Warning! Extreme, Explicit and Graphic descriptions of violence and semi-torture below! Read on at your own peril!
P.S. This is where the story earns its M rating.
Blood dripped down Riptide's length as I circled him.
"The high and mighty Lord Zeus, so strong that his anger comes down from the heavens themselves. Smiting any mortal unfortunate enough to invoke his wrath. Or even simply be unlucky enough to be in his way while he's letting off steam."
My mouth formed into a bloodthirsty smirk. Zeus was beaten and we both knew it. Cut, covered in ichor and his godly form losing it's sheen, it was a testament to his power that he could even still be standing right now after what I had put him through. Only my high-tech helmet, fused with the best that magic and technology could carry, allowed me to look at him in his true form. To be perfectly honest, it had started out as a pet project of mine that had slowly evolved and taken shape into it's final form. Not unlike that of Boba Fett's, it covered my head completely and allowed me to look straight at any deity short of Chaos itself in their true form without so much as a headache. A true form that would be falling apart any moment now.
"Imagine if any of your siblings, or any of your many children could see you now? Beaten by a mere mortal because you were too confident. Hubris milord." I finished with a dramatic bow, knowing what would happen next.
A "blink and you'll miss it" moment. Zeus took advantage of my dramatics and burst towards me at inhuman speeds with fists charged with raw power. Power that would be enough to tear apart any armour that even a god could create. Not healthy or safe by any means and if kept up too long would inevitably tear him apart; but all he needed to do was land one shot and he'd be able to take me down with him.
Of course I knew he would do this. Zeus was nothing if not predictable. Blurring with speed that was just at the brink of what a mortal could see he swung at where my head was, hoping to destroy the piece of gear that had allowed me to fight for so long.
Key word being was.
I had turned my bow into a sideways roll at the peak, twisting and slicing with my sword, hamstringing the enraged and weakening god.
Zeus collapsed like a puppet without strings as he hit the ground, skipping across the dirt plains of Africa that he had chosen as his field of choice. Activating my boots, I launched myself after him, using another fun piece of tech I had developed. Superman was always a favourite of mine, despite being more akin to Aquaman myself. Thus when the opportunity arose to create armour that would allow me to keep up with a furious god, how could I resist? A little bit of magic to absorb a fraction of kinetic energy from every footfall, creating the field of technomancy (magic and technology linked together) to create a metaphysical battery that I could use, a bit of the mind arts to psychically link it to my mind for activation and a little bit of technomancy to do the same to my head's up display to keep watch on it's status, not to mention more than a bit of praying to Chaos for it to work like I hoped it would, and voila! Armour that would make Hephaestus himself drool in awe and envy.
Ending with the result that I shot across the dark continent faster than a speeding bullet, barrelling after the asshole that had murdered my girlfriend. Catching up with him I gave him a swift kick on arrival, both to slow myself down and to hurt him even more. Zeus' head snapped back so fast that even being godly as he was his neck snapped like a twig. Not quite paralyzing him, but making it so that he had to dedicate energy that could've been used to fight into healing his fight-stopping injury.
I let him. This fight was a long time coming and I wanted it to last.
"You know, all of this could've been avoided if you had just acknowledged guilt in her death." I gloated, watching as his neck glowed with divine power, healing itself.
"All you had to do was to pay the weregild that we were due. Of course, you would've had to come clean with your involvement in her death and sacrificed your seat as king of Olympus for bringing dishonour on the name of the Council, but you would've survived." Musing, I pressed the point of Riptide into his stomach.
"Now however because you not only accepted trial by combat but a challenge for your domains, I get to make your death slow and incredibly, painful."
Pushing Riptide down less than half an inch the celestial bronze blade entered him, causing him to scream out in pain.
"When's the last time you gutted a fish? Must have been a while, right? You know, considering dear old dad is king of the oceans it must have been ages ago? Let me re-teach you how it's done. First-" I said, pushing deeper into his stomach "you cut into the hole that's the fish's asshole. That's not convenient for gutting you so I'm going to have to make do with just making a hole of my own."
Zeus' screams grew louder at each new movement, his entire being focused on trying to heal himself and failing, making his thrashing not only merely annoying but impotent.
"After you get your knife in, what you do is you drag it up the fish's belly-" I continued, demonstrating the technique on his helpless body, "until you get to the neck of the fish at which point you stop." I finished, removing my sword from his torso, golden ichor dripping off of the blade with a sickening glow.
I watched as his body attempted to repair the damage that I had done, glowing as brightly as it had the energy to, light pouring from the wound that had split his belly and allowed a look into his internal organs. Just like you see in the medical teaching videos, with intestines, and a liver, and all other sorts of organs inside.
"What happens next is remarkably simple. You simply cut the head off, and rip out the rest of the fish guts and you're done." Speaking slowly and clearly I finished, looking deep into his eyes for understanding of the words I was saying.
Pain was all I could see for a few seconds before recognition kicked in and a look of horror fell upon his face.
"Don't worry though. For you, the 'king of the gods', I think that we can reverse the order." I said, kneeling down to reach deep into his torso to grab hold of a long stand of intestine. Pulling more and more of it out, I ignored the continuing screams of agony as I felt the cold-burning pit of rage flare up again. A little ball that when I first learned of her death had ignited like a wildfire, burning down all of my friendships with outbursts of pain, and rage, and finally isolation and depression. A fire that had started me down this path long ago when I decided that I simply couldn't live in a world without her in it, and resulted in an offer that had lead me to this exact moment.
I was suddenly jerked back to reality as I felt a hand grip my arm, covered in a bracer as it was. There was still a bit of strength left in the extremity as I looked back to the source of my pain, holding on to the last bit of life that he had left. A ghostly whisper left his lips as he spoke his last words, laced with pain and suffering.
"I only did it-" a body-wracking cough interrupted him, leaving bloody spittle on his lips "to weaken you. You were too powerful and would have tried to take my throne." he finished, hacking even more.
I leaned down towards his ear and spoke gently.
"I would've left you alone if you and the rest of the gods hadn't continued to involve me in your affairs. This is all a mess of your own making."
With that final piece of knowledge imparted, and a final piece of mental torture sure to agonize him in his last moments, I crushed his skull with my gauntlet. In doing so I finished the challenge I had issued only days before, a challenge that had lasted the last twenty four hours and had finished with the slow and painful death of the god who I believed was responsible for the suffering and pain that I through. A challenge that ended with my body glowing as I took dominion over Zeus' domains and turned his body into a pale decrepit skeleton, aging millennia in a matter of seconds.
Don't get me wrong I didn't kill an innocent person, but Zeus wasn't responsible for my suffering. As I felt a mild sense of completion come over me, the ball of pain that I had carried around for centuries still felt tight in my gut and I couldn't help but feel as though exacting my revenge in painful reality was nowhere near enough to ease my spirit.
A/N: Thank you all for your kind words of encouragement! I couldn't decide on how I wanted to do this chapter and after scrapping several pages worth at least five or six times, changing direction each time I finally ended up with this. As it is I'm going to leave it up to you kind readers to let me know if you want this to continue, and if so which direction you'd like it to go. I can foresee this going any number of ways with the next chapter, both staying in this universe and watching Percy adapt to his new godly powers and responsibilities, as well as bouncing into a new and exciting AU that may or may not contain any number of central players that are in canon.
As always, thank you for reading!