2-X (Interlude)

Interlude 2

I don’t remember when I was born. Nobody really does. They say when I was born though, that it was a miracle. They told me that I was a premature birth, the doctors told my parents that I wouldn’t make it. I was too small, too weak. When I was born and they heard me cry, they said they’d never felt so relieved. My mother, she told me she’d never forget the look on my face when I calmed down. It was auspicious, they said. Like all Farborn children, I had an event around my birth.

I’ve heard the story many times by my papa. I can recite it word for word. The room felt light, like we were full of helium, like it filled us from head to toe, in our bones and in our lungs. I saw your mother’s hair, drifting up like she was underwater, and I saw the glass of water on the table rise, the water inside rising higher, right until it was almost above my head. And just as quickly, it lowered down, gently on the invisible, untouchable breeze in the air. That was when I knew, you were a miracle, my little Erendira, my princess.

Papa always had a flare for dramatics. I’m reminded of that as I look at our house. He spared no expense to make it lavish. The tiles beneath my feet are a dusty orange, spread across a courtyard circled in by white marble walls. The kind that look like rows of little banisters, with a block on top, and every so often there’s a plant pot on top with some kind of colourful flowers. Marble, everywhere. The only colour that’s here that isn’t white is the pale orange wall around the front door. Two steps up, you go between two of the four marble pillars, like they were taken from rome, framing the three doors on the front of the house. Above them was more marble, banisters that wall away the balcony from above. The other walls were covered, in long glass windows that opened onto balconies.

I know where each and every cent that was used to make this house came from. I try not to think about it, as I glance around. The sky is clear, with no clouds as far as I can see. Too nice of a day, too beautiful. No doubt papa has already taken a swim in the pool, even if it’s only just turned twelve noon.

Taking a deep breath, I sigh and let it all out. The exhale feels cathartic but I don’t have the time to wait around and enjoying the view. I walk over, my footsteps feeling unusually light. I haven’t even used my powers yet. I guess it must be adrenaline. I feel uneasy. I want to run, but I know I have to stay. I know I have to speak to my father, and I know he won’t listen to me. It’s how it always has been. He’s stubborn, I inherited that from him. But he doesn’t understand. Today, he has to bend the knee, just this once. I’ll do everything I can to try and convince him, but the pit of my stomach says I’ll fail.

I walk over to the door, and I take a look inside. It’s quiet, unusually so. Normally, my papa has had some sort of lavish party that had carried on from the previous night. I half expected there to be a coke addled drug dealer sprawled on the porch, or at least the sound of fucking coming from the second floor, with the windows opened wide enough for anybody to crawl inside. I guess he truly didn’t care about his security, today. Not a single gun or hired thug in sight. It’s a change, refreshing to say the least, but not enough to make me think he’d lost all leave of his senses.

This will make things easier for me. I’m facing the door now, and it’s slightly ajar. I listen again, to see if I can hear what’s going on, and all that returns to me is silence.

I raise my hand and flex my fingers, feeling them brush against the leather of my gloves. The way my powers work, it doesn’t come out from me. I just feel it inside, and feel it outside as well where I will it to be. It comes so natural to me now. I focus on the area around the door, how it swings itself open, and I change which way is up, and make it so that gravity pulls it in the way it’d open for me. The door on its hinges starts to drop open, as gravity pulls it down. Before it slams against the wall, I dismiss the effect, and it gently slides to a halt.

It’s a lot of thinking, how I use my powers, to just open a door. Papa’s men think I’m telekinetic, that I can move things with my mind. They’re fools, all of them. No better than the American pigs across the border.

I take my steps inside, and I take my time. Walking carefully, listening. Just in case. I doubt there’s an ambush, but I’d rather not be caught unprepared if there was one.

I remember when they put this red carpet in, the weeks it took them to put it in all around the house. To my left and right are doors, and a large staircase wide enough for three to walk side by side is ahead of me. Once you’re at the top, you reach the back wall, and you have to go left or right to reach the other rooms on the second floor. On the wall are many paintings, with statues littered between them to give them the illusion of proper spacing. Marble busts, even more marble, that look like they were taken from Rome. My papa’s attempt to appear cultured.

