Istoria had been watching Death move stuff around for several hours. She didn’t want to be sitting in that awkward, slightly painful chair, but she didn’t want to anger Death either. The last time she had asked if she could move, Death ‘accidentally’ dropped the heaviest thing she could find on Istoria’s feet.
But slowly, Death was moving less things around and more stopping and staring at Istoria. The last thing she did was erect an easel in front of Istoria and stick a canvas on it.
“What are you doing?” Istoria finally asked as Death rummaged around for some drawing utensils.
“Thinking.” Death didn’t say anything else. Instead, she walked over, created some straps out of thin air and proceeded to tie Istoria to her chair.
“My Lady, please, I’m confused… and these are a bit tight.”
Death smiled, loosened the straps, then returned to her easel. She picked up a pencil and started sketching on the canvas.
Istoria remained silent for a moment, before asking again. The straps weren’t a problem now, but she was beginning to lose feeling in her legs. She hadn’t moved in ages.
“Kinisis, my Lady, what is going through your mind?”
The Veth sighed. This was how Death had been for the last four days. Forcing Istoria to sit in a chair and watch as she moved things around. She’d spent seven hours watching Death tidy up the shores of Kinigi on her own, while chasing off or attacking any Veth who offered to help. She spent three hours watching Death destroy a bunch of Veth settlements and caves. She spent a whole day being dragged behind Kinisis as she rounded Veth up, attached long chains to their necks and forced them to guard specific areas.
Istoria was sick of it.
“What?” Death asked as she peered around her canvas.
“What the fuck are you doing?”
“I told you!” the Lady of the Cycle grinned. “Changes! I’m making changes!”
Istoria paused. The last time she had been like this, Kinisis had caused universe-wide mass extinctions, killing trillions of beings, just so she could start anew. And even then, she still wasn’t satisfied and caused another gigantic mass extinction half a billion years later.
“What… what sort of changes?”
“Kinigi changes!” Kinisis beamed. “Oh, I know what you’re thinking. Don’t worry, I’m quite happy with life in the main universe. Even if it is a bit too… religion-y for my liking. They’ll grow out of that when Stasis and Kairos grow out of that.”
“But why are you acting all weird?” Istoria pressed on.
“Because I’ve decided I need to make everything easier and more uniform. But more change-y at the same time.”
Istoria sighed. She still didn’t understand. Death picked up on her confusion, but also the underlying anger and frustration.
“You think I have lost my mind, don’t you?”
“Do not lie to me.”
“Fine…” Istoria growled. “Yes, I think you have gone insane. You’re going crazy because you nearly died and you can’t truly comprehend not existing, so you’re desperately flailing to try and stop it all from happening again!”
Death shrugged and continued scribbling away. “I wouldn’t say I was flailing.”
“You don’t know what to do.”
Istoria didn’t answer. She fell silent, thinking to herself. Death tutted in a “thought not!” way and went back to scribbling, this time in some sort of ink. Eventually, Istoria perked up with a new question.
“What are you drawing?”
A huge grin appeared on Death’s face. “I think you’d like it.”
“What is it?”
Istoria blinked, once again confused and annoyed. “Are you… not going to tell me?”
Suddenly, Death turned the canvas around. It was an inked picture of Istoria, but not as she was currently.
“I’m designing the new you. The new Veth. The new Kinigi.” Kinisis smiled once more as she got up and untied Istoria. “Come now, little one. We have work to do.”