Episode 6: Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And L
Posted 10 June 2004 - 09:23 PM
"Needs must," grunted Konstantine. The mercenary glanced at Gabriel's sword, "Pawned your guns?"
"Something like that," said Gabriel.
Konstantine glanced at the Accountant, who was staring, icily at Jesus, munching on cereal, "He's a hard bastard."
"He knows kung-fu," said Gabriel cocking his head towards the Son of God.
"You wouldn't have guessed it, looking at him."
"Or from reading the Bible," commented Sam.
"Now, you lads stay there. We'll handle this," said Gabriel, though his look towards the briefcase sitting on the bench, revealed something else. Konstantine nodded curtly, understanding.
Jesus discarded the bowl of frosties and greentop. Felt the power swell within him, "That's grrrreat."
The Accountant smiled and threw out his arms. The air around his hands seemed to swirl. It fused with a bright searing light and a sword appeared in both hands. They seemed to be created from marble, but marble possessed, the blades, though unmoving, seemed to squirm and pulse beneath the sheen of reflection.
"These are void swords."
"They're incontinent?" asked Gabriel.
The Accountant sighed. "No. They are nothing and what they slice will become nothing. They do not trully exist, they are complete nothing, the void, bent to my will, into the shape of a sword. The conundrum of nothing formed to ressemble something yet still remaining nothing is a paradox you will never get to ponder, as this blade will not kill you. No, when touched by it, you will cease to exist entirely. Death to many is just a hurdle, a semi-colon, this... well, this is the fullstop. This," he said with a flourish, "is finality."
Jesus drew himself up, brought his sword into a guard. Gabriel, beside him, mirrored his movements.
"You are as one," commented the Accountant, "this will be... interesting."
"No," said Jesus, "I think you'll find it fatal."
"So much for turning the other cheek," said the Accountant.
He strode forward and brought his blades round. Gabriel went left, Jesus jinked right and steel grated against void. The accountant whirled, hacking at each of them alternately, driving the Son of God and his guardian angel back, back towards the platform.
Pertussis went to Konstantine's side. The old mercenary looked up, "You."
"Today has been a day of suprises, boyo," said Pertussis, "now, eat up."
He passed another bowl of Frosties to Konstantine and winked. Konstantine ate to the background chorus of swordplay.
Posted 10 June 2004 - 09:32 PM
Jesus ducked under one of the empty blades, as Gabriel leapt the second, clearing it with grace.
Shaking his head in amazement, his eyes settled on the suitcase that the Accountant had left on the side in the rush. His eyes darted to his own briefcase. He smiled.
Posted 10 June 2004 - 10:16 PM
In the first few minutes of battle the entropic particles of the Accountant's swords had already erased several planets, a few hundred stars, and Sheffield.
Nathaniel, Angel of Fire and the Firmament watched with horror as his carefully crafted bits of reality faded into unreality from his workshop in downtown heaven.
"The bastard erased Sheffield! That was some of my best flipping work! And now it's gone. Even I don't remember it any more. Bastard."
"Truly a sad day for old fashioned angelic craftsmanship," replied Ezikiel, the Angel of Thrones whom Nathaniel had been using as a drinks coaster.
"And Uranus! Uranus is gone!"
"Actually as a ball of light I don't have..."
Another strike, another spark, and then he was gone.
"Not you too Ezikiel! Now what am I gonna' put my ambrosia on?"
Posted 10 June 2004 - 10:31 PM
Nixon laughed. He flexed his newly healed wings. Cracked his newly healed knuckles.
Sarah shuddered. She fell back further, clutching her sword arm which was bleeding heavily from a well-timed stroke. The Sword hung limply from her hand, it’s flame flickering dimly.
That’s a whole lot of evil, the sane side of her thought.
Nothing we can’t handle, the other side thought back.
I’d like to believe that but…
While they’re all connected, we can’t do jack.
The bond needs to be broken.
But there’s nothing we can do.
No, you’re right. It’s us against him in the showdown to end all showdowns.
I wonder just where that power comes from.
Elsewhere by the looks of it.
A great fountain of the strange light burst into the air in the distance. Nixon answered with his own burst.
“So, angel,” Nixon said, “Are we going to do this thing or not”
How the hell are we meant to fight against that? You can almost taste the evil.
How the hell am I meant to know? I’m just the insane part of you.
Do you think…maybe we could…draw on all things good?
How do you mean?
I…I don’t know. I just think – maybe if we sort of…borrow the good energy from the world we could fight again.
Sarah looked up at the arch duke moving towards her. Her wings lifted her up again but this time she stayed in the air.
So how do we do this thing? Get this power?
I’m going to try something.
Sarah raised her swordarm stiffly and held the Sword high above her head.
“Uh, by the power of, you know…God and Jesus and stuff,” she muttered.
That’s not nearly good enough – let me do it.
“Ahem. By the power of the Lord that guides us,” some of the time, “And his son that was sacrificed for us,” that must have sucked, “I call upon all that is good in the world to aid me in this fight”
Nothing. Damn. Back to the drawing board.
