Life has hit me hard lately, so I’m falling a bit behind on my current WIP. And it’s kind of under wraps at the moment anyway. I mean, I’ve got people critiquing it, and hopefully soon it will be ready for the agent who says she wants to rep it. Fingers crossed!
Still, I’d hate to leave you with nothing. This is a piece of my Master’s thesis (2001). Some day I hope to rework it. It’s the story of a 13-year-old boy named Akkad who was chosen as a kind of living god. His guardians are two Ninatat (a name you may recognize if you’ve been reading Sel & Am). In fact, you may also recognize the reference to Durandios.
When Ukiel and Akkad entered the sanctuary, they found Remiel pacing back and forth in front of Akkad’s ceremonial chair, muttering to himself. Upon seeing his high priest, Akkad couldn’t stop a crooked smile from crossing his lips; from the first day he’d seen Remiel when he was six years old, the man had not ceased to pace. It was as if the weight of the world rested on the priest’s shoulders.
Remiel looked up sharply when he realized he was no longer alone. “How many times do I have to tell you, Akkad?” he snapped. “At the zenith! We must begin when the sun is at its height! Who knows which god you’ve offended now.”
Akkad only shrugged, his smile fading. He moved to sit in the chair, but before he could settle himself, Remiel had him by the arm. “Your robes, Akkad. You cannot attend the people without the appropriate attire.”
“Surely Durandios would strike me down,” Akkad muttered as Ukiel and Maklad brought the cloak and jewels.
“Not funny,” Remiel said. “Not funny at all. Don’t forget the sandals,” he added to the attendants. He hovered for a moment more to make sure things were to his liking before motioning to the guards to open the chamber doors.
As the first of the populace began to enter with their eyes respectfully lowered, Akkad caught Remiel’s sleeve and hissed, “Just remember they’re your gods, Remiel. Your people.”
Remiel whirled, scowling. But he was not so stupid as to make a scene just then. He bent to speak in Akkad’s ear as if offering advice or a prayer. “Yes. But would you rather be dead?”