Gods in Training - Chapter 2 Artemisia | Penana

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Gods in Training
Writer TJ Nyx
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
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Gods in Training
A - A - A
Intro 1 3 4 5 6 7 8
Chapter 2 Artemisia
TJ Nyx
Jun 10, 2018
12 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!EStRA0voKEFSsWIqXT8Mposted on PENANA

         “Artie! Hey Artie!” the voice shouted.copyright protection22PENANA39oAkj56Oi

            “What?” I yelled back.copyright protection22PENANAWtbqkLqQab

            “I’m older than you.” My brother Paul bragged.copyright protection22PENANAuP3WMMnJGw

            “If we’re twins, how are you older?” I asked. We had had this argument for years. Who was older and who was younger. I don’t know why, but being older would make me feel superior somehow, and Paul felt the same way. But our mother doesn’t see the point in telling us who is older, so we have no way of ever finding the answer.copyright protection22PENANAwJFUjZdo61

            “I’m older because I’m smarter, taller, and more awesome.” Paul bragged flexing his biceps.copyright protection22PENANAH2uStPETFO

            “I’m a girl! By definition I’m better.” I shouted at him.copyright protection22PENANA5aE86qVuaC

            “You’re a girl!” Paul shouted feigning bewilderment. “You’re a little too manly to be a girl I think.”copyright protection22PENANA0GlFAFFO4L

            “Whatever Paul. You may be smarter.” No contest, he was smarter. “You may be taller.” More of contest, but he still had me. “And you ARE NOT awesome.” Definitely not a contest. “But I’m the better archer.”copyright protection22PENANAPMOkEhajbP

In my family archery is a huge deal. Both Paul and I are competitive archers, and we live for it.copyright protection22PENANA8gZMp6dlAn

            “You are not the better archer!” Paul shouted. “No way.”copyright protection22PENANAXB4jgEYWs3

            “Prove me wrong.” I challenged picking up my bow. Without waiting for him I ran out behind our house. We had a few targets strung up in the trees. It served very well in deciding who the better archer was for that week.copyright protection22PENANAIiPwDuONN0

            “You ready to watch me shoot some bull’s-eyes?” Paul asked stringing his bow.copyright protection22PENANADVhDIHJW2k

            “How are you going to fit your arrows in with all of my arrows sticking out of the middle?” I asked cockily.copyright protection22PENANAk0Vokc3j9v

            “Shut up and shoot.” He ordered.copyright protection22PENANAmROborFdft

            “Yes sir.” I said drawing an arrow. I took aim and loosed. I hit the target in one of the middle rings, a good warm-up shot.copyright protection22PENANAdSovv7cf4f

            Paul laughed. “Wow.” He muttered. He took her shot. His arrow was a few rings closer in but still no bull’s-eye. Paul shrugged. “I beat you.”copyright protection22PENANAzofvMAIPTS

            “We’re not done yet.” I muttered drawing again. I took my time this go around. I slowed my breathing and glanced carefully down the arrow shaft. When I was ready, I released my hold on the arrow. The bowstring vibrated piercingly in my ear as the missile zoomed forward. I watched almost in slow motion as the arrow flew straight and true. In stuck in the center, not dead center, but still a bull’s-eye. “I beat you.” I said imitating my lovely brother.copyright protection22PENANAlfJar8C6lR

            Paul frowned, which was a good sign. “Two arrows. One dead center, the other splits yours.” He said calling his shot.copyright protection22PENANAzzJY4e6gua

            “No way.” I muttered. Paul was always trying to predict where his arrows were going to land. He rarely got it right though.copyright protection22PENANAw4yMzlmibf

            “Watch Baby Sister.” He said drawing two arrows and fitting them both on his bow. He took aim, after a few seconds he frowned and turned his bow sideways. Then he fired.copyright protection22PENANAaxvUHW3j2p

