SCALES-99

“You know that’s not how it works.” He sighed, scratching his head.

I frowned and he studied me for a few seconds before continuing.

“But just from what I’ve seen – you seem to have the strength of a hundred men. You fight like you’ve spent your entire life in battle; you heal completely from wounds that would have killed anyone else. The prophecy is definitely doing something, but I don’t know that we’ll ever know the specifics.”

I shrugged.

“Sounds good enough to me, I guess. It doesn’t really matter anymore, anyways.”

Charon raised an eyebrow.

“I mean,” I continued, “When I first heard about it, I felt like I needed to know, but now…it’s enough if I make it back alive every night.”

Charon gave me a lopsided smile.

“It gets easier with time, kid.”

Normally I might have been peeved at being called kid but I could tell I was seeing a rare moment of sincerity.

“It helps that I have some hooded being looking out for me, though.” I offered, smiling a little myself.

He reached behind his head and pulled a grey hood over the top half of his face before it disappeared.

“Guilty as charged. Could I ask how you - ?”

“Hunch.” I offered, satisfied.

Charon sighed.

“I was assigned by Lucifer to act as the Guardian of the Prophesied.”

“Isn’t the prophecy enough to protect me?”

“Just an extra precaution.” He offered, “Can’t be too careful with Hell’s champion.”

Fair enough.

“In any case…” I started, “Sorry. For all the times I’ve been a jerk.”

He waved away my apology.

“You treat me better than most. Don’t worry about it.”

I felt another question hit me.

“Charon?”

“Yes?”

“If we win…what do you think the King will do with Purgatory?”

He scoffed.

“I’d rather not know. Probably take their land, enslave their people…”

“Would he do something like that?” I asked, “I…he just seems…above that.”

Charon laughed.

“With all due respect, Commander, he’s the devil. He may be civil to you, but when his pride is at stake…”

Yikes. I had my work cut out for me. I didn’t know what was scarier – disappointing Zeus or dealing with angry Lucifer.

“Point taken.”

The drums began beating a march just then, and I pulled Omen into a trot.

I’d have to think about all that later.

It was time to win a war.

The End

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