“Ser, I am clearly busy right now.”
Rethais rolled his eyes and tutted. The being sitting in front of him, a young Skyan ambassador, looked rather worried, wondering who Rethais was talking to. As the Skyan turned around, their worries turned into genuine fear, as they spotted the godly Void Lord standing in the doorway.
“Uh… should I… uh… leave?”
“You probably should…” Rethais nodded, jotting down a date and time on a small business card and handing it to the ambassador. “We can resume this meeting next week. Assuming I am still alive to do so.”
“Thank you… thanks for the help so far… Have a good day…” the Skyan got up and awkwardly made their way to the door.
The Void Lord stood to one side to let the Skyan pass, then turned his attention to Rethais. With several hideous thumps, Kenon stomped into Rethais’s office, clearly rather annoyed.
“Tell me, little Rethais, why have you betrayed my trust and conspired with other deities?”
Rethais immediately rolled his eyes again as he added the postponed meeting to his personal diary. “I have no idea what you are talking about.”
“You are working with another deity. Who are you working with?”
“I just told you, I have no idea what you are talking about. The only deity I have spoken to in the last couple of months is you.”
Clearly, the Void Lord was unsatisfied with Rethais’s answer. He stood in front of Rethais’s desk, snarling menacingly.
“I was going to be nice, you know. I had a contract all written out. But the Panelix, bless her heart, told me that you already have a contract with another deity. She did not know who though, so I can only assume that you have gone behind my back.”
“High General, I have done nothing but unwillingly serve you this entire time. I have not had-” Rethais’s statement was abruptly cut off by the Void Lord’s claws wrapping themselves around his neck.
“No more lies.”
Rethais stammered, trying to remain calm and also trying to remain alive and breathing. “I… am… not… lying…”
Before Kenon could squeeze Rethais’s neck any tighter, a knock on the door behind them distracted him. With a snarl, Kenon dropped Rethais on the floor and turned to see who it was. Bouncing excitedly in the doorway was a bright green Vrekan with silver armour.
“Hai! Is this Vice General Rethais’s office? I got a meeting with him in like 10 minutes! But the door was open so I thought I’d come in?”
The Void Lord eyed this interruption, slowly realising who they were. “Time Drake Elksia. Should you not be busy keeping an eye on Kinisis, or training with Kairos?”
“Normally, yeah!” Elksia beamed, giving off a slight, green, joyful aura as she entered the room. “But today, I got a contract to fulfil! Sorry I was a bit late!”
Kenon sneered at the little, rather mortal-looking semi-deity. This strange being was, for some reason, given divinity by the Whenvern and, worse, had more freedom than Kenon had.
“My protection contract! A buncha years ago, us Dessaron made a deal to look after each others’ families! Each one of us taking turns!”
“What? What does that have to do with…”
Kenon’s confusion was swiftly replaced with blood and gore. Elksia leaped up and over Kenon, stabbing the Void Lord through the neck, before kicking him across the room, putting herself between him and Rethais.
“I made a deal. I’m here to keep it. Kinda feel bad that I’ve done a pretty bad job of it!” Black and gold blood dropped off the large blades that extended from Elksia’s arms. “Now, the deal was, we take it all in turns. One each. You already had one from Retvik. You got a turn from me. Two left!”
The Void Lord scrambled to pick himself up, a flicker of fear in his eyes. “How is this a contract? What… WHAT IS THIS?”
Rethais shrugged, not sure himself. “I am pretty sure I did not sign anything…”
“Nah, ya didn’t. But you’re still part of it!” Elksia smiled, summoning a piece of paper from thin air. “Basically, the deal is that we make sure that our families are protected, and we use our new god stuff to make you all live longer! Something we wrote up when we went on our little adventure and Arkay blew up that Voidborn nest thingy. Actually, kinda more something Arkay wrote and we all agreed to.”
Kenon blinked in confusion. Part of him wanted to get up and attack this infernal little brat of a Time Drake. But he knew that he was playing with fire.
“So… Kenon cannot force me to work for him in exchange for my soul?” Rethais asked as he approached Elksia.
“Not forcibly, no!” Elksia was still bouncing excitedly. She pecked briefly at one of her claws, giggling at the taste of blood. “Honestly it’s only for other gods fucking you around. Can’t protect ya from everything, but we can, like, make you live way longer than normal. And stop you from assholes like Terry Kenny here.”
“Terrible Kenon! But, well, important thing is, this is all escalating. Next time Kenny here fucks up, he’ll be staring down Tenuk. Time after that? Well…” Elksia trailed off. “Let’s hope Old Kenon learns from this!”
The Time Drake continued to smile as she lifted Rethais back to his feet and quickly checked him over. She then patted Rethais on the shoulder and made her way for the door, pausing only to glare at Kenon.
“Dude, seriously, leave him the fuck alone. He’s married and he ain’t interested.”
Kenon stared blankly back at Elksia. “Are you going to make me?”
“Yeah. I’ll happily stab your bitch-ass again. Heck, me and Ret go easy on you. You don’t wanna draw the ire from Tenuk or, worse, Arkay.”
With a slight whimper, the Void Lord backed down and promptly left the room, presumably to tend to his wounds and pride.
“I’m sorry I ain’t here to protect you all the time…” Elksia sighed as she turned back to Rethais. “Also kinda sorry for not telling ya about this contract.”
“It… is fine…” Rethais muttered. “Thank you for saving me.”
“No worries! It’s all just part of the deal!”