Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Recap: Thoki has tricked his half-brother Jormungandr into downing a drinking gin until he passed out. Thoki wants Jormungandr to give him an Lor passage to Egypt to look for the "City of the Sun": supposedly the location of ISFAT, the course of all chaos. Thoki intends to use this chaos to rule the world. Lor intends to find out whether "The Swedish Chef" is real.
“Head more to the south, you’re veering too far east,” said Thoki.
“Freaking hate you, wiener,” grumbled Jormungandr.
Thoki and Lor were seated along a long coil of Jormungandr’s snake form, just behind the head. Jorm was swimming in geriatric undulations and groaning every few yards. His serpent head, fearsome beyond all human imagining, had lost some of its hellfire. Dark circles surrounded the yellow eyes (which were now bloodshot and rather glassy) and his deadly breath, said to poison all who smelled it was even fouler than usual. Jormungandr was currently suffering from a Devine headache, of the sort that was usually caused by a cranial goddess crafting armor. The larger part of a bottle of Tanqueray and a thrashing about the head were to thank for that and Jorm had awoken from his gin-induced slumber to find himself captive in bonds made of heaviest-grade tow-cable.
That was when Thoki insisted that they be given transport to Alexandria… or else.
“I’d be tempted to drown you like a navy SEAL, you little bastard, if I wasn’t afraid of my head coming off,” Jormungandr mumbled through his metal bridle.
“Sorry I had to tie you up,” said Lor amiably.
“Nah, you’re alright, Lor. We should hang out sometime. In fact, we could hang out now, if you help me get rid of my stupid half-brother. Deal?” said the Serpent.
Lor debated this for a moment. “Could we come back for Thoki later?” asked Lor.
“Sure!” chuckled Jorm (and then winced through his hangover). “He might even still be alive if he’s a good swimmer.”
“No. I think we have some things to do first, Thoki and me.” Lor shook his head, which made Thoki sigh in relief. “Maybe afterwards.”
There was a pause before the World Serpent grasped at the last straw of hope. “Sure. If you guys can make it so that Fenrir doesn’t kill me, drinks are on me.”
“Don’t worry, Jorm,” said Thoki lightly. “I’ll tell Fenrir you were coerced.”
Jorm rolled his jaundiced eyes. “He’ll never believe me — I mean NEVER, EVER in a million years believe that you beat me up.”
“Thanks,” sniffed Thoki. “So what did Fenrir mean, the city of the sun?”
Jorm was carefully quiet and Thoki realized he was on his own this time. “City of the Sun… The Egyptian God of the sun was Ra, right?” Thoki was being rhetorical, but to his surprise, Lor spoke up.
“Well there was Atum, Atum-Ra, Aten-Ra, Horus, The Mnevis Bull, and Khepri the dung beetle… to name a few,” said the Jotun
For a while there was no sound save the lapping of waves against the huge scaly flanks and Jormungandr’s mouth breathing through his bridle.
“Alrighty,” said Thoki eventually. “So we have a lot of options. Any one of the cities of Ancient Egypt dedicated to those guys could be our target.”
“Oh, simple as that then,” said Lor nodding.
“No, it’s not simple,” said Thoki in mounting frustration. “We’re talking several thousand years of clashing pantheons changing and growing overtime, each dynasty issuing its own rules and names. God knows what those cities are called now that the old gods are crushed under this new Mohammedan- religion-thing.”
“’S’not new. The Islamic faith was developed almost fourteen-hundred years ago, ass,” muttered Jorm through the thick cables.
“That’s new to me,” said Thoki with a shrug.
“So, city of Ra… city of Aten-Ra. Maybe even Akenatum… crap. I don’t know any cities like that. I always assumed it would be at one of the big places… like Memphis, or Luxor or Cairo,” said Thoki. He kneeded his forehead with his fist in frustration as he stared at the black, churning water. The wind was picking up, and Thoki put up his sweatshirt hood and shivered. “Jorm, do you know any Egyptian city that would have been the city of the sun?”
