Heaven was narrower than I'd expected.
No choir of angels, no pearly gates, there wasn't really much of anything. Just an eight by three by four glowing white box, devoid of any thing except a film of mucous like white fluid covering my entire body.
It would have been kind of gross if it didn't feel so nice. The space hummed with the Turkic thumping of my heart as I relaxed into the calming oblivion of the light. The collected tension of decades was gone, my aches and pains wiped clean. I couldn't move more than a few inches in any direction, but then again I didn't actually want to. Within this floating womb I wanted for nothing.
As afterlives went, it was pretty nice. Perhaps a bit boring, but nice. No real sense of time or urgency, no pain, I guess I could work with this. An eternity of full body Novocain? It could be way, way worse.
As afterlives went, it was pretty good.
"Your imagination is sadly limited, my host."
I sat up in surprise at the fallen angel's voice, banging my head against the ceiling hard and sweating loudly. The sharp concussive sensation melted away, as painless as it was startling.
"Do try to keep yourself in one piece," she chided exasperatedly. "There is no need for more self flagellation."
Oh come on! What had I done to deserve am eternity in a box with a freaking fallen Angel? I groaned, trying to ignore a laundry list of various sins to my name that probably warranted that exact punishment. So I wasn't perfect, sue me. Buy even for me that felt excessive.
Heck I died for a good cause didn't I.
"Really my host? You haven't worked it out guy yet?" Lash tittered in amusement.
No, I hadn't. So I'm not perfect, alright? Jeeze Louise, cut the dead wizard a break. I've earned a bit of peace in the hereafter.
Lash snorted in a way that seemed to undignified for an angel, even a fallen one, before bursting into a fit of the giggles.
Now that was just rude.
"Honestly my host..." She hiccuped, stifling her mirth. "You really must learn to see the transparently obvious with more clarity. Do you honestly believe that you're bound for a place where I-" she corrected herself abruptly, "- she can reach you. "
Holy pronouns batman, that was new. The shadow was referring to herself as a different person from the fallen... Huh?
"You aren't dead, my host." Lash snapped irritatedly.
OK Harry, the pronoun thing was a touchy subject, table that one for later. Wait? How was I not dead? Last I checked blowing up a god with the force of a freaking claymore whilst the aforementioned deity was piggybacking on your freaking spine tended to cause a terminal case if exploding head. Between the blood loss, the brain trauma, and the heat I should be D-E-D dead.
Wizards are tougher than mortals are but even we react badly to blowing ourselves up from the inside. And yet, here I was, talking, thinking - alive. It was impossible.
"Of course you died wizard," The shadow clipped her tones patronizingly, as one might address a particularly slow child. "You were excessively thorough in your attempts to end your own life."
Well that made things clear as mud.
"Does this energy not feel familiar to you my host? Have you not felt it before?"
Uh. Actually, come to think of it it did seem familiar - but where - oh hells bells, no!
"Hells bells yes, my host. Hell's bells yes."
The cool feeling of contentment swaddling my entire body was something it felt recently before, when it had been forced upon me by Bizzaro Bob. It was the touch of death, the caress of necromancy. A seductive kiss of evil, horrible unlife.
Holy shit! I wasn't freaking dead.
No, no - groaned to myself in desperation - no, no, no, no, NO! This was bad. This was so bad it defied belief.
Necromancy wasn't just black magic, it was the black magic. It was the number one no-no on the white councils shit list. Killing with magic might be the wizard's first law, buy fucking with death held a special place of universal despise.
And it was back because of it. I'd been brought back from - wait? Oh, Hell's bells...
Had Heka been revived as well?
A jolt of fear ran up my spine as I tried to feel the oily touch of the Egyptian deity. I felt nothing, but then would I?
"No," growled the fallen in satisfaction, a sadistic tone of glee dancing in her voice. "Not while they were in the casket. The pretenders seem to delight in the terror of their hosts, allowing them control in these brief moments of purgatory. But fear not, my host. The usurper is quite dead. Gone to whatever afterlife his kind endure. His ashes are far from the resurrection sarcophagus."
Sarcophagus? Like Sarcophagus-sarcophagus? Mummies, curses, the whole nine yards sort of sarcophagus? That was.... awesome! Tacky, but freaking awesome.
