Demons and Dragons
Fang stopped and turned to study the demons behind her. They were young for demons, little more than children really, but all of them had potential. But potential alone wasn't enough, which was why the High Mother had asked her to supervise their training. Most demons of Fang's rank would have resented such a task, but she was only too happy to agree. Training would take her mind away from other, more sentimental matters. She shivered. Even now, weeks after they had parted, she could still feel Lightning's hands on her skin, to say nothing of the ghostly lips she felt against her own whenever she closed her eyes.
There was also a certain… sadistic pleasure to be had in putting these young demons through their paces. Today's training should prove particularly entertaining in that regard, since today they would be trying to bond with dragons. She chuckled and smiled toothily as the younger demons flinched away. Yes, she would have her hands full keeping all of them alive.
But as dangerous as trying to bond with a dragon was, it was more than worth the risk. The dragons that soared through the skies of Hell were truly formidable beasts. To ride into battle with one was a rare privilege, for there were few creatures in all of creation that could match their size, speed, and strength. Dragons also offered the rarest commodity in Hell – true loyalty. Once a dragon bonded with a demon, only death could revoke its loyalty.
"Today," Fang said, "Your task is simple. You will find a dragon and bond with it."
She grinned as the younger demons stiffened and exchanged wary looks. They all knew that it wasn't that simple, but they were smart enough to try and conceal their fear from her. Still, she could all but taste it, and she gave herself a few moments to savour the flavour of it. For a demon, there were few things finer to the senses than pain and fear, though aggression and anger had a taste all their own. She swallowed thickly, remembering the heady mix of lust and bloodlust that characterised her relationship with Lightning. The goddess was nothing short of splendid in the throes of fury or passion.
"Most of you will fail," Fang continued. "Some of you may even die." Some of the younger demons scowled, and Fang laughed. Good. Anger was much more fitting for demons than fear. "Since I am feeling merciful, I will not punish anyone who fails, provided that I am satisfied by their efforts." She bared her teeth and snarled. "But if any of you give anything less than your very best, I will kill you myself, and I promise you it will be slow and painful."
She paused to let the words sink in. It was at times like this that she was grateful for her reputation. These young demons knew who she was, and all of them knew better than to test her. She had killed far stronger demons for far less. The silence also gave her students time to examine the terrain before them.
They were perched on the outskirts of the City of Ruin. Hell had not always been Hell, and long ago, a city had stood there nestled on the shores of a shining lake, beautiful beyond words, and lovely beyond measure. But the people of that city had been fools. Rather than bow to the High Mother, they had chosen to side with Heaven.
They had paid dearly for their defiance. With a single word, the High Mother had devastated the city. No one had been spared. Men, women, even children – all were slain. And if that were not enough, the High Mother had turned the shining lake that lapped at the shores of the city into a vast, seething pool of molten lava. The dragons had moved in not long after, roosting in the towering, burnt out buildings, and basking in the heat of the blazing lake.
"Before you go, I will show you the kind of power that may one day be yours if you can bond with a dragon." Fang's lips curled. If there was anything that demons craved, it was power. She raised her voice. "Bahamut!"
Her words hung on the wind, and then, in the distance, the surface of the lake of molten lava exploded upward. A shape tore free, vast and terrible. Great torrents of liquid fire sloughed off pitch-black metal as titan wings unfurled and cracked the sky. Violet eyes opened, and a full thousand feet of dragon heaved into the air. A monstrous wave of killing intent swept over the landscape, and the younger demons struggled to stay standing. Fang, however, felt only pride. Bahamut was one of the mightiest dragons in Hell, and he was hers.
As Bahamut thundered through the air toward them, lava poured off his body, and the sky trembled as he bellowed a challenge. Few dragons had truly black scales and even fewer had violet eyes. Since his birth, Bahamut's unusual colouring had made him a target. He had been forced to grow larger, stronger, and more ferocious simply to survive. With one last, terrifying cry, he folded his wings and landed nearby. The ground shuddered beneath his tremendous weight, and his claws gouged deep trenches into the hard rock at his feet.
"This is Bahamut." Fang chuckled as the dragon eyed the younger demons and snarled. Her duties meant that she had precious little time with him, and he was not pleased at the prospect of sharing. Gently, she reached out with her soul to soothe him through their bond. They would have ample time together so long as he refrained from eating her students. "As you can see, he is very, very powerful. However, few dragons of this size are willing to bond, so I would suggest that you start with something smaller, preferably a dragon that has just left the nest." She smiled thinly. "Avoid dragons that are still in the nest. Their mothers rarely think very much of demons." She gestured at the City of Ruin. "Now, go. I do not care if you work together or alone, but I will be watching, and if you disappoint me, I will feed you to Bahamut."
