A tremor coursed through Sovere's earthly prison, stirring him from his eternal sentencing. In the intervening millennia, he had managed to lull his attention to a standstill, passing the absolutely mind numbing time without much care. But now something was shifting in his stony hold, breaking his meditation. It had to be more than a simple quake; those had little impact on his holding cell.

Someone was coming.

Stilled thought and unbroken meditation gave way to curiosity, and from there wrath. Only someone specific would know to come looking for him here: the captors. Those faithless fools calling themselves Judges, having bested him and then locked him way here in the first place. Yes, Sovere could feel it now as the rocks deep in the mountain shifted and broke. They were coming to retrieve him after all this time.

What, it wasn't enough that they had shamed him? That they had left his immortal mind and spirit to whither across the eons? What further punishment did they hold in store? Some form of torture? Sovere had thought their precious codes and laws above such barbaric things—things only he would stoop to. Perhaps great change had come upon their Councils in the passing millennia.

Maybe he could catch them by surprise.

To Sovere's surprise, though, it was not the all-bending will of the Judges that cast the stones and mountain prison aside. Wrath faded to utter confusion as the binding energy chains holding Sovere in place shattered, leaving him to probe outward.

What foolishness was this? These were not Judges, but mortal men! Their costumes and languages had changed since he had last seen them, as well as their tools. Strange, gargantuan machines that bore and ate away at the earth. But they were mortal men all the same, and the best kind.

Sovere hissed forth from his holding cell, watching in curiosity as the men in their work clothes stumbled before him in panic.

"Gas leak! Everyone out!"

Their machinery ground to a halt, their powered work lights going every which way as they scampered over each other. Like bugs exposed to sunlight, they crawled back through their tunnels, scampering away from Sovere.

He realized of course they must not understand what they had seen. It isn't every day a mortal gazes upon a god trapped far beneath the surface, freed from unrightful imprisonment. He supposed his ghastly form had appeared as something more commonplace; a confusion in their puny, dazed minds. No matter. They would worship him yet.

Sovere seized upon the fat body of one of the miners. He heaved and croaked in terror, perhaps realizing for the first time that truly deviant forces had been unleashed from the depths. Sovere cackled in delight as he crushed the last life from the helpless man. Then, with what limited time he had, he probed the dying thoughts to understand his predicament.

It was of little use for a freed god to come upon the world with no sense of the times.

Most of this poor man's mind was filled with contextual nonsense that Sovere could have cared less about. Meaningless times, place names, and societal norms. It was unsurprising that they called this mountain, as well as the whole land roundabout by new names. Kingdoms and empires had risen and fallen as expected.

What interested Sovere most was the village scattered across the valley below the mountain. These weren't just home to the miners, but whole families and peoples. Peoples unaware of Sovere or his rightful dominion over them.

The miner's body croaked, and Sovere found himself violently expelled. Ah well, he had gained his purpose.

Seeking out a vein of clay running within the mountain's depths, Sovere began to fashion himself a physical form. Putrid! How he tested such limiting dimensions. But it would suffice for his plans. In short order, he had shaped the clay to mirror one of their pathetic corporeal bodies. A man, perhaps thirty years of maturity, with jet black hair and a devilish grin.

Sovere liked clay; it was easy to mold, and didn't pain him as much as the mortal bodies of these humans. And with such a false body, he now had a tool to begin destroying the souls of man once more.