"Its a theme," Lash sounded unimpressed. "The usurper's are nothing if not fond of tradition and ritual. They draw authority from ceremony."
How long had I been dead for? It was an odds to imagine that I essential hadn't been for a while. It was hard to imagine not well - being. I was used to "being". I was good at it. I had a lot of practice living. Not living was just.... weird.
"Hours perhaps? I only live when you do my host." The shadow pondered the matter for a moment. " Yes, only a matter of hours. They would not have waited long to help you."
Oh... that was good. Then who brought me back?
You know what, to heck with who - How? Necromancy wasn't something you could just do on the spot. It took power, serious magical oomph, to even start to resurrect the dead. Just bringing back a mindless servant like a zombie or a ghost was hard and that could take a shitload of prep-time. I couldn't even begin to imagine the power necessary to drag a intact soul back to its body from the afterlife hours after it died.
We were talking old school magic, the sort that was rooted in blood and death and suffering. The sort of magic where sacrificing virgins was probably one of the less squicky parts of the ritual.
"The rules of moral magics are fluid my host. A sacrifice of power is not necessarily a sacrifice of innocence. The usurper's knowledge is stolen from the bones of the Eden that was, bastardized remnants though they may be the ferromancies of Eden are not bound by the rules you know," she tutted in annoyance, possibly because she couldn't outright dismiss their efficacy. " Their items are largely a collection of ritual objects and ancient sciences. The mortal servants of the usurper's understand no more that you understand the internal workings of your television, but activating it's necromantic powers only requires minimal talent with the ritual."
"But why save me and not him?" I asked the obvious question.
I felt the tingling impression of Lasciel's haughty smirk, "Because, my dear host, he only told them part of the rituals workings to prevent any one of his followers from growing too powerful."
So I was alive because Heka was too much of an untrusting prick to explain how to save his life? Thank God for arrogant assholes!
"Yes, He did seem determined to make most of creation in His us own image, didn't He?" Lash spoke in a voice of millennial exhaustion.
Did lasciel just crack a joke? A blasphemous one, but an actual joke? Miracles do happen.
"I an not without humor, my host. Though I suspect the legion of Jaffa outside the sarcophagus are not of equal cheer," she grunted in discomfort. "I must- I must rest- I've extended my powers beyond what I was designed for. I must recover, regroup."
OK, I thought back, keenly aware that I was naked, unarmed, and soon to be outnumbered by a whole mess of angry non-humans. Uh, what do I do?
"Don't die," she grunted unhelpfully, her voice sleepy and mellow as the roof to the sarcophagus parted and a chill whipped past my naked privates.
I put on my the most wizardly scowl I could manage and stood up, pooling add much of my energies so that I could overcome a room full of Jaffa. I screamed a challenge at the top of my lungs as I came face to face with - uh - with and what appeared to be a boy in his teens and a serving girl in a decidedly revealing garment of sheer silk.
The pair of them nether flinched in surprise at my outburst note did they willingly make contact with my eyes, standing at attention with a basin of soapy water and a clean towel in their arms.
I stood there awkwardly dripping mucus down into the floor with my fists raised like a boxer, before lowering them and saying, "Uh... Hi." because I had took start somewhere after all.
The voice that came out of my throat was not the deep baritone I've had for most of my life. it was harsh, angry, metallic. It was the voice of the dead god. I guess not every part of him got turned extra crispy.
"Do you wish for us to bathe you milord?" The young woman whispered, "or shall we bring one of your playthings first?" Her voice hitched with a barely contained note of fear, "Or would this unworthy one better suit your tastes today."
Memories rammed into the forefront of my mind, lust, pain, suffering - the memories of Heka's favored brand of malicious sporting of the flesh. Looking at the terrified young girl I knew that it was within my power to take what I wanted, what I needed out of her body. I could feel her writhing beneath me as I bit, ripped and tore at her, using her for my amusement and then breaking her so that no other could have her. I felt the predatory need to dominate, to use, to command, throbbing in my mind.
I felt a phantom sensation of fingers dragging the horrible urges to a dark corner of my mind, with an angry whisper of "oh no you don't" that was gone as fast as it had came.
