[identity profile] tezcatl-ipoca.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] estdeus_innobis
I felt her die, the girl. Beginning.

The end of worlds. Part of me knows this. But there's always been another after, and this time there won't be. And I should be glad. But the part of me that's young and saw some of the world with the Carnival and had that day with Brant and loves - too many people - I don't know. But I am tired. So tired, since that day. And this was what Management brought me back for, and what I was meant for from the beginning.

All of the parts of me, thought - the old god, the man who was Tez, and the me that's Micah - know where I belong, though. He always said that I'd betray him. I always thought I'd have a plan. Instead there's just rain, and me wondering whether, if we'd had a child, if would have been that one that'd died to begin this.

I wonder what Management will do. I can feel them in the night, as I can feel the dead goddess in the rain. None of this is very well organised. I wonder where Genny is, and Valmont.

I could make the earth shake again under my feet as I go, if I wanted. I could be the spaces beneath the earth and between the stars. I'm not. I'm just getting wet. But I know where he is. I always know.

Date: 2014-01-26 09:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
Matters have not been proceeding as smoothly as I intended.

Perhaps that was inevitable. I am trying to pull apart Creation, after all. If the centre does not hold, why would everything not fall into chaos?

Rose was cleverer than I knew. And I will not kill her again, after the vow I made not to harm Wanda. Not because I am not an oath-breaker, but because the magic that ow was bound with would mean breaking it would do my purpose harm. So I leave Wanda, and turn back to more pressing matters.

I feel Management lend their strength to the magic that is being done by the witches, threading the goddess through this town, shielding them from my sight. My old ally is very strong, and I shiver with frustration. The town is so small, and yet I cannot find them, these mortals making the rain glaze with divinity.

So I must distract Management, and I think of how to do it. Their child, the one that smells of Egypt at the dawn of man. Yes. I will slit its throat and see if Nile water runs out, or if it is full of ravens and writing desks.

I take up a knife, Brant-body clothed in hunting gear, and go out. I can feel him out here, too, in the last night.

"Have you come to say goodbye, then?"

Date: 2014-01-26 10:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
"You hardly look like a god at all, now," I say, without venom. "I wondered if at the end you might be more of the Night Wind. But you are Micah." And I was Brant, in his arms.

I lookout over the fields.

"It is going less smoothly than I wanted. And so I am going hunting for Management's child. You can come too, if you wish."

Date: 2014-01-26 10:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
"They are part of it," I say. "They were my ally, once, but not now. Having the child changed them. And so I will take their child from them." I can hear his teeth in his voice when I name them. "I know you hate them," I say. "Do you still know how to be the jaguar? Because I am going to run, now, and I do not know if Micah can keep up."

Date: 2014-01-26 11:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
I crouch down and press my nose to his.

"Azizam," I say, an old word. "Come, then. They have not put lamb's blood over the door of their house," and I laugh, and spring to my feet, then into a run that takes me past meadows and into the old crumbling part of town, the part that smells of mildew and deceit and disappointment, the part when another Tez once set a spell and this Tez was a boy who loved me quite simply. I can feel their Child like a rotten tooth, like a chalk on slate.

Date: 2014-01-26 11:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
I like to run with him. This body's heart pounds. I knew he would come. I thought it would hurt more to see him, after what happened before, but instead I am... glad.

I can feel the ancient-new thing that is Management's offspring. It pulses deep in the dark. I make myself as light as air, thin as a pane of glass. I am clear and silent and I am waiting amongst these jumbled buildings for it to come out.

It is so innocent and so corrupt. Right now it looks like a woman, plump and brown. If I tear it open do I find a black hole, or a thousand eyes, or squid arms writhing? It is time to find out.

The knife I carry was made out of a star. It is sharper than grief, and I spring with the blade pointing out, toward the child's heart.

Date: 2014-01-26 11:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] managementchild.livejournal.com
Mother has business and so I have been out walking. I went to peek at Father now he is a baby; she's so small, I could fit her head inside my mouth. But I don't, because that is not interesting. Instead I grind rocks between my teeth, pebbles and mortar, so I can taste the different tastes of this town. The earthquake loosened a roof tile and I carry it between these fingers and lick it thoughtfully, thinking of how many raindrops have rolled down this roof. One year there was snow so heavy other parts of the roof pitched, but not this tile. I can taste its terracotta pride -

The pain is sharp and a surprise. Not a nice surprise like cake or entrails spilled in sacrifice on an altar unused for centuries, but a horrid surprise, and I wail like a baby and unravel like a skein of wool and wrap myself around him tighter tighter so I can strangle him crush him make him dead.

Date: 2014-01-26 11:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
I hardly care about this body's pain, and so the wire-thin press of it into me is something I can ignore as I drive the knife deep inside it, seeking out a place that works like a heart. But - the wire tears at more than flesh. I can feel it digging into the parts of me that are no longer flint and stardust, the places that have wept, and that is a pain that makes me howl.

"Stop," I cry out in fury, and there is blood and venom and coaldust all over my hands, but the pain does not stop.

Date: 2014-01-27 12:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
He is a god of stone, and he is beautiful. The child mews at last, and I tug him away.

"You cannot finish it," I say, and kiss his flint lips in gratitude. "It must be me." Because Management will seek me out, then, not him. I want their anger for me.

It does not take so very long, after that. Places within me throb like pulled teeth, like an old wound crying with rheumatism on a wet night. The child is gone.

"Management will notice, soon," I say quietly. I can feel Nanshe in the rain that falls around us. That bitch and her eternal optimism, soaking into everything. "You should go to Genny, or to that barkeep you love, or Syl." I should be alone. I have always imagined myself alone at the end of all this. And strangely I find I care that he should die in company he cares for. Once I would have wanted him with me. But I can give him no consolation, at the end.

Date: 2014-01-27 12:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
"I do not want you with me," I say gently. He will think it is a rejection. I stroke his hair back. This, then, is the last I will see of him. "Night Wind. Itztli. Micah." I kiss his forehead. I have, I have come to realise, loved all those parts of him. He was the places that Management's child hurt. "Goodbye."

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