Original Stories Fan Fiction ❯ Natsuhama ( Chapter 1 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

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Obsolete Garden

By: Revamp

Chapter 1: Natsuhama

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In the center of the universe, a single being stood. They were
unfazed by all logic and laws of nature. The zero gravity and
crushing atmosphere that would render any astronaut dead didn’t
apply to them as they stood erect and didn’t seem to need oxygen to
live, despite looking human. All around them, countless stars
shimmered like far-off gemstones, and galaxies with intricate
systems of planets floated around them.

It had been like this since the dawn of their creation, and it
would be for many eons to come. They were confined here, in a fate
to wander the cosmos and look upon it with eyes as void and gray a
rain clouds. They dressed in a long, white skirt that flowed out
into ruffles, and a long-sleeved shirt with wizard-sleeves adorned
in ruffles. A sleeveless, gray shirt was worn underneath with a
large, black cross on it that covered the front of it. Their high
collar gave birth to clusters of gray ruffles that contrasted the
ivory of their skin and long, black, silken hair cascaded to the
ground, dragging behind them for several feet.

They looked neither male nor female, as they had no definite
gender. They were an entity, not something to easily be defined by
laws of science and logic.

`Nothing changes. In this abyss, I will always remain. I live in
all things. I can only wish silently for all of the things that I
cannot have. I wonder, if I should just give up and succumb to my
own element?’
This question the being asked themselves, not
truly expecting an answer.

“A loveless and lonely existence,” a male voice chimed
in. It was young but not boyish, charismatic in tone and yet it
held something sinister and sultry to it.

It was a voice this being came to recognize.

“Rosario?” The being turned to see someone standing
behind them.

They were a tall man, dressed in a bright red suit with black shoes
that had golden buckles. His pants held vertical stripes that were
pink and red and his vest was a shade of rose. Around his neck was
a pink bow with a fully blossomed rose in the middle.

His physical appearance screamed inhuman, as he had four pink
dragon wings, and two, vine-like tails with a large leaf at the
end. Atop of his mess of short hair, that was curly and spiky were
two rose bushes that had several bloomed, red roses. This man was
beautiful, with long, black thick lashes and young features. He was
someone who could charm even the most hard to get of mindsets.

“You can’t love anyone because it would alter your judgment
and make you biased. Becoming impartial would make you corrupt. The
untouchable one. Too bad, considering how cute you are,” the
rose demon placed a hand to his chin as his dark pink eyes looked
the figure up and down.

They were truly stunning, tall and elegant, something dim against
the brilliance of the stars. Muted things had their special beauty,
as did this one. It was cruel to put them in such a body if no one
could dare to do as much as touch it.

“Deities like you make me happy I’m unable to be
tempted,” Fate knew the rose deity was nothing but trouble.
Rosario had a deadly type of charm, that of a venus fly trap,
something that ensnared it’s pray by luring it in with its sweet
beauty and charm.

“Is that why you hide here? So no one can tell you that they
care?” Rosario knew that the deity locked themselves in the
endless void of space where few came unless they needed something
from them. They might say it’s destiny but Rosario thought they
were hiding behind their little shroud for more reasons than just
that.

“If I become corrupt, then all of you will die completely.
Your worlds and all that’s in them…space, time, the essence
of life will be purged into a void. I am order itself. The
foundation on which all things are erected,” the long-haired
being knew this to be true. They were the point on which reality
pivoted. Without them, there would be no other deities, no worlds,
and nothing in general.

“So, even if I sold you my soul, you’d deny me?”
Rosario couldn’t be faulted for trying. It would have been quite a
feat to be the lover of fate itself.

“You’re cruel. Don’t act like you care,” Fate frowned
deeply and their voice took on a cold tone.

“It just seems tragic for someone to have that kind of
existence. It doesn’t seem good for your judgment at all,”
the rose god’s face took on false sorrow, but in all reality he
pitied Fate for their shallow existence. How did being alone
dictate how you passed judgment on people? How could one judge
people when they were nothing but alone all of their life? That
seemed like it would be more of a hindrance than something that
would help.

“Deception has been purged from me. I am atoning.” It
wasn’t just their destiny, it was also their punishment.

“You make it sound like you’re a lowly beast to be
punished,” Rosario’s expression shifted again as he placed a
hand on his hip. Fate really should have more pride in
themself.

“You understand nothing,” Fate gave a cold
response.

“You’re such a cynic,” Rosario teased.

Fate turned to the god and gave him a serious look. “Let’s
say that I gave into you. There are many errors.”

Rosario held out his hand. “Give me equal power. If you
understand your element, you’ll do fine. Look at Penumbra and
Beelzebub, they would kill each other if either of them screwed up.
They understand each other the most.”

There were instances where two deities could work together. If
those two could do it, then so could they if Fate made it so. They
had the power to control destiny, so they could very well make
themself and the rose demon of equal power. Fate couldn’t act like
they didn’t know this.

“I have been out of line before,” Fate reminded Rosario
of their past mistakes.

“Who hasn’t?” Rosario waved away the issue. “I
think you’ve seen all of us at this rate.”

Gray eyes narrowed. “I can’t afford to go back. That is the
difference between us.”

The other gods had their mistakes, and some made more than others
but Fate was not allowed to make such decisions. Fate could not act
in such a manner for their consequences would be dire and affect
others in the process.

“I hate this,” Rosario frowned. It was harder to
convince Fate to give in to him than he thought.

“This is only a fraction of time. Time is temporary and
forever changing. With each word we speak, another interval of time
passes,” Fate gestured to the many universes and solar
systems. It seemed as thought everything stood still in their
little dimension but in truth time was the same there as it was
anywhere else.

