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Mythology
Adventure
Gods In Training: Generations
Writer TJ Nyx
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  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
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#21
Chapter 21 Artemisia
TJ Nyx
Jun 11, 2018
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18
11 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!be7TbeC1LvVOiL9zk6nCposted on PENANA

            “FIRE!” my brother and I gave the command in unison. A volley of arrows was unleashed into the air. We watched them arc down into the valley and dive into the approaching hounds.copyright protection18PENANAmDeSBUbbq8

            “No kills, we hurt them though.” Paul muttered.copyright protection18PENANACBmKuyY7zJ

The wounds on my back burned gently, as if they knew more would soon be joining them. “Do you think they can climb?”copyright protection18PENANACuxUgGuBNS

"Form phalanx, kill anything that gets up here." Paul ordered the guard. "Archers behind, prepare to give them hell! If they can…it will be a short visit.”copyright protection18PENANAdavr27mdjM

            We rained arrows down on the furry blurs moving below. I seemed to be more than just hellhounds, but I couldn’t be sure at this distance. It made no matter to me, I could hit any of them, and that’s all that mattered right now.copyright protection18PENANAmVoJGThE0Q

            “Where’s the party?” Gaia had appeared next to me. “HYAH!” without waiting for an answer, Gaia slammed her fists into the ground. Large rocks jutted up out of the ground seemingly randomly below us in the valley, her attack didn’t do much. The beasts just ran around the new stones.copyright protection18PENANAnDlVyBC2cp

            “You missed.” I informed her, firing yet another arrow. For the record mine didn’t miss.copyright protection18PENANAUqAqSCyeQR

            “I hit what I was aiming for.” Gaia muttered. “We don’t have enough people to guard the whole city perimeter. I just craved a nice little channel to keep most of the enemies coming at us from this direction. We have to keep them in front of us.” I realized that now that it was pointed out to me. I grunted, firing another arrow.copyright protection18PENANA1cNpVtid8j

            The archers as well as Paul and I simply began coating the path Gaia had made with arrows. The dogs couldn’t get away. Several tried once more to break through the arrow storm, but it held strong. We were winning.copyright protection18PENANA3wWprv13xe

            “Gaia!” I looked over my shoulder to see Hector running closer. “Come on, Kara needs you now.”copyright protection18PENANAtsE3TwGsLw

            “I’m a little busy!” Gaia shouted as she clapped her hands together, causing a hellhound to sink into a sudden mud pit. Hector run right up to her. “It’s Albany.” He saidcopyright protection18PENANAkMJ7cFBvSJ

            I afforded a quick glance over to him. “What happened to Albany?” Hector pursed his lips, and didn’t respond.copyright protection18PENANAOVfLlHgmLO

            “Queen Hera’s orders.” Hector repeated.copyright protection18PENANAAehfibLYDx

“Fine.” I nodded. “Gaia go ahead.” I muttered. “We got this. No need to help out, or check on us. Just fighting demon dogs from hell.”copyright protection18PENANAvXke5wTH1L

            “Not fighting little sister.” Paul appeared before me grinning. “Kicking ass.” The few dogs that still could, limped back into the forest. We had won. A cheer went out among the men. Gaia allowed her rock formations to crumble back into the earth.copyright protection18PENANAqQHGC3oTp9

            “How did you ever lose?” Gaia called over to me. “Those little puppies were wusses.”copyright protection18PENANAIZnZfFb0EO

            “I had less help.” I said defensively. Before Gaia or Paul could respond a horn sounded eerily in the forest.copyright protection18PENANAy9MSoSoizq

            “Keep ranks!” Paul instantly was back in battle mode. “Maintain the formation, we aren’t done here yet.”copyright protection18PENANA40gMHTP5Me

