Tuesday, September 27, 2011

22: How 'Bout Them Apples?

Thoki’s inched towards Hermes until his hand was right under the Greek’s menacing shadow. From there on, Thoki shut his eyes tightly and held his breath. His hand made contact with warm flesh but something was wrong. This didn’t seem like Hermes’s hand. It was too… small. He also heard sounds of a struggle which made his eyes open again. Looking down at his hand he saw it clasped in a small slender woman’s hand. Not even Hermes could be that effeminate if he tried so Thoki decided it must belong to a woman.  He followed the hand up a white arm which was floating in midair.

Thoki screamed and let go of the hand, eyeing the floating arm in horror. Slowly the arm’s owner melted into sight amidst a chorus of laughter.

                “ERIS!” shouted Thoki in delight.

                “You should have seen the look on your face,” Eris screamed mirthfully. She was now dressed like private-school jailbait in a tiny pleated plaid skirt, white blouse and necktie.

                Thoki was relieved to see her but was holding his head as though it would explode. “I’m so sick of these deus ex machina! Can’t anyone show up sooner than ‘in the nick of time’? I’m going to have a heart attack.”

                “Aw, you’re so cute when you do the pouty face!” cooed Eris, grinning.

                “What’s going on with ‘the Spanakopita Brothers’ over there?” asked Thoki grinning.

                “They’re fighting over another of my golden lovelies. Even the gods themselves can’t resist ‘em,” said Eris. She waved her golden ipod at Thoki and he watched Hermes and Apollo wrestling on the floor like teenagers.  Currently Apollo had a hold of an identical golden MP3 player and Hermes was trying to pry his fingers off it.

                “Cow theif!” shouted Apollo, clocking Hermes on the head.

                “Ass-grabber!” Hermes retaliated, jumping on his brother’s chest.

                “Liar!”

                “Nympho!”

                “Goat-father!”

                “Tree-fucker!”

                “Wow, they really want that iPod,” said Thoki watching them with the clinical air of an interested gambler.

                “Well not everyone sees my golden iPods as iPods. It usually shows up as whatever the person really wants,” said Eris.

                “What do Apollo and Hermes see?”

                “iPods. When I say ‘not everyone’ I meant, ‘almost everyone’. It’s funny. People really like iPods.”

                “So, shall we go?” asked Thoki with a Grin.

                “Yeah, get your giant and your horse and let’s go.”

                “Brother.”

                “Huh?” asked Eris.

                “The horse— he’s my brother.”

                “The snake or the wolf?” asked Eris eyeing the octopedal grey stallion nervously.

                “No he’s my younger brother, the one we weren’t allowed to talk about. He was the black sheep, well white sheep, more like.”

                “He’s a horse.”

                “Yeah?”

                “He’s not a sheep.”

                Thoki shook his head like he was trying to get water out of his ears. Apparently Eris was on another hyper up-swing. Since the Greek brothers were now in a slapping match a sudden thought occurred to him.

                “I don’t suppose we could… uh…” his eyes shifted towards the empty kitchen. “Y’know. Just a quick one before we leave?”

                “What, NOW? Boy, you really know how to sweet-talk a lady, dontcha half-pint,” said Eris with a hard stare.

                Thoki looked at his shoes.  “Yeah, I guess we’re in a rush.”

                “Uh, YA THINK?” said Eris, slapping her head and rolling her eyes.  Men!” she grunted

                Thoki tried to fight the blush attacking his face as he ran to the couch and tried to rouse Lor.

                “Hey, buddy. We got to get out of here. I need you to get up, ‘kay?”

                Lor’s crusted eyes slowly opened and he turned a yellow eye towards Thoki. “I think I’ll stay here just the same, thank you.”

                Thoki fought the roiling pit opening up in his stomach. “C’mon, this is serious. I really need you to try, alright?”

                Lor’s baleful stare didn’t flicker as he pondered this. “I understand, Thoki. You should go while you still can. I’ll manage well enough.”

                Lor had never lied to Thoki— he didn’t have the imagination for it— but something about his last sentence made Thoki think Lor wasn’t being entirely honest with him.

                “Thoki! Hey Thoki!” came Eris’s voice behind him, sounding amused. Thoki ignored her.

                “Lor, you’ve got to try, buddy,” said Thoki with a shaking voice. “It’s just until we get downstairs and then we’ll hail a cab or something… alright?”

                “Hey, Thoki! Thoki!” came Eris again.

                “No thanks, Thoki. You have fun looking for that chaos thing. I hope you find whatever it was,” said Lor with a half a smile.

                “Thoki! Look! Look, Thoki! Thoki!” Eris persisted cheerfully.

                “Lor, you can’t give up on me! Why do you think I had to rescue you and take care of you? I can’t do this without you, buddy. Please. Don’t give up yet.”

                “Thoki! Thoki! Thoki! Look, Thoki! Look!”

                “You really want me to come?” asked Lor.

                Thoki! Hey! Look! Look, Thoki! Thoki!”

                “Yes— WOULD YOU SHUT UP ALREADY, ERIS? WHAT IS IT???” shouted Thoki, whipping around to face her.

                Eris was using her magic to appear like a sprite made of pixels on the dead Television screen in the corner.

                “Look! I’m a Deus Ex Machina! Get it? I’m a god and I’m in a Machine!” she chirped.

                “Hilarious,” said Thoki icily.

                “So you guys done with your little sissy drama yet, or should I come back later?” said Eris.

                “He can’t move, Eris,” sighed Thoki. We can’t get him downstairs.

                “Who said we were going downstairs?” said Eris. “I can take us with my powers.”

                “You can?” shouted Thoki.

                “Hellooooo? Goddess?”

                “Why didn’t you just say so— and don’t say because I never asked because I feel like hitting something!”

                Eris stared at him without moving.

                “Well?”

                “You said not to say it,” said Eris.

                Thoki’s eyes suddenly widened to the size of ping-pong balls as a thought occurred to him. “You’re the goddess of dischord!”

                “Yes. How d’you do,” said Eris, bemused.

                “YOU’RE AN AGENT OF CHAOS!!” screamed Thoki.

                “Took you long enough,” said Eris with a wry smile. She snapped her fingers and there was a flash of light with the smell of burning ozone. Hermes and Apollo, were knocked out of their frenzied tussle to see the room suddenly devoid of one former demi-god, one giant, and one 8-legged horse.

                “What just happened?” asked Hermes rubbing his head. There were a few large lumps on it, and his nose felt broken again. He looked over at his brother who was rubbing his jaw and blinking through a black eye.

                “I dunno,” said Apollo using his rod to heal a broken finger.

                Hermes’s eyes darted around the room and landed on the golden iPod near Apollo’s knee.

                He spat out a tooth before spitting out the name, “ERIS!”

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