“It’s all the same,” Rosario didn’t feel any difference
from one minute to the next. He had existed so long that time had
grown to become pointless to him.

“You’re taking advantage of your lifespan. You should be
grateful,” Fate frowned. They were very displeased that a god
would do such a thing, especially given they were handed lifespans
that were vast compared to most living creatures.

“Why? Because there are humans who want it?” Rosario
thought that was a very fickle reason to feel that his life could
at times be a little too boring.

“Mortals long for things that seem grand when tinted with
rose. That is the symbolism of your namesake,” Fate looked to
the rose god. Weren’t all things rose his specialty? Surely he
could see what splendor that mortals would see in those with
lifespans that superseded their own.

“I don’t understand them.” It seemed much better to
have a shorter lifespan to him. At least being reincarnated as
another person would be interesting, if for nothing more to not
have memories so everything was new and fresh once more.

“I do,” Fate disagreed, “we all want things that
seem grand without understanding the full consequences of our
situations. Even the gods are tempted.” He was not excluded
from that majority.

“That’s why we’re all in different worlds now.” Their
individual desires caused the gods to go out and pursue their own
individual goals and create worlds for themselves.

“Pangea was doomed when you left,” Fate’s eyes narrowed
again. Did he really think that excuse was going to fly with them?
He knew very well why the gods had different worlds.

Rosario’s demeanor changed from flirtatious and outgoing to solemn
and serious. His tone dropped after a moment of silence passed
between the two of them. “Don’t guilt me. It was a collective
decision between Rosalina and I.”

“It was mean to be. What is done cannot be undone. Fate is
cruel. It doesn’t discriminate, nor does it make exceptions, just
as I. That is the thing about my element, young or old, healthy or
ill, it will happen regardless.” Fate was something that
played a hand in all lives, it held no mercy as to what it dished
out and it wasn’t waivered by sympathy. It had long been the
coldest and cruelest element of them all.

“Even to gods,” Rosario knew they weren’t exempt from
its hand. At one point, he too had suffered from its mighty
blow.

“We are not above justice,” and no one knew that better
than Fate themself.

“Some of us have yet to learn that,” Rosario
replied.

“Some of us? You’re all a little ignorant on that
subject.” Especially with the multiple times that the gods
have screwed up in one way or another. What on earth was Rosario
even referring to with a comment like that?

“Well, you don’t have to be so harsh,” the rose demon
whined.

“You’re not exempt.” Did Rosario really think he was so
special? What a joke. No one was above their element. Even they
were slave to it.

“And here I thought I was special,” Rosario knew it to
be true. He just wanted to tease Fate a little more.

“Your worth is determined by your own mind,” Fate
wasn’t really falling for his games. In fact, the deity was growing
a little tired of the rose god’s antics.

“And because of that, I’m important. Besides, it’s because I
left that Pangea fell apart. That makes me important,”
Rosario gestured to himself with great pride. Without him, there
was no vegetation in the massive world known as Pangea. He was an
important part of it because he left. It couldn’t even function
without him, even with the other gods so desperately trying to hold
it together.

“We created it together. Of course it wouldn’t be able to
stand without any of us. The balance was broken when you
left,” Fate didn’t see why he was acting like he was the sole
thread that held their world together. Rosario was just as
important as any of the other gods. If anyone else had left besides
him, then the world would have been just as easily doomed. Everyone
held equal responsibility.

A small, twisted smile crossed the rose god’s face. “Do you
hate it now?”

“I am used to it,” Fate had an apathetic answer to
that.

“That’s not the question,” Rosario pushed.

“I didn’t call you here for this,” Fate was hardly in
the mood to argue with this idiot.

“Well, I have all of the answers I need regardless,”
Rosario beamed and put his hands behind his back. “What
did you call me here for?”

“It is time for the vegetation to reproduce and the worlds to
become fertile,” Fate informed the rose god on his annual
duties. There was much to be done in the neighboring worlds. It was
time for him to play his part and act on his powers.

“Ah, it is!” The god beamed. He loved this time of the
year. “Time to pay a visit to Natsuhama!” He nearly
sang out the name of that wonderful world.

“You should take your other half,” Fate gently prodded
him to give into destiny. This would serve as a subtle warning on
his behalf.

Rosario just smiled nervously and waved the subject away again,
sounding all too happy in doing so. “Come now, Fate. You know
that I’m not going to do that.” What were they thinking in
bringing up such a silly idea? Didn’t they know how ill Rosalina
was? Surely they did all things considering.

“How long do you think you can keep that up?” Fate was
even suspicious of him at this rate. Something like this was going
to bite him in the ass if he continued to act in this manner.

“As long as I want. You don’t really think I’m going to let
her leave just because you ask, do you?” Rosario wasn’t going
to do that for anyone, not even Fate itself. They really should
stop trying to butt into his affairs like that. They were being
rude.

“Of course not,” Fate sighed, knowing they could do
nothing about this matter at the moment. “That’s hardly like
you.”

What a stubborn deity.

“I have my reasons,” and for those reasons he would not
comply.

“Be careful of your decisions, they impact more than you
think,” Fate would give him one final warning. If he insisted
on acting in this manner, then he would have to face consequences.
Even knowing this, if he continued to do so, things would end badly
for him. They worried for the stubborn rose god.

Rosario waved in dismissal, “I’m a god. Of
course I know that. You should leave it all to me.” He
had this. They honestly worried far too much about he and his other
half. Everything would work out just fine and he knew that to be
true. After all, he had been doing this for millennia.

