Ash wakes up and turns to look at her demigod protector who is sitting on the floor in the corner of the room his back against one wall as his left shoulder leans against the other. His right hand on his ax and his head drooped down with his chin touching the base of his collar bone. She smiles faintly knowing as long as he is around no one could harm her if they desired. She wondered if he loved her or if he just saw it as his duty. Ash began to think about all that has happened since they came to this down. The loss of Rebecca and the fact her sister stumbled upon her. She wondered what surprises laid in hiding for this day.
Snowy let out a loud snort and woke herself up. She rolls onto her side as well flopping her arm over Ash. Ash startled as she was not use to sharing a bed as Argos found that concept a bit unconventional. Snowy snuggles up to Ash giving her a bit of a squeeze. Ash waits a awkward moment before forcibly sitting up. Snowy grunts and thrashes her legs for a second before sitting up too.
Ash whispers,” What was that all about..”
Snowy in normal volume,” What do you mean it was a good morning hug for the worlds best sister. Expect more of them, we have a lot of ground to make up for.” With a yawn she moves slides down picking up her sandal and tosses it at Argos.
It bounces off his right shoulder startling him, in turn this causes him to lift the ax and slam it through the closed door and frame. He jumps to an alert position as Ash pushes Snowy, who can not help but laugh at Argos’s reaction. Snowy falls off the bed do to the push given by Ash landing on the ground hard. This only pauses her cheer for a moment before shrugging it off and continuing to watch her created amusement.
” Whats happening?” Argos looks around for a threat half asleep though soon he sees Ash and Snowy. Seeing Snowy’s sandal on the ground, he correctly determines that there was no threat and then grumbles about the damage he has done, as the top of the door swings open having been freed from the latch. Argos removes his ax and begins trying to estimate how much this will cost. “Snowy, your lack maturity is noted….” Argos grumbles.
Ash can not help but giggle a little as well at Argos choice of words. Grendel pops his head appears in the half open door. As Argos eyes narrow in on Ash’s slip up he says nothing as Grendel chimes in. ” Well, if this is how you welcome the morning, do I dare ask how you send off the night? ” Grendel continues to walk pass Argos still dressed, growls slightly then leaves the room. Ash and Snowy carefully change as to not be seen by any wondering eyes that pass by the broken door. Snowy then grabs Ash by the arm and leads her to Kross’s room. They Snowy begins pounding away on the door trying to encourage Ash to do the same. Ash is about to begin, Snowy stops Ash raises her hands and the door opens. A hung over Kross gives Ash a death stare causing her to stammer for a moment. Tension is broken by Snowy giving Kross a hug.
“I erm am so-” Ash begins but Snowy cuts her off.
“about time you woke up sleepy head, did you have fun with your new friends?” Snowy asks super cheery. Kross wraps one arm around Snowy and returns her hug so she will release him. He only grumbles at her cheer as he holds up one finger. He closes the door, Snowy keeps her smile shinning as she looks over to Ash who still feels she may get in trouble. Snowy shakes her a bit to bring her out that funk, then they hear Kross Shouting from the other side of the door.
“You have to be kidding your a grown ass man how the hell did you piss yourself in your sleep. ” They then hear Chuck respond.
“First you drink more than any human should, second you drift off to a dream that is far better than reality…then you have to pee and well there is this lovely tree in dream land…and well…” Chucks voice is clearly half asleep as Kross having gathered his belongings storms out of the room. Snowy cheers and takes off after Kross Ash brings up the rear still not 100 percent sure what to make of all of this.
“Seems you have made everyone angry this morning.” Ash says to Snowy who tilts her head in confusion.
“Mad? Never. I only woke them up to make sure they saw how wonderful the day is. Besides I am hungry only way to get fed half the time is to drag the grumpy old people out of bed. ” Snowy says dramatically flipping her hair.
They arrive down stairs to see, Argos and Grendel eating some sort of flat bread covered in egg. Snowy begs for some as well and Kross brings out his coin purse handing both Snowy and Ash a gold coin for breakfast, Snowy grabs Ash by the hand and drags her off to the counter to order winking to her as if to say “see it works every time.”
Kross pulls up a chair next to Argos he orders his break fast and some other rations for travel.
“Sorry boy scout don’t think I can feed you on a regular bases, And dwarf that monk pissed himself… you could have given me a warning or something” Kross says agitated at the whole ordeal they agreed to embark on. That could very well turnout to be a goose chase.
Grendel finishes his bite then responds,”World is full of surprises…”
Argos also replies,” I will buy my own way, I may not look like much but I can afford supplies. ”
Chuck stumbles down the stairs causing him to trip and tumble the rest of the way down. He slowly sits up as no one rushes over to his aid Snowy only giggles as Ash waits for a cue from Argos for the proper reaction. Argos looks back for a moment then returns to eating Ash follows in kind.
Chuck joins them plopping down next to Grendel and the girls, he is wearing new, aged pants having cleaned himself up from the nights mistakes. They finish up and stock up on what supplies they can here, then split up and tackle gathering items for the road. Argos finds an ox as Kross and Snowy find a wagon. Grendel and Chuck load up on ale, wine, and liqueur as well as water. Ash however has the hardest task of finding a map of the realms and a compass, after asking more people than she felt comfortable with she gains her requirements and returns to the tavern where the others had already gathered.