            “Good.” Gaia muttered. “I haven’t had a reason to go earthquake in a long time. Hector, tell Queenie it’s a pass from me.” Gaia cracked her knuckles. Hector shook his head and turned around running back towards the throne room. Howls and growls began rumbling through the forest. There were definitely more now. The first wave had just been testing us. Now the real battle would begin.copyright protection18PENANAeueCutiFuW

            “Gaia!” Paul looked over. He seemed slightly worried about the numerous noises coming from the forest. Some of them sounded more sinister than hellhounds. “Get your rocks up! We need our flanks protected.”copyright protection18PENANAu26hVv9jNI

            “On it boss.” Gaia made a show of stretching, showing off for us. Gaia was in the motion of bringing her fists down hard into the ground, just as before…but what sounded like a sonic boom echoed throughout the valley. An arrow, moving like a rocket, burst from the forest. It covered the distance from the valley floor to the mountaintop in a second. It passed right through Gaia’s abdomen, barely losing any of its momentum. The arrow continued on towards the heavens, leaving Gaia to slump over onto the ground…not moving.copyright protection18PENANAKRJ1EqUtvG

            “NO!” I screamed. Before I could move the hounds were back on us. This time they came from the sides, circling around the mountain. There were more of them this time...much, much more.copyright protection18PENANAIKbXmFrElW

            We were in a bad spot, and Paul and I knew it. We were too few to defend the whole mountain. They could circle around us and obliterate us from all sides. But if we tried to redeploy now to create a perimeter, we would be abandoning the high ground as well as most of the city. We had no alternative, the men bunkered down and Paul and I fired arrow after arrow, trying to keep the wolves at bay. I glanced Gaia out of the corner of my eye. She was writhing in pain. Which was good, it meant she was alive.copyright protection18PENANAAQZH7Uchd0

            “ROOOOOOOARRR” the ground seemed to shake. Out of the forest a great bear charged forth, closely followed by a wild boar with massive tusks. Hundreds of creatures joined them in flowing out of the forest. Even from here I knew they had to be the ones the Huntress had shown us last night. She must be close. That arrow that pierced Gaia must have come from her.copyright protection18PENANA0XSJZw9TZE

            “ARTIE!” I looked over to see Paul. He was struggling to lift Gaia. “We have to go now.” Another sonic boom nearly ruptured my eardrums. Paul’s head was nearly taken off as the arrow skimmed his neck. I looked over and saw the Huntress standing on the edge of the woods, her bow out and pointing right at us. I quickly fired an arrow off in her direction. I also said some choice words describing her, but I’m not going to say what they were.copyright protection18PENANAAIoLFLr7pM

            I hurried to my brother’s side and helped him lift Gaia. We started carrying her between us deeper into the city. “Fall back!” Paul said. “Regroup around the throne room.copyright protection18PENANA30D2ILWU2a

            Once we were away from the sides, we no longer had to worry about sonic boom arrows ripping through us. But we still heard them. The Huntress was seemingly gently plucking her bowstring and leveling buildings.copyright protection18PENANAU28ML7iV0i

            “What do we do?” the sergeant demanded as my brother and I gently lowered Gaia to the ground outside the throne room.copyright protection18PENANAAA1ZmGKNN9

            “Someone made sure she doesn’t die.” I said.copyright protection18PENANAARadTSYPN0

            “Earth is immortal.” Gaia glowered at me. The blood leaking out of her gave me doubts about her statement.copyright protection18PENANA0H38uPfNKg

            “Draw up a line here.” Paul said.copyright protection18PENANA5kQ6kcN4ZB

            “Bring in all the civilians and people you can find. Put them in the throne room.” I added.copyright protection18PENANAeAsoNmhMc4

            “If we survive we can push back out and retake the city.” Paul nodded grimly at me.copyright protection18PENANANcMQkgFA3q

