This is the 49th in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.
Connor, God Hunter by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 19th January 2012
Word count: 999
Theme: gods, fantasy, battles, vengeance, hunter, anti-hero
Connor used a cloud bank to gain some elevation as he ran along the holy plain. A god was flying ahead of him, in a race for life it looked like the god was winning. Connor though was not without power himself, how else could he have ascended to Ashatair, the home of the Gods? How else could he have taken down four other gods.
Connor looked like any other young man, tall, skinny, brash, and fond of being in the sun. However, despite his appearances he was nearer one hundred than twenty years old. An halfling of halflings,with powers hitherto unheard of.
Power, it’s why he was climbing up a cloud bank instead of chasing the fleeing god on the flat where he would be able to keep him insight. Connor drew his power from the sun, bathed in it’s light his power was furious, and as he broke through the clouds into clear skies, it washed over him, giving a boost. Connor ran for a few paces, until he felt he’d absorbed enough, and then he dived off the bank, and glided back down to the flat, staying above it and soaring until the god was in sight.
The god was Swantus, supposedly of a minor family who helped farmers, and herders. Swantus, and his family had defected to the Witliori (a cabal of Ashatair Gods), during the Witliori’s attempted coup against the Mother, the matriarch of all the Ashatair Gods. The Mother was not feeling forgiving, or forgetful about the affair, and there was a death sentence on every member of the Witliori, for the vengeance of all her slain children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, and her husband the wandering moon. The Witliori had a choice, descend to earth for good and live a mortal life, or be hunted until death among the Ashatair. Some choose to leave for mortal lives, many didn’t. Many hoped they would be forgiven in time, and doubted anyone else would dare deplete the ranks of the gods.
The laws against Gods killing Gods were very strict, so the Mother descended to Earth and sought out the most promising offshoots from her family. Connor was one of those, he was brought bodily, (mortals are usually only permitted in spirit), into the realm of the Ashatair, the great cloud city, and lands around it. The other halflings were bombarded with sacred and mythical weapons, and armour. Connor chose only a dagger, and plain non-magical leather protection. In the lands of the Ashatair, the Gods ruled supreme, their powers were unimaginable to mortals, and their deaths inconceivable. Even a God cut off from the food and drinks of the other gods would be a powerful foe.
Connor used the energy he was holding to fly faster, gaining on the fleeing god very slowly. The boys power was waning, and just when it looked like the hunt was up, Swantus made a fatal flaw. He left the cover of the clouds above, and was running along a cloud field in full view of the sun. Connor gambled and gave it everything to make up the distance.
He was rewarded by recharging rays of sunlight, which gave him another burst of speed.
Swantus sensing his hunter was close, choose to turn and face the harasser rather than run further and be taken from behind.
Connor drew up short, and stood on the cloud field facing Swantus, the knife in his hand, his other fist was clenched.
“I will not be killed by some pathetic mortal,” Swantus called out, drawing a glowing green sword, “Go back to Mother and tell her, that this is not over, do you hear me?”
“Mother sent me,” Connor said, edging forward looking for a flinch from Swantus, there was none.
“I know Mother sent you fool,” Swantus said angrily.
“She wants you dead most of all,” Connor said, trying discretely slide left a bit, and cursing the scattering of cloud in his wake.
“I did not kill her pathetic husband,” the god said,”She must be made to see that.”
“Oh she does, she told me herself she would never accuse her beloved nephew of something so underhanded, and evil. No, she accuses you of leaving the doors unguarded, and letting the bastards in.For that your sentence is death, now there’s still time to choose, fall or be pushed,” the halfling brandished the knife.
“Too Sloff with you,” Swantus shouted and charged the halfling with his eerie green glowing sword.
Connor side stepped, and then absorbed a fireball Swantus had aimed at him on the turn. Fully charged by the sun, his clothes weren’t even singed.
Swantus charged again, the growing green sword became red with flame, and stretched out away, as he swung it, it behaved more as a whip. Connor took a blow across the chest, his armour this time was burnt, and there was a red welt.
“Think you’re powerful enough to take on a God? One as old as I am?” the God scoffed, “Not on your best day.”
The whip began to glow again, turning blue, Swantus charged forward again as the weapon became a hammer. Connor didn’t move at first, and then suddenly he reached out with his free hand, caught the hammer mid-swing, and wrenched it from the God’s hand, then as he momentum brought his body round he struck out with the dagger. The dagger easily penetrated the god’s throat.
Swantus stopped shocked at both incidents, his godly brain not able to deal with the harm being caused him by a mortal. Connor didn’t wait to understand, he tackled the god to the ground, and struck repeatedly at the neck.
The doors to the Ashatair throne swung open, and Connor walked int carrying the severed head of Swantus.
“As requested, ma’am,” he said bowing.
“You continue to impress God hunter,” Mother said, “You will be rewarded for this, my God of Vengeance.”