Where The River Flows.... Picture

Continued from The Chosen [link]

Lacey awoke once again from what felt the longest of sleeps to find herself in her beautiful sanctuary that she used to only be able to visit in her dreams. It was so real to her now, the sun..the flowers..the breeze..and the crystal clear waters of the river.

Persephone had returned in voice to speak with Lacey one more time to explain to her what would happen to her to prepare her for her audience and then how she would get there. Cold and clinical she explained how Lacey would be given a temporary new body cloned from the blood sample removed from under the nails of the Wraith that had freed her soul from her flesh in the rehab centre.It would be purified of her diseases and chemical damage procured during her Human existence..mostly self inflicted..and thus be a more stronger version than her original flesh was..and would enable her to enter their realm where her monolithic form could not.Being from a Human sample though Persephone said apologetically their was nothing they could do about Lacey's offensive Homosapien stench.She seemed truly upset and sorry about it.

Once she merged with her new form she would awaken in her "dream sanctuary",replicated down to the finest details, where Lacey would await her transport which would dock at the pier they added along the river and from their take her from her plain of existence and through the different dimensional and reality plain barriers and gateways needed to pass through to reach Mother's universe. Once there Lacey would be subject to all physical realities and be at least temporarily in full existence and Persephone would meet her and escort her safely to Gaia's palace and inner sanctum.On the journey there though, no matter what threat or obstacle she may perceive to be possible of terminating her existence, she must not fear for no harm would possibly be allowed to befall her..though closing her eyes might sometimes be adviseable. As long as she stayed within the vessel all she truly had to do was lay back, see experience and feel the wonders and secrets and horrors very few have ever seen, and just enjoy the ride. Lacey remembered she really didn't like Persephone's tone when she said that last bit.

She stood up and felt the strength of her new body and looking at her reflection in the water saw she looked how she used..but healthier..before she ..well died and ended up here.She wondered why this did not upset or piss her off as it should..then thought of Brandon and this and everything else did not seem to matter.Not like her previous life was a joy..it was a nightmare blur of drugs, violence, prostitution, illness and depression, and then taken from the streets comatose and pregnant to rapid detox and rehab and weeks of moral and medical guidance under the numbing fog of anti-depressants under the watchful controlling eyes of Nuns and Doctors..and all at the ripe old age of nineteen. After that, and being here with Brandon, what could this screwed up dream world afterlife do to her that was any worse...she'd had her share of bad trips before..ain't nothing this place could do to her that could top her previous life. Nope, with Brandon safe in their new monolith Chosen body, she really had at this moment nothing to fear and would just lay back and enjoy the ride as Persephone said, meet "Mother",and see what happens after that..while they have Brandon there is nothing else she can do.

She heard a gentle lapping sound and a knock against the pier to the left of her and looked up to see her "ride".A gondola, if she remembered her short lived school years right, a boat of some kind popular milennia ago on Earth before the catastrophe that changed the world in a place called Venice. Very romantic apparently, and if they truly looked like this then she could see why. Beautiful white gold in colour, ornate and adorned with finery, and covered in symbols and runes, it shimmered ethereally in the spring sunlight. She ran onto the pier and saw that it was lined in crimson cushions and fine silks. She stepped aboard and layed down in a reclined position and felt like she was floating it was so comfortable. As if sensing this the gondola set sail once more and gradually picked up speed as it followed her river and showed her sights that she had yet to see and explore of her sanctuary. It truly was a natural paradise and she began to lose herself in wonder at all the life and beauty she never knew existed.It was not until she noticed a sudden turmoil in the river's normally tranquil waters and the gondola's sudden burst of speed that she looked directly ahead that a whole other valley existed far below her rolling hills and fields..far, far below. It was then it dawned on her that her river was not just a river, as it's boundaries widened and it's waters sped, and became a waterfall not to far ahead. She didn't have time to panic as suddenly restraints pulled her tight into the cushions as the gondola perched for a second teetering half over the edge before nosediving straight down the sheer thousands of feet high vertical drop. She screamed as they plummeted so fast she could see the land and river rushing up to greet them so close she could feel the spray from where the waterfall crashed into and fed the new river. She closed her eyes as the gondola plowed thunderously through the rivers surface then impossibly deep under it's waters and still in one piece began to arc levelling briefly whilst grazing the river's bed and then curving upwards again towards it's surface.