There was a strange humming. Sarah looked up and saw the Sword suddenly catch on fire again, blazing even stronger than before. The humming grew louder and suddenly Sarah was hit by a wash of strong light seemingly pouring from all directions. The light became so bright that she could not be seen within it, even Nixon had to shade his eyes from it’s brilliance.
The light expanded and built itself into a great shimmering sphere centred on the girl.
The humming stopped.
I think this is going to hurt.
The light drew in with a faint rushing sound and a brutal wind whipped around the area. Anyone caught in it was knocked the ground. All but Nixon. With a sigh the light had disappeared into Sarah’s slight form. She floated gently to the ground again and landed a few feet from Nixon. Her swordarm was whole again. And she could feel the power running through her veins. She snapped her wings out to their full extent and raised the sword before her face in salute.
“On last dance, arch-duke,” she said.
Everything was still for a moment. Then Nixon laughed again.
“One last dance, angel,” he spat and rushed forward.
Once again the angel and the demon crashed against each other in a great explosion of light.
Posted 10 June 2004 - 11:13 PM
"Never mind," Pale answered getting up. Vanessa was glowing blue and black.
"Hmm?" Nix asked helping Pallorius up and getting his sword ready.
"Oh damn," Pallorius sighed looking back, "D'Jannk's in a whole lot of... something there, looks like the transformation's nearly done. Whatever it's doing, it ain't nice for D'Jannk."
"Better finish this lass off then Doc," Nix smiled and unfurled his wings.
Vanessa darted, but Pallorius had already moved to the side and forward striking with his sword, Nix also moved in, but Vanessa was even faster now and her blows more powerful, she could take on both Pallorius and Nix, alternating between Sword and CD.
Nix bore down on her but she was just a tiny bit quicker enabling her to dodge rather than parry his blows. Pallorius went in low and kicked at her leg with enough force to break it, but it didn't and his high stroke was parried by a CD which carried on to strike at his chest. Pallorius fell back and took another lunge, simultaneously with Nix's swing, but Vanessa had moved.
Another strike, a jump in the air and Nix and Pallorius swapped sides.
"Okay, Nix, let's co-ordinate," Pallorius shouted as both backed away from the she-demon.
"Right, what's on the cards," the angel bellowed.
"Illorius says he's got a wavelength."
"Oh yeah, he's pretty loud, and disgruntled. Let's go," Nix said taking a few steps, flowing into the air and into Vanessa.
Pallorius' attack was perfectly timed and while Nix went for the head, Pallorius struck at the ankle. As Nix and Pallorius moved to the side and deflected blows Vanessa stumbled a little, wounds on neck and ankle.
"You guys are smart. A demon and an angel, in unison. What can I say..." within seconds she dispatched a whole fury of AOL CDs, Nix ducked and weaved tacking several hits, Pallorius was quicker and used another dimension to avoid most of them, the sword too care of the others.
Then he saw his chance. Gripping the sword in both hands he put all he had in him within it and moved like lightning to Vanessa, he facked two lunged, a stroke, dodged one, Nix was at her, caught her sword, pushed her down and Pallorius bored down with everything he had into her chest.
The spine snapped. Black and blue blood spurted out. The muscles spasmed and a wave of greyness passed from her outwards, then collecting itself returned to her body and made it implode.
Then there was nothing, just the sword stuck in the ground and glowing a little. Pallorius on it grip, Nix on his back beside it breathing heavily.
"Whoosh. That was neat. Never seen anything like it in all my years. And that's quite a few years," he said getting up.
"Well, it's demonic. And it's Agath. Mort'hius' sword this, did something to it I guess, perhaps he had a grudge with AOL," Pallorius smiled and replaced the sword in it's scabbard.
"Now for that scumbag..." Illorius licked proverbial lips.
Nixon felt it, the Accountant felt it. Yet in the grand scheme of things it was hardly anything, just a slight deminishing of power. So slight.
(unless I screw up again)
Posted 10 June 2004 - 11:19 PM
one hand, thats all it'll take thought Tarchimache, avoiding another thrust.
Tycho was starting to get worried, he could see it. Her movements were becoming erratic, more hasty, less precise.
"You're losing, Tycho"
"Silence, you are nothing more than a half-breed. A cast off. You can't beat me!" screamed Tycho.
"True enough, but I can stop you." said Tarchimache "Your corporeal time ends here."
"My corporeal......you can't. You don't have the skill to perform incantations at that level. I am what I am."
It came down to this. Do or Die time.
"Not for much longer." Black flame coursed down his face from the eye. The pain caused his vision to waver. Tycho took a half step back in fear. "Whats the matter? Afraid? Like you said, I'm a half breed. The heavenly knowledge, skill and teaching, and this eye." The flames withdrew.
The burns covered half of Tarchimaches body. One wing was all but skeletal. He grinned. Tycho turned away in horror at the half twisted visage.
Thankyou. Tarchimache moved like lightning. His hand gripped Tycho by the head. His sword pierced her heart. The body fell. Tycho struggled in his grasp.
"NO!!!!" she screamed "Let me go! You can't be doing this!"
"I can, and I am. Don't worry, you won't die. Not until I do." Tarchimache grimaced.
He proceeded to eat the incorporeal demon.
Tarchimache planted his sword in the ground, and collapsed.
Where am I? What did he do!!!!!!???
