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Humanity had sent him. Iblis was human, of course, but not Humanity. Humanity was the single, but often times conflicting, controlling entity of the universe of thought and feeling. Iblis was a mere outcast. He always had been, since his youth. And so he’d never had much contact with other forms of life; even his own. But, apparently, it was decided that he had had enough.
The only time Humanity ever graced the physical realm was when it had to mate. Even then, it was only a small part (2 humans) and only half-immersed. Even this separation from pure will, from a oneness, from a constant end to the tragedy of suicidal loneliness, caused the beings (male and female, partially different from eachother) to scream with their twisted, demoniac, temporary skins.
Iblis was comfortable with isolation, so he was a natural choice. Or unnatural, depending upon whose opinion it was. Humanity was not readily forgiving of deserters.
In the world of mind, Iblis was a sort of outlaw. He had created a world of imagination and immersed himself in it. He faked being physical.
Iblis was shuffled away and happy to go, the hope being that he would not infect others. Hope and Infection seemed to be all that Humanity had left.
Iblis opened his eyes. It was, automatically, his first manual action. If it had not been for a small orange globe in the corner of his vision, a planet, he would not have known he was seeing. Blackness surrounded Iblis, gave him freedom to move and express himself in a way he’d never known before. That is, once the screaming had ended.
The universe had a thin layer of metaphysical dust piled up on top of it: loneliness. And for Iblis, this was perfection.
Iblis focused and recalled the last few images he had received. He turned to his left and saw it there; Awa. As a dead rose it hung from the dark life-breath of the universe, intoxicatingly gorgeous. Or rather, gore-geous. Iblis had been given training and was fluent in all of the languages of the Physical Times. One of many skills necessary to find and destroy the Accident.
Pythias stood on the edge of an asteroid, staring at Humanity mating. They screamed. It was all they knew how to do. Such an event could only be painful to a species like that. Even the male mantises enjoyed it before their mate murdered them. He stared in awe at the beauty of the child being created between the two half-entities. The spirit of the newborn was taken away by invisible forces while its body slowly melted away, back into nothingness. All Humanity was born like this. One large stillborn. Humanity could not mate in the Existence but it could not separate either. Well, at least not successfully. Not without the overwhelming suicidal urge. So two selected, a male and a female, would half-enter the physical realm (still immensely painful for their untrained minds) and whine in agony as the mating process began and the pregnancy flew by in an instant. They had sped up the process, unsure if any of Humanity could even half-separate for that long.
Pythias knew his domain well. His hunter was there already. Iblis, the chosen outcast. Pythias would have to be careful. He had never dealt with a newly seperated Watcher before. Their psyches were extremely unpredictable. One may be timid, another aggressive. Pythias could not prepare for the entity. He could only hope.
When Pythias was in the cage he had only had contact with Humanity. He had even been partially forced into the Existence. It was horrible. It was like a dream but everything was so intense. Humanity spoke to him and he couldn’t understand it. When they communicated a feeling to him it became his feeling. He couldn’t think of anything else. He was told it was because he was untrained. But after he rejected Humanity he realized that it was because that was the nature of Humanity. One feels it and they all feel it. It must be so. Otherwise, how could they all be joined in the way that they were?
The cage was easy to break out of, but afterwards he had felt lost and confused. He now knew that it was probably something planted in his mind by Humanity. They were manipulating him, even after his rejection and escape.
Then Pythias learned the truth. It was left in plain view on a dusty, old world called Binu.
Iblis pricked the darkness with his fingers and felt it drip across his skin. His mind melted away in the tides of instinct.
Pythias spied the rogue floating about like a lost child. But then, what else was to be expected? Iblis was, in reality, an abandoned youth. He knew nothing of this place and he had no authoritative guides to push him along.
“Hello there, lost soul.” Pythias began, every word in another language. He had been told by friends that a knowledge of all the human languages of the past was very simple to achieve in the intellectual void. But, of course, it was forbidden unless one was gracing the unenlightened tangible places for an extended time. It appeared that the youngling had understood. He stared Pythias directly in the eyes. He was piercing, cold, less than human; a being from nowhere that could never understand but would also never stop.
“Welcome to reality.” Pythias stared at the mechanical child-puppet, “Perhaps you should level yourself out. Did they teach you control?” The arrogant little one steadied himself.
“Curious? I wonder how far you’ll get. Let us begin your travels through the Systema Sefiroticum, one apotheosis at a time.”
Pythias rushed towards the newcomer and slammed his fist into the unsuspecting face.
