A New Player

When Burrito was a young boy, his mother Sapphire was distraught and unsure how to proceed. She tried her best to raise him but, in the end, the pain of knowing the love of her life had played a cruel trick on her and had been controlling every aspect of her life morphed her mind. Sapphire felt the mental snap coming on, and in her last sane moments, she sent Burrito far away and chained herself to the little wooden shack they had been living in.

She knew that one day, the structure would rot, and the chains would break loose. She hoped he’d be a well-adjusted adult by that time, and perhaps have a cure for her mental disease. She settled in and awaited his return, imagining him as a grown man, presenting the family tormenter’s head on a platter.

 

 

Luna waited for what felt like ages in the foyer of the palace. She was requesting counsel with the “King” of Platt to ask why he would do such a terrible thing to his own son. A well-dressed man glided around the corner with all of the grace and grandeur of a king, but his form did not match. He was far too short, a measly six foot, tan and somewhat muscular. These features certainly were not fit for someone with the status of King of the Gods.

His over-confident gaze gave way to a softer one, but she knew better. It was all an act, a mask of masks to hid his wickedness from those who served him. The once courageous and charismatic staffers of the palace had been reduced to mindless drones, with no opportunity for input. They barely spoke above a whisper and appeared as sickly hollows of their former selves. They slaved about the elaborate structure in mere rags, and never took a rest. It was such an undignified way for the ancient race to be treated.

Luna glared at him. “We need to talk.” “Of course, darling, that’s why we’re here.” He extended his arm to her and- reluctantly- she took it.

He led her down a long corridor so pristine it was as if nobody lived in the palace at all. He’d somehow managed to drain the life from even the walls, creating a sameness so bland, the only possible focus would be him. After an eternal silence, a soft whisper of piano music caught Luna’s ear, and she could hardly contain her delight. He gave a slight flick of the wrist and the door swung wide, giving way to a highly lit chamber of merriment. To her amazement, everyone inside was a Plattian Noble, dressed gayly and engaged in dancing so graceful, nature itself could not recreate the movements. The beautiful men and women were seven and eight feet tall, with skin of porcelain, cedar, and brass, and eyes of sapphire, emeralds, and rubies.

Floating in the air were tiny specks of gold as if it were pollen in the warm breeze of late spring or the first snowfall of winter. It accumulated at the corners of the room and stuck to everyone’s hair and skin, glimmering in the soft yellow lighting. One of the women caught a glimpse of Luna and stumbled. Ghastly screams tore through the crowd as the light dimmed and went out. The wind burst open the shutters and chilled Luna to the bone.

All of the guests were slowly wasting away into emaciated corpses and fell at her feet. The only light came from Nathaniel, who was glowing a brilliant blue and baring his teeth at her. Calmly, Luna surrounded herself with her own blue light, that of her shield, wielding a golden chain whip. But before she could use the whip, Nathaniel burst through her shield with ease and grasped her wrist firmly, staring at her hungrily. “What do you want?!” His voice was oddly soothing. “I want you to raise my son to be a great warrior. Make him hate me, make him see that I am his ultimate enemy. I want him to thirst for my blood. I want him to feel like his only purpose in life is reclaiming the throne from me.”

He let go and took a step back. “Why would I do that?” Luna fought with all her might to stay strong and not to give into his lies, the pain in his eyes was mere deceit. “You have to. I have made it so.” He turned and walked away, disappearing into the labyrinth of corridors, leaving Luna alone in the dark.

