Chapter 2: The Temple

Last Edited – 4/10/19

Ariadna came to with a cry of shock, immediately cut off as she remembered what had happened. She was laying once again on marble, but not the floor of her home – instead, her naked body was half submerged in the waters of a fountain. With a start, she looked up at the figurehead of the fountain – a beautiful woman, carved of pure white stone as water flowed down from a pitcher held by her naked breasts. Ariadna barely recognized herself – she certainly didn’t feel like the perfect, beautiful woman the art portrayed any longer.

Her temple. This was her temple – she had seen it through the eyes of her mortal followers a million times, and that meant…

She swallowed painfully, her throat suddenly dry. That meant she was in the mortal world, where gods were forbidden from entering. Taelin had sent her here – exiled her here. Which meant she wasn’t a goddess any longer. She was mortal.

A tear slipped down her face even as she looked at her reflection in the water. She recognized herself, but she also did not. Her face was familiar to her, but it was a mortal beauty now – not the utter uncanny perfection of the divine. Her hair, while still pale was now a mortal blonde rather than the pure white. She felt strange – and very human.

She jumped as the walls shuddered, and she heard small cries from a hundred voices near her. Ariadna whipped her head around, noticing for the first time the dozens and dozens of men and women in the courtyard with her. A few of the women wore golden masks over their faces, hiding their identity – her priestesses. Being the bringers of luck had unfortunately inspired some hatred and danger from the unfortunate souls who didn’t know better than to realize her brother had brought their ruin upon them. They had long ago decided the wisest policy was if no one knew who the priestesses were – in public, her faithful wore the masks, frequently even among their own by habit. It wasn’t uncommon that no one but a priestesses family and closest friends would know what she looked like beneath the mask, and might meet her outside the temple with no idea she had just met one of her sisters.

For Ariadna, the disorienting part was that she couldn’t sense them – she had always been able to sense her followers anywhere, and mortals in general nearby. It was disorienting – she felt blind. She was naked still, but none of them were looking at her – instead, all their eyes were towards the nearby door as the very walls of the temple shook, sounds of fear on their muffled voices.

Ariadna remembered suddenly. The temple had been under attack by her brother’s church. She had slowed the attack with her power and by sending her Sirens down to aid them – but right now, she was no longer a goddess. Her sirens were servants of hers – Without her, they would have little choice but to move on to their afterlives, abandoning the fight, even as her own granted power would leave her priestesses. They were weakening again – and the attack would continue.

“Miss, are you alright?”

Ariadna turned to find a man looking at her, standing between her and a pretty woman and a young child, no more than seven or eight – his wife and child, perhaps. She took a reflexive step backward away from the man before she realized the fountain was directly behind her still, and nearly fell – she barely caught herself. The man rushed forward and held her arm, his huge hands calloused but surprisingly gentle. “Careful now…” he said softly. It’s alright. Here, here…” The man let go of her, quickly undoing his cloak and wrapping it around the slender woman. His eyes were haunted as he looked at her. “I’m so sorry…” he whispered, and she wasn’t sure what he was apologizing for – her fall? How would he know? No… more likely, he thought she had suffered the fate many of her followers had at the hands and members of Karn’s followers.

In a way, he was right.

The goddess stood there, holding the cloak closed around her naked form, and tried to calm herself. Her reaction to the man approaching her had been simple fear – perhaps understandable, she had to admit, but not something she would allow herself. She had been exiled, but by Taelin’s sweaty brow she was still a goddess in her own right, and these men and women were her followers. They had placed their trust and love in her – and she was not going to fear them. She was not going to let them have anything to fear either.

Ariadna took a deep breath, and when she let it out, she let out most of her fear with it, shoving it to the back of her mind – something she could deal with later. Right now, her temple was under attack – she had more pressing issues.

The walls shook again, and a few people screamed as dust trickled down through the air. Ariadna looked up again to realize that the girl was looking rapidly between her and the statue in the fountain, her mouth open in shock. Quickly, Ariadna turned away.

One of the men by the door growled. “The damned priests are using their magic again – no way they could batter down these walls without it. Why aren’t the priestesses countering them?”

A priestess, a beautiful blonde woman missing her mask, answered with her eyes wide and wild. “Isn’t it obvious?” she replied, half hysterical. “We’ve been abandoned. Ariadna has left us to die!”

Ariadna opened her mouth to respond, then slowly shut it again while the woman was shouted down by several other people while many others remained conspicuously silent. What could she say? The woman was right enough. She had been cast down from heaven, and no longer had the ability to reward her priestess’s faith with power. She had left them defenseless. True, she hadn’t chosen to do so, but the fact was that they were at risk of dying now because they had believed in her and she wasn’t able to help them…

No. Ariadna shook her head in quick negation. No, her ability to help them as their goddess was gone. But she was here – and she would be damned before she let them die while she drew breath.

“Thank you,” she whispered to the man before she darted to the wall, grabbing a sword leaning against it before running for one of the openings in the wall, heading deeper into the temple in search for a route to the outer walls. It was harder to find one than she thought it would be – she had seen this place many times through her followers eyes, but it felt somehow much larger and darker seen herself, like a strange maze. Eventually, she found herself on a buttress over a wall, staring down at the main courtyard – just in time for the temple’s inner gates to be blown from their hinges.

A single priest stood in the opening, his plate mail in the colors of her brother. A dozen arrows flew for him, but each bounced from a barrier several feet away from him, repelled by the protective magic surrounding him. In turn, he thrust both of his hands forward and a rippling wave of force spread from between his fingers, blowing back the group of soldiers in the courtyard, staggering them as they were pushed backward. Then a tide of black-clad soldiers stormed through the gates and into her followers like a living tide, killing as they went – but only the men. The woman, defeated and left behind by the attacking soldiers, swallowed whole by the flood of murderous followers of the God of Misfortune, were in for a worse fate.

As more and more soldiers rushed through the gate, Ariadna for a moment just stood there, trying to comprehend the horrible scene occurring before her eyes. While the various priestesses and young female acolytes were almost invisible, surrounded tightly by soldiers, the goddess could notice islands of men being created around each woman. Sometimes a woman’s cry was heard even through all the noise and cheering. If Ariadna had any doubts about the fate that awaited her loyal female followers, the soldiers’ shouts and lewd cheers would have dispelled her of any such notions.

“Damn, she’s a feisty one!”

“Tear that cloak! Faster!”

“Who goes first!”

“In Karn’s name… can’t wait until I fuck this whore!”

“This one is beautiful!”

“See her tits!”

“Scream bitch!”

“Pretty mouth… time to use it for sucking!”