            “I hate you.” I muttered. This was one of those rare times when Paul actually called the shot. One of his arrows was a perfect bull’s-eye, and the other had shattered my arrow.copyright protection22PENANAaCYUA39HkD

            “All in a day’s work.” Paul muttered. “I win.” He kissed my check and walked back inside.copyright protection22PENANARQHqChLYzX

            I walked up to the target and removed the arrows. My fingers lingered on both mine and Paul’s bull’s-eye. The two holes were mere centimeters apart.copyright protection22PENANAdKuIFcFIwH

            “Almost.” I muttered turning and walking away. Paul usually won, not just in archery. Paul won whatever he ever competed in. He was unstoppable. I turned and drew my bow. I let loose. Argh! Middle rings again. I fired off three arrows in quick succession, one after the other. The cluster was teetering on the outermost ring.copyright protection22PENANA7Hk6BV9KCt

            “Artie?” I turned and saw my mother standing there. “Are you alright?” she asked. That was one more thing me and Paul had in common. We were spitting images of our mother, which is why people had even more trouble telling us apart. The three of us shared shoulder length golden blonde hair, matching green eyes, and the same long straight nose.copyright protection22PENANAnuj4UVlGUV

            “Yeah I’m just practicing Mom.” I said pointing at my arrows sticking out of the target. Mom had this habit of asking if I was ok after Paul beat me in something. But on the occasions that I won she never felt the need to check on Paul.copyright protection22PENANAD8G8Rmlw4R

            “Ok, well there’s someone at the door for you.” My mother said. “He’s on the porch with Paul.”copyright protection22PENANAdcyyjatsU6

            “Who is it?” I asked setting down my bow and coming inside.copyright protection22PENANAWiAgmucIa6

            “I have no idea. I’ve never seen him before. He said his name’s Mr. Pan.” She said. “Does that sound familiar?”copyright protection22PENANAEOekX5GiBL

            “Mr. Pan?” I asked incredulously. “Nope, I’d definitely remember a name like that. Why’s he visiting us?”copyright protection22PENANAaPYIohTRKN

            “Maybe he’s selling some pans.” My mom said giggling a little. Ugh, Mom humor, am I right?copyright protection22PENANAXG5xXs29ac

            I went outside and found my brother and Mr. Pan sitting on our swinging bench. From the looks of this guy he was a business man. He was wearing a collared shirt and a tie that barely appeared under his long brown beard. He had on matching slacks and dress shoes. “Hello, I’m Artie.” I said offering my hand to Mr. Pan.copyright protection22PENANAfO1u9YAPgc

            “Hey there Artie.” He said taking my hand. “Say, what does Artie stand for anyway? Artemis?” he asked. I blushed. There was a reason I wanted to be called Artie.copyright protection22PENANABr2zaqQ3hA

            Paul burst out laughing. “No, it stands for Artemisia.” He was almost crying with laughter. Paul loved beating me almost as much as he loved telling people my real name. I didn't like being called Artemisia, it just sounded so pretentious and elitist to me. I didn't like it, that's why I went by Artie. It was more normal, helped to be just another person. Being a twin, there was a certain comfort, a familiarity for me in blending in.copyright protection22PENANAQfhWNeoPnz

“Hmm, I can respect that.” Mr. Pan muttered.copyright protection22PENANA2Do38x1Ini

            Paul stopped laughing. “Wait what.” I totally didn’t expect him to say that.copyright protection22PENANAVYJXxTnoWF

            “My name’s Pan.” He pointed out. “I like people with diverse names.”copyright protection22PENANAYNVgJIu8xS

            “That’s great sir. But could you still call me Artie?” I was happy that he wasn’t laughing at my name, but that didn’t mean I wanted him to start calling me by it.copyright protection22PENANAHAw5DFDFn0

            “I’ll call you Artie if you don’t call me Pots and Pan.” Mr. Pan said. “People think that’s real funny back home.”copyright protection22PENANAYjYHgvBETy