Like the digs, bitch? It's amazing what you can learn from a captive Agath. And it's amazing what you can pick up in hell.
You've melded us?? came the wieghtless thought.
Yes Tycho. I let the eye run at its fullest. Gave me that extra I needed. There is no escape for you. You are doomed to live the rest of my days, watching. Never having any control. I can even mute you at will. And when I die, you go with me. Any last words?
But all that came back was silence. Tycho madly running through the mind she was imprisoned in, searching for her escape. She was suddenly running through what felt like treacle. She couldn't move. She felt the sensation spread all over her, trapping her. All she could do now was blink, and watch.
Tarchimache dragged himself to his knees. His pain was nothing to do with fatigue. He caught half of his reflection in his sword and smiled. His face. As it always was, perfect. He moved to the left.
For the first time in his life, Tarchimache wept.
The right side of his face, and presumably his body, was a ruin. The scars would never heal. The eye burned brightly. It would never withdraw now and would kill him unless he relied on it.
How long he stayed there for, he didn't know.
He got to his feet.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 07:12 AM
"Looks like they're in disarray sarge, watch out, here come a few," shouted a soldier, it was followed by bursts of fire from the guns.
The Brits were right, the Accountant's army was beginning to break up. They were not exactly fleeing, but the unity that there was from Vanessa began to now vanish. Now only smaller demons could barely control those under them and had no idea where they were to be fighting. Or what FOR. Soon a few demons began to run while most others turned berserk crashing into their opposing armies. When they crashed into the Agath army Vilushka and Balthasar were most pleased for more meat.
Fred and Ednos could not quite believe it but the tide of battle was turning.
And yet... and yet her two unresolved conflicts were still alive - Sarah and Nixon battled with such fury that no-one could bear looking there, and there was the thing with D'Jannk...
(unless I screw up again)
Posted 11 June 2004 - 10:36 AM
"Hide this milkman,"
"That's a briefcase not a milkman,"
"Quiet! Just hide it,"
"Who's is it?" asked Pertussis, putting the briefcase up his shirt.
"His!" Konstantine pointed at the Accountant.
"No, that's his," said Pertussis pointing at a second case.
Konstantine just smiled.
"Just hide it somewhere okay?"
"Consider it done,"
"Somewhere other than your shirt. Oh and whatever you do, don't open it."
Konstantine turned and went to see if the Four could help out Jesus and Gabriel.
"Don't open it,"
It was like a red rag to a bull. Pertussis opened the case.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 02:58 PM
The Accountant wheeled and smashed a bone shattering fist into Gabriel's stomach, sending him hurtling, through the wall of the lobby, through a canned drinks machine and onto the tracks.
Jesus stepped forward, but was steadily overpowered as the Accountant sped up his rate of blows. The Void blades were gradually whittling Jesus' own sword, chipping long slivers from the edges which would drop off and dissolve in mid-air.
"You only live twice, Jesus," said the Accountant, stepped back and bringing his right arm round in an unstoppable swing. Jesus' sword shattered, exploding into a mist of glinting, spinning fragments and the Son of God fell back with a scream.
The Accountant loomed over him, raised a Void Blade to strike right down on him. There was a roar, off to his left the Accountant twisted and punched Sam out of the air in mid flight.
The Accountant turned back and Gabriel, forehead glistening with blood, stood over the Messiah, sword raised.
The Accountant sighed. "How tedious. You angels... you're nothing more than vermin. Extremely arrogant rats with wings."
The Accountant launched into an attack, Void Blades a blur in his hands. Gabriel matched that. Forced the Accountant back, feigned left and hacked. The Accountant flinched, recoiled and straightened. He reached up. One of the lenses of his glasses was shattered. He discarded them. He didn't need them, anyway, but, in his job, you had to keep up appearances.
The Accountant threw himself into the next attack, but Gabriel once again matched his speed and his ferocity, blow for blow. Gabriel's sword found the Accountant's hip, sliced it, then, in the follow up, Gabriel dragged the blade across the Accountant's chest. Another wild, slicing downward stroke cut open the side of the Accountant's nexk.
The Accountant doubled over with a groan, gasping from the pain.
Gabriel stepped forward and was in the middle of his backswing when the Accountant threw out an arm. The angel's sword clattered from his hand. The Void Blade had gone straight through him, the point was protruding from his back. The stomach around the entrance wound immediately dissolved into nothing. Konstantine watched in horror as patches of Gabriel simply began vanishing.
The Accountant dragged the Void blade back and Gabriel slumped backwards, slowly disappearing as the patches of nothingness spread.
The Accountant touched his neck and winced. "I've never.... felt.... pain before. Mortal life is full of this? I'm surprised you haven't all packed it in already," he glanced down at Gabriel, oddly serene as the Void slowly ate his body. "That must be excruciating," he paused for a moment, then smiled, "Good."
He turned towards where Jesus had been. Much to everyone's surprise, The Son of God was standing. He brought the sword round and struck The Accountant's side. The Accountant stumbled back.
"I intend to make your fate even worse, Accountant," said the Messiah, a sudden, mad grin on his face.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 04:04 PM
"Don't you come near me Messiah! Or any of you! Stay where you are. I'll use it, I will."
