Darakowe finished the sentence he was writing and carefully closed the book. He rubbed his eyes. That was the fifth battle he had been asked to record in detail this month. He preferred copying to actually writing the history himself, and he preferred the subjects to be amazing groundbreaking feats as opposed to destruction and war. Alas, the inner pull of his Onus was still content with this line of work Aya had given him.
“Darakowe!” Omanja floated into the room, “Darakoweeeeeeee.”
“Yes, Omanja?” The scribe grabbed a metre rule and tried to poke the floating Young Urisha with it, “Come down if you want to speak to me.”
Omanja dropped to the floor with a gentle tap, “Want to go on a trip with me?”
“Because we’ll both get in trouble.”
“It may be okay for you, You’re not a prisoner of war, if I get in trouble I could be put in a proper prison!” Darakowe turned around and began to organise his desk.
“But Mum says: “Darakowe is smart, listen to the stories he tells,”” Omanja said strutting around with hands on her hips imitating Ulukun.
“Then just sit down here and let me tell them,” Darakowe said. He knew this wouldn’t work, they had already got in trouble multiple times for Omanja dragging him out on educational trips, but she still insisted and always got her way, much to his joy.
“Well, I’m not giving you a choice, Mister,” Omanja tapped his knee and he felt his body become weightless.
“Omanja, put me down!”
“Nope,” she floated the pair of them down the corridor and out of an airlock. After they each took a breath and the chamber filled with water, Omanja quickly exited the airlock and shot them to the surface of the water. Darakowe watched the glistening palace shrink and fade into the dakrness of the sea as they rose out of the water and into the sky. Omanja shook her hand slightly and their clothes dried instantly.
“You are one gifted Urisha,” Darakowe laughed in disbelief. Omanja smiled proudly in response and floated them over a desert.
“Have a look at this,” she said stopping over an Underwater Kingdom campsite. Darakowe looked closely and saw a group of rocks at the camps centre – ruins!
“The soldiers found this on their travels?” Darakowe asked Omanja, she nodded and began lowering them down towards the ruins. An Urisha in a watchtower saw them, and raised her horn to her lips, but then paused when she recognised Omanja and waved excitedly before continuing her watch.
They touched the ground and Darakowe had a little wander around the site. He tapped the rock, dusted off some soil and paused as he tried to recall a story to mind that he had transcribed so many times. There were expert storytellers among the Urisha – for some it was their Onus. He, of course, was not one, but he did enjoy telling a good tale every now and then.
“I think I know where we are,” He sat down and motioned for Omanja to join him, “Do you remember Prime Urisha Egengen?”
“The Servant of the End?” Omanja nodded enthusiastically.
“Excellent. Well this city was founded where Xipe, of the Forgotten and Ruin the Eventuality found him.”
“No way!” Omanja floated up into the sky and looked around, “You mean two gods actually stood on this very ground?”
“Wow! Tell me exactly what happened on that day!”
“Egengen. The name sent a chill down the spine of most humans and even some Urisha...” Darakowe began to recite.
Omanja was completely enraptured as Darakowe told the story – a story that very few Urisha know – of Egengen’s origin, soaking up every bit of knowledge she could. When it came to its end, her eyes glistened with excitement.
“That’s so cool, I didn’t know Prime Urisha Egengen was so old!”
“Indeed, he is.”
“Have you ever seen any of the New Gods, Darakowe?”
“No. Have you?”
“Yes,” She began floating skyward, “I once saw The Highmother sitting on a mountain.”
“Yes, the mountain to the south where these soldiers are heading.”
“Whatever were you doing there?” Darakowe asked curiously.
“We have a lab out there, I was visiting with Mum,” Omanja said, “I was floating around the mountain one night and saw her with her horns just sitting and watching, almost like a statue, then she saw me. She smiled, blew me a kiss, and then vanished.”
“Then you are a very special urisha indeed.”
“Will that make it into the records?”
“Do you want it to?”
“Then it shall be so.”
Omanja laughed gleefully, then tapped Darakowe’s leg. They both began to float off. Just before Darakowe fully left the ground, he turned around and swiftly wrote on a piece of paper, “Arguyus Mountains, secret base.” He poured a little power into the paper and it fluttered off into the sky in the direction of the Oruka.
