a short story
Awakened from hellish reverie, from the sounds and the feelings of blood and of fury, blanketed in the shadow of a forgotten struggle – the warriors on the battlefield stop.
Ten thousand little faces turn to the source. They stare into the maw of their future and are found wanting. There is an omen to be known in the face of this grandeur.
“Behold, gaze upon your doom.”
Stark darkness of thought overpowers the rational and surrenders them to the destiny of the moment. Residing in the fear of the unknown, they are immobilized as violently as their actions just previous. Before, the fighters advanced in the bloodlust of compelling differences. Purposeful annihilation, an endgame to progress towards. They fought for control, They fought for power, They fought for lands, They fought for survival. They fought for home. They fought for themselves.
They no longer fight.
The bleeding hasn’t stopped, but the world has. Damage is done, but new wounds on hold. For a moment, a respite from the condemnation of cold blades and hasty death. There is only this sight to behold, an obsidian orb of seeming malignantly imminent damnation. The realms of Man quelled by the fiery vengeance of one Chronos returned. Finally, this is a reckoning against the sin of self destruction. Residing in the twilight of Time’s fast embrace, they will no longer seek to know fate. Its arrival stares down upon their souls in a form of hellfire-ringed perfect void. Mortality is not forgotten, but is magnified under its shadow reach.
To continue, perhaps, would lead to all deaths. To the deaths of everything they know. The Gods do not game. Fire encircling fragile existence, they are awaiting a final judgment now. Are they to be cast into Hades, ten thousand mortal coils shed, final infinite atonements awaiting the warriors who tread upon the throne?
They each walk from their dropped weapons. Stupefied from the presence and in the confusion of daylight’s darkness, they break the engagement’s lines. There are no territories, no lands. There are no more sides. There is no chain of command. The terms are not formally penned, put to page, or even discussed at length. The meaning of the death-dealing skirmish, this raging machine of war – temporarily and easily deposed.
Under this immortal black sun and on this field of infernal battle, Peace is reached here & now, on the heels of a long war now ended. ~