The other demons vanished, streaking through the air toward the ruins. Fang floated up onto Bahamut's head and watched them go.
Fang gave the dragon's head a pat. "Remember the first time we met?"
Bahamut said nothing, but Fang could read his thoughts through their bond. He still remembered. There had been two others with Fang that day. One of them – the loud one with red hair – still visited regularly, but the other one – with pink hair and eyes like a storm – had not visited for centuries. He missed that one. She smelled like thunder, and her soul had felt as big as the sky.
Fang smiled faintly as Bahamut took to the air. It would be much easier to watch all of her students from above. "I miss her too. Believe me, I miss her too." And as the wind rushed past, she let her mind drift back to the day she had first met Bahamut.
X X X
"Why are we going to the City of Ruin, Fang?"
Fang grinned at Lightning. The other demon was scowling at her, which was something she seemed to do almost all of the time. Lightning even scowled at her when she was happy. "We're going to bond with a dragon. Honestly, Lightning, you're a demon, you should know these things."
Lightning's scowl deepened. "I don't spend all my time here, you know. I have to spend time Up There too."
Fang winced. "Oh, yeah."
It couldn't be easy spending time up in Heaven. From what Lightning had told her, they were all a bunch of stuck up jerks, who never let her have any fun at all. And they had all those rules too. It was ridiculous. Up there, Lightning got into trouble if she blasted the gods that made fun of her. Well, that was stupid. If those gods didn't want to be blasted, they should have known better than to make fun of Lighting's wings. If Fang had been in Lightning's place, she would have torn their throats out.
"Don't worry," Fang said firmly. "You won't have to go back for ages." She smirked and grabbed Lightning's arm to pull her along. The other demon had a tendency to mope whenever she thought too much about Heaven, and Fang hated it when Lightning moped. Lightning was much better when she was angry or grumpy. "Anyway, everyone knows that most dragons roost in the City of Ruin, so if we're going to bond with a dragon, we have to go there."
"But how do you bond with a dragon?" Lightning's face scrunched up, and Fang fought the urge to pinch her cheeks. It was cute, not that she'd ever say that. Demons, especially the daughter of the High Mother, didn't do cute.
This time, instead of Fang, it was Vanille who answered. The red head was younger and smaller than them, but she could keep up as long as they stayed on the ground. "A dragon bonds to a demon by establishing a connection between their souls. If a dragon likes you and judges you worthy, it will choose to bond with you."
"And if you're not worthy?" Lightning asked.
Vanille smiled sunnily. "Then it'll kill you, I guess. Or it might just mangle you a lot. But, yeah, it'll probably kill you."
Fang laughed and threw one arm about Lightning's shoulders. Lightning didn't normally like other demons touching her, but she let Fang get away with a lot. "Stop worrying. We'll be fine, and don't forget, you're the High Mother's daughter. What dragon could resist you?"
Lightning's glare was cold, even in the fires of Hell. "Oh no, this is your idea, Fang. If anyone is going near a dragon, it's you."
"Fine," Fang grumbled. "But what if it tries to eat me?" She got along quite well with most animals, but she'd never approached a dragon before.
Lightning gave her a haughty look. "Are you forgetting that you belong to me, Fang? I won't let a dragon eat what's mine."
Fang laughed. "So glad you care, Your Highness."
Lightning scowled. "It would take too much trouble to find another friend." She glared at Vanille. "And at least you didn't blow up my room."
"You have more than one room," Vanille whined. "And the High Mother did like the explosives I used. Demons even use them on missions now."
"I had stuff I liked in that room." Lightning frowned. "And that wasn't even the last time you did it. I'm just glad that my mother gave you your own lab, otherwise we'd all be dead by now."
Vanille opened her mouth to reply, but Fang cut her off. "Vanille, you're my sister and I love you, but she's right. Now, come on, we need to get moving."
They picked up the pace, and it wasn't much longer before they reached the edge of the City of Ruin. As they crested the last hill, they took a few moments to stop and stare. Even in Hell, the ruins were incredible.
