- "Rise, Grand Mandator."
Grand Mandator Taev Vosaetiur stood from his genuflection and placed his hands behind his back. The Emperor stood before a balcony on the pinnacle of the Imperial Palace on Orbispira, with night slowly tipping on the horizon. The shadows of distant starscrapers cast shadows on the city below as if trying in vain to reach the vast Palace. As the sun slowly set in the horizon, the sky was bathed in swirls of flaming red and purple.
- "Must I attend to every matter of your attention, Grand Mandator?"
- "My Lord Emperor, I am sorr-"
- "Reserve your apologies for when they are necessary, Grand Mandator," the Emperor said coldly.
Vosaetiur was unfazed. "I thought it prudent to appraise you of my opposition to your plan for the traitor."
The Emperor sat on his throne, steepled his fingers and brought them to his snout. He exhaled with purpose. "Provide me with a satisfactory explanation."
- "He cannot be trusted, my liege."
- "An obvious reply. One that conveys nothing. Do you think I have not considered the matter, Grand Mandator? Considered it carefully?"
Vosaetiur crossed his robed arms in front of him. A bold display before the Emperor, knowledgable that he did not appreciate sycophantic behaviour. "Nevertheless, what possible function could a dead Basileus serve the Empire, my lord? I am not one to question your power over such things, but why a rebellious xenophobe?"
- "All beings possess a certain power, Grand Mandator, and for whatever reason, the power once possessed by Imperator Tyranus has been brought to my attention once again."
Vosaetiur allowed his hands to fall to his sides. "And if this... resurrection is successful? What will his place be within the Empire?"
A surpising glint appeared in the Emperor's malevolent eyes. "I rather thought I would allow you and the Imperious Lord work that out."
- "Work that out... the Imperious Lord?"
- "Yes," the Emperor continued. "A compromise."
Vosaetiur narrowed his eyes. "I do not believe this will benefit the Empire, my Lord."
- "The Empire," The Emperor said, miming surprise, "is precisely what will benefit, Grand Mandator. I will assuage your fear, then? He will be a Lord of the Phaedric Order, his loyalty shall be to myself," Tyrómairon narrowed his eyes deviously, "and the Empire."
Voseatiur nodded briskly, accepting the Emperor's decision. "Your will be done, Lord Emperor. I shall return to the Battlestation to oversee the latest tests."
Neither haughty nor draconic, the Emperor nodded his head and turned to face the cityscape as the Grand Mandator left the audience chamber. His eyes settled on the sun's light. Feeling an all too common feeling of unease as the light arose over the horizon, the Emperor furrowed his brow, intent that the Light would not prevent the fruition of his plan.
The Dark Lord placed his hand across the head of Tyranus' corpse, recently thawed from a stasis chamber at the Emperor's orders, and he set his will upon him.
One of the enigmatic Phaedra known as the Emperor's Hand beckoned to the dark-robed shadow of the Emperor as he stood in the midst of the Oikoumene installation found at the heart of the planet's core.
- "My Lord," the Hand said as she genuflected, "He lives. The ritual is a success."
- "Good. Very good."
The Emperor regarded the shattered body of the Imperator as he lay floating in mid air before the Emperor. To most eyes, the former Imperator would have appeared frightening, his serpentine form augmented by harsh black armour that jutted in large spikes from a crowned helm and imposing shoulder pads. The Dark energy of the Mornûnendur coarsed through him as he finally awoke from death.
- "Imperious Lord, welcome."
The livid scarlet eyes of the Basileus opened, fixed on the shadowy Dark Lord standing before him. The tall and skeletally thin figure slowly descended to the ground. He flexed his fingers, his expression exultant.
- "Thank you, Emperor." He patted some non-existent dust from his armour. "Dreadfully sorry about our little spat."
The Emperor dismissed the comment with a wave of his hand. "Think nothing of it. That life has passed. You are no longer "Tyranus". You are the "Imperious Lord", reconstructed with the loyalty to the Empire that your previous iteration lacked."
The Imperious Lord nodded his head slightly. "I am fully aware of the folly of defiance, my Lord. Now... what is your command?"
A malevolent smile appeared on the Emperor's face. "An old enemy has outlived its usefulness. You shall be the architect of its destruction."