Lash didn't want Heka to even begin to have a place in my mind.
Fine, neither did I.
"Milord" the woman flinched in fear, unsure how to interpret my confused expression. I grabbed the towel from her and wiping the vicious fluid from myself. The woman squealed in a tone as baffled as it was terrified.
"My...lord?" Probed the confused young man, his voice too high pitched for his age. I flinched briefly in sympathetic pain, the boy was an eunuch. Poor kid.
He continued in his high pitched fearful whisper, "Are you well milord?"
He wanted to think I was his god? Fine. He could get his god some pants.
"Where are my clothes?" I asked in the most non threatening voice I could muster, the metallic booming edge to my voice echoing within the high ceilinged chamber. Ok, so the new Darth Dresden voice was kind of cool... I admit it. Though what it meant about me I really didn't want to know.
I tabled that freak out for later as I growled, "Clothes." In my mechanical basso.
The woman approached me with an elegant garment of silk and ivory, a robe for for a king. Any one of the thumb sized rugby buttons might have been worth a year of my salary. Jesus, Heka's wardrobe had to be worth the GDP of most countries.
And I wanted none of it. "Not these clothes. My hosts' clothes."
"Milord?" The eunuch shook his head in confusion.
"Where are they?"
"You- "the woman swallowed fearfully " - you ordered them destroyed milord. Nothing of the host remains by your decree."
My things... Gone... My coat, my pendant, my staff.... Oh God, Bob! I was screaming before I knew it, towering over Heka's cowering servants in incoherent fury. Bob was my oldest friend, the closest thing I'd had to family for newly a decade. He couldn't be dead, he just couldn't.
"They might still be in storage milord!" The eunuch prostrated himself on the floor in terror. "I- we- the servants were only tasked with that duty this morning. It might not have come to pass."
"Take me there. Now!" My blood boiled and rage flashed across my eyes, a slight tingle of power sparkling across my vision. OK, I needed to start making list of weird holdovers from Heka's possession. Vader voice? Check. Glowing eyes? Double check.
I pulled the robe over myself, marching behind the eunuch as he scurried forward, heading down the gaudy halls of the place of the now dead god. Servants averted their eyes and soldiers saluted me as I passed them, wary of their God's ire.
I was too angry to care much. Blood pounded in my ears, setting a furious tempo to my already long shanked strides. the eunuch actually broke into a sprint to keep up with me as I rushed forward, heading for what I knew to be the armory. I don't know how I knew it was the armory and I don't know how I knew the combination to open the door, but I did.
Half naked and still dripping viscous fluid from beneath the hem of my doubtlessly soiled robe, I howled in horror as I watched a Jaffa servant toss my clothes into foundry at the center of the armory.
"Stop!" I pleaded in horror. "Please stop!"
The pair of Jaffa froze in place, not sure how to interpret their "god's" sobbing cry of despair. I rushed over to the box of my things, shoving them your of the way bodily as I lifted the familiar form of a rune covered skull into the air. I hugged it to my chest as I choked in relief. "You're OK!"
The Jaffa were understandably confused, but decades of dealing with the capricious whims of their god had apparently trained them to keep a decent poker face. Though not, apparently, good enough to conceal their surprise when a disembodied skull stared talking back.
"Its about time you came to get me! I was afraid one of these bozos was going to cremate me," Bob sighed in relief, starting up at me with his flickering eye lights. " And what's with the voice? I thought that came bundled with a plus one in the noggin."
"Wait? You know its me?" I blinked in surprise.
"Of course I do, you're not exactly making with the whole seig heil Heka." Bob said in a voice of mild irritation that did nothing to conceal his pleasure at knowing more than I, "Gods don't say please, and they don't forget to button the front of their robes. '"
I looked down and yelped in embarrassment, using the hand not holding the skull to tie the garment shut. "Yeah, well, I was in a bit of a hurry. They had to bring me back to life."
"Come again?" Bob blinked in shock.
"Dead then not dead," I shrugged. "I'm sort of winging it at this point. I didn't have much of a plan past dying. Didn't think I'd need one."