“I’d rather not,” Fate didn’t trust him at all.

“You wound me so,” Rosario placed the back of his hand
to his head dramatically and clutched his chest. This only earned a
more exasperate expression from Fate.

“You should go to Natsuhama and stop screwing around
here.” In fact, they really wished he would go. The sooner
the better. They were tired of dealing with his mental
gymnastics.

“Yes, yes! I know that Cambria will be so happy to see
me! I’m going to give her the best welcome!” Rosario was
excited to finally see the Summer Goddess again. She was one of his
favorite people to visit, and someone who loved flowers just as
much as he did.

Fate sighed, “Better you than me.”

“You know you love me,” Rosario winked playfully and
flashed Fate a brilliant smile.

“No,” Fate deadpanned.

Rosario kissed his palm sweetly and blew it towards his fellow god
before kicking his heels up. Red light surrounded him in streams
that encased him like glowing ribbons. Blinding light flashed and
rose petals rained down before the god disappeared. All that was
left was a pile of rose petals where he used to be.

Gray eyes stared at the velvet petals. “All things will come
to a head eventually, whether you want them or not, Rose
God.”

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The sun shone brightly, and large, cotton clouds floated lazily
through the skies in contrast with the bustling activity below. The
land was sprinkled with blossoming flowers, rich foliage and many
lush trees. Creatures of all different races ran around as quickly
as they could or fluttered their wings as they attempted to
pollinate as many flowers as they could.

Natsuhama was a bustling today, as it was important. They had to
make sure that all of the flowers were pollinated the best they
could. The Rose God would come behind and get the ones they missed,
and provide them with more than enough pollen to do so, but they
all felt as if they must play their part in caring for their
massive world.

Under the shade of a large tree, the Summer Goddess hovered above
the ground, along with her bodyguard. She was small in stature and
had large, black butterfly wings with one white diamond on the top
and bottom. She wore a black dress that was lined with diamond
patterns, along with black mary janes. Her whip-like tail had a
white diamond at the end and her black, messy hair sported fluffy
pigtails that hung over her shoulders, fastened by white ribbons.
Her other most notable feature was her odd, sienna-colored horns
that protruded up, looped in a circle and curled around, making
them unlike any animal of her world.

Golden eyes watched serenely over her many denizens who were all
working. “Everyone is working so hard to make the flowers
become pollinated so they will flourish. It’s a good day, isn’t it
Lestat,” her young voice spoke with kindness as she glanced
to the tall demon that stood slightly behind her.

“Hmmm…” the deep voice of her friend cut through
the air.

Lestat was a tall, looming man with snow white skin and hair that
was shoulder length and fell over one eye. He wore a long, black
cape that cascaded on the ground and curled up, making many pointed
tendrils. The article of clothing had a high collar and on the
inside was bright blue with sparkling stars. Atop of his head were
two curving black horns with spikes that shot from them, making it
impossible to grab them without getting stabbed.

His one uncovered eye was cold and deep blue, and he adjusted a
large, sky blue bow on his neck.

“Even Iliya and Venetia are helping out,” Cambria
smiled. “We should do something nice for everyone in the mean
time. We can have a party to celebrate a job well done.”

She thought that sounded like a great idea! It was nice to reward
everyone for a job well done. Surely after a long day, a little
party would be just the thing to liven their spirits and take the
edge off. Cambria turned to Lestat to see what his opinion would be
on the matter.

“If that’s what you desire,” the stoic man closed his
eye, not looking too pleased with her suggestion.

“Don’t you think it’ll be fun?” Cambria really wanted
his opinion, as it mattered deeply to her.

“They may be tired,” there were several problems with
that idea. Lestat knew that to be one of them. It would be hard to
have a cheerful setting if everyone was dragging themselves across
the party floor. If they were to have a party, then he thought it
best to at least wait a couple of days when people felt more up to
it.

“Is something wrong with that?” Cambria arched an
eyebrow. Was it really so bad to want her subjects to have fun?

“You’re our goddess. You should save your energy on more
important things,” Lestat knew that she had a kind heart and
that she wanted nothing more than to make people happy, but he
didn’t want her doing mundane chores to do so. They needed to be
more accepting of her and realize that she is not only their friend
but their god.

“Everyone’s health on Natsuhama is important to me,”
Cambria appreciated his concern but she wanted to help everyone as
much as she could. What good was a goddess if she could not take
care of her people?

“You’re too kind to the people here,” Lestat decided to
come out and say it. She had to hear it from someone or her
subjects would be inclined to take advantage of her.

“I want everyone here to be happy. I love Natsuhama so very
much, and everyone here is precious to me. I want my world to be
peaceful and happy. I try to take the other’s god’s stories as
precautionary tales…” She looked down and her voice
lowered a little. “I want them to be proud of me. Especially
Fly Father and Sun Father.”

“It just seems off to me, impossible to have a world that’s
completely utopian,” Lestat didn’t want to be a killjoy, but
such things simply didn’t exist to him. He couldn’t imagine a world
like Natsuhama being completely peaceful and free of conflict.

“I don’t want a utopia. I just want a world that’s as happy
and free of malice as possible,” Cambria knew that she
couldn’t have a world that was completely peaceful was a stupid
notion and only a pipe dream.

“That’s not plausible,” Lestat disagreed. “Murder
and crime in general are parts of life for all things mortal. Bad
things will happen no matter how much you try to manage it. Isn’t
that why gods and devils were made in the first place? To keep the
balance of good and evil?”

All things had purpose to Lestat, and the bad things that happened
were no exception. He had found that the darker matter of the world
mattered just as much as eternal peace. After all, without
something to threaten their way of existence, they wouldn’t have
such determination to protect it.

