by Shawn Phillips

Three - Initiate



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A red flame of hair waved in the air. Attached to it was a figure that could be easily interpreted as a god, for in some aspects, he was a god. He stood on the roof of an apartment that was hardly paid much attention these days. Facial features are obviously hard to come by from this man-god, largely due to the distance, but also credited to this: have you ever seen the face of a god, and been able to recall details? No, the aura is what is important. But if you were to see anything, it would be a smirk. A smirk of an upper hand, of mischief. Yes, deviousness is afoot. He lowers himself into the building.

Grain walked into his apartment. The smell of burnt eggs yanked at his nose. He checked the kitchen for any sign of a fire, then the rest of the rooms. Nothing.

"So, you've taken a human form again. Now give me what you owe." Grain turned to see a flaming figure strike him, sending him down the hallway. Grain tumbled and realized for a moment that not only was he not burning, but felt cold in the place of impact. Instinct took over, moving his body into a roll, narrowly missing another blow.

"What?!" Grain stumbled, then scrambled back down the hall towards the main room.

"Give it to me now!" the figure was already in front of Grain, grasping his face. The pressure was actually coming from within Grain's skull. He first grabbed at what appeared to be the figure's arm, then at his own head. Grain felt himself lose consciousness...

...but he didn't. He was now looking through the eyes of his attacker. The lies, the lies! The lies actually had form and were chewing on each other, gnawing, never digesting. Then, in unison, the lies stopped, and turned to look at Grain. And, in unison, they cried out, pouring over each other like tidal waves towards him, malicious in intent, hate the reason, twisted and false it had become. Flinching, turning away from the horde of deceit, Grain screamed a silent smell that looked like justified violence. And then...

Grain woke up, standing, still, in his apartment, with the corpse of a man-god at his feet, its decaying accelerating at a fast-forward-through-the-credits rate. And the words of impending doom pulled at his very being, despite his not knowing what they were.

Moments later a pack was assembled and an apartment was abandoned.


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