Ze- Lost Gods
by LaVerne Thompson
“He can never remember.” The collective entity making up the Fates warned Kratos.
He never raised his head to look at the four identical beautiful beings, shrouded in shimming white cloth from head to toe, with the planes of their faces barely visible, even then their features were ever changing. Seemingly to represent all the peoples of the world. At times all four appeared feminine, but others he was not so sure all were female. It mattered not. “Tell me nothing of what can or can not come to pass. Would that I could have that gift or curse to forget. Forget we no longer have the powers we once did. Have been all but forgotten.”
“It is as the world should be Kratos. You know this. Humans must make their own decisions, be the makers of their own will. Not that of the gods. No matter how powerful.”
He scoffed. “Yes. The gods.” He placed his hand in the water swirling it and dispersing the image they’d been looking upon. At one who in another age, other times had been the most powerful amongst them. Reason enough for the Fates to condemn Zeus. The Father of them all and a god he himself had killed, his body dispersed down to dust, carried off unto the four winds and mixed amongst all matter. Yet, never completely destroyed, pieces of him being reborn over the ages. God no more, each time just a man.
A fate worse than death for one such as he. Unfortunately, for them all, Zeus’ destruction had created a chain of events opening the world to chaos, the fall of Olympus and everything they had once known. The Fates had no choice but to take control and punish them all. Perhaps their plan all along and the excuse they needed. There could be none more powerful than they. Still Zeus must be called forth once more.
Kratos, pulled the black hood over his even darker locks, walked out of the obsidian hall into the crumbled ruins of what had once been Olympus, home of the gods. Even with his eyes open he could still see the opulence of the buildings as they once stood. The gleaming golden doors twelve feet tall, the music that lulled and pleased ones senses filling the halls. Gone. All of it. And he no longer had the power to change any of it.
He would wish the Fates to a mortal hell, but they’d already placed him there and there was no release for his soul. His body melded into the dark matter making up the night, and he returned to the nothingness he was.
The four who remained behind continued to watch the water in the pond as it settled. Returning to its calm state and the vision came once more.
“He can not remember, everything.” The husky whisper came from the center form.
“No. That would not bode well for what he must yet do,” the tallest of the four stated.
“As the son destroyed the father so to must the father destroy the son,” one whispered.
“For all the powers the All Father had he too came to his inevitable end. Death comes for all, even a god,” the final sister pronounced shaking her head.
“All the gods are dead. Long live the gods.” The cry came in unison vibrating with the power of the Fates.
“Hey Ze, you ready, man?”
Eyes the color of a summer storm zeroed in on the tall man standing at the door. “Sorry, Linc.” Ze shut his laptop, pushing his chair away from his desk, he stood. All six five of him, situated on a solidly built frame.
“Is that the Chinese?”
“Yeah.” Linc, his president of operations and right arm, refereed to the latest deal his company, Lightning Enterprises was working on.
Linc would be shocked if he knew not only had Ze not been working on any last minute tweaking of their deal but he hadn’t been working on anything related to business legit or otherwise. Since at times they straddled the gray. Instead, Ze’d been dreaming.
He wanted to rub his throbbing temples, but he’d show weakness in front of no one, not even his oldest and most trusted friend. The visions no longer came to him at night, when his eyes were closed and his defenses down. In the last month he’d been wide awake, eyes wide open, yet still dreaming. He didn’t know what else to call it, no matter how real they seemed, it couldn’t be, but shit had to stop. Too much was at stake.
Linc frowned. “What’s wrong?”
He almost smiled, his friend knew him too well. They’d spent a lot of time in hell together. Linc was the only one who knew he’d been to see a doctor but even Linc didn’t know why.
At first he’d gone to his doctor for sleeping pills, fuck lot of good that shit did. Only took him under deeper to some seriously fucked up shit. Where he’d turn into a big ass white eagle, at least he thought it was an eagle who knew they could be white. But that was not the only thing he could do in these visions, he could also call lightning down from the sky in the form of a thunderbolt. Which he’d hold in his hand and toss at an army of beasts, misshapen dinosaur looking creatures in front of him. All stuff he could never tell anyone. They’d either lock his ass up or someone would put him out of his misery with a bullet to the head. Show no weakness. That mantra kept him alive these 34 years.
He rubbed his hand across his face, lingering a little at his small dark brown goatee. It matched the color of his short cropped hair. The darkness of his hair in sharp contrast to the color of his eyes something women loved. Friends and enemies just called him a silver eyed son of a bitch. Once he fucked a women though they called him a god, the men just call him bastard. He grinned banishing his headache.
The sharpness in Linc’s voice told him of his concern. He grinned even more. Damn straight with a name like Zeus he better have no weakness. His adopted mother loved Greek mythology and thought his gray eyes reminded her of lightning storms. “I’m fine. No worries.”