“Of course they were, but gods and devils can get along. That
is something I know for certain,” the goddess clenched her
fists to her bosom and gave him a determined smile.

After all, she and her devil were on very good terms. She knew more
than anything that if they two of them could do it, than others
could as well. After all, her two fathers were both the god and
devil of their world. Cambria had seen these things happen before,
and she knew that with faith and hope they could continue to happen
for all worlds.

“So do I,” Lestat replied, “You forget, we’re
alike in that aspect.”

“Yes, we are both the children of gods and devils,”
Cambria felt like she could relate to her bodyguard in those ways.
Both she and Lestat knew how it was to be the holder of both types
of blood and be something that was considered odd.

“Among other things,” that wasn’t their only
similarity.

“What would you become if you created your own world? Would
you be a god or a devil?” Cambria was actually pretty curious
about that. Since Lestat and she were born as Nephalim, they could
ultimately become one or the other. They were the only beings who
could ultimately decide their own destiny and didn’t have one that
was predetermined. Their freedom of choice was why they were set
apart from the others.

Lestat shut his eyes and frowned, “I have no desire to be
either. Look what happens to those who try and achieve happiness
through those positions.”

All of the gods and devils that he had ever known bore some kind of
anger, regret or sorrow over their positions. They all had
something terrible befall them in one form or another. Lestat had
decided long ago, that he didn’t want that type of responsibility,
nor did he think he could carry those types of burdens. Godhood
wasn’t for him.

“I think it can be done,” Cambria wanted to remain
hopeful about it all. “You can be a kind and benevolent
god.”

“Without consequences?” Lestat heavily questioned that
notion.

The goddess knew that her bodyguard was skeptical of her optimism.
She closed her golden eyes and frowned, furrowing her eyebrows.
Cambria knew that he only wanted what was best for her, and he
worried about the fact that she was such a kind and giving soul,
but she felt that there were things that he should be shown about
society.

“I know you don’t believe me but, I want to show you that I
can do it,” she at least wanted him to open his heart and
give her the chance to do so.

“I feel like you’ll regret that decision,” Lestat
opened his eyes and glanced towards the goddess. He wasn’t trying
to be mean on purpose. He genuinely felt that she was going to be
hurt by the harsh reality of the world.

“Do you think I’m stupid for this?” Cambria felt that
he might look down on her for her beliefs.

“Naieve,” that answer wasn’t exactly what she
wanted.

The goddess lowered her head even more, “because of what
happened to your parents, right?”

“That’s not all of it. Remember, you haven’t had the
experience that the others have. You’re still new at being a
god,” Lestat had been around for a long time. While he wasn’t
too much older than the winged-girl, he had a harder life than she
did. All she knew was the comfort of both of her father’s rules,
and the peace of Natsuhama. She rarely saw the horror of the world,
the macabre and terrible things that went on behind her back. With
him and Venetia around, she didn’t need to. They took on those
issues for her.

She was a very naive person to him, but in a way he liked that
about her. Such a pure and sweet girl needed the protection of
someone like him. In a way, he never wanted her to face the
tribulations that he had, because he knew that it would shatter
her. However, he knew that he couldn’t save her from such things
forever.

“I know,” Cambria sighed. She had a feeling that her
youth would be used against her. “That’s why I want to show
you that I can make the world I want and have it be successful. So
many worlds are sad or they’ve had bad things happen. I don’t want
Natsuhama to be like that. It’s the land of eternal
summer…” A small smile adorned her pink lips as
tranquil thoughts flooded back to her mind, “and summer is a
wonderful time…a truly wonderful time…”

“Kindness isn’t all it takes,” Lestat continued to
attempt to make his point. “You have to be strong and good at
making decisions. You have to be a leader.”

“You can be both,” Cambria humbly disagreed. Not all
gods needed to be boorish and brash. Violence wasn’t the only way
that disputes could be handled. She was certain that peaceful gods
could exist without corruption.

“There is no arguing with you, is there?” Lestat
glanced to her with defeat written on his face. It was subtle, but
he knew when to stop questioning his goddess’ methods. She was just
going to use the same circular reasoning on him.

This wasn’t an issue that he could make her see with words
alone.

“I want to make you see it most of all,” golden
eyes looked into an uncovered blue one. Cambria had meant those
words. The nephalim and his god exchanged a few moment of silence.
It was a moment in which mere movements spoke more than words ever
could.

Then it was disturbed by Rosario popping in between the two of
them. Cambria and Lestat had to bend back before they were nearly
knocked out from the rose bushes atop of Rosario’s head. The rose
demon greeted them with a `hello’ in sing-song. The two produced
expressions of shock and repulsion as they realized who it was.

“Rosario,” Lestat’s visage immediately twisted into one
of hatred.

“Now, now, I know I’m wonderful, but your staring is truly
flattering,” the flamboyant rose demon smiled and waved in
dismissal, ignoring his opposition’s face and waving in dismissal.
He flashed his best smile at the summer goddess.

“What are you doing here?” Lestat’s voice ran
cold. He hated when Rosario came around.

“What brings you to Natsuhama, Rosario?” Cambria closed
her eyes and leveled him with a kind smile, cocking her head
slightly.

“Well, besides the fact that you need me to cross-pollinate
the roses, I came to party!” The rose god winked playfully at
the goddess. “You always have a big party after we do this,
and do you know what would make the party better?”

“If you’d leave,” Lestat didn’t miss a note on giving
out what he thought was an appropriate opinion on the matter.