Those and more lewd comments were shouted all around the girls. Sometimes, in a gap between men, Ariadna could see women being shoved, pulled, their cloaks being brutally torn apart by greedy hands of soldiers desperate to unveil their bodies as fast as they could. There weren’t many priestesses in the fight, but the soldiers seemed to delight in tearing off the masks of the few that were defeated, revealing their pretty faces to their lustful gaze. That was what pushed Ariadna over the edge. Remembering her own ordeal, she was disgusted with the idea that her flock, whose only “fault” was putting their faith and trust in her, would suffer the same fate.

Even though she knew she was never going to defeat so many, not as weak as she was now, she dashed forward to the nearest soldier. He was looking around, probably searching for some woman for his own. When he saw Ariadna, his eyes widened with pleasure and satisfaction, and a lusty grin appeared on his face. Too late did he notice her sword and his expression didn’t even have time to change when Ariadna’s blade cut into his neck. Ariadna had never been a bloodthirsty person though she felt as if she was on an easy, quick path to becoming one. Earlier she was ready to tear the Furies limb by limb, and now she felt satisfaction seeing the soldier’s body fall to the ground.

However, her element of surprise was gone. Two more soldiers rushed towards her, and those wouldn’t be so easily surprised. Even though she had but a fraction of her strength, she was still stronger and faster than a woman of her stature would be and the first soldier didn’t manage to block her hasty blow. The blade struck his armor, and though it didn’t bite into his flesh, the strength of the blow put him off balance, which Ariadna used to pierce his throat. The second soldier was much more ready, and her furious attacks were unable to go through his defenses. Probably she was faster than he was, but that wasn’t enough to overcome his superior training. As the blades clashed, she became aware of a circle of soldiers surrounding her.

“Who is that whore?” one soldier asked with a chuckle.

“Damn, she’s fast!” another one commented.

“And hot!”

“Yeah, just imagine how she must look under that cloak!”

“We’ll tear it off her soon enough!”

“Stop talking and restrain her!” the soldier blocking her blows cried to his comrades.

Ariadna knew that as concentrated as she was on one opponent, it would be easy for one of those trained killers to stab her from behind. As much as she hated it, she was aware that the only thing stopping them from doing that was the fact that they wanted her alive… to rape her. Briefly, she wondered if she could even BE killed, though at the moment she couldn’t afford to give it much thought. She saw a glimpse of a man with a club approaching her from behind and was fast enough to turn around and slash him across his hand, cutting off two of his fingers.

“Whore!” he cried, retreating.

“Let’s grab her together!” one soldier suggested, but before he could do anything, a calm voice spoke up.

“That won’t be necessary,” said the armored priest as he lifted his arm.

Ariadna felt a sudden flood of power grabbing her, siphoning the strength from her hands and legs, forcing her to fall to the ground, weak as a child. The power he was channeling was without a doubt coming from Karn – she could feel her brother’s influence in it. It was almost as if she was being attacked by him again, and briefly, before strong hands grabbed her wrists and ankles and tore her cloak off her, she wondered if Karn felt that too.

It was Subjugation – a crushing of her will to act beneath the power of a god as channeled by a priest. A mortal simply could not contend with the willpower of a god, and no matter how she hated it, Ariadna had to deal with the fact that she was mortal now, and no longer able to resist Karn’s direct will when it was forced onto her.

A moment later she was nude on the ground. The borrowed cloak was ripped from her lithe body while she was unable to move. The priest’s spell had stolen all of her strength, and she could barely lift her arms at all as the soldiers pawed at her vulnerable body. One of the soldiers pried her sword from her limp fingers, the metal crying out as it slid across the stone. She felt hands on her body everywhere, holding her wrists, her ankles, her shoulders, and her neck, playing at the backs of her knees, in between her thighs – and especially over the soft, unprotected flesh of her sweet breasts.

“There,” the priest said, his calm voice somehow condescending. “I assume you can take her now? Don’t need any further help?” He sighed as he strode off, following the onrushing wave of soldiers deeper into the temple. “Unbelievable weaklings,” he muttered as he went, Ariadna’s strong hearing just barely picking up the priest’s voice. “Unable to restrain a simple woman. What would the lord think?”

All around her, women were being raped now. The vast majority of the men were lying dead on the ground, their blood spilling down between the cobblestones as the women were stripped, soldiers of Karn forcing themselves between their legs – a dozen women torn down, stripped, and crying out in pain as they were fucked against their will. Somewhere in the back of her mind, Ariadna was confused. This wasn’t the way war between the churches was done!

Her church had, in the past, been through more than one conflict against Karn’s followers. Their wars were brief, but brutal, with plenty dead – but not like this. She had felt the pain of her followers before as they were raped – but hardly commonly. Now it seemed that every woman they could capture was going to victimized – Certainly, the furies were known monsters and would find any means possible to make their victims miserable, from torture to rape to murder, but the rest of Karn’s followers were hardly that evil. She just didn’t understand what had changed…

Then, a moment later, any ability to be concerned about it vanished as she felt a man slipping between her thighs, his armored legs forcing hers apart. She couldn’t even see him through the press of soldiers on her, playing with her, but she certainly felt it as his cock pressed against her tight sex – then inside her, skewering her.

“AAaaagh!” she yelled, trying to push the soldiers off of her – but she could barely even lift her arms, much less fight. She tried to curse him, tried to shout at him, but her lips weren’t working right – she couldn’t let out anything but wordless sounds of pain, rage, and humiliation. Then a soldier took advantage of her open lips to feed a cock into her mouth, a humiliation that not even the furies or Karn had managed to inflict on her. She longed to bite him, longed to make him suffer for the insult, but her mouth wouldn’t work right – she was helpless as the soldier’s dirty cock pressed into the back of her mouth, choking her.

“This slut is so tight,” one of the soldiers growled, presumably the one raping her even though she couldn’t see him. “I think the bitch might be a virgin – tightest cunt I’ve ever fucked.”

“Considering your dedication to paying the whores Kev I don’t doubt it,” another laughed.

“She’s not bleeding,” another voice said. “Just a tight pussy. I guess this soldier bitch hasn’t ever been fucked by a proper man before.”

“Well I’m stretching her out good,” Kev answered, grunting as he slammed his cock into her. “She’ll know she’s been fucked properly when I’m done.”

“I guess it’s good for the rest of us the smallest man got to go first then, right?” Another said, laughing.

“Shut up!” Kev cursed, doubling his efforts to fuck her even harder, increasing the pain she felt in her dry cunt a hundredfold, making her cry out around the cock in her mouth as it worked its way deeper, starting to slip down her tight throat. “I’ll show you how to fuck a bitch properly.”

For a moment there Ariadna thought that she had sunk the lowest that she could. Ever since she lost the majority of her divine power degradation after degradation was piled on her. First, she was raped – repeatedly – by her brother, who used her body to sate his lusts in the cruelest way he could. Then he gave her to his vicious servants, who were, if possible, even rougher with her, relishing in her pain even more than in the pleasure offered by her unwilling body. But now… now she was taken by these humans, fucked by them as if she was a cheap whore.

