“Yeah, you know…people sometimes think I just play dress up, but that’s not it. Back in the BC days, I didn’t have a word for it, but now? Genderfluid isn’t just one of my many gimmicks, you know?” I pause. “Don’t worry. I know you know. When a situation arises, and I need to be something I’m just…not… It hurts, and not in the fun way. Especially now that I know what it’s like to finally feel genuinely myself.”
“Hey, I’m just being honest, Philotes. You, Nemesis, and even Thanatos, who’s out there somewhere collecting these poor fools, have tried to get me to see some good in this miserable species and look. This is what they are. Burning each other alive for no good reason, not even a sacrifice to one of us or their own god… they worship the same god.”
“You see, I think we can help each other. Balance, right? That’s one of your big things. You’re order, I’m chaos, and I think we can balance each other out. I really need that right now, and frankly, my dear, and I mean this in the best possible way, I’m thinking so do you.” I emphasize this by tossing my boots over my shoulder and stretching my legs with my now bare feet.
They weren’t to blame for the false memories or for the hell I raised when I emerged from them. I licked my lips, squeezing my eyes shut in disgust. I’d raised a lot of hell and sown a lot of bloody Justice. Secretly, I’d hoped they’d show up, at least once, impressed by the mayhem I’d wrought.
That may even have been the first moment I bought into my own illusion because I wanted to believe it. I’d finally had a version of our relationship that worked for me. One that I could navigate successfully. I was never what you’d call mother/father/non-gendered parent of the millennia, but a partner in crime? That I could do, and so I did, for many years. Now that’s all over.
“Why not just finish this Enyo girl off?” Moros says with a wet hiss, handing me a dagger from the folds of his shroud. The blade on the weapon is formed from some kind of metallic-looking rock shimmering unnaturally in the light and becoming far too dark in the shade.
I hold it in my mind again that image of that woman, representing the downfall of the patriarchy, the very symbol in my mind of the status quo coming crashing down. Long black hair falling down her back, and a serpent around her shoulders as she laughs. The Ruin.
“As my partner has said, Mx. is my preferred honorific. It’s important to know who you’re addressing and also who is being addressed. I say this with the full weight in my heart that I am now addressing the great United States of America and the world at large as it’s first gender non-binary Senator!” A round of cheers and not a small amount of booing erupts.
I grabbed another drink from the shifty-looking butler as I made my way to the other side of the party. Derelict warehouse? Only one waiter? Whoever was in charge of throwing the event definitely sucked. It was like someone said gala, and they’d thought they meant apples, and still ended up bringing in Market Fresh.
Eris doubled over, cackling loudly, their energy and hunger pulsing out and dancing along my spine. I shivered for a moment, wondering if they’d heard the voice. Accepting that wasn’t possible, I allowed my mind to wonder…what would it taste like to pull their truth? What would I see? What would I learn?
Sometime during the rave, I’d realized exactly who I needed to call for help. It came as skin melded to skin, lips sucked lips, and I took in the vivid displays of dancing so frantic and chaotic it began to appear choreographed. There was beauty in chaos. The answer became clear, even without my brain consciously putting it together.
I need more mischief. I need to see the clash of Trojan and Greeks on the ground below us. I need to smell the blood and hear their cries. It’s always been this way around Eris, something I’ve always relished about their presence. They allow you to be your darkest self, the side you hide from the rest of the family.
“Goodbye, my Kallis!” I exclaim. She smiles at me with that same smile that always makes my heart soar. “We did a thing here today,” I hum to her. “Be proud of that,” I say with complete sincerity, as for once I’m even proud of myself.