“Are you kidding? I am the party,” Rosario
gestured to himself and looked quite proud of his claims. He was
the god of fertility, roses and of festivity…Most
importantly, he was the god of liquor and his home world of Flora
was known for having the best liquor anyone could buy.

“I’d be honored to have you at my party,” Cambria had
been grateful to him for sharing his beautiful flowers with her
world. How could she refuse his request? Rosario had always been a
little eccentric, but he had never been mean towards her.

“Why are you encouraging him?” Lestat didn’t see why
she liked this guy, much less fed his huge ego.

“Because Rosario is helping me,” Cambria turned towards
her brooding friend, “Rosario always helps pollinate the
flowers of my world, and I go to Flora and help him,
too.”

It was something that the two of them always had done. They were at
lease with each other, and both had worlds of beautiful, blossoming
flowers. How could she not want to be kind to him? For eons,
Rosario was nothing but friendly, at times being a little
too friendly towards her. It wasn’t as if she didn’t know of
his flirtatious nature, however. As much as he hit on her, she was
always able to find a way out of her perverted grasp. She didn’t
see him as a bad person because of it. Cambria just figured such
things came with being the god of fertility.

All things had a purpose, Rosario included.

She felt a long arm wrap around her neck and pull her in. The
goddess could smell the scent of roses and strong cologne that
clung to the god. “We’re good friends,” Rosario told
Lestat. “Besides, did you know? The green rose is a symbol of
good luck and fertility.”

Rosario knew all there was to know about flowers and their
meanings. The ones that were dear to him had always been roses. He
knew the intricacies of every single one and could tell them all
apart. They were his children, something more precious than life
itself.

“You’d know about that. Fertilizing things is what
you’re good at,” Lestat deadpanned, glaring at how close he
was to his goddess. The nephalim didn’t like the rose demon
touching anything from his world, much less the goddess.

She was much too pure for his dirty hands.

“Damned right, I am,” the Rose God was proud of all he
had done. If he couldn’t fertilize things properly, then what good
was he?

“Green roses are real?” Cambria had heard of them
before, but she didn’t know that they truly existed. Every green
rose that she knew of had been fabricated.

“They are,” Rosario took his arm from her and opened
his palm, “a true oddity of nature.” Snake-like pieces
of green energy swirled around, materializing a green cluster of
leaves that unfurled and turned. It wasn’t like any rose that she
had ever seen. “They have an unsual anatomy in comparison to
other roses. Their blossoms are made entirely of sepals, which are
leaves that encircle the blossom of traditional rose plants.
Instead of petals, they merely just have overcrowded sepals. If
anyone ever sells you a rose with green petals, than it is more
than likely just dyed.”

The blossom in his hands diffused into green sparkles that rained
down over his palm. If only an illusion, he felt he had to show her
such a beautiful flower. Green roses were a special thing, even on
a world such as Flora.

Cambria’s eyes watched as the blossom dissolved in his hand. She
was in awe that such flowers grew naturally. “That’s really
interesting! There aren’t any green roses in Natsuhama.”

“There are many in Flora. I’ll show them to you when you come
and visit,” Rosario put his hand down. He would show her
whatever she wished to see in his home world…well, almost.
Every god had their secrets, after all.

“You should let me visit,” Lestat butted into their
conversation. Rosario had always let the goddess go, but would
never let him go. He had just as much right to go as she did.

“Don’t be silly,” Rosario nearly laughed upon hearing
such a request, “your kind isn’t welcomed to my
world.”

It would be beyond dangerous to let someone who wasn’t a deity onto
the rose-infested grounds of Flora. The both of them knew why he
wasn’t allowed to go there. There was really no sense in
entertaining him on the issue.

“I wonder why,” Lestat pressed the subject. He wanted
the Rose God to tell everyone the reason. If it was public
knowledge, then he wouldn’t mind saying it in public.

“It’s the rules,” there was no use in saying something
everyone knew. Rosario knew that very well.

“You’re a god. It’s not like you can’t make an
exception,” Lestat knew that he had that power. Rosario just
didn’t want to make him one. There was a reason that he kept him
from his mother, and he wanted the god to out it in front of
everyone in Natsuhama.

“But I don’t want to, so deal with it,” Rosario would
rather die than let him see her again. It would be a cold day in
hell before he did so.

A low growl came from the nephalim as his pointed teeth ground
together, “you son of a-“

His body tensed and he retracted himself for a moment, ready to
deliver a cruel blow to the pretty face of the floral god before he
was cut off by another resident of the world fluttering in and
landing between the two of them.

It was an anthromorphic moth. He was dressed in a white suit with
knee-high, white boots with boot covers. His coat had double-rows
of black buttons and under it, he wore a dark gray under shirt with
a black tie. Around his hips was a gray belt with a circular
belt-buckle that held a black sheath with silver tips.

This male was a Poodle Moth, which was notable by his fuzzy
antennae, massive amount of fur coming from his neck, and from his
wrists. White, powdery wings cascaded from his back and velvet skin
adorned his face. His hair was short and flipped out at the bottom
and he had piercing eyes with black sclera and white pupils.
Overall, he looked important and elegant.

“Did I…Pop in at a bad time?” The moth
questioned. The entire situation looked very tense, and he couldn’t
help but feel as if he should leave.

It didn’t help that everyone was now looking at him since he
decided to make his presence known.

“Iliya! Did you finish with your section?” Cambria
smiled, trying to break the awkward atmosphere her associates had
created.

“Yes, all of the flowers are pollinated in the area. I triple
checked to make sure,” the moth spoke in a young tone as
Rosario and Lestat glared each other down behind him. “Is
Rosario here to help us?”