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A New Player

3000-3152

  • 3000: Luna and Sol marry, beginning a reign of terror over creatures unlike gods. Luna wants a child but Sol refuses to give her one. She cheats on him with a charming stranger, bearing twins, and lying about their origin.
  • 3102: Anika and Adrian take the throne after the accidental death of their father. Anika begins freeing angel slaves, and the kingdom is unhappy about this. A mysterious stranger decides to intervene, seducing Adrian in order to get to Anika and overthrow her.
  • 3109: The stranger reveals his name and face. Nathaniel successfully overthrows Anika. Anika makes friends with an angel, an ancient warrior, and a hybrid whilst roaming the Aigon Forest. Anika moves in with the hybrid, Otirik, and they marry.
  • 3112: Otirik and Anika have two year old twins, and a war is brewing. Platt lies in ruins and most of the gods are dead, aside from Anika who is in Aigon, Adrian, who became disillusioned and is now locked away, and Kitten, who is going her own way, completely unaware.
  • 3115: Kitten has married and given birth to a baby girl, with Slenderman. She is visited by the angel Jasper, whom she is unaware is working for Nathaniel, who asks her to consider arranging a marriage between her daughter and his newborn brother. She agrees. She finds out that Anika is living near her, and goes to meet her, catching up and agreeing to raise her children should something happen to them.
  • 3117: Jasper follows kitten when she is visiting Anika, finding where she lives and calling an army to destroy them. Kitten flees with the children, and Anika and Otirik are slain by Nathaniel’s own hand.
  • 3125: Estrella becomes the new queen while Nathaniel slinks back into the shadows. Her brother grows jealous and kills her, then kills himself out of guilt. With nobody left, the line of demigods remains as the royal class, desperate to claim the power they once knew, leaving them open to the hardships and manipulation Nathaniel is so good at.
  • 3126: Emily gives birth to a girl who is the love child of her and her betrothed. But she falls in love with another, driving Orion mad, until he is intent to kill them. But instead he ends up killed, or believed so. His body was never found.
  • 3152: Many uneventful years passed, and then Sapphire met a stranger. He was charming mysterious, and altogether dangerous. She ran away with him, leaving no trace.
3000-3152

A Ritual

Nathaniel descended the stares into the dungeon holding a book and a bottle of wine. The guards let him into Elia’s cell. She was chained to the wall and in very bad shape. He smiled and offered her a drink of the special wine.

“Drink, for this is my blood.” He let loose a howl of laughter after that made her reluctant to drink. But having not eaten or drank anything in quite a while, she took a sip. It tasted funny.

After she sipped, he stepped back and started reading form the book in Plattian. She started to feel warm, and then her body elongated and her hair flew about her as if blown by an unseen wind.

She pulled herself free of her restraints, revealing rows and rows of pointed white teeth. She unhinged her jaw and let out an ear piercing scream, killing the guards and knocking Nathaniel down. That’s when she escaped and Nathaniel picked himself up, dumbfounded. “Have I just created a monster worse than I?”

A Ritual

Nathaniel’s Meal

Nathaniel walked the full length of the palace in seven minutes. He was eager and hungry. The guards presented a young woman with incredible insight. She stared at him unblinking, and he licked his lips. “Leave us.” he motioned for the guards to leave.

“What is your name, young lady?” She wouldn’t answer him, her eyes squinting slightly with effort. “I see you’re going to make this difficult Elia.” he smiled. “I like that.”

She hissed at him. “Your amount of power is impossible for someone supposedly human. What are you really?” He grinned again, his teeth now pointed and glinting pure white, his hair flowing about him as if blown by a massive unseen wind. His body elongated and the ground around him lit with blue flames that didn’t actually burn anything.

“I don’t know what I am, but I know what I want.” He approached her, and she screamed and tried to get away, but to no avail. In just an instant, his mouth was on hers, draining her of her power and life force. But something within her intrigued him, and he spared her life.

She lay on the ground, breathing labored breath. He returned to his human state and tapped his finger on an ornate tabletop. “I think I can use you for something. I’ll see you soon.” He left the room and the guards collected her. She sent dagger stares at his back before they took her back to the dungeon.

Nathaniel’s Meal

Unlikely Prisoner

He lay on the floor, battered and bruised, struggling for breath after the last punch he endured. After several minutes of complete silence, his captor burst forth in a fit of howling laughter.

“What a sight! How pitiful our Great King is on his knees… Oh, how I have missed seeing you like this…” Nathaniel stepped forward, stomping on Adrian’s hands and grinding the heel of his boot into them. “I have longed for you for many months, but ever since your sister was escorted to a fitting location, you have denied me. How dare you.”

There was a knock on the door. Nathaniel’s smile faded and he feigned a look of torment and pain, as he said, “Come in”. His servant came in and bowed before him, before whispering something in his ear. Adrian could see in Nathaniel’s eyes that he was holding back laughter.

As the servant left, he broke into an evil grin. “It would seem that one of my servants has taken his own life. How hilarious. I shall make a spectacle out of it at his funeral. After all, the kingdom started to believe that he and I were secretly having an affair while your majesty is… ill.” He chuckled again.

“I will make your sister fall to her knees like I have made you. I want to see her broken and begging.”

