Chapter 51:

Awakening

Elyon - Gods among us


Si-il Gúr — shouted the goddess Ishtar, simultaneously unleashing a whirlwind from the swing of her curved sword, which struck Ana directly, causing her to stagger back with several cuts on her body.

Ana defeated several Malakim that Ishtar had sent to fight against her, but realizing that they couldn't win, Ishtar had decided to intervene.

—Ninshubur, you haven't properly trained these men, look how quickly they fall!— Ishtar frustratedly said to the goddess standing beside her, who looked like her secretary.

"I believe, Milady Ishtar, that a goddess who could easily defeat Mahrem would have no trouble defeating a group of Malakim, regardless of their training— Ninshubur responded.

—You couldn't defeat her either?— the beautiful Sumerian goddess asked.

"No, Milady, I couldn't either— her secretary replied.

Ana felt to the ground, and the few remaining Malakim began to attack her, but the goddess, channeling her divine energy, sent them flying.

—Malakim, leave that goddess alone. I've realized you are no match for her, and I don't want to lose any more personnel— Ishtar shouted to the angels who were getting up after Ana's attack.

—I don't have time for this— said Ana as she stood up again, raising her sword Dyrnwyn with both hands.

Ishtar leaped down from the ruined temple where she had been standing, to stand on the same ground as Ana.

—Well, if you want to end this quickly, you'll have to defeat me first— the Mesopotamian goddess responded.

—You are Keres number six, correct? Number seven was no match for me— Ana said with a smile as she prepared to attack.

But Ishtar disappeared from her sight, and thanks to Ana's quick reflexes, she managed to dodge the lightning-fast attack from the queen of Uruk, although she received a wound on her left arm.

—Don't be mistaken, Morrigan. There's an abyss of difference between Mahrem and me— Ishtar replied, appearing behind Ana with her sword unsheathed.

—I could hardly see her movements, and I can sense... this girl is using sacred elements in her weapon— Ana thought as her arm healed from the wound.

Ninshubur and the Malakim, who had returned to the ruins where they had appeared, watched the fight and cheered with joy, supporting Ishtar in her battle.

—Milady Ishtar, you are so magnificent!— exclaimed Ninshubur, completely thrilled.

Ana turned to face Ishtar and raised her sword.

—Well, now it's my turn— she said, launching herself to attack the goddess, but Ishtar defended herself using her curved sword.

The clash of their weapons caused a tremor and a shockwave that brought down several buildings. Ana and Ishtar clashed their weapons multiple times as they flew through the area, which began to resemble an erupting volcano due to the power Tania continued to emanate.

Ana and Ishtar separated and jumped onto two nearby buildings. The Irish goddess looked desperate, knowing that Tania was trapped in a nightmare and suffering, and time was passing faster.

In her desperation, the goddess didn't think clearly and wanted to attack Ishtar with her strongest technique.

Claimhte Fomoire!— Ana shouted, and the demonic Formorians appeared behind her, as if opening a door from the abyss, raising their eerie weapons. Ana pointed towards Ishtar, and they all fired energy from their weapons, which sped towards the Mesopotamian goddess.

But Ishtar, spinning her sickle as if it were a spear, repelled all the attacks made by the swords. Then the goddess shouted, —Sagh-gaz Galla aka!

An enormous wave of white energy surged from Ishtar's sword, hurling towards Ana and her demonic allies, who were struck by the technique. The Formorians disappeared along with their dark dimension.

—Are you using demons against me? Me? The goddess who conquered the underworld and slaughtered hundreds of demons who tried to steal my Me?— Ishtar asked, laughing.

Ninshubur and the Malakim, who had approached to watch the fight, cheered excitedly when Ishtar mentioned her triumphs.

—I must inform you that I also defeated some of those demons mentioned by Milady Ishtar— Ishtar's secretary said with an air of arrogance, seeking admiration from her companions. However, the Malakim paid her no attention; they were still excited watching the magnificent Ishtar. Ninshubur felt embarrassed speaking to herself.

Ana stood up pitifully, wearing an expression of distress.

—No, this is a nightmare. That was my best technique— she thought desperately.

Si-il Gúr!— Ishtar shouted, and a gust of wind emanated from her curved sword, hurling towards Ana, who was struck by the technique once again, tearing through the building she was in. The goddess fell to the ground, near where the colossal sphinx had been constructed.

At that moment, a woman's voice could be heard in the distance. —Haven't you killed that Morrigan yet, Ishtar?— she said.

Ishtar turned around and shouted, —Don't meddle in matters that don't concern you, Sekhmet!—

—But they do concern me because I'm getting impatient— the female voice continued from afar.

At that moment, the owner of the voice appeared on another of the remaining standing buildings. She had a dark complexion and was dressed like an Egyptian princess in a red dress, a color that Ana likened to blood. However, the most macabre aspect of her was her mask. It was a lioness mask, but it was green and had a devilish gaze, thirsting for violence; and Ana swore she could see blood dripping from its fangs and claws.

—Don't meddle where you're not called, Sekhmet! She is my rival!— Ishtar continued shouting.

—Fine, let's do this— Sekhmet said.

—I'll kill the girl who is turning this planet into a volcano, and if I do it before you kill that girl, then I'll kill her myself— the lioness goddess said, laughing.

Ana took the opportunity and flew towards Tania while the two goddesses were arguing and not paying attention.

—No, you fool! That girl will make time move faster— Ishtar shouted angrily.

