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The Champion's Domain[]

-The Champion’s Domain-

Author's note: This is my entry for Cornconic's Random Title writing contest. The category I chose was ‘Gods’.

The sound of a skylark alerted her to her surroundings. As she looked around her, her eyes slowly adjusted to the dim light filtering into the ornate room she was in. Dust specks swirled around her. Why was she here? She did not know. She focused hard, probed her mind looking for any answers to her identity or situation.

And the answers came. A dull ache on her side revealed a stab wound, and one memory revealed another. She repeated all that she remembered, embedding it in her mind, lest she forget it again. “I am Lydia. I am the goddess of mercy and compassion. There was a war among the gods. The Usurper has slain all of them. The Usurper had claimed my life. Where am I, and why am I not dead?”

Now that she felt confident in her identity, she turned her attention back to her surroundings. She was in a massive hall. Glass domes with detailed artworks decorated the roof. She could not make out what the designs were, as the hall itself was a towering structure that made her feel small. “Like a beetle in a castle” she mused to herself. There were pillars holding the gigantic archways up. They too had the same ornate carvings on them. Her heart gave a jolt when she realized that the carvings were glyphs, in a long-forgotten system. Curious, she tried to move towards them.

The pillars were of marble, embellished with gold and precious gems, seemed to give off an ethereal glow. The soft yellows of the gold intermixing with the stark white of the marble itself, it was a thing of beauty. This nearly distracted her from realizing how she was walking; it was as if her essence was ahead of her physical body. As if the concept of her was offset from her physical form. She did not feel any major changes, and thus she reached the pillars themselves. Leaning forward to see the glyphs of gold better, she read the inscriptions. And they revealed a whole lot.

They stated that this place, where she was, was called ‘The Champion’s Domain.’ It was built by the Godmakers, beings beyond time who gave the gods their powers. It was a safeguard against the extinction of the gods. The gods were extremely powerful, sure, but they were still bound by Death. If all the gods were in fact defeated, the Godmakers would bring back one god to repair the damage. This pillar foretold the Usurper’s conquest. Inscribed at the end was a warning; she was only allowed to view this pillar. The other pillars had future events they did not have the right to know.

She heard a window swing open behind her. Her mind still reeling from what she read, she limped towards the window. She saw the dark ominous clouds looming over the Hall itself. She could not get her mind to focus enough. If the chosen god was supposed to defeat the Usurper, why would the Godmaker choose to revive the goddess of mercy? The goddess of compassion? “I am not a warrior; how am I supposed to carry on the legacy of the Pantheon?” She thought out loud.

Did the Godmakers hear her? She did not know. She needed more convincing. She just could not get the courage necessary to kill the Usurper; that was surely beyond her. The door to her right creaked open as if in response.

She stepped outside the Hall. She could see her world below her. Memories of her past came back to her, clear as crystal. Chaos. Trying to hold the lance properly. Watching the skies rumble from the fury of the gods as the puny humans cowered in caves, trying not to die. The world itself suffered. The forces of nature were themselves at war...

Snapping back to reality, she glided down slowly, her eyes closed. When she landed, and opened her eyes, it took all she had just not to break down mentally at the sight of her beloved world. She took a deep breath, trying to keep the sobs in her throat. The world lay in tatters, creatures lying in piles, putrid, unidentifiable, rotting. It was unbearable to her. She steeled herself and pressed onward. Towards where she had no idea; maybe she was to roam the world by herself and hope she kills or gets killed by the Usurper.

But the destruction was too much for her to bear. On and on she walked, through burning forests, through scorching deserts, through sandy beds she was sure used to be oceans, all devoid of any life. She had a destination in mind: The spiral tower on the horizon, which was coming nearer each day. Soon, she reached the Dark City. She remembered her last time here vaguely; everything was on fire, she was looking for people to save, and the Usurper stabbed her through the side. The taste of blood. The ground had rushed to meet her face. And then she had woken up at The Champion’s Domain.

A sound of crying, a scream for help rang out through the City. A human cry, she knew. She looked around for the origin and saw a little boy running out through the mist. His dress was in tatters, his wounds festered, and maggot infested. He fell a few feet away from her. As she rushed to help him, a red serrated sword broke through his back, burning him alive. She stopped in her tracks. In front of her was the Usurper, in all his glory. Taller than anyone she knew, with flaming red hair and a lean stature. In times before the war, when she knew him by his actual name, she was charmed by him and loved his attention. But now, looking at the man in front of her, his arms opened in mock admiration, she felt only one emotion. Cold, unadulterated fury.

Something snapped in her. Her fury at him, for killing that innocent boy, for breaking her trust, for destroying her beloved world, overcame her confused feelings for him. A gold and white spear appeared in her hand, gleaming a dazzling yellow. A gift from the Godmakers, she understood.

She charged towards him, spear outstretched. He parried with his sword. Sparks flew from their weapons as they clashed. It was, at its depth, a dance. A deadly dance of vengeance. She thrust her spear at his chest. He grabbed the spear with his hands and spun her around, and she landed a kick to his face. Sweat gleaming on their bodies, they stood glaring at each other. Then they charged again. Slowly, surely, the Usurper was tiring. She disarmed him with a flick of her spear. The sword flew up in the air, and she caught it. With expert strokes she severed his limbs.

He lay there panting, his eyes widened in fear. It was then she finally understood why the Godmakers had chosen her. A lightning god without lightning was indeed nothing. But the Goddess of Mercy without her mercy was not just a threat; she was unstoppable.

And as the Goddess of Mercy and Compassion walked towards him, blood dripping from her weapons, all feelings of pity were drained away from her face. A scream, loud and deep, was heard across the skies, echoing from who knew where. His death would be slow.

No compassion was left.

No mercy was shown.

Written by Sadguybluu
Content is available under CC BY-SA

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