Children of the Gods [Game/Started]

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"Are you okay!?"

Nicole nodded and stood up "Yeah, just had to catch my breath," she said, when a pair of heavy thuds resounded off the side of the van. She swiveled and looked outside, she couldn't see Remus and Able, and a god of some sort stood triumphantly holding a mace and lightning. She couldn't be sure what had happened to the two of them but it couldn't be good.

She drew on her reserves of strength, and focused, if the gods lightning was anything like what she had taken from the storm then she could not allow it to hit the others. Steven and Aria charged recklessly at the god and even Andrew forced himself to act. Nicole concentrated on the god, focusing her new power on his attacks, willing them to become ineffective.

And she was free! Aria had pulled her from the pile of smoke monsters. A second later they were away; Aria's doing no doubt. "You ok?" she asked. Vera put on a brave face and replied "yes"; trying to ignore the burns.

A moment later, they were surrounded. Aria retreated further - Vera in tow - then started blasting with a fury Vera'd not seen before.

Knowing her blade was next to useless against the monsters, Vera took wind form; surrounding Aria and all the others to try and deflect the many incoming blows. The others would need to strike the monsters down.

Prometheus looked at Andrew, standing in the doorway of the Van. He was scared, shaking, though with great strength of mind held his ground in the doorway. Prometheus couldn't see Vera or Aria; and just caught a glimpse of Steven running, firing wildly.

"Out in the mist is a God! Come with me, I'll keep them off you. You need to come out here."

Hoisting the shield up, he spotted a charging Djinn, alone and weakened from Aria's bolts. Drawing it near, the Titan wildly smashed the shield into it's side as it lunged, breaking away bits of stone, watching it return to the mist. Near unkillable, they could at least be somewhat disarmed. He stood there, breathing heavily, waiting for Andrew.

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Steven ran towards the God, the pelted rock falling short. The Djinn were wary to face him; having witnessed his dismemberment of the other; those that did charge were buffeted by Vera; blown back away, lacking enough physical matter to push past the wind.

Steven arrived as soon as Aria warped. She poured the last of her strength into the shot, the energy from which parted the mist around them. A powerful blast, though the God simply raised his lightning.

Nicole sensed a slight pull; the weight of the lightning was heavy, heavier still with so many distractions; Steven's gun, Aria's bolt, keeping the mist, the rain...

She pulled down on the lightning, the Gods hand trembling, only half-blocking the energy. It burnt through his robes and into his chest, sizzling and scorching, causing the skin to peel and flake away.

Clutching his chest, the God staggered, the rain easing, the fog becoming thinner. Aria was spent, and her breath was ragged; she tasted blood and bile. Seeing Steven approach and Aria falter, he flung his mace at the girl, no energy left to warp, catching her under the chin and knocking her out.

The God, wheezing, clutching his chest, attempted to straighten up, leering menacingly at Steven.

"Do you want to know...what happened to the last men who fought me?"

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Vera felt a change in the weather; the wind and fog was less strong, the rain less heavy, and her whirling began to push both the fog and the rain away. The Djinn felt her and began pushing back, unable to break past her but still pushing, drawing out her strength as they tried to close the whirling circle.

What was that noise?

Admist the lightning, the chaos, and the shouts of Prometheus, there was a sudden *thud*. But what was it? Judging by Prometheus' rallying cry, Etna assumed that the noise wasn't particular a good thing. Maybe she had been a bit too hasty in her approach to the problem of Dionysus? Sure, one sure hit and the god would be died. However, was that really possible? Gaia, Loki, Hades, Mr. Persian Devil... It had taken the teamwork of several demigods to take down their adversities. Dionysus, empowered by that strange suicide cult, would surely be a different story.

The chaos had just shown them how unprepared they actually were.

It was ironic, inside she called for action - to go directly after Dionysus - while outside she just stood there passively. The reason wasn't fear. But how long would Etna keep to her pacifist ways? The dagger glinted as another lightning bolted cracked across the sky. Should she run outside and stab whatever is rocking the RV? Should she take the initiative? Or should she hide under a blanket like a certain doctor-in-training? Well, she didn't take any of those options. Magical or divine or whatever, a dagger was still a dagger. Etna doubted that little thing would do much good.

Still, she helped in what way she could, for the umpteenth time.

Aria was out before she hit the ground, which really just meant she couldn't feel her now broken jaw as she lay on the ground and got rained on.

"Out in the mist is a God! Come with me, I'll keep them off you. You need to come out here."

So if I get rid of him, does the weather get better?

Andrew nodded, though somewhat hesitantly, before forcing himself to walk out. He wanted to go back in, he wanted nothing less than to be safe and sound inside the van. As safe as he could be. He looked towards the mist, but he avoided looking far up, just standing under the open sky made him feel dread.

That doesn't matter. It doesn't--

More lightning. He froze for a very short while, before he collected himself again. Andrew was very well aware of that Prometheus had spotted that he was afraid. He didn't like showing weakness like this. As he started walking towards the god hidden in the mist, he spoke.

