Doniel remembered falling. Remembered seeming to hang in air that buffeted him while the Overlord fought to take over his mind. Overlord Mardis, who'd all but defeated the band Sir William the Black had assembled, who'd been laughing as magical winds drove even the giant Khan to his knees.
Remembered pain from ribs broken when he'd been tossed against the wall early in the battle. Doniel had lain there, ignored by the Overlord's minions, until he'd realized he was near the balcony and that the Overlord stood with his back to the open space, all attention on the heroes.
Overlord Mardis never expected to be tackled by an injured hero, and fell.
Doniel remembered that. Remembered, too, the way the ground loomed when the Overlord's body went limp, in that moment before the impact that smeared the Overlord across the jagged rocks drove everything out. It hadn't hurt, at first. There'd been no room for pain.
Then, when pain rose, the welcome blackness. And waking in a tomb, where the minions had proclaimed him the Overlord. Although he knew close to five years had passed between his fall and awakening he remembered nothing of the time between. His body had healed, for all his bones were whole when he woke, but the scars from torn skin remained.
Ironic, that his memories of his life before becoming Overlord should return now. Doniel frowned, his helm concealing his expression from the wraiths guarding his temple. Caution dictated he keep the Overlord armor even as the wraiths and reapers bowed and offered their weapons to his service, even as the power and knowledge of the Forgotten God drifted to him, changing him in ways he couldn't yet begin to fathom.
That deity had once been immensely powerful. Doniel could taste the power, not quite within his grasp yet but only because he hadn't learned how to use it. He would.
First, though... There were two newly dead arrivals to the Abysses. The Forgotten God's knowledge told Doniel that without his intervention both would go to the places the Abysses had prepared for them during their lives, that each living, thinking creature built itself a place in an Abyss with its deeds. If the Mother Goddess chose not to intercede, that was their destination unless the newcomer was a minion in which case he would go to the River of Souls for the Fisher to retrieve if his Overlord chose (Doniel wondered briefly why Gnarl had never mentioned that before dismissing the thought) or his memories would be purged and he would wait in the minion Abyss until his turn came to be spawned into a new minion body.
This minion would be enjoying no such good fortune.
If Doniel closed his eyes he could see the flare of the collapsing Abyss gate and the outline of the Jester. The scrawny little bastard's salute as he escaped to safety, leaving his fellow minions trapped with their Overlord.
Only they weren't trapped. The Abyss itself sent them back to the world above. As best Doniel could measure they'd been returned to the Ruborian Desert near the location of the collapsed gate.
Which very likely explained why the Jester was now in the Abyss.
As if the thought had been a trigger, knowledge settled in Doniel's mind. The minions had been remarkably controlled to take this long to dismember the Jester. They hadn't left much for the blaster beetles, and they'd taken care to keep the traitorous creature alive as long as they could.
The other arrival...
Doniel smiled. So Gnarl had been keeping things from him. As for Overlord Mardis, what a fall, to be reduced to sharing the body of his Jester.
He was going to 'discuss' a few things with this pair. And he was going to enjoy it.
Several of the wraiths shifted uncomfortably when their new God started to laugh.