“Nathan, who do you think has the ability to turn a person into a puppet like that?” Aulus asked.
“I don’t know. I can’t think of anyone in the Order — ”
“Exactly. In the Order. What about outside the Order?”
Nathan looked at Aulus hard. “You’re not talking about a renegade Dominus, are you?”
“No, I’m not. I’m talking about a different society altogether.”
“But the only other society would be the Necromancers. We wiped them out centuries ago!” Nathan said.
“What if the Order is wrong about their fate?” Aulus stood up and began pacing in the tiny room. “What if there were more of them, and better hidden, than we thought? Nathan, that man today was dead and walking. He was undead, a Soulless.”
Nathan did not want to admit that the Necromancers might still be around. If they were, the world was a lot more dangerous than he wanted to believe. “But, Aulus, how have they remained hidden all these years? They would have died out years ago… unless you think they’ve finally discovered the secrets of immortality.”
“Who says they haven’t?”
Donald S. Crankshaw has published short stories in Daily Science Fiction, Aoife’s Kiss, and Coach’s Midnight Diner. He lives in Boston. Author photo by Kristin Janz.
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