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* Alazul *(illustrated ficlet)

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It’s not the first time Jason was trapped in a fisher’s net, but it might as well be the last.

 

To his credit, Jason fought hard and well. He’s no ordinary mer - strong, determined, and fearless. He ventured near the fishing boats where no other merfolks dared to go; he wrecked fishing nets, freed the fishers’ catches, and sank boats whenever he could. And Jason was no stranger to deaths either, having caused a fair amount of those himself. He was a local legend, death itself hiding under the surface of the salty waters with a bright red tail and green eyes that stared up beneath the waves. It took more than just a few fishing boats and nets to hold him down. The men knew better than to come alone - they had organized an entire party, assembled to take on the sea-bound menace that had been destroying ships and taking lives for years, and Jason was just reckless enough to swim right into their midst.

 

He’d been reckless, sure. But Jason was never a stranger to danger. He’d always known what might’ve had happen if he kept up his ventures. Except, instead of the quick death that he’d always imagined, the fishers took him alive instead. It was a terrible thought, one that Jason had started to contemplate as soon as it became clear that they were trying to fish him out without causing too much harm. He contemplated their purpose as they tied him down with chains and onto the cart to drive him away, contemplated his becoming fate as he was driven here, his massive tail smacking the wooden boards beneath him loudly while an inhuman shriek escaped his throat, an ear-piercing distress call that only omega mers made which sounded entirely different from the lovely songs they used to lure fishing boats to their doom. But it didn’t become clear until he was fully here, tied down on this massive stone altar atop a flight of stairs with the wooden statue of their local winged god behind it. It wasn’t until now that Jason had realized what he was meant to be.

 

And then Jason knew.

 

Mers were rare catches. They were seen as the ultimate nemesis a fisherman would face, and as such, their defeats were gallant. Legendary. The cost of a mer’s fins and scales were high. They were trophies, stories that fishermen would tell their grandchildren; or they’d be luxuries for kings, only the richest or the most noble of clans had the pleasure of collecting them. And Jason was a beautiful mer. His tail glistened a multicolored spectrum under the sun, his fins rich in color, and his eyes a clear emerald green. That, combined with how many had fallen before his capture - what a threat he’d been to them - made him the perfect candidate for a battle prize. A sacrifice, a gift fit for a god.

 

And that’s where he was now. Tied down alone on the stone altar, shrieking until his gills became dry from the dehydration, shadows of the dune and the wooden statue stretched until the sun had set completely, leaving him under a full night sky with constellations and the milky way staring down at him, until the mystical beast they call Alazul flew down to spirit him away.

 

No one knew what the bird-serpent really looked like. And Jason was about to find out, probably right before he had to face his fate of becoming bird-food.

 

He came not long after sundown. Alazul never showed himself to humans, but this was a sacred place, and the priests only came here during the day when the god would not show. Soon, Jason saw a shadow block out a patch of stars, coming closer, getting bigger, until almost his entire field of vision was one giant shape of darkness.

 

Jason barely felt any impact beyond a swift wind sweeping at his face, Alazul landed gracefully, his four wings carrying the weight of his body, his long, serpentine tail whisking an elegant curvature before settling over the altar, the long end wrapping onto the pillar of the wooden statue.

 

The god was indeed monstrous. His rich wings spanned six meters, his long, snake-like body thick and powerful. Yet, he had the upper torso of a man, a beautiful young thing with copper skin and raven hair, his bare chest was covered in an intricate tattoo, a loincloth tied to his waist, his scent a strange mix of bird and reptile and man but undoubtedly alpha, and his blue eyes glistened under the starlight as he stared at and studied Jason without movement.

 

Jason bared his teeth, trying to form a faux-roar that omega mers sometimes used to protect themselves from predators and other mers. But he was too dry, away from the ocean for too long for it to be useful. And the bird-god, obviously an alpha of his own clan, simply blinked without a sound. His powerful wings swiped and cut the ropes binding the mer’s body, and before Jason knew it, he was swept up into the air, tangled into a bundle by the serpent’s tail, the wind rushed through his hair as he helplessly held onto its body.