The ruins were larger than the Black Forest, and the buildings that remained towered thousands of feet into the air. There were shorter buildings too, but even those were gigantic, large enough to fit full-grown dragons. Most striking of all, however, were the proportions of everything. The windows, stairs, streets, and doors – all of them seemed to be made for beings far larger than demons. And hanging over all of it was an air of absolute desolation.
It was like an enormous bomb had gone off at the centre of the city, annihilating everything in the centre, and ripping apart much of the rest. Even the ground had a different texture, as though it had been fused into a single patch of molten rock and left to cool. That anything still stood was a testament to the skill and craftsmanship that had gone into the city's construction – and the terrible power of its destroyer.
"They say that when the High Mother first came here, there were giants that served Heaven," Vanille murmured. Out of the three of them, she enjoyed their classes the most. "They refused to bow to the High Mother, and so she made an example of them. These ruins are all that remain."
"Your mother is awesome," Fang whispered to Lightning. The High Mother was the strongest of all demons, but it was rare for her to flaunt her power.
"The dragons moved in a while later," Vanille added. "And they've been roosting here ever since."
"Let's get moving then," Lightning said. The dark clouds that filled the sky made it hard to see above them, but even so, she could sense that they were not alone. "It's too open out here."
"We'll go through the ruins first," Fang said. "Then maybe the lake." She pointed to the enormous lake of molten lava that lapped at the edges of the city. "We should try a younger dragon too, since the older ones are even more unfriendly."
Together, the three of them crept into the ruins. Picking their way through the broken, battered city, Fang felt very strange. Since she had met Lightning, she had quickly found favour with the High Mother, and given proper training and instruction for the first time, her powers had grown at an incredible rate. She no longer felt small and helpless even though she looked like a mortal of about twelve. But here, in these ruins, surrounded by evidence of the High Mother's overwhelming power, she felt tiny. Would Lightning become this powerful? She shivered. For some reason, the thought didn't scare her so much as it excited her.
Shaking herself out of her thoughts, Fang turned her attention to her surroundings. She had keen senses, even for a demon, and right now, all of them were telling her to leave. This place was dangerous, but they hadn't come this far to go back with nothing. Beside her, Vanille was eagerly recording everything on a small device that she had cobbled together. It was supposedly quite an improvement on the equipment currently used on missions, and the High Mother would doubtless be quite interested in the results.
"It's beautiful," Lightning said quietly as they climbed over a pile of rubble and snuck into one of the buildings. Inside, a huge ramp wound its way up toward an open balcony five hundred feet above.
"You've got that right." Fang ran one hand along the walls. There was writing there that she couldn't read. "I think we're close. I smell fire."
Lightning made a face and sniffed at the air. "There's fire everywhere."
Fang grinned. "My nose is better than yours." She tugged at Vanille, who was busy trying to translate the writing. "Come on."
They pressed themselves against the wall, their small frames dwarfed by the sheer size of it. The balcony was of the same scale, easily four hundred feet across, and there, nestled among a pile of half-melted rocks and rubble, was a baby dragon. It was a good seven feet long, and it seemed to be asleep, one wing folded over its head, and a scorched, half-eaten animal on the ground nearby.
"It's so cute," Vanille whispered. "Maybe we can bring it back to the palace with us." She fumbled in her pockets. "There's this thing I've been working on and –"
"Quiet," Fang said. "It might look cute, but I bet it's mother doesn't." She paused. "You were listening during class, right?" Vanille nodded. "So, how exactly do we bond with it?"
Lightning grabbed Fang's arm and squeezed hard. She bared her teeth. "Did you lead us out here without knowing how to bond with a dragon?"
Vanille frowned. "They didn't really say anything in class except for what I've already said. I think we're supposed to be a bit older before we try and bond with a dragon."
Lightning's eyes narrowed, and she folded her arms over her chest. "We are not going back empty handed. Fang, go over there and try." She shoved Fang onto the balcony. "We'll be here."
"Fine," Fang mumbled. She supposed it was fair that she try first since it was her idea, and if things went wrong then Lightning and Vanille were there to help. True, demons rarely trusted each other fully, but she trusted them with her life, and knew they felt the same.
As quietly as she could, she snuck across the balcony toward the baby dragon, watchful for any sign of its mother. As she got closer, the baby dragon gave a little shiver and then woke. She felt something brush against her mind, and realised that it must be the dragon trying to understand whom she was and why she was there.
"Hey there," Fang whispered. "I'm Fang, what's your –"
The dragon shrieked.
