Chapter 1:

Chapter 1

Fate of Yggdrasil

Part 1
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It was impossible to stay asleep with the incessant buzzing, clearly from my phone, persisting. Coupled with the growing intensity of the sun’s rays, I relented, giving up on sleep and answering the call with a lethargic greeting.Bookmark here

The screen read out: MomBookmark here

“H-Hello…” Clearing my throat, I reiterated. “Hello?”Bookmark here

“Fate! Don’t tell me you’re still in bed right now?! I thought you had a test today!” Being reminded of my upcoming exam made me give an exasperated grunt.Bookmark here

“It’s fine, Mom. Class doesn’t start until ten.”Bookmark here

“It’s nine thirty!”Bookmark here

“…What!?” Like having an ice cube dropped down your shirt, that woke me up immediately. I rose from my bed, nearly smacking my dome on the ceiling and rushed for the bathroom. “Dammit! Thanks for the wakeup call, Mom. Bye!” Tossing my phone and clothes aside I jumped in the shower. To go along with my metaphor, freezing cold water spilled from the showerhead onto my skin. It felt like I’d jumped into the Arctic Ocean by mistake, but I just endured and washed myself. (Crap! I’ll have to call the landlord about the water heater…again.) There wasn’t much time left, but I didn’t want to look like a total slob. I got out of the shower to check myself out in the mirror and brush my teeth. (Same dark brown eyes, and black hair needing to be cut…yup! Still the same guy I was when I went to sleep. Thanks, mirror, you haven’t lied to me yet.) With the rest done, all that was left were my clothes. I grabbed my brown shirt and black pants while slipping on my sneakers, then dashed out of the small two-bedroom apartment we called home.Bookmark here

(Wait…did I forget anything? Shit!) My phone, wallet, book-bag and keys all sat on the front table neatly arranged so I wouldn’t forget them on the way out. Being in such a rush, I’d forgotten almost everything, despite preparing them the night before. (Figures, the first time in my life I stay up studying for a test, I forget everything and could be tardy. I’m a little nervous, but I should be fine. Running through the park should cut down on my trip, it’s almost a straight shot to the campus.) The sack bouncing up and down on my back felt like a monkey latched onto me, but if I didn’t rush, I’d have been late for my midterms.Bookmark here

Part 2Bookmark here

My college wasn’t a big one, in fact it was rather small, so much so that the campus fit smackdab in the middle of the city. Named after some rich old guy who donated enough money to get his name put on a bunch of buildings, Benson College was well-to-do, plenty of clubs and viewed as a jewel of Greenville. The security guards didn’t stop me as I burst in through the front doors and dashed up the stairs straight past them.Bookmark here

“Better Hurry, Fate!” We were on good terms, the guards and myself, but I had to ignore their teasing.Bookmark here

Running up four flights was the better option, since the elevator in the lobby was crowded with five or so other students by the door; that I’d spotted on my way in. Out of breath, but with the classroom in sight I picked up speed. My hand reached for the door just as the professor was attempting to slam it shut.Bookmark here

“Fate Isley…just in time…barely.” My old, crotchety professor said as he continued to push on the door with one hand. It was obvious that he was still trying to force me out, though with my foot wedged between the frame, I continued to inch in.Bookmark here

“Yeah…I made it, Mr. Russell.” Calling him mister instead of professor was an intended slight.Bookmark here

He finally released his grip on the door as I stumbled in.Bookmark here

“Sit down, or I’ll have you removed.”Bookmark here

“Okay…relax…” The workbenches of students already seated and talking amongst themselves ran up four rows back, on both sides of the large room. The others were already prepared, grouped up with friends or in their usual seats; someone was in mine, leaving me adrift as I awkwardly ambled by where I’d normally be.Bookmark here

“Fate…over here.” A sweetly whispered voice came across the room. It was my friend, Gabriella; she’d kept a seat open for me at the top left most bench. I gladly slid in beside her, flashing a smile.Bookmark here

“Thanks, Gabby.” I whispered to her under my breath.Bookmark here

“No worries.” She smiled back.Bookmark here

“Alright everyone, you’ll have three hours to finish the test. Once you’re done you may leave…that is all. I shall now hand you the testing sheets.” Mr. Russell was a stickler for the old ways.Bookmark here

“Using paper…what is this, the nineties? It’s 2016, right?” I said in a hushed tone, so that only Gabriella could hear. She giggled a little.Bookmark here