“Yes, he is,” Cambria nodded. She was trying her best
to ignore the two of them, but it was clear that they were making
her uncomfortable.

“Well, let’s get started, shall we?” Rosario stopped
making eye contact with the nephalim and walked over to the Summer
Goddess. He would rather have made himself useful than put up with
Lestat, anyway. There were things that needed to be done. He
couldn’t just let the flowers wither and die, after all.

“Of course,” Cambria beamed and the small group
retreated to finish their jobs, leaving Lestat brooding beneath the
large shade tree.

The nephalim closed his eyes in irritation and relaxed his
shoulders as he released an exasperated sigh. In truth, he hated
that he was stuck in the state he was. More than anything, he
longed to see Rosario’s other half, but knew that it was nothing
more than a pipe dream at this rate.

Such notions made him feel the weight of a heavy burden. It was
like there was something missing in his life, something that he
knew that he could never get back as long as the circumstances were
as they were. It was all the Rose God’s fault.

Rosario had forbidden him to see her, or even visit Flora. He
couldn’t help but wonder why. Lestat couldn’t help but see his
actions as nefarious in nature.

When he opened his uncovered eye, he saw a shadow approaching him.
It was Venetia, the right-hand woman of his goddess. She was tall
and proud, with an athletic body. She was snow white, as he was.
Venetia had long, wavy hair and spiral, brown horns. Her skin was
fuzzy in texture, and she wore a long, brown coat trimmed in black
fur.

She was a goat demon with piercing, deep purple eyes. Beneath her
coat she adorned a maroon corset and matching business pants with
black, heeled boots. Her bangs were cut at an angle, which covered
one of her eyes, and she called a large, black hammer with her.

It was her prized weapon.

“So, he’s here,” her mature, monotone voice
sounded in his pointed ears.

“I hate it when that guy comes around,” Lestat knew
that she probably already knew his feelings on Rosario but he
couldn’t help but get his emotions out.

“Isn’t he related to you?” Venetia was merely
fact-checking, but Lestat didn’t want to be reminded of that
heritage.

Lestat sighed in irritation, “Don’t make me hate myself more
than I already do, Venetia.”

“He still won’t let you see her, will he?” She looked
to him, knowing the answer.

“He never will. He doesn’t allow her to leave Flora,”
Lestat closed his eyes, tilting his head down in defeat.

“What’s his reasoning?” Venetia was curious as to
whether or not he had ever asked about why Lestat wasn’t allowed to
see her, or why he couldn’t venture to Flora when everyone else on
Natsuhama could.

“That she’s too sick to leave, but I don’t believe him. I
think he just keeps her there against her will,” Lestat knew
that Rosario had been keeping the woman there. He didn’t believe
that her illness lasted for eons. What god was ill for eons?

“The sad thing is, we don’t know if that’s true. We haven’t
seen her in a long time,” Venetia didn’t want to say one way
or another. Rosario could have been telling the truth, but no
matter what, it was very sad.

Lestat gritted his teeth, “and we never will if he has his
way.”

Venetia placed a hand on his shoulder, trying to comfort him.
“I’m sorry, Lestat. This must be painful for you.”

“It’s painful for him, too,” Lestat knew that he wasn’t
the only one who suffered because of Rosario’s selfishness.

“He still loves her after all of this time, doesn’t
he?” Venetia could tell from the way Letat spoke of it, it
sounded as if the devil was suffering from this as well.

“He does, which fuels my hatred for that rose demon all the
more,” beneath his cape, Lestat’s fist clenched as his words
dripped with malice. One day that Rose God would pay for this. It
was all a matter of time before he paid for his actions.

XxXxXxXxXx

The flowers sparkled and shimmered, as the happy rays of the sun
blessed them with light. Everyone had worked hard to pollinate the
flowers, and they left no blossom without the necessities that it
needed to ensure that it would get the chance to repopulate the
world in the coming years.

Rosario’s pastel pink eyes gazed over all of the blossoms with
pride. There was nothing like a productive field of beautiful
flowers that made him beam with pride. A smile crossed his face as
he commented on their beauty.

In a nearby patch of flowers, a tall figure arose from the patch,
glittering with pollen that had been sprinkled on them moments
before. The dust clung to his brown clothing in tiny patches as he
tried to adjust his eyes to the garish light.

He was a tall man, dressed in monochrome brown, with short, messy
hair and two long antennae that hung from his head, curling at his
knees. Large eyes with thick, feminine lashes struggled to adjust
themselves as light brown hands with black claws scratched at the
mole below his lips. He wore a twin-tailed coat with a dark brown
half-cape that was held together with a tan bow.

The insect yawned lazily, being stirred from his slumber by the
cast of voices. He let out a yawn before sneezing at the pollen
that got up his nose.

“Ophir!” Golden eyes averted their attention to him.
Cambria didn’t get to see her cricket friend much. It was nice to
catch a glimpse of him.

“Cambria?” The sleepy insect inquired before rising to
his feet.

“Hello Ophir!” Rosario was quick to react on the
situation.

His greeting was short-lived as he felt a hand on the back of his
head. Before he had any chance to protest, Ophir’s head was forced
into the rough bark of a nearby tree. The force of the action
caused the bark to dig into his face with such fury that yellow
blood rose from his ruptured skin and waves of pain shot through
his form. Muffled noises of pain and irritation came from his
battered form.

“I know, you’re so happy to see me that you woke up for the
occasion! I feel so special!” Rosario chimed happily, holding
his head down and forcing it into the tree even more. Really, Ophir
was too much!

