And here's the second part of Fallen. Now, I warned you that this story is weird. I don't know that anyone appreciated how weird it might get and you need to know that the final section is, indeed, mostly in French.
Why? I wanted to see if I could convey a scene with actions. The dialogue is still there and (mostly) grammatically correct. I had a volunteer help with the dialogue, but I'm sure it's still rough at best. No illusions that my French is passable or even existent.
That said, I hope you'll enjoy this strange little journey and get something out of it. Remember, after tomorrow (when I post the final short story starter) I'll be holding one more poll to decide which story I should focus on. Be sure to vote!
Be Excellent to Each Other
High Priest Varnus
“I need more DOTs. Drew, that’s you! Damn it, Drew! Okay… the left, the left! I swear if we wipe-”
Daniel paused in mid-command. A cheese puff fell down his shirt as he stared across the basement. In her usual, glowing splendor, she stood, several feet off the ground.
“Oh, shit! Uh… my connection’s dropping!” Daniel scrambled to close the program.
“The hell? What are you-” Daniel silenced the computer’s speaker before rushing through a pile of books, papers and taco wrappers. Finally finding a blood red fez with a ram’s head embroidered on it, Daniel fell to his knees.
“Mistress Lilith, first female, I am yours to command!”
She hung in the air, a strange glow to her. Her soft features betrayed her sorrow, but Daniel dare not question her.
“Art thou my servant?” her voice echoed through the concrete basement.
“Yea, my mistress, I art thy humble servant. Givest thou me more time and I shalt produce thy followers.”
She hung silent, uncertainty plaguing her actions.
“But, my mistress… their belief wanes… uh… wanest.”
“Then they are no servants of mine. Prove thyself, herewith.”
Daniel looked up with desperation in his eyes. He pushed his glasses back in place and clasped his hands together.
“I wilt whatever thy… wouldst… have me do. But please, Mistress, thy other children, they long for thy voice.”
Daniel cowered, bowing lower, touching his head to the cheetah print rug. The fibers tickled against his exposed gut as his fez threatened to tip off his pony-tailed head.
“I have need of thee. Prove thy faith, my servant.”
“W-Whatever thou askest of me… I shalt do…eth.”
“A child is born, Servant. The child is of great importance. He is the One.”
“He must be kept safe, Servant. He must…”
Silence filled the room. Daniel dared to lift his head, peeking up at his Mistress. Her gaze bored across the room. Slowly he turned his head, half expecting a great demon. Instead, there was only his poster of Dragon Lady Zaz. He turned back to his Mistress, her gaze intently on it. She screeched, Daniel covering his ears and cowering.
Realizing he was still there, his Mistress looked down at him in disgust.
“You’re useless to me” she uttered, turning and disappearing.
“That was a really stupid idea.”
She stood atop a roof in Brooklyn, a water tank and pigeon coop decorating the flat top. Eyes piercing the night, she ignored the Painter, stepping across the night’s expanse to another roof top. The Painter followed behind her, his eyes filled with concern.
“It’s bad enough you talk to them, but were you really going to use him?” She remained silent, stepping across the concrete roof top. The wind teased a string of laundry behind her as she stepped to the edge of the building, looking down at the city below. “The guy is a complete waste of flesh. What use could he possibly have been to you?”
She gazed at the flashing lights below, mindlessly counting the oblivious people skittering hither and thither. “Are you just going to ignore me? I’m only here because I’m worried about you.”
“Your concerns are unwarranted” she replied, stepping off the edge.
The Painter sighed, rolling his head back. He followed behind, stepping off the edge. The lights of the building streaked past him as he fell. Apartment lights, billboards, perimeter lights and finally, the traffic lights. She walked down the center of the street, cars speeding by on either side. The Painter jogged to catch up to her.
“Because this attitude of yours… this… this blatant disregard for the rules… it’s going to get you in trouble!”
“Rules?” she shouted, turning around. “Whose rules? Who exactly makes rules for us?”
The Painter stared at her, eyes wide and hands fallen.
“Him? The Morning Star? Or perhaps you mean the First Born? I fear neither. Father himself could do nothing more to me.”
The Painter’s mouth opened, but no sound issued. He looked around, trying to gather his thoughts. Cars rushed by, a few passing through him as he paced. She turned with a muffled sigh, walking through the traffic.
“Wait! What were you going to use him for?” She continued on, stepping onto the sidewalk and passing through a throng of people. The Painter once again jogged to rejoin. “What was he supposed to do? Baby-sit your lover?”
She turned, fire burning in her eyes. She rushed up to him, stopping inches away.
“I don’t know” she explained in a strangely soft manner.
“I was desperate!” she shouted.
Several passersby turned, shaken by an unseen force. A few paused, halted by chills up their spines.
“He’s getting older every day. What am I supposed to do?”
The Painter reached out, placing a hand on her shoulder.
“Maybe… maybe you should just forget about him.”