            “Deal.” I said.copyright protection22PENANAjSme96XEeu

            “So Mr. Pan.” Paul said. “Why did you want to see us?”copyright protection22PENANAxW432IIFn6

            “Well that’s just it.” he said. “I can’t really say.”copyright protection22PENANAFlpD3G9Fk3

            “Why not?” Paul demanded. “Are you from the Army?” Twins do think alike. My dad is an Army Sergeant, and I was just beginning to worry that this Mr. Pan had a telegraph for us.copyright protection22PENANAeEWAS5HPKV

            “No, it’s not that.” Mr. Pan said. “I just need to know if you could commit.”copyright protection22PENANAkhSpkU73Av

            “Commit to what?” I asked.copyright protection22PENANAafRATVg2AA

            “It’s pretty hush-hush so I can’t tell you unless I can count on you.”copyright protection22PENANA6Pf3p786XT

            “What…” I started to say.26Please respect copyright.PENANAIS9LiTK9RY
            “We’re in!” Paul shouted. He was always rushing into things.copyright protection22PENANA2iaVIvQQyq

            “Unfortunately, Artie here needs to consent as well.” Mr. Pan said. “You may be twins, but you each get your own voice. What’d you say?”copyright protection22PENANAlIFdiy8zBJ

            “Come on! It sounds fun.” Paul urged me.copyright protection22PENANAaIypLYxU5v

            “I don’t know.” I muttered. We had just met this guy and he wanted us to commit to something that he refused to explain first. It sounded like a bad situation.copyright protection22PENANAN7NX3wsTm1

            “Well then this is just another thing I’ll be better at then.” Paul muttered snuggly.copyright protection22PENANAjHKYV3x3C9

            “I’m in.” I said gritting my teeth. It wasn’t in my nature to give up without a fight. So I was honor bound to contest Paul in this, regardless of how I felt.copyright protection22PENANAMNRkcCjJwo

            “Ha! I knew that would work.” Paul said smiling. He turned to Mr. Pan. “We’re in, now you need to explain.”copyright protection22PENANAfkw2hzyKsV

            He looked up and saw our mother standing in the window. “How old is that tree?” he asked suddenly standing up. I saw that I was a whole head taller than him now that he was standing up. Mr. Pan walked over to the ancient oak tree in our front yard.copyright protection22PENANAMMDwLyAiBc

            “He’s stalling.” Paul muttered quickly following him.copyright protection22PENANAso0jJcW2Wt

            I looked at my mom and realized that whatever Mr. Pan wanted us for, he didn’t want our mother to know about it. “Maybe I am smarter than you.” I muttered following Paul.copyright protection22PENANAqbNWe5vNPY

            “This is a big tree!” Mr. Pan muttered walking in a circle around the oak. “I just love wildlife. Basically anything outside is my favorite thing.”copyright protection22PENANAIBKl8wTIOv

            “You were saying what all this was about.” Paul prompted.copyright protection22PENANAVhTVAD8xF4

            “Ah, yes.” Mr. Pan said. He cleared his throat. “I might have a job opportunity for you two.”copyright protection22PENANA06gO2uTyiJ

            “A job?” I asked suspiciously. Weird I didn’t fill out an application to Shady R Us.copyright protection22PENANAx0limtOgbD

            “Yes, you are committed correct?” Mr. Pan asked again.copyright protection22PENANAL7UF2via2Y

            “Yeah.” Paul said quickly. I nodded assent after a brief pause.copyright protection22PENANAf34vS60LFi

            “Good. Yes, so a job.” Mr. Pan said.copyright protection22PENANAvcjQuFkjVv

            “What kind of hours will we have to work?” Paul asked. “Cause I’ll need time to practice my archery.”copyright protection22PENANAWHDRmFmFQp

            “Hours?” Mr. Pan faltered. “Umm…forever.”copyright protection22PENANAD6tIClOD7u

            “Forever?” I asked uncertain I had heard right.copyright protection22PENANAVCGfsbVMvR

