It is bright and warm in the dream. Yelm is hot, and the air hangs heavy about you, unstirred by refreshing wind or lanced by drops of rain. The son of the Shah is before you, resplendent in his wargear, with his Magi about him.
She is there, the chief of the magi says, his outstretched hand curled to point with a finger decked with rings. The demon has passed out of this world, and she is trapped. Destroy the ritual grounds, and she will not return. To you this task is given, the finest of the Shah's warriors.
Blessings are laid on you, and the son of the Shah himself touches your standards and imbues them with his might. You feel the spirits within them strengthened by his presence.
And then you are on a wide green field, a long sloping way up to where the demon's tent is stretched like a patch of starry night pulled down from the sky. The enemy is there, and you remember the early days when the fighting was against peasants, and paltry spirits, and mountain bandits come down for loot and plunder. Now they are armored, and form their ranks with order and precision, and the years that have gone by seem not to have broken but strengthened them.
The battle is long and wearying. You fight with spear and shield and sword, your comrades to either side in long lines of golden armor and shining helms. You move with one mind, strike with one spear, shift and flank and parry and break with one thought.
And then the sun goes red. You are almost upon the tent, the demon's army near the breaking point, when the world goes mad. Dead men rise up to fight once more, their wounds undone, their eyes bright with glory. You fight, and fight, killing men who cannot be killed, and then there is a scream like a rent in the world, and the unfurling of great wings.
You see it. The Horror. And on its back, a woman so beautiful she cannot be fully seen. Your eyes burst, your mind melts, and you fly screaming into an abyss of blackness.
And then you wake.