It was strangely hard, giving something so insignificant as my shop over to the younger generation. If you had told me what my fate was back when I was a young god, there's no way I would have believed you, not even if the words passed Tubdur's own lips, the God of Fate himself. My life was a solitary one, be it living amongst the gods or living amongst the mortals. Now my human form was growing older, and it was time I retired. I opened the door to my tool shop and turned on the lights. Rows of rows of my creations spread out before me. A soft smile crept onto my face. People avoided me like the plague...until they needed something. Then they came crawling to me, only to spite me after they got what they wanted. It was the way of life. But there was one thing I took joy in doing. And that was making things. The heat of the fire, the way the metal glowed when heated, the hissing of steam as I cooled it and the way the hammer felt in my palm. The way the metal bent to my will as I pounded it. Ah yes, there was nothing else like it. Such satisfaction. However, my joints were growing old, and I had very little power left in me to hold back the gradual deteriorating of my mortal-like body. I didn't have to wait long for Aswathi to come. He was a middle-aged man, still a lot younger then my mortal form. We shook hands and I left him the keys before leaving. I felt a tug as I walked the bustling streets. Nostalgia rushed over me. It'd been so long since I last felt the pull of a prayer. Who on earth was praying to me? I found myself walking toward my old temple. It had long since been remodeled as a mausoleum under another god's name. How irksome. It was quite in the cool halls, some people visiting loved ones passed. I zeroed in on one woman. Elderly, older then my mortal form. She was still praying. 'Please. Ydum, answer my prayer. Lend me the time to fall in love.' She...wasn't of the living any more. She was so full of regrets that she had become a ghost, unable to move on. What a sad existence. ~What the hell.~ I thought, adopting the human phrase. I approached her.
"Sadb." I whispered her name.
She gasped and turned wide dark eyes on me. 'Who...who are you?'
"Someone who can help you."
Tears filled her elderly eyes. 'Truly?'
I nodded, "Truly."
'Oh thank you!' She hugged me, her skin and cloths cold as ice. She backed off and wiped her tears away. 'What is your name?'
"Ydum, God of Fire and Crafting."
She stared, wide eyed. 'G-God.' She bowed deeply. 'Thank you so much for answering my prayer.' I guided her up and kissed her forehead, transferring my power into her. It streaked from me painfully and my vision spiraled before going black.
I groaned as I gradually came awake, my body aching. "M-Morning." I heard a timid voice say and twitched my ears. Someone was holding me.
"Wh-what?" I tried to blink my eyes open.
"Ydum are you okay?" I was starting to remember as I looked around the dim alley we were in. Sadb was much younger now, though I didn't have enough power to place her in her teens like she was thinking, she was around 30 now, instead of in her late 90s.
In doing so, I spent almost all of the power I had, and I reverted back to my animal form. A jackal with a snake tail....essentially I looked like a giant rat. "Aren't you afraid to hold me?"
She was confused. "Why should I be?"
"Huh. Anyway, we should get you settled, and those old cloths aren't helping your figure much." A blush rose to her tan cheeks. "Alright." I said, jumping down from her arms and onto my own, slightly shaky legs. "Let's go to my place." I took her through the streets, receiving strange looks from people passing by but ignoring them. I had a pretty nice apartment even though I was just a tool shop owner. I showed her where I'd hidden the extra key and we walked into my home. It was a far cry from my temple or my home in the god realm, but it was comfortable non-the-less and much more than some humans had. I had learned to not complain, things could always get worse. "Alright." I said, sitting and curling my tail around my paws. "First we are going shopping. You need more modern cloths if you want to catch the eye of anyone." Again her cheeks flushed and I smirked. "There is money in that jar over there on the kitchen counter." She went to it and retrieved the money. "Good. Now first we need to find a collar and leash for me. Then I can forge you some documents saying I'm your seeing-eye-dog..." Maybe. I wasn't at all confident I had enough power to do that. I also wanted to put a glamor on myself to look more like a normal dog...but I wasn't sure I could do that either. I sighed to myself. How troublesome. How on earth was I supposed to make Sadb's wish of finding love come true if I was completely powerless?
She nodded, "I understand." We left and I guided her to a pet shop where we purchased a teal collar and leash with white dog bones on it. It was a bit...degrading to wear such a thing. I was a god....wearing a little bone collar.... I tried to stifle my feelings and focus.
'Pick me up Sadb.' I sent my thoughts to her. She jumped in surprise but gingerly picked me up. I sighed and shut my eyes as I focused. I don't know if my attempt to create the documents worked or not before I passed out once again.
I awoke to dark eyes staring at me in a pretty face and jumped, only to see it was Sadb sitting beside the bed, leaning her face down on the quilt as I lay there. "Sadb don't scare me like that."
