As Raziel exits the time-streaming
chamber, he realizes that Moebius has tricked him.
The Stronghold is abandoned, and has been overrun by demons. It is
night, and a cataclysmic storm rages outside. Recent human corpses litter the ground.
Even as I emerged from that infernal time-streaming chamber, I suspected
The Stronghold was vacant – derelict and abandoned...
An energy barrier materializes to block Raziel's passage, and two demons drop down from the air – vaguely rasping Raziel's name.
Raziel sees memorials commemorating Moebius’s
murder at Kain’s hands, and the climax of the vampire purge – Vorador’s
If I had any doubts about the era I now occupied, this grotesque tableau
certainly eliminated them.
For here was Moebius – long since murdered by Kain – lionized and beatified
as the martyred leader of his bloodthirsty crusade.
And if I required further evidence, I needed only to behold the gruesome
trophy Moebius held aloft: the severed head of Vorador, the final
triumphant kill of Moebius’s cutthroat mob. His execution marked
the annihilation of the vampires.
Far from channeling me into Nosgoth’s past, Moebius had propelled me
over a century into its ghastly future.
Raziel pauses – he turns away from the statue, and begins
to walk toward the gate that leads into the nave of the Sanctuary.
The intent behind this little detour was unmistakable.
Having failed to make me his obedient assassin, Moebius intended to
keep me ignorant of my true destiny, which clearly lay in Nosgoth’s past.
While his deception only reinforced my purpose, Moebius had effectively
stranded me here.
This left me no course but to explore the era I now occupied, and see
what changes the century had wrought following Kain’s ill-fated decision.
Perhaps time had cleared a path for me into the mountains, where I
might unearth more clues behind the mystery of Janos Audron.
Moebius' Martyred Spirit
As Raziel works his way through the nightmare Stronghold, he encounters the spectre of Moebius, who has been dead for
a century (killed by Kain).
(anguished, withered voice)
What pathetic charade is this now, Moebius?
No charade, Raziel. Only the entreaties of this martyred spirit.
Your pleas mean nothing to me, after all your deceit.
You have propelled me into Nosgoth’s future, Moebius – and left
me stranded here.
I am truly sorry, Raziel, but it was necessary. Consider it the
last valiant act of a doomed man.
You have strayed from your purpose, and now behold the result – gaze
upon the wasteland you and Kain authored together!
I fail to see how I’m responsible -
You spared Kain! And by doing so, you have released a
multitude of horrors upon this world.
I can accept that Kain has murdered me, Raziel. As the Time Guardian,
I foresaw that incident long before it occurred.
And I take some small comfort in the fact that Kain remains the sole
survivor of his vile breed.
But you have single-handedly made my sacrifice meaningless.
Your argument is disingenuous, Time-Streamer.
I cannot see how killing or sparing Kain’s future self would
alter these events.
This wasteland was created by Kain’s original refusal at the Pillars
– and amidst all these twists and turns, that event has never changed.
You are cunning, Moebius – but I think you’ve gotten tangled in your
As Kain clings to his precious seat of power, the Pillars sink into
a mire of decay, dragging all of Nosgoth down with them!
I don’t think this has anything to do with the Pillars or Kain’s failure
to sacrifice himself.
I think you’re simply afraid - because you don’t know what he’s
He’s a wild-card, isn’t he, and you don’t want his influence in your
Which is why you wanted me to eliminate him.
Now that he’s survived, you have no idea what’s coming, do you?
Maybe for the first time in your entire life.
You’re terrified that he may have truly found a third option out of
the dilemma you orchestrated for him.
Kain’s lies have addled your mind.
Leave this place, and trouble my spirit no more!
If you even are a spirit.
You’ve forgotten I have a way to tell for sure...
Raziel grabs his cowl as though prepared to devour Moebius’ soul –
... if you’re willing to risk it.
Moebius scowls at Raziel and vanishes. Raziel replaces his cowl.
I didn’t think so. Either way, you lose.
Raziel enters the ruined Pillars clearing, and sees the devastation wrought by Kain’s fateful decision
a century ago. The columns have toppled and litter
the clearing; the sheared-off stumps that remain protrude from the platform
crookedly, like broken teeth. It is night, pouring rain; lightning and thunder
crash. Raziel stands in stunned silence for a moment as he surveys the apocalyptic scene.
These were the Pillars so familiar to my blighted eyes.
But now that I had begun to learn their true significance, I regarded
the Pillars’ destruction with a new, enlightened sense of horror.
