Lights flickered on and off, sirens flared and things were generally going badly. Dessi had woken Tenuk up early, to tell him that something was attacking his ship, circling it and slashing at it with its razor sharp wings. The second Tenuk was awake, he threw on his space suit and headed to the cannon room, preparing for the worst.
“Dessi, can you see what’s attacking us?”
“Negative, ser! External visual scanners are down. You will have to aim manually!”
Tenuk grunted as he entered the cannon room, a domed, heavily reinforced room which enabled him to activate the turret guns. As he prepared to fire though, he saw what was attacking them.
“Master Tenuk, should I initiate a jump to get us out of here?”
“No…” Tenuk hesitated. He was about to do something incredibly stupid, but maybe, just maybe, the Whenvern would pause for a moment.
Tenuk activated one of the laser turrets, trying to lead his shots. There was no way the heavy duty blaster would actually do anything to the Dragon God of Time, but Tenuk wanted to draw the Whenvern’s attention to the cannon room, rather than have him damage the rest of the ship.
A single laser hit the Whenvern, scraping its tail. It roared and charged directly at the source of the laser. In a single, swift movement, it grabbed onto the ship and ripped the cannon room, a large amount of metal and electronics and Tenuk himself out, severely damaging the ship.
“I HAVE YOU NOW, YOU TRAITOROUS MONSTER!” Kairos roared as he grabbed hold of Tenuk. “THAT SPACE SUIT WILL NOT PROTECT YOU ONCE I PEEL IT AWAY! I ASSUME YOU ARE HERE TO TRY AND KILL ME AGAIN?”
“No…” Tenuk activated the loudspeaker on his suit. “Firstly, I can’t kill you. Secondly, I just want to talk.”
“MAYBE YOU SHOULD HAVE TALKED SOONER.”
“Yeah, well, mistakes were made in the past. Your mistake was to push the Kronospasts into committing multiple genocides. Mine was to not exhaust peaceful solutions before fighting back with violence… But perhaps we could make amends?”
“THERE ARE NO AMENDS TO BE HAD.”
“You could have broken this universe. Kinisis said she and Kenon would have fixed it, but you wouldn’t be a god any more. A measly mortal, just like me.”
Kairos landed on the roof of the ship, still clinging onto Tenuk. His talons dug deep into the ship’s plating.
“You don’t know that.”
“Neither do you…”
“So why ask. Why come here, all this way to the centre of this universe? You know I do not want to talk to you. You know what my religion preaches.”
Tenuk shrugged. “I know what you preach but I don’t know you. Why would a normal-lived mortal want to follow you if they don’t even know what you do, how you hold this universe together and enable us to experience linear time?”
The Whenvern’s grip loosened around Tenuk. “I do not understand. Are you conducting interviews with each of us six deities? To what end?”
“Well you should know better than anyone that knowledge is the best weapon one could have!” Tenuk explained. “The idea is to discover more evidence of what you all are, bring that information back to my fellow mortals and spread it all out. I mean, let’s face it, few beings outside of the Kronospast Empire really, truly understand how important you are. You’re just a dragon who wants to speed up time and kill the Goddess of Life and the Lord of Death.”
“Is that how most mortals see me?”
Kairos let go of Tenuk, sighing. “I want happiness. I want power. I want time to run smoothly and swiftly, without it affecting my disciples.”
“Even if that means killing the Goddess of Life?”
“No. That was not my brightest plan. But killing the Lord of Death? He probably deserves it. Since when has Arkadin ever given us happiness? If you wish to take one thing away from this, one thing you wish to tell others of me, I want longetivity, for myself and all beings.”
“That’s fair…” Tenuk sighed. “I’d love to go home and tell everyone that. Except… you’ve trashed my ship.”
Kairos looked at the destruction he had caused, then tutted. He picked up Tenuk with one claw, then waved his other claw at the ship. Before their eyes, the ship swiftly repaired itself, Kairos’s own actions being undone. As the ship returned to normal, Kairos flew to the underneath of the ship and chucked Tenuk inside.
“We are not even…” Kairos threatened. “I still despise you for betraying my beloved Kronospasts. They are my father’s favourite too. But should I gain a few more followers… then perhaps I shall… forget what you did…”
Tenuk simply nodded. “Thank you for not killing me.”
“Don’t push it!” Kairos snapped as he flew away. “Next time you enter my domain, I will rip you in half…”