"You're too sane for the lesser undead," Bob tutted in contemplation, teeth wiggling contemplatively. "And you're not a Litche or a hemonculous .. I would see... You... You're alive? Actually alive? That's -" Bob clacked his teeth together in irritation "- that's not supposed to be possible. You're not supposed to come back that fresh, even if you do come back."
"Hey," I barked irritatedly. "Not seeing the downside."
"There's always a downside boss. That's the point of most magic. It's an exchange. Something has to be spent to get something else." He sighed. "Just try to survive when the other shoe drops, eh sahib? I don't fancy another trip to the cremation room."
"Fancy?" I teased, "You don't fancy it?"
"Oh shut up Harry, the natives are getting restless," Bob narrowed his eyes, darting back and forth between the confused looking Jaffa and sizing up biceps the width of my torso. "And I'm thinking they've got a leg up on you oh wizardly - Wait? Why are you bald?"
"Oh come on," I ran my hand over my head in annoyance, "That's just not freaking fair."
"Milord?" Hedged the nervous voice of the Eunuch. His eyes were wide with genuine fear as he stated into the skull's flaming eyes. "What manner of monster is that?"
Holy crap this had to be freaking terrifying for everyone else in the room. The Jaffa were doing a decent job of not totally freaking out as their god had a conversation with a severed head in some unknown language, but the eunuch was just short of pissing himself in fear. To the uninitiated, Bob was not exactly normal.
"He is a spirit of learning," I replied in the Goa'uld language. "A friend who means you no harm, my oldest friend."
I handed the skull to the Eunuch with a warning to be careful with it as I looked into the box and sighed disappointedly. He stared into the skulls burning eyes in terror as I took stock of what I still had to my name.
Bob carried on chatting animatedly in English, "Harry this guy is marked as a slave. When did you get slaves? Are we keeping slaves now? I'm still hazy on the whole "good" and "evil" thing but I was pretty sure keeping slaves was a no-no."
"It's a temporary situation Bob," I replied, furious at what I found. It wasn't as bad as it might have been I supposed. My clothes were gone, but after all the injuries and grit of the Darkhallow I was probably going to just have to burn them anyway. I still had my mother's silver pentacle, my rings, my shield bracelet and my spell enhanced coat, even the gray cloak and cowl of the wardens but my staff had not been so lucky. The burnt remnants of the wooden shaft, covered in traditional ozark folk art, smoldered in the heart of the forge, crackling with bursts of electricity as the runes imbued along it were broken.
Oh that was just perfect.
"Fuck," I yelled at the top of my lungs in the Goa'uld language, causing the Jaffa to jerk in fear, "Fucking shit fuck of a self important shitting fuck head. I cannot believe that prick burned my staff."
"You ordered it milord," The confused Jaffa to my left replied, looking desperately to the Eunuch for confirmation, "It was your will… I - I - I only meant to obey."
"Not you skippy, him." I snarled in irritation, pointing at my head. He blinked in confusion as I busied myself with the job of putting on my shield bracelet and rings and tying my mother's sliver pentacle back around my neck, muttering under my breath in English. "That self important prickish self-made moron of an Egyptian dime store deity wrecked my freaking staff."
"My lord is - I mean to say that you - but -?" The Eunuch blinked in confusion, looking up from the ground as far as he dared without making eye contact. He waved to the Jaffa, barking orders at them in an attempt to appease his irrationally irritated god, "Bring our god his armor and staff!"
Eager to show their loyalty the Jaffa pair rushed over to a thick ebony wardrobe inlaid with the wrapped serpents of Heka, virtually tripping over each other in their haste to appease me. The Eunuch continued to bow deeply, holding the skull above his head reverently as he spoke at my feet. "Master Ul'tak commissioned them to resize your armor for your new body, as well as your new staff of office. It is to the specifications you requested."
The wardrobe opened onto a mannequin of my own substantial height, accurate for my girth and overall lankiness. Dull red metal flecked with black reflected the firelight in odious menace on it's angular carapace-like protrusions of plate, contrasting with the black ringlets of skirted mail weaved into rich black leather at the joints. Where the armor of the Jaffa was rounded and practical this was obviously designed for someone who wanted to look as god damn scary as they could manage.
