This week, I have more of my writing content, but this time, it has nothing to do with Bianca Barrowbone and her own story. This week, I’m focusing on another novel I’m working on: a fantasy-ish series that revolves around a new batch of gods. Of course, those gods have to rise to power somehow. This is their story, or at least how the history books tell it:
The Rise of the Gods
In the beginning, Earth was already there.
Humanity was already there.
Hell, I could go on for pages saying exactly what was on Earth, but for the sake of time let’s say everything was already there. The only thing missing: the gods. There were gods once, long ago, when technology was merely a daydream and people’s lives revolved around altars and offerings. But now, technology was their god. People worshiped WiFi. They prayed to international businesses out to take and take and take until the people that served them were left destitute. The old gods were dead, and humanity had taken the world by storm, slaughtering hard-worked crops with their toxic air, poisoning oceans they thought were theirs with violent plastic, and all the while exclaiming that it was all for the sake of progress.
Progress my ass.
Meanwhile, on Olympus, the rotting bodies of fallen deities scattered the once pristine floors, staining just about everything with drying, golden ichor. When they were finally found, when people finally discovered what was supposed to be a floating, ethereal paradise, the world spiraled into chaos. People had no idea what to do. At least… most people.
Luckily, at least for some talented individuals, an immense power vacuum opened in the wake of this carnage, a spot where the new generations of druids and wizards could claim their place and drink down the soothing, silken nectar of Ambrosia, where they could sit on thrones of bones as humanity cowered at their feet. And, as per tradition, it was the most ambitious, most cutthroat individuals who would claim these coveted positions.
Their rise to power was not an easy one. The competition left the world in tatters, magic crumbling the infrastructure of cities and waves colliding in vengeful fervor against once-invincible shores. Wars were fought viciously, more viciously than ever before, bringing the once unbreakable humans back to an almost medieval state, one where territory was king and anarchy rocked the Earth.
No one was there to answer their prayers.
In the end, there were but eight forces left, four women and four men, eight all-powerful individuals who clawed their ways from the abyss of ignorance to the mighty, divine light of Olympus. They represented the basest urges of mankind, the most inevitable forces of nature, and they were there to stay.
The first to float up to Olympus, on the backs of souls rolling from the chaos behind her, was Morte, a sheer force of will that moved calmly through the world, always observant, always there. She haunted the minds of every individual on Earth, waiting for the right moment to strike and sweep them away. Thus, it was no surprise that she was the first to reach Olympus, untouched, with a column of corpses rising from the ground behind her. She was power. She was inevitable. She was Death.
The second to claw his way up to Olympus, burning fields rolling behind him as waves slashed armies to smithereens, was Lysander. Grass grew under his very footsteps, warm light glimmering on his face as he, war-ravaged and grim, marched to the top of the mountain, growling in a supernatural rage and grinning ear to ear at the vengeance he wrought against ungrateful humans. He was the snap of flames against wood. He was every shade of green on the spectrum. He was Nature.
The third one, a being borne of sheer, unadulterated rage, marching to the beat of the drums of war, went by the name Belladonna. A crimson carpet cracked under her glistening, armored feet, marking her a star among the common fools she so enraged. Anarchy roiled around her, armies ripping apart their own, knives drawn, guns blazing. The pulse of gunfire radiated in her skin, beating the sky into an unforgiving scarlet blur. She was their beginning. She was their end. She was War.
The fourth would-be god to reach the pantheon, a man who looked only forward, never back, was Weros. He rose like the morning sun, shining in the light of success. Gore and blood tainted his clean-shaven skin, reminders of everything that led him to this fateful moment, everything that led him to his final victory. Blue light pulsed from his arms and eyes: toxic, addictive success pulsing from him more and more as digital apparitions foamed from him, flooding battlefields with torment. He had everything he could ever want, but it would never be enough. It would never be enough. He was greed. He was technology. He was Innovation.
The fifth of them, Anadne, floated above her comrades, mad light shining in her eyes. Behind her, madness boiled and tactics clashed, her path littered with papers splattered with consequence and minds torn apart. An insatiable thirst annihilated the throats of those who met her glare. She infiltrated the minds of her followers, inspiring the never-ending hunt that would either lead them to salvation or oblivion. After all, it worked so well for her. She was untouched by bloodshed, all murder landing only feet away from her shimmering indigo cloak. She was madness. She was order. She was Knowledge.
The sixth to swagger to the peak was Palin, energy pulsing around him as bright and burning as the stars. His impeccable designer suit was dotted with crimson spots, the price for his success. Any who neared him withered under his all-powerful, entitled gaze. Those that spoke to him felt bolstered under his strength, willing to do anything to prove themselves to his superior judgement. He was victory. He was power. He was Pride.
The seventh, lifted to newfound divinity by love-ravaged strangers, was a woman beyond any other, a woman named Amara. The bodies littered behind her stared on with dull, dream-drawn faces, brows sweet and lips pursed in eternal infatuation. She drew people to madness, leaving lovers begging for another taste of her warm summer lips. She left people torn apart by lust, by desperate need. Her summer-sweet hair brought hope and despair to all who witnessed her, and she lived for every second of it. She was hope. She was pain. She was Love.
The final of the eight humans to claw his way up to the plateau of the Gods was an enigma known only as Omir. He was an ageless boy, his scarlet hair waving to the beats of seconds. He, unlike the others, could have been there first, but he took his time, observing as young hopefuls clawed each other’s eyes out, bringing pain and destruction to everything they touched. He, however, was different. Whatever corpses were left behind him were long dead, now withered to dust under his clockwork wings. He, like Death, was an immutable force, one that could never be stopped, never slowed, never quickened, at least not without a price. He was invincible. He was swift. He was Time.
Thus, the eight deities rose to their spots in the pantheon and drank the nectar they fought so hard for. They sat coolly on their thrones, looking down at the shreds of humanity at its worst, and then, they shocked everyone.
Rather than wreaking more havoc, rather than finishing the job and dealing humanity the killing blow, they began rebuilding. After all, what’s the point of being a god if you have nothing to rule. They put together the pieces of a war-ravaged world, bit by bit, person by person, working hand in hand to fix the humans’ mess. Why? No one knows. All they know is that after society was “fixed,” the gods vanished, preferring to gaze from afar than continue meddling with mortal affairs.
Still, the gods were not perfect. After all, they had once been human, and they had made a great error. Their destruction had left a crack in the universe, a crack that could unleash apocalyptic terror if only it opened just a tad bit more. However, one day a hero would rise from the depths of the Earth and defeat the great evil the gods had let loose. The only question was: When?