"I've got astraphobia," Andrew said, trying to hold onto a little of his dignity. Phobias were different from just being a coward. Probably. Hopefully. "An abnormal fear of lightning and thunder."

He didn't speak more than that, not wanting to distract Prometheus when the creatures the others had been fighting attacked, and instead kept heading towards that one place. The fog had started to become thinner, and he could now spot the guy, who seemed to be fairly hurt from before.

Without hesitation, Andrew lifted his bow again, aiming at the god's chest area. He fired two arrows in swift succession, one hitting the lower part of the abdomen, the other, which he taken an extra few seconds to change his aim, hit the god's neck. Was that enough? Andrew put his bow down, perhaps foolishly, to survey the results.

Steven barely kept his footing with the strong winds. The blast made his ears ring.

"Do you want to know...what happened to the last men who fought me?"

Steven looked at the God. Whatever just happened, it was a lot weaker. Steven felt there was one bullet left in the chamber. While the bullets had not effected the god before (Steven didn't consider he might of just missed in his fury), there was now a wound to exploit.

Steven breathed in, and out, took the gun in both hands, aimed, and fired at the burnt skin in the God's chest.

Steven fired into the Gods chest, punching hole after hole into the God. Spitting ichor, the God cried out in pain, though still standing. His hands wrenched at his chest, pulling the bullets out one by one. The glowing beam of energy was lying on the ground; hot, so hot that Steven could feel it radiating electric heat.

He would have spoken, but Andrew's arrows sunk into him, stomach and neck. No cry of pain, just a deliberate motion; his hands pulling them out and dropping them; arrows blackened from his insides. He was crippled; barely able to move, in increasing amounts of pain; yet still alive.

Raising his head, he called out.

"Is this it, Zeus?! This is who you send to stop me? Your throne is mine!"

Etna tapped into his anger; it was wild and pent-up. Festering for a very, long time. Tapping into it, she enraged him; focusing his attention on his anger rather than present matters. However, this also drew his attention away from his pain, his body completely straightening out as he cried out into the sky. The thunder and lightning flared again, fueled by rage; striking erratically.

"Zeus! Face me yourself coward! No more games!"

Ichor poured out of his wounds; sizzling as drops fell onto his forgotten staff.

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Prometheus watched as Andrew fired, though keeping a keen eye out for Djinn. When the god pulled them out, he cursed.

"Fuck."

Looking around furtively, he wasn't sure what to do. The Djinn were kept at bay by Vera, though edging ever closer. If they got to the van, they would all be killed. But Aria was out, Steven alone amidst the lightning. Grabbing Andrew by the wrist, he started running.

"Time to face your fear, Andrew."

Lightning struck nearby, flashing, thunder roaring. Prometheus tightened his grip.

"You need to get Aria back in the van. I'll help Steven."

The God was busy challenging Zeus, though still aware of the pair approaching. Releasing Andrew to deal with Aria, the Titan sized up the God, and the wicked looking mace. Standing next to Steven, he spied the lightning staff.

"Think you can hold that without frying?"

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A Djinn broke through Vera's barrier, slinking low to the ground, and crept into the van through the open door, left open from Andrew's exit.

"Fuck."

That was very much the word for the situation. The god was bleeding a lot, or perhaps leaking fit better, considering the odd color. He was obviously very hurt, yet he seemed to ignore that pain, and get more agitated. He had pulled the arrows out, they seemed unusable now as they had turned black. And then... the lightning and thunder started again, the bolts struck at unpredictable times and locations, swiftly.

Andrew froze, his arrows hadn't helped much, and now he was outside the van. Prometheus grabbed his wrist, and before he could react, the Titan started running towards the god, dragging him along. As Prometheus was far stronger, Andrew had no choice but to follow at the same pace, his attempts to resist seemingly futile. Well, either that, or have his arm ripped off, although that kind of seemed more preferable at the moment.

"Time to face your fear, Andrew."

No, not there---

He had started shaking again, and was clutching the bow in his other hand. Why were they headed towards the god? Because there was other people there? But this wasn't--- he didn't--- Lighting struck close this time, and he instinctively tried to get out of Prometheus' hand, and run towards the van. That was safer, he didn't care about anyone else anyways, what use was it that they all died? Prometheus responded by gripping his wrist tighter. Was he planning on having Andrew get killed?

Let go you bastard!

"You need to get Aria back in the van. I'll help Steven."

The van. He was going to go back to the van. That was good. A relief. However, he had to get Aria first. Part of him really intended to go back the very moment Prometheus would let go of him. Even if he was a doctor, this wasn't a doctor's job, and he was too scared for his pride and memories to calm him down this quickly. After all, he was selfish and antisocial at core, why would he save someone else at the cost of his own life?