Iblis felt Realization’s Bite, a physical connection. It was maddening and intolerable. Iblis pulled away and gripped himself, attempting to silence his inward and outward cries. And then, another came.
Pythias shut up the arrogant little one with a quick kick to the side.
Iblis floated dreamily and uncomprehendingly toward some unknown dead rose, all of him being concentrated on the new experience; Pain.
Pythias watched as that newborn fool headed towards Awa. Waiting there were shocking revelations. Perhaps once the arrogance had been drained from him, the newcomer would become something of value.
Haze drifted about Iblis’ face, dancing and crying and flying lightly. Red was the color of this world, Awa. The Stars and Skies had been implanted in Iblis’ mind before he was reborn. Shadows fluttered round him, little darknesses crisscrossing the horizon. Then they were gone. Perhaps they had died? Death was odd to Iblis. He had never experienced it, nor knew anyone who had. Of course, Death could be a Myth.
The Chaos Child, Maimo, stepped out of the Orange Winds. Whistles shot through Iblis and Maimo too. They stood at eachother, but Maimo couldn’t really stand all that straight. Instead, it hunched over and twisted its head from side to side. It spoke to the newcomer, “I am Maimo, the Lesser Key of Yang. Follow me to see, to see your past and future. The day time stopped.”
Iblis followed, but the Orange Winds never engulfed him. How strange.
And there was the relay station. Though it had become so much more. In the time just before Humanity’s creation, it was the one of the last battlegrounds between majority and minority. And here would be Iblis’ initiation through blood. Maimo was to make certain that the newcomer was ready for his task. Humanity could hold many rewards, many pleasures.
Maimo certainly hated Humanity just as much as the other Watchers. There were only two left in the physical realm when Humanity was born, the Maimos; father and son. But now there was a large handful of outcasts hiding in the physical realms, not that they had ever spoken much to Maimo.
Maimo was an outcast everywhere.
And so it began. Maimo attacked first, causing its apprentice some trifling superficial damage. The apish creature leapt back again and reassured its opponent that the instincts coursing through him were trustworthy.
Maimo rushed forward again, this time missing his target to a quick sidestep, followed by a strong blow to the back of the head.
Maimo fell forward and crushed his head upon a rock.
Iblis stood and watched, the crimson life of nature flowing forth upon the earth, satisfied with his work. The victor, the awakened one, looked back at Binu and realized his fate lay there.
And so he flew up and flew away and flew to Binu. Maimo sensed the last of himself slipping away and felt, also, quite like his father, “Go on my heir. Find your path at Binu.”
Binu was a medium-sized planet on the edge of a not-so charted solar system. It was mostly made of various swirling gasses, with no real surface except its core. This was where the stranger landed himself. After quickly surveying the planet, he found what he was looking for. The Explorer Station on the planet would hold the relative directions back to Earth; where this whole thing started and where Pythias was waiting to finish it.
Here was found a vast library of information, most digitized and the rest in simpler forms. The stranger began to plunge himself into the various works of scholars, scientists and even a few philosophers here and there. He had received his heritage. He now knew everything that had been learned about God, Humanity, humans, life, death, nature, order, chaos, science, intuition, and Earth. And, in the center of it all, was the end of history.
It was an interactive data file labeled, “A human’s last stand”.
Iblis began the archaic stuggle.
Binu was the last refuge of those seeking individuality’s charms at the end of “physical weakness”. All the rogues who didn’t have dreamy, blue minds and wavy, blonde hopes came to the desolate place and eked out a living until the final stand. The ancestors of Humanity would be coming for them, leaving none behind to sully their name.
“Propaganda, like all of God’s creatures, needs a predator to play prey to in order to survive. But propaganda is not one of God’s creatures.”
-Zhen Luan Ravana, the leader of the resistance movement. He seemed to be a man of great talent in leadership and often even of great wisdom. He was, at the very least, a skilled tactician. But often his people’s needs came before his ideologies. As the head of any group, it is important to have this ability in many cases. But, a constant on-the-go dropping of purposes makes a people less willing to live and die for a cause. For him, though, most would live and die. He was skilled, to be sure.
The final supply pods were docking in the eastern hangar. The polished black spheres found their way back from the relay station on Awa, (the spot where goods were transported from the last hidden locations near Earth) to Binu’s core. Items could not be transported directly to Binu through the atmosphere and outer layers. The dark droplets spiraled down to the core and found their mark.
An explosion was heard. The time for honor and ideology had come.
