Thursday, November 4, 2010

Flash Fic Party, Day 7: Dissonant!

Oh, Diss. I don't know how she came up with the time to write one fic for my party, let alone two. Between her college courses, a full-time job, and being a full-time mom, she's busier than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest. (Is that even kosher? I guess it's not. My upbringing betrays me. Sorry, one-legged people who kick asses.)

Like I said, I don't know how, but I'm glad she did. This is a rare look into the comings and goings of Dissonant and the creepy death goddess she serves. Maybe I'm biased towards priests (okay, very definitely biased towards priests) but this is just awesome. And kinda grossly violent, in a righteous sorta way.

Which is also how I like my priests.

Author: Dissonant
Word count: 703
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The tattered hem of her cloak dragged in the dry dust of the road, kicking it up in swirls. The woman was hunched over, the old cloth draped across her head and a painfully thin frame. Her gait was slow and uneven, as if arthritis plagued her joints.

She was being followed. A slow glance back and she saw them. Two human men, drunk and with the hard edge of those who made a living by less than honest means. One squinted at her with little piggy eyes, his hand resting on the hilt of the dagger at his hip. Nervous, the woman clutched at the neck of her cloak before attempting to limp along even faster. The second, taller man let out a nasty chuckle. The heavy sound of their boots picked up, coming closer.

She could hear their harsh breath as they came near. There was no escape for her. A whispered prayer slipped her lips.

“What’s that, grandma?” said the shorter man, his tone nasal with a nasty edge. His hand reached out, curving around the cowering woman’s bone thin upper arm and jerking her back. She stumbled and bowed her head, another whisper coming from her cowl.

“Answer him!” the tall man growled, grabbing at the hood of her cloak. The threadbare fabric pulled away easily, leaving bare short, black hair. The woman raised her face and straightened her spine, standing nearly as tall as the ruffian. Her skin was sallow and deathly pale. Her cheeks were sunken and her eyes glowed with an unholy yellow light.

“I said, you prey upon the weak. The Goddess will show no mercy upon your souls.”

The Forsaken’s eyes flared and she spoke. Just a few syllables and the tall man felt as if a cold rush of air blew over his body. And then the pain came. As it crawled through him in unstoppable waves, he fell to his knees, screaming. His fingers became bloody as he tore through his own flesh; unbroken skin becoming scratches, scratches becoming gashes.

Fury replaced shock as the shorter man reached for his dagger, unsheathing it, but the priestess had already broken his grip and stepped to the side. No sound came from her throat but he could hear the scream inside his head. Layers and tones of fear and horror filled his mind and, suddenly, the terror was his. He screamed and lunged for the woman blindly but his aim was off and the dagger passed through air. Overcompensating, the man fell to the hard-packed road and the dagger fell from his hand.

The exposed bone of her knuckles gleamed like ivory as the woman picked up the blade. With deceptive strength, the frail looking woman pushed the blade smoothly through the man’s exposed neck. Blood and air pushed from his mouth in a burgundy foam as the dying man gurgled and bled. His eyes took on the far away look of one who no longer sees. Dispassionate, the priestess prayed.

“May you find your true purpose in service to the Goddess.”

The woman straightened to her full height as she turned her intense focus on the first man. His whimpers were ragged and rough as he continued to tear at his own body. His eyes full of terror at the clean manner in which she had dispatched his friend. Blood mixed with the dust of the road as it flowed from his wounds and soaked into his rough, homespun clothing.

The woman sighed. Vengeance, it was a strong emotion and she had left such things behind long ago. Still, she was not one to leave a mess behind. Another word, another prayer, and holy fire seemed to come from the sky. It scoured the man as fresh screams tore from his damaged throat until they were silenced. His still body slumped to the ground.

She bent down and dipped her fingers in a puddle of congealing blood. On each dead man’s forehead, she painted a circle with a symbol inside.

“In death you will find your rebirth.”

Standing, she pulled the tattered cloak around her once more and walked briskly away, a voice echoing in her head.

“Well done, Dissonant. I am pleased.”

3 comments:

  1. DAMN that was good. Gruesome, but that made it all the more excellent.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Diss is why we can't have nice things.

    ReplyDelete