The cricket had to force himself away from the brutish rose demon’s
grasp. He rubbed his pained face, trying to rid himself of the
unsightly yellow substance. Irritation marred his visage as he
glared daggers into the Rose God.

“Well, I’m awake now,” Ophir’s tone was discomforted
and irritated.

“You know Ophir, it’s the time of year that we celebrate the
fertility of the land,” Rosario brought up his meaning for
being there.

“I’m aware of that,” Ophir struggled to come out of his
groggy state. “It’s something I can only appreciate at night
most of the time.”

Crickets were nocturnal, and most of the time he could only bask in
the glory of the beautiful night blossoms. Most of the flowers were
closed up at night. It was rare for him to be awake in the day time
at all. When he was it was usually because he had errands to run or
because he had slept far too much.

“I think I should give you incentive to appreciate it during
the day,” the Rose God pressed happily.

“Please don’t, my face can’t handle your incentive,”
Ophir would rather he not.

“Oh, that’s not what you have to worry about,” Rosario
winked playfully.

“Aren’t you with someone?” Ophir didn’t like the
direction this conversation was headed. Did Rosario really have to
hit on everyone he met? Could he not keep it in his pants?

“We’re in an open relationship. I’m technically with two
people,” the god was polygamous and had many lovers. Two of
them were the closest to him, and those were people he could call
his significant others. Many of his flings were merely just that.
It wasn’t like it mattered, he was certain that his lovers had
their flings as well.

“You should stick to those two people,” Ophir would
rather Rosario not act like a thirsty whore.

“It’s rude to turn down a god’s offer. You should be happy I
gave you such an invitation,” Rosario looked a little
offended. Why would someone turn him down? Was Ophir blind? He was
gorgeous, had an amazing body, and he was talented and attentive in
the bedroom. What was there to deny?

“I’m sorry we woke you up, Ophir,” Cambria bowed a
little in apology.

“I was fine until my face hit tree bark,” Ophir
complained.

“I command attention. Besides, you have to wake up. We’re
going to party.” The fact that anyone wanted to sleep instead
of celebrate was nothing short of blasphemy in Rosario’s eyes.
Parties and celebrations were a huge thing in Flora and everyone
attended.

“I’m tired. I don’t want to go to the party. I think I’ll
miss out for the day,” Ophir didn’t want to make his goddess
sad, but he really was tired. He felt like he hadn’t slept in ages,
and he had no motivation. Parties weren’t something he ever had
much interest in, and if Rosario was going to be there, he wanted
to go even less.

“You’re always asleep, Ophir,” Cambria looked worried
for the cricket. “Ever since you came to Natsuhama, all
you’ve done is sleep. I thought coming here would help you with
your problems.”

She hated seeing him sleep so much. It was a sign that he was
definitely depressed. In fact, Ophir never smiled much, never
sounded as if he were truly happy. It made Cambria sad, especially
because she wanted to help him so badly. It’s why she brought him
to live in her world.

“You shouldn’t worry about me, my goddess,” Ophir
didn’t mean to make her worry. He didn’t know how to battle his
depression.

“Are you still thinking about that devil? He’s not coming
back, you know,” Rosario’s words didn’t help. They only made
him feel the true futility of his situation. No one wanted to have
that shoved in their face.

“Say what you want, I’m still holding out for him,”
Ophir’s teeth clenched and his hands balled into fists as
determination crossed his face. He didn’t want to believe Rosario’s
words. “He’s not dead…he’s resting.”

“Why don’t you go and save him?” If Ophir was so
confident that the devil’s sleep wasn’t final, then he could go and
do something about it, right? Rosario wanted to see him try. He
dared Ophir to prove him wrong.

“You know I can’t do that,” Iliya thought it was unfair
that Rosario prod the cricket like that.

“Can’t he? Crimea is a terrible devil. Why does Beelzebub let
her have her way?” Honestly, the Rose God didn’t understand
that entire situation. Beelzebub was the devil king; surely he
could enforce the laws when it came to things like that.

“I don’t think he wants to be involved,” Cambria
replied sadly.

She didn’t blame him, either.

“Too bad, I really want Beelzebub to hand Crimea’s ass to
her,” Rosario would love to see that fight. He knew that the
fly devil could do it, too. More than anything, he wanted to see
her pay for what she did and how she screwed up everything.

“I would as well, then I could go back to Nocturna. When she
took over Solara, that made things hard on me,” Ophir closed
his eyes, tilting his head down in sorrow.

“Fallen angels shouldn’t have the ability to become
devils,” Rosario spoke those words before he realized how
little sense they made.

“Aren’t most of the devils fallen angels?” Iliya
corrected him.

“Not like her,” Rosario retorted, “she’s a
problem.”

“I’m with you on that,” Ophir agreed with him, for
once.

“At least our devil isn’t like her,” Iliya had only
heard things about Crimea, but judging from that she definitely
seemed like something that he didn’t want to deal with. She was a
devil worthy of her namesake. She seemed to have made a lot of
people miserable.

“Please, he’s no better,” Rosario didn’t know why Iliya
was complimenting Zion of all people. He found all devils
repulsive in their own ways. Zion might not have been on the level
that Crimea was, but he was terrible in his own right.

“Zion is a good devil. Don’t insult him,” Cambria
defended her devil. The two of them were friends. Rosario didn’t
need to talk badly of him.

“I don’t think Lady Rosalina would like you talking about him
like that. If for no one else, do it for her,” Ophir
encouraged to Rose God to stop shit talking Natsuhama’s devil. His
other half had an affinity for him, and Rosario needed to respect
her wishes at the very least.