Heka had believed that he was going to be the biggest badass on the block when he got my body and he picked an armor to match it, complete with talon like hooks tipping his fingers.
Sure it was armor as designed by the Evil Overlord school of fashion but given the choice between it and my current outfit of a soiled kimono, I was going to go with the armor. "Uh, yeah, that will work."
It felt weird stripping naked in front of three strangers. I felt even weirder having the aforementioned strangers worshiping me as they helped me put on the armor. But between chants of purification and some very odd places for armor to fasten, we managed to get me into the Jaffa made armor.
It was… comfortable? Armor wasn't comfortable. Heavy? Yes. Impractical? Sometimes. Gaudy? Usually. But armor wasn't comfortable, it was a rule or something.
Michael's armor was so heavy I could barely lift it but this stuff was almost not even there. I barely even felt it on my body, it was as light as any jacket I'd ever worn though Heka's memories gave me the dull sense that it was more than sufficient to stop a blade or an arrow. Though not, I suspected, the discharge of the lightning weapon now strapped to my left wrist or the ruby foci in the palm of my right hand… or the freaking forcefield I had strapped to my wrist. That memory couldn't be right… could it?
Hot damn I had an honest to god forcefield.
The foci were tinged with that same dull menace of the ones I'd used to fry Heka, centuries of misuse corrupting them as much as empowering them. But they were empowered, boy howdy were they empowered. I opened my wizard's sight to stare at my wrists and flinched at the searing brightness of it, closing my sight as quickly as I'd started it. My arms were no longer flesh, but constructs of crystal and coruscating lightning, weaved together with gears and pistons covered in egyptian writings and runes in languages I did not recognize.
"Nice threads boss," Bob wolf whistled jokingly. "Going crusading later?"
I turned my head to return his snark, accidentally activating the armor's built in helmet. Armor snapped into place out of nowhere around my head and face, a holographic display appearing over the black surface in front of me. Bob yelped in surprise, "Holy moley! Harry that was… that was awesome!"
I turned to one of the polished shields hanging along the wall and came face to mask with myself. The face was not my own, but a blank-faced golden mask, complete with glowing ruby eyes and a sloping set of black cable braids leading down into the neck of my armor. An icon of raised arms on either side of a coiled snake sat dead center in the mask's forehead, the symbol of Heka.
Twisting my chin again, I found the switch to retract the helmet. I didn't like wearing the symbol of the Goa'uld marking me as his property, as his body, and essentially as him. I pulled my sorcerously enhanced jacket and grey cloak over the armor, obscuring the symbols of the dead god from view. I could only barely make out the outline of the armor beneath the jacket and cowl, other than the bald head I more or less recognized the man staring back at me.
My face looked too young by about ten years without the dull outlines of scars and scrapes I'd picked up over the years. Come to think of it I looked like Thomas. The preternatural predatory edge of sexuality my Incubus brother always exhumed wasn't there but without the sort of wear and tear one normally accrued with age I seemed more like a brother and less like an older cousin. Pulling the glove off my crippled hand as the extent of the sarcophagus' effects on my body registered in my conscious mind I whooped in glee, staring at an entirely unharmed appendage. With the exception of the angelic sigil branded into the palm of my skin there was no sign that the Black Court of Vampire had ever wounded me.
I was whole. That was almost worth the trouble of dying.
"Does it please you my lord?" The Eunuch asked as he handed me a heavy staff forged from some metal I couldn't even begin to identify. It was one of the quarterstaffs favored by the Jaffa, oblong protrusions jutting from each end. "Or is something else more fitting of a god?"
As I accepted the staff and felt the slight tingle of power of it's core. A foci, like the gem that Heka had used, I recognized the closed blossom at it's tip as the weapon used by the Jaffa I'd slain. It wasn't my staff, I held no emotional contact with it, but it would be serviceable in the interim.
I reached out for Bob the Skull, cradling my sarcastic companion as I replied, "Heka is dead."
"Yes my lord Heka." The Eunuch replied, bowing deeply. "If my lord Heka says so. Dead and reborn."
"No, just dead," I replied, turning my back on the Eunuch and walking out of the armory. "I'm -- I'm new."