And I questioned now whether Kain’s simple refusal – his mere ambition – could truly have caused such devastation.
I felt that some darker influence was at work here.
In the gloom, Raziel sees the spectre of Ariel drifting restlessly among the toppled Pillars.
As I approached, I discerned the spirit of Ariel – bound here now for
more than a century.
Ariel laments to herself, unaware of Raziel's presence. She paces
around the decayed Pillars like a cat in a cage, bound and restless.
Forever am I bound, hope abandoned, my spirit tethered to this place...
What destroyed the Circle could not touch me. For I was newly
dead, and beyond harm’s reach.
I alone was spared the descent into madness, and Kain alone was spared
the pain of death.
When Nupraptor’s poison seized Kain even in the safety of the womb,
much more than just his destiny was lost. All of Nosgoth lost
Consider us now... both of us less than we once were.
I, pure but insubstantial; and Kain terribly real, but corrupted.
Raziel interrupts Ariel's reverie, and she turns in alarm.
Your imprisonment here has deranged you, spirit.
You fixate on Kain because you believe he is the tether that
binds you here. But we both know he is not the author of your agony.
The Pillars were subverted by dark forces, invited by the Guardians
The more I learn of your Circle, the more I see a tangle of nested
Ariel responds angrily –
Kain handed them their victory.
They sought to topple the Pillars, and he was their willing instrument.
(insistent; a little cruel)
Or was he their unwilling pawn?
Would it blunt your wrath to know that Kain’s dilemma was calculated
to bring the Pillars down, regardless of the choice he made? And that the devastation would have been even greater had he chosen
the path you would prescribe for him?
You are a subtle, deceitful creature.
But your clever arguments do not absolve Kain.
He must die for the Pillars to be restored; there is no other
(persistent; more cruel)
Then consider this more ominous possibility – what if Kain’s
death does not restore the Pillars?
Consider that it may simply be too late. That this world
may be beyond redemption.
And that you may be bound here eternally.
Ariel doesn’t want to hear this; she tries
to escape Raziel by dematerializing, unaware that Raziel is able to follow. Raziel shifts into spectral and startles her as she cowers behind the Balance Pillar.
Cornered and miserable, Ariel implores Raziel
Why do you hound me, demon?
You can see that I am captive here. Show me some mercy.
Like the mercy you showed your fellow Guardians when you set Kain on
Or the mercy you showed Kain when you kept him ignorant of his destiny
while you used him as the scourge of the Circle?
Or perhaps like the mercy you showed your beloved Nupraptor when you made him Kain’s first kill?
(upset; feeling trapped)
You are cruel. Why do you torment me?
Weary of this, Raziel relents –
I’m merely looking for answers, Ariel.
Very well - I’ll leave you in peace.
But know this – about you, and this purgatory from which you
long to escape...
... you’re merely at the threshold.
Raziel Defies The Elder
Raziel revisits the subterranean Pillars grotto after having been propelled over a century into Nosgoth's ghastly future. He is shocked to discover how the Elder
God has encroached into the chamber – its tentacles wind chokingly
around the shattered, broken Pillars, and the room’s murals have nearly been obliterated by the passage of its grasping limbs.
(greeting Raziel disdainfully)
Raziel, the failed assassin.
You had Kain at your mercy but lacked the courage to fulfill the act.
And now you see the wasteland wrought by the tyrant’s hand. By
his selfish decision to preserve his own life, even when it meant sacrificing
the whole world.
This is the fate of Nosgoth, as long as Kain remains alive.
An ironic condemnation, given this guilty scene.
One would think you’d torn down the Pillars single-handedly.
What are you trying to obliterate as you drag your loathsome body through
And why, as Nosgoth descends into madness and misery, do you appear to thrive?
Things in this world, I am learning, are rarely what they seem.
You, apparently, are no exception.
I am the Engine of Life, the source of Nosgoth’s very existence.
I am the hub of the Wheel, the origin of all Life, the devourer of
...Or maybe you’re just hungry – could it be as simple as that?
Wouldn’t that be poetic irony? The great adversary of the vampires
turns out to be the biggest parasite of them all.
Do not test my patience, Raziel.
I made you, and I will unmake you if I become so inclined.
As your agent, I am beyond death.
There are fates worse than death, Raziel.
Oh, I see you now as you truly are.
A cancer – a spooling parasite burrowed deep in the heart of
Play out your pitiful rebellion, and take your place among the destroyed,
the used, and the damned.
But know this – you are mine for eternity.
You have always been, and will always be, my soul reaver...