When Professor Russell came to me, with an irritated look in his squinty, gray eyes it felt like an old vulture wanting to pick at a small animal. His hair starting to fall out of that wrinkled, pale white head of his added to his bird like appearance. The more I noticed it, the more I had to stifle a laugh.Bookmark here

He handed me four papers to pass down the row. After I took mine, I gave the rest to Gabby, and so on down the line.Bookmark here

(I studied for the first time in my life for this test. I hope I pass.)Bookmark here

Part 3Bookmark here

Three hours sped by faster than expected. I finished filling in every answer on my sheet…but only barely. When I leaned back in my seat an unintended groan erupted forth from my anxiety riddled chest.Bookmark here

“What’s the matter Fate?” Gabriella remained seated beside me, calmly working on another paper for a different class. She finished her test quickly, before me and a few others.Bookmark here

“Nothing, I think I passed…maybe…I hope...” I looked down to Mr. Russell. He shot an ominous grin, which made my stomach churn.Bookmark here

With midterms over, and it only being an hour past noon, I had the rest of the day to do whatever I wanted. Gabby and I exited the room and started to walk down the hall. “So, Fate, want to grab something to eat? That new restaurant is open down near the train station.” From the eagerness of her eyes and leaning into my shoulder, I could tell she was attempting to sway me.Bookmark here

“Sure, I’m free.” I acquiesced, without really to be persuaded.Bookmark here

We exited the building and started a somewhat lengthy walk to the diner.Bookmark here

“Fate, have you been keeping up with The Alchemist of Hazzard? You’re the only person I get to talk to about it in person, so please tell me you have!”Bookmark here

“Yeah, I have. But really, what’s with you and these ‘young adult’ T.V. shows anyway?”Bookmark here

“Don’t say it like that. You make it sound like I’m weird or something.”Bookmark here

“Well…anyway, yeah I saw The Alchemist of Hazzard. One thing I don’t understand is why Serena keeps going back to Fredrick if he treats her like crap.”Bookmark here

“*Sigh*…such a boy despite being a man. Fredrick isn’t treating her like crap. It’s just difficult for him to express his feelings.”Bookmark here

“If someone smacked my food off the table and called me a dog-faced bumpkin, the only thing that person would be expressing is how much pain they were in after I beat their ass.”Bookmark here

“Ohuhu…such a tough guy. Is that why you’ve been working out so much lately?”Bookmark here

“Huh? I-I haven’t changed my usual workout routine.” (Unless you count doubling up on my usual routine.)Bookmark here

“Whatever you say, Mr. Muscle.”Bookmark here

“Why poke fun at me?”Bookmark here

She chuckled at that. Her beautiful smile was so bright and welcoming. Being with Gabriella made time flow so quickly. My chest felt warm, my hands would shake whenever she’d touch me, and I’d always try to not stumble over my words around her. I liked her…so much.Bookmark here

My first year in college is when I realized I had feelings for Gabby, but we had been friends since our junior year in high school. Always the prettiest girl in every one of my classes and one of the smartest; it’s amazing how long it took for me to notice how often I’d catch myself thinking about her. With those robust chestnut colored lochs running all the way down her shoulders, how could my eyes not get fixated on her whenever she’d walk by? She had great style, was tall and always stayed in excellent shape. Those slightly yellow eyes and extremely light brown skin added to her beauty, if only in my own eyes. She had one of the most beautiful faces; her small nose and perfectly set cheek bones…it was unfair for a person to look so good and be so nice, right?Bookmark here

“Fate!”Bookmark here

“Huh?” I’d gotten lost in thoughts of her, again.Bookmark here

“You okay?”Bookmark here

“Yeah, yeah. I’m fine, don’t worry about it.”Bookmark here

My phone started buzzing as soon as we reached the restaurant’s front.Bookmark here

“Go ahead in, I’ve got a call.”Bookmark here

“Okay.”Bookmark here

The name ‘Chester’ and an image of my ghastly looking friend was on the screen. I sighed, knowing whatever it was would be annoying.Bookmark here

“Yes, Chester?”Bookmark here

“Comrade! Did you see!?” Chester yelled from the other side of the phone with his deep creepy voice.Bookmark here

“See what?”Bookmark here

“My god man, you need to come over to the club room! Right! Now!!” His voice bellowed from the receiver so loud people walking by could hear.Bookmark here