Uh oh. Fang gulped. "Wait, calm down. I don't want to hurt you or anything. I just want to be your friend, so calm down and –"
The dragons shrieked again, only this time, there was an answering cry from above. Fang looked up, and her eyes widened as two hundred feet of dragon raced toward her.
"Run!" Fang screamed, sprinting toward Lightning and Vanille. "Run!"
The pair took one look at the dragon, and then the three of them were pelting down the ramp. There was a thud as the dragon landed on the balcony, and before they could even get halfway down, a blast of white-hot fire raced after them. Fang cursed and shoved Vanille behind her as Lightning turned and threw up a shimmering barrier of power. The wave of fire hit with a boom, and Lightning cursed as the barrier began to crack.
"Help me," Lightning cried. "Quick!"
Fang nodded, and added her power to Lightning's. For a split-second, their souls touched, and Fang reeled. Touching Lightning's soul was like being caught in the heart of a storm. There was so much power there, so much raw emotion, that Fang wondered how Lightning could possibly bear it. Then the moment passed, and her whole world was the paper-thin, glowing barrier that separated them from a horrible, fiery death.
Finally, the fire receded. The blast had melted half the ramp, and blown several large holes in the walls, but somehow, they were still alive. But the dragon wasn't done yet. With a roar, it shoved its way onto the ramp, and rumbled toward them.
"Fly!" Fang shouted. "Fly!"
Fang had just enough time to summon her wings before the dragon unleashed another torrent of fire. She grabbed Vanille and shot into the air, angling the two of them toward one of the holes in the wall. The red head could fly, but not nearly as fast as Fang or Lightning. As for Lightning, Fang wasn't worried. She'd never seen a demon so naturally gifted in the air.
Once she was clear of the building, Fang flapped her wings to gain some height and then let go of Vanille. The younger demon should be okay to fly now that they were out in the open. A few seconds later, Lightning emerged from another hole in the building, her wings easily carrying her level with Fang.
"What now?" Lightning asked.
"Now, we hope it doesn't come after us," Fang said. Below them, the building gave a deep groan, before the dragon launched itself into the air toward them.
Lightning made a disgusted sound. "So much for that idea." Her wings beat the air quickly in agitation. "We might be able to outrun it, Fang, but Vanille –"
"We're not leaving her," Fang snapped.
Lightning growled. "Of course not. "But if we're going to fight, we need a plan. That dragon is too big for us to fight fairly."
"I have some explosives," Vanille offered. "Not enough to kill it, but I should be able to hurt it."
Fang and Lightning shared a look. They had trained together for years now, and they knew each other's skills intimately. With Vanille's explosives, they might have a chance.
"Fang, Vanille, I need you to distract it," Lightning said.
Fang frowned. "I'm best with fire and wind, Lightning, neither of which are very good against dragons."
"You don't need to kill it." Lightning's eyes narrowed. "Only distract it for a while."
Fang smiled toothily. "You're going to be calling the lightning then?" Lightning nodded. "Sounds like a plan then."
"And me?" Vanille asked.
"You're with me." Fang grabbed Vanille. "Hit it with your explosives, and for Hell's sake, Vanille, try not to get eaten."
Fang and Vanille darted off in one direction as Lightning raced up into the clouds. The dragon wavered, and Fang tossed a bolt of fire into its eye. It snarled, more angry than hurt, and shot after her as Vanille reached into her pockets and grabbed several handfuls of small, red spheres. The red head lobbed the spheres at the dragon, and the beast roared as dozens of small explosions blanketed its body.
Enraged, the dragon rounded on Vanille, and Fang bit back a curse. Vanille wasn't good enough in the air to evade the dragon, and at this distance, she wasn't sure she could reach the red head in time. But before the dragon could reach Vanille, there was a crack of thunder and the clouds above the dragon came apart.
Lightning dived toward the dragon, her mismatched wings folded shut. Electricity seethed around one of her hands, and the dragon banked to try and dodge, but it was pointless. Lightning was far, far too agile in the air. Lightning slammed one hand into the dragon's side, and it shrieked as electricity crackled over its body. It plummeted several hundred feet before it managed to regain control over its body. It gave them one last furious glare and then fled.
"Well," Fang said as the three of them landed on top of a deserted building. "That could have gone better."
Fang groaned and pried herself out of the wall that Lightning had punched her into. "Maybe next time," she groaned. "We could find one that's moved out of the nest."
