Chapter 1- Black and White
"Life is never black or white, only shades of grey"
The burning sun slowly began to settle over the watery horizon, bathing the Greek metropolis in an orange blanket with soothed Alexander's soul in its warming glow. His sword bounced against his thigh as he walked through the bustling streets of the Greek Capital city of Marat. As a soldier of the Greek Grand Army his occupation involved watching the shores from the turrets that encased the city for any approaching ships. Though honestly the job did seem rather redundant at times since the closest island was far out of range of even the most determined Armada. And even if there was an army foolish enough to attack the Greek citadel the hundred foot walls atop the high cliffs were lined heavy with artillery catapults ready to sink any ships long before they made landfall. But the pay was good, and it certainly had one serious perk of the job.
"Hi darling" Acacia called out, waving enthusiastically from the doorstep of their home, her dark brown hair seeming to glow in the tranquil evening light. Plenty of time to spend with Acacia. He ran down the road towards their shared Villa, ignoring the mild pain as the side of his sword slapped against his exposed leg. He dropped his pack and threw himself into her waiting arms. He held her tightly, eventually breaking the bond to stare into her deep blue eyes. Acacia was a wonderful wife, as sharp and beautiful as her name denoted.
"You ok?" Alexander asked. Acacia smiled.
"I have something to tell you" She gently rubbed her stomach, the universal gesture of the news most husbands had been waiting to hear since the beginning of their marriage.
Alex's face beamed, holding Acacia tighter in his muscled grasp. "I love you" He rubbed his hand against his wife's stomach, feeling a light kick against his rough hand. "Hey I felt a kick" In each others arms they stared into the heavens. "Thank you Greek god" He called out into the sky. "Thank you for blessing us with a child"
The moon hung high in the darkened sky over the Aztec homeworld. The Aztec general stood atop the temple before his legions; each soldier highly trained and motivated to ensure the Aztec's victory in the coming battle. "You know your objectives. Now go" He called out over the thousands of foot soldiers, archers, catapults and cavalry before him. At the back of the formation stood the Aztec creature, a mighty Gorilla, which when utilized would decimate the enemy city in a fiery apocalypse.
The glowing portal spread across the barren ground in a bright blue glow, fluttering every delicate blade of grass as it grew and spread. The arrogant Greeks believed that no one could assail their stronghold from the sea, but the Aztecs were going to prove them wrong. The sound of metal on metal crashed through the valley as he watched his legions charge through the portal, the first attack had begun.
Alex had been sleeping when the attack had begun. He was nuzzled up against his wife, enjoying her radiated warmth after being stuck on a perimeter wall, enduring the strong sea wind and the blazing cold. A thunderous crash resonated outside, throwing Alex from his bed as he crashed onto the floor. Acacia was roused from her slumber, still dazed as the influence of sleep still clutched at her mind.
Alex however was up and alert, his military training taking control of him. He pulled a shirt over his head, scooping his sword off of the floor, brandishing the weapon as if to test its weight before sheathing it. "Stay here" He said forcefully, charging out of the house, leaving Acacia completely dazed.
When he stepped out into the street, what Alexander saw was chaos. Flaming rocks glided gracefully through the air, arcing to drop heavily into the city centre. All around him he could hear screams of the panicked civilians, the sound of clashing swords as his comrades fought away whoever had decided to attack the city. "Alex!" A voice called out from behind him. He turned to face them; Acacia had followed him out into the burning streets, a robe draped across her feminine form.
Alex glanced into the sky. "Get down" He screamed, leaping into the air, tackling Acacia to the ground, dragging the both of them down with his weight. Another boulder glided overhead, crashing into the ground, setting another patch of the city ablaze.
He rose to his feet, pulling her up with him. "Head for the town centre, you'll be safe there" He ran down the street.
"Be careful" Acacia called out, watching as her husband ran off to once again serve his country, for what may be his last.
Alex ran towards one of the engagements between the Greek soldiers and the invaders. He drew his sword, charging into the fray, slashing for the closest enemy, slicing a red line through their chest.
Through the blood red veil over his eyes as he slashed through the mounds of flesh before him he was able to discern the origin of the attacker's uniform. The feathered helmet, the plated chainmail. The invaders were Aztecs.
He fought back a group of Aztec swordsmen; a blade across the throat ended their threat. The Aztec's gathered around him, their blades scraping closer and closer against his robes. He stepped back, crashing into another soldier behind him. He looked over his shoulder, the chiselled features of another Greek Soldier stared him back in the face, Doron.
"Nice too see you Doron" Alex spoke.
Doron smiled. "It's always nice too have company. I just wish they'd called first" He joked.
Alex stabbed at another Aztec soldier. "I don't think the Aztec's are the type for common curtsey"
An Aztec guard clashed his sword against Doron's, his face inches away the Aztecs. "And they've got really bad breath" His pushed his foot into the Aztecs torso, pushing his attacker to the ground before finishing them.
Alex and Doron glanced around the ruined clearing, the floor littered with the bodies of Aztec and Greek soldiers. Doron, Alex and half a dozen other Greek soldiers were the only ones left standing. "It looks like we've wo-" Doron's victorious bravado was cut short. Alex turned to face him. He lay on the floor, drowning in a pool of his own blood seeping from an arrow wound piercing through his torso. Archers.
He looked up towards the top of the wall; the battlements were lined with Aztec archers, each firing steel rain down on the defenceless Greek troops below them. "Get out of range!" Alex yelled, hoping that it might save some of the soldiers from suffering the same fate as Doron.
Alex charged around a building, throwing himself against the wall, the hard brickwork shielding him as the arrows punched into the soft ground beside him. When the arrows stopped, he took the risk and dared to poke his head out, exposing himself. All the Greek soldiers were dead, every last one.
There was nothing left for him here. So he ran. He ran through the blood stained streets. Bodies, Aztec and Greek, stained the streets. Everywhere he looked he saw death and destruction; he saw everything he knew destroyed. He looked towards the town centre, the Greeks final stand against the invading Aztecs, the final stronghold they had left to conquer. But suddenly the town centre was lit ablaze in a fiery explosion, the flames dancing in the blood red sky. "Acacia!" He ran towards the town centre, there was still a chance to save her.
Suddenly a blinding white light began to encapsulate him all around as he ran through the streets. He kept running, each step bringing him closer to his goal. The light began to blind him, he forced himself to close his watery eyes, never breaking stride.
When he opened his eyes, the world was blank. The city was gone; he was floating in an open void. Was he dead?
He began to hear a voice, a voice he knew "We need a god" Acacia. "Please help us! Our city is in ruin, are armies are crushed! Please…Please!" The voice began to trail off, weaker with every word.
"Acacia!" He called into the void.