She smiled an apology as she leaned up. "Sorry, but I'm glad you're awake. Are you okay?"
"Yes." It was quite embarrassing to have the worry of a mortal. "Did we get the seeing-eye papers?" She nodded. "Good. Now let's go shopping." I jumped off the bed only to pause when her stomach growled. "Ah."
Heat flew to her face. "Sorry!"
I coughed a laugh. "It's alright. Help yourself to anything you can find in the kitchen." Sadb seemed to be comfortable whipping up food for others as she quickly traversed my kitchen and made us both sandwiches. I didn't realize I was hungry until I started eating.
Afterward I took her out shopping. There was some commotion every time we tried to enter a shop but after we showed the documents I had managed to create, we were left to do as we will. Buying Sadb cloths though turned out to be quite trying. Everything felt scandalous to her. It was a little amusing. After forcing her to buy some cloths we retreated to my home where I coaxed her into wearing a pair. She was such a shy girl and you could tell by her posture just how uncomfortable she felt in the lacy tank and shorts I got her into. She was quite cute. Now we just had to catch the eye of the right guy. "Alright." I said, jumping up onto the counter and sitting with my tail curled around my paws, shaking my head at the feel of the collar around my throat. "What is it you enjoy doing?"
"Uh, um..." She tentatively spoke, wringing her hands and looking around nervously before rubbing her bare arms for comfort. "I-I'm actually really good at a'nazaha wa-tahtib."
I was impressed, though my jackal face didn't show it and she looked at the ground in shame. A'nazaha wa-tahtib or just Tahtib as it was referred to modernly, was a style of fighting with something like a short-staff. I never would have guessed that would come out of this meek woman's mouth. "Interesting." I slid off the counter. "Alright, next stop is a Tahtib school. We're enrolling you." She was quiet but seemed a bit upbeat as she followed me to the nearest gym. We looked and found a class, signing her up for both a gym membership and Tahtib class....which I had to create an ID for her and fainted again, but only for a few minutes this time, thank the gods. I listened while the receptionist told Sadb about a get together of the Tahtib Club that night and encouraged her to come. Blushing fiercely, Sabd agreed. ~Good for her.~ I thought, strangely proud of this human I had just recently met. When we got back home Sadb was a flurry of activity, going through all the cloths I had forced her to buy and looking at them pressed against her in the mirror. I jumped on the bed, laying down and yawning as she fretted. Finally I spoke up. "Don't worry about it so much Sadb. What you have on now is perfectly acceptable."
"Ar-are you sure?" I glanced at her and she snapped her mouth shut.
"Yes I'm sure." I said with a sigh, then laid my head down for some much needed rest.
A familiar scent wafted through the air, making my stomach growl. I raised my head sleepily and sniffed the air. Koshari. Yum. I slipped off the bed and trotted into the kitchen where Sadb was setting the table. I jumped up on a chair pulled out for me. "Don't eat too much, you'll undoubtedly be going to a restaurant at this get-together."
Sabd nodded. "Okay." She watched me get up on the table with my front paws and gobble up the Koshari.
I nodded to her, licking my lips. "It is very good." I watched her face brighten at the praise. We didn't have to wait long before we left for the meeting place of the Tahtib Club. First they went to a restaurant and introductions were made. I studied the people at the table. Good, there were some good looking men not too much younger than Sabd. Half-way through the meal, she excused herself to the restroom...which I had to accompany her as her seeing-eye dog. ~You've got to be kidding me.~ Before we got there though, one of the guys from the club stopped us.
"Hey, how about we ditch the others and get to know each other better?" ~Great, the first attention we attract is one night stand material.~ I thought sarcastically. He wasn't even that handsome with curly dark hair and a bit of a mustache going on. Not that looks were everything, but this guy just screamed creepy. And hey, who was I to judge? My mother threw me off a mountain when I was a baby because I was ugly for a god. Gods were never ugly...except for me.
"Uh, um, okay." Sabd said shyly. ~Oh dear.~
The man grabbed her arm and yanked her between him and the wall of the hallway leading to the bathrooms. "Why don't we start now?" He towed her into the men's bathroom and locked the door. I stayed close to them, but did nothing else so far. Sabd was her own person, I couldn't do everything for her. She had to figure out what she wanted and defend herself. The man pushed her up against the white tiled wall and she dropped my leash from her limp fingers. Sabd was in shock, she closed her eyes and looked away, shaking. The man smirked and leaned forward, sucking on her neck. She squeaked and opened her eyes wide. My patience was running thin. Oh, were we going to have a long talk after this... I growled, leaping up and buried my sharp fangs into the arm holding her captive. He screamed and backed up. I pulled my head down, ripping his skin open as I dropped back down onto the tiled floor. "You fucking mutt!" He screamed holding onto his bloody limb and stepping toward me, fury in his eyes. Sabd stepped forward and slammed her fist into his stomach, making him double over. She scooped me up and dashed out the door. She was breathing heavily and shaking in the hallway leading to the bathrooms. I scrambled out of her arms and rushed for the woman's bathroom. 'This way Sadb.' She took a breath and followed me, locking the door as soon as she could. I sighed and sat, looking up at her. She wouldn't meet my gaze. ~Well, that's okay I guess.~ We stood like that for a while until she felt more safe, then we high-tailed it back to my apartment. She still seemed rattled and quiet as she sat stunned on my bed. I sighed and leapt up next to her.