Her brother and the furies were at least aware that they were raping a goddess and that made them proud. Those soldiers didn’t even notice that she was anything other than just another set of fuckholes to rape. If they saw anything out of the ordinary in her, it was only that she was far more beautiful than any women any of those soldiers had in his life, and that only made them fuck her even more viciously and brutally. It was as if her divine beauty, instead of touching something good in their hearts, appealed to the worst parts of their souls, filling them with a need to claim, despoil and corrupt this beauty.

The man inside her pussy, Kev, was fucking her so roughly that his hips became a blur as his cock kept pistoning in her tight snatch. He removed only as much armor as to allow him to release his cock and the hard, cold metal covering his legs bit into Ariadna’s thighs as in fucking frenzy he kept pushing her legs wider apart, allowing himself better access to her unprotected and unwilling pussy. His buddies helped him with them, grabbing the goddess’ legs by her ankles and pulling them, so that her thighs formed almost a straight line, allowing Kev to penetrate her deeper and hard. Each of his rapid, powerful pushes hurt the tender insides of her pussy. She believed she could still heal better than an ordinary human being, but it didn’t diminish the pain her already thoroughly raped pussy felt each time he rammed the entirety of his thick shaft in her folds.

The man fucking her face preferred longer, slower strokes, often reaching with his cock to the back of her throat, making her unprepared and inexperienced throat gag around the invading meat.

“Mmmmpfff!” she whimpered despite herself. It was the only sound she could make – the cock in her mouth muffled any other sounds. She hated the sensation of the smelly, disgusting cock in her mouth but she hated the degradation of it even more. Meanwhile, for the man, it was heaven – even if he was completely unaware of the irony. Her tight throat constricting around his cock was massaging his dick while her tongue inadvertently caressed the bottom of his cock. Already pre-cum was dripping into Ariadna’s mouth, the taste almost making her retch. When the man pushed further, he managed to block her airway entirely. The once proud goddess, reflexively began thrashing her body, fighting to breathe, her struggles arousing her two rapists even further.

She didn’t know if she could die and wasn’t eager to find out – but such a death, being raped by two thuggish soldiers – was probably the worst fate she could envision for herself. Fortunately, the man withdrew his cock a bit, leaving only the bulbous, veiny head in, allowing Ariadna to breathe a single breath before pushing it back in again.

The pain from the double-rape almost made her not notice the actions of other men… almost. She could still feel them squeezing and pinching her body, mostly her large, perfectly formed breasts. With her face buried in the smelly pubic hair of the soldier orally abusing her, she couldn’t see who was pinching and squeezing and kneading her tits, pulling and twisting her nipples and smacking the perfect globes of her breasts, but did it matter? All those men were the same.

As a goddess, Ariadna always thought herself high above human beings, but contrary to other gods she was fond of them, believing that the majority of them were decent. Now she was brutally disillusioned from both notions. How could she think herself to be better than any of them, while she was brutally speared from two ends by two of them? And it seems that the only thing those men wanted in their cruel hearts was to sink their cocks into some unwilling hole.

Ariadna wanted to kill them, to beg, to run – to do anything she could so that they would stop raping her. It made her feel less like herself every single passing second, more like an animal than a woman – not even just a human, but like livestock. She would be willing to sacrifice every value she had held for thousands of years if only she could make it stop – but she couldn’t. The priest’s magic had swallowed her will, leaving her as an immobile shell. It was surprisingly hard to remember what she wanted her body to do from second to second, much less to make herself actually do it – She was helpless to prevent herself from being violated by the soldiers of her brother.

Then the soldier inside her pussy, Kev, began to grunt heavily, sounding like a pig as he drove himself into her hard, his cock stiffening inside of her as she desperately tried to push him out of her – to absolutely no effect as he came in her pussy, his swollen dick spitting wads of disgusting white slime inside of her. Ariadna wanted to cry with humiliation, frustration, and disgust. A human. A mortal man was breeding her.

“My turn – you got to give her a go at learning how a man fucks. Now I’ll leave her with no doubt.” A larger man was pushing Kev to the side, his cock slipping free of her raped hole as he half crawled and half fell to the side, making room for the other soldier to climb between her legs, his hard cock already out and resting against her sore snatch. He rubbed it up and down her pussy while she gagged on the dick in her mouth, eyes shut in painful anticipation of what was coming for the bare seconds before he shoved into her, her tight slit spreading painfully around his thick cock as it plowed deeply into her. Once again she was being rocked between the two men, her limp body buffeted like clothing hanging from a line in the wind, controlled entirely by the whims of these monstrous men.

The man with his cock in her mouth stiffened and came without warning, dragging his shaft over her soft, immobile tongue as he pumped seed into her mouth. The vile taste of it hit her first, coming as a complete surprise and making her want to gag as the soldier shot wave after wave into her mouth. With her body stunned and held limp, she couldn’t willingly choose to swallow it if she wanted to, but nor could she spit. Her body reflexively swallowed anything that was in danger of choking her, and the feeling of the hot cum traveling down her throat was one of the most wretched, vile feelings she could imagine. What she didn’t swallow pooled in her mouth, coating her tongue with cum and making sure she could taste it for the entirety of her horrible rape.

He pulled out, laughing as he watched the larger man ream out the beautiful girl’s pussy. “She had another hole over here guys – don’t forget. Give the slut a taste of your cocks.”

“Don’t mind if I do,” another soldier said with a smile, walked over to in front of her where her mouth hung open, Ariadna unable to close it no matter how hard the goddess tried. He pulled down his pants completely, exposing his large, unwashed cock and letting the scent of his sweat wash over her. “Why don’t you open your mouth for me?” He mocked her, fully aware of how her jaw dangled. A chuckle escaped the man. “I said open that mouth bitch! Can’t you do anything?” The soldier snickered as he slapped the beautiful girl across her face viciously.

A small grunt of pain was the only sound Arianda could make as her head shifted like that of a girl’s doll, flopping to the side with her neck unable to hold her head up. The cruel soldier grabbed her hair, using it like puppet strings to hold her up and so making her jaw open even wider from the angle. “That’s more like it. Selfish bitch – can’t even take a man’s cock properly.” Ariadna hated herself and the man equally as he brutally plunged his dick into the goddess’s mouth and toward her throat. He gripped her silky hair with both hands now, using them as handles to hold her as he used his powerful hips to slam his length in and out of her mouth viciously. Ariadna could no longer see anything but her rapist’s crotch of dark pubic hair in front of her eyes and the curve of his armored breastplate, but she could certainly feel and hear the man grinding his enormous cock into her tight cunt, and hear the others soldier encouraging her rapists to fuck her even harder.