However, then he saw Aria, lying passed out, lightning flashing around her. If he didn't pick her up, she would probably get hit, and killed. Andrew stopped thinking. The moment Prometheus let go of him, he ran over to her, and picked her up quickly, supporting her head in case of head injuries, but not taking the time to examine her. There was lightning all around them, after all, and he wasn't going to stay longer than he had to, not at all. Andrew then sprinted towards the van, wanting nothing more than to find shelter within it.

Nicole steadied herself from the exertion, she could collapse when the battle was over, not before. Hopefully such an end would come soon, the god looked badly wounded and his minions were mostly scattered, but they were not in good shape either. Aria was unconscious, Remus and Able hadn't appeared again, Andrew was terrified, and she felt like she was running on fumes.

A burning light entered the van as one of the monsters crept through the door, behind her Etna seemed focused on the fight outside, I can't let it hurt her. Nicole grabbed the sword and held it outstretched towards the monster. Her wings shimmered into vision behind her, looking somewhat tattered from the strain she was under.

"Your god is nearly beaten, and I have already turned his power against your kind once," she said, trying to hide her exhaustion and appear menacing "If you are wise you will run before we can give you our full attention."

There was just so... much anger.

It was a vortex, a black hole, hot and chaotic, like the insides of a volcano, like the core of the Earth, like the centre of the Sun and every other star in the galaxy. Wild like a storm, the fury of nature itself. Etna had tapped into the anger of a god, but as she tugged at anger, part of it seeped into Etna's mind, which only cause her to tug harder. In short, it was a vicious cycle of pulling the god's anger up and in return, receiving some of that anger, and using that rage to pull even harder. She was pulling and pulling, tugging and tugging, as if it was the only thing that could be done to sort out the situation. Then... Then something just crashed. She turned around and saw one of those creatures.

She needed to break free from the rage.

The only way was to let it out all. Her frustration, her anger, her rage. The all-consuming rage of that enemy god had become hers. It was mixed in with her own. Andrew, her own imposed need for haste, this situation... All only served to fuel the fire. She grasped the dagger with a surer grip and ignored Nicole's words to the Djinn. Like it would listen anyway. Besides, she was tired of always being the one who always stood back from the combat. Etna couldn't ignore it now. This was a war against gods, a war that Dionysus had started as soon as the ritual-suicides had began. And here she was, thinking it was alright - no - that it was better to take the pacifist route, even they were the ones being attacked, they were the ones in danger... 'Well screw that.'

Etna leapt at the Djinn, past Nicole, and slashed with the dagger.

"If you are wise you will run before we can give you our full attention."

The Djinn crackled audibly, drawing itself up from the floor, flooding a section of the van with smoke and heat. The fire in it's eyes narrowed, looking over Nicole; it's gaping mouth twisting into a malevolent grin. The flames cast her wings shadows onto the dashboard.

Though it's face exhumed confidence, the creature was hesitant to move, fearing the wicked blade the girl handled. Trying to draw her near, it taunted.

"Careful now little girl; that swords awfully sharp. Don't want to end up like your friends -"

Etna leapt past Nicole, seething with rage, and slashed the dagger across the creatures chest. The stone covering it's core began flaking and crumbling away; veins of green fire splitting and shredding it, radiating from the cut.

Squealing and backing itself into the van, it poured itself onto the wound, trying to smother the wound. Tendrils of flame and smoke reached out to Etna and Nicole, whipping and scorching, keeping them at bay as it tried to repair itself.

"Is this it, Zeus?! This is who you send to stop me? Your throne is mine!"

The God obviously was boasting, he must of been in some serious pain...

"Think you can hold that without frying?"

Steven thought train was broken by Prometheus. He turned towards the staff, thought about it, and shook his head. While he expected he would avoid the burn, static shocks still effected him, and bet it would still do massive nerve damage or muscle twitching. However...

Steven remembered the shotgun he had given Remus, and didn't remember it being fired during this fight. He quickly ran back to the body, and found it still there.

It was still loaded with buckshot. Steven turned around, raised the weapon, and fired both rounds into the God's chest.

The force of the shots struck the God down, now pinned flat on his back, wheezing, bleeding. The storm began to fade; the fog and clouds dissipating. It was late afternoon; the sun setting, the moon just rising; the pink-tinged sky was beginning to reveal only the brightest stars.

Prometheus walked over to the God and placed the rim of his shield on his neck. Ichor was pouring out of the gods chest and mouth; he spluttered and coughed, speaking low.

"You can't kill me, you know. Not with those weapons. Not for now..."

The Titan stared the God in the eyes, before speaking to Steven.

"Good shot. What do you want to do with him? Teshub, if I'm not mistaken..."

The God squirmed, both his mace and staff out of reach. What energy he had left was keeping him alive; the storm above vanishing completely.

Vera was exhausted. The smoke monsters were beyond her ability to stop and now she couldn't even hold them at bay. It's be nearly an hour before she could transform again and by then they'd all be either dead or victorious. Vera could scream at her stupidity; why had she allowed the monsters to get the better of her early on. All she could do was hope the others would be able to hold their own.

