“Tell me, lord…why is it you’ve forsaken me? Have I not done your will without question? Have I not proven myself in your eyes?” A man prays before an altar made of obsidian. It sat within a church that was only lit by the occasional torch aglow with a purple flame. The man himself wore a purple hooded sleeveless tunic atop ebony pants and knee-high boots. Black tattered bandages wrapped around his forearms. Black veins coursing through his pale flesh. Turning red as they enter his hollow black eyes with eerie white pupils. His black goatee was the only facial feature clearly visible. “Is there yet more I must do in your name? Were my tributes no enough? Please, answer me o’ blighted ones.” the man looks upward to a statue that stood behind the altar. It appeared to be a muscular man who was a human-dragon hybrid with noticeable draconic hands, feet, wings, tail, and horns. His torso leaning forward with his arms bound to the wall behind him. As if he fought to escape a stone prison. For the briefest of moments, the man sees a flicker of light in the statue’s eyes and stands. “Thank you, my lord. Your will shall be done.”
The man turns and leaves the church. Pushing open the door to reveal a ravaged and destroyed city. It’s roads covered with corpses. It’s people in a mad frenzy as they attacked one another blindly. Trees and buildings set ablaze under a crimson sky that rained ash and flames beneath a black moon. Angels basking in the chaos in whatever method they deemed fit. Some enjoying the slaughter and others merely admiring it. The cries and shouts of the people who once called this city home echoing without rest. The man looks upon the carnage and remains unmoved.
“DANTE!” a voice shouts from the heavens. A golden light piercing the sky like a bullet as it flies fist first towards the hooded man who catches the fist with his right hand. The shockwave of the impact creating a surge of golden and black energy.
“Rodin…” Dante says to the short haired and clean shaven man. He wore a jet black shendyt, a cloth skirt that wrapped around the waist and extended to his knees. A golden belt is worn atop of it and a long sash wrapped across the chest from the Star Core embedded below his right collarbone. Extending down to the left side of his waist, returning up to the Star Core, and wrapping around his neck like a scarf. Golden wristbands and anklets finishing his look. His shendyt rippling with the faint image of galaxies and his body sheathed in a golden aura. Tattooed on his back was the image of wasp wings. “I wondered how long till you’d find me.” he releases a surge of Abyssal Aether to blow back Rodin several feet into the air.
“It’s not too late brother. You can stop this madness!” Rodin pleads.
“The only one guilty of madness is you, Rodin. Were you truly my brother you’d know how foolish it is to challenge me.” Dante puts his right hand forward and fires a stream of Abyssal Aether. The black energy tearing through the air. To stop it, Rodin holds both hands forward and creates a golden circular barrier. Blocking and dispersing the stream around him into the roads and nearby buildings. “You know what awaits us and yet you deny it! You fight to protect a damned reality for deities who could care less about it.”
“You’re wrong!” Rodin explodes his barrier forward, giving him a second to dash to the side and fly towards Dante once more. Locking hands with him and crashing to the floor. “Our reality is not the damned one! You champion a realm of darkness so fervently you ignore the death and ruination you leave in your wake! How many more lives must be lost till you are satisfied?”
“As many as my lord demands.” Dante answers defiantly. His eyes aglow with Abyssal Aether. A Rift Gate opens and out flies a dark blue stream of fire that knocks Rodin off of Dante and sliding to the floor. Allowing Dante to stand up next to his new ally who exits the Rift Gate. A charred body covered with dark blue flames and flaming white eyes. Dante turns to look at his brother once more. “Whether you like it or not brother…the Abyssal Gods WILL awaken and I shall usher them in.”
“No matter how long it takes…I’ll find a way to save you, Dante.” Rodin stands and hovers a foot off the ground.
“Like how you saved White Dwarf?” Dante looks down on Rodin. “In your foolish quest to save lives, you decided to restart a sun that had died. It must’ve been quite the sight. The sun exploding and expanding to its former glory. I suppose in your eyes, spreading light and refueling the Starpulse is only natural. But for White Dwarf it was a death sentence. His home thrived in the cold void and the moment you gave the star a new life…you ended his. But my Lord saw fit to give him new life. Life to seek revenge against you and your ilk.” Dante says as a Rift Gate opens behind him. “Farewell, brother. Like the deities you serve, you shall be felled by the mistake you’d bury.” With one last look back, Dante enters the Rift Gate with it closing behind him.
Not a moment after Dante’s departure does White Dwarf surge with flames, holding both hands forward and firing twin streams of flame at Rodin. The flames clashing with Rodin’s golden barrier as he holds both hands forward to maintain it. The strength and intensity of his flames rivaled a sun. It’s power growing as White Dwarf slowly approached his nemesis until they are only a foot away from the other.
“Please! We don’t have to fight!” Rodin pleads to the flaming wraith who knew no forgiveness.
“RAGHHHH!” White Dwarf bellows. His guttural roar accompanied by a black smog that fills the streets. After a few moments, his eyes ignite and his breath becomes flames. Traveling along the smoke and turning the city into a true hellscape. The flames incinerating civilian and Angel alike. Even for the Radiant who’s job allowed him to travel to the surface of suns, the flames burned intensely. Had he not put all his strength into his Cosmic Barrier, he’d be ash in an instant.
“Ungh…I take no pleasure in this…” Rodin strains to maintain his footing against the fiery onslaught. The flames making it difficult to breathe. But Rodin still had tricks up his sleeve. Like his brother Dante, Rodin was a skilled mage and could call upon the Aether to cast spells. Tragically, with the Abyssal Aether overwhelming the World they were on he was forced to further draw from his Star Core. “Verti Domirugra!” he calls upon the Cosmic Aether flowing through his Star Core. Creating a cosmically empowered magnetic well in the air behind White Dwarf. Pulling him towards it and giving Rodin the opening he needed. The second White Dwarfs head is pulled up ever so slightly by the magnetic well, Rodin flies as fast as he can off the planet and into space. Stopping when he passes the shattered moon that has begun to be pulled towards to planet by its gravity.
Injured and exhausted, Rodin drifts aimlessly in space. His Star Core pushed to the limit, he only had enough power left to maintain his Cosmic Aura and flight. As he gazed upon the dying planet he felt powerless. He had just barely escaped with his life and by the time he could return to undo what Dante had done, it’d be too late. Rodin had lost the battle against his brother this day. But deep down he knew the war was not over. That he’d need to keep fighting to ensure the Abyssal Gods were never awoken. For if they got freed it’d not be long before Iblis followed behind…
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