“Later…I’m kind of busy right now.”Bookmark here

“Doing what? Are you hanging out with Gabriella again? You don’t have a chance with her. Forget the girl and come join us on a crusade of both knowledge and discovery!”Bookmark here

“Oh, shut up, Chester!” I hung up the phone and went into the restaurant. Gabby got us a booth and we ordered our food, chatting while we waited for it to arrive. When our lunch finally got to the table, I took notice of the other patrons sneaking peeks in our direction. People being taken with Gabby was nothing new.Bookmark here

“You have to get tired of having people stare at you all of the time, huh.”Bookmark here

“Hmm? I don’t think they’re staring at me.”Bookmark here

“Then who could they be staring at? Not me.”Bookmark here

“I think it is you.”Bookmark here

“Nah.”Bookmark here

“You don’t give yourself enough credit. You’re pretty good looking, you know?”Bookmark here

“Nah…” Bookmark here

“No, really! You’re lean, but not skinny. Your hair is unique, and very well kept. You’re not a pale skeleton like Chester, and you have a really pretty face.”Bookmark here

“…You sound more like you’re complementing one of your girlfriends. You do realize that, right?”Bookmark here

“Haha, Sorry! Man, the food here really sucks, huh?”Bookmark here

“Yeah, it does.”Bookmark here

Before I noticed an hour had passed.Bookmark here

We walked back towards the college campus, since my apartment was in that direction and Gabby still had another class. While we were in the diner, the murky clouds swallowed up the sun and left us with nothing but a stuffy, gray sky. It felt like rain would start at any minute, which didn’t bother me as I rather enjoyed the sensation of rain on my skin.Bookmark here

We prepared to part ways upon reaching the college campus.Bookmark here

“Alright Fate, I’ll see you later!”Bookmark here

“Try not to learn too hard…” (Learn too hard? What am I even saying?)Bookmark here

“Gabby!” Someone yelled for Gabby out of nowhere. It was a voice I was too familiar with and not fond of.Bookmark here

The mound of muscles in a too tight shirt and strong body spray came storming over to us…Gabby’s boyfriend, Ken. He was a hulking douchebag that thought he was way cooler and smarter than everyone else; seeing as he was with Gabby must’ve meant he had something that I just couldn’t see.Bookmark here

“Yo, babe, where you been?”Bookmark here

“Oh…I was with Fate.” Gabby seemed rather annoyed, not even bothering to look Ken in the eyes as she crossed her arms and cut her head away.Bookmark here

(Did they have a fight or something? Best not to ask. Last time something like this happened she pouted for a solid day.)Bookmark here

“Fate again, huh?” He shot me a dirty look. It’s hard to take someone seriously when the first thought that comes to your mind when you see them is a 90’s rap-rock band. “Listen, babe, I just want to know why you’ve been ignoring me?”Bookmark here

“Last time I called, you were too busy talking with some other girl.”Bookmark here

“I told you that was my mom!”Bookmark here

“No, it wasn’t, I know what Mrs. Cockburn sounds like and that wasn’t her!”Bookmark here

“T-Then you must have heard my sister.”Bookmark here

(I will never understand why a girl as great as Gabby is with such a loser. They’ve been going out on-and-off since we started college. They always seem to fight over him ‘possibly’ cheating.)Bookmark here

“Hang on babe, give me another chance! Let’s talk about it…I’ll take you to that new restaurant near the station that you wanted to go to. We can talk it out there.”Bookmark here

“Hmph…Fate and I just came back from there! The food was delicious!”Bookmark here

(This is going to get a lot worse before it gets any better.)Bookmark here

“…You know…I spend a lot of time hearing you say bad things about me, but then you go and hang out with Fate all the time! Come here!”Bookmark here

“Ahh! Stop!” Ken aggressively grabbed Gabby by the arm. In response, I’d latched onto Ken’s arm, my body moving without me even noticing.Bookmark here

“What do you think you’re doing?”Bookmark here

“Uh…” (At times like this you’re supposed to come up with something witty and cool to say, right?) “Hands off…” That wasn’t cool or witty, and my voice cracked a bit. Not imposing at all.Bookmark here

“Get your hands off me, Isley!”Bookmark here

“Fate, don’t worry! It’s okay.” Gabby’s arm was still tightly in Ken’s grip, so even with me noting her worry, my pride and concern didn’t allow me to back down. That baseless pride of mine had gotten me into bad situations before, it wasn’t anything new. Bookmark here

