Dahlia J. Vincent
I have a deep and profound love for poetry and fiction, as well as spirituality and mythos. My heart lies where you are taken into some other time and some other realm. Where all the the creatures we dreams are real - for better or worse.
Weight of the Cosmos
Lyria stood in the candle lit stables sharpening her blade, a heavy sigh escaping her chest. How long had she been doing this? Not the act of sharpening a blade, rather, brandishing one. A life on the run, the life of a hired weapon – it was not the life she was destined to. It was the life she chose as an escape. Can you ever truly outrun your fate? The wind caused the walls to creak and groan. The flame of the candles began to flicker and lash, and she heard the call of the ghost owl as it glided towards her. She felt the soft pulsing hum of almost electrical energy as the owl drew near, perching on the table in front of her. “Oracle.” Lyria heard the owl speaking in her mind. No. She rested her palms on the edge of the workbench and bent forward, trying to block out the bird. “Oracle.” The barn owl tilted its head and let out a soft hoot. Lyria’s vision began to blur as she looked up at what was both a guide and an omen. “NO.” Lyria screamed aloud. “Oracle!” The owl let out a deafening screech. Lyria was ensnared by glowing energy like the Arouras, the flames whipped and then went out – taking Lyria’s sight with it and dropping her into the sight of the divine. The owl took its astral form – shifting into a white-haired celestial goddess, adorned with a crown of twigs and feathers – and her dress flowing with trims of gold like the stars. Lyria was no longer in her worn out trousers or leather bracers – but a ceremonial gown and ornamented with the markings and adornments of the celestial oracles before her. “Oracle. How far do you think those mortal feet will carry you? The divine cannot outrun what awaits them. The calling will follow you, and catastrophe in it’s wake.” Together they saw the wars to come, men and gods alike dying and fighting. Brothers betraying brothers. All kindness overruled by greed, hatred, jealousy, and fear. They gazed upon the fire and famine. Until hardly anything was left but ash and ruin, the sick, the dying, and the dead. “Is this what you would wish upon the realms? Suffering, and death? Each day, each year you try to outrun what and who you are, where you belong, this reality draws closer and solidifies itself all so you can selfishly live a life that was never yours to live.” Lyria grit her teeth, tears of anger stinging her eyes and threatening their descent. “I did not ask for this so-called gift. This curse that follows me. I am my own. Not some tool, or some bargaining chip the gods can barter and sell as a bride. I do not wish to be just a scry, shackled to the divine – for nothing but the sight and to bring about a new generation of ‘heroes’ that go home to the gods or a new oracle to be stuffed into a life she did not choose.” Her words were bitter and cold. Her contempt for the gods and her lineage reverberated through every word. The goddess laughed. “Silly child. Do any of us celestials choose to be born? We are bound to destiny just as mortals are. No being chooses to be one or the other. Little Oracle, you are more than just a pawn – some tool to discard and replace once its spent. Celestials bind one of their own – an Oracle- to the realm of men in order to preserve peace, to communicate, and to keep them linked and grounded to the divine. The ceremonies of the oracle are sacred, they keep chaos at bay. Until you return home to us, your place is alongside the heroes and rulers of men.” “What of love? What of my own heart?” Lyria’s voice was soft and breaking as she thought of Arden – God of the forests. She had loved him, and he had been taken from her, coldly and violently. “Arden’s choice to forsake his betrothed and to try to walk beside you in the mortal realm… the fate he met was the consequence of –” “DESIDIA!” Lyria screamed, as tears fell from her eyes, burning her like hot coals. “Arden was a celestial. Arden was your brother! Yet you talk so coldly. You act as if his death means nothing more than an lesson in rebellion.” Desidia sighed and shook her head as she took Lyria’s hand. “The cosmos is not built on the will of love alone. I tried to guide Arden as I try to guide you now. The perils that await us all far outweigh selfish desire. I lost one brother, should I intend to lose them all? Just because one little Oracle has decided that she does not wish to be bound to fate. I have shown you what will happen, just as I showed you and Arden both the end he would meet if you persisted all for the pursuit of love. Lyria, you will burn us all.” Lyria fell to her knees, the astral plane rippling like water beneath her. It shimmered as her tears fell against it. “Make a choice, Oracle. Defy the fates, pick up your sword, and watch the world perish behind you? Or take your place beside Elios, and preserve the balance?” Desidia gestured with her hands, a door glimmering on either side. “Could you ask me to forsake what Arden died for?” Lyria tilted her head up to the goddess, hot with anger and broken from a wound that threatened to never mend. “Would you believe, that in his nature, Arden would wish to see you and the forests he loved and nurtured burn into nothing, never seeing you again in this life or the next? Does your rage and bitterness blind you from the love you hold? Is desire worth destruction?” Desidia reached a hand down to the Oracle, and she took it – slowly rising. She was jaded, broken, and torn. As the Oracle rose feeling the weight of the cosmos and the burden of her own desires, a choice that would solidify one fate over another had been made.