It was impossible to tell how long the two men skewered her between them – it seemed to Ariadna as though it lasted forever. “By Karn’s blessed harem, fuck this bitch is tight. Holy fuck I’m going to cum like a waterfall into this bitch – take it you heathen slut!” The soldier rapist behind her yelled in triumph and pleasure, burying every inch of his huge shaft inside the fallen goddess’s divine pussy.

Ariadna did not even notice her cunt getting filled with a second load – She was much too busy trying not to choke to death on the cock that was now violently fucking her face. Where the previous man had been content to use her limp lips and tongue to massage his shaft, the man was taking advantage of her reflexive swallowing to shove his massive dick deep into her throat instead. Ariadna, who had never been mortal and had to deal with actually needing air to live, was suddenly, horrifically terrified for her existence as that precious air was cut off for her. The monstrous soldier in front of her was merciless, slamming his penis back and forth into her face nonstop. It was the most horrific forced blowjob that Ariadna could imagine, and with her body weak and helpless, her arms limp and her head held, she was completely powerless to do anything to stop him.

Even with her dulled senses, she could hear him begin to breathe faster and faster as his climax was approaching. Holding his head in his huge hands, he began increasing the pace of his pushes so much that his hips became a blur as he was pounding her mouth as it was her snatch. He became more and more violent, completely losing himself in the divine sensation of facefucking this exquisite girl.

Finally, it was looking down at her that pushed him over the edge. He looked down and saw her beautiful face with eyes filled with tears of helplessness, her mouth enveloping his cock, taking it as he was pounding into her. He came at that moment. Moaning load in pleasure, in a wild, animal-like moan, he pushed his cock completely in, burying her face in his crotch, in his smelly pubic hair as his dick pushed to the back of her throat. Even weakened as she was, he could feel her body tense as she tried to muster all her strength to resist and fight for air. Then his cock began shooting wave after wave of jism, the sticky liquid flowing disgustingly slow down to her stomach. After three or four spurts he pulled backward, leaving only half of his cock in.

“Here, whore!” he yelled, “Drink up my juice!”

Ariadna moaned inwardly with despair as his cum began shooting a seemingly endless torrent, covering her tongue and immediately filling her mouth with disgusting, revolting taste. Finally, he withdrew, the last two loads landing on her perfect features and in her fair hair.

“You bastard! You had to make her sloppy seconds!” one of the soldiers complained.

“You don’t want to fuck her, you don’t have to,” the grunt commented, hiding his dick.

“Damn right I’m fucking her,” the soldier replied, “But let’s hasten it up a bit!”

“Yeah, there are more of us waiting!” another voice was heard among the group surrounding her.

“Well, fortunately, she has one more hole to use!”

“Yeah, let’s triple-team the bitch!”

“Or let four of us use her!”

“I want to fuck her tiny ass raw!”

“I’m taking her cunt!”

“She’ll be gobbling on my sperm.”

Those and even more lewd comments surrounded Ariadna, along with the agonized screams of other women and more laughter from the soldiers having their fun with the unwilling bodies of the priestesses and the supplicants who had sought refuge here.

More strong hands grabbed Ariadna and lifted her body. She couldn’t even defend herself and kick at the attackers as they carried her in the air as if she was a ragdoll. More than one took his sweet time to grab and squeeze her breasts or ass, pinch her nipples or slap her ass.

From her position, Ariadna could see a man sit on the ground with his cock pointing up obscenely as if some pole. “Nnnn…” mustering all her power she managed only to give out this small moan.

She couldn’t stop herself as her body was lowered on the cock below with her ass touching the cock. “Nnn…” she gave another small moan while her entire being wanted to scream her lungs out in pain as the cock, slowly, painfully filled her tightest hole.

It wasn’t the first time she was assraped, her previous experience in the heavens still fresh in her memory, but her previous experience offered her no solace – nothing could have prepared her for this The man leaned backward, lying down on the ground, her lithe body on his. Immediately afterward, one soldier positioned herself between her legs and pushing her knees to the sides he lined up his cock with her pussy. With a powerful thrust, he rammed the entirety of his dick inside her.

As pain exploded in her already thoroughly raped hole, another soldier straddled over her, putting his cock between her perfectly formed breasts, grabbing them and squeezing together.

“Nnnn!” Ariadna moaned through her open mouth as her head was grabbed again, turned to the side and soon another cock pushed past her lips.

Time seemed to fade into the background as she was raped over and over, numbed by magic and completely powerless to stop filthy beasts that were abusing her. Despite the huge cock lodged in her mouth, Ariadna’s humiliated screams could be heard by all the men, joining those of the other women in the courtyard man after men surrounded the beautiful woman, ramming their cocks into her cunt and asshole.

When the Karnite soldier fucking her face finally reached his climax and started spewing his cum into Ariadna’s mouth, her only response could be a dismal choking noise and a tiny sob as she felt the hot slime gushing into the back of her throat. When he was done the man yanked his dick out of Ariadna’s mouth and gave her an appreciative smack in the face before leaving, another soldier quick to take his place as the massive soldiers below and behind her continued to pound her other holes.

Ariadna couldn’t move, couldn’t resist as the cum already dripping from her face and lips, but still the soldier felt the need to smack her face, slapping her so hard that the ring echoed inside the courtyard, making her slack jaw drop despite her efforts. Ariadna could do nothing but cry out as her lips spread wide for the brutish soldiers, immediately gagging as he drove his cock deep into her little throat. Once again, however, she couldn’t do anything to help herself – couldn’t protect her cunt, her asshole, or even her throat from the humans. The cruel man fucked Ariadna’s mouth for several agonizing minutes and pulled out just three times during that span to give the fallen goddess a few seconds to breathe. By the time he blew his load inside her mouth, Ariadna was desperate for air, her pale face almost crimson.

Meanwhile, the man behind her had already cum inside her asshole and had already been replaced by another soldier, eager for a piece of the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. The new rapist was fucking Ariadna’s ass so hard that her entire body shook, driving her down harder onto the cock impaling her sore cunt each time he slammed his length into her torn opening. Ariadna’s long legs buckled violently each time he slammed his cock into the torn opening, slapping her ass with each stroke even as a new rapist soon had his cock buried deep inside her mouth.

It was the most appalling, horrendous violation that the goddess could have ever imagined, and it continued for what felt like an eternity – more than an hour of rape and brutality. During that time, more than thirty men raped her – happily fucking her mouth, ass, or pussy until torrents of cum were flowing freely from her red, swollen openings – her asshole and cunt were badly torn and gaping horrifically. Her listless jaw, likewise, was terribly sore from the constant facial abuse.

Then after just one man of many finishing raping her mouth, her jaw twitched.