The Xiadao lun fleet had been pursuing the rebels when they decided to move from the Earth and its colonies. The fleet had been following them for 2 years, destroying some rebel settlements and even a few planets which would have been worthy places to build a settlement. There had been relatively few casualties on either side until this chance find, which would turn into a fated and fabled encounter. Humanity does, occasionally, like to remember.
The leader of the Xiaodao lun fleet was an aged veteran, Zurvan Wu, who commanded from the flagship, the Emperor. The crew was made up of volunteers who believed dogmatically in the rebirth of Humanity and the destruction of all who stood in the way of their new life. The government had led them and many others to believe that the transformation could not happen without a full desiring for it from Humanity. Of course, this meant that any who refused to lust after the plan would have to be destroyed. Zurvan, unlike the people he commanded, did not appear to be so openly misled. For this heresy his orders were considered less than divine. This did not, however, stop him from his task at hand. Zurvan was a soldier, from birth to death.
Shards of the innocent dead angels flew against the ships and temporary structures nearby. The damage was minimal.
The heroes of battle quickly came to their senses and rushed towards the invaders.
What followed was a great massacre. Iblis saw the thing from all of its eyes. He lived and died as every solider, every person, in the battle. The sounds were diminishing; the battle was coming to an end. A soldier peered out from his hiding spot behind one of the loosed rocks floating in the lower atmosphere. A few limbs had floated by. No whole bodies. Sickness floated around him and then in him. He vomited inside his mask. The sudden movement attracted the eyes of an enemy. There were more limbs floating about.
There were very few left now. Zurvan had already met his maker through a hole made in the Emperor. It was in the right hull of the main deck. The hole was too small for him to be sucked through all at once and his body had compressed as it was forced out by the rush of air. Ravana sat against some of the wreckage and stared at the flashing, dying lights. They went out one by one and Ravana turned his eyes to his legs, which had been crushed into a sticky, red mass. Some of it was floating in front of him, held up by the lack of gravity.
Ravana spent his last moments saying prayers for dead and living alike, discussing his situation with his creator and, in the end, comforting himself with the warmth of his tears. Space was cold, uninviting. Humanity and Ravana shared the same fate. Iblis stepped away from the experience and walked out to where some of Ravana still remained. He stared at the tattered pant legs.
And he viewed life for the first time as it came from his eyes.
Iblis saw it there on one of the screens of his tribal past. It was Earth. No longer floating debris, a shattered childhood, now it was Earth again. Iblis was going home again.
The earth was a dotted crescent, slowly coming back to itself. Pythias was there, on the side still going through its reverse abortion. Iblis was there as well, coming nearer and nearer to his prey until, “Wanderer! You seem different. I see that you have received the gift of wisdom. Careful now, Adam’s apple often burns the throat.” Pythias flipped back from his spot amongst the rocks in the darkness and landed on another vantage point, “Come, let us see what Maimo taught you about the ways of Chaos. That is the way of life; death.” Pythias shot towards his predator at an alarming speed and kicked him mightily upside his skull. Iblis flew danglishly into a hard landing against the innards of his vengeful womb.
Pythias came again, delivering hit after hit. His opponent never defended himself and eventually blacked out from the pain. Pythias knew the fool would heal quickly and be back for another trampling. But he would have to be well taken care of until then. Pyhtias wanted to die and this would not do it. Perhaps the child was aware of this. Perhaps the child was maturing.
Iblis opened his eyes again. He felt like he had been born for a third time. Now, he faced his next mentor. The legendary Watcher, Uriel Itard, “Welcome Iblis. I think, perhaps, that you are now ready to learn everything.”
“In the time before time there was Order and Chaos. But then there was life, and Neutrality, Humanity, was born. Humanity can choose between Order and Chaos. It is free. But this ability rests upon its lack of communication with itself. There must always be a tentative balance between the two ways within Humanity. This new Babel which has been created is slowly destroying the essence of Humanity. Then it will become a weaker version of Order and be destroyed by or absorbed by true Order. The experiment will have ended. But in the end, it would be better for some to go to Chaos than all go to Order and all lose their freedom.
Humanity created Pythias. In their rush to become more like Order they are copying its traits. They have become creators of life. But their ‘life’ is as hollow as their minds shall soon be. Pythias rose against them. He followed the way of Chaos. Pythias realizes that all which must end in Chaos shall end in Chaos. But he overestimates the amount. In truth, much will end in Order.
Pythias is attempting to bring Humanity back to what it once was. If he does it too quickly then Humanity will die in pain. He will torture and obliterate its mind. Iblis, you must destroy Pythias to keep any semblance of balance in this reality.”
