I remember heaven.
I remember the glory that reigned there. The peace of it all. I remember being so fulfilled that I thought about nothing. Wanted nothing. Needed nothing. I remember sitting in the mouth of heaven, laughing for no reason at all, other than to let some of the light out of my soul.
I remember hearing it.
I remember heaven.
And I remember heaven cracking.
Remember hearing you calling me.
I remember the moment I remembered that I used to be alive. That I used to have a life. That there were people I loved and respected.
I remembered, then, that I used to have you.
That I left you.
And I remember a voice gently calling me. Asking me if I wanted to try something.
Just for a little while. Just for you.
I remember the day heaven let me go—just for a day, mind you—just so I could visit.
So I could comfort you. Continue reading “Time’s Loss”
He was older when I took his pelt.
That’s why it was an easy kill. Why tearing his jaw off wasn’t as hard as it should’ve been. In that moment, I wasn’t akin to Hercules, not like I wanted to be. Instead, I was only proving that I was a brute. Strong, yes.
But not like a god.
Not like the son of a god.
People stopped believing in the beasts forever ago. Lost faith in the lore. Took to science, to thinking that superpowers were a thing of biology. Left mythics behind. Left it to crumble, to rot. Do whatever it was that old, abandoned things had to do in order to cease.
They were fools.
In their lack of understanding—their strive for solid, concrete knowledge—they cut themselves off at the knees. Made themselves weak. Turned off a faucet that granted power, that granted real, true understanding.
But, not me.
When I killed the lion, I still had to rip the fur off his body. Still had to skin him. Still had to prove I had enough strength to pull even the invincible apart.
On that day, my proving began.
And it continues.
Even now, it continues. Continue reading “One Raging Lion”
“You could be brave.”
“I could be.”
“You could be strong.”
“I could be.”
“And you could be the champion.”
“I could be the champion.”
“So then… why not?”
I can’t help but laugh a little at how incredulous he sounds. How perplexed. It would make no sense to him, being a former champion and all, but:
It makes sense to me.
Turning from the ring of fighters, I walk away as I tell him.
“Not all things that could, should.”
I have better things to do than win titles.
I have a king to slay. Continue reading “Armored Dragon”
They didn’t speak of him. Not at all.
The king with the white mane.
A notch hanging off his ear.
Ridges gouged around his eyes.
He sat in the corner, silently. Watchfully. His tail swishing mindfully as the others ignored him. Steering clear of him, because of his odd color. His strange scars. Or, maybe, because of the way he seemed quiet. Daunting.
He was an anomaly, honestly. Something to marvel. To ponder. Something to observe, take in, and marvel.
And yet, there he was.
There, in the corner—away from all the others—he sat. Just the tiniest bit of sunlight shrinking in his eye.
The white lion. Continue reading “Waiting For Lions”
Rough, I guess.
That’s a light word for it, but that’s the only one I can think of. Scars dragging along his face, shattering the color of his eyes. Creating the most piercing stare I’ve ever seen, all wrapped up in sharp teeth and a snarl.
“You the new rider?” he asked, voice rumbling like a rock falling off a mountain.
“Yes,” I told him levelly. Proud of myself for looking him in the eye.
He snorted, though I’m not sure what it meant.
He said, “Then I guess I’m your wolf.”
Continue reading “Battle Hound”
The hardest thing about falling in a canyon is:
Getting out. Continue reading “Between the Bluffs”
It’s not that I’m afraid.
…really, I’m not.
It’s just that…
What happens if it doesn’t work? What happens if I fall and I don’t catch myself?
What happens if I jump, and don’t fly?
Continue reading “Flying, Falling, and The In-Between”
Which, in their book, translated to:
They were going to throw me out. As if I were trash.
As if I weren’t human.
They were going to throw me out because I’d somehow become “incomplete”.
That’s how they saw it.
But, luckily for me, they weren’t the only ones looking. Continue reading “Fixin’”
I can feel the wind.
I have seen the clouds form and break. Seen the sky crack and crush thousands. Watched the earth shatter and split, spilling hundreds of lives right into the abyss. I have heard the war cries, heard the drums, the clanking of shields and the splintering of spears. Watched the dark beasts rise, and seen the dragons of blood and bone call us to Hades’s grip.
I have seen all these things. Watched death vomit its curse up, over whole fields, whole towns, whole cities.
I have seen many, many battles.
Fought in many long wars.
I can feel the wind rise, and die. It’s breath becomes just a whisper on my skin.
Just like the rest of us.
Just like me.
I have won this battle, but…
I don’t think I’ll win another.
I’m done for. Continue reading “Battle Born”
There are cracks in the wall.
I can hear the creaking of the floorboards. See the rot from the water that leaks in. Here, the floor isn’t sturdy. You could fall right through—the boards are as thin as wet paper. Here, there isn’t much shelter from anything. This old, desolate house. Oozing and creaking and moaning along with the things that fill the walls.
Where do you think the cracks came from?
Obviously, they came from them.
They spill out some nights. Flooding the house, over and over again. Playing like a song on repeat. Scratching and screaming and scurrying over the ceilings. Wailing and terrorizing and eating away at the souls of others. Desperate and jealous. Creatures that haunt, that steal, that kill—all for pleasure.
I was raised with them, you know.
I grew up here, in this house.
It screams at me.
And I hear the rhetoric again. The chanting that always filters through the screams. Words that float through the panic, through the muck, through the mire of spirits unrested. I hear their demand. The threat of what’s to come if I don’t heed them, if I don’t obey. I hear the words, carrying from the house to this faraway place, and I suppress a shudder.
Protect the ghost. Continue reading “Haunted Nevermore”