"Go to sleep child." I grabbed some of her shirt in my teeth and pulled, tugging her over onto the bed. She curled up and just stared. After a moment I curled up against her and stayed there until she finally drifted off near dawn. I let her sleep as much as she needed. Thought about making breakfast, but that was impossible for me in this form. She gradually woke up late morning and got freshened up. I went to the kitchen and jumped onto the counter to wait for her. She came back, her hair still wet and attempted to smile at me before going about preparing lunch. "Now Sadb," I said gently, "Don't let what happened get you down Lass. There are all kinds of people in this world and you're going to run into bad apples."
"I was so desperate I went along with him." She whispered the words lowly, ashamed. I considered her as she meekly moved around the kitchen. I thought long and hard on what I could or should say to her, but as she finished up making the molokhia, I decided to leave well enough alone. She was way past being an adult, she could work it out on her own. I jumped down from the counter and over to the table to eagerly await my meal. She was more quiet than usual for the rest of the day and that night she was restless, tossing and turning before she slipped out of the apartment. Curious, I followed her. She seemed to just be taking a walk to clear her head. She headed to the nearby park in a daze. Suddenly, she looked around, appearing lost. I snickered to myself. I'll admit, she was entertaining. She continued walking, looking around and stumbled upon a man sitting on one of the benches listening to his phone with earbuds.
"Hello." He was an average looking man with short-cropped hair. He pulled out his earbuds. "I thought I was the only one who knew this spot."
"Huh? Oh, sorry to intrude. I'll be going." Sadb stuttered nervously.
"Oh, it's fine. It's not like I'll say finders-keepers."
"I-I don't want to be a bother."
"It's fine, it's fine. Don't worry about it." The man said cheerily. "Why don't you have have a seat?" He said, making room. After thinking about it, Sadb sat down. Seriously, what was I going to do with this girl? They were quiet, the man looking at the stars. "Oh." He suddenly said. "There it is."
"There what is?" Sadb asked, curious.
The man pointed up at the sky. "There."
"Huh?" Sadb looked up, so did I. ~Oh.~ I saw a comet streak across the black background. "Wow." Sadb said in wonder as we all gazed up at the sky. "This is my first time seeing a shooting star."
"This year the conditions are especially good. So it might be possible to see several."511Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡbAuuVYCQTK
"Like a meteor shower?"
"So that's not what brought you out here then." He stated the question, crossing his arm and glancing at her.
"Um, not really. I just needed a walk..."
"And then I got lost." She mumbled, then smiled. "I didn't think anyone would be out here, so I was quite shocked to see you. But I'm glad you offered me a seat, I was able to see something I never had before thanks to that. Do you stargazer alot?"
"Yeah. Whenever I get the urge. There's little lighting here and it's high ground, so you can see very well and there's no trees obscuring your line of sight."
"I see." Sadb said, looking around and I crouched lower in the shrubs as she scanned my way.
"This is my special place." He said softly.
"Oh!" Sadb said excitedly, grabbing his arm as she stared at the sky. "That one was so long, did you see it?"
The man smiled, "I saw it."
"I'm so lucky I got lost." Sadb said, beaming at him.
He chuckled, "I'm glad."
"I hadn't noticed because I was always looking down, but there are so many stars out. It's been awhile since I gazed up at the stars."
The man watched her, "Did something happen?"
She jumped, looking over at him. "Y-you can tell?"
"Yeah. It's in your demeanor. I'll listen if you want to blow off steam."
"You can just spew it out, we're out here alone, it's the perfect chance." She thought deeply about it, then told him what happened at the get-together. She shivered just thinking about it and hugged herself. He touched her hand and leaned in close, then stopped himself as she stared at him. "Where do you live, I'll walk you till you recognize something."
"U-Um, an apartment near here." He nodded and stood, she followed suit. ~How very interesting. Well she's on her way to something here. With this first step into a possible relationship, what shall I do now? I'll gain a little power from her answered prayer, but not enough to gain human-like form again...well...I guess I'll stick with her for awhile yet and see where this new journey of hers leads.~ns 184.108.40.206da2