Feb 8, 2018

Chapter 8 - Odd Connections

In an ancient book’s torn pages, a line at the bottom of a page simply reads - time is a stream. You can build a dam on a stream, but the water finds a way...sooner or later. But sometimes, you can trap a small pool of time while the stream around it keeps flowing.

Sybil was feeling like a fish in the water right now. A fish in a stagnated and stinking pool of water. And it was getting difficult to breathe. She turned around and ran towards her house. The door swung open even before she could touch the handle. Her husband stood there with a sleepy look on his face. He took one look at Sybil. Then he saw the sword in her hand. His mouth opened in slow motion and he asked the one thing Sybil was dreading to hear.

“Where is Jorah?”

She touched her forehead with a fist. Her son was gone. He was out of the time loop and they were all here. If the stranger who just arrived was telling the truth, she’d been stuck here for years. Who had taken her son out then? She had a slight idea. And knowing what she knew now, she had an inkling what was coming for her next.

“Jorah is safe,” she lied to her husband. “Go back to sleep. I will wake you up in morning.”

He looked again at the sword in her hand and the strange colors in the sky outside.

“Maybe I am dreaming,” he murmured to himself and closed the door. She heard him walk towards the bed and slump down it. He’d fall asleep soon. She had more killing to do.

She turned around and looked at the man who said he was her son. “Jorah, what is the earliest thing you can remember?”

“A ghost, mother. It was a vile looking but the kindest demon and it was by my side for as long as I can remember. All my life, it told me I had to be ready for this moment. And two nights ago, it woke up me and told me to reach here. He also gave me this sword and said it’d help me get into this place.”

Pieces started to click in Sybil’s head. “Show me the sword,” she said.

Jorah handed her the sword. The scabbard was worn out and old, but she’d know the make of the hilt anywhere. She was holding a similar sword in her hand right now.

“Son, listen to me carefully. I need to defeat those things out there and I can’t have you standing in the way of harm. You’d only worry and distract me. Do you understand?”

“But I can’t let you just fight that thing on your own, mother. I know how to fight. You saw me take down that thing just now. Did you see how quick I took off its head? I am good with the blade and I can help.”

“No, you can’t. This was just a small taste of their power. There is much more where that came from.”

“We can fight it together, mother.”

“Not tonight and not ever. You will sit this one out. You have many other battles to fight yet.”

“So what do you want me to do? Just watch?”

“Yes. And learn.”

She kept her own sword against the door and grabbed the hilt of the sword in her hand. She twisted the pommel once, then twice. In one direction, then another and pressed a small lever that appeared in the hilt of the sword. Without a sound, the blade slid from the hilt and clanged into the ground. She handed the pommel back to her son. “If you can fix that blade back in, you’re most welcome to fight alongside me.”

Jorah’s mouth opened and he gasped for words to say. He took the pommel from her and then picked up the blade. He looked at both things in his hands once more. He had no idea that was even possible. In all his years with blades, he’d not seen such a thing happen. His mother picked up her own sword, ruffled his hair and headed out to meet the thirteen once again.

The sword in her hand stirred. “That was heavy. Are you sure you’re a good parent to let your only son play with a blade of such power.”

"He’ll be fine. What he does not know cannot hurt him.”

The sword made a snorting sound. “We could have used another blade in the next fight. Kid is talented.”

“I don’t think I can handle two of you talking around me.”

Above the periphery of the sky, the hive mind of the thirteen was deep in discussion with itself.

Something made it through.

The time stream was supposed to be impenetrable.

Nothing is ever impenetrable. You just need the right key and enough motivation.
Thought we’d seen the last of that wretched blade.
It keeps coming up again and again.
We need to take her down. We need to take her down. We need to take her down.
Call the Nephilim? Call them. Enough is ENOUGH. 

We’ve stretched this out long enough.


Below them, Sybil took the blade and started drawing the patterns she was going to need for whatever was coming next. It’d been a long time since she’d done this and her memory was sketchy. But once she started, the lines and symbols came to her on their own. Like wolves called to the battle with the promise of blood. She heard the sky crackle above her with a dark energy. And she knew, the thirteen had played their final card. The Nephilim were coming. Sweat broke out across her brow and her fingers tightened on the sword’s handle. There was urgency in her strokes now and she checked if all the symbols and wards were in the right places. They looked alright to her, but she knew one mistake and it’d all be over for her and everyone trapped in this time field.

She walked into the pentagram she’d drawn on the ground and took her place in the middle of it. Her sword held at ready, she waited for the sky to split open and vomit out whatever the thirteen had planned next for her.

The sky above her cracked open with a thunderous noise. The colors of the sky melting and amalgamating into something unknown and fierce. Darkness lept out of the sky and struck the boundaries of the time field and for the first time, Sybil gathered the shape of the dome that was above her and her house. Bright lights emerged from the cracks in the sky, blinding and horrible. And from the lights, a figure floated on the currents of an angry wind. Robes fluttering in the air, hair haloed by the light behind it, and in a face dark as obsidian two red eyes glittered with the promise of violence.

One look at that figure took the breath from her chest and made her want to fall down on the ground and kneel in obeisance.

The figure turned slowly to look somewhere above and behind it.

“I was summoned for this shit?” It had a voice like crashing of a thousand drums, of waves smashing themselves to death on the shores of alien beaches, of anger and rage boiled down to their most basic essence. “I was summoned for this!” the voice of the figure repeated.

It looked down back at Sybil. “Human, forgive me.”

Sybil grit her teeth and held tighter on her sword.

“No. I hope you will forgive me for what’s about to happen to you.”

The figure’s eyes belayed any sign of shock or surprise. There was simply a curious look on its face as it stared down at Sybil and slowly started to piece together her intentions.

“You’d not dare, human. Are you going to sacrifice the fate of humanity for your life?”

“Do you really want to wait around and find out?”

“I would not need to,” the voice boomed and a shard of light struck forth from the figure’s hands like a javelin and made its way straight for Sybil. It was fast, but her sword hand was faster. She moved to a side and swatted away the shard of light with the flat of Wraith’s blade. The steel singed and went black where the javelin touched it.

In her head, the sword’s scream of pain was unbearable. She needed to do it quick. But only when the Nephilim was close enough. Another bolt of lightning struck too close and Sybil felt the heat sear her eyebrows. The sword’s blade was slowly spreading with the blackness and soon the blade would be fully black and useless for her. Another bolt shot for her and this time, she was not fast enough. The bolt struck her on her arm, spinning her around where she stood as she fell down on the ground, the sword clattering down but still within her reach.

Watching her prone state, the Nephilim gained enough confidence that Sybil was not going to act on her intentions that it reached closer for a final strike that will obliterate his opposition. It flew right above where Sybil was lying down. A javelin of light appeared in its hand, ready to strike down with all the force of heavens behind it.

"Now," the sword said. Sybil rolled from the path of the javelin to her knees and raised her own sword above her head. She slammed the blade point first into the ground and twisted it.

And so she opened the gates to hell. 

And hell came out to meet her with open arms.

Not dead. Just been very very busy. 

1 comment:

  1. Finally the Gates have opened!

    Moving onto Chapter 9 now! :)