"He's bluffing," said Konstantine.
"Oh I am? Am I?!" In near hysterics and with a triumpant grin the Accountant forced the locks on the case open, and his grin froze. "What... what's this?!" He yelled, holding up a ham sandwich.
"My lunch," said Konstantine.
"But. Where? Who's got it?" his eyes darted around the station madly then came to rest upon Pertussis sitting on his bench, briefcase laying open on his lap. His faced bathed in the strange black glow from the ultrafiltrate of God's power.
"Oh no," groaned the Accountant looking up at the Messiah before him, his sword ready, "you've got to be taking the piss."
As Gabriel's face slowly vanished from all existence, which included re-writting parts of the Bible, his disembodied mouth opened wide and a loud, joyful laugh rang out, echoing around the empty station long after its owner had faded away.
but it seems that whilst I am Amazing you are Ultimate."- Lu
Posted 11 June 2004 - 04:27 PM
"So this is war." said Ednos with a faint quiver in his voice." Ive never seen so much death, why , why did it have to happen like this?"
" It's just the way it is lad, you get used to it over time, you have to otherwise you don't survive.We just have to get on with what weve got and work upwards from there." Fred shrugged his shoulders."We just have to work upwards."
Ednos looked at Fred and thought about this simple philophosy, the simple logic made sense to him.
"Fred?" He said feeling much happier.
"Let's go see what we can do about this Nixon fella."
"I dont think theres much we can do." said Fred looking at Ednos an expression of query on his face.
" We'll see." Said Ednos with a glint in his eye."Afterall we have to start working upwards from somewhere."
Fred reflected on this and seeing as he didnt want to argue with Ednos with that look in his eye he agreed.
" Alright then."And they set off towards Nixon and Sarah.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 05:04 PM
The will of Nixon felt his power begin to ebb, as first Vanessa fell, then drain away as the Accountant was struck. Slowly the light around him faded, and as his physical form returned, Sarah paused and looked at the panting demon.
For the first time since her hormones first clashed with divine destiny, she smiled with genuine pleasure.
"Should have chosen your friends better, Demon," she said.
"I despise you," he retorted, grasping his blade.
She grinned. "Looks like I won. I just thought you should let that sink in. I won, humanity is saved, and you are about to die. How does it feel?"
He simply glared at her. Out of the corner of his eye, he had noticed something. He stared angrily at her face, willing her not to notice.
She didn't. "You want to rest up a bit?" she taunted. "You must be feeling very old, right now, after all..."
Nixon struck at her weak point, the patch of darkness in her cloak of light. There was a clash as the sword with no name ("Good boy, Bastard," he thought") bit into the viel of all the was pure and holy.
The ripple of power knocked back everyone, demon, angel and Englishman alike. Nixon locked his arm, squinting through the light. Through the howling and the brightness, he could make out the shining, shimmering purity being sucked into his dread blade. The Holy power had protected Sarah from the swords stroke itself, but it was draining away as the blade bit deeper.
Nixon looked into his enemy's eyes, and saw real pain. Her halo had faded, and her wings were gone. He laughed, and then let out a raw of pure evil and malice that momentarily overode even the sound of the holy power as it evaporated into the evil sword.
Then he looked back into the eyes, and realised that what he had mistaken for pain was something quite different: it was hope. Sarah smiled at him, feeling the shackles of her angelic destiny falling away.
"Thank you, Nixon," she whispered over the storm so that only he could hear. "But I don't need to be an angel to know how to use this."
Nixon tried to pull back, but the sword had him locked. He stood, unable to move, but fully able to percieve his doom. The holy sword, consenting to be used by a human for the greater good, rose and fell; and as it pierced his armour and ended his life, Sarah knew that her mortal life was hers to do with as she wished.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 05:42 PM
God gripped the arm of his easy chair. He'd been feeling sick for a while but now he felt faint. He could feel that something had happened to Jesus. Then he felt the brief case open and his mind flooded with darkness. He felt the grip on the arm of the chair weaken. He was a second away from oblivion when the arm exploded beneath his grip. His mind was suddenly clear and he saw the destruction that had embraced Earth. A moment ago this would have destroyed him but now he was strong again. He could take the pain. He had to get in contact.
A hush lay over the battlefield. The demons were dead or fleeing, their master dead. Sarah collapsed to her knees and wept: after all she'd been through it was to be expected. A flame took hold of Nixon's body, a black flame like Pertussis had seen embracing a tree in his nightmare. The fire burned to the sky before falling like water in a fountain to the ground. The earth split where it landed and Nixon's matter gradually moved through the flame and to Hell below. As he descended the Messiah, Gabriel, the Four and Pertussis clutching the brief case ascended from the Tube station. Everyone gathered around Sarah. Jesus bent down and put his arm around her, pulling her up to his feet.
"So the End of the World is at an end?" asked Lyndhurst.
"Yes, I guess so." replied Jesus looking up from Sarah
"So what now?" asked Ednos
"I don't know. I guess Dad will."
"So where is God?"
Pertussis started twitching, then convulsing, then rising in the air slightly. He opened his mouth and left it open.
THIS IS GOD
"Ah, right on time."