“Who? She can’t really remember him. I don’t have to worry
about that,” he merely waved that issue away, just as he had
so many others before. Rosalina had memory problems. What she
didn’t remember didn’t really matter.

“You’re awful,” the cricket grumbled and narrowed his
eyes.

“Please everyone,” Cambria got between all of her
friends. “We should get ready to celebrate. Now isn’t the
time to fight. I want everyone to enjoy themselves and have
fun.”

Her friends didn’t really need to talk about the past with each
other, or even their current situations. It only made for bad
conversation between them. Cambria didn’t want the fertility
festival to be remembered in such a way. She wanted her friends to
all have fun and enjoy themselves. They could argue about trivial
matters later.

“Oh, I can definitely do that!” It was what
Rosario was best at, after all.

“Yes, my goddess,” Iliya agreed obediently.

As they were talking things out, Ophir tried to casually sneak off
from the conversation. In all honesty, he just wanted to go back to
sleep and found this an opportune time to drop from the festivities
without offending anyone or hurting their feelings.

However, his face met with the same tree bark and the familiar
pains were reawakened. He let out an `ack’ of pain and shock as the
smell of rose, blood and wood filled his senses.

Damn it.

The Rose God had caught him.

“Where do you think you’re going?” Rosario asked
in a mixture of happiness and irritation. Ophir wasn’t going to get
out of attending the party that easily.

“To sleep,” came the muffled reply.

“Oh no you don’t,” Rosario wasn’t about to let
that happen. “You’re going to come to the party via
my special request.”

The cricket backed away from the tree again, rubbing his face.
“Why do you want me there so bad?”

Of all of the people, it was really weird that Rosario was
so hell-bent on having him attend the party. He knew that parties
were a big part of the culture on Flora, but he didn’t think that
was quite the reason that Rosario wanted him around so much.
Surely, the Rose God had some kind of motive.

“Sleeping during a party is rude. I’ll get you drunk and
we’ll have a fun time,” Rosario got close to him, his voice
lowering into a seductive tone.

“I don’t like your definition of that,” Ophir knew
exactly where that was going, and he wanted no part of it.

“If it’s not too much trouble, I’d like it if you joined us.
I want to cheer you up. You’ve been so depressed since you came
here,” Cambria just wanted to help him. She thought a party
would be just the thing to get his mind off of everything that
happened to him in Nocturna. She really hoped that he would accept
her invitation.

“I know that you’re nocturnal but, I’d like it if you joined
us,” Iliya agreed with his goddess, “You do sleep an
awfully lot, Ophir. I don’t really think that’s normal…or
healthy.”

It was concerning, even to a fellow insect of the night. Iliya
didn’t want to seem like he was being pushy, but he was concerned
for his friend’s health.

“Hitting the hard liquor might do you good if you’re sobbing
about that guy,” Rosario tried to encourage him to get drunk
again. Drinking solved everything, right?

“I don’t trust anyone around you, much less with alcohol
involved,” Ophir wasn’t going to get drunk with
Rosario…or at all. Chances were if he even touched a liquor
bottle, the two of them would end up in some compromising position
that he’d regret later when he was sober.

“I should drag you to Flora where we have the best liquor.
It’ll really fuck you up,” Rosario flashed a mischievous
grin. Everyone loved the liquor from his world, and as they should.
He was the god of liquor, after all.

“No,” Ophir’s word was very strong.

“Your loss,” the Rose God cast a sly glance towards the
moth.

“N-No!” Iliya put out his arms and tilted his hands
from side-to-side nervously.

Rosario stuck out his bottom lip and pouted, “Bunch of
lightweights. Is Natsuhama the home of the no fun zone?” Why
was everyone so goody two-shoes about this? Life was about being
reckless and having a party! Why was everyone so stuffy and boring
here? “This world is more boring than Nocturna and no one
lives there but Beelzebub’s flies.”

“I’ll drink with you,” Cambria offered, earning her
squinting gazes of judgment from the insects around her. “I
won’t get drunk, I promise!” The goddess replied nervously.
Did they think she would play into the Rose God’s trap that easily?
They really had no faith in her! She was new at being a god, but
not new at knowing his intentions!

“Yep, no fun zone,” Rosario continued to frown.

“We don’t need any more children from you,” Iliya
wanted that the very least.

“Oh?” The Rose God then took on a sudden interest at
those words. “I didn’t know that was an issue. I can
always help you repopulate this place if you need to.”

It was surely a sad day when a world didn’t have enough people in
it. A sad day indeed. Rosario would make sure that the
fertilization festival had double meaning! A world full of children
of the gods was the best world. Not just any god, but the daughter
of the god of gods and the devil of devils! Surely, it would be a
great honor to Rosario to help in a time of need.

Not just that, but he was really good at having sex. He’d go as far
to say that was his greatest talent besides making things grow.

“W-What?” Cambria blushed and looked very uneasy.

“Stop,” Ophir would be damned if that happened. He
wasn’t going to let that creeper touch the Summer Goddess.

“You have a whole world full of children,” Iliya
reminded him that if he wanted to do something, he should just go
back to his own world and create for it. Natsuhama didn’t need nor
did they want his help.

“A world of me is the best world, excuse you,”
Rosario didn’t see what was so wrong about that. He was a god,
after all. Everyone needed more people like him.

“My goddess won’t be tempted by your tainted hands,”
Rosario heard a familiar voice cut in. It was feminine in nature
and cold to the touch. It even made him tense up a little.

The Rose God turned around to see the source of the voice and
smiled brightly at the figure.

“Ah, Venetia, how are you?”

…To Be Continued

Prologue
Festival Murder