That was when she saw them. Able and Remus. At first, she thought they'd been knocked unconscious, but when she noted they weren't breathing she became more worried. It wasn't long before she understood. Why Aria had gone crazy, why the entire fight was going against them... everything. They'd already lost two of their number.

Now she was pissed. Able had been kind. He was interesting. And Remus... hell, he'd been on her side when her father showed up. They were just getting to know each other! It wasn't fair. It was cruel and horrible. Worst of all, if she hadn't let herself get blind-sided by those smoke monsters... she didn't finish the thought. She couldn't.

Finding strength in her rage, she did the only thing she could. She reached down with her wind to Able's body, grabbing hold of the rune stones he'd been given. She didn't know what they did - no one did - but they were divinely empowered. All she could do was hope they were explosive. Gathering all the power she had left, she spin them around in a miniature Tornado and launched them - one at the god and the rest at the nearest of the smoke-monsters with all the force of a hurricane. As they hit, her mind let go of the real and she slipped into unconsciousness.

The rune stones burnt through the Djinn and landed in a perfect circle. Though the sky was now clear, a perfect fork of lightning struck dead center, leaving in it's wake the silhouette of a man. As his features came into detail, the Djinn that were struck with the runes began to burn horrifically, screaming as they crumbled into ash.

The man wore a plain, cream tunic and high, Nordic boots. At his side was a short sword, and in his hand a long spear. His hair was long, matted brown and red, and his beard tied in a knot. The bravest of the remaining Djinn charged him, yet with unbelievable ease and ability, he side-stepped and smote them with his spear, one by one returning them to dust.

The others creatures fled, yet the man seemed somewhat uninterested. He began walking to the corpses of Remus and Able, the runes behind him disintegrating. Kneeling down at Able's side, he placed his hand upon his head and bowed his head. Then, without moving, released a wild and primal howl, louder than any thunder, and more terrifying than any other sound; pure anguish.

Prometheus looked over at the van, the figures on the other side obscured. Keeping the pressure on Teshub's neck, he frowned deeply. The Djinn were scattered and defeated, and he prayed whatever made that sound was a friend.

Nicole battered the flames away with her wings and charged at the monster, swinging the sword with every bit of strength she could muster. She didn't know if she would truly be able to kill it given that the lightning had only driven some away, but she had to try. She aimed for what looked to be the center of the thing, a burning core of green flame.

Outside she could hear a ferocious roar, though she could only hope that whatever it came from was on their side. Knowing our luck though that's not very likely.

"Good shot. What do you want to do with him? Teshub, if I'm not mistaken..."

Steven thought for a second, and reached down and picked up the god's own mace...

The sudden yell distracted Steven from smashing the god's face in.

Nicole's sword cut straight through the Djinn; the rocky fragments already shredded from the inside. The flames began to turn green as it writhed in death throes upon the floor; squealing and hissing like a boiling kettle. Andrew arrived at the van as it crumbled to ash, carrying Aria, whose eyes fluttered open. Dazed and confused, her jaw was broken; though more of a dull ache than shooting pains.

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Prometheus and Steven both looked over at the van. Slinging the powerless God over his shoulder, he motioned for Steven to follow.

"Come on. Bring the mace; if he tries anything, kill him."

Rounding the van, he saw the strange figure lying the bodies of Able and Remus out in the open, building a small pyre from the low-lying scrub. The two deceased were blackened and burnt; their skin peeling and bloody, though their eyes shut and at peace; courtesy of Vidarr.

Prometheus shrugged the God to the ground and placed the rim of the shield onto his neck. Their deaths were surprising to the Titan, but perhaps less traumatic than for the others; he had seen many deaths, both friends and strangers. Still, it hurt. He had failed them.

Turning to Steven, he spoke low.

"I need you to get the others; whoever this man is, he poses no threat for now. He's going to burn them here; give them a funeral. We should all be present. Also, grab a sheet."

His voice was stern and somewhat removed; Prometheus needed Steven to keep strong and anchor the group, lest they all fall into grief.

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Laying out Able and Remus' body, Vidarr silently collected small branches, twigs and brush to build a pyre. His face was stained with tears, and his knuckles bare white. He had planted Able's spear and Remus' sword on either end of the growing pyre.

Turning around, he saw Prometheus and the back of Steven. He mad no indication of acknowledgement, and returned to the growing pyre, still unlit.

Aria awoke, dazed, not sure where she was, or what happened. She went to speak but her broken jaw made it self more know, and weakly grabbed it, while still getting her barings. After a few moments she recognized the RV, Andrew, then she saw the unlit Pyre out side, with Remus and Able laying there, then every thing flooded back, her seeing them die, and her failed attempt to kill the god that slain them. She got Andrew to put her down, and tried to make her way to it but fell almost instantly due to just being to tired, instead, she pound on the RVs flooring and just cried.

