Wax And Wane Pt 4

From the Story Arc: Coming Home

Previous Story in the Arc: Wax And Wane Pt 3 by Victoria Victrix (Monday, January 12, 2009)

Next Story in the Arc: Wax And Wane Pt 5 by Sister Shuma (Monday, January 12, 2009)

(posted Monday, January 12, 2009)

((written by Red Djinni))

Red had learned a lot during his tenure as a hero. A former member in good standing of the Peacekeepers, a founding member of the Jester’s Fury, and now one of the flagship personalities of the Alliance of Champions, his history was a rich tapestry of loss, of hard-fought victories and most of all, of lessons learned.

Still, every hero in Paragon, from Statesman to Joe Bob Ice Chucker, had his or her Achilles’ Heel. Some lesson they could never learn, no matter how many times they paid the price. Something in their disposition stubbornly clutched at personal traits best let go. For Red Djinni, he’d kept a bad habit of tempting fate.

“If I never see a portal again, or have to keep another secret, it’ll be too soon-”

He was interrupted by a brilliant flash, as the glowing form of an eternity snake devouring its own tail appeared before them. It was quite obviously a doorway, an entrance to a mystical place.

A portal.

Red’s face fell into his hands as he began to sob. Paladin clamped his gauntlet down on Red’s shoulder in sympathy.

“You know,” Paladin began tentatively, “you do this to yoursel-”

“Shut up, Gairdner,” Red hissed. “I’m trying to enjoy some ironic self-loathing here.”

The Voice sounded off in each of their heads, grand and majestic and above all, commanding. Under different circumstances it might have been a treat to hear, for the tone was also respectful, as if some greater power had deemed them as equals. It was meant to be a warm welcome, and not to be taken lightly.

“Come, heroes. Come to Ouroboros. You have been found worthy to keep the secret that-”

“Wait!” Red said, his right hand shooting out in panic, his head still held in his left. “That’s it, that is just it!”

The Voice faltered some as it tried to continue.

“You… you have been chosen, for tasks most urgent, to repair the links of time…”

“Been there!” Red barked. “Done that! Just now, actually. Can it wait?”

“These are most urgent tasks-”

“How urgent? Fixing time… it’s time! It can be fixed at any time, couldn’t it?”

“Uhm… well… the vote’s sorta split on that-”

Paladin, shaking his head, pulled himself in front of the shaking Djinni. “Look,” he countered, “does this have to be done now and by us? You have a city full of worthy heroes here.”

The Voice was silent for a moment, though Paladin could swear he heard some muttering and hushed conversation in the back of his mind. At last, the Voice returned.

“Very well,” The Voice boomed, refreshed yet with a touch of annoyance. “There are others, it seems, who will suffice-” and then, sarcastically “-we’ll try to catch you at a better time later.”

“Don’t call us, we’ll call you!” Red snapped.