ysabetwordsmith: Shaeth is drunk (one god)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is spillover from the June 6, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] antisocialite_forum. It also fills the "seeing from a different perspective" square in my 3-1-17 card for the Disability Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] society_of_antisocialites. It belongs to the series One God's Story of Mid-Life Crisis.

Warning: This poem contains some intense topics. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It features clingy evil cultists, drunken orgies, rape, reputation, references to prostitution, confusion and anxiety, alcohol-induced impotence, vaguely described injuries from sexual assault, indifference, and other mayhem. If these are sensitive issues for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.


"Seeing from a Different Perspective"


"We have a problem," Belfegar announced.
"Zargon has talked Volac into making
the drunken orgies more ... traditional."

"What do you mean, traditional?" said Shaeth.

"Well, you remember the sack of Xeth?"
Belfegar said. "That was the inspiration
for the last event that they threw."

The sack of Xeth had ended
six months of siege, and hordes of
horny soldiers had swelled the ranks
of Shaeth's dedicated followers.

Being evil at the time,
the women they fucked over
the altar had not been willing.

"What does this have to do
with me?" Shaeth said, rubbing
the spot between his eyes that
was beginning to ache. "I am
no longer the God of Evil!"

"They're drunken orgies,"
Trobby said quietly. "That
makes it your business."

"But why?" Shaeth whined.
"I am so sick and tired of this."

"Because you're the God of Drunks,
so now when people think about booze,
they think of you," said Trobby. "Is this
the kind of thing you want them thinking?"

No it was not. Shaeth was trying
to get away from that sort of thing.

"You know bad things can happen
to drunk women who pass out
in front of men, right?" said Prell.

"I hadn't really paid attention
to that," Shaeth admitted.

"How do you think we became
whores?" asked Febretta.

"I figured if I was going
to get fucked, I might as well
get paid for it," Katreese added.

Shaeth's stomach flipped over
in a way that had nothing to do
with the vast amount of alcohol
he had consumed that day.

He braced himself against the corner
of the table. "How many of my women
do you think ...?" His voice trailed off.

"Maybe not all of us," Febretta said,
looking at Katreese, who continued,
"Probably most of us, though."

Prell just looked grim.

"... and not just women,"
Trobby said softly.

The corner of the table
splintered under Shaeth's grip.

"I'll clean that up," Prell said,
and headed to the closet
for a dustpan and broom.

"Why is everything changing?"
Shaeth muttered. "This didn't
bother me so much before!"

"Well, remember that you're
seeing from a different perspective
now than you did before," Trobby said.
"Booze messes with your head, but
sometimes, you do find truth
at the bottom of a bottle."

"I don't know what to do,"
Shaeth said, sighing.

"Do what we always do,"
Trobby said with a shrug.
"Take care of the drunks."

"So when do we go get our drunks?"
Belfegar asked, leaning forward.

"Now is a good time," Shaeth said,
and so that is what they did.

They went to the temple
where Zargon and Volac were
presiding over a drunken orgy.

That is, Zargon was presiding.

Volac was already too smashed
to get it up, and kept fumbling in
his pants trying to raise the dead.

"Sorry, fellow, but that never works,"
Trobby said sympathetically. "Once
you've drowned your sorrows, I'm afraid
certain joys tend to go with them."

"My Lord? Why are you here?"
Zargon said, struggling to his feet.
"Have you come back to us?"

"No," Shaeth said. "I've just
come to pick up my people."

He peeled the passed-out blonde
off the altar, effortlessly snapping
the gold-plated chains that held her.

Sobering spell. Cleaning spell.
Healing spell. Healing spell. Hea--

Shaeth freed one hand to smack Zargon
hard enough to knock him senseless.
What a mess he'd made of the girl.

He finished the healing spell,
made sure that his current followers
had collected all relevant parties
from the remains of the revel,
and then led them out.

Shaeth was pretty sure
that he could hear Volac crying
somewhere behind him, but he ignored it.

He had more important things to worry about.

* * *

Notes:

Drunken orgies often appear in fiction.

