There was a hissing noise, and Kuryo’s body began to disintegrate into a fine dust. The god-slayer opened her mouth, gawking and choking. “How-” she seemed to try and collect herself. “See- you’re a god-slayer.”
“Kuryo wasn’t a god,” I bit back. “He was my friend!” And lover. But close person first and foremost. Sex was just none of her business.
She took another deep breath. Then her eyes zeroed in on me. “Work with me. I will help you get what you want.”
“I want to fix things by stopping you!” I snapped. “Not making things worse-”
“You slayed an entire pantheon! We are no different-”
“That was an accident!” I shrieked. “I’m here to fix that!”
She laughed. “You think you can just bring the gods back to life? Like this?” and she turned, slashing her sword upon one of the hanging bodies. It sliced right through the midriff as I choked on my breath. The body writhed limply, but didn’t move. Again, there was no bleeding. The god-slayer turned to me. “See? They’re no better than snakes, or worms. You can cut them into so many pieces and yet they don’t quite die, unless-” she pointed her sword at me. “You kill them. You’re the god slayer here.”
“Me?” I was baffled! “How-”
“You’re Chaos,” she said sharply. “Aren’t you? Child of the Grim Reaper and Life?”
Oh. Ohhh. Oh. Hereditary powers and stuff. I wanted to smack my forehead, I felt so stupid. Right. Me, killing things. Because grim reaper powers. And yet – could I bring things back to life?
“You’re going to help me,” she said, marching over to another body. With a swing she began hacking at it, sending bits flying in all directions.
“Stop!” I yelled.
She turned to face me, arms extended. “I will! If you agree to help me!”
She hacked at another body. I screamed.
“Tell me what you want!” she shouted, slashing at yet another unfortunate body. I ran to her – and was jerked back.
“GO!” shouted a voice in my head as invisible hands wrestled me around and shoved me towards the door.
Kuryo? That was – okay, I can take a hint. I ran for the door, yanking at the thing.
“It won’t let you out,” called over the god slayer. “You’re stuck.”
I spun, plastering my back to the door. She was slowly advancing on me. “Even if you kill me, you can’t get out.”
Fuck this, I thought. I flicked out my swords, ready to chop her to little itty bitty bits- when the door burst open behind me.
RUN! A voice shouted in my head.
I caught a glimpse of pure horror and anger on the godslayers’ face (which was priceless, by the way) before running and bolting for it.
I could almost see a blue crow flying ahead of me as I ran down the halls. I got halfway through there before I realized I wasn’t running in there anymore. I was in a haze of darkness, being pulled away and through the world.
Oh hey, I knew this feeling. Kuryo?
Hey, a voice answered in my head. Just stay still.
Things slipped by, and it felt like I fell unconscious because, in a blip!, I was suddenly awake in a way I hadn’t been for some time. I felt super awake. Aware. Alert. All that, and more.
We were before what looked like the strangest building I’d ever seen. It was part cathedral, part castle, and part modern mansion. It had spired juttign out and crystal-esque windows and a large gate that we were standing before. And yet there were patches missing in the stones, showing through to wooden foundations. Was that even how houses were built? I wasn’t sure – And took a minute to look around.
We were on a bit of lawn, and that was it. The lawn literally dropped off into space. Well that – that was a unique way to set yourself aside from the neighbors?
I looked around. This building, us, we were just suspended in space. I saw, far away, satellites and planets and stars and even a galaxy. Super cool but-
“Welcome to the Academy,” said Kuryo from my side.
I yelled, jumping back. Then I lunged and tried to hug him. I slipped straight through and fell flat on my face in the grass. I tasted plastic. The lawn wasn’t real? Huh.
Scrambling up, I faced Kuryo. “You’re alive! I mean-” I took another look. He was semi transparent, wearing his usual blue sweatshirt and jeans, but he looked far more miserable than usual. “You’re here?” I said hopefully.
“I am here,” he said grimly. “But here is not where I’d want to be.”
I looked to the building. “What is this?”
“The Academy,” he nodded at the shabby building. “This is it.”
“It’s a building?” I was confused, okay? “I thought it was – a person?”
He gave me a look. “It’s an institution. It is both people and a location.”
Pow, that was the sound of part of my brain struggling to keep up with this. Kuryo put a hand on my shoulder. Then another on my other. He looked me squarely in the eyes. “We need to get Charr back. She is still alive, and the other Charrs- they are going to give birth to the Trinity.”
“Yes. So we have to-” He took a deep breath and glanced at the building. “Negotiate.”
He gave me a look that probably said ‘stop just repeating everything I say’. “Yes.”
“I could have taken her. The godslayer. I’m the child of the grim reaper- I can kill things!”
He frowned, as if he’d already known that. “You can’t kill her,” he said slowly. “She’s just like the academy. An institution. If you cut down one limb, another will regrow.”
I blanked. “She was a person. I saw her.”
“But she was part of an institution. I know this. So-”
Something moved. We both turned and watched as an impressive door swung open – and Charr walked out. The un-pregnant Charr. Our Charr, dressed in her usual plain black shirt and black jeans and thick boots.
Kuryo gawked, squeezing my shoulder with one hand. The other slid to hang by his side. “We need to-” and he seemed lost for words.
I drew myself up. “I’ve got this.” I did. I was a god-slayer! I was the Grim Reaper’s child! I-
The gate swung open sideways, sliding out of the way. Charr smirked haughtily in a way that just wasn’t ‘her’. “Welcome, world weaver,” she said nastily. Then, with a tilt of the head at me she added “and god slayer.”
We looked at each other. I guess everyone’s getting the fancy titles, then?
Charr gestured in a wide sweep of the arm. “Come, enter,” she said, and it sounded almost sensual, in a not right kind of way.
I looked to Kuryo, but he was glaring at Charr. Squaring his shoulders, he marched on towards her. I followed, and Charr smirked as we drew to her side. The gate shut with a clang, without me having even seen it shut.