Darakowe was no warrior, but he would help the Oruka in any way he could.
A Divine Plan for the Future
Five years had passed since the first battle, and what a messy war it was turning out to be. It didn’t take long for the majority of humanity to become involved in the conflict. Those who sided with the Underwater Kingdom lived in floating cities or on the coasts, while those with the Oruka hunkered down in the plains, deserts and mountains. Urisha and human alliances had been made and outposts had been set up all over the world to help either side hold their territory. The scale of human loss was incredible, and Urisha, too, were falling in great number. However, the Underwater Kingdom remained dominant.
The New Gods watched with interest.
They mourned the loss of life together, but their differences of opinion remained. They discussed the events of the past century from their joint headquarters hidden on the dark side of the moon. The structure was simple since none of them spent much time there. They had rooms and offices, but most of the base was taken up by the viewing room – a large space consisting of multiple screens and viewing areas from which they could monitor the planet, the universe, and the universal border. As such it was a drab, undecorated and functional space. It was here that they now sat at a round table facing each other.
“The death toll rises,” The Eventuality stated leaning forward, “The Underlands overflow with life energy lacking new bodies to power. Egengen’s Urisha are swamped.”
“The scale is large indeed,” The Flame looked closely at a screen and scrolled through the statistics. Being creatures of divinity, none of these physical actions, or even their presence there, was necessary of course. But they had been born mortal, and still preferred this way of interacting with reality.
“We expected this. Would it not have been worse if we had battled ourselves?” The Highmother tapped her fingers on the table impatiently. This conversation was meaningless, they all knew the effect a worldwide war would have.
The Forgotten spotted her annoyance and chose to change the subject.
“Chronicle, has anything else breached the universe’s border? Anything else popped up from within?”
The Chronicle sat in his huge chair, his eyes glowing a bright blue as he looked through the vast store of information held within his grey-skinned body.
“I see nothing, the universe and planet appears safe for the time being,” The Chronicle’s voice was deep and he always whispered to minimise the rumbling, but each god still felt the sound reverberate around their bones.
“Ulukun and Arunmila’s researchers are both keeping an eye on it too. Neither side has forgotten their duties. Respect the Urisha, Xipe,” The Eventuality said.
The Forgotten held his tongue and sat back, he would not rise to his sister’s verbal slights today.
“What should our focus be then, moving forward?” The Flame asked. As the god of war, he had been busy. He could not favour either side, but he could hasten deaths, whip armies into frenzies to shorten the length of battles, or simply cause a natural disaster when it was clear a battle would benefit neither side.
“We need to prioritise the strength of the planet,” The Highmother said, “Other gods are probably looking at us like fresh meat right now.”
“But how can we do that?” The Eventuality asked, “Any idea, Chronicle?”
“Numbers. Numbers are our biggest problem. The population of humans and Urisha is shrinking and so much knowledge and skills are being lost with them.”
“So, we pump production!” The Forgotten slammed his hand on the table, “Myself and the Highmother can cause a surge in fertility and reduce infant mortality. Humans and Urisha will be born in their twins, triplets and quadruplets. The land will overflow with children for a century to come!”
A glimmer of optimism danced across their faces briefly, as they sat in silence pondering the idea.
“Is this an action you approve of, my dear?” The Flame looked towards the Highmother.
“It seems logical,” she responded to her husband, “Are we all in agreement?”
All four nodded their approval.
“Then it shall be so, we shall make it our goal to increase the population and protect these children as best we can. But we shall continue to abide by the current standards of interference.”
“So, we can’t be too heavy handed on the help then?” The Forgotten mused, “So how are we going to do this?”
“We use our finest resources – the Urisha,” The Eventuality smiled, “And I think I know the perfect person to act on our behalf.” She flicked her wrist and a portal appeared behind her. Through it stumbled a youthful Urisha, his face mischievous and bright with a splash of blue and orange.
“Well, this is unexpected,” the Urisha chuckled and took a knee, “Praise be to the New Gods! I, Bobolu of the Asonu, is ready and willing to serve.”