When Andrew arrived in the van, he saw a djinn become dust and disappear, apparantly even the van hadn't been completely safe. Aria then demanded to be let down, for some reason, and tried to go out, but instead she started crying. "What's the problem?" Andrew asked, but he was feeling very much unsure of what had caused this reaction.

As he spoke, he heard a loud yell, as if someone was in deep sorrow. Andrew hadn't heard thunder in a while, and when he glanced out, he noticed that the sky was completely clear, the sun shining and no storm to be seen. He spent a very short while drying the sweat and all that from his face. Unlike his phobia, this didn't frighten him, just make him a bit unsettled. Besides, with the warmth of the sun there, he felt a lot better. Andrew took the chance to heal Aria now that he was feeling better, leaning down and fixing the jaw that was obviously broken by touching her, but he didn't speak. She seemed unapproachable, and he had no idea of why.

More composed, he walked towards Prometheus and Steven, only to see a Norse god, doing something with Able's and Remus' weapons. Right next to the Viking, their bodies lay, them having signs of being burnt by something. They had probably been struck by the lightning, and it was clear that they were dead.

I see.

Andrew didn't really feel anything, despite having travelled with them, apart from a slight sense of loss. He wasn't sad or angry, just noting that there were two less now. Two less, who had died without really knowing what they had sacrificed themselves to stop, and two less people who could fight on their side. Andrew approached Prometheus and Steven, glancing over at what he figured to be Able's father every now and then, making sure he wasn't interfering with what the god was doing.

When there, Andrew wasn't sure what to say at first. It was too late to pretend to be all emotional about it, if he wanted to do that, he would have had to known about it before approaching them. At the same time, he was very aware of how twisted it was to be that frightened by a phobia, only to feel like shrugging at the deaths of two people. "Is he intending to burn them?" he finally asked, making sure to only murmur it. Andrew wanted to force out any sort of emotional tone in his voice, but he failed to do so. He felt even more numb than usual, it was a cold numbness spreading from his stomach.

"We're going to have a funeral, right? Right here, right now? Can I... not be there?" He knew it was unreasonable to ask. However, he felt as if he was going to stick out too much and be disrespectful like this. "I just want to get going."

The pain in her jaw subsided but she still hurt, both from her own actions, and the death of her 'friends', though she couldn't tell what hurt more, the losing them, or it taking till they where gone to really notice she cared about them. She forced her self back to her feet, and out of the RV, nearly falling over again, as she righted her self, she saw them, Able and Remus, standing in-front of the Pyre, looking at their soon to be cremated body's. She was surprised, but then, at the same time wasn't.

"I just want to get going." she heard Andrew say once she was closer.

"No, Remus and Able are both still here, we stay and give them a proper send off, they deserve that form us." she said, as she walked past him, and over to Prometheus, using him as a crutch of sorts, as she struggled to find something to say to not just to the ghosts of her fallen friends, but who she presumed to be Able's father.

Nicole staggered exhausted out of the van, and saw a terrible sight. Able and Remus's bodies had crumpled up against the side of the van, burned by lightning and so very clearly dead. A cry stuck in her throat and she felt her eyes watering, she could hardly believe it, they had been some of the strongest of the group, and she had considered them both friends. She felt defeated and guilty, I could have saved them with my new power I could have saved them if I had just been able to stay focused.

"We're going to have a funeral, right? Right here, right now? Can I... not be there?"

This surprised her, that Andrew of all people would be so uncomfortable with death, but then he had always been a rather private person, it shouldn't be too surprising that he wanted to be alone. She wasn't sure what to say though, she could only watch as the pyre was built.

"No, Remus and Able are both still here, we stay and give them a proper send off, they deserve that form us.

"Let him grieve his own way," she found herself muttering, she stumbled to the side of the van and sat down next to it, it was all she could do to manage not to pass out from the tide of emotions in her exhausted state.

Prometheus clenched his fists, Andrew's words sending rage over him. Closing his eyes, he breathed out forcibly. relaxing his hands and taking control. Staring Andrew straight in the eyes, he spoke slowly and forcefully, shaking his head at both Andrew and Nicole.

"No. Grieve how you like, but you will show your respect for Remus and Able. They died for you."

He lingered a moment longer, the weight of his words coming down upon the group. Turning from the group, he quickly ducked into the van and ripped a white sheet from one of the beds, speaking quietly to Etna.

"You should come outside."

Returning outside, he saw Vera unconscious. Prometheus sighed deeply; he was tired and hurt, yet she was more-so. Kneeling down beside her, he picked her up with one arm, returning to the group. Setting her at the feet of Nicole and Aria.

"Bring her round. She'll want to be awake."