I make my way over to the stairs, and I infuse the area with more of my power. I’ve known for a long time I can’t change my own gravity, to make myself light. I wanted to fly, I always thought I could, but it won’t work, not unless I push myself to the limit. I can change the gravity around me though. The entire staircase, I see the dust already beginning to trail out of the carpet, dirt and mud lifting up like it was glowing. When I step up and hop up, I don’t land on the first step, nor the second or third. I drift up like I was on the moon, and I float down until I gently land on the floor. Once I’m up, I return the stairs to normal, and begin walking away, turning to the right.

On second thoughts, I look down at the stairs from above. I raise my hand, and the dust on the stairs plummets. To cover myself in case anybody does come after me, I make sure the gravity is twice as heavy coming up the stairs. People will drop what they’re holding, I’ll hear them coming. Satisfied, I press on.

I make my way to the last door. Papa’s bedroom. Today, it doesn’t smell like stale sweat and sex. I can only assume he might be sober. I don’t think that’ll make things easier. I grab the handle and push the door open, and take a look inside.

Lavish, just like I remember it. Polished wood on the floors and on the walls, with a wooden divide around the middle of the wall with a knotted sort of pattern running along it. There’s the elaborate fireplace directly infront of me, his king sized pour post bed to the right. To the left corner furthest away from me is a flat screen television hung on the wall, and on the left wall is a large crucifix. In the middle of the room is a large, bearskin rug.

As I stpe inside, I look to the left corner and find him sitting there, in an armchair next to the glass table. Stains of white powder and spilled drinks haven’t been cleaned away for days. There he is, sleeping away. His hair looks just a little more grey than usual, he’s made no effort to lose the weight on his belly, and he’s sitting there in a white vest, white underwear and a thick fur dressing gown.

When I step in and close the door, he rouses. I didn’t make much of an attempt to be quiet about it. He grunts and rubs his face, feeling the stubble already forming. He grunts, wearily opening his eyes, then stares around the room with a groan, wincing away from the light coming in from the large window. I move to the centre of the room and face him, one hand on my hip. He looks up at me, takes a second to think about it, then a smile grows on his face.

“Ah!” He starts to sit up properly and cover himself up with his gown. The last stand to attain some dignity. “My beautiful daughter. I thought you were your mother for a second.” He tells me in Spanish. I frown and roll my eyes. He’s a charming man, I can see how he got to where he is today. “What brings you here? What time is it?”

“It is eleven minutes past twelve.” I don’t tell him why I’m here yet. I need to see if he knows, and if he’ll take it seriously. I take another look around the room. The crucifix to my right looks big enough to have been the one they hung Jesus on. It even has nails where hands should be. I’m not sure if that’s a blasphemy or not. Probably. Christ isn’t here, that’s for sure.

“So late already.” He yawns and starts stretching. I can hear joints pop and crack, and I cringe. That noise just goes right through me. He stands up, and begins to bring his robes together, tying them together with a crude double knot. “Not that I’ve missed much. It is the Lord’s day after all, and He commands us to rest.”

I roll my eyes again, and take my hand off my hip. “Papa. It’s today. He’s coming today for you, like he promised.”

“Who?” He asks. He’s still not totally awake yet, and he’s stretching again. Luckily, nothing pops out of place. He scratches his chin, hearing the fingers go through the coarse hairs. I think he’s realising he needs a shave. “Oh, yes, yes. That’s today? I didn’t realise.”

I don’t think he honestly cares. Why would he? He thinks he’s invincible, he thinks that he can take a few deadbeats with guns and shoot Malachi and his problems will be over. He’s a fool.

“Yes, today. Malachi is coming for you today. He’ll be here in an hour, and you’ve been sleeping all morning. Aren’t you afraid? You’ve heard what he’s done, what he’s going to do-”

“No.” He cuts me off. “I’m not afraid of some child. He’s an angry kid with powers who is throwing a tantrum. I’m not afraid of him.”

“You should be afraid of him.” This isn’t how it’s meant to be. Listen to sense, please, papa.”

“Listen.” He takes a step towards me. “You’re young. I’ve seen a lot of things in my life. Do you remember when you were younger when I took you out with me, to deal with those Coyotes and their gangs? They stole my shipments, they tried to sell my product. What did I do with them, Erendira?”