Jorm laughed so hard he nearly choked on the cables binding him. “I got no idea, pipsqueak. I’m a giant snake as long as the Australian coastline. I don’t really sit around all day studying Greek History.”
“What DO you do all day?” asked Thoki in annoyance.
“Watch TV. I got Netflix live-streaming on my PS3 and I have most of the cable channels. I also play Frontierville a lot. Are you on Facebook, Lor? I need some more gas lamps to build my Ponderosa Lodge.”
Lor shrugged his shoulders. “I don’t understand the Internet. I go “on the line” and it says I have mail, but when I check our P.O. box at the post office it’s always empty.”
“Nah, nah, dude! You’re supposed to click on the little picture of a letter,” said Jormungandr.
“I did that once, but all I got were some pictures… very confusing pictures,” said Lor with a dazed look.
“Really,” said Jorm in the voice of one hoping for elaboration. Lor wasn’t forthcoming, however.
“I don’t’ know… it’s all Greek to me,” sighed Lor.
“Greek,” said Thoki sitting up suddenly. “Just a moment ago, Jorm. You said you didn’t sit around watching Greek history, when I was clearly talking about Egypt!”
“Um… No I didn’t?” said Jormungandr without much hope.
“You totally did! You know where we’re supposed to be going, don’t you!”
“Um… Uh…. No I don’t?” moaned Jorm. If snakes could sweat, Jormungandr would have looked like “sketchy witness number two” from an episode of Law and Order.
“Egypt was taken over by Alexander the Great starting the Ptolemic Empire! It makes sense! So… Greek god of the sun… Apollo… no. ‘Apollopolis’ just sounds too dumb for me to forget it… no…”
“Helios?” suggested Lor.
Thoki snapped his fingers. “Heliopolis.”
“Oh, God, I’m dead,” moaned Jormungandr. His body began to tremble and his scales seemed duller and colder.
“I’m right, aren’t I?” demanded Thoki.
“I can’t tell you,” said Jorm.
“AREN’T I?” insisted Thoki.
Jormungandr gave a sad little nod.
“Yes!” said Thoki, giving his brother’s bridle a vindictive little jerk. “Who’s the wiener now, ‘foot-long’?”
The serpent said nothing, but his lethargic pace slowed to nearly glacial speed as he edged closer to certain peril.
Monday, April 18, 2011
I purposefully decided not to write out the details of Thoki and Eris's reunion. Recent conversation with @WerewolfMike, @Nemone7 and @notmoro however encouraged me to write and post it as an excerpt for those who were curious. The events go back to when Thoki was running with Eris down the streets of Bastia from the other Tricksters.
They ran until they felt certain that the patter of pursuing footsteps had disappeared entirely. It seemed that Eris had done the job. The Tricksters were all too busy fighting amongst themselves to give more than a half-hearted chase.
“So… what now?” asked Thoki, out of breath.
Without answering, Eris threw him backwards against the brick wall of a menswear boutique.
“OW! HEY!” groaned Thoki! “What was that for? What’re..?”
Thoki was halted in his protests by Eris jumping on his hips and attacking his mouth in a frantic kiss.
“Oh,” he said, realization dawning.
Her teeth bit into his lips, making him wince, but the moment her searching tongue ran along his jawline, he instantly reacted. He bound his slight arms around her, twisting her leather jacket in his hands as he returned fire with a passionate kiss of his own. Their ragged breaths mingled as she clung tightly to him, her thighs hugging his waist as she slid up and down. Thoki’s heart was pounding now as he feverishly moved in rhythm to collide with her. He felt her breasts mash against his chest with each push. His hand found its way to her bare thigh and followed it under her skirt. Eris unzipped his sweatshirt, and tore the hem of his cheap shirt to shreds. She reached under it, her soft fingers gliding over his smooth bare chest before teasing his nipples into hard points. His breath came in faster grunting gasps as she excited and baited him. He wanted to get into her so badly it hurt him and he shook and sweat in his growing hunger.
