"The Serpent Slumbers"
A young Thoth starts out in the household of an angry drunk, his father, who forces the teenage boy into a life of drudgery, begging for coins on the city streets, only to take the boys "earnings" each day, and spending it on booze, completely neglecting the welfare of his wife, and Thoth's sister. Thoth vows to himself that he will somehow escape this terrible lifestyle, and swiftly seize any opportunity that presents itself. Another young beggar, Amon, who happens to look somewhat like Thoth in age, size, and hair color, finds himself offered a position as Acolyte to a wealthy Magistrate through a strange twist of fate when Amon happened to warn the man's guards of approaching assassin's, thus saving his life. Later that day, Thoth goes to his secret hiding place on the outskirts of town where he's been hiding coins, in an attempt to one day escape the awful city, and his drunken father. But, he soon finds three older boys stealing his hard earned gold. He try's to fight them off, but they leave him bloody and beaten, and without a single gold piece. Amon happens by and tells Thoth his story, and that he's supposed to meet the Magistrate early tomorrow morning to begin his training as Acolyte. When Thoth learns the Magistrate never got a good look at Amon's face, he starts to think about the possibiltiy of taking Amon's place, but how? Thoth then picks up a large rock, and crushes Amon's skull, killing him instantly. He leaves the body lying in the rocks, outside the city walls. The next morning Thoth meets the Magistrate posing as Amon, and begins his education as one of the Acolytes. Many summers and winters pass, and Thoth is a fast learner, but he remains ever vigilant and on the lookout for a way to advance his position, and gain power. One night he finds some ancient secret scrolls in an old looked chest, that describe some of the Dark Arts. He declares this his final path to true power, and comits a series of murders, to obtain a small collection of maps that will lead him to a place of unimaginable power. But, will he survive the experience...?