Zero Distance Prayers
Prayer One: First Impressions.
The presence of the God of Light inside the Holy Temple was kept a secret among the Pope and the Twelve Holy Knights. Even though they still weren't sure about how to properly address him in private, in front of others they called him by the name he had given.
"The used to be a name I used..." He put on a concentrated frown. "Lig, Dritë, Licht... Guang, Bich, Limyè... No, it wasn't one of those. Let me see... Lumo, Valgus, Valo, Svet... Garjazla... No, definitely not that. Galad? No, but it was almost that... Calad! Yes, that is it, you can call me Calad."
It wasn't that the God of Light – or Calad, as they had agreed calling him – wasn't an easy-going person, but it was just...
"... awkward!" The following morning found Earth following Leaf around the corridors of the Holy Temple, complaining about his luck. "I suppose it must not be so bad to you, because you are a 'really nice guy', Leaf, but I have the feeling that he knows exactly how I am and it d-doesn't h-help..." He remembered stuttering when they passed someone. "... that he looks just like Sun!"
"Do you really think so?" Leaf asked distractedly. "I mean, the hair and eyes are really the same, but... Don't you think he looks like Blaze a little?"
"Blaze? No way, I mean, he is so... petite."
It was true. "Calad" looked a lot like Sun, but a head shorter. Almost like a impish younger brother.
"Yeah, but, I don't know... He seems so... energetic. Pretty much like Blaze."
"Well, since you mentioned..."
Around the Holy Temple, other conversations of the same kind where taking place.
"Don't you think he looks exactly like Knight-Captain Judgement? Except for the fact that he looks exactly like Sun?" Moon asked Metal.
"I didn't think so. There's something... right... about this guy." - because he couldn't say that there was something "wrong" with the God of Light - "Something just too awfully... 'good, warm-hearted faction' about him that pisses me off."
Moon looked around hurriedly and chided.
"You shouldn't go saying things like this."
"Storm? Are you alright?"
"Blaze? Is that you?"
"Yeah... it's me. What happened to you? Your eyes are worse than usual!"
Storm Knight's eyes were red and puffed, and twitched occasionally, as if he was winking without realizing.
"I have been working extra hard to court all the female in the Sanctuary of Light." His face as he said that was so composed that one could guess he was trying hard not to blush.
Blaze was flabbergasted.
"Sigh... It must be so good to be you, Blaze... You never had any problem with the Blaze Knight assigned character..."
"Ah, is it why the lot of you are suddenly fidgy and walking on your tip-toes?"
"Wouldn't you, if you were me, or Earth?" Or Sun, or – Storm suspected – half the "cruel, cold-hearted faction".
"..." Blaze considered the thought for one instant. "No."
"No." He shrugged. "He chose us, didn't he? Or, rather, or teachers chose us and he let them and blessed us with his favor when we assumed, right?"
"Er... right. Yeah! I think you are right, Blaze! Thank you!"
Storm's footsteps were much lighter when he walked away, leaving Blaze to wander why on earth everyone was so freaked out.
"Why on earth is everyone so freaked out?" Calad asked the Pope in a whinny tone.
The Pope couldn't quite answer that. They were having lunch in the Pope's study, so there was no chance of they being overheard, but the Pope had no idea of what would be appropriated to say. He was feeling slightly freaked out himself. Fortunately, Calad kept talking.
"I mean, it's almost as if everyone is making themselves busy on purpose, so I won't pass them on the corridors!"
"I'm sure it's just... the novelty of the situation. They'll get used to it soon." The Pope tried a comforting tone.
Calad kept using his fork to push the peas to one side and another of the plate.
"I suppose it's my own fault. I should have visited more often."
"Come on, don't be like this. I am sure you were pretty busy."
"But there was the Contract of the Gods to consider."
"The Contract of the Gods? Oh, that! Actually, there's no clause in that to prevent me to come visiting. Us gods are only forbidden to directly interfere so, as long as I don't do things, I can come as often and stay as much as I want to. And I should have done so. Shadow comes all the time."
"When you say 'Shadow'... Do you mean the Shadow God from the Shadow Cathedral?"
"And you said he comes to earth all the time?"
"Well, since the first generation I have only come personally twice, while he came about a dozen times. Besides, he always picks the next Demon King personally. If you ask me, he keeps the Shadow Cathedral in far too short reins. He likes to fancy himself as a 'Chaos Deity', but I think he's actually sort of a control freak. Or, sometimes, just a freak..."
The Pope was so surprised that he wasn't even able to laugh. There he was, the God of Light himself, talking about the Shadow God the same way a teenager would talk about another teenager, and all the time playing with the food on his plate.
"You don't need to eat the peas if you don't want to."
Surprised, Calad looked at his plate. Then he just beamed and pushed his plate aside.
"Does this mean we can have dessert already?"
Helplessly like Sun... The Pope whined.
"So bright..." Cloud muttered from his hiding place. He was currently inside a cabinet in the Judgement Complex. In fact, inside a cabinet inside the court, during one of Judgement's trials.
Usually he wouldn't come to such a dark place, but his presence here could be explained by the person hidden in the cabinet with him. It was Calad.
"Did you say something?"
"No..." Like Sun, Calad was a bright vision, but what had been puzzling Cloud was why – being the God of Light and everything else – he wasn't even brighter.
He had decided to follow Calad around the Holy Temple, and this decision had taken him to the Judgement Complex. Calad had taken a seat from where he could see both the Judgement Knight and the criminal in trial, and Cloud had hid in the cabinet exactly opposite from him, from where he could see everything. Suddenly, Calad had gotten up and walked directly to the cabinet. Then he murmured conspiratorially.
"Hey, Cloud, can I hide with you? I wanted to watch the trials, but I think it's better if I don't break Judgement's concentration."
And that was how Cloud ended up hiding inside a cabinet in Judgement complex together with the God of Light.
At least, Cloud reflected, Calad wasn't paying attention in him. He had all his attention focused in the trial in session, and Cloud wasn't sure if this was caused by the poor illumination inside the cabinet, but Calad's blue eyes suddenly seemed black.
Cloud shook his head. This must not be so. He probably only had this impression because Calad's expression was so serious. In fact, he was very glad it wasn't him receiving that gaze, because it certainly made people think about the Judgement Knight's catch phrase: "The harsh God of Light will punish your sins".
When the last criminal was dragged away begging for mercy, Cloud saw the Judgement Knight hurrying in the opposite direction with an expression as if he was sick.
"You have cool hiding places, Cloud. We should do it again any of these days." Calad said suddenly, and left the cabinet to go after Judgement.
Two notes about this chapter:
1- It seems I have some troubles dividing chapters. For example, this chapter eneded up being an introduction for the next chapter, but I couldn't help it because I really felt the dialogues between the Twelve Holy Knights were very important.
2- I needed to give the God of Light a name, both for plot and convenience's sake. I tried "Light" in all languages of Google translator, but none caught my eye, so I resorted to (Tolkien's) elven language and from a dozen words with tha same meaning chose the one I liked better.
Since this story just started, I am still trying to get things right, so reviews aren't only appreciated, they are NEEDED.