It was when she climbed off and started unbuttoning his jeans that his brain slammed on the breaks.
“Whoa-whoa-WHOA! Hang on,” he said suddenly. “We’re doing this here? In the streets?”
“It’s raining, nobody’s out here,” she said breathlessly.
“But people are watching us through the windows,” said Thoki, uncertainly, trying to shoo her hands away from his fly. “There’s a guy over there at the tie store who keeps staring at us.”
“Let him. He should get an eyeful in a minute,” said Eris with a sly grin.
Thoki didn’t feel like returning it. “Besides, this wall is filthy and the bricks are rough… and it’s kind of painful. Can’t we get a room in some hote—” He didn’t get a chance to finish as Eris managed finally to undo his pants and slide them down just enough. With far too much ease, she remounted and made Thoki very aware that she wasn’t wearing a thing under her tight leather mini.
“Uh! Maybe we should…” he managed in a strange high voice before all synopses in his brain ceased firing and made him incapable of speech. He was only aware of sensations now. He smelled the perfume in her hair and the leather of her jacket. He heard her gasp and moan as she deftly led his hand under her thin tee-shirt to her breast. He could taste the salty sweat of her neck and the rain rolling off it along with the blood on his lips from her aggressive foreplay. Her voice cried out louder and louder, each time with more urgency. His voice joined hers in the unnaturally high shrieks of a man trying to keep his focus as well as his balance. The cold rain made him shiver and her burning warmth made him shudder as he fought to hold on. If people were still staring at them, he was aware of none of them. There was only this.
Eris took this opportunity to tease him, pulling away when he lunged forward and then waiting for his pants of frustration before finally gratifying him, only to pull away again. He was scarcely aware of what words were tumbling out of his mouth, it was a nonsensical babble of entreaties, exclamations, and curses as he ran the gamut of every emotion known to man in 3 seconds, and then ran them again, over and over. Twice he almost lost his footing as she drove him crazy with pain and ecstasy.
After a long loud squeal from Eris, Thoki felt safe enough in sprinting for the finish line. Spinning around, until Eris’s back faced the wall, he summoned the untapped reserve of animal energy that was driving him. His muscles burned with the pace and his thighs ached from supporting her weight. His head received a few knocks from the wall as well, but then…oblivion. He saw purple stars explode as his back suddenly arched and he loosed a feral scream into the air just as a thunderbolt shook the sleepy island and made the air smell of burning tin.
There was no post-coital cigarette. There was no obligatory 10 minute cuddle and “what are you thinking about” conversation. There wasn’t a hot shower — Hell, there wasn’t even anything even to lie down on. There was only the same unforgiving wall, which he leaned against with all his weight, while Eris hung on for a few victory laps. It was when they heard the police sirens, that Eris, with as much poise as a queen, collected herself and grabbed Thoki by the hand, pulling him into a run towards a black Mercedes parked along the street.
He stumbled raggedly behind her while doing up his jeans, wishing he could go back in time to six minutes ago. If he’d gone back ten minutes ago, he could tell himself to get a hotel room. There was generally no running with hotel rooms… that is until they discovered your credit card was a stolen one.
He climbed into the passenger seat in a daze. A realization dawned that it had been fantastic. In his severely limited experience, it had blown every other time away without question (barring one). But amidst the glow of having tasted that black starry oblivion and coming back, was the pain of loss. It was over. Knowing Eris, she would disappear soon, and he would only have the memory of that one frantic screw to visit in his mind on lonely nights. The bitterness made him tear up, and he testily hid his eyes under his hood while he fought against crying. But despite all of that, the loss, the fatigue and the utter confusion, there was a smile on Thoki’s face and it didn’t feel like leaving.
You can find other naughty excerpts at @Nemone7's Blog and at @WerewolfMike's Blog.
You can find other naughty excerpts at @Nemone7's Blog and at @WerewolfMike's Blog.