I pause. I know what he did, but I just don’t want to say it. As bad as it sounds to say this, I know what’ll happen today will be so much worse than what he did to those men and women. I can see him waiting, his patience growing thin.

“What did I do with them?” He asks again. His tone is growing impatient.

“You took them, you took their families, and you dragged them out to the desert, and you made them kiss the sand and beg for their lives, before you put a bullet in the back of their skulls.” I still remember it. It was the first time I heard a gunshot. My papa didn’t want me to see it, but he couldn’t leave me in the house alone. I was just fifteen when it happened. He didn’t trust me, being so young and vulnerable, near a few of his ‘lieutenants’. I still remember their cries, their screams, the sound of the children pleading and sobbing. “And you made your own daughter think it was okay to execute men, women and children in cold blood.”

“Yes.” He said, simply and bluntly. “That’s true. And you’ve become a much stronger person for it. It had to be done. Here’s the thing.” He gestures to the room around him with open arms. “If you ask anybody on the streets who not to fuck with, they say ‘Tomas Sarachaga’. They won’t fuck with me because they know better. This little boy and his pets, they don’t know better. But he will, he’ll know not to fuck with me.”

“He’s not just some kid. This is Malachi. Drug dealers killed his father. You’re just like the men who put him in this position, Papa.”

“His father was a cop that tried to beat the cartels. What did he think was going to happen? He’s doing the exact same thing as his papa, and the same thing’s going to happen to him.” Papa starts pacing back and forth. He shoots me a glare. “And I’m nothing like those men. I’m still alive.”

“You won’t be for long.” I’m trying to stay clam but I know I can’t. I step forward, opening my arms out. “He’s going to kill you! I don’t want you to die. Please, just… just surrender to him. Say you’ll join him. I don’t want to lose you like we lost mama.”

He turns to me, and I can see that look on his face. He knows when somebody is trying to pull something over him, especially when I brought her up.

“You try to use your mother’s death to convince me? I’m not sure if I should be offended that my daughter has the balls, or lacks the decency to do that.”

“She wouldn’t want you to do this. She’d say the same thing as me.”

“The woman I fell in love with would tell me to stand up against him. She wouldn’t marry a coward who backed down when things weren’t going his way.”

I stare back at him and speak before I think. “You know that’s not what she’d say. Don’t desecrate her memory trying to justify this, this… suicide.”

I didn’t realise how much I’d raised my voice until papa turned to me, looking shocked. Appalled, as if I’d just slapped him in the face. He walks a step towards me and raises his hand, finger pointing at me, accusing me of everything that’s going to happen.

“I will not have my own daughter speak to me like this.” I can feel my heart beat out of time in my chest. Something is telling me to back down but I can’t. I’m going to have to force myself to stay, and I try not to look like I’m hurt. “You will show your papa some respect.”

I hesitate. I didn’t mean to, but he’s my papa. I can’t help it. I know he can be like this and I know I need to… For a second, I think that I can do this. I felt that doubt, that reluctance, that desire to keep things as they are. But it can’t be this way.

“It’s very hard to respect you, when you- when you say what you say to me, when you think you can just walk away from this. This isn’t just another Sunday where you have to sleep until noon. Papa, please!”

“No!” He shouts, then starts walking past me. He walks over to his bed and grabs the pillow, removing a gun, a pistol, and checking the clip to see how many bullets he had. He pulls the slot back, and it clicks together. I don’t know how guns work, but I know that one’s ready to be used. He tucks it into the belt of his gown, then looks at me again. “That is the last I’ll say of this, Erendira. We Sarachaga, we don’t bend the knee, we survive and we rule. That is that. I’ll hear nothing more of this.”

It was a bad idea. I predicted it, yes. He is too proud, too stubborn. I’m exactly the same. Everybody in our family is like this, but I’m different. Everything my papa has shown me, has made me do, has made me jaded, and made me realise that you need conviction and to do what must be done in order to keep going, to survive. Papa won’t survive, not if he isn’t willing to submit, just once.

I take a deep breath.

“Then, I will have to tell Malachi on your behalf that you intend to surrender, and join if he needs us.”

