lunes, 8 de junio de 2009

Part 15: Do you?

"What? No!" Leo yelled, letting go of Alice. He took a few steps forward until the bulk of his body separated Alice from the priest. The priest replied in a strange language, and they both got into a heated argument. Alice stared at the both of them, getting angrier by the minute. Echoes of a car crash she hadn't witnessed haunted her mind, and the only coherent thought that could form in her head was 'I'm going to lose my mother, too'.

The priest won the argument. Leo, furious, retreated to the living room and Alice heard him drop on the couch like a dead weigh, making the springs creak under the weight. She looked at the priest, with his exotic attire and hungry eyes, and felt fright creep through her stomach.

"I'm sorry, dear," he said. "I was just excited about your proposal. As a matter of fact, we were going to talk to the gods tomorrow, but Leo didn't want me to tell you that." The alarms went off in Alice's head, and she took a couple of steps to the side, so she was within eyeshot of the living room couch.

"Why would you?" she asked.

"Because you seem enthusiast about this," the priest said, as a cloud came over his eyes. He tried to conceal it and looked at the altar. Dust seemed to settle in every single crease that formed on his neck as he turned his head. For a moment, he seemed to be a hundred years old. "It is really hard to find people who take the old gods seriously... who are willing to listen to them..."The age became even more apparent as he continued speaking, and Alice almost felt sorry for him. "How do you preach truth in a world where a million people are trying to preach what they believe is the real truth? How do you convince people, even with the most sound proof, when all of them only regard you either as a joke, or a murderer?"

"So..." Alice couldn't think of anything to say, so she just let the word hang in the air, becoming heavy in its uselessness. She was starting to regret her decision.

"It will be tomorrow, it is the best moment. At 8 p.m. You may come if you like. I'll understand if you don't." Alice nodded.

"Right."She left the priest standing there, still staring at the altar, and ran to the entrance door. All she could think about was getting herself out of that place for good. The strange spell cast on her by the strange ceremony and disappearance of the tzitzimime already faded from her mind, and she already regretted the whole episode.

"So... are you going to come?" Leo's voice drifted at her as she put her hand on the doorknob.

"I thought you didn't want me to come."

"I don't." Alice let out a small smile.

"Then I'll certainly be here."

"Alice... you don't know what you're doing." Alice remembered the horrible creature thrashing around in its cage, and cringed.

"Do you?" She exited the apartment amidst the thick silence.

miércoles, 3 de junio de 2009

Part 14: Heralds of Doom

"Where is it?" Alice asked, pressing herself against the wall and looking around the room, trying to catch a glimpse of the lightning-fast creature. The priest walked up to her and put his hands in her arms.

"Don't worry," he said. "It has been vanished out of existance."

"So my mom will be okay?"

"I don't know. As long as she keeps the amulet with her, she'll be fine. But the power of the amulet wanes over time."

"So what can I do to save her?" Alice could feel the tears stinging the back of her eyes. She'd never be able to handle the loss of another loved one.

"Save her? I don't think you're quite getting the big picture here," the priest said. "The fate of the whole world is hanging on a thread. After what you just saw, are you willing to listen?"

"... Yes."

"According to Aztec mythology, every fifty years a Chosen One is born. He who has been chosen carries the flame of the gods in his heart, and needs to be sacrificed so his blood can nourish the sun. Otherwise, the sun will wither and die, taking the world with it. The tzitzimime are heralds of doom, their arrival signals that the sun is about to wither, and we haven't found The Chosen One."

"We believe he might not have been born at all," one of the other men in the room said. "Maybe it is a sign, that the world is supposed to end now." Alice stared at the ma, trying to figure him out.

"Leave the room, both of you." The two men obeyed the priest's order and disappeared behind a door Alice hadn't noticed before. She could feel her breath catching in her lungs, fear keeping it inside. Her head started spinning and the colors on the room started dancing around her. Strong arms wrapped around her shoulders, and she could only faintly hear what the priest and Leo were saying.


"She really insisted."


"I know, I did .... "

" ... then?"

"I don't know."

Alice made a huge effort to drag herself back to life and looked at Leo, who still held her from falling to the ground.

"I'm okay," she said. Her head still spun "I... I wish to talk to the Gods." She almost didn't recognize her voice uttering words so unknown to her. She sensed a sudden tense movement in Leo's arms, and the priest looked surprised.

"I can arrange that," the priest said. The look on his face had turned almost hungry.