            “Not if.” I said. “Don’t jinx us.”copyright protection18PENANAQ9LGg5T49T

            “When we survive.” He grinned.copyright protection18PENANAGot8Mhv43H

            “Twins, hop in!” I looked up and saw Pan, in all his goat glory flying above me. Well he wasn’t flying, the chariot he was riding was flying. Selene, goddess of the moon was driving her moon chariot pulled by her giant owl. Selene lowered the chariot to where it was nearly touching the ground. Pan was reaching his hand out for mine. “Let’s get you a closer shot at Blowhard down there.”copyright protection18PENANA8QTUGeamOe

            Paul rushed past me and onto the chariot. “I am faster than you.” He mocked.copyright protection18PENANANEoylEEfIN

            I grabbed the offered hands and was pulled in. The chariot instantly dipped, the wheels were now on the ground.copyright protection18PENANA8pbCyYT32W

            “It’s too heavy.” Selene called back to us. “We can’t get lift.”copyright protection18PENANALbME5tTgQI

            “This is a magical chariot? Why is there a weight limit?” I demanded.copyright protection18PENANAvDmTcIxQXg

            “There usually isn’t.” Selene grumbled out as she desperately tried to yank back on the reins. “My magic is weak all of a sudden.”copyright protection18PENANAE6FQIeOBhR

            “Are we going to crash?” I asked.copyright protection18PENANAx22kH8OApE

            “Artemis is a goddess of the moon too. You might be drawing my powers from me.” Selene glanced back at me.copyright protection18PENANAiUiFNuollm

            “I swear I’m not.” I shouted.copyright protection18PENANACZsiPawELO

            “Artie wouldn’t do that.” Paul rushed to my defense.copyright protection18PENANAvjQyEyHs87

            “It is not a choice.” Selene strained against her reins. “Two goddess’s sphere’s of influence as similar as ours overlap and clash without intent. It is an innate response. I am weaker with her here.”copyright protection18PENANA7r1p7PUwbg

            “Sorry sis, I tried.” Paul shrugged.copyright protection18PENANASOfk65uDJg

            “Paul it’s fine.” I said. I looked around. Dairy the pegasi was nearby, probably still waiting after Herman had abandoned ship. “I can find another ride.” I said.copyright protection18PENANArfziOdQvGZ

            “Be careful Artie.” He muttered.copyright protection18PENANACNrEdzu85F

            “I’ll kill her.” I promised. “Gods know you couldn’t hit an elephant from under it.”copyright protection18PENANAoYtDiAINes

            Paul rolled his eyes. “Fly.” He ordered.copyright protection18PENANA3GHDZvQQ1x

            “Dairy, don’t follow that chariot.” I was disobeyed once more by the horse.copyright protection18PENANAPEkhjyRNGX

            “Hold on!” Selene called. The chariot veered downwards as they rocketed towards the valley, Dairy and I dove to follow. We were nearly perpendicular to the ground.copyright protection18PENANAs4VWIexr1L

            “AHHHHHH!” I let out as fierce a war cry as I could muster, it was mostly fear…this was practically skydiving. I fired several arrows on the way down. We skimmed low just above the ground. Hellhounds and monsters lept up at us, but we were too high for most, and too fast for the rest. Another arrow rocketed past us. The Huntress had taken aim.copyright protection18PENANAT4sBHr7yh8

            We were circling around, lining up another shot when Pan shouted to me. “I know her! Artie I know her.” I glanced at him. I hadn’t been sure that was what he had said. Wind was buffeting my ears. How could Pan know her?copyright protection18PENANA57Nqp6YgTE

            I shook my head. I could ask him when she was dead. I fired another arrow. It was futile she was just too fast. Like before in the clearing she dodged with inhuman agility. “This isn’t working.” I shouted.copyright protection18PENANAdmJ8ismQTo

            Paul launched several more arrows. Determined to get revenge. Revenge for my injuries, revenge for this attack on our home, revenge for everything. I turned and glanced towards the city. I could see things, evil things, climb the cliffs and ledges leading to our home. Soon the city would be filled with them, and all of them would be converging on those we had left at the throne room.copyright protection18PENANACNt4obwvJN