Ariadna’s eyes widened, then narrowed – her impressive will building to a spear point as she thrust it forward, shattering the binding spell the priest had placed on her more than an hour ago. It should have held her helpless for hours still – but she was no mere woman.

As this scum was about to learn.

Rage. Absolute, burning rage, consuming her. Ariadna burned, her fury at the disgusting humans surrounding her reaching a fevered crescendo, and when her eyes widened, they glowed white. With her fury, she felt a connection to her divine heritage once again. She called for that magic, and it answered her with fire.

“What the…” a soldier stammered stupidly – the last words he uttered.

“Die…” Ariadna hissed, her words blowing strands of cum from her lips – and the soldier began to burn from within, his screams louder than any of the women in the courtyard. “Die, die, die, DIE!”

“Someone kill the whore!” one of the soldiers shouted as his comrade fell to his knees and then to the ground, already dead before he hit the cobbles.

The soldiers were taken completely by surprise and scrambled to comprehend the scene before them. In one second they well ravishing this woman’s helpless body with wild abandon, some of them plunging their cocks in her unwilling body while others were waiting for their turn… and now she was free, and their friend was dead. Some of them drew their swords but at this moment they were no longer fighting a weak priestess, but a goddess in all her divine fury – and their reactions were already far too late.

“DIE!” she screamed, her voice full of her power as she felt it blossom within her.

And the soldiers began to scream. Shrieking in burning agony, they dropped their weapons and fell to the ground as their eyes smoked and their skin glowed, fire blossoming to life inside their flesh, beneath their skin. Instinctively thrashing around, they tried to kill the fire consuming them, but there were no flames, no blaze that could be snuffed.

And soon, the entire courtyard was silent.

Ariadna didn’t stop to look around, even to admire the destruction she brought on those cruel men, so deserving of their fate. She had one goal in pain – to punish this priest. Not only did his spell allow those beasts in human skin to use her but he was a symbol of everything her brother did to her, of everything that had been done to her followers – and for that, he had to pay — the first of many she would send to meet her brother.

After his power violated her, she could clearly feel its source, even now. He couldn’t hide from her in any way. Not that he would try – relishing in his power, he thought himself safe. She was going to prove him wrong.

He was in one of the buildings of the temple complex. Ariadna’s bare feet slapped against the cobbles as he strode through the ruined temple, walking directly towards him. The building previously served as a preparation house where priestesses cleansed themselves in a ritual pool before performing their ceremonies, but now, the screams coming from it told of the darker purpose it served. Probably it should have been guarded, but whatever sentries were posted, they decided to join the orgy inside.

It didn’t matter. They wouldn’t have stopped a goddess.

As she entered the room, she paused for a second. Even in her fury, even after witnessing and experiencing first hand the atrocities this war with her brother took, she was stunned by the image she saw. With most priestesses and acolytes assaulted in the courtyard and other buildings, there weren’t many women here, but that only meant that the few acolytes who had tried to hide here were fucked all the more roughly by an overwhelming number of soldiers.

She could see a petite, raven-haired beauty being viciously ass-raped as another soldier silenced her screams with his cock – something Ariadna remembered all too well. Another two girls – a blonde and a redhead – were still clothed, but their robes were torn only to expose their pussies, and they were brutally fucked from behind while holding hands. A group of men almost completely covered another dark-haired girl, her lithe body being fucked simultaneously in her ass, pussy, and mouth while she was also titty-fucked and forced to jerk cocks off.

And in the middle of it all, on a stone bank, sat the priest, with his cock being vigorously sucked by a crying girl while to other soldiers were whipping her ass with their belts.

“Those whores are really well trained,” a soldier said, noticing Ariadna. “They even come to us without us needing to do a thing.”

“Good,” answered another. “We are already running short on cunts.”

Ariadna didn’t pay attention to them, staring only at the priest and to her satisfaction she saw a flicker of uncertainty on his face.

“You should still be unable to move…” he muttered, pushing the girl sucking him away as he stood up.

And Ariadna unleashed her power.

Soldier after soldier began screaming and dying, but Ariadna was focused only on the priest, who stood in the middle of the torrent of her power unmoved. He raised his hands trying to channel her brother’s power against her, but Ariadna only intensified her efforts, and to her grim satisfaction he began to scream and move away as the pain began to fill every cell of his body.

“Die… and tell my brother… that there are more of you coming!” she yelled, and the sudden flare of her rage filled the room.

Seconds later she looked at the priests burnt body with unnatural calm before looking around the room. She frowned seeing three initiates crawling in the corner, looking at her with terror.

“Don’t be afraid. You are safe…” she said but immediately stopped and looked around the room again.”No…” she whispered, noticing for the first time female bodies among the burned soldiers… killed by her power as surely as their rapists had been.

Ariadna recalled the courtyard, the unnatural silence that fell after she killed the soldier. She hadn’t been the only woman being raped in that courtyard… but she couldn’t recall hearing a thing from when as she had left.

Fearing what she would see, she raced out of the door, back towards the courtyard, her heart pounding as she retraced her steps. Ariadna’s eyes, now cleared of her rage, noticed for the first time the fallen bodies strewn across the floor – armored men and nude women. The courtyard was choked with both, and the reek of burned flesh filled her nose with its acrid scent. Ariadna collapsed to her knees among the bodies of her faithful, her head slowly shaking in disbelief.

Ariadna felt sick, her stomach churning, and she had a moment to think of how strange and novel the human reaction was before she was vomiting, dry heaving her empty stomach as she fell to all fours on the cobblestone over the burned bodies of her followers. Even as she was disgusted and filled with despair, however, her rage did not subside. A part of her considered the deaths of her priestesses and followers as acceptable collateral damage – she wanted to continue to burn everything until there wasn’t a single filthy follower of her brother left in the temple, left in the entire world.

They were dead. These women had relied on her for guidance and protection, had served her, worshipped her, loved her – and she now they were dead, murdered by the hand of their goddess. By the one that had believed in, had thought would protect them. How could she want this? How could she have done this? How could she want to continue doing it? Ariadna dry heaved again as she tried to rise, collapsing once again to hands and knees.

It was so obvious, too late – so obvious, Ariadna felt like a fool for not understanding it from the moment she woke. She wasn’t the Goddess of Fortune anymore.

Divinity was a wonderful thing, and it had come with a great variety of gifts – like immortality, magic, and a permanent, two-way connection to those who worshipped her, allowing her to bequeath power to them and influence their nature to be closer to her – but it came with a curse, as well. Stasis.

In heaven, she was not merely her own person, her own personality. Ariadna was also an idea, an archetype. She couldn’t escape the mold she was fashioned in. As a goddess, Ariadna could no more choose to murder an innocent than a fish could walk on land – it simply wasn’t who she was, and that would never change.

