Amongst snowy grey peaks, concluding a winding trail a black stone tower stood. In stark contrast to the snow surrounding it, the Master’s sanctum refused the touch of ice which melted instantly on contact with the warm stone.
Inside, a chamber with shutters closed similarly repelled the cold. Like a container of darkness, the only source of illumination was a crystal sphere atop an wrought-iron stand.
A heavy wooden door burst open as an angry mage angrily strode into the room. Blood dripped from his soaking robes, smearing across the floor.. The Master had come home. He snapped his fingers and a half dozen lights blinked into existence atop magical sconces spaced evenly around the room.
He opened a large oaken armoire. His body was weakened, but his will was as intense as ever. He reached in and downed three healing potions in rapid succession. He sucked in a breath without pain finally and his shaking hands steadied. He grasped a staff from the armoire, a long shaft of black rune inscribed wood, topped by a glass sphere. The Blue iris of the eyeball inside the sphere widened as it regarded him. The master’s empty hand unconsciously reached half way up to the eye patch on his face as his remaining eye looked back.
The Master gestured and four pair of windows shutters slammed open, icy air rushing into the room. The ancient elf sucked in the invigorating air. He cast another spell and the blood disappeared from his robes. The one-eyed elf walked over to the scrying orb. He whispered words he knew very well and placed a hand on either side of the sphere. As he concentrated upon it, his visage grew even darker as a cold rage filled him. His vision beheld ruined cities on fire, bodies strewn in the streets. All races, all peoples he saw as he moved his far sight about. Tears traced down his face silently as he gazed upon those he loved most dearly.
“I know what I must do,” he muttered in elvish.
He moved away from the sphere, clutching the staff tightly. Despite his anger and despair, he pushed that aside with well practiced skill. His mind blanked instantly as he prepared to draw upon his deepest reserves of power to summon his most powerful spell. Then he filled his mind with the complicated spell pattern he had not often used. Geometric patterns of runes filled his powerful mind causing energy from outside his body to coalesce itself within his mind. He shaped the energy as an exercise of pure will forcing the tremendous amount of reality-altering energy to bend to his will. All of this done in nearly an instant.
Then the Master cast Wish.