“So?” Linc prompted. Don’t leave me hanging. You have to leave now but we can walk and talk.”
Ze shook his head. “Nothing to talk about. I’ll be flying out soon and in twenty-four hours this deal will be locked and we’ll have in roads into a billion strong market. The money we sank into the Asian lobbying firms worked.”
“For a fucking change it will be our products in the Chinese market and not the other way around.” Not that they always conducted business within the red tape, this time it was the only way to go since it also meant dealing with the Triad. He did whatever was necessary for the country or products he dealt with.
“I hear that. The planes all ready, the pilot’s on board.”
“Good.” Most of the time Ze preferred to drive himself, but since he was heading for the airport and planned to be gone for about a month. Two weeks in China and Hong Kong, then another couple of weeks in their office in London, he let Linc take him to go over anything last minute.
“Oh, I almost forgot you’ve got a passenger.”
“Remember, we signed up as part of the Angels In The Air Program, if we’re flying anywhere in the world where someone needs to go for medical care we agree to give them a free ride.”
“Yeah, right,” Ze nodded. “Brilliant move on my part. It was part of the deal that got us those medical contracts.” Along with the very timely death of their chief competitor. Something that Ze had nothing to do with, this time. “Okay. I hope it’s not a sick kid flying by themselves, shouldn’t at least one parent be with them?”
Linc shook his head. “Yes, all minors are required to travel with a parent or adult guardian.” He pulled out his phone and must have checked the information he had on the passenger. “In this case it’s an adult. Kassia Jamison. She’s twenty-eight and terminal. There’s a doctor in China who’s had good results with a radical treatment the US and other countries haven’t approved yet.”
“Figures. All right.”
“So try to be charming.”
Ze snorted. “Like hell. I’m going to be busy going over my notes. I’m assuming she’ll be settled in the front of the plane and leave me alone in the rear to work.” He’d had the plane outfitted so that the rear was almost like an office. Everything he’d need to work. And if he needed to take a nap on the flight there were eight seats that unfolded into beds to choose from. Four toward the front near the cock pit there was also a kitchen and bathroom there, the flight attendant sat up there. Then four seats in the center, then a bedroom and office area in the rear, with its own bathroom.
Once he was on board he planned to say the obligatory, hello, to his passenger move to the back and get in a few hours of work, then sleep for a couple before they landed. He had his pills with him and hoped this time around when he closed his eyes sleep would claim him for a few. In the last month, he had a collective total of maybe a hundred hours, but he did manage to get a lot of work done and things finalized for this deal with the Chinese government. However, those sleepless nights were starting to show.
At six five and two hundred pounds of muscle even his frame was beginning to show signs of fatigue. Those lines at the corners of his eyes and around his mouth weren’t from stress but lack of sleep. He rubbed his hand over his face and glanced at the airport terminal coming into view.
Ze and Linc took care of some last minute details then shook hands. He took the few steps needed to get him to the plane and climbed up. The captain and second pilot who also acted as steward were there to greet him as soon as he stepped on board.
“Morning, sir, welcome aboard,” Dick Peterson his captain said.
“Thank you. Good to see you Dick, hi Pilar how’s the family?” He’d flown with both many times over the last two years since he’d bought the jet.
“Doing great, sir. Thanks for asking. Our passenger is on board. After you get settled is there anything you’d like me to bring you.”
“I’m good for now, but maybe some of those sweet crescents in about an hour.”
They both nodded. “Well I’ll let the tower know we’re ready,” Peterson said and moved back to the controls.
Moving past them Ze spied someone sitting toward the middle of the plane in one of the window seats, the passenger no doubt. He sighed inwardly, he hoped she didn’t expect him to keep her company during the flight. He hated social chit chat, even when he had to do it for business. He was just about to offer a quick hello and let her know if she needed anything just ask Pilar.
His words wouldn’t come out. The woman was leaning forward, a mop of short curly hair adorned her head, her face turned toward the wing of the plane so away from him. His first thought was pleasure, at least she wasn’t bald and he liked the short curls the way they caught the early rays of the sun tinting it red, gold, and brown. He wondered if they’d be soft to the touch. What the fuck?
Just as he drew in breath she turned, for some reason he forgot to let the air out of his lungs. He didn’t know if he blinked or not but suddenly the plane, even the woman in front of him disappeared and he stood before a lake. No longer did he hear the soft hum of classical music piped through the sound system, in fact he was no longer even on the plane.
The sun was just setting, casting its shadowy fire to dance upon rippling waves. He stood at the edge of a lake, he’d been there before yet how could he? He stared hard as the ripples it looked like real flames blazing across the surface then the flames slowed, dying down, revealing for him the reflection of a woman. He spun around thinking she stood behind him, but he must have blinked because he was back on the plane. Staring at the features of the woman whose reflection was that of the woman in the water, but this one was of flesh and bone. What the fuck?
Copyrighted 2016 LaVerne Thompson