Or that was how it had worked before the tablets of fate were stolen. When her brother arranged that, the rules were thrown out with it. That was how Karn had stolen her power, she was sure of it – the stasis had been broken, allowing him to use some spell or ritual to siphon away her energy. She wasn’t the only one who had changed, though – her brother’s followers had warred with hers before, but there had never been anything like the mass rape and pillaging that was happening now. Her brother’s rape of her had changed a piece of who he was as well – and now his divinity was reflecting that change back on his followers, making them again more like him. Her brother wouldn’t ever be satisfied, wouldn’t ever choose to play fairly when he could cheat, and wouldn’t be able to resist pouncing on weakness. With Taeilin having crafted a new set of tablets, that which her brother was had returned to stasis, unable to change further – he was as he had been, but also a rapist and predator, and now the god of all luck, good and bad. He couldn’t change himself now any more than she would have been able to in her centuries of life before now.

But now Ariadna was human. She wasn’t a goddess anymore – which meant she had true free will for the first time in her existence. She could change, could want whatever she wanted, could do what she wanted – right or wrong. It was the blessing of humanity – and its curse.

Ariadna felt overwhelmed with existential terror. The ability to change included the ability to change for the worse. Somewhere up there, her mantle of divinity still awaited her – and she just knew that if she could show Taelin the truth of what had happened, he would welcome her back. But what if she returned – and she had changed too much to be the goddess she had been? What if the mantle wouldn’t take her? What if she made the wrong decisions? She had only had free will for less than an hour, and she had already murdered innocents, her followers – and more damning, there was a part of her that could see them as acceptable losses to slaughter her brother’s followers. It was a small voice, but it was there. In her rage, she had been indiscriminate – and while it was likely she could be more careful in the future, it didn’t change the fact that in a moment of fury, she had thought it right to lash out and hurt anyone in her way.

Ariadna was walking now, stumbling awkwardly through empty streets. Everywhere she looked there were more bodies – her followers, her brother’s followers – all dead. Hundreds of them – her fury had radiated out from her like the ripples from a tossed stone into a pond, consuming anything it touched until Ariadna began to fear she would find nothing but corpses filling her temple. Then she heard the moan.

Rushing toward the sound, she found a man on the ground, lax fingers softly clawing at the ground as he tried to rise. Even at a glance, Ariadna knew he wasn’t going to live – he had been burned badly. Not bad enough to kill him outright as the others closer to her had been, but more than bad enough to claim his life. If he had been ten feet further, he might have lived. Instead, he probably had just a minute or two to live.

At first, Ariadna assumed he was one of her brother’s followers, but he wasn’t wearing armor or the garb of one of the soldiers. Then she recognized him through the burns on his face. He was the man who had spoken to her upon arrival – who had given her the cloak from his own back. She had killed him for his kindness.

Ariadna could barely see him through the tears was were filling her eyes. “I’m sorry…” she whispered, but doubted the man could still hear her – he was probably too far gone. Only great willpower was keeping him alive at all – and in a burst of intuition, Ariadna felt sure she knew what the cause was. He had a wife, and a daughter – in the temple, somewhere. Right in front of her, the kind man groaned his last, sagged, and let out a final, ragged breath through his burned throat, and Ariadna realized she never learned his name. Somberly, she slid her hand across his eyes, closing his burned eyelids to give him at least some dignity in death.

He clutched a sword in his burned hand. Gingerly, respectfully, Ariadna unclasped his fingers and took the sword. It was a small piece of repentance, but the fallen goddess promised herself she was going to get this man’s wife and daughter away from here, no matter what.

Turning her head, she scanned the features of her temple. It wasn’t how she was used to seeing it – it all looked so different from the heavens, and it wasn’t ruined and charred in her memories, but at last, she located the building where she had arrived, where the women had been holed up. Clutching a dead man’s sword in white knuckles, she set out for it just short of a run. Ariadna didn’t even know what she was going to do if she ran into soldiers. An enormous part of her wanted to slaughter them like the animals they were, but she wasn’t sure whether or not to trust that part of herself. Once, just a few days ago, the idea of killing would have been abhorrent to her. Now she was eager, and that made her uncomfortable, no matter how much they might deserve it.

The entire thing made her confused and worried – she hoped she wouldn’t run into another soldier, because she rather hoped she wouldn’t have to decide until she had time to consider her thoughts more closely.

Her luck, however, didn’t hold. The moment the building came into sight, she saw the heavy doors had been battered down – and from the screams inside, it was recent. Her eyes went wide, then narrowed, gripping her sword tighter. Ariadna felt magic rise within her and had to close her eyes, forcing the rage down and the magic to subside with it. Then she opened her eyes, swallowed hard, and headed through the shattered door.

The room with the fountain had fallen, and the sounds of fighting were coming from the next room back – one of the chapels. Ariadna ran past to reach it, her eyes scanning the fight. The defenders hadn’t fallen yet – most of the screams were from the women clustered in the back of the door, hiding by the edge of the chapel, while the five remaining temple soldiers defended them. The group was surrounded by a dozen black-clad soldiers of Karn’s temple – no one saw her coming.

Nothing in creation could be easier than killing them. Ariadna felt her heart – her human heart – began to beat faster at the very thought. That worried her. Yes, she could simply jump between them, unleash her power and burn, burn, burn them all… soldiers together with her own people, came the cold realization. She could also have simply lunged at them with her sword. Her lack of training would be a problem, but she had the advantage of strength, speed, and surprise. But that would be one more step on the road to becoming someone else, someone darker.

Someone more like her brother.

Still, she had to try to do something. Silently she approached the first soldier and plunged the blade into his leg. As he yelled and fell to the ground, she backhanded him hard enough to make him fall unconscious. Before the soldiers noticed her, she approached another man. He turned towards her only for her to grab his wrist and twist so hard that the bones cracked and he, screaming in agony fell to the ground. Another man jumped at her. Clumsily, but with a speed that no human fencing master could achieve she parried his blows, holding him off. After his second attack, however, the soldier fell dead – stabbed in the back by one of her followers.

And so it went. One by one Ariadna singled out the soldiers and rendered them unable to fight, to the best of her skills trying not to kill them. Sometimes she hit them, sometimes she twisted their hands or broke their bones. As the black-clad warriors frantically tried to face this new threat, her followers attacked them with redoubled effort and soon the fight was over – but the killing was not. Her followers quickly dispatched the soldiers incapacitated by her.

She watched, her emotions mixed between satisfaction and horror. She was confused as to how to feel – but she didn’t say a word to stop them. She wanted them dead. She was aware that her followers had the right to want them dead – after seeing and experiencing what Karn’s soldiers did with Ari’s followers, she couldn’t blame her people. But did the fact that the blood wasn’t on her hands made her somehow less guilty of those deaths? She did incapacitate them, making them easy targets. Sure, she didn’t intend to kill them, but she did nothing to stop it as well. Was it another step towards this invisible border after crossing which she would become like her brother?