Everything just stops. He doesn’t look at me, not just yet. The air grows thick, bloated with tension and suspense. His head cranes around to me slowly, and I see something new in his eyes. Paranoia, betrayal, malice. I have prayed many nights that I do not see this side of papa, and for good reason. Even I know not to piss him off.

“What did you just say to-”

Don’t think, act. I can’t let him treat me like anybody else he can just dispose of. I raise my hand, and I alter the gravity in the room. I change the gravity from down below him, to the wall behind him, and make it twice as strong. At the same time, I make my own gravity change from below me, to the wall behind me, to get distance. I float back a few feet, and dismiss the effect over me. After he hits, I return the gravity back to normal.

Papa flies backwards and slams into the wall, hard. The impact is loud, like he was just hit by a car. I hear bones crack, the wall shattering away, I hear him choke and gasp for the air that was just knocked out of him lungs, a low gurgling in the back of his throat. Does it feel this much worse knowing just who I’m doing this to?

I thought I’d knocked him unconscious but he starts to slowly raise his head up, in a jerky motion. Tenacious of him. He manages to get his eyes on me the moment I see a trickle of blood start to run from the back of his head down his temple. That look of anger and hate has gone. Nothing left there, except an acceptance. It doesn’t make this feel easier.

He knows what’s going to happen next.

I’ve done this a few times before. Draining, but the results are always the same. Increase the gravity from underneath the person, and increase the gravity beneath them, moving towards the centre. Humans can survive a gradual increase in gravity well enough. I’ve read about this. People can take twice the earth’s gravity with no ill effect. This force is sudden, coming from above and below him. I have to dismiss everything else, the hold I have over the stairs, just to push this out. A hundred times stronger, from above and below, happening in less than half a second

I bring my hands together and shut my eyes.

I can feel his body break, snap, crush and pulp. I can hear it. My powers, they give me some feedback, so I know what I’m feeling when I use my powers. Skin splitting, muscles being torn apart by pure force, bone smashed and pulverised. I can only force that much gravity together for a second, maybe even two, but that’s all it needs before it ends. When I open my eyes, it’s no less gruesome. A mass of torn skin, flesh and body mass, splattered to the floor. The blood sprayed out sideways, as the gravity stopped it from spraying up the wall. Sort of like when you squeeze a grape, it-

No. No, no no. I can’t believe I just compared him to a piece of squashed fruit. The reality is starting to hit me. That was my papa, the one man that took care of me. He fed me, he bought me clothes, he was the one that looked after me when mama passed away. He was always there for me. I remember when he took me to the park, my sixteenth birthday, he, he- oh Jesus Christ, lord please forgive me.

I look at that mass of flesh, and I can’t help it. Tears well up inside of me. Just as quick as it hit me, I feel my stomach start to make knots of itself, and I grab it as I fall to my knees.

Throwing up never felt this violent, but I’m starting to sob. Tears streak down my face as I empty the contents of my stomach out. Gross. This is bad. This is so fucked up.

I take a minute to finish up, crying loudly. I don’t care if anybody hears me. I vent it all out and wipe my mouth on one of the bedsheets.

No. No, I- He wasn’t a good man. He had Matehuala by the balls for decades. He was a drug lord, a murderer, a human trafficker. He’s done so much fucked up shit, I’ve seen so much fucked up shit that he’s done, and how much money he’s earned by doing it. He was the worst person in the world, and he was my father, and I loved him, and he loved me, right to the end, even when I crushed his body to a pulp.

I’m the heir to his estate, and I’ve never felt this fucked up before.

I have to think. Malachi would have killed him anyway. He would have fed him to one of those things or worse. If he managed to survive, it would have been a battle of attrition. I’d have to fight him, and we’d lose. But we’d have lost together, father and daughter.

No. We survive. I’m going to feel bad about this but this was the only way to make sure that I live, that I saved him from a worse fate. If I keep telling myself this, maybe I’ll be able to live with it.

I was already going to hell. This was just another tally, another mark that Lucifer himself would count. I already know what fate will await me.

I look at the body again and pretend it’s not him. It’s a mass of flesh and tissue that was a human. I don’t need to clean it up. Malachi will come and he’ll either kill me or take me away. I’ll never return here, and if he spares me, he can protect me. This was just the last straw needed to break away from this. Maybe we will move onto something far greater. Maybe he’ll do it. Malachi could purge Mexico, make our country great again.