Sexual assault frequently involves alcohol. Although rape is often considered as a crime against women, some victims are male. Sexual assault and prostitution are linked closely, too. Read about healing from rape and how to help a survivor.

(no subject)

Date: 2017-07-03 08:32 am (UTC)
alatefeline: Painting of a cat asleep on a book. (Default)
From: [personal profile] alatefeline
Typo alert: Highlight-to-see-spoilers isn't covered up correctly on my screen. Yours?

Re: Fixed!

Date: 2017-07-03 08:46 am (UTC)
alatefeline: Painting of a cat asleep on a book. (Default)
From: [personal profile] alatefeline
Worked!

I appreciate the poem. It's got an edge on it like a chipped glass - and not one full of grape juice.

(no subject)

Date: 2017-07-03 10:37 am (UTC)
technoshaman: Tux (Default)
From: [personal profile] technoshaman
I hope those two find that anything even slightly fermented costs them two days' lunch ...

... and that they have a permanent inability to... worship ..

You did achieve a good balance between edge and Endings. :like:

(no subject)

Date: 2017-07-03 03:29 pm (UTC)
mdlbear: (happy-turtle)
From: [personal profile] mdlbear
Good one!

(no subject)

Date: 2018-02-27 08:19 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
So I reread this whole series earlier today ( before reading over the Paladin path one) and I think I fell in love with this one all over again.

It's funny, I see some similarities - conception of evil, Divine spheres, but so so many differences even if both have walking gods.

And honestly, something about Shaeth's path - it's not a redemption arc , he got bored rather than regretting anything , but it has so many similar tropes. Learning new ways, finding a new paths, not being sure, uncertainty and perseverance, trying and doing your best.

Your God's wind up human without loosing the things that make them special and different. They don't end up as just super powerful magicians. They see the world differently, are different, and yet are so very human.

And - I think rereading all of these helped me finally figure out why I find your works so calming and soothing and heartening to read. Not just LIFC which I think you said was meant to be hurt/comfort - but the rest too.

Your characters interact the way I wish humans in real life would. Kindness, oppeness, willingness to compromise and a desire to cooperate. They tend to treat each other with compassion ( possibly bc most have been hurt themselves) as well as - well I'd call it salt of the earth practical common sense approach? Bad description but...

The interactions - this arc, army of one, monster house, Hart's farm, lifc, path of paladins, one gods midlife crisis - even the confrontations tend to be cooperative in the end, reasonable, kind and compassionate, understanding.

Somehow without being overly sweet or feeling unrealistic/out of touch. Not quite sure how you balance that in your writing to accomplish it.

(no subject)

Date: 2018-02-27 08:26 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] torc87
So I decided that I'm commenting so much on your work I needed to get a dreamwidth account so I could stop being annonymus and know when you reply.

I'm reposting my last comment mostly bc then I get an email telling me about it.




So I reread this whole series earlier today ( before reading over the Paladin path one) and I think I fell in love with this one all over again.

It's funny, I see some similarities - conception of evil, Divine spheres, but so so many differences even if both have walking gods.

And honestly, something about Shaeth's path - it's not a redemption arc , he got bored rather than regretting anything , but it has so many similar tropes. Learning new ways, finding a new paths, not being sure, uncertainty and perseverance, trying and doing your best.

Your God's wind up human without loosing the things that make them special and different. They don't end up as just super powerful magicians. They see the world differently, are different, and yet are so very human.

And - I think rereading all of these helped me finally figure out why I find your works so calming and soothing and heartening to read. Not just LIFC which I think you said was meant to be hurt/comfort - but the rest too.

Your characters interact the way I wish humans in real life would. Kindness, oppeness, willingness to compromise and a desire to cooperate. They tend to treat each other with compassion ( possibly bc most have been hurt themselves) as well as - well I'd call it salt of the earth practical common sense approach? Bad description but...

The interactions - this arc, army of one, monster house, Hart's farm, lifc, path of paladins, one gods midlife crisis - even the confrontations tend to be cooperative in the end, reasonable, kind and compassionate, understanding.

Somehow without being overly sweet or feeling unrealistic/out of touch. Not quite sure how you balance that in your writing to accomplish it.

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