(Crap, I can’t just back off after that!) “I-I said hands off her! She doesn’t want to go and you’re hurting her.”Bookmark here

“You little…” Ken let go of Gabby and swung on me…and I dodged it!Bookmark here

(Wow, guess I’m a better fighter then I thought.) Shouldn’t have gotten cocky because I dodged the first one, since I didn’t dodge the second, or third, or fourth, or fifth, or any of the three stomps that rained down onto me. Eventually the campus police had to come and break it up.Bookmark here

Part 4Bookmark here

I sat on the ground still recuperating from the fight, or I guess, one-sided beating would be more correct. My legs had betrayed me half way through, so my head and gut ended up taking the brunt of the assault. Blood ran from my nose and a bit dripped from my lower lip all the way down onto my white tee-shirt.Bookmark here

Gabby spoke to the campus cops who’d escorted Ken away. Once finished, she rushed back to my side.Bookmark here

“I never meant to get you caught up in all of this, but thank you so much for helping me, Fate. Can you stand? Do you want me to call an ambulance?” She was just trying to be nice, but her words and sympathetic eyes stung at my pride.Bookmark here

“Don’t worry about it. I’m fine! I’ve got to go; t-the guys are waiting for me in the clubroom.” I got to my feet and staggered away. Walking hurt like crazy, but I was too embarrassed to ask for any help. I didn’t want to go to the clubroom, but going home with my face like it was, Mom would have freaked out.Bookmark here

“Hey, Fate! Fate!”Bookmark here

She called me, but I didn’t want to turn around and show her my beaten and bloodied face again. That battered face of mine was attracting some attention from onlookers, so I took a few minutes to wash up as best as possible.Bookmark here

The campus - despite being rather small did have a few extra buildings that were used for clubs and other functions. The club I was headed for was in one of the smaller, more alienated buildings, which worked to the club’s advantage. We didn’t need too many people around judging us for being ‘weird’. My sneakers squeaked on the somewhat dusty hall floor; clearly our spot was being neglected by the cleaning staff once more. I couldn’t be too upset, since our front door was admittedly off-putting. To match the theme of the club, our front door was old and rusty, paint chipping and far heavier than any of the others. We’d gotten complaints before, but for the ‘Occult Research and Study club’, it was very on brand.Bookmark here

The usual bunch of dudes and a single girl sitting on their laptops, reading books, trying to summon ghosts or find pictures of UFOs somehow comforted me as I pulled open our chamber door. The room still needed a good cleaning and the windows were obscured with curtains which was perfect for the ambiance. Chester was the first to take notice of me entering the room.Bookmark here

“Hey Fa…whoa, what happened to you!?” His yelling took everyone else by surprise and they all turned to face me.Bookmark here

“It’s nothing, don’t worry about it.” I waved it off and took a seat at the table in the center of the room. The others kept staring at me as I sat back in the chair and closed my eyes, trying to destress.Bookmark here

“Wait, Fate, don’t go to sleep!!!” Chester leapt across the table tackling me to the floor!Bookmark here

“What the hell are you doing, you moron!” I kicked him off.Bookmark here

“If you fall asleep like that, you’ll fall into a coma!”Bookmark here

“Quit yelling! I won’t fall into a coma!!!” Screaming back at Chester helped alleviate some of the pent-up frustrations twisted around in my chest.Bookmark here

“N-No, he’s right Fate. If you fall asleep, you’ll fall into a-a coma.” Teddy spoke up from the other side of the room, having had just pealed the fresh plastic wrap off a mock Necronomicon. He was a big loveable type of guy. So large in fact, that the flesh bound book was dwarfed in the hands of his six-foot five frame, though with his stutter, the imposing size did little to create an aura of intimidation; coupled with the tuft of curly red hair atop his head, no one could think of the guy as dangerous. “M-maybe if he does fall asleep, we c-can read some lines from the book here a-and it’ll reawaken him w-with new powers…” He trailed off talking to himself, as per usual. Bookmark here

“Huh!? I didn’t hear you, Teddy! You’ll need to speak up!!!” I continued to yell jokingly.Bookmark here