"Hello Dad." said Jesus "You could have just phoned you know."
I KNOW BUT THIS FELT MORE APPROPIATE. PLUS I WANTED TO SEE WHAT THE FUSS WAS ABOUT. DON'T REALLY SEE WHY EVERYONE'S BEEN POSSESSING THIS FELLA BUT THERE YOU GO
"So what's going to happen now Dad? We've saved the world but it's not worth saving," said Jesus. Sarah was standing on her own now. Fred was kneeling infront of Pertussis geneflecting.
YOU HAVE SAVED ME. I DID NOT THINK YOU COULD DEFEAT THE ACCOUNTANT. HE TOOK ME BY SURPRISE AND EVEN I WAS POWERLESS TO STOP HIM. YET, YOU, YOU BELIEVERS SHOWED THAT GOOD WILL ALWAYS TRIUMPH.
"But triumph for what? We have nothing. Look around you." said Gabriel
Pertussis span slowly around.
DO NOT WORRY. I BUILT THIS PLACE IN SEVEN DAYS. I CAN PUT IT RIGHT BEFORE YOU KNOW IT. THOSE WHO DIED SHALL RISE AGAIN. THE CITIES THAT WERE BURNT WILL BE REMADE. THE EARTH SHALL BE AS IT WAS. EXCEPT...
"Except what?" asked Ednos
YOU. ALL OF YOU. I CAN DO NOTHING FOR YOU. IT WAS YOUR CHOICE TO FIGHT THIS, TO SAVE THE WORLD. YOU USED FREE WILL TO NOT STAND STILL BUT TO FIGHT. I CANNOT CHANGE YOUR WILL AND YOU WILL HAVE TO LIVE WITH IT. THOSE OF YOU WHO DIED DO HAVE A CHOICE. DEATH WAS NOT YOUR WILL AND THEREFORE I CAN RAISE YOU IF YOU WISH. BUT FIRST, THE BRIEFCASE.
Jesus went opened the case and took out the Ultrafiltrate.
MAKE THE MILKMAN DRINK
Jesus looked quizically.
"He isn't Kevin Costner you know."
JUST DO IT
Jesus shrugged whilst Ednos noted God's advertisement for Nike. Jesus reached up and pour the Ultrafiltrate into Pertussis.
I AM WHOLE AGAIN
White light streamed out of Pertussis, blinding everyone. A roaring sound filled the air and deafened everyone. Then, blackness.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 06:10 PM
D'Jannk looked up to the gloating Illorius. "Pale.. help.. help me.."
Pale heard, and tried. But Illorius' hatred was strong enough to keep him in control.
Pallorius strode towards D'Jannk, who closed his eyes, and lost conciousness.
The demon opened his eyes, looked around. Jesus was sitting next to him. The battlefield was strangely silent.
"What.. where's Illorius?"
"Somewhere else. They have their own issues to deal with."
D'Jannk blinked slowly. "Is it over?"
"Yes. Well, very nearly." Jesus smiled warmly. D'Jannk looked at him quizically for a moment, then saw the person approaching from behind the Son of God. Tears fell, sizzling as they hit the ground.
She ran over, knelt down beside him, hugging him. She was crying too, and also looking with concern at D'Jannk's lower torso. He looked down too, and saw there was still some translucency, with only the occasional browser window.
"Not even Dad could fully undo the evil of AOL 666. But it's contained to the area immediately around the CD-penetration wound. And it won't spread."
The demon frowned. Then he raised his claw, and tore away the affected flesh. Black blood spurted onto the grass in front of him. Wait, not entirely black. More red, and paler.
D'Jannk laughed heartily, tears now pouring from his eyes. In their wake, his black skin had picked up golden tones.
"And so your evil is washed away. I wish you two a good life. Goodbye, D'Jannk. And to you, Nancy." Jesus began to turn away.
"Wait! That is not my name. Not any more."
Jesus raised an eyebrow.
"D'Jannk.." he raised the chunk of translucent flesh "..is dead." He threw it away, and flexed his wings - now far from black, they were shining gold. He embraced Nancy, then stared into Jesus' eyes and nodded.
Jesus nodded back, and left.
"I am Janek."
Sandwiches are better than people. You can put anything you want in a sandwich, and it won't complain.
You spin me right round, baby, right round, in a manner depriving me of an inertial reference frame. Baby.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 06:12 PM
Posted 11 June 2004 - 06:13 PM
"What are you going to do no Antony?" Konstantine asked bringing round a few more tea-pots for them all to ingest.
"Well, there's a government job waiting for me and I guess demon-lore is a speciality along with myth and archaeology," he said faintly, almost dreaming.
"You'll take it?" Lyndhurst asked, dipping a Rich Tea.
"I guess I could, I shouldn't think Helen would be too happy though. She'd have to make it on her own."
"'Course, she's alive again now. Strange all this. Very strange," Gabriel sighed, "all very very much so."
"I guess I'll be off now, you all know where to find me, I am sure, everyone, Sarah, Nix, you there in the corner, yeah," Pale got up and shook everyone's hand and began to leave.
"Wait, what about Illorius!?" Gabriel shouted.
"Well, there was this thing..."
