Birth of a New King
The sound of thunder shook the soaked jungle leaves. A torrential rain had begun to fall upon the battlefield. At its center, two figures could be seen. One, a young man with brown skin, his head tilted toward the heavens. His breathing was labored and his body felt as if it would break at the slightest provocation. The other was an older soul, now lying down on the forest floor with a spear, as dark as the night, piercing his chest. Despite his morbid condition he smiled, the light surrounding him slowly fading with each breath he took.
“To think that thou wouldst defeat me, how utterly absurd” coughed the man on the floor. “But it appears that mine time now is at an end, so pray tell me, how does victory feel?”
The young man did not respond. There was only one thing he felt. Emptiness.
Yet the man understood simply with one look. “Thou hast sacrificed much and while thou art the victor, the damage has already been done. What will thou doest human? Answer me.” ordered the man. He wore a crown made of colorful blue and green feathers and a white tunic with gold etched rectangular patterns on it making him look like a type of priest.
“Even as you lay dying, you still retain your prideful airs” whispered the young man.
“Hmph! Human, thou shouldst learn this well. It is the nature of us, Heretic Gods; we innately understand your place in comparison to ours.” He smiled and added “and yet to think thou would triumph over me jajajaja!”
“What’s so funny?” growled the young man.
“It defies all logic. It upsets the natural laws of the world and yet it here we are. Now tell me Child of Man, what will you do?” questioned the Heretic God.
The young man looked down at the Heretic God and replied “I have already given my life force and I have stopped your rampage. I have no reason to do or ponder anything else.”
This was the truth. The black spear had drained him of all of his life in exchange for being able to harm the god. His strength rapidly dissipating, he felt that he would collapse any minute.
The Heretic God’s light slowly started to fade and he remarked “Truly a fool thou art. Thou hast attained victory against a god! A feat very few can admit to.”
The young man closed his eyes and with a furrowed brow lowered his head. “I feel no triumph, only failure.”
With that the young man fell to his knees. His body failing him, he could only kneel in pain.
The god sighed. “Such recklessness you’ve shown using that accursed spear without hesitation. Soon thou will perish human. It appears we both shall meet our end here.”
The young man clenched his fists. “No…I can’t let it end here.” Using only his will, he forced himself to stand up on his shaking legs. “I won’t let it end. There’s something I still need to live for.”
Upon seeing this, the god smiled warmly. He remembered, moments from death, what he had forgotten. The will of his beloved humans.
As another light began to manifest in front of the young man, the old god spoke. “Humans. The weakest of creatures yet, the strongest as well. It is only in moments of true difficulty that they surpass any limits. Be the sun. Give life to those around thou. Be what I once was. “
With that the young man thus passed out.
“Hey sleepy head! Wake up!” a voice spoke out in the distance.
“What is this feeling?” thought the young man. He felt like he was floating in a sea of nothingness. It felt calm. He could no longer feel the rain or hear the thunder. He could only hear this one voice.
“Hey! Come on! You can sleep all you want later!” The voice whined. “Hmmm…this usually wakes them up.”
“*Poke* Wake up! *Poke* Come on! *Poke* We need to talk! *Poke*”
The young man opened up his eyes and saw a young lady with purple hair tied in tails that fell over her pointed ears. She wore a white regal dress. Her green eyes stood blinking over him.
The young man then spoke, “Um…who are you? And could you stop poking my cheeks together please?”
“Well, I had to resort to such crude methods due to someone not waking up.” The young lady retorted folding her arms.
“Anyways….Hello! My name is Pandora, the All-Giving Woman.” She spouted out happily.
“Pandora…the one from the Greek myths?” the young man softly replied.
“Yeps! That’s me! But you can call me mama.” the woman smiled. “But more importantly, congratulations! You have successfully slain a god!”
Just then his memories of the battle came flooding back to him and he quickly sat up.
“So that…actually happened? I thought it was a dream.”
“Nope silly! You actually did what few mortals could ever do.” Pandora replied.
“But then, what now? Do I get judged a heretic or something?” He looked around wondering if there was a place he would be tried for his what? His crime? His blasphemy? He didn’t know what to call it.
“No no no. On the contrary, you get rewarded.” Pandora replied.
“Rewarded? For slaying a god?” the young man replied in disbelief.
“Exactly! You will be reborn! You will be a Campione.”
“A Campione? A champion?” the young man added in confusion.
“Yes! A Campione is an individual who has successfully slain a god and has usurped their authorities.” Pandora explained.
The young man scratched his head. “Authorities? I don’t understand.”
“Authorities are the powers that gods hold that is a part of their identity. Thus they hold dominion over various forces in the mortal realm such as luck, speed, animals, transformations, aspects of nature and all other goodies.”
The young man began to slowly understand. “So what authorities did I get?”
“Usually there is a limit of one authority per god slain but in your case you gained five. They have some restrictions or great costs for using them though.”
A series of stone plated circles with various symbols etched onto their surface appeared before the young man.
“Why so many?” The young man asked, “It’s not like…”
At this he paused. He remembered the fight but now remembered what led up to it. At this he spoke with a soft quiver in his voice. “You said I could call you Mama right?”
“Of course! You’re always wel…” Before she could finished, he buried his head in her shoulder and he stifled a cry.
As Pandora began stroking his head, she added, “There, there, my child. You’ve been through so much. Take all the time you need.”