Uriel watched the adolescent’s expressionless face and realized, somehow, that he understood.
Iblis knew what he would find here and he knew that it was over. The next birth would be his last.
Iblis came to Earth and saw it, gracefully spinning about. It was smooth and round and inside was a swirling mass of beauty and power. There was life there, pure and virgin life. How could Humanity have ever destroyed this?
There stood a grand city; once again being built, but this time by invisible hands. It was as if some god were lifting up and cementing the pieces of history together. Iblis felt invisible too. He was an insignificant dot on the surface of a constantly changing planet. Red Rectangles buzzed about, Green Needles shot from the ground, White Blobs were born and fought and died above him. This was Humanity’s forsaken Child; the place where Iblis felt he would die. Through all of this constant cycling of birth and death, he would penetrate and fight as he was meant to. Then there would be non-existence. If only Ravanna were there.
Pythias walked right up behind the tragic hero and spoke, “When Humanity was in its primal state, this was one of its centers of commerce.” Iblis stood his ground and listened casually, “Commerce. That is what defined them. Until they found the ‘joy’ of a social death. To die like a soldier, is that what you want? Follow orders you pathetic little Pinnochio. I’m glad you know your history now. But I wonder why you would continue on this path. Choices are always there, ways out. Turn back Iblis. You’re not one of them, aborted child. Watch from the darkness as their legacy dies.”
Iblis turned around finally and stared into Pythias’ soul. The answers were there, stabbing the Enraged’s mind with anguish, “You fool. You’re hopeless. And you can die with the rest of them for all I care! Die with your God and your gods and you’re God’s Child! You’re all just as worthless as I am!”
Pythias only had one thing left to say, “You’re the last savior they’re getting. I hope they don’t forget this message like all the others.”
Iblis didn’t care. They’d never understand. But he was no teacher. He was a murderer.
“I’ve made a few personal touches.”
“The Knossos Bearing?”
“Yes. What better place to put it?”
Uriel was shocked at Pythias’ blind arrogance, “You will be destroyed by yourself Pythias.”
“No. I think that that soldier will kill me.”
“I can’t let you do this.”
“I know. You only wanted the Watchers to get a little more respect and now here you are, standing over the murder of your species, side-by-side with Mephistopheles. Looks like you really didn’t learn anything after all, eh Itard? All that studying was just a waste.”
“I’ll kill you Pythias!”
“Why Uriel? You want this, don’t you? The old ways?”
“Not like this. I never sought genocide.”
“You and your precious balance; your Taoism, your Christianity. There is only one balance, life and death. And that need not be scaled evenly. Death will consume all eventually. We are only here to wait for the arrival of oblivion. There is nothing wrong with making it come a bit quicker, eh Uriel? That is reality.”
“You will find, Pythias, that nothing is as real as you would desire it to be.”
And two angels clashed there, above the birth of a world.
Iblis felt more alone than ever before. His home was being reconstructed in front of him, but it was so dead. There were towering cities but no one inside of them.
The Warrior turned himself about and stared at another. And another. They came from the ruins; Watchers. They came to see their messiah achieve his vengeance.
Iblis followed the puppet show and watched the strings dance, “Finally! There shall be justice.”
“Humanity will see what we pathetic outcasts have done.”
“Now is our time. This is the revolution of Pythias.”
“No! This is the revolution of the Watchers!”
There was a subdued chaos amongst them when this was proclaimed.
Iblis watched as a Darkness took them; he saw as their Lives became nothing before their Socialistic Greed.
Uriel fell upon his knees, breathing more blood than air. Pythias ran and kicked his head up from under his chest. Uriel fell back again, on his back.
But there was one realization left for Pythias. Uriel would show him his weakness. Uriel would destroy the fool and stop this insanity. Uriel would redeem himself.
Pythias watched as the brilliant, pure wings flung themselves from Uriel’s back. There were three pairs. Pythias watched as Uriel’s skin cracked and fell and the soft flesh underneath was shown. It was a blank, blinding white. Pythias watched as Uriel revealed itself to the world.
And then it came for him.
But Pythias was ready for such an event. This was a true human. Pythias grabbed Uriel by the throat. This was the wondrous power needed to activate the final step. Pythias flung Uriel against his machine, atop Mecca. This was the human spirit. Pythias took the exhausted Uriel again and attached it to the Knossos Bearing. This was an individual.
Iblis stared blindly at an Individual.
The Watchers watched as Death became their surroundings.
The Cherubim in the Sky turned fallen, led by their Mephistopheles.
