What was your character's hardest lesson to learn? It can be something they were taught when they were younger, or something they grappled with when they were older and matured. How did they learn the lesson? Was it an a-ha moment, or something they learned through experience? What insight did it give them?
Azrexil slams his heavy tome shut, rattling the various bottles and artifacts on his desk. He runs a hand through his hair, and slams his fist on the table, thin wisps of black smoke billow away from his hand. A small ring falls off the top shelf of his desk and bounces and rolls up to his hand. Too small for his own finger, the cracked black stone set in the center of a black metal band, he picks it up and turns it around in his hand.
"What cha got there big guy?" His shadow asks leaning over his shoulder. Its eyes fall on the ring in his hand. "Oh, I'm sorry."
"For the last time, focus!" Azrexil's voice booms across the room. "The next mistake you make will be your's to deal with, do you understand me?" Across the room a gnome in initiate's robes stands in the center of a summoning circle. "I swear I'll never understand how you manage to grasp my lessons let alone excel at them with the time your mind spends else where." A small smile creeps onto his face.
"I'm so sorry Felsha- I mean, master. I just can't help it. All these books. All these artifacts. Why can't we play with them instead? Why is it so important to know how to summon a demon I'm never going to use?"
With a knowing and amused smile, Azrexil flicks his wrist. With a loud crack and a lot of black smoke, a wrathguard charges toward the gnome. "Very well. Show me how to fight this, and I will concede your point."
"Oh come on boss! That's not fair!" The gnome dives out of the way of the charging demon. She conjures up a blast of fel fire, aimed at the back of the wrath guard. The demon staggers and slams into the wall, its horns getting caught in the stone. Before Azrexil could even blink a second bolt slams into the demons back, and out through the front. "There. I killed it. Now can we get back to the artifacts?"
Azrexil laughs deeply. "Fine. You proved your point. Brute force and never ending luck will always beat out discipline and force of will." He smiles proudly at the little gnome brushing dust from her robes, her black ring glinting slightly in the torch light.
Azrexil closes his fist tightly around the broken ring, his knuckles turning white. He looks up at the shelf the ring had fallen off. Two more black rings had stayed on the shelf, both perfect and unbroken. He hangs his head and looks at the ring one last time before putting it back in its place.
His shadow places its hand gently on his shoulder. "I'm so sorry. She was a good student." Azrexil nods slowly, a small tear forming in the corner of his eye.
"Focus! Again!" Azrexil's cold and harsh voice echos around the room. An exhausted pair of warlocks stand in their circles, sweat pouring off their foreheads, dust and blood on their robes. "I said again!" His cold unforgiving eyes bored into the pair. With a flick of his wrist, four more demons charged out of his own portal at the pair.
"I can't," One of the initiates pants, "No more." He falls to his knees as a felguard raises his axe above his head. "I can't" He repeats.
"Stop." All four demons freeze in place. Azrexil walks slowly over to the kneeling apprentice. "You think telling them to stop on the battle field will save your life? Get up. Again!" The apprentice gets up slowly, and manages to banish the felguard standing before him. He sways in place, his eyes becoming unfocused. "Good....again." The two groan and banish the other 3 demons in the room.
"Please master, no more." They search his face for any sign of pride, or recognition, finding none. Azrexil shakes his head slowly and dismisses them with a wave of his hand. They sigh, disheartened, and half walk, half stagger out of the room.
"Why do you push them so hard?" His shadow leans on his shoulder. "They are good. Probably the best students you've ever had. Smart, quick, talented, resilient. Give them something. A smile, a nod, a cookie. Come on man, you're killing them."
Azrexil pulls out the broken black ring from his robes and hold it up for his shadow to see. "I gave her adoration. I gave her accolades. Did that help her that day? Did my pride and love keep her safe? NO! IT KILLED HER!" His voice loud enough to shake the books on the shelves, outside the room, his two apprentices share a knowing look.
I like this blue but can we consider purple :^)