“Well still no sign of Cecil I take it. Might have to head up to that wooded area and see if we can find him. ” Kross says still in disbelief that they are doing this. Given no direction or idea of where to go he just shakes his head in disgust before helping tie the ox to the wagon.
Argos looks down at Kross before speaking,” You sure are an angry little fella you should look more to the joys of life when you can, but I guess that is why you keep Snowy around huh. Besides Cecil said he was limited in what he get invested into right now, anyway if these immortals exist I am sure they are causing some sort of scene where ever they are. ”
Oh yes,” Grendel states “perhaps we should check the kingdoms of the greatest houses, surely word has traveled of strange happenings.”
Clouds begin to gather in the sky making it dark and the winds begin to pick up Snowy and Ash seek shelter between baskets of supplies using Snowy’s grey robe as cover they smile at their make shift shelter. Argos raises his hand to block the wind from his eyes and Kross ties the final knot on the ox, who was starting to get startled.
The sky erupts in thunder and lightening, as the earth itself shakes from the violence above. Argos and Kross look up as Grendel and Chuck load up their contributions to the journey ahead. The sky is full of clouds as lightening flashes in various colors. This raises the hair on Kross’s neck as he has never witnessed anything like it before.
The sky flashes various colors as rain begins to fall. Not any type of rain the world has ever seen. Blood soaks the earth and those standing below. Kross orders them to move forward towards the woods where Cecil was found. They march on Argos and Chuck saying prayers as the Grendel tries to distract the girls who have become frightened by the whole ordeal.
The feet of Argos and Kross splash through bloody mud puddles as they enter the wooden area. Kross stops the cart as he hears the clang of metal. The golden seraph from before has a rapier drawn and is currently covered in various cuts. Pieces of its flesh are scattered across the area. They all watch as Cecil stands still only glaring at the seraph as chucks of her flesh fly off.
Seraph,” WHAT THE FUCK, HOW, SHIT…” She screams with an enchanting tone cause Argos to charge forward to try and stop it ask Kross Chases after him in hopes he can stop the Demi-god from getting involved in whatever this is. As Argos approaches the battle the wings of the seraph fly past him as Kross sees Argos become still. Kross closes in and looks at Argos who is not even blinking a living statue, Kross can not even tell if he is breathing. Kross shouts at Grendel and Chuck to help him drag the fool back. They run and assist not sure what is currently happening.
The seraphs falls to her knees as Cecil remains still. He looks down at her as she begins to summon a portal. Chanting as she holds back her tears barely any flesh left on her as she looks at him, in pure fear. Cecil’s eyes once white are now visibly multicolored, blue, red, gold, white, black, and gray.
“Why am I not healing…what have you done….how did you?” Seraph demands after finishing her portal inches from her.
Cecil’s tone was cold and harsh as his eyes narrowed giving his response,”You tell the others the realm of mortals will be defended. If the immortals want to continue their destruction tell them what happened here and show them what happened to you. if you try and hunt me down again and you will be in far worse condition. This is the extent of the mercy immortals can expect to see should they wage war on mortals. Take that message to Gilgamesh, you tell him I sent it, you tell them all. ”
The seraph with resentment nods crawling through the portal and vanishing. The portal closes as soon as she enters. Cecil falls to one knee then vanishes as well. Moments later Argos takes a deep breath and is startled with being back by the wagon, all the evidence of the battle they witnessed is gone Snowy whimpers as Ash does her best to console her. Ash had seen few things worse than what they all just witnessed.
Kross with hand on his blade begins to walk forward to where the battle had taken place he is mindful of his steps being take it slower when he reaches where Argos had frozen.
“Well then sorry about that. Had a pest problem had to take care of, it will by us some time to get you all where you need to go. The Gods will not all parish today instead they will be forced to fall to this realm. Pay attention to the rays of light that collide with the ground. The realm may very well rest in your hands, I will catch up to you when I can.” Cecil speaks from behind Kross. Cecil’s eyes have returned to white yet his tone remains the same cold and distant as it did when he spoke to seraph.
Kross jumps forward and turns to draw his blade out of instinct from being startled. He points the end of the blade to Cecil’s throat. ” What are you…how and why did you do that?”
“The how is irrelevant but the why is to keep the skies clear of their wondering eyes for a bit, giving the Gods a chance to flee. I have other details that demand my attention, but if you truly seek answers to how, you need to head to the forbidden island. Recommend going armed as secrets tend not to be given up without a fight.” Cecil says remaining cold.
Kross shakes his head as the rain continues to fall. He sheaths his sword as the blood continues to fall he turns and looks to Argos and the others he sighs and grumbles. Having always done his best to stay out of the nonsense of Gods and the fools run of seeking glory finds himself in the middle of almost more than he can bare. He informs the others at to what Cecil said word for word. They all look at each other then wait. 6 beams of light shower down from the heavens colliding with earth causing it to shake.
Argos determines they should head east as the closet one landed in that direction. He worries for his father, but his confidence of his fathers abilities blinds him to the possibility that Ares has already fallen. The wagon carves its way through the blood soaked path as they reach cross roads they take the eastern path.