“What do you hope to achieve?” the shade smiled an ice cream smile. Ben recoiled, preparing for an onslaught. “Do you still believe the ‘almighty Bear God’ to be your savior? To free the damned? To change the course of events that have been predestined since before, you were even a thought?”
Ben shook his head. “I am not the being I once was. I have learned a lot on my travels with him. He has taught me in his own way,” his hands became fists, drawing power from the darkness, “I made a mistake believing in the Darkness; confiding in it, relying upon it. The true power all along…” he closed his eyes, “has been inside of me.” Ben opened his eyes, the blackness in them gone. They emanated a blinding light, banishing the shadows.
Laughter echoed as the shades all faded in the light. “Pathetic fool. Light cannot exist without darkness. Even if you believe yourself to be purified and rid us, deep down you know you will turn. You will become an enemy of the Bear God. He and his friends will turn on you. You will have no one. And then? Then you will come searching for us. We will say ‘told you so.’ It is better you accept it now than be torn limb from limb.”
The remaining darkness swirled around, fighting the light. Ben concentrated hard on the thought that he was doing good, and that the Bear God was indeed, his friend. He felt a presence behind him. He knew those that stood with him well and those he came to know only now.
“We won’t abandon you, Ben. Let your doubt go, and come back…because we have some asses to kick,” he heard the Bear God say.
He grinned at the remark and unleashed his energy to cleanse the vast void to pure white. His eyes opened to the portal swirling and people around him. His friends.
“Welcome back, sleepyhead,” said Rubricon, who gave him a pat on the back.
Ben had ascended, conquering his fear and doubt completely now. He no longer appeared as the Mirelurk he once was. Now, he was a figure of glowing white energy.
“Argh, you wretched creatures!” cried Diablo. “TOYMAKER! Kill yourself, so that I may be freed of this place and dominate your world.”
“Kill myself? That escalated quickly…” said the Toymaker.
Diablo’s voice boomed, “DO IT! I’ll just revive you and give you untold power that could rival the ABG.”
The Toymaker sighed, “Fine, I volunteer myself as tribute or whatever.”
“NO!” the heroes cried.
They could sense a hint of a grin from Diablo through the portal. “Good.”
A massive red hand stretched through the portal and snatched up the Toymaker. “WOAH, WOAH! You could come through already?”
“Semantics. The portal needs to BIGGER for me!” Diablo shouted as he started to squeeze the life out of the Toymaker.
“It. Was. A. Trap.” the Toymaker said before he died in Diablo’s hand.
“Son of a bitch,’ said the Bear God, “well, we’re fucked.”
Diablo cackled maniacally as he siphoned the last soul—the Toymaker—to make the portal bigger, to his size, and began to emerge from the portal. The facility that once housed some of the most dangerous creations in the Wasteland crumbled around them. Before them stood the massive being, Diablo. “It’s so good to stretch my legs,” he said as he stretched. He looked down at the heroes with a smirk.
“I’ve kicked your ass before, and I will do it again, and again, and again,” said the Bear God.
“Ah ah,” said Diablo as he wagged his finger, “why don’t you meet some of my friends first.”
The portal changed to a kaleidoscopic mystery of colors, as beings from different universes started to emerge from it.
“I hope someone has a cheat code…” said Sin.
“Come, friends, let us decide the fate of this world!” Diablo shouted as his army of minions erupted from the portal.