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Apophis

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There were screams bellowing through the night, filling the dark city with a sense of urgency, some of them coming closer and then going off in some unseen direction once more. Finding him was hard and could only be accomplished by someone who truly knew how to look for him. Being a being of pure darkness was something he hated, but he couldn’t deny that it had its advantages.

Of course, these advantages were futile when it came to other gods… Supernatural beings just had a knack for finding each other. Meaning that Thoth and his dumb son were bound to run across him.

There was a small thud in his chest, filling his body with a wave of almost stinging warmth. She was angry at him, for calling her friend dumb.
“Sorry,” he muttered into the darkness, running his hand over his sternum and pressing softly, massaging the spot with his knuckles.

He was hiding in an alley, dark as they come, and listened for footsteps approaching him. The voices from before were now distant, but other, closer ones made him worry. One of those sounded a lot like the little Priest. No doubt he’d deliver the finishing blow as soon as he found him, then doing… something to his Ka to prevent him from rebirthing.

Accomplishing something neither human nor god had managed to do in the past. He was angry enough to do so, for sure.

The warmth returned, kinder this time. More careful, caressing his very soul with softly licking flames. Soothing him, telling him that Im could be reasoned with.
“You’re not meant to be a bad guy,” it told him with a hushed tone, barely comprehensible even for him. Further away than it had been a few hours ago.

She was growing weaker.

It wasn’t by much, but to him, it was obvious. He knew her flame - kind, compassionate as it was - would be extinguished by his darkness sooner or later. It was his own downfall - even if he didn’t want to hurt people, he still did. And her… He didn’t want to hurt her anymore.

He’d wanted to in the beginning, to spite Thoth and his adorable (he couldn’t help but feel happiness at her flames bouncing slightly) son, but… She didn’t fight him. She didn’t succumb either. She just accepted him, illuminating him in an all overpowering curtain of sweet twilight that made his heart burst.

He hadn’t felt that much light within him in centuries.

He wanted to scream at her to stop, to just look at him and dare explain how she could accept him and his never ending endeavor of revenge, but she stopped him before he could even open his mouth. The words “hurts”, “lonely”, “desperate” and several more flashed before his eyes like a revelation. He hesitated in his attacks, and tears trickled down his face as he went to fight against Thoth.

He hated knowing that she made him feel less broken. He didn’t need anybody.

The flame lashed out again, making him openly wince.
“I’m sorry,” he mumbled once again, covering the spot with both hands as if he could calm her. Pathetic, when it was her that was calming him.

A selfish, more pronounced part of him didn’t want to let her go, ever again. His mind felt clearer than it had in years, more like it used to before the world was doused in sunlight. There were other thoughts than constant self hatred and anger crossing his thoughts, and he welcomed them with a blessed sigh. The screams of his brain had stopped, the mocking memories of all the blame the villagers had put on him vanished to a dim thought somewhere far away. All he could do was bask in the love and acceptance of another being.

Well, wasn’t that ironic. Just like other people basked in the sun, he basked in the glory of only one human being. And he loved it so much that panic crossed his mind whenever he thought about the inevitable.

He would have to give her up. One way or another, she would vanish from his body - either die in his darkness, or leave to live a happy and fulfilling life at the side of her friends.

His mind was set to returning her. He owed her that much, for giving him a joy he had long forgotten. He refused to be her demise, even if it would kill him inside.

The problem was: Her body was taken. Another person’s soul resided within it, making him unable to return her beautiful light to its origin (and oh, the little spark in his chest was something new. Apparently, she liked compliments).

She’d die as soon as she left his body. She’d already be dead if he was anything but a god. What a weird blessing in disguise. He could handle her soul longer than anyone else without her taking any huge damage. However, this not being her body, her home, meant she’d die like any other soul without a place to return to. His power was just putting off the evil hour.

Perhaps, creating something like a golem would’ve been a solution. But a) he wasn’t that capable in creating things rather than destroying them and b) for a golem he’d have to have some remains. Since the vessel was still living and breathing, that wasn’t an option.

He pressed his palms against his sternum and sent her a silent wave of apology. She returned with an upbeat little burst, telling him it was ok. They’d manage.

Yeah… Until Thoth and the rest got to him, killed him and returned her to her body, they’d have to manage. She was stuck with him, until then.

He couldn’t help but hate the little, traitorous feeling inside his heart that leapt with joy at the thought of her staying a little longer. She would die if she didn’t return, but… but he’d rather not let her go.

“I’m so sorry,” he mumbled with tears in his eyes, gripping the bottom of his cowl, bunching it up in the process and wrapping himself protectively around the source of the flames. In return, they were surging through his whole body and covering him like a blanket. A feeling, fickle and tiny compared to the surge, whispered that he wasn’t at fault. He’d saved her, in the end, and they’d find a solution that would make him happy, too.

But that wasn’t what he was sorry for.