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Holder of Adversary

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In any city, in any country, venture across the highways and lonely roads of the slums, or the “bad part of town.” Should you come across a scruffy man holding a bottle of liquor in a paper bag, his shirt sweat-stained and his pants muddied, do not be afraid to ask him if he knows of the one who calls itself “The Holder of the Adversary.”

More than likely, he will smile knowingly at you, like an old friend with whom you've just shared an inside joke. Do not be alarmed; the man knows of the one you search for. The less fortunate of us sometimes seem to know these things. He will guide you to a manhole and casually slide the metal lid off with one grimy boot. Tossing you a small flashlight which flickers precariously, he will urge you down into the darkness.

Once inside the depths of the sewage system, you will come to realize that it bears no unpleasant scent, no scent whatsoever, in fact. But, turning on the flashlight and gazing at your surroundings, you will realize you are in a round room. On all the walls hang partially decomposed bodies, their owners forever suspended in a state of half-awareness, feeling all the pain and horror of being trapped inside these corpses. Corpses litter the floors, and you notice that one nearly touches you. You want to shrink away, but all at once, the smell arrives. It is the most awful thing you could have imagined: human and animal excrement, sulfur, rotting bodies, burning flesh.

You are momentarily paralyzed by the horror of it, and when you recover, you do your best to will yourself not to throw up. A thought appears in your head: “We are the remains of the ones who could not face the Adversary.” You gulp, fearful, and stare around you, searching for the source of the voice. But suddenly, the bodies begin to explode, one by one, releasing more of the horrible scent and bathing you in bodily fluids and chunkier things you'd rather not know the names of.

The corpses sink onto the floor, and what rises out of the slimy mess is a creature of pure beauty. Whether man or woman, it depends on you yourself. You cannot shake your gaze from this gorgeous, naked human until you realize this is a portrayal of you, the best you that you could be. Confident, smiling a gentle, patient smile, they have everything you could ever wish for yourself to become.

You are overcome by a sudden jealousy, a total anger, a need to destroy this perfect you. Do not do it. If you do, you are doomed to the Adversary's wrath, the eternal torment of the Damned you have witnessed prior. Only one question comes to mind to ask the exquisite creature: “What could they destroy?”

The Holder of the Adversary chuckles melodically, condescendingly, and explains to you as though you are a small child exactly the answer to your question. It spares no details, even the most horrific. Strangely, however, the story is interesting and calming to listen to, and you find yourself absorbed in a childlike fascination with The Holder. You liken The Holder's story to one told to you by a loved one or a guide when you were a child, and you know that you now have the key to defeating the Adversary, that which the Damned could not acquire.

“What will you do now, my child?” The Holder asks you, smiling pleasantly, as it places an Object in your palm and closes your hand around it. “You mustn't open your hand until you are free of this place,” says The Holder, as a fitting goodbye.

Once having escaped from the sewer, you open your fingers, which feel strangely stiff. You hear the echo of the perfect you's laughter swim around you as you look at the Object in your hand. It is a green plastic army man toy.

This Object is the 14th out of 538. It understands how to defeat your greatest enemy, and must never be allowed to join the rest.

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