—Why wait when we can kill them both right here?— Sekhmet responded.

—Because when that girl wakes up, she'll feel guilty for causing the death of her allies— Ishtar replied.

Sekhmet sat down and tried to analyze the situation.

—But if we kill her, no one will feel remorse anymore— she expressed her viewpoint.

—The mighty Ares told me something before coming here. Anath just informed him that Lel wants that girl alive— the Mesopotamian goddess responded.

—That's boring— Sekhmet replied.

—She is the daughter of Elyon— Ishtar insisted.

—Who? I don't give a shit who that god is— the Egyptian goddess responded indifferently.

—I've told you, Sekhmet, don't interfere. I can perfectly handle the situation. So, wait here and don't kill the fire goddess— Ishtar continued, annoyed.

—Did you notice that Morrigan just escaped?— Sekhmet asked.

Ishtar turned to look, and indeed, Ana was no longer there.

—Damn it! Why didn't you tell me earlier?— Ishtar responded, frustrated.

—Very simple— Sekhmet replied.

—Because I told you I would kill both of them— the lioness goddess said as she stood up and looked towards where Tania was emanating her energy.

—No, wait, Sekhmet! You can't kill Tannit! Stop!— Ishtar shouted.

—If you can stop me, then do it— the lioness goddess replied.

—You will be punished by Lord Ares!— Ishtar shouted.

—To hell with Lord Ares! Neither you nor I care about him. You're just here to have fun, and so am I, but my fun is more sadistic than yours, spoiled little girl— Sekhmet shouted as she watched Ana attempting to enter the field of fire created by Tania's energy.

The lioness goddess assumed a running position, her eyes gleaming with bloodlust, and she darted at full speed towards where Tania was.

Ana was trying to enter Tania's field of fire, but it was too strong and she couldn't do it.

—Tania, Tania, you have to wake up, or we'll all die here!— she shouted.

But Tania didn't hear. In her mind, she was being suffocated by hundreds of people covering her body. The goddess had closed her eyes and resigned herself to death.

—I killed all of you. I allowed the genocide of the people I was supposed to protect. I deserve to die— she thought.

But in the distance, faintly, she heard Ana's voice.

—Ana? What are you doing here?— Tania asked.

Ana, who continued to endure the burning flames, began to crawl in. Her skin was being scorched, and her muscles were visible due to the loss of her skin from the heat. The Irish goddess then hit Tania with all her strength, causing her to fall to the ground and extinguishing her flames.

—You damn coward, Tania! Stop playing the victim!— Ana shouted.

Tania, who was listening from afar in her mind, felt the blow and opened her eyes. Among the hundreds of children on top of her, she saw Ana's burnt face, unable to shed tears because her tear glands had dried up.

—I'm fed up with you, Tania. I tried to do it peacefully, to listen to your problems, but nothing. Rodrigo made you smile, tried to be kind to you, and you reward him by trying to kill him. I'm sick of you, Tania, you're a fucking coward!— Ana shouted furiously, trying to cry, but she couldn't, although her face was slowly recovering.

—You don't understand what I've suffered!— Tania shouted angrily.

—We've all suffered, Tania! All of us! But we get up and move forward. You made wrong decisions, apologize and keep going. Don't you remember who pulled you out of the dirty streets of Barcelona and recommended you in Lel for a job? Don't you remember that I told you we had to move forward?— Ana shouted furiously.

Sekhmet, who was approaching at high speed, conjured fire in her left hand and shaped it into a claw, similar to how Tania used to fight.

—You're within my range now!— she shouted.

—I killed children for power, I allowed the genocide of my people!— Tania shouted angrily and began to sob.

—I am a sinner!— she said.

—I am a sinner too!— Ana shouted. —Do you think those Irish idiots didn't sacrifice humans in my honor? Do you think I feel happy for betraying my own kind and allowing my sisters to be captured by Dagda? Damn it, Tania. I have suffered too, but I'm here, standing. You weren't responsible for the death of those children, you didn't take your sword and kill the people of Carthage. Even with your wrong decisions, get up and move forward to make up for your mistakes. Give those children's souls a future within you. They will support you if you create a world where no child has to suffer what they suffered, just like I do with the souls of the people within me!— Ana shouted furiously while crying, as her skin and tear glands had recovered.

—Now, die!— Sekhmet shouted.

Ana turned to look at the lioness goddess and froze.

—She's too fast. I won't be able to stop her— she thought.

But at that moment, Tania gripped Sekhmet's hand, stopping her attack. It had happened so quickly that Ana hadn't even seen what had happened.

—Of all the people I had to see today, it had to be you, Master Sekhmet— Tania said angrily.

—Do I know you from somewhere?— the Egyptian lioness goddess asked. But before she could finish the sentence, Tania threw her towards the rubble that remained of the now-ruined Martian city.

—Impressive, I couldn't see anything. Tania is monstrously more powerful than me— Ana thought as she watched in astonishment at the goddess with fiery hair.

—That punch hurt— the Punic goddess said.

—Sorry, I was desperate— Ana said.

Tania began to laugh.

—I think that's what I needed. I can still feel these children inside me, but you're right. In order for their souls to rest in peace, I must create a world where none of them will suffer such a cruel fate again. And today, they will help me defeat these wretches and restore peace to the world— Tania said.

—And rescue Anpiel— Ana added as she stood up once again.

—Of course— Tania responded with a smile as she watched Sekhmet rise from the rubble. The goddess then prepared her fiery claw for battle.

Exactly four hours remained.