This is the 28th in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.
Olympian’s Descent, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 29th December 2012
Word count: 998
Theme: gods, myths, mystery, murder, politics
“So, you think someone is out to get us?” Zee asked his son Percy.
Percy slid into the comfy sofa in his father’s study, “I don’t know. Mortals couldn’t have discovered us, yet two of us are dead already.”
“Not one of the family, though” Zee asked concerned.
“Family or not, they were immortals. They descended right along with us,” Percy pointed out.
“They were minor immortals, and they died in accidents,” Zee said, “You know the rules of our descent, we won’t age, but we can die in every other way. That was the price we paid. I see nothing to be alarmed about, I’ll just add them to the family flier, those that knew them can mourn them.”
“Two accidents in one week? The first deaths in nearly two millennia?” Percy asked.
“Out of nearly fifteen hundred immortals, that’s a good run,” Zee said.
“I’m not going to drop it father,” the younger immortal said.
“Well look into it, but don’t go seeing doom and gloom Perseus, we’ve got it good since our retirement. We don’t need to cause a panic,” Zee instructed, “Now go on, I’ve to convene the twelve.”
“Will you mention my concerns?” Percy asked.
“Not right now. If you bring me something that actually gives credence to your theory, I’ll let you tell them yourself,” Zee said.
Not long after Percy had left, Zee walked over to his mantle place, he pulled down the Horn of Summoning, he put it to his lips and blew.
An hour later, in the dining room the twelve mightiest immortals were busy talking, and eating snacks.
“We all know why we’re here today,” Zee said standing up, once he was sure everyone had had something to eat and drink, “Nike has petitioned to join the twelve.”
“Well we all know that’s nonsense,” Harry said putting down his cup of tea, “I know she’s one of your generation, but she worked for me.”
“Harry, dear boy, you weren’t the first God of War,” Zee said, “However you are right, she was never deemed powerful enough to sit at the head of Olympus. However as she points out, times have changed. More than most Gods, she is celebrated everywhere now. That brings a lot of power.”
“I vote no,” Hera said lazily.
“You would, hag,” Nike said walking through the door.
“What do you think you’re doing at this meeting?” Zee demanded. “I was representing your case as I promised you I would.”
“Oh, Zeus you old goat, we all know how capricious you are. I had to make sure, plus there’s something else you need to consider before deciding,” Nike said as she sat on the table.
“Husband, darling,” Hera said rising, “Smite her, or I will, and I’ll damn well make sure she stays smited.”
“That’s no way to talk to your sister now is it?” Nike said admiring her hand.
“We’ve a long history of doing two things with family, fucking them, or killing them. Since you betrayed us, I’m leaning towards the latter,” Hera said.
“Here, here,” Apollo said.
“There will be no more killing,” Zee said banging his fast upon the table.
“Oh? That’s a shame, I was just getting started,” Nike said.
Zeus felt the hairs on the back of his neck rise. Nike, his sister, born of the older gods, and Titans like himself was powerful in her own right, but restricted to celebrating victory, not bringing it. Yet Perseus’ words rang in the back of his mind.
“So,” Zee said calmly, “It was you then?”
“Of course,” Nike said, “New found powers and all that.”
“I don’t know what you’re on about Nike, but remember, just as everyone here does, that you betrayed us in our hour of need. We had to descend because you abandoned your duties,” Hera said.
“Ladies, calm down,” Zee said firmly. “Now, Nike I want you to eplain yourself right now. I am still Zeus, I am still the leader of this twelve, and these fifteen hundreds immortals that now reside on Earth. I can smite you very easily, and very thoroughly, and I’ve half a mind to.”
“But you believe in these human laws, blah blah blah,” Nike said, “Okay, you want me to spell it out? Good, let’s not beat around the bush. I’m more powerful than I’ve ever been,” Nike said, “And I can smite immortals with ease. Either you let me into council, or I start smite your families. And a fair few mortals for extra measure.”
“Smite me then,” Hera said her eyes narrow.
“Come now, sister I wouldn’t want to do that,” Nike said, “I just want to be included. Besides we both know I’d struggle to smite any of our generation, just as much as you would, or your husband.”
Zee resisted the urge to speak up. Nike was a dangerous opponent, Goddess of Victory, it would be a pure power battle for the sky god.
“I just want what is rightfully mine,” Nike said. “If I have to take it I will. These humans marketing, and events have giving me an abundance of definition. Maybe I have my own little group that I’ve empowered with some of that definition ready to strike if they don’t hear from me.”
“Just like the good old days,” Harry said appreciatively.
Then, Percy kicked the door open, he was carrying a lamp. “Aya Kallah Sinto Repordo!” he shouted, “Nike!” was second.
Nike was just turning round, her glowing hand raised when she was sucked bodily into the bottle’s spout.
“Trust the Arabs to have just the tool,” Percy said.
“How’d you know?” Zee asked.
“I didn’t know who, but I took a punt at when,” Percy said.
“Cometh the hour, cometh the God,” Hera said. “Thank you Percy, that hussy needed shutting up.”
Zee looked around, “These are dark days, if we wish to stay in control, we need to find out which other Gods are suddenly gaining power and why.”