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Love Shall Persevere
Mortally wounded and leaving a gruesome trail of smeared, sticky blood on the winery floor, Grier pulled himself down into the darkness. Holding the candle out in front of him, he could only see a few feet into the perfect black surrounding him as he made his way ever deeper into the earth.

Grunting with every pull that ground more dirt into the wounds that the executioner had inflicted upon him during their long, drawn out battle, he moved at a pace that made time feel as if it had stopped. The two has fought a long, vicious battle in the depths of Dungeon Wrong, one that Grier had only won by opening himself up to a blow that would soon turn out to be his demise.

He couldn’t help but to wonder if it was worth it; though he was a firm believer in Lord British’s system of virtues, feeling one’s lifeblood drain away was shaking his resolve down to its core. With darkness closing in around him, Grier wasn’t sure if it was his candle growing dimmer or his vision finally beginning to give out, but he persevered and reached out to gain another finger hold to pull his nearly useless body another few inches.

Grier nearly succumbed to the noxious fumes pouring out of a roiling lava fall he passed close to the end of his quest, but he drew strength from the beautiful flame he held in front of him, knowing that the true Candle aflame must be quite a sight to behold.

Turning the last corner, he saw the Candle of Love before him! It was surrounded by a shroud of pure Hatred, its flame no longer shining forth, but Grier knew if he could just touch his flame to the Candle, he would diminish Astaroth’s hold. Perhaps it would roar to life once again!

When he pulled himself up to look over the rim of the magical lava maze, his heart sank. He knew with certainty then that he stood no chance of touching his flame to the true Candle, as his broken body would never allow him to negotiate the swift, ever changing maze. With a final sigh, he slid back down and laid his cheek upon the coarse stone. The candle fell from his bloody hand, its flame slowly extinguishing itself in the ancient dust that covered the cavern’s floor.

Before the darkness overcame him for the last time, Grier thought about the other brave adventurers that would follow behind him. He hoped that some must be strong enough to finish where he had failed. As he took his last breath, he saw the Candle of Love spark once in the darkness. Grier passed from this world believing that Astaroth was nearly beaten, and knowing that Love must surely overcome Hatred in the end.

The brave citizens of Britannia would see to it, or all they knew and loved would come to a sudden and final end. 

Published: June 2007
Please Note: Some dates are estimates as exact dates were unavailable.
Ultima Online ESRB Rating
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