Still moving, he approached the bodies of Remus and Able. Tearing the sheet, he faltered, standing at the feet of the deceased. Tears welled in his eyes but failed to drop; he simply choked up and froze. There was little left to recognize them, few people that would remember them, fewer still knew that they died for them. Pushing past his thoughts, he wrapped both bodies as Vidarr finished piling the pyre. It was tall, about 8 feet, and dry to the bone.

Vidarr picked up Able, and Prometheus Remus. Placing them both atop the fire, Vidarr's tears ran freely, though he made no sound. With both bodies atop the fire, Prometheus produced a flame in his hand; Vidarr quickly grabbed the Titan by the wrist.

"Wait. Let the others who will remember them come out, and give me a few moments with my son."

Prometheus nodded and lit a small branch, passing it to the God, and stood back from the Pyre, silent.

"No, Remus and Able are both still here, we stay and give them a proper send off, they deserve that from us."

Andrew only glanced at Aria, he wasn't going to object to what she said. They could stay, he would just be waiting in the van either way. He noticed Nicole walking over, she seemed to be in a bad condition, not because of injuries, but possibly exhaustion and sadness.

"Let him grieve his own way."

Grieve?

Had Nicole completely misunderstood? Andrew wasn't grieving, that was the problem. Right?

Yeah. It's this coldness, that's why I don't want to be there.

Andrew really felt like leaving now. The fact that everyone else were sad made it even worse.

"No. Grieve how you like, but you will show your respect for Remus and Able. They died for you."

"I'm not grieving," Andrew muttered in reply to both of them. His body language was closed, his eyes meeting Prometheus coldly and with defiance to them, but also what could be described as regret.

That's why I was intending to show my respect by not going.

What did it even matter if he was there? Able was one thing, he might not have interacted much with him, but at least the man hadn't expressed a strong dislike for him. Remus, however, had very clearly not liked him. Only...

"Hey. Drop the damned steel. And don't go threatening my friends like that."

No, even if Remus had said that, it had only been in the heat of the moment. There hadn't been anything apart from an intention behind it. Still, Andrew felt numb again. When Prometheus brought Vera over, Andrew took the chance to examine how hurt she was, but he didn't approach them, not yet. He would wait until she was awake, or until someone asked him to do it. Why? He didn't know, but she wasn't in a dire state, so it wasn't an emergency.

Aria simply sat and watched as the Pyre was built up more. Prometheus leaving to apparently fetch Vera and a sheet to wrap the departed in. As Prometheus requested, she set about trying to wake Vera, ignoring Andrews comment, she wanted to yell at him for it and ask 'what the hell was wrong with him?!' but she didn't, this wasn't the time or place for it, instead, she just woke Vera up. "Sorry to wake you, but we should all be up for this." she said once Vera was awake then made her way over to Prometheus.

"I'm sorry I'd been such a bitch on this trip, I'm sorry I took out my own hurt on those around me" Aria started finally finding the words she was looking for earlier, as she started to cry again "I'm sorry I didn't notice I cared about ether of you, or any one else here till now and I'm sorry I'll never get the chance to make it right to ether of you" she continued, just letting the tears flow "but I promise you, I will not let your deaths before nothing, it's the least I can do for you."

Vera was pulled back to reality by Aria's words. "Sorry to wake you, but we should all be up for this." For a moment, Vera didn't understand. She was thankful the fog-monster-things were gone and they weren't hurt. Then, the memories of Able and Remus lying beside the RV flooded back and she dropped to the ground in anguish.

It wasn't right. It couldn't be and never would be. This was EXACTLY the thing she'd been worried about when they'd first been drafted for this terrible terrible job. Here they were, fighting gods well beyond their ability to manage with scarcely a hope against them. It wasn't right and she was vindicated in her belief.

Yet, there was no joy in the vindication; only more pain. She hated every part of it. She hated how, deep inside, she was thankful it wasn't Nicole or Aria who died, even though the implications of the feeling were sickening to the very core of her self. Just as bad, she hated herself. For being trapped by the smoke-things so easily. If she'd just been more aware... it she'd just taken wind form earlier... Remus and Able wouldn't be dead. She could have saved them... she SHOULD have saved them, but she'd hesitated. She'd dared to think she could talk the god down.

Vera's stomach churned but blessedly she didn't lose it. She got up and made her way to the pyre. She heard Aria mention her sorrows. She didn't have anything to say. What could she say? She quickly made her way back to the RV and grabbed Able's notebook; the one he used to speak. She dug through until she found a blank page and tore it free. She couldn't say what she felt, but she could write it. She suspected Able would appreciate the way of saying goodbye.

She scribbled a few words into the paper and folded it several times; carefully so the creases would match. Finally, she returned to the pyre and threw the note in. It wasn't meant for anyone but Able to read. I guess he'd just have to share it with Remus. "Thanks for always being there for us Remus... I wish I'd had more time; i think we would have been good friends."