            “Selene!” I called out. “Selene retreat.” I ordered. “Take us back. Dairy, don’t return to the mountain.”copyright protection18PENANADPVrgkxeAq

            BOOM! An arrow very nearly missed me. I spurred Dairy onwards faster. This time I didn’t have to play opposite day, he wanted to get away from the Huntress as much as I did. I chanced a look back. Selene’s chariot was still circling the Huntress, Paul was leaning over the edge and firing arrow after arrow down on his sworn enemy.copyright protection18PENANATONCX65kWY

            “Get out of the there!” I shouted. But I realized he wouldn’t. Paul and the others were covering my escape. They were distracting the Huntress, and forcing her to take aim at them instead of me.copyright protection18PENANAIyLbD9m9F6

            Clouds were rolling in. A storm was gathering around the mountain of the gods. I was carried up into them. Dairy broke through the cloud layer and I lost sight of my brother.copyright protection18PENANAXiWSKcchqN

            “PAUL!” I screamed over the winds. “PAN!” Selene had better follow my orders and ignore Paul. That dufus would probably be content to fire arrows all day, and when he ran out he start to use the spokes on Selene’s chariot’s wheels. Dairy neared Hercules’ landing. Still there was no sign of the chariot. BOOM.copyright protection18PENANAIkBvWyB2Sy

            Clouds dispersed as an arrow was flung towards the heavens. It seemed I was being targeted once more. That must mean Paul was finally retreating. I urged Dairy to take evasive maneuvers. There wasn’t a great need for convincing him.copyright protection18PENANA0A6MMJV9TA

            Move sonic booms were peppering the clouds around me. The city was getting closer.copyright protection18PENANAfQTbIDnVVO

            “ARTIE!” I turned and saw the chariot break through the clouds. Pan was waving frantically at me.copyright protection18PENANAID8j95SL7K

            Then an arrow was threaded through Dairy’s hindquarters. The Pegasus screamed. The wings stopped beating and his head drooped.copyright protection18PENANAj7lpT89Ph2

            “Gods!” the horse was dead. I was crash landing with no control. “Shit, shit shit. GODS!”copyright protection18PENANAqxSkIBY6wU

            I veered down and to the left. Momentum was still carrying me forwards, closer to safety, but the trajectory was dropping precipitously. The lifeless corpse I was riding would get me close, but not all the way. We were veering dangerously close to the rocky outcroppings just below the mountaintop. Unceremoniously I made the decision to jump.copyright protection18PENANAUey3yH8qsg

            As we neared the walls, I ditched the dead Dairy. I hit a ledge…hard, but managed not to fall to my death. The wind was knocked from my body and pain screamed through me. I turned over gingerly to watch my once indignant steed shatter against the rocks before dropping into the ground. My eyes quickly diverted, looking for those who were still alive.copyright protection18PENANAbMoxbhGl7X

            “I saw that Selene was now heading for me, rather than the mountaintop. Paul was next to her urging her on. He was no longer shooting arrows. He must have run out.copyright protection18PENANAnyugTdRRkn

            “Paul!” I called out as they approached. Another arrow rocketed upwards, Selene easily banked to avoid it, tilting her chariot sideways…exposing herself over the side of it. BOOM.copyright protection18PENANALfCjia1rBu

            The arrow burst through Selene’s head. She fell off the chariot and began plummeting down. In horror, the owl screamed and frantically changed course. It was descending rapidly, trying to catch its dead master. The sudden turn had jarred the passengers. They were hurled from the chariot.copyright protection18PENANAHMg5ksn0Nv

            I watched Pan and my twin brother free fall from Mount Olympus. Paul was looking at me, he hand outstretched as he broke through the clouds. He had no doubt been screaming at the top of his lungs. But the words reached me as a whisper.copyright protection18PENANAYb3srWGjO0

            “Artemis.”copyright protection18PENANAHAfjTyuVZ5

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