Maybe I’m being hopeful that he won’t kill me.

I stand up now and compose myself. I take a look around, look at my situation. I’d take the gun but it’s in pieces, some flatter than others. I turn and go to the door, and take a second to look away. One last look before I close this door, and walk outside.

I go and shower. I make it quick, but I have to be careful. With hair this long and thick, I make sure to take my time. Once I’m done, I go out and go into my bedroom here and put on a fresh set of clothes.

A plain white bra with matching underwear. A white shirt with long sleeves, black pants. I put a tan skirt over that, it only covers my thighs. I put on my leather gloves and boots I was wearing before, some kind of dark colour, and I take one of my leather coats out of my wardrobe. It’s a light brown, somewhere between the colour of my skirt and my boots and gloves, it reaches just to my calves.

I take a quick look in the mirror and stare back at myself. Papa always said I had my mother’s eyes, a deep brown. I see the scar on the left side of my lips, when I got into a fight when I was younger. Some boys at school thought that picking on a girl was funny, until I punched one and broke his nose. Then, they attacked me, and cut my face before I flung them ten feet in the air. They were put into hospital. Good. They deserved it, the pigs.

The ground beneath me is trembling. I can feel it. His host, he calls it, is almost here. I breathe in, breathe out. Fate is waiting for me.

When I know something bad is going to happen, I stay really calm. It’s extremely useful. I make my way out and go downstairs, making my way out of the house. I wince a little as the sun hits me, and I stare at the sky for a second. I drag my gaze down to the horizon, and it looks like it’s raised.

No. Not raised. It’s like a tidal wave. An encroaching wall of flesh that barges through the landscape. Has he brought them all, every one under his thrall? No wonder nobody could resist him. He has this much to just brute force through every situation, whilst he comfortably sits back and lets them do his work.

But what if it wasn’t everything he had? What if this was just the tip of his spear, the vanguard? I dread to think of just how much he has at his disposal. Yet even still, it’s not the worst thing that’s happened today.

All I have to do is wait.

As they come closer, I can start to see some features of them. They’re all unique, all different. A mass, teeming, different sized and shapes. Some with tentacles pulling them across the ground, some more like large beasts with many limbs. Yet even as they were all unique in their own ways, their own structures, a wave like this looked so… indistinct. And as he came closer, I could see him.


His face was covered, by a mask. Something mexican, recently crafted. Extremely good quality. Possibly wood or metal, it was hard to tell. It looked lightly molded to his face, vague human features, no gap for his nose, just two slits for his eyes. It had a strap around it, and on the back of it was a halo, held up in place, hovering behind him. I expected the lips to split open at any moment, it looked so real.

He had body armour on, looks like something the police might wear for a raid. It was a sort of grey, with a hint of yellow or green. Lemon grass, I think the name is. There was cloth, like a tabard, hung from his belt that covered over his knees. He wore pauldrons that made his shoulders look square, and a cape covered from his sternum and upper arms. The cloth he wore was all the same colour, like a deep, pale purple. Salt Box, that’s what it’s called. Those art lessons my papa paid for have been useless, except for now, when I identify the colour of the armour of the man conquering Mexico.

He wasn’t a man though. He wasn’t much taller than me, he didn’t have muscle. He could be a teenager, or nearly leaving the teen years.

But right now, he was standing on top of the back of some shelled Eldritch that looked like a mixture of a crab and a bear, with tentacles writhing along its belly, arms slightly spread out.

He eventually approached, but the remainder of his forces hung back. The single creature holding him aloft was all that was brought forward, and he approached me. He was twenty feet from me, and he walked forward. As if he telepathically willed the beast, it raised its claws up, almost half as big as the creature itself and as if it didn’t even notice that weight, and he stepped down. Walking effortlessly from its back, its claws used as steps.

People say that he looks like an angel. Now I can see why. If the Lord had sent him down to cleanse the Earth, he would have sent Malachi to do it. Part of me thought he had.

Malachi walked on the ground now, his cloak gently wafting behind him. He kept his gaze on me, it was fierce. I didn’t baulk.

“I am here to pass judgement on Tomas Sarachaga.” He said in English. His voice was so young, so scarred by what happened. He sounded well beyond jaded, as if there was just fire inside keeping him going.