As a goddess, she never had to dwell on such matters of morality. She always felt sure of everything she did. Now it was different. However, she didn’t have time to dwell on those dilemmas. Turning to her followers, she said, “We must leave, quickly!”

They didn’t need further encouragement. As they passed her, Ariadna noticed the red hair of the daughter and wife of the kind man, the kind man she killed, walking in the group. She felt relief washing over her – at least she could keep her promise. That feeling, however, was short-lived.

“Daaaddddyyyyyy!” the young girl screamed rushing towards the body that mere minutes ago was her father.

“Bastards… bastards… what did they do to him,” his wife said with a trembling voice – but she didn’t cry. “Look at what they did, and hate them for that. You have to be strong, Leila,” she said to the young girl.

Ariadna wanted to tell her the truth about the man’s fate, even if it would mean they would hate her. The man deserved that. She was about to do it when she sensed something. A threat, coming from the direction of the gates. It wasn’t Karn himself, obviously, nor one of his Furies – but it was the next best thing her brother had. Jaras, Karn’s Archpriest, had arrived personally.

Just like Ariadna and Karn had been like day and night, so was her High Priestess different from his chief servant. The leader of Ariadna’s church was a soft-spoken woman, prepared from birth for her role – raised to be kind, wise, and helpful. Jaras wasn’t born into the clergy at all. Once he had been a pit fighter, who had used bloody rituals alongside prayers to Karn to bring misfortune on his opponents. Later – some said after arranging a misfortune to fall on the previous Archpriest – he took his position.

Ariadna didn’t want to meet him in battle.

“We cannot go through the gate. There is another group of soldiers coming,” she said, certain that Jaras wouldn’t be coming alone. “Is there a secret way out of here?”

Silence reigned for a moment before one of the priestesses spoke up. “Yes! The catacombs! They open up to the old temple too!” She excitedly exclaimed.

“Lead the way,” Ariadna said… but one look at the child with them, at the wounded slowing them down, told her they wouldn’t be able to escape – unless she did something.

They only had minutes until they were found – Ariadna urged them onward, down the staircase that would lead down into the funerary palace, and then down further into the catacombs where the faithful had been laid to rest for centuries. “Go, go, go,” she said, giving small pushes to their backs as they passed through the door. “Get to the old temple, and keep going!”

“What about you?” the child asked.

There was something in the child’s eyes that made Ariadna sick to her stomach. In her eyes, the goddess saw the face of the father she had murdered. She swallowed uncomfortably. “I am going to find a way to collapse the entrance, then I will follow you. You have to go.” From the look on the girl’s face, she didn’t believe her – but her mother put her hands on her shoulders and pushed her onward.

As the last person disappeared down the stairs, Ariadna gave a grim smile. In truth, she might be able to collapse the catacombs – but even if she could, and even if she trusted herself not to bring the whole thing down and crush her followers to death – which she wasn’t sure she did – it wouldn’t do them any good. It wouldn’t take the priests of Karn long to realize what had she had done, and from there to figure out where the catacombs led out. The overland route to the old temple was shorter than the way through the catacombs, not even considering the possibility of horses to speed their way – they would be caught. No, their only chance would be if the priests were given no reason to look for them.

It was the only thing she could do for her followers now, her repentance for all the men and women who trusted her she had murdered or allowed to die.

Ariadna had already been raped, and that was perhaps the best disguise she could ask for. She stripped off the cloak she had wrapped around herself to hide her nudity, exposing her bruised body – incredibly aware of the filthy cum leaking from her holes down her thighs, but not daring to wipe it away for risk of ruining the lie she was creating. Ariadna took the mask from a slain priestess on the ground, putting the golden mask over her face as she reached down for a pair of shackles one of the enemy soldiers carried, moving herself against one of the walls as she closed the shackles around her arms and legs, tilting her head down in defeat.

That was how the soldiers found her five minutes later, a perfect picture of just one more gang-raped priestess of Ariadna. The picture was clear – Karn’s soldiers had already plundered this area. There was nothing left to find here, no one left to capture – please be distracted by the pretty piece of ass and don’t look…

It worked. The soldiers laughed, leaning down to fondle her tits briefly before yanking her roughly to her feet, carrying her out into the courtyard where she had first woken. The marble statue of herself, the Goddess of the temple, was the first thing that had caught her eye – it had been despoiled by one of the soldiers or priests. They had stabbed a sword up through the crotch, impaling the cleft between her perfect legs like a crude, ruining cock. Ariadna couldn’t disagree with the feeling.

Jaras, Archpriest of Karn

Then she caught sight of Jaras, and all thoughts of the statue fled. The high priest stood in a black suit of plate mail, and an enormous warhammer was strapped across his back. That hammer must have weighed a ton, but from the bulging strength in his arms, she had no doubt he could move it through the air like it were little but a feather even without strength granted by his connection with Karn. That weapon would all but obliterate anyone it hit, regardless of armor. He had heavy scars on the left side of his face, and he had covered most of them up with a spiraling black tattoo that made him look even darker and more savage.

He gazed at Ariadna with a soul-piercing glare filled with malice and lust but thankfully didn’t linger over her too long before he gazed at the other priestesses and soldiers his men brought before him. There weren’t that many left.

This temple had once been home to nearly a hundred priestesses. Ariadna had helped two of them escape through the catacombs, and between the battle and Ariadna’s inferno, it seemed more than half of what was left had been killed. There were only twenty priestesses here, their masks either around their necks or still on their faces. There were about twice as many soldiers or non-combatants here – Almost entirely women. Clearly, most of the men the priesthood had defeated had been summarily slaughtered.

Jaras looked up and down the group with narrowed eyes. “I have only one question,” he growled, his voice a hate-filled rumble. At his words, the few priestesses still wearing masks on their face, including Ariadna, had them torn off to expose their faces. “Who is the high priestess?”

“She’s dead,” a red-haired priestess said, her eyes narrowed.

Jaras nodded, and one of the soldiers slammed a fist into the woman’s stomach, forcing her to double over. “Lies will be punished. She is not dead – who else could have burned all my men? No, one of you is Ariadna’s high priestess – and I will know which one. The woman who tells me who she is can go free.”

Nervous energy seemed to fill the room as the women looked at one another. No one trusted his word – but it seemed a few were considering if maybe it was worth hoping anyway. Ariadna couldn’t rightfully blame them – a chance of escape from the hell of rape and abuse Karn’s priests promised would look worth taking, no matter how slim the chance.