The Jaffa fell into a protective march behind me and the Eunuch as I walked down the most likely looking corridor to lead to the outside. The familiar nagging tug of memory told me that it was the direction I needed to go in, though I couldn't even begin to say why. The Eunuch continued to follow me, head bowed, probing to see how he could best serve his "god."
"I do not understand my lord. You stand here before us in flesh and blood. You are alive my lord god Heka, showering us with your resplendence."
"Look - I don't mean to burst your bubble, uh, what is your name?" I replied to the Eunuch. "You, uh, do have a name right?"
"Amun milord, it is the name you gave me when you took me from my parents at birth to become your Lo'Tar," The Eunuch replied in a hurt voice. "I have served you since I was five."
"No, you served Heka for decades. And Heka has gone on to the great beyond." I tapped my head as we rounded a corner, startling a group of idle Jaffa playing some sort of gambling game using the bones of chicken. The hopped up to attention, strewing the chicken bones across the floor in their haste. I hopped over them as I said, "It's a singe occupancy head up here."
"You test my faith my lord god Heka I know that there is no greater power than you in this universe." The young boy replied earnestly. "You bring healing and magic to the universe. You command the impossible and the unknowable Sheshaw, the glorious and forbidden libraries of the Rw. All the knowledge of the world is yours."
"Kid, there isn't anybody in charge of magic and if there was it most certainly wouldn't have been the snake," I sighed in irritation. There had to be a way of letting these guys know that their god wasn't in my head without having to fight them. It wasn't their fault they served a genocidal jerk-wad. "Magic isn't something that one guy runs it just kind of is. And nobody can know everything. Magic is just to broad for that."
The Eunuch nodded with wrapped attention as I continued my rant, opening the wide double doors before me with a swipe of his hand over a metal plate.
"I mean what proof has this guy… given… that… oh boy." I trailed off as the doors opened into the most expansive library I'd ever seen. "I mean wow, just wow."
A space easily the size of three football fields stretched out in every direction from a raised platform at the center, a tiered set of book shelves and platforms reaching as far as the eye could see. Thick scrolls of papyrus and dusty leather-bound tomes sat next to long crystals glowing with the slightest hint of electricity, all wrapped with the musty scent of knowledge any proper library had. Bob peeked out from my pocket as I went silent, his yellow eye darting back and forth around the room in shock, "You take me to the most interesting places Sahib."
"Bob are these what I think they are?" I gasped.
"If you think they're a collection of ancient, probably evil, ritual magics and ferromancy from the Egyptian Gods… then yes." The skull shifted slightly in my pocket as Bob used his teeth to re-arrange himself "Harry. This entire room is warded, badly done but definitely warded. Don't touch anything you didn't want to light on fire unless you know how to get past the wards."
"My lord Heka," A stocky figure at the center of the room waved to me, eagerly motioning towards the center of the library. "This way my lord."
I stormed across the room towards the familiar form of the waving man, ignoring bowing scribes and prostrating librarians as the blood pounded in my ears. I don't remember walking across the room, nor do I remember handing my staff and skull to the Eunuch, there is a good minute and a half of my memory just missing from where my single minded rage seared it out.
My only concrete memory between seeing the man at the center of the room and punching him in the nose is of his look of surprise as he looked into my glowing eyes. He staggered back from my punch, unsure how to react.
"My lord?" He dropped to his knees. "How have I failed you?"
I wanted kick the son of a bitch in the face. He'd left me to die, served me up on a fucking platter for a god of necromancy. I could kill him, kill all of them, and they'd deserve it. They were thralls, inhuman servants of the ancient gods. His men, his flesh, meat to stand between him and those who opposed him. They were nothings that were second to his glory. His majesty his ---
"Harry!" A furious Angel thundered in my head. "This is not you!"
I shook my head, clamping down on the sides and grunting as I felt the phantom fingers of the fallen angel scraping across the insides of my mind, tearing the viscous urges from me. Heka's memories, Heka's desires -- oh hellfire, I'd acted upon them.
Ul'tak, betrayed me, but I didn't despise him as my inferior. I did not feel that he was my chattel. That was the monster I'd slain hours ago. The monster who lived in my head even after death it would seem. That was deeply troubling.
