam to her due to my skills and integrity and nothing more. No, no, nothing more. Yet, now, she has also given me life... But why else would a woman love a man if not for his strength of character? Though it is also true that I am not a tender man and a woman as sublime and majestic as the Sorceress would surely not seek romance? Again I shake these recurring thoughts from my mind - the thoughts of a young man, hot blooded - this young man that I am now! Must I struggle with the chastity and loneliness she imposed upon me, once again?
Ah! My youth torments me - I do not feel the calm control of age, but the burnings of lust - lust for life! My forefathers’ wisdom is proven once more – any blessing can become a curse. But my lofty thoughts are interrupted - not by a present danger, not even by fear of these hallowed halls, but by the image of another beauty, a dangerous beauty. She comes to my mind unbidden, unwanted; the harsh lines of her face, her strong nose and broad, devouring mouth, those piercing eyes, her lovely yellow skin and long, strong, supple limbs. I try to summon some sense of disgust, but my body denies it. Did not my brief death release me from the humiliating consequences of her love philter? No - I have the same body and it denies the course of my mind; blood rushing, my manliness conquers my spirit of denial. Desire moves me and I ache, ache for the evil witch of Snake Mountain. Evil! I remind myself of her terrible, merciless power - I have and will drive her from my mind once more. Aye, there is conflict in my heart, it hurts me now - the love and disgust, intermingled, painful - but it is still the only way to fight the power of that spell. Ambivalence is written all over my feelings for her - love and hate meet in a turmoil of hissing cloud, as fire and ice do, fogging my mind...Ah! How I have wished for death!
Alas… I am tormented by these powerful women, their pawn. Did I offend some sleeping goddess? Yet I recall that the witch failed to control the effects of that sorcerous drug upon herself. For a moment I wish her dead, but I sigh and then withdraw the wish. Aye, our love affair is over, but the grief and uncertainty and desire is not.
I cannot help but suddenly wonder - Does she still live? For how long have I been re-gestating?
I shake my head. I am Man-At-Arms, warrior lord! - There is no room for these yearnings! If I cannot control these boyish impulses, I should wish myself slain once more! Sick, I am sick to my heart! I am not rid of the burdens of life - but yet forced to live it all over again! And yet, whatever reason I am resurrected haunts me - for what purpose is this!? Life already torments me with its burning desires, here, deep in the terrifying corridors of this indestructible fortress. It reminds me of war-time, when one dreams of women after a day of slaughter... I should offer a prayer of penance to the Green Goddess -
But what is that? A slight sound - and then silence. My flesh is all raised like the haunches of a dog - some threat is close. Let it not be a Sentinel, those strange and prehistoric automatons that some how continue to exist within these crushing walls!
I pause for some time, waiting, watching, but nothing comes of it. I must be too nervous, or else the Castle plays tricks with my mind. I am lost. Greyskull is an oubliette. I do not understand why I am allowed to wander about in this way. Nothing has barred my path, nothing hampers me but my memory, and the burning rush of feelings as my soul keeps creeping through my tingling nerves... I put my hand to my helmet, the exo-cortex, so famous that the Eternos Guard styled their helms after it… I feel incomplete... and I recall that, upon discovering it in my youth, the symbiotic process of adjusting to wearing it took time... Took all my life! Aye, it is a store of such wisdom – too much wisdom! A interior space of demented dimensions...!
And yet, the crushing weight of the Castle continues to bare down upon me - this fortress is the most terrifying place... And yet again, I should be thankful for this new life. Should I call out her name? Surely she is aware of me?
There! Another scraping sound, slight and brief. My back is to the wall and I look for cover as I draw my pistol. The stalker cannot be far. I edge over toward an alcove and press myself into it. In the gloom I cannot make out what shadows moves from the flicker of the torches, and what shadows move with a purpose. Again, nothing comes of it but I wait for longer now, controlling my breathing, primed for sudden attack...
It must be an illusion of this place, keeping me fearful, on edge. I must find a way out! The weight of this place, I feel suffocated, a pressure on my chest, my head!
Oh, I know, I know! This place, it is sacred, it is here that the Secrets that almost brought the Ancients to war with the gods are held... It is here that tyrants throw their armies, their explosives, their sorcery - and so fail! How could anyone bare to be in this oppressive place for long? It warps the mind, distorts perception - and what a terrible temptation of power!
Another pang of love - I feel sorrow for the Sorceress, trapped within these mountainous walls, with no escape and no end, until… Until what!? I don’t recall…
I still my thoughts. I watch and listen as the shadows wave about me, like seaweed within an ocean lit by the twilight. Waiting.