Before she could retaliate, before she spit her venomous words at the Painter, a bright light blinded the two. Shielding their eyes, they looked up into the heavens. Quickly, the Painter dropped to his knee, head bowed. She, however, simply seethed. Fists clenched, she turned, walking away.
“Halt thy retreat! I speak in His name.”
Her legs froze and her body refused to move. Eyes clenched shut she screamed. “Flames and damnation!” Hesitantly she turned. The Herald’s feet touched down in front of the Painter, his golden armor shimmering. The throngs of people and cars continued on their merry, oblivious ways as the Painter shook and the Herald glowed.
“Silence thy tongue, Poet.” Her body shook with rage as her mouth sealed shut. “I deliver a warning; cease thy actions toward the mortals. Thy path hath no merit. End it now” Watching her clenched jaw, the Herald gave an almost invisible grin. “Speak, Poet.”
“Why?” she cried. “Why can’t I see him?”
“I deliver only His words, Poet, never His reasons. He hath not an obligation to explain Himself to thee.”
“What is He going to do to me? What more can He do to me?”
“Heed my words, Poet. Pursue this path at thine own risk.”
The Herald tilted back his head, stretching out his arms. His heavenly glow grew even more intense as he ascended. Her eyes narrowed as she followed his supercilious flight. Free from the confines of the law, she turned quickly marching off. The Painter looked up from his kneeling position, watching cautiously until the Herald had disappeared. By the time he stood, she was gone.
Odette le Conteur
Odette breathed deeply, enjoying the fresh Parisian air. The wire frame chair she sat in pressed a little uncomfortably at her back, but it was a small price to pay to be out in the city for once. She set her paper down on the café table and picked up the white, porcelain bowl, gently sipping her café au lait.
“Très bon. Comment j'adore cette ville” she remarked as she took in the skyline.
Something tickled her eyes and a smile crept along her face. Calmly, she reached into the bag hanging from the back of her chair, producing a notebook and pen.
“Bonjour, Collette. C'a été un moment. Avez-vous une nouvelle histoire pour moi?”
“Bonjour, Odette. Je suppose que j'ai une histoire pour vous” came her reply.
Odette smiled widely as she brought pen to paper, scribbling a few preliminary notes.
“Dites-ainsi moi, mon ami, ce qui est sur votre esprit?” she asked, turning to her pale friend.
“Il a été né” she replied, turning her gaze toward the reddening sky.
“Votre ami? Très magnifique” She shook her head silently. Odette lowered her pen.“N'est pas c'une bonne chose?” Odette questioned.
She only shook her head in response. Odette chewed on her lip for a moment, waiting for her to elaborate. Quietly she flipped back through her notebook, looking over the previous accounts her ethereal companion had shared with her. A young waiter approached them, standing behind her. With a smile he bent close to Odette.
“Vous avez besoin de n'importe quoi?”
“Non, merci” Odette replied, waving him off.
Odette let her head tilt a bit with concern. With a sigh she closed her notebook, setting it down next to her bowl. “Collete, quel est erroné ? Vous regardez très triste.”
With a deep sigh she turned to look across the table at her friend. “Ah, Odette, je ne sais pas quoi faire. Je veux le voir tellement mal, mais je suis interdit.”
“Il est … compliqué,” she explained turning her gaze up to the darkening sky. “Qu'il suffise pour dire que les puissances merveilleuses veulent à rester à partir de lui. Et les atroces.”
Odette nervously turned her gaze downward. In all the time she had known Collete, she had never once thought there might be negative repercussions. “Ce qui vous a fait pour les rendre fâchés avec vou?” she questioned.
Her sad friend rolled her eyes, anger beginning to stoke in her soul. “J'ai fait quelques choses stupides. Choses désespérées” she answered shaking her head.
Odette reached out reflexively, pausing then placing her hand on the table near her.
“Queest-ce que je peux faire pour aider ?”
“Je ne pense pas qu'il y a quelque chose que vous pouvez faire. Au moins pas d'ici.”
Odette smiled and leaned in close to her friend. “Je peux écouter.”
Odette’s words brought a smile to her face. She picked her head up, staring at her friend.
“Le ciel et l'enfer m'ont interdit de le voir. Que me pensez-vous devriez-vous faire?”
Odette laughed defiantly. She opened the notebook, flipping through the pages and presenting them to her. “Vous m'avez dit qu'ils vous ont déjà condamné, Collete. Que davantage peuvent-elles faire ? Allez à votre amour!”
“Il est un enfant. Queest-ce que je peux faire?”
“Vous pouvez être avec lui. Soyez doux. Faites attention. Mais soyez avec lui. Quand il est assez vieux, indiquez la vérité!” Odette shouted with passion.
A few of the other patrons looked over at her table, seeing the strange young writer speaking to no one quite passionately. The staff only smiled, continuing on their way without acknowledging her.
Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.