Then her followers surprised her as one of them laughed, haughty and defiant. “No one knows, you fool,” she mocked. The masks, Ariadna realized – not even her own followers knew the identity of their Archpriestess. “You’ll never find her, and none of us will help you.”

Jaras glared at the woman for a second, his gaze threatening death, before he shrugged. “We’ll see. I’ll find you, whore priestess – you’ll see.” He looked around the room, focusing on the women other than the priestesses. “The church of Ariadna is no more – Karn is now the god of all luck. Any of you who swear your worship to Karn and serve him faithfully will be set free. We have need of loyal worshippers.” He turned his gaze to his men. “Load the priestesses into the wagons. We will take them back to the citadel, and we will discover which of these sluts is Ariadna’s chosen. Any of these wretches who refuse to serve the Master of Fate and Fortune are to be left here.”

A soldier saluted him. “And the temple sir?”

Jaras turned and strode from the room as the Ariadna was dragged out. “Burn it down with the heretics inside.”

Ariadna didn’t get to see which of her followers swore their loyalty to Karn. She hoped they all did, rather than choose their deaths, but in her heart, she knew some – perhaps many – would rather die than side with their conquerors. As she watched from the back of a wagon, the flames licked higher behind her as her holy temple was consumed by an enormous blaze, slowly being reduced to rubble and destroying the focus of her worship. She felt that with that, the last shred of her godhood vanished.

3 thoughts on “Chapter 2: The Temple

  1. With a start, she looked up at the figurehead of the fountain – a beautiful woman, carved of pure white stone as water flowed down from a pitcher held by her naked breasts.

    Shit, evidently I designed this temple.

    Ok, in all seriousness, this is an emotional rollercoaster of a chapter. It’s sort of a bittersweet moment when Ariadna first arrives and Leila’s father approaches her. Her recoiling from him is pretty realistic, given what she’s just been through, and it’s pretty clear he knows what’s been done to her, if not the exact circumstances or magnitude of it.

    I hadn’t asked this last time, but I did notice that the art of her you have features blond hair, while you described her hair in Chapter 1 as silver-white. I’m rather glad I didn’t ask that, because this chapter explains that the blond hair is her more human look.

    Then, of course, the soldiers of Karn breach the temple and, not going to lie, that was awesome when we learned that she wasn’t entirely human, and could still vent massive amounts of magic in all directions and incinerate her rapists.

    Less awesome when we learn that she killed a lot of her own followers as well. In fairness to Ariadna, that was hardly her fault. I get the sense that she’s never actually used that particular ability before and was sort of fighting via intuition, so the exact effects might not be something she was prepared for.

    The world-building here is interesting. So the gods are locked into an alignment (again using D&D terms) which keeps them as sort of moral standards for their followers, but with (I think) the theft of the scroll, that restriction was momentarily lifted, allowing Karn to shift to a much worse version of himself, and unfortunately with the new scroll in place he’s now locked into that, which explains why his followers are now much worse than they were before.

    As for the effects on Ariadna, they’re interesting, but I do think she may be harder on herself than she needs to be. Not that it doesn’t make sense. She’s only had all of the options (in terms of 100% free will) available to her for a couple of hours at most, while humans grow up with all of them, so everything she feels seems heightened. She’s not just angry; she wants to kill all her brother’s followers, and feels like she’d be willing to sacrifice her own to do so. Again, I think this is because so many of these feelings are new, so they’re all going to extremes; it’s almost child-like, in a way. It scares her, which is understandable. Her solution, to try and wound her enemies without killing them, is potentially viable, depending on the circumstances, though it doesn’t end up working out here (not her fault though; her followers kill them).

    In other news, she never got the chance to tell Leila what happened to her dad. I’m sure that won’t cause any problems whatsoever down the line. 😉

    We’re also introduced to what I suppose will be our Heavy for the story, Jaras, who is super intimidating right off the bat, and I like his backstory as a pit fighter who schemed his way into the position he holds now. Obviously luck was involved, but how much luck is something to ponder, since it informs how cunning our villain is going to be here.

    Well, Ariadna’s ploy worked, allowing the survivors in the catacombs to escape, but now she’s being taken back to “the citadel” wherever that is. If she’s going to use any of those abilities, she’ll have to learn to control and focus them somewhat, so that she doesn’t cause this kind of collateral damage again.

    As she watched from the back of a wagon, the flames licked higher behind her as her holy temple was consumed by an enormous blaze, slowly being reduced to rubble and destroying the focus of her worship. She felt that with that, the last shred of her godhood vanished.

    Then again, depending on how literal that passage was, she may not have to worry about those abilities of hers ever again (damn it, and she just got those! 😛 ). On the other hand, she would now be about as weak as any normal human with no combat training whatsoever, so she’d have a new set of problems.

    I’ll find out tomorrow!


  2. Heyyy, two in one day, you lunatic!

    “In other news, she never got the chance to tell Leila what happened to her dad. I’m sure that won’t cause any problems whatsoever down the line. 😉”

    In fairness, when this was originally put out there was no art that shows Leila as being a character that shows up again 😛 Also, something you didn’t comment on is that it seems like Leila might already suspect who the priestess in the fountain is… that she saw something that she can’t explain, even if an 8 year old girl can’t really find the right words to express it.

    “Then again, depending on how literal that passage was, she may not have to worry about those abilities of hers ever again (damn it, and she just got those! 😛 ). On the other hand, she would now be about as weak as any normal human with no combat training whatsoever, so she’d have a new set of problems”

    For her in her current position, there is a definite element of “perception is reality.” The temple itself probably didn’t change anything, but it being destroyed probably feels to her at the moment like it should.

    “We’re also introduced to what I suppose will be our Heavy for the story, Jaras, who is super intimidating right off the bat, and I like his backstory as a pit fighter who schemed his way into the position he holds now. Obviously luck was involved, but how much luck is something to ponder, since it informs how cunning our villain is going to be here.”

    What? Luck playing a role in MY story about gods of good and bad luck? No way!

    “As for the effects on Ariadna, they’re interesting, but I do think she may be harder on herself than she needs to be. Not that it doesn’t make sense. She’s only had all of the options (in terms of 100% free will) available to her for a couple of hours at most, while humans grow up with all of them, so everything she feels seems heightened. She’s not just angry; she wants to kill all her brother’s followers, and feels like she’d be willing to sacrifice her own to do so. Again, I think this is because so many of these feelings are new, so they’re all going to extremes; it’s almost child-like, in a way. It scares her, which is understandable. Her solution, to try and wound her enemies without killing them, is potentially viable, depending on the circumstances, though it doesn’t end up working out here (not her fault though; her followers kill them).”

    Nailed it. There is ALSO the feeling that, if she changes too much, she might no longer fit the mantle of power she wore in the heavens and her divinity will be forever lost to her.


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