"Pale... Tony. Oi! Get up," Illorius shouted. Pale shook himself awake and opened his eye.
"Oh," he said inwardly.
"What was that about? We were going to.. you know... D'Jannk."
"I think he had something else prepared for him," Pale sighed and tried to get up. But it was a bit harder.
"Clever thing there, a bit of a mental fight? Out cold. Both of us," Illorius was smirking, "I think we'll need to sort something out here. Not getting enough control.."
"Get over it, you've had your control. I've got a life to get back to now," Pale was finally standing up.
"And what will you have me do mortal?"
"You'll help me. Sure you will," Pale dused himself off and looked around. He was in the near-ruins of Edinburgh. Things were getting back to normal.
"Ah, g'day there. Pale, Illorius, gotta thank you guys," Jesus smiled and winked.
"For er... Jesus. Erm, hi. For what?" Pale shook his head and adjusted his cloak.
"New regime in Hell, defeating Vanessa, helping save the world... that sorta stuff," Jesus paced about a little.
"I did kinda screw up..."
"Oh come on! You did well. Things will get back now. You know, normal."
"Oh, I think I'll... I'll. D'you know. I'll meet some friends."
"Good on ya," Jesus smiled and walked away.
"How... how simple."
Pale finished. And left.
(unless I screw up again)
Posted 11 June 2004 - 06:37 PM
Tarchimache dragged himself round the corner. He ground his sword point into the ground.
"Sweet mother of god" gasped Konstantine.
"Did we win?" stammered Tarchimache.
"We won. Hell is in good....ish hands. Nixon is gone. The Accountant is gone. Dad is fine." Said Jesus. "You look like shit."
Tarchimache allowed a wry grin to touch his lips.
"You paid a heavy price for us Tarchimache" said Gabriel.
A tear ran from his good eye. "Paid gladly. So, what are you going to do now?" said the ruined angel, turning to Jesus.
"I can't heal you. It's beyond anyone. But you already know that."
Tarchimache nodded. "I'm tired, my Lord. The running, the fighting, the killing. It ends today." He turned to Gabriel. "You really don't remember me do you." Tarchimache laughed. "Do this last thing for me. A heavenly nobles death. Please." He offered his sword to Gabriel
"You cannot be serious." protested Gabriel "I won't do it. It's plain..."
"Let him have this Gabriel. He deserves it his own way."
Gabriel took the sword. Tarchimache knelt. He stared at the savior. "Thankyou"
"For services to the greater good. For fighting with the army of heaven. Tarchimache, we give you your final rest. Take it. May God be with you."
"Amen" said Tarchimache.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 07:19 PM
"Gabriel," said God, "Gabriel, Gabriel, Gabriel. Wiped from all existence, eh? Now you know what aetheists make me feel like. Haha. My little joke."
"I was always better at visual comedy. The giraffe, for instance."
"The giraffe was a good one, sir."
"Indeed," said God. "Look, this is all a bit awkward, isn't it? But I want you to know that I'm very much prepared to... how should I say this? Re-commission you? Yes. Re-commission you. Jesus, well, he will be a bit of a lad, won't he? Haha. The Amazon, well, I went down there and did some explaining. All sorted. I may well have been a bit rash. J calls it my Soddom and Gomorra Syndrome. Haha. What I'm saying is, Gabby-"
"Gabriel, sorry. What I'm saying is, you're welcome back anytime. Understand? Open arms, big party, St Peter doing his Elvis impersonation, the full shebang. What do you say, sir?"
"I've made a lot of friends down there, sir, as well as developing a new love for humanity in general. Where anybody needs him and doesn't know how to contact wrongly convicted escapee soldiers of fortune, I'll be there with my slow motion gun toting and, well, this," he hefted Tarchimache's sword,"I'd feel bad if I just let it dust over some mantlepiece."
"Yes. I know how you feel. The old omnicogniscence," said God, tapping his temple, "Still, anytime you want to come back, maybe play some chess, talk about the old times...?"
"I'll definitely pop in now and again, sir."
"One day, you'll need to pass on the pistols to someone else, you know that."
"And I will, sir. Just.... not yet. Not while everything's looking so," he looked around, "so new."
"Good, then. Cartrycaries."
"Oh sorry. That's not a word. Yet. It just means, literally, a completely satisfactory outcome in every way comprehendable for everyone concerned. There's going to be a significant increase in literacy, as you might be able to tell."
"Well, then, sir. Cartrycaries."
God smiled, turned and was gone.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 07:49 PM
"No... to painful. We've all been through a lot. I didn't want to go and see them again in case... it made me change my mind."
"So you have decided?"
"Yes. I think so," he paused, "You know, I never wanted to join this crusade, never by choice. I was just... caught up in it. That doesn't make it any less meaningful of course, but my coming along was an accident, I played my part purely by chance."
His companion smiled, "you should know by now that there is no chance."
"You honestly still believe that? If anything, this whole sequence of events had made it clear to me how precarious life is, the entire fate of all existance hung by a thread. No, fate died this past week."
"Was there ever any doubt though? That you'd win? Good triumphs over evil, wrongs are righted and there's a happy ending for everyone to enjoy."
"This isn't some story."