Adrian slowly looked up at Nathaniel, and when their eyes met, he was temporarily startled. The deep red color had returned to the Death God’s eyes, and the fire was behind them again. “You won’t defeat her.”

Nathaniel’s smile returned as he picked up a small leather bound book and slid it into his inside pocket. “I just did.”

 

 

Unlikely Prisoner

Betrayal

I never realized just how clueless the human race is. We can have entire wars, the battles raging around them, the wounded soldiers sleeping in their houses and feeding on their livestock, and yet, not a single human caught on long enough to inform the world that there are gods and goddesses.

The Angels war lasted for a thousand years, and I made many friends amongst my supposed enemies. It was never my decision to enslave them, not in my interest to hold them back from their happiness.

Fighting for the angels while maintaining the trust of my beloved kingdom was a constant struggle. My own brother –the boy that I grew up playing with, the boy who told me all of his secrets, the boy who was supposed to help me and rule alongside me- despised me.

Imagine my surprise and the sheer terror that I experienced when I met his lover for the first time. Adrian had been keeping their relationship a secret, and at first, I thought it was because he is gay. I assured him that the kingdom would be proud of their young leader, regardless of sexuality, but he never did tell them.

I started becoming suspicious when I realized that they never met within the city of Platt, or even on the spiritual plane. He would arrive home, pretending to be tired, hiding their notes in his inner coat pocket. I nearly begged him to let me meet this mystery man, but he would just look away, his shaggy dark hair falling into his face, and he mumbled, “In time, in time.”

My brother has the opposite powers of me so that we may keep the balance of the earth together. That being said, the god of death and decay is not required to look the part. My brother has always been rather handsome, though a bit pale, but healthy in size and shape. His eyes are a deep shade of red, a striking color against the paleness of his skin and the darkness of his hair. A color of Life, and Vitality.

I started to notice the difference when my brother started to look thinner and more fragile, and the paleness was less the color of a sculpture and more the color of a corpse. His eyes changed too, darkening and becoming almost black, and when I would look into his eyes –which was rare because he never met my gaze anymore –they were so hollow.

It was mid-festival of springtime, and he hadn’t appeared before the kingdom as he should have. My heart was racing as I scrambled around to find him, afraid that something terrible had happened to him, concerned about his current state of health. I saw him then, letting in a cloaked figure.

I rushed to meet them, rushed to stop them, and was greeted by an angry, hollow shell that somewhat resembled my brother and a very tall, very handsome, and very human man. His smile made my heart flutter, yet there was something uncanny about him. He grabbed me hard by the wrist –it shouldn’t have hurt me, he is only mortal –and escorted me inside with my brother.

“I have long awaited our meeting.” He paced back and forth in front of me. “But I can’t say I was ready to do this so soon.” His face was now inches from mine, and I could see the storm raging in his soul. “I’m going to turn this place around because you have ruined it. And I am going to kill you one day, sometime soon, but not today.”

Without much of a warning, two of the guards, my guards, my friends, took me to the edge of the city. My brother watched on, emotionless, or perhaps helpless, as I pled with them to just let me be. I could see the struggle in their eyes, the sheer terror. They were no longer in control, and I had to accept my fate.

They threw me down from Platt, and I landed in the middle of Aigon forest. I was laying there for days, healing my wounds and my broken heart. Once I was able, I stood, and I wandered throughout the forest, until I met the people that I now call my family. That’s how I got here.

 

Betrayal

The Winning Stroke

Oracle stood before the open window in the palace, solemnly and quietly saying his goodbyes to Platt. He looked to the temple and said his prayers to Luna that Nathaniel would not succeed.

Turning to the scroll lain across his room’s table, he readied his pen and began to write. He wrote of the impending doom of the kingdom that he had come to love. He wrote of all of Nathaniel’s secrets.

When he finished, he made a map of Aigon, and marked on the map all of the places that he his essential relics. He knew that Nathaniel’s power wavered in the presence of such relics.

He then marked all of the places that he hid the artifacts that could be used as a weapon against Nathaniel and his army. Once the map was drafted, he rolled it and the scroll together, and sent a pigeon to deliver it to a human that lived in Aigon.

This human would later find Anika and deliver the information to her so that she could find the artifacts before Nathaniel could.

Oracle walked back to the edge of the window and looked over the ledge to see how far it was down. After a deep breath, he resigned to his fate.

The Winning Stroke