            “Yes, forever.” Mr. Pan smiled. “How would you like to be a god?”copyright protection22PENANAirzVjWBFBs

            “Will there be goddesses involved?” Paul asked. “Because that would work out nicely for me.”copyright protection22PENANA5fzyXbTMO0

            “What do you mean ‘be a god.’ Like what kind of god?” I asked.copyright protection22PENANAhKCY059VSF

            “A Greek god.” Mr. Pan muttered.copyright protection22PENANANb7m7qiJ5U

            Paul gasped. “Pan! Greek!” He lifted up Pan’s pant leg. Before I could even comprehend why he was touching Pan’s pants, my brain saw the hair on his leg. Not normal leg hair, but thick, curly, wiry dark brown hairs like what you see on a sheep or a goat.copyright protection22PENANAba9LJ7WCUK

            “Whoa, that’s pretty excessive.” I muttered.copyright protection22PENANACbvf9vljrd

            “You idiot, he’s Pan!” Paul whispered in a hushed tone.copyright protection22PENANAYep5AwvSfB

            I laughed. “I know that’s his name. He told us.”copyright protection22PENANANrMWcv388Y

            “No, THE Pan. Pan, the Greek god of the wild?” Paul said emphasizing the THE.copyright protection22PENANATL9p0iUmBl

            Then my brain made the connection. We had just completed the ancient Greek unit in history class. “Pan.” I muttered. “You’re a Satyr, a man-goat. I thought you had horns?”copyright protection22PENANAzzAYFava3K

            Pan frowned. “I’m not a man-goat! And my horns are invisible right now. Can’t really be seen in public with them.”copyright protection22PENANAMQczNo4Rxc

            Paul dropped to her knees and starting kneeling. “Holy cow! I’m talking to a god!”copyright protection22PENANAPrXYQYgLkS

            “Get up!” Pan whispered. “Your mother is watching! Yes, I’m Pan. Thanks for recognizing me. Now stop groveling at my feet.” He said pulling Paul up. “I hated that even in the good old days.”copyright protection22PENANA7UsHT7RoiV

            “If you have hooves, how do you fit into those shoes?” I asked eyeing them.copyright protection22PENANA94MlDzJIrh

            “My horns are invisible, the shoes are an illusion. Now can we get to business?”copyright protection22PENANAVgITfzRwkc

            “You’re my favorite Greek god.” Paul said. Suck up, he did that better than me too, but only because I never kissed up to anybody.copyright protection22PENANAor6Q80X0og

            “Save it.” Pan muttered. “As I was saying. You guys want to be gods?”copyright protection22PENANAVylITZhDHI

            “I thought we already committed?” I pointed out.copyright protection22PENANAUDZDwecnKw

            “You did, I just like asking that.” Pan said.copyright protection22PENANAA8XHZ6HX66

            “So what do we get to be gods off?” Paul asked.copyright protection22PENANAd2EyKyx2bf

            “Wrong question.” Pan said. “The question you should ask is which gods do you get to be? And the answer to that is…I don’t know.”copyright protection22PENANAL6SLJoZWMK

            “What do you mean ‘which gods’ are we replacing someone?” I asked.copyright protection22PENANAsmTq4SxLQD

            “Yes. There’s a slight vacancy on New Olympus.” Pan said.copyright protection22PENANAR3GwCr4atg

            “New Olympus? I thought the gods lived on Mount Olympus.” Paul said.copyright protection22PENANAqfni07H03u

            “They did. But you will reign from New Olympus.” Pan said. “You know new gods, New Olympus.”copyright protection22PENANAKwRDXVwuGm

            “What god am I?” I asked.copyright protection22PENANA8yqO52fadJ

            “I can tell you when we get to New Olympus.” Pan said.copyright protection22PENANArDZOW0WD00

