Dame Isabelle was swinging her ivory blade in slow, composed movements, although her hear was racing. She was finally nearing the peak of the Alabaster Tower. She had gotten too far to give up now. And though the hordes of imps and demons, their bodies black as tar, the knight pressed on, determined to release her beloved prince Alistair from the curse.
The hallowed light of her blade blinded the creatures, and the sword sliced through them as if they were made of water. After a while, the ebony mass was only a smudge on the tower’s cold, ivory walls. The stairwell was quiet at last, and Dame Isabelle could finally reach the chamber where her love lay. The only sounds were her echoing, metallic steps, and her shallow breath.
The top chamber was a black void. The windows were covered with jet drapes, and the marble floor, white and lustrous up until this point, was dark and reflected nothing.
And then she saw it.
The pale, beautiful face. Turning to face her from within the void, it resembled a pale mask suspended in midair, emitting an eerie glow. She dropped her blade and ran to greet her prince. As she neared it, the face rose, then, in a flash, moved to find itself an inch away from Dame Isabelle’s face. It was a dead face. The half-open eyes were empty sockets, a trail of black liquid running down the lips. It was a mask, fashioned from her prince’s face. The knight froze, having glimpsed what lied beneath the mask.
It was too late for her. The blade could not protect her anymore. Now there was more than terror immobilizing her body. She was embraced so tight, her breaths became more and more sparse. The face came nearer, and nearer, the black void of its eyes staring into hers. She felt its lips meet hers. For a moment she was thankful she could feel the touch of them again. But then she felt the chill of them, the suffocating darkness, and her breath escaped her.
The darkness of the Alabaster Tower took her.