“Will you idiots stop yelling?!” Demica, the lone girl in the Occult Research and Study club chimed in as well. With her nose pressed so firmly into a book that the pages hid my friend’s slightly freckled face. Only her striking green eyes were glimpsable in between the strands of dirty-blonde hair masking her visage.Bookmark here

“Demica, why don’t you just wear your glasses?”Bookmark here

“Because, I refuse to wear those enormous, thick, nerdy bifocals!” Demica wasn’t a bad looking girl but believed the glasses coupled with her nerdy and reserved manner of dressing would make her look like the archetypal ‘geek girl’; slightly vain would be the best way to describe her.Bookmark here

“Fine, enjoy being blind. Perry, make sure you move everything out of your sister’s path on the way home, so she doesn’t trip and break her neck.”Bookmark here

“Gotcha, Fate!” Perry, Demica’s younger brother, looked so like her that one could mistake them for fraternal twins; aside for the fact that he didn’t need glasses for his smaller, gray eyes.Bookmark here

Chester and I got back up off the ground, returning to our seats at the table.Bookmark here

“Sorry man, I just thought you could use a little pick me up.”Bookmark here

“Really, then why’d you tackle me down? Ah…”Bookmark here

“Ah…”Bookmark here

We both pointed at each other in a joking fashion, eliciting an audible groan from the others. Chester plopped a laptop on the table in front of me and flipped it open with enthusiasm. He turned to some internet video and pointed at the screen.Bookmark here

“So, Fate, did you see this yet?”Bookmark here

“No. Is this what you wanted me to rush over here for?”Bookmark here

“Yes! It’s an unidentified flying object - a UFO!”Bookmark here

“Hmm? Play the video.”Bookmark here

Said video showcased an old white man with gray hair and numerous liver spots covering his head, reminding me of Professor Russell. He was standing in a field, holding a microphone with dark clouds looming over a small mountain range in the background. It was a report in the state just south of us in some backwater county I’d never heard of.Bookmark here

“Turn it up. I can’t hear.”Bookmark here

“Okay…” Chester did so just in time for the reporter to reach his point. Bookmark here

“…and it appears that it was seen at some time between eleven o’clock and one o’clock today. Locals reported a strange object that flew to the top of the mountain range and stopped, completely suspended in midair. After sitting still for a few minutes, it suddenly took off at an absurd speed headed up north. We will continue to give you information as the story develops.” The video ended.Bookmark here

“Must’ve been a really slow news day if they wasted airtime on that…” I leaned back in my chair, unamused.Bookmark here

“What are you talking about!? This is huge!!”Bookmark here

“Okay, stop yelling already!!!”Bookmark here

“Cut it out!!!!” Demica threw down her book and screamed at us. She then pulled out her phone and brought up an article. “Here, you idiots!”Bookmark here

The article read: Unidentified flying object pictures.Bookmark here

“A…Human…or a kite…” I had to hold myself back from laughing. The image was blurry, but I could tell from a closer look that it wasn’t anything like a UFO. If I had to compare the images to something, they looked more like a cartoon depiction of a witch’s silhouette; pointy hat, riding a broom stick and all. “So, does this mean we can stop focusing on it since it’s not an alien?”Bookmark here

Chester’s long uncut hair covered his eyes as he looked down. I thought that meant he’d given up, but… “No, of course not! This is even bigger! Can you not see the type of story this is!? If we can dig up more information on what it is, we’d be famous!”Bookmark here

“You moron! It was a kite or some dumb prank. It probably got caught on something near the top of the mountain and then got blown away by the wind.” Demica was always good at cutting down Chester’s ridiculous assumptions.Bookmark here

“Woman, you do not understand!!”Bookmark here

Once Demica and Chester finished their usual half an hour of bickering, we ended up watching a few old movies and did some actual research like the club was supposed to. Nothing turned up and at the end of the day we decided it was time for everyone to head out.Bookmark here

“I’ll see y-you guys tomorrow.” Teddy hopped on his bike and road off.Bookmark here

“Same here, come on Perry!”Bookmark here

“Alright, later guys!” The siblings strolled off as well.Bookmark here

“Well, Fate…now that they’re gone…want to explain the bruises?”Bookmark here

I let out a big sigh and with my back leaned against a nearby tree, told Chester everything…Bookmark here

“Welp, you really should’ve seen something like that coming.”Bookmark here

“How was I supposed to react? He just grabbed her, and my body moved on its own.”Bookmark here