            “Let’s go.” Paul said excitedly.copyright protection22PENANA7KxZouUUZB

            I turned around and looked back at my mother. “What about our Mom?” I asked.copyright protection22PENANAg79GWeJcpW

            “She can’t come.” Pan said.copyright protection22PENANAVQAVEwVBaV

            “So if we take this job we’ll never see our mother again?” Paul asked, not as excitedly as before.copyright protection22PENANABiG8h5DbZC

            “You already accepted.” Pan reminded us. “But no, you can still visit her. Being a god gives you certain freedoms. Like doing whatever you want whenever you want it.”copyright protection22PENANAMgJWXFbHRA

            “Then let’s go!” Paul said excited once more.copyright protection22PENANAENqeI5LEHV

            “We should tell her.” I said taking a step back.copyright protection22PENANAzidgrul4Gl

            “Tell her you are leaving, but do not tell her the truth.” Pan warned me. “Like I said before, it’s pretty hush-hush.”copyright protection22PENANAGtCqpz5BgX

            “What should I say?” I asked.copyright protection22PENANAbULC9uIU8p

            “Your mother, your decision.” Pan shrugged.copyright protection22PENANAPII3Y9xkdd

            “Come on,” Paul dragged me towards the house, “we just got a scholarship for archery.” He said winking. He was smarter than me!copyright protection22PENANAGUGik6SqH9

            “Hey, you two.” Mom said. “What did he want?”copyright protection22PENANAnT38wdCe7L

            “Mom,” Paul said matter-of-factly. He began all negotiations in this manner, “he offered us a scholarship. It’s a really good school, and he guaranteed us spots on the archery team. They lost a couple seniors last year and they need some new blood. Can we go?”copyright protection22PENANAEXtm0svyMJ

            “What? Umm…I don’t see why not.” Mom said. “Where is this school?”copyright protection22PENANALtDsLXzDnh

            “Well, that’s the thing.” Paul muttered. “It’s kind of far away so we wouldn’t get to see you that much. But we can still visit!”copyright protection22PENANANLbQTH4wWc

            “It’s in Chicago Mom.” I said. Paul glared at me as soon as I said that.copyright protection22PENANAhA9KX9dsH0

            “Goodness that is far.” Mom said. Mom started itching her nose, which let us know she was thinking about it. “Well you’re old enough to know what you want. If you promise to visit, it’s fine by me.”copyright protection22PENANAbttOWeMwS9

            “Thank you Mom!” Paul exclaimed hugging Mom crazily. “We’ll visit as much as we can.”copyright protection22PENANANGUZwOGBlD

            “When will you have to leave?” she asked hugging me once Paul had released her.copyright protection22PENANANCeWnb6BEO

            “Now.” Paul said. “Bye Mom.” And with that Paul dragged me back outside with him.copyright protection22PENANABPi4EfjqLc

            “Oh.” Our mom said, sounding a little surprised.copyright protection22PENANAAzSvypjf0E

            “You idiot!” Paul exclaimed. “You can’t tell her we’re going to Chicago! What happens if she wants to move there to be closer to us?”copyright protection22PENANATNh7KFiQgW

            “Oh…” I muttered. “Well, I thought you forgot to tell her where we were going, so I tried to help.”copyright protection22PENANAFRMXVrcfSY

            “I didn’t give her a location on purpose!” Paul said exasperated.copyright protection22PENANArsxjY6IhmJ

            “How’d it go?” Pan asked once we reached him.copyright protection22PENANAWfwenhUG7b

            “Good, thank you for offering us an archery scholarship. It was very kind of you.” Paul said bowing.copyright protection22PENANACM2pKYQXeJ

            Pan raised his eyebrows. “Very clever of you. Now come along, there’s one more god we need to recruit before heading home.”copyright protection22PENANAVFbtZ9AHrW

            “Cool.” Paul muttered starting after him. I turned back towards our house and saw my mother standing in the window watching me. I smiled and waved at her before following my brother and the wild god.copyright protection22PENANAqocXDzexfm

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