 

Giant wings flapped in the wind, loud sounds gushed in Jason’s ears, and he was taken higher and higher upon the night sky. Beautiful starlight surrounded him, the darkness of the forest rushed beneath his tail, and the light of the nearby villages rushed past them with lightning speed. He was taken into the mountains, with cliffs looming over them from all sides. Jason was able to make out a protrusion on the side where a giant nest made of branches lie. Another figure was rising up from it to greet them, also with wings, feathers brown and red, much smaller in size but no less menacing as it suddenly threw its head back and made a communicating call that was grating to the ears. Then the alpha answered with a call of its own, that deep timbre embedded in its voice.

 

The serpent god landed with grace, two pairs of wings flapped a few times to give himself enough cushion for landing, its tail gently placing Jason inside the nest and onto the rough surface within. The other creature landed before him, too, and it had legs instead of a tail, avian, not human-legs. A harpy beta inside the pack of the serpent alpha.

 

As soon as the pressure left him Jason tried to sit up, his fish body useless on the uneven ground of the nest. Anxiety and fear pounded in his ears, he was literally a fish out of water, his element cruelly taken away from him. He’d not have a hope of leaving here unless he wishes to become a pile of blood and guts staining the bottom of the valley.

 

Jason’s strong tail thrashed around in the nest, usually powerful and could easily break the backs of men, now useless in the dry nest as he bounced around helplessly. Jason’s mer eyes, well adapted to seeing through the darkness of the ocean, could make out the looming shape of the four-winged beast as he stood above him, staring down, the tip of his tail rattling as it shook deliberately from left to right. And Jason slowly felt the scaly surface of a claw grabbing at his waist, sharp nails scratching the rough surface of his scales and sliding up until it gently grazed the naked skin of his torso, and a soft omega whine escaped out of Jason’s mouth. Then, his skin was met by a pair of moist lips, gently tracing the side of his torso and slowly going up, the black hair on the beta harpy fanning out on top of his skin.

 

Then, a low alpha growl sounded somewhere to the left of them, somewhere between avian and snake-like, vibrating and a little rough, utterly different from the song-like baritone of alpha mers, yet still familiar and authoritative enough to cause a shiver to shoot through his body. The red harpy stilled in his movements, seemingly taking a few moments to consider, then pulled away.

 

Jason blinked his moisture-filled eyes and looked up at the half-bird-half-serpent creature towering over him. And then, to his surprise, the serpent spoke. His voice deep with almost an echoing quality to it.

 

“Timothy, ” he said, “step away.”

 

The red harpy bowed his head and willingly stepped back in respect for his pack alpha, and the serpent untangled his tail in favor of lowering himself into the nest, his previously folded wings now stretching out again in a bizarre mix of intimidation and an alpha mating dance, the outer pair with deep black feathers shining purple under the starlight, and the inner, smaller set of appendages sporting a rich blue color, hue shifting as its angle changed.

 

Jason whined again as the serpent approached, the long, winding tail slowly finding its way around his own red aquatic ones, its blue-green scales shiny, almost luminescent. The bird towered above him, his serpentine body entwining Jason’s, his mix of pine and sandalwood scents foreign, blue eyes flashed down on him as Jason bared his sharp teeth and offered up a dangerous growl.

 

“Don’t fucking touch me, Alazul,” he said, fulling understanding by now the possible place of an omega among this bizarre pack of monsters.

 

Then, to his surprise, the creature bowed, black and blue wings sweeping back and stretching out in an elegant gesture, not unlike the mating ritual of the mers. 

 

“It’s Richard,” the bird-god said, then gesturing to the harpy-creature standing politely next to him, “and Timothy.”

 

And that was that. No more questions and answers, no explanations, just the vague assumption that Jason was a rare omega to be mated, a creature of the seas perfect to match the creatures of the sky. There were no words as Alazul - Richard - swept his loincloth to the side and revealed the two large, hard, reptilian penises, running his fingers between Jason’s wetting slit to push it open somewhat, and pushed the heads down through the two holes, Jason’s own struggles useless against the hold of the strong snake-like body of the god.

 

 

And that was it - the purpose of the sacrifice. Not as food for the gods but rather a breeding vessel for their young, a worthy womb for the next generation of gods. Perhaps this time the young would sport both avian wings and aquatic fins.

 

A new species of gods to be worshipped.