I responded in Spanish. “Tomas Sarachaga is dead.”

He tilted his head, and spoke in Spanish this time. He seemed to have caught on. “You killed him.”

“I did.” I said. I tried to sound remorseless, but it was so hard. I almost stuttered, but I had to look strong. “He was my father.”

“You killed your father.” He said, tilting his head back upright. He took a single step forward. “It was a great sin. You knew who he was, what he’d done. You’ve done the right thing.”

“The lord wouldn’t forgive me. I did what had to be done.”

“God?” He says. He turns around to the beast behind him, and it takes a single step back. It’s movements are so alien. It’s trying to move like a crab or a person would, but its body doesn’t seem to cooperate as much. “It’s hard to believe God is with anybody lately. Christian?”

“Yes.” I said. I wasn’t going to speak out of line. My odds weren’t great. If I had to fight him now, I could possibly kill him. Crush him like my father, but I’d be open to attack, and all the Eldritch here might run rampant if he wasn’t controlling them. It made me think; how strong was he? He had an army, numbering in thousands, tens of thousands, even more. Creatures of all size, bending to his will. Here he was, speaking to me normally. No effort expended on his half, with the finesse to control a single creature in an uncountable swarm.

I began to truly feel how little I was compared to all of this, so out of my depth. Thinking about it made it worse.

“I am too.” He said, turning around. “I read, about great wars. Wars of religion in the middle east, when I was young, at the end of the nineties. They taught me them in school. People asked, why would God allow the Farside to exist? Why would god make Farborn, Fartouched? In what vision of His do these creatures, the Eldritch, walk about freely? All faiths felt the same.”

He paused and turned around. Showing me his back, did he really feel that unthreatened by me? I wasn’t exactly being confrontational.

“They killed each other. Especially in the Middle East. Hundreds of thousands slaughtered. They thought it was hell on earth. The apocalypse. Revelations, the end times. All at once. Anybody touched by the Farside, any Eldritch, were demons that needed to be sent back to hell. It all ended. We used technology, made from the Farside. They calmed everyone with new guns, they settled everyone. The world was at peace again.”

He continued, turning back to me. “What is your name?”

“Erendira. Erendira Liliana Sarachaga.”

“Erendira. Are you Farborn?”

“Yes.” I nodded.

“You are blessed, or cursed. However you want to look at it. I am too. I can touch these Eldritch, and they are under my control.” To demonstrate, the creature closest to us raised its claws in the air. “As we talk, my Eldritch are down in Chipas, Tabasco. They are liberating the people from the corruption. The drug lords, the criminals, the cartels.”

“You are doing that from here?” He really is that powerful.

He nods. “I can sense through them. In a way, there’s no strain on me. It helps that I can make as many or as little do as I wish. I pushed myself. It took a lot of time, a lot of pain, but I am master over my gifts.”

I nod again. How do you respond to this? It’s so hard to fathom. So much to think about, and he can do it so easily? I’m powerful, but this is something on another level. If I’ve won a hand of poker, he won the lottery.

“What do you think they are?” He said, arm out, sweeping behind him.

I think about it for a second, staring at the mass of bodies and aliens at his command. When I was younger, I thought they were demons. Now, I’m not so sure what they are. Angels, demons, nightmares made flesh. They are the Farside, given the forms of warped beasts.

“I don’t know.”

“I don’t think they’re angels. I don’t think they’re demons either. But God made me this way. He made me Farborn, and he gave me the ability to control them. I think if he has a plan for me, this is part of it. This may be just what he wanted for Mexico.”

I nod again. He is self assured, to say the least. Maybe just driven for revenge.

“The people who stood against me will receive His judgement. The people that stand with me will have blood on their hands, but their hands are stained the blood of sinners. Where do you stand?”

I don’t take long to answer him. “I stand with Matehuela. I stand with Mexico. You already have most of it, so I stand with you.”

He nods. “Good. You may be powerful. I need powerful Farborn, Fartouched, who believe that God is still out there, watching us. You will join me?”

He extends his hand out. I have to take a step forward to grab it. A step of faith. Symbolic, a little pretentious. I don’t think he realises it. I’m just overthinking. I’m surprised that he’s taken me on so quickly. Could he be impressed? Naïve?

