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A.D.D. Theater 13 · 5:32am Feb 4th, 2018

This churned in my head until I had to get it out. It's pretty cheesy. No plans on doing anything more with it.

Son of a Son

The field of mud and blood below her churned. Her brother’s forces had pushed Sombra’s off the hill, but they would retake it soon if Twilight didn’t get help.

Her mind wandered as her magic collected another broken spear. She had no choice. She did have time, but it was counted in minutes. This spell was a curse, dark magic of the worst kind, but it was all she had.

Lives were on the line. Not just here, not just her’s or her brother’s. The western front was stagnant; a mill designed to grind up life. The eastern front would collapse if Sombra knew just how thin it really was.

Twilight turned her back to the field of carnage. An old oak tree had weathered seven battles for the hill it sat on. Three stallions had died leaning against its massive trunk.

A flick of her magic drove the spear into the tree. The twelve she’d driven in before it hummed when their final brother joined them.

“Son of a son,” Twilight spoke, her eyes going white.

John’s eyes darted across his opponent, shield and sword ready for the other fighter to make a mistake. It came soon enough: a wide swing exposed his shoulder. John rammed his shield’s edge into the man’s armpit, then sliced at his belly.

“Son of a son of a soldier.” She was the Dusk Hammer, sister to Celestia’s Anvil. She couldn’t reach Sombra with her magic, but she would summon something that could.

“Oopf... Hit!” the man called as he fell backwards.

“You okay?”

The man laughed. “I have no idea what the hell you did, but yea, I’m fine.”

John tucked his rattan sword under his arm, then held out a hand to help the man up.

Magic crackled around Twilight. The spears driven into the tree caught the gouts of power like lightning rods. “Born of the last one. Son of twelve generation’s battles fought and won.”

On market row, John stopped at an odd little vendor. Mostly odd in that he didn’t recognize it. He’d been going to events for years. The line of tents always held the same dozen or so faces, someone new was a real treat.

John waved at the tall, smiling man standing behind a table before peering around. It was what he called a bric-a-brac shop. The shelves were packed with little kitschy bottles bracelets and baubles. Though, it was admittedly a better variety than usual. The glass seemed hand blown, the jewelry solid, and the little things in between all had a whimsy that truly felt exotic.

“Son of a son... son of a son... son of a son of a soldier.” Prismatic magic arched from the tree’s branches, rendering the mighty oak, bit by bit, to ash. Above her black clouds opened to cerulean blue.

“Born of the last one. Destined never to draw blood.” On by one the spears lit into purple fire.

“Why hello, Sir John.” The vendor gave a formal bow.

A chill rang John’s spine at the sound of his own name.

“Hi.” John nodded back. You didn’t earn the Sir title without being seen. Strangers knowing his name wasn’t new to John, but something unsettled him.

“Can I help you find something?” the man asked, his smile doubling.

“I umm...”  John stared at the man. Some power kept him from turning away, and the longer John looked at the man, the stranger he became. His long hair didn’t move with either wind or gravity. His arms were too long, his smile to wide and the world seemed a little out of focus around him.

“Ah!” The man held up a finger in a eureka pose. “I know what a Dane like you needs!” Leaning impossibly far over the counter, the strange man plucked a necklace from the wall with one hand, while beckoning John to come closer with the other.

The helm grasped in his off hand demanded to be worn. The shield on his back and the rattan sword on his hip nagged at him. They demanded to be held, but so did the iridescent Mjölnir pendent the man was holding. John didn’t remember stepping forward, but he found himself face to face with the man, separated only but the dangling pendant.

The Mjölnir was carved of stone, but he’d never seen rock catch the light like this. A living rainbow danced across the intricate carving. “How much?” he asked, his eyes locked on the hypnotic stone.

“For you...” The man hummed. “A gift.” He held it a little closer to John.

John blinked. He reached for the Mjölnir, but paused. “You sure?” He tucked his helm between his knees, then pulled a silver ring from his finger. He’d made it himself at a workshop a few years back. “At least let me trad you this.” He offered the ring forward.

The man smiled. “You sure? Fair trade, even-stevens?”

“Fair trade,” John answered.

Bony fingers took the ring from John. The man pocketed the ring as he handed the pendant and cord over. “Put it on. Let’s see what it looks like on you.”

“Destiny changed, destiny rearrange. Ment to know peace; now the son of war is a soldier.”
The tree had see one thousand winters, but now it was a pile of black ash.

“Looking good!” The man cheered.

John smiled. The hammer quieted the uneasiness that had been telling him to leave.

“It’d be a good idea to put your helm on too.”

John obeyed.

The trees corps pulled at Twilight’s magic. A primal force ripped the power it wanted from her, draining the arcane light from Twilight’s eyes.

As the spell left Twilight, the pile of char erupted into light. She flinched away from the brightness, but couldn’t help but watch a rainbow grow from the earth to the cerulean hole in the sky.

The world exploded as John cinched his helmet. He yelped, cringing in expectation of pain, but none came as prismatic fire dissolved the shop.

“Good luck! You’ll need it.” the man said before vanishing into the technicolor inferno.

The instinct to run propelled John to out of the burning tent, but there was no tent to run out of. He was utterly alone, standing in a pile a charcoal on top of a muddy hill. Above him black clouds rushed to cover the blue sky, and cast the already bleak landscape into gloomy sepia tones.

The peace lasted only the seconds it took the storm clouds to reclaim the sky. Something moved beside him. He jumped away from the creature. Horse-like, it brayed at him, but he heard nothing. The creature pointed, and he turned to see a silent mass of the creatures clashing in battle. Uniformed armor divided them into two factions, but they held no lines or formations: instead spread into clumps of individual combat.

His ears popped. Chaos and screaming rushed into the silence.

“Please help us!” Twilight begged. “We have to keep the hill.” What had she summoned? She’d thought a minotaur at first, but it was something different.

The creature startled at her voice. “What!?” he asked, taking a step back.

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Comments ( 3 )

Well, that was an interesting way to write what is otherwise a fairly generic setup, although the “son of a son” thing made me think of the Jimmy Buffet song which totally threw off the tone of the story.

P.S. Do you have any estimate on when the next House of the Rising Sun chapter will be done?

I've set a personal goal of having it out late next week.

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