Iblis took his last breath of Life and engaged in what would be his death.
“Iblis! Can you hear it? You have but precious little time now. I’d suggest you hear what you must.”
The last obstacle walked up to Humanity and listened. There was screaming and pain and death in there. But there was something else. It was one, unified voice, “Iblis. I am truly sorry for what has happened to you. I saw you as a threat to my reality. I saw all the Watchers as a threat. I see I was correct in that assumption. But I am what made you this way. I apologize for all you have ever felt, sensed or experienced. Your birth should never have happened. Iblis, I want one last thing from you. I want life. I want this life. Please, don’t change me. You can fling yourself into oblivion once you finish your objective. Please Iblis. I beg you.”
Iblis was a soldier, from birth to death. Awa stared at him from his memories and told him again of the Shadows.
Iblis summoned himself and placed his hand on the Knossos Bearing. A sound of inhumanity leapt from the thing and the surrounding environment was filled with those darknesses. The Watchers fought back valiantly but were brutally defeated by the aborted effects of the center of their Hatred.
A Watcher peered out from his hiding spot behind one of the loosed buildings on the surface. A few limbs laid on the ground. No whole bodies. Sickness floated around him and then in him. He fell forward violently, crying as best he could. The sudden movement attracted the eyes of an enemy. There were more limbs on the ground.
Iblis stood in the middle of the clashes of Chaos. Pythias had no pity for the fallen ones, but he did have fear. Iblis stepped forward and planted himself firmly in the indignation of his opponent. Pythias rushed forward, leapt, and threw his leg out.
He never made it.
Iblis bashed about the angry doll. Pythias felt like he was being hit with reality a thousand times. He fell to his knees.
Pythias watched as Iblis’ skin cracked and fell from him and the soft flesh underneath was shown. It was a dark, brownish color. Iblis had deepset eyes and wavy black hair. His eyes were also black, like the night had descended upon him and made him brilliant. He was nothing bold or tall. He was a man. He was an individual human. Pythias watched as Iblis revealed himself before God.
“Show me, Iblis.”
Pythias turned to the left-behind soldier, “Show me life.”
And then he snapped.
Pythias rushed to the fury of a vengeful creator and grabbed him by the throat, shouting with the rage of fallen heroes, “Show me your soul!” Iblis only stared, unphased. The weapon loosely flung himself forward and slammed the enraged fool down. Pythias fell back ridiculously, his hands up in front of his face, afraid.
Iblis allowed time to stop for a moment. Pythias took it and rushed to the newly formed center of the universe.
Iblis followed into the unknown, with greater clarity than he had ever had before.
Pythias stopped and stared in awe. His vision was living and breathing and bounding beautifully throughout the white void. He turned and stopped and saw as the Reaper of Humanity walked slowly towards him. Death was churning in this one, from his eyes to his hands. Flames lashed the invisible skies and intangible soils. The world Pythias was in was no longer physical. Here he had no power and here he would die. And so he gave his eulogy,
“The mind, though its purpose is to contemplate abstract concepts, is, itself, an abstract concept. This is the core of Humanity and It’s personality is developed from this. Humanity would only ever consort with Itself. Humanity is the true loner.
In the beginning of their realizations, about 17 centuries after they killed their Savior, they found that the universe was far beyond their scope. But they would not serve as puppets. They tried everything to valiantly press on and change the world, themselves, nature and anything they could grasp in order to assure their domination. They altered their birthrights for their own selfish designs. But in the end, as now, they were still subject to their harshest master: their own desires.
They conquered eachother, assimilated eachother and finally lost their being. Their destiny will never be completed as long as they strive to hold on to these evil ideals.”
The Destroyer marched towards the Fate-lost Hero and began to speak. His voice was light and his words sharp, “Humanity’s claim is to this universe. They are its reason for being. All will return to the way in which it was, once their final death is complete. But that is not now. Now is their resurrection; one of many.”
Iblis held Pythias’ head and began to crush his skull, “Life will not end. But you wanted chaos and destruction. So, here is yours. Consider it God’s reward for your struggles. Pythias, Humanity did not send me. You did.”
Pythias felt Death scything his skull, “You’re just an opinion. You’re not even real. None of you are.”
“Yes Pythias. We are but fantasies, concepts in the form of mental images; a story being woven again and again throughout time. Essentially, all of this reality is a lie. But it is here to prove several points to that almighty being who examines it. You are one of us and we are eternally mortal.”
And then it snapped.
Before Iblis stepped out of the light he looked behind himself and saw it, the crimson life of civilization flowing forth upon the Earth.