“Not the best excuse, but anyway; what did Gabriella say?”Bookmark here

“Nothing really…just that she didn’t mean to get me involved. I don’t really care though.”Bookmark here

“Because you like her?”Bookmark here

“Because I like her.”Bookmark here

“Alright, I’m heading home. Tomorrow, we’ll discover the secret of the UFO! MUHAHAHA!!” Chester left with his same old strange laugh, like some kind of evil mastermind.Bookmark here

Exhausted, I began trudging back home. Once home, I’d need to ice my face and clean the wounds again.Bookmark here

Chilling wind cut through my thin tee-shirt like water through a cheap napkin. Somehow the weather had changed so dramatically from the afternoon, my breath had become visible. The road leading home was well illuminated by the numerous street lights; however, it was a bit out of the way, but by cutting through the park I’d make it home in half the time. Not wanting to freeze in the cold and not being afraid of the dark, the park quickly became my preferred route.Bookmark here

Normally, the park exuded a calming and relaxed atmosphere, but at cloaked in the dark of night, only lit by the few lamp posts set up, it felt more like a graveyard. The walkway for the park curved, ebbing in and out making unnecessary turns so that people could see the ponds, the fountains and the bridge. I just cut straight across the grass and headed right for the bridge so that I could get home quicker.Bookmark here

The underpass beneath the bridge that most bike riders would cycle through when going around the park was where I was headed. At night, no one would bother to go through it since the lights inside would often blow out. The underpass’s length basically made it a short tunnel. I could see from where I was standing that the lights were still on in the passageway, fortunately, so I decided to head through. The white bricks and reflective metal caused the lights to blare even more so than usual.Bookmark here

As soon as I entered, a sudden, violent chill ran up my spine. Unease emanated from the other end of the tunnel. Without even looking up from the ground, I could feel a malicious gaze set on me. Near the very top of my vision, I could just barely make out a figure standing at the opposite end of the passageway. Whatever or whoever it was didn’t look human. A long pointy head and some long, thin, blunt object was cast in the light, yet held only blackness. It didn’t look very tall, but I couldn’t be sure with the distance.Bookmark here

The figure stood perfectly still, facing me…but I still couldn’t make out what it was. Whatever the thing was, it didn’t so much as flinch. Every time my head started to drift up so I could get a better look, fear radiated through my body like an electrical shock. I gave in - decided that the long way was much better than possibly putting myself in danger, but right as I turned to leave, the ominous feeling vanished. When I turned back to face the other end of the underpass, nothing was there.Bookmark here

(Did I imagine that? No, there was definitely something there.) I proceeded with caution, guard up as if I knew how to defend myself, until reaching the other side.Bookmark here

Exiting the miniature tunnel, I noted there was in fact nothing waiting for me. No one and nothing out of the ordinary.Bookmark here

(Maybe I did imagine it. That stupid video must have freaked me out more than I thought and today was pretty freaking long.) Still a little jumpy, I quickened my pace a bit. As I sped up though, something swiftly flew overhead shaking all the trees and blowing everything about. I didn’t get a chance to see what it was, nor did I want to. It wasn’t any bigger than a bird or a hawk, but I didn’t bother sticking around to investigate.Bookmark here

Part 5Bookmark here

I rushed into my apartment and slammed the door behind me, sliding down to the floor with my back pressed firmly against the threshold. Goosebumps still fervent on my skin, I caught myself laughing as the tension dissipated from both the air and my body.Bookmark here

(Can’t believe that I was freaked out over nothing! Damn, good thing Gabby can’t see me right now, she’d think I was a wimp…) After another minute of reassuring myself of my mental stability, exhaustion reared its head. Sleep became my main goal but the rumbling in my stomach overwhelmed even that.Bookmark here

From the entrance, I spied a plate of saran wrapped food sitting on the kitchen table with a note attached, waiting to be read.Bookmark here

The note read: From Mom, dear Fate, I’ll be late, this food is really great, warm it up on this plate! I’ll see you at two in the morning tomorrow…Bookmark here

(…I swear…if you’re going to do something as embarrassing as this, at least make the whole thing rhyme, don’t just give up at the very end!)Bookmark here

My Mother still treated me like a kid sometimes, which didn’t bother me that much, though it was still irritating. She worked two jobs, so she wouldn’t come home until the early morning most of the time, meaning that we’d not get a chance to see each other in person that often.Bookmark here