"I think we both know that that isn't true. A storyteller knows that the Tale that will touch people the most is one where nothing really changes. People like the comfort of a world the same as the one they started with, or at least a world with the potential to become the normality that they cherish. Look around, that's what has happened now."
"But this isn't the same. Things are different now."
"That's the best thing about normality, anything can be normal, so long as it's what you're used to."
"If anything that makes me more sure than ever. If normality is being a failed journalist, the grim reaper or a baby with an assault rifle... well then I think this Tale needs to lose another character."
"You are sure? There is no going back."
"I've been a coward all my life, when people have stepped forwards to fight, I've stepped back, I've never had the bravery to do things right. I'm not going to live like that any more. I'm going to step up, cross the frontier, and face whatever lies ahead of me. And since I can't live like that, I'll die like this."
Azrael, Angel of Death, raised his arm, and brought down his scythe.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 10:09 PM
They had been sitting in the café for a couple of hours, not really talking much, just enjoying the silence that comes between people who have shared momentous events.
She had been thinking about what to do next. She thought she might find her parents and figured they’d probably be in Edinburgh still – wondering where she was. Her 19th birthday had passed unnoticed during the apocalypse.
She knew Jesus was staring at her and wasn’t surprised when came to sit beside her.
“How are you?” he asked, kindly.
“You mean despite the whole not having really existed thing?” Sarah said, “I’m alright”
“What will you do now?”
“I think I’d better find my parents, if they exist, they might be worried about me,” Sarah said, swilling her tea in its cup.
Jesus looked at her sadly. He’d had no choice when he became Destiny’s tool and knew how she must be feeling. At least his family and memories were real.
“There’s no way we could truly thank you for what you’ve done,” he said, suddenly smiling, “But I think I know a way to make it alright”
Sarah looked up at him quizzically. Jesus smiled his benevolent smile and took her hand. He leant down and whispered a word into her ear. Sarah’s eyes widened.
There was a flash of light. Then nothing.
“Sarah! Sarah!” someone was calling.
Sarah Brown was spending her 19th birthday in Edinburgh, she was rather fond of the city. They were in a cathedral and she had wandered off on her own. She found herself staring up at an image of Christ and for the shortest of moments she was sure he smiled and winked at her.
“Sarah! We’ll be late for lunch,” her father was calling.
Sarah stared up at Jesus and seemed puzzled. Then she shook her head and ran off to join her family. The eyes of Christ followed her and the mouth moved enough to whisper a word.
Posted 11 June 2004 - 10:32 PM
A mental scream between the stars, strecthed out infinitely.
I REFUSE to die! This CANNOT be over!
A meteor, orbiting the sun, suddenly flared with a magnificent corona, blazing with all the colours of the rainbow.
Stow it, Nixon.
You got beaten. By a girl. Now shut up and deal with it.
...Who the Heaven are you?
A peal of deep, tired yet timeless laughter echoed through the void.
You should know me, Sane. You lived in my stomach, after all."
Silence, whelp! You whimpering troubles my rest. You may refer to me as Satan; you lost your right to a position of privilage when you allowed the Accountant to die.
Through force of will alone, Nixon became corporeal on Satan's metoer. He saw the Demon's frozen grin, a rictus in ice.
Master, he pleaded, you are powerful. Please, another chance! Another body! I can...
You can what?! ...Pah. It matters not. I can do nothing for you.
This is God's Universe once more; I have no power. I am as doomed as you.
Through massive effort of will, Nixon maintained his shape.
Doomed? Surely, here you are safe?
Nixon! You forgot to check.
Nixon blinked, and looked around. His eyes widened.
Yes! This meteor is headed for the sun. You are about to experience the true horror of flame, Nixon; the true fires of hell.
The ex-Duke of Hell attempted to disencorporate, but he felt something binding him to the meteor. He noticed that his master and former place of residence had a wider smile than he was used to.
NO! he screamed. What about Hell?
Hell, chuckled Lucifer, as the sun loomed nearer and the ice began to melt, Hell will persist. After all, it is nothing but a state of mind.
Posted 12 June 2004 - 06:50 AM
"No, trust me, I had enough food as Banquet to last me forever. Well, till Thursday at least."
"Will you be going back to Hell?"
"I don't think I have much choice, a demon can't exactly walk the Earth in these days, its only your Saviour's glamour thats keeping me from being noticed here. Still... I don't particularly want to anymore. It's strange, I spent most of this adventure trying to get back home, and when I did I couldn't wait to be out of there again. I..., I don't know, I just don't feel that I belong there anymore. I guess I don't belong anywhere."
A hand fell onto his scaley shoulder, "That's not true," said the kind voice of the Messiah, "You'd be more than welcome to come back with me."
Lamento's eye's widened in amazement, "Do you mean that Lord?"
"Of course. After all, you did as much to save the world as anyone here, you have shown in yourself that what you are doesn't define who you are, but that each and every one of you has the right to choose." Jesus chuckled, "All four of you Horsemen managed to show that with remarkable confusion. So Lamento Talukuk, what do you say?"
Lamento opened his mouth to reply, and then stopped himself, "Actually, no. At least, not like that. But you said I had the right to choose?"
"Ah, of course," said Jesus and nodded.