Their new plan seemed reasonable enough, but it was far from successful. If anything, things went even worse as adolescent dragon after adolescent dragon turned on Fang, and it wasn't long before they decided to try their luck at the lake. Dragons loved the heat, and they might have more success bonding with dragons that were in a better mood. Besides, they could hardly do worse, considering that most of the dragons they'd met so far had tried to eat Fang.
They edged their way along the shores of the fiery lake, careful to keep their distance from the huge, winged leviathans that wallowed in the shadows. Fang tried to approach a few of the smaller dragons that frolicked in the lava, but each time she was met with bared teeth and blasts of fire.
Just as she was about to give up – and try and tease Lightning into trying – she noticed a commotion along the far shore of the lake. There were several adolescent dragons there, each about forty feet long. They were splashing about in the lava, hacking and clawing at something, and the fire they spat made it clear that this was more than a petty squabble.
"What's that?" Fang asked, tugging Lightning and Vanille along.
They made their way closer, and Fang's eyes widened as one of the dragons was hurled out of the lake, its stomach ripped open and one of its wings torn off. An instant later, the lava parted as the dragon at the centre of the melee retreated onto the beach. Fang gasped. It wasn't unusual for dragons to be darkly coloured, but she'd never seen a black one before, never mind one with violet eyes. That must be why the others were attacking it – it's unusual colouring made it an easy target.
But what the dragon lacked in numbers, it made up for in ferocity. As the others closed in, it snarled in defiance. Its body was covered in wounds, but it refused to give in. Anything it could reach, it gouged and ripped and tore. When it could, the black dragon reared back and breathed fire into the faces of its attackers. The battle dragged on for several minutes, until the other dragons finally backed away. Despite being alone, the black dragon was not the easy prey they had expected.
Yet the black dragon's victory had been costly. One of its wings was broken, and its flanks were badly torn. As the other dragons flew back to the city, it dragged itself away from the lake and toward a collection of smaller ruins nestled amongst the hills nearby. It was an outcast, Fang realised, perhaps because of its colour.
"That one," Fang whispered. "That's the one."
Vanille stared. "Are you crazy?"
Fang shook her head and stepped forward. "No, I can feel it. That's the dragon for me."
Lightning pursed her lips. "Fang, are you sure?"
Fang nodded firmly. "Absolutely."
"Then we'll go get it." Lightning sighed. "But be carefully. Every dragon we've met so far has tried to eat you."
The three of them followed the dragon back to its lair, and Fang watched as it tended to its wounds as best it could. She felt something inside her tighten. She could remember the days when she and Vanille had been alone, before she'd tamed the Hell hounds and claimed a small patch of the Black Forest for them to live in. She knew what it was like to fight tooth and nail for every scrap of food and recognition. Hell had no place for weaklings.
"Stay here," Fang whispered.
Before the others could object, she stepped out into the open. The dragon hissed and bared its teeth as smoke billowed from between its jaws, but Fang held her ground. The dragon's mind brushed against hers, and she forced herself to relax.
"You're a fighter." Fang grinned. "I like that, because I'm the same. I know what it's like to have to fight every day for what little you can call your own." She lifted one hand and formed one of the few healing spells she knew. "Let me help you."
The dragon snarled, but there was far less venom in it. It wasn't used to being treated kindly, Fang realised. And although it was wary, it was also hurt and exhausted. Slowly, she walked forward and let the healing magic flow into the worst of the dragon's wounds before she readied another spell. The touch on her mind grew less forceful and more curious.
"My name is Fang," she said. "And I think we should be friends. I saw you fight, and you're tough, but you could use a little help. So could I, now and then, and it's better to have friends than to be alone." She flicked her head toward Lightning and Vanille. "We know what it's like to be alone, and we're all happier now that we're together." She extended one hand. "Join us."
There was a rush of movement and suddenly the dragon was only a hair's breadth away. The connection between her and the dragon grew stronger, and she swayed as the dragon's thoughts and memories washed over her.
The dragon's name was Bahamut, and he had been the runt of the litter, always smaller, and weaker, and the wrong colour. But he had grown strong. Abandoned by his mother and siblings, his life had been a constant struggle, and each battle had hardened him. There was no place for him in the ruins, so he had found his own on the other side of the lake. While the other dragons had been coddled, he had grown cunning and fierce. But he was lonely, although perhaps, he would not have to be lonely anymore.