After that, she made her way over to Vidarr. At that moment, he wasn't one of the gods she so hated; he was just a grieving father. She felt a pang of guilt from somewhere deep inside; she wasn't sure why. "I know it's not much... but this was Able's. It's what he had to say and I think you should have it. I... I don't know if you'll believe me, but... it does get better. Not easier; never easier... but a little better." she said; recalling her grandparents.

With nothing else to do; she gave the grieving father his room and did the last thing she could and the one thing she hadn't done in years. She prayed. She prayed for Able and Remus, for Vidarr and Able's mother wherever she was. For Remus's family. And, she prayed for the rest of the little group in the RV because they perhaps needed it most.

Steven stood silently, anger still boiling under his skin. He just went in and grabbed a sheet, not talking to anyone, hand still holding the mace.

"We're going to have a funeral, right? Right here, right now? Can I... not be there?"

Steven turned slowly, not wanting to say or do anything he might regret. His grip on the mace tightened.

"I'm not grieving."

That was the very last straw for Steven. He grabbed Andrew by the collar, and put him against the van.

"YOU SELFISH ASSHOLE," Steven yelled in Andrew's face, "TWO PEOPLE WHO CAME OUT, FOUGHT AGAINST A FUCKING GOD, (Steven lifted the mace at said God) AND DIED WHILE YOU DIDN'T EVEN TAKE THE FUCKING STEERING WHEEL. THEN YOU DARE NOT GIVE THEM RESPECT IN DEATH! YOU... YOU..."

Steven let Andrew go, walking a few steps, forcing himself to stay away from Andrew. He took his frustration out on the van, leaving a large dent in the side, rather than on Andrew's face.

Before Andrew got the chance to react, Steven snapped, and put him against the van, holding onto his collar.

"YOU SELFISH ASSHOLE. TWO PEOPLE WHO CAME OUT, FOUGHT AGAINST A FUCKING GOD, AND DIED WHILE YOU DIDN'T EVEN TAKE THE FUCKING STEERING WHEEL. THEN YOU DARE NOT GIVE THEM RESPECT IN DEATH! YOU... YOU..."

Steven then let go of him, but Andrew wasn't going to take an attack on his person without saying anything, especially not when Steven had basically called him a coward. He said it so that only Steven could hear it.

"If you ever touch me again, I'm not going to let it go. I don't need to do anything else than touch you, your food or your drink for a slight second to harm you."

He stopped for a short moment, in order to think of the next thing to say. Obviously, Andrew would be bluffing at this point, so he needed to say the right things to make an impression. He was annoyed, though. More than usual, for some reason. The coldness resided, and his whole body language turned a lot more hostile.

"If you don't get it because of your tiny brain, what I'm saying is that I can give you the worst plague imaginable, one without a cure. And I won't let it kill you, not yet. Now you're almost useful. No, it will take years to surface. Then, one day, you might feel a slight headache, or your throat might feel a tiny bit itchy. It might even just start with a sneeze. Then your body will start destroying itself slowly and painfully. So. Don't touch me."

Although he meant little of it, his expression didn't change during the time he said it. He then walked back to Prometheus, and although he was closest to the Titan, he was addressing anyone who had become upset with him. Well. Apart from Steven. "This might be too late to say," he muttered. His tone was sincere, and he looked more sorry now. "But I meant no disrespect. I'm sorry. I'm very, very sorry. I just don't think I have any right to participate in a funeral when I'm not capable of grieving over anyone. I'll stay if you'll let me to stay here, but I'll leave if you'd rather have me gone." Even if it was beneath him, Andrew made himself look smaller. Humbler. As if he had accepted defeat.

Andrew wasn't sure which of the two roles he had just played fit him the most. However, he felt more inclined to give in at this moment, and he had really not meant to disrespect, it was rather opposite of that.

I shouldn't have worded it like I did before.

Still, he had been threatened, if people were allowed to physically harm him, then he was allowed to threaten them. He didn't look over at the Viking god, he had a feeling he would get attacked again if he did.

Nicole stood up and walked over the the pyre, and said her silent prayers for Able and Remus, not able to bring herself to say anything out loud. She felt like she might just collapse if she did so, as if saying such things out loud would be like admitting that they were gone, that she had failed them.

She noticed Vera heading into the van after saying a few words for Remus, she wanted to follow her friend, to see if she could talk with her. Andrew denied that he was grieving and Prometheus commanded him to stay for the funeral, all she could remember was when her grandmother had died, how numb she had felt. She suspected Andrew was going through the same thing even if he didn't want to admit it.

"YOU SELFISH ASSHOLE. TWO PEOPLE WHO CAME OUT, FOUGHT AGAINST A FUCKING GOD, AND DIED WHILE YOU DIDN'T EVEN TAKE THE FUCKING STEERING WHEEL. THEN YOU DARE NOT GIVE THEM RESPECT IN DEATH! YOU... YOU..."

Andrew muttered something that she couldn't hear then walked away, but Steven's words angered Nicole, not at Andrew but at Steven. She walked over to Steven, finding herself glaring at him.