I step forward and take his hand. His grip is firm, much firmer than mine.

“Yes. I will.”

“Good.” He lets go.

“Why do you call yourself Malachi?” I ask him. If we’re going to ally, I want to know a bit more about him.

“Malachi was a messenger, a prophet. He wrote the Book of Malachi. It is Jewish, but I thought the name was fitting. It means ‘messenger of God’.”

“Ah. Yes, very fitting. You and your ‘angels’.”

He looks behind him for a second. I can see in the distance, some creatures float above. Bulbous, like giant sacks of air with teeth or claws hanging from the bottom of it, drifting on the breeze.

“I guess they are.” He says. “What do you call yourself?”

“I don’t call myself anything.”

“What are your powers?”

I look to my side. I catch a glimpse of one of the plant pots, and I raise my arm, outstretched towards it. I change the gravity so it’s supposed to go up instead of down, gently. It begins to pull away, and Malachi watches intently. I lower it down just a second afterwards.


“Gravity.” I correct him.

“You used your powers to kill your father?” He asked. It was a piercing question, but he was only curious by the tone of his voice. I nod.

“Yes. I crushed him.”

“Crush.” He said that in English. I blink slightly at the change of language, but then he says it in Spanish. “Abrumar. So they know what to expect.”

It takes me a second but I realise what he means. I nod. Fitting, if anything, though I can’t help but feel that every time somebody will say that, it will reflect in me. What I did to earn that title.

“Abrumar, the left hand. Taypoa, the right. He is, what you call, geokinetic. He controls the Earth, the sands. He is powerful as well. It’s all fitting. You control what holds everyone together. He controls the ground beneath us. I control the Eldritch inbetween.” He nods, still staring to the wall of creatures. “You will meet soon, and then we can carry on with our work.”

“What is your plan?”

I want to change the conversation. He turns back to me, locking eyes with me once more.

“I will take Mexico. All the people that are my allies will help me rebuild our country. Then, I will demand answers.”

“From who?”

“America.” Does he hate the American pigs as much as I do? He carries on talking. “I will go to the border that they use to keep us out, and I will ask that they let me in. I will demand that their government, their President, tells us why they have allowed all this crime, this corruption, to stain Mexico, when they could have helped us.”

“Good. I will definitely stand by your side.”

He squints a little beneath his mask. “You don’t like the Americans.”

I shake my head. “No. I dislike their culture, their language. They haven’t done a thing to help us. They boarder us in like animals, like cattle, and they make a mockery of us and our culture. I will spit on their corpses. I have no remorse for them.”

He pauses. Is he judging me, or does he agree? I hope he does.

“Anger is a good motivation.”

“What happens when we arrive at the gates, and they turn us away?”

“Then their silence is the only answer I need. Their refusal is their answer. I haven’t been denied my will here. I won’t be denied it there. I will walk away.” He says. “And I will plan. One way or another, I will make them talk. I have something, something hidden well. I will show you. I don’t want to ruin the surprise, but you’ll see why I’m so confident.”

I nod. He spoke as if he knew exactly what he wanted. It was all planned out to him. He wanted this peacefully, even willing to give them a chance. I wouldn’t have been so merciful.

The beast behind us starts to move over, and arranges its claws into steps again. Malachi begins to walk away from me, and steps up them. Once again, he wills the Eldritch to move as he wants it to, hoisting him up effortlessly. Once he’s on its back, he turns and waits. I take the hint and I walk over. I climb up, much less gracefully, but he holds his hand out and extends it for me to reach. With my feet firmly on his back, the Eldritch begins to turn and walks to the wall of entities behind us, who are already beginning to turn around.

As we move away, eventually moving out of sight, I take a single look back at the house. As if all the memories flood to me at once, I turn away, wreaked with sudden guilt and sadness. My life is physically moving away from me, out of my reach, out of my control, on the back of a force so powerful, I had no choice.

I turn from Malachi to avoid letting him see me cry. Something tells me, he saw, and he knew. Perhaps that’s why he took me on, knowing I did something so grave, that I had the conviction to do so.

My house eventually becomes a distant speck on the horizon, and as it fades out of view, I knew my old life had faded from me just as quickly.