Fang reeled back as the dragon's thoughts faded. She knew, in some instinctive way, that the contact had not been one way. He had read her thoughts and seen her memories, and he was pleased by what he'd seen. Slowly, reverently, she reached out to touch Bahamut's snout. He stilled to permit the touch, and she felt a fire ignite in the corner of her soul. He was hers now, and she was his.
"Come on," Fang cried, waving Vanille and Lightning over. "We need to get him healed." She smirked. "And we need to plan a surprise for those other dragons too."
X X X
Fang grinned as Bahamut settled atop of one of the tallest building in the City of Ruin. Since their first meeting, he had grown much stronger, and much larger, and he had clawed his way to the top. There were a few dragons that could match his power, but they had an agreement of sorts to split the ruins between them.
The only downside to Bahamut's increased size was the fact that he could no longer fit in Fang's chambers in the palace. He could lounge about outside, but the High Mother seemed to find it amusing to send demons that had displeased her to fight the dragon. The resulting battles were hilariously one-sided, but some of the demons had given Bahamut a bad case of indigestion.
Since Bahamut could no longer come to the palace, Fang made sure to visit him whenever she could. It was just a pity that the Balance was in place. During the War, the two of them had carved a bloody swathe through the ranks of Heaven, and devastated countless worlds. Vanille also visited quite often, and the pair seemed to have a shared love of fire and destruction.
The only one who never visited Bahamut anymore was Lightning. The dragon missed her, for in the old days, Lightning had often spent hours flying with him and Fang. He understood, in a rough way, that Heaven was responsible for Lightning's absence, which explained at least some of the fury that overtook him whenever he and Fang fought Heaven. One day, Fang promised, they would all be together again, her, Lightning, Vanille, and Bahamut,
With a sigh, she turned her attention back to her students. Two of them had managed to bond with a dragon, but she'd already been forced to intervene several times. Despite her earlier words, she wasn't going to let any of them be eaten. They had received far too much training to allow that, and a near death experience or two should provide added incentive to train harder.
Her lips curled as she realised that one of her students, Fujin, had managed to bond with a dragon. How fitting. The young demon had silver hair and a single, bloody eye. Judging by its colouring, the dragon she'd bonded with was one of Bahamut's children, and like Fujin, the dragon had only one eye.
"Well," Fang remarked. "At least this way, they'll have a pair of eyes between them."
Bahamut's chuckle shook the building.
Fang pursed her lips. It was at time like this that she missed Lightning the most. Lightning should be there beside her, making fun of the younger demons, not sitting somewhere in Heaven with a bunch of arrogant fools who couldn't hope to understand her the way Fang did. Bahamut sensed her unease and rumbled unhappily.
"Easy there," Fang said. "I'll see her again, and maybe one day, I'll be able to smuggle her down to see you." She smirked as an idea occurred to her. "I could even take her prisoner. Of course, I'd have to torture her horribly, although I suppose there are other ways I could make her scream."
X X X
As always, I neither own Final Fantasy, nor am I making any money off of this.
This chapter was a bit of a disaster zone at first. Most of the time I only need to write something twice (first draft and then final copy), but this is the fourth version of this chapter since the others were pretty bad.
Anyway, this chapter takes us back to the past again. As you can see, Lightning's past in Hell was, for the most, a happy one, although she was obligated to spend time in Heaven. As the child of the High Mother and the High Father she is the ultimate bargaining chip in Heaven/Hell politics. I also wanted to go into the past because the romance between Fang and Lightning takes a more prominent role in this story than in some of my others, as a result, it's important that I develop the characters and their shared past properly. For people wanting more steamy stuff, don't worry, we're only three chapters in. I wouldn't expect a full lemon, however, despite requests from certain individuals that I write one. If I ever do one, I would probably do it for Ordinary Heroes since those readers have been asking longer.
I also have two other things to mention. First, my laptop screen has decided to die on me, which, as you can imagine, makes writing on my laptop very difficult (and I do almost all of my writing on my laptop). On the upside, I can plug my laptop into my television, but that's not exactly an optimal solution, although that was how I managed to get this chapter written. The other thing I wanted to mention is that redkid11 has a comic up on her deviant art account of Chapter 11 of Whispers of the Gods (it's called 'Lightning Without Thunder'). I strongly urge you to go have a look. It's very awesome, and it has my official, author stamp of approval!
As always, I appreciate feedback. Reviews and comments are welcome.