Ul'tak probed my silence with a nervous, "My lord?"
"You tried to feed me to him." I growled. "To Heka, so that he could own me. I am not freaking real-estate for some supernatural snake creature."
The First Prime sighed exasperatedly, "My loyalty to you has not changed my Lord Heka. I did not doubt you the seven times I have seen your resurrection and I do not doubt you now."
"For the love of --- I am NOT HIM." I pointed at my head, "Single occupancy, no snakes allowed!"
"Sokkar has called for a meeting of his vassals milord. I've taken the liberty of preparing your flagship for space flight," He pointed to a device upon his wrist, "The mother ship is ready to travel to hyperspace upon your arrival through the ring teleporters."
I blinked and concentrated upon Lasciel, surely she'd mistaken the meaning of that last part in her struggle to suppress the memories of the fallen god. Because there was no freaking that--
"No my host it is correct," the strained voice of Lasciel whispered, "The ferromancies of the Goa'uld allowed them to sail the stars."
I cleared throat and asked "Are we on Earth?" though the words came out as "Are we on the first planet of men?"
"No... no milord that planet is weeks away." Ul'tak's voice colored with just a hint of worry. "Does my lord desire to spend more time in the healing sarcophagus?"
"No... no I -- take me too the ship," I replied realizing that my solution was right in front of my nose. "We're going on a trip."
Ul'tak tapped his wrist, summoning a cluster of hovering rings from the floor beneath us. I squinted my eyes as a brilliant flash of white light flared from the inside of the rings, briefly blinding me as they receded into the floor. As I blinked the stars out of my eyes I suppressed a fanboyish squeal of glee.
Bob actually gaped in astonishment, the lower jaw to his skull hanging open as he said, "Boss this is way above my pay-grade."
A teleporter. I just got to ride a freaking teleporter this had officially become the best day... ever. The First Prime and Lok'tar, apparently unnerved by my manic grin of positive glee, exchanged a covert look of worry. Neither of them dared voice their confusion at my behavior but both had clearly realized that something was wrong with their god.
Good, I still needed them for the moment. They knew how to fly the ship.
I followed Ul'tak through the needlessly gaudy halls of the ship, through rooms of gold leaf murals and marble statuettes of the egyptian deities and finally onto the bridge. The Jaffa soldiers averted their eyes from me, huddling deferentially in alcoves and corners to not catch the ire of their vengeful god. They were as terrified as they were loyal.
The bridge was just a lesser version of the palatial throne room on the planet below. A tall throne of jet black stone and precious gemstones sat in the center of the ship's command hub, raised from the ground on a pillar covered in Heka's greatest achievements in testament to the former god's endless narcissism.
I looked away from the throne, shaking head in disgust. Christ that guy had been an epically self absorbed prick. How could anyone waste their time on writing about themselves when they had the whole universe at their fingertips, and the beauty of the universe right in front of their face.
I used to dream about going to space, it was this vast endless expanse full of adventure and strange races. I would look out at he stars through Ebenezer's telescope and just imagine hopping from star to star. My dreams of being an Astronaut died early. Wizards could not hope to operate anything more sophisticated than a toaster without it going on the fritz... or so I'd thought.
The wide holographic display of the reddish rust colored planet beneath was entirely unaffected by me walking up to it and caressing the face of the planet with my fingertips in wonder. I was in space.
This. Was. Awesome!
I turned to Ul'tak, unable to conceal my giddiness as I said the words I'd been dying to say since I was eleven years old, "Set in a course for Earth. Maximum warp."
"My Lord, Sokkar has commanded that we attend the conference. The consequences of not arriving would be --" Ul'tak swallowed his next words at an angry flash from my eyes. "Forgive me my lord -- I ... I was not thinking. It is not my place to question you."
He nodded to the Jaffa at the helm, "Inform the alkesh, we move upon the first planet, immediately."
"Belay that order Jaffa." A feline purr of a voice echoed within the confines of the bridge, the words reverberating with a force that actually left a chill in the air. "Your God has other debts to pay."
I had never in all my life been happier to hear the voice of Mab, Queen of Air and Darkness.