The microwave warmed my food as I dragged myself over to the shower. My body still ached all over from the fight. There was a cut on my scalp and lower lip, which stung under cold water; one of my arms was bruised and there was a crick in my neck, that’s all without mentioning the boot print on my gut.Bookmark here

“*Sigh*…what am I even hoping to get out of this? Gabby probably won’t even break up with that asshole. She’s known for a while now that he was cheating on her, hell everyone has to know by now if I know! Jackass couldn’t even think of a good excuse. I swear! Why is it so hard to understand women?” I got out of the shower, toweled off, got dressed and grabbed my food from the microwave. My long and annoying day was, for the most part, done. Kicking back in my room, watching TV while eating and trying to forget was how I’d planned on ending the evening. Bookmark here

All that action had made me very tired. I drifted off to sleep much to my dismay as I wanted to, at least, stay awake until my Mom came home. Sleep finally overcame me as I slowly drifted off.Bookmark here

*Tap…Tap…Tap…*Bookmark here

A tapping noise came from my window. It was barely audible at first, but then it got a bit louder. I got up, still dazed from being in a much deeper sleep than I’d planned. Staggering, I dragged my feet over to the window and grabbed the string to pull up the blinds.Bookmark here

Then it hit me…Bookmark here

(Wait…I’m on the third floor! How is someone knocking on my window? There’s no veranda outside of my window…)Bookmark here

*Tap…Tap…Tap…*Bookmark here

The tapping grew louder again. (A robber - no, a robber wouldn’t knock on the glass!) My curiosity got the better of me, so with my eyes clenched shut, I tugged the string. The old saying curiosity killed the cat, was never truer.Bookmark here

Before me, in my window stood a dark figure, eyes gleaming red, a twisted, evil smile parsing its lips and long hair, as black as a raven’s feathers. I saw it as some kind of lanky, black monster at first. (…) My mind went totally blank. I was so shocked that I couldn’t move a muscle!Bookmark here

We stared directly into each other’s eyes until I noticed the slender black legs stood atop a wooden broom. When I took notice of that, it snapped me out of my daze, then I also recognized how human like the figure was - in fact it looked like a girl wearing strange clothing. I didn’t get a chance to say or do anything else, because they lifted their hand with a tiny, glowing, red ball in it. She curled it between her index finger and thumb, then shot it through the glass of the window and directly into my throat.Bookmark here

(Huh?) It happened so fast that, the feeling of the small, dime sized object entering the front of my throat didn’t register. However, once I fell back onto my floor the pain surged throughout my entire body.Bookmark here

The pain of having my throat pierced was nothing compared to the inscrutable agony the rest of my body was going through. My skin felt like it was being rubbed with sand paper. My muscles and bones felt like they were on fire. My eyes started shaking so much I couldn’t see straight, until my vision just completely faded…only leaving me in complete and utter blackness. My body began to go numb, everything from my feet up to the top of my head. I couldn’t see, feel or even move. I started suffocating, if not from my neck being pierced, then just from having a panic attack.Bookmark here

“Well…seems like this one is actually surviving. His will to live is astounding.” I could hear a voice talking. It was soft but spoke in a very confident tone.Bookmark here

(I don’t want to die! I haven’t even lived that long a life; I haven’t even had a chance to see the world! I want to talk with Gabby one more time! Investigate the occult with my friends! I can’t leave Mom all alone! I can’t die and leave this world behind without having achieved anything - without having achieved any of my dreams or done anything with my life!) I couldn’t just accept dying like that without having accomplished anything and leave behind the people I loved.Bookmark here

“You keep crawling around, writhing in agony. Well, it doesn’t matter. From this moment on, you belong to me, and only me. You…shall be the one to bear the seed of Yggdrasil, and I, Anesha…shall bring about a new era for all, as the one and only goddess! I shall correct this world with my own two hands, remade in my elegant image! It will be built upon your grave. I appreciate your cooperation. Oh, and if you have any complaints, you can blame…fate, I guess.”Bookmark here

Her biting tone and gorgeous voice were the last things I remember from that night. It was my first informal meeting with Anesha and the beginning of the downward spiral of my life. No longer was I a regular person, but the bearer of the seed that would be the instrument used to either bring about an age of endless prosperity for humanity, or endless servitude.Bookmark here

End of chapter 1Bookmark here

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