A soft light bathed Lamento with an intensity that slowly grew to a point where only a faint shadow of a figure could be seen, and then that shadow changed. When the light faded what was left was dressed in a suit, but not grey like the dour bringers of his destiny, this one did its best to stand out. Black as night with a sharp cut, a crisp white shirt and a firey red tie.
Lamento caught his new reflection in the cafe window, and smiled a smile of perfect pearly white teeth, he ran his newly made fingers through his soft, dark hair and watched with satisfaction as it sprang back up to its gelled position. Spreading his arms wide he turned back to his friends,
"Now," he said, "who wouldn't buy a house from this guy?"
but it seems that whilst I am Amazing you are Ultimate."- Lu
Posted 12 June 2004 - 09:22 AM
"This is it," she said, moving the trolley's contents around and checking the notes. The trainee walked to the door to open it. The nurse looked up.
"You'll have to hide that crucifix," she said motioning to the cross around the girls neck.
"He has a phobia of all religous iconography"
The girl buttoned the top button of her dark blue uniform, hiding the crucifix. She looked through the window as the nurse portioned out some drugs.
"What's wrong with him?"
"All signs point to a stroke, but the doctors can't find any damage on the CAT scan. He's totally unresponsive, except to certain triggers, like crucifixes,"
"How did he get here?"
"He was found on the streets burnt and babbling. They took him to Barts' and they treated him before sending him here, as we couldn't find any family,"
"Do we even know his name?"
"Yes, we think we do. Jones. It was written on his cap."
"Appears he was a milkman."
Pertussis sat in the chair, staring vacantly out of the window, his mouth open slightly and a sliver of saliva running down his chin.
"Now, Mr Jones," said the nurse entering the room. "Looks like someone needs a wipe," She wiped the drool off his face before setting a tray of food down. "Here's your dinner,"
She set the tray down on the table and went over to make the bed. The trainee put down a cup of tea on the table.
"Does he take it with mil..."
"Don't say that word. That's another trigger. We think it brings back too many memories."
"He has it black?"
"He has everything back. We even put orange juice on his cornflakes," said the nurse placing the drugs into Pertussis' food and tea.
"Okay Mr Jones, we'll leave you alone. Try to eat your food. I'll be back later to put you into bed and change your pan,"
The nurses left, turning down the lights as they went. Pertussis just sat staring out of the window, looking at a tree outside in the grounds. He'd seen the tree before and now he was just waiting for it to burst into flame.
Posted 12 June 2004 - 02:49 PM
The mercenaries looked up from his tea, the swirling patterns bringing back memorys of the begining, of Edinburgh, a coffee-shop and all the change that had happened since. The change might not be visible today, but it would always have happened.
He blinked in the sun of a new day, and looked at the young messiah.
"Do you intend to come back? We can always use another hand..."
The temptation rushed over him; the chance to do what he had always done, but this time for a good cause. But he couldn't help but see the face of his friend, the angel, slowly ceasing to be. Thats something else that could never be change; Gabriel may have returned but his leaving was none-the-less significant.
"I don't think heaven would suit me; I've done far too much evil to feel at ease in a place so good. I guess... that this is a rebirth, a new life. One where my sins will not hang over me. I must make ammends, find redemption, find peace."
"Where are you going to go? How are you going to do it?"
Konstantine Creed; mercanary, assassin and murderer, stood up and moved to the door, leaving the question unanswered. He said two words, and left. The words rebounded through the room, and through the minds of the listeners, conjuring strange images and connotations, none coherently but in the head of the messiah.
Posted 13 June 2004 - 05:51 PM
God paced up and down nervously, wringing his hands and rushing to the window everytime he heard a noise outside. Surely they should be back by now he thought? Then he heard the door click. He rushed out into the hall and saw the handle turn and Jesus walk in. The Holy Ghost rushed past Jesus' legs and lept up at God and licked his face. God rubbed his flanks and kissed him on the point of his sheet. Then he let the Holy Ghost fall to the floor whilst he went over and put his arms around Jesus. He kissed his son on the cheek.
"Aww, Dad!" said Jesus wiping his face with the back of his hand.
"Sorry, Son but for awhile back there I thought I'd never see you again,"
"It's good to be back Dad. Did I miss anything?"
"No, not really. I'm going to need to build a new chair though,"
"Oooh! I can help. I know a bit about carpentary."
God smiled and ruffled Jesus' hair
"That's my boy! Oh, your new Super-Prophets magazine arrived."
"Really? Well that's just fab. It's got a JB Pencil Holder!"
"JB Pencil Holder?" asked God quizically.
"Yeah, it's a pencil holder in the shape of John the Baptists head! The tongue acts as a rubber too!"
"Lovely son," said God beaming "just lovely."
Jesus smiled back at his father.
"So, how about you Dad? Are you okay?"
"I'm fine son. Once you finished off... him... I felt as right as rain."
"Well that's just great Dad."
"Thanks son. Now, do you want to wash up before dinner? I should imagine your hands are quite dirty,"
Jesus rushed upstairs. God bent down and stroked the Holy Ghost. He sighed contentedly looking around the room.
"I wouldn't give this up for the whole world," he said to himself before going to make a cup of tea.