Redemption Chapter 10
By Janet Monstwillo
There had always been an unspoken law in the village of Igmar-Boleyn. After a couple had been given to each other in betrothal and marriage, all the other prospective suitors were to give them a gift and forget any hard feelings. The Cetra were a people of peace and respect; rare was the time a man was bitter over losing a lady to a rival and, in those times, it was ever rarer for him to show it.
Riana was the daughter of the Cetra leader, a beautiful maiden who had a very close link with the Planet. Despite these obvious gifts, she also had such a sparkling personality that she would have been sought after even if she had been a lowly peasant. There were few peasants in the egalitarian community, for the only ones were those who wished to be.
The day came when the girl and her father had decided on the best person for her to marry and the announcement was made. Riana would be married to a young hunter named Kal'od. Thus, the ritual gifts were given by the spurned suitors and life returned to normalcy.
At about this time, something massive fell from the skies near the village. The elders conferred and decided that a spy should be sent to go check out the crater and make sure everything was all right. The man chosen for this job was named Reiven, who had been one of Riana's suitors and had still remained a close friend.
He had kept his severe jealousy of Kal'od deep inside his heart and it had begun to fester. So as he walked through the snowy drifts and climbed up the cliff created by the impact, all that was on his mind was how much Kal'od did not deserve to have Riana as his wife. He peered over the edge of the cliff. (Gaia's Cliff) he thought to himself (like the mother of the Planet.) This poetic, if unfitting, name stuck with the landmark for millennia. Down in the deep crater was a large, glowing pod, unlike anything Reiven had ever seen. He debated for a moment, then slowly climbed down the edge and crept towards it.
As he approached the object, a small hatch opened on it and a beautiful woman stepped out. "Hello Reiven," she said.
He was startled by her knowledge of his name. "How do you know that is what I am called?"
"I have been watching you ever since I arrived. I have seen your life and your problems. I can see that your village does not appreciate you as it should."
Always a bit conceited, he tossed his head at the things she said. He often had the same ideas himself. "I guess you're right. They sent me here to check on what landed."
"They sent you because they thought it was dangerous. They are jealous of what you are capable of, and that's why you were not allowed to have Riana."
The glowing embers within him surged in a new flame. "You knew of that?"
"Yes. I have a power that is greatly beyond those of you Cetra. I see some of this power in you. The reason why the elders fear you is because they do not want the Cetra to lose their power over the humans." She laid a hand on his arm. "I can help you, though."
"Can you?" He looked at her. "Help me get what I want?"
She nodded. "Together, we can be most powerful."
Reiven smiled. "What is your name?"
He should have noticed, but he was too blinded by the power she held before him. Her name spelled out disaster. In the Cetra tongue, Jenn o' Vah means "destruction from the skies."
* * * * * * * * * * * *
He had returned to the village with the visitor, saying she was from a Cetra clan on a far off continent. Her people were much more advanced than the Boleynian clan and this woman had much to teach them. The elders were cautious after hearing the innuendo in her name, but eventually allowed Jenova to stay with them. She was an eager member of the community, learning their rituals and customs. Her beauty earned her suitors of her own very quickly, but she sent them on her way. She had been betrothed long ago to a special man, she explained.
Reiven's rise to power took place slowly. He began to perform small miracles, and no one realized this was due to Jenova's aid. He was very confused by her instructions, but she was correct. Every time he let her use her strange instruments to place her own flesh inside him, along with Lifestream, he became more and more powerful. Soon, the village had two factions. One who were loyal to the old chief, and the old ways that existed before Jenova had came to live there, and the faction which followed Reiven and his doctrine of divine right.
He said that ruling the village was his divine right, and that he ought to have been given that right by receiving Riana's hand in marriage. Since the chief did not allow that, he was defying Reiven's divine right. This angered his followers, but Reiven insisted they have patience. Those who were set against him would soon be punished.
The next time a group of protestors came to visit him, they soon developed lesions all over their body. This group soon died from the mysterious disease. The other members of the village were consumed by fear. What had they done to anger the Planet so, that people who disagreed with one man would be condemned to die?
Jenova came to him one night, very late. "I trust that you are enjoying your rise to power," she said.
Reiven bowed. "Yes. Is there something you ask of me?"
"No. I am happy in my simple life here. The place where I used to live, I had much responsibility. I enjoy doing what I wish."
"And as long as I live, I will make sure you do whatever you wish, my Deliverer."
"I was hoping you would think that way. I need to ask you a favor. I'll explain as well as I can."
"Anything you wish from me will be done."
"I have told you before that I come from another star, and this gives me the chance to see things that your eyes cannot."
"Yes, Jenova." He studied her face.
"I will live on this Planet for many years, happy and peaceful, lest for one man. This man will have the ability to destroy me completely, obliterating my remains to the ends of the universe, to prevent my happiness."
"That is horrible! Let me kill this man!"
Jenova smiled cruelly. "The man is not a man yet. He is not even born yet. The woman you used to love, Riana, is heavy with child. Her child shall be the one to kill me. This is why the chief picked Riana to lay with Kal'od. He knew their offspring would be enough to destroy me." She concentrated and squeezed one tear from her eye.
"Dearest one." Reiven placed a protective hand on her shoulder. "Do not worry about this. I shall prevent this. I will make sure Riana does not have that child."
"That is not enough. She must not be allowed to be with child again. The danger is too great, she must be destroyed." Jenova stared deeply into his eyes. "The village must be destroyed."
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Jenova sighed, dropping Reiven's head to the ground. (I guess it was too much to expect the mortal not to care about his village.) The jealous man had been able to drive the sword into the woman he had desired so dearly, but could not give up on his hopes to reign over the entire village.
(So, I was forced to use the cells I had placed inside him... Make him submit to my will.) Reiven, under her manipulation, had destroyed his village anyway, just for the sole purpose of torturing him. (My puppet, yet he got to see and hear everyone he had known cursing his name as they died, and died horribly.)
He had ran to her, weeping and screaming, telling her that he didn't need her help anymore. ("Get out of my life, out of my head!" were his exact words, I believe. It's not my fault he can't follow directions.) She kicked at his head. (Besides, I was getting annoyed with him, anyway. I only used him because it was so much easier for him to go kill the anointed child than for me to.)
She shuddered at the thought of the child's name. The child who would now never be born...never. Pa'at Rich, son of the sun.
Azura was thinking about the dream she had the night before. She saw the events through Jenova's eyes, and the scenes had terrified her. She wondered if her father had dreams like this. Did her sister and brother have dreams like this?
She forced herself to concentrate again on Patrick's instructions on staff use. (Does Patrick have dreams like this?)
"Pay attention, Zuri!"
"I--I'm sorry. I was just...I had a nightmare last night, and it's hard to get out of my head." The most disturbing thing to her was the familiarity of all of the names involved. (I don't get it. Even if everything that happened in that dream was true, it happened two thousand years ago. What does that have to do with now?) There was nothing in her brain to tell her the truth though, which was that her dream had a lot to do with the present.
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