"Getting angry won't solve anything, and neither will threatening people," she said, her voice wavering slightly but managing to stay stern "Andrew was fucking terrified by the storm, you should be glad he was able to force himself to come outside to help at all, not yelling at him about a goddamn steering wheel!"

She found her voice raising, and tried to calm herself with little success "How the hell would the steering wheel have changed anything anyways?" she said, nearly yelling now, she caught herself thinking no it wouldn't have, but I could have changed things... She steadied herself, and turned to look at where Andrew had gone "Some people just need to be alone to grieve, so let him be alone."

She turned and started to walk off, heading towards the van to go in and talk to Vera, she wanted to see if her friend was okay, and she felt like she needed to talk to someone.

Aria choose to ignore Steven and Andrews spat as well as Nicole's out burst, Andrew a side, who she was gathering really just was an asshole, figured it was just the stress of losing two of their own that sparked their own outbursts, even if Andrew had it coming, though when Vera and Nicole started praying she couldn't help but wonder who they where praying to.

Certainly not 'god', if anything this trip had more or less confirmed what she'd though for a long, but then who to? Asking that some divine entity look after two souls who died protecting the world, and did so because it was a task that needed doing and they we're qualified to do so wasn't to much to ask, but she was at a loss as to who to ask. Her mother maybe? She was kinda kicking her self for her lack of knowledge on deity's, but decided to send a silent prayer to her mother asking her help there souls find peace, even though she knew that wasn't really her job, Aria just didn't know of any one better of hand.

Vera sat in the RV trying to escape her own thoughts. She'd dug out a book from one of the packs in the back, desperately trying to numb her mind with with the words. The less she thought about... "it", the better. The book was dry in the extreme and could barely keep her mind off the death of her teammates, but it was better than the alternative; thinking about her failure.

She'd managed to make it through a handful of pages before Nicole arrived. Seeming her, Vera abandoned the book in favor of conversation. "Hi Nicole." she said, her voice barely rising over a whisper.

"You should come outside."

Etna did, not only to obey the Titan's orders, but to see what was all of the shouting was about, not to mention other things.

This was what she saw: a pyre, a pale Able and a pale Remus, and some Viking standing by the pyre, next to Prometheus. She understood. It was sickening, this was too much shouting for a funeral. She clutched her hand, the one with the dagger in it. That anger Etna had experienced hadn't subsided yet. If her grief was a sea of sadness, then the remains of that anger was the remnants of a storm. She approached the pyre, her only words were, "Sorry."

'Sorry about this mess of a funeral; sorry I hardly did anything to help; sorry...'

Etna was rooted to that spot, neither wanting or needing to move.

Vidarr breathed in deep and straightened up, looking not at the pyre but far off in the distance. Speaking in a low voice, he uttered a Norse farewell, before setting the pyre alight. The sun had set and there was little light in the sky; no sun nor moon to cast any shadows. Pale and washed-out, the group watched on as the bodies of Remus and Able were burnt, far from home.

Prometheus looked over at Andrew, who had come over to apologize. The Titan shook his head, part in weariness and disbelief.

"It's alright, Andrew. Just...make sure the others are alright."

For now, he bowed his head in respect, his eyes red and wet. The pyre burnt hot and high, the bodies obscured by flames, the wind carrying the smoke away from the group and up into the cloudless sky. Teshub dare not move; set aside from both pyre and group, injured and breathing hard.

-------------------------------------------------------------

After a few minutes of silence, Vidarr spoke to Prometheus. His voice was hard and heavily accented, but measured and controlled.

"Who did this?"

Prometheus looked over to Teshub, locking eyes with the God. Teshub saw Vidarr and began to squirm. The Norse God breathed deep and ran his hand over the hilt of his sword, tears still in his eyes. There was no rage from the God of vengeance, only sheer grief.

"If you have any questions to ask him, now is the time."

Prometheus nodded and took the hint. Turning, he saw Etna, and met her gaze. Laying hand on her shoulder, he studied her, looking for something behind those pale eyes. Spying her dagger, he cared not about his choice of words; his voice was hoarse and broken. There was no kindness in Prometheus' eyes.

"Come with me. Do you know how to torture?"

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Vidarr turned away from the pyre to the group huddled near the van. His face was wet with tears, but his eyes were fierce and stoic. He slouched and rocked in his walk; the gait of a defeated man.

"You are friends of Able? Did he fight well?"

Though the words were themselves strange and somewhat insincere, his tone was serious and hurt; ancient customs stuck with the God, and he simply wanted to know about his son, whom he had left to die.

"Hi Nicole."

Nicole didn't say anything at first, she simply walked over and sat down next to Vera, grabbing another book at random. She flipped through a few pages before she started to speak, trying to keep her voice as steady as possible. She wanted to cry but she didn't feel like she had the right to mourn them, not when she should have been able to save them.

"Are you ok V?" she asked, her voice not much louder than Vera's had been.

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