Miraculously not drowning nor dead..again..she dared open her eyes and as they broke the surface she saw water from the river racing upwards ahead of them, arcing to match the gondola's own path and disappearing into the clouds.She heard Persephone's words of reassurance that she should not fear echo through her mind and laughed..the bitch was actually telling the truth. She, even though she felt the water as she rushed through it, wasn't even wet. She realised as they sailed up the river to the fast approaching clouds that she could experience what she saw it truly could not affect or hurt her in anyway. Like a scary amusement park ride only so much friggin better! She felt alive, truly alive, for the first time in such a long time. As they shot through and above the clouds and began to break through the world of her sanctuary's atmosphere into the coldness of space she gave in to the sheer experience of it and layed back comfortable and calm. A rift in space opened before them in a silent explosion of colour at which she thought "..so pretty.." just before everything went white and they disappeared into it.

She regained consciousness a split second later as a new existence flooded into being before them. Literally a new existence as she saw the birth of a new star seemingly in slow motion though she could feel they were moving faster than before, and felt the pain of a new universe being born and felt like a goddess before another gateway, and everything turned white once more. Seemingly without end and without an inkling of time she experienced such sights,so many beings,chaos and serenity,horrors and delights,and emotional heights and lows that shattered her heart equally a billion times over.She did not think just experienced, felt and absorbed, one with oblivion and in ecstacy with life, and the only certainty her mind would allow to form thought was that she did not want this "ride" to ever end.Yet, as the vessel began to slow, she knew it must.

They exploded into the final reality before Gaia's realm, she didn't know how she knew she just felt it, and unlike the horrors witnessed along their rollercoaster of a journey this last reality was a nightmare..pure chaos.She was assailed emotionally with madness,vile twisted thoughts,base and carnal instincts and emotions.She witness in her minds eye every single heinous and sick thought and craving, saw every unthinkable act, and felt every victims pain horror and anguish.She cried out,unable to take anymore, the most harrowed sound full of fear anguish and deepest pain.It resounded around her and she clutched her ears as it seemed the realm itself was throwing her own sound of pain back at her to torture her.As the final rift began to form and the Gondola sailed towards it..all went quiet.This, though a relief, somehow scared her more. She willed the Gondola to go faster again but as it was almost upon the last rifts threshold it slowed right down to almost a snails pace and each seconds passing seemed like an agonising extension. The silence seemed to chill her to the bone and filled her with such dread..as though it was the sole embodiment of all the vile sickness she endured and suffered upon entry in this realm.She felt like she was being stalked by the ultimate evil and that any second now it would strike.Even when the gondola was entering the rift her fear did not ease. Suddenly it seemed everything stopped, like when someone pauses a song,and her body tensed painfully and her heart raced as if it was about to explode..then the slightest caress of air touched her right ear..like a breathe. She wanted to scream so bad but couldn't.She gasped suddenly as her heart felt like a hand had just closed around it and her entire body felt awash with crippling pain and diseased.Then her heart was released and the diseased feeling and pain vanished, she could even move slightly yet everything else still seemed suspended.Though she tried not to let them come, as she did not want to show the entity or souls here how vunerable and terrified she truly felt, but her tears fell regardless and she could not yet raise her hands to wipe them away.She could not hold back the sheer horror, violation and uncleanliness she felt deep down in the depths of her soul.

"Please..God help me !!!" She cried.She screamed as two hands grabbed the sides of her head and pinned her deep in the cushion lined deck of the gondola and a voice so low as almost a hideous growl as if lying directly next to her spoke into her left ear.

" No God here, no Persephone here,no Gaia..and definitely no Brandon. No one can help you here, no one has power here, no one can save you here." It spoke as if rage and depravity were barely being held back."We are this reality, we own this reality, we are ancient, we are powerful and we are legion..and we know you."The voice shuddered as if in the grip of orgasm and Lacey dry wretched.

" Please.." Lacey whispered.

" Let you go? Let you live? " It mocked her." But of course..Mother of "The Chosen One"..we shall do both because it suits us, because we have all Eternity to skewer every miniscule sliver of pain, torment, and sanity from your very soul..oh so sweetly slowly. We shall play, love, caress and worship your tainted soul again for we shall meet again for it is your destiny lost and devine one. Your spawn may be Gaia's Chosen, but you are ours, and though Gaia may not know it our paths walk the same line ..for now.So go to Gaia, aid in your son's destiny for in doing so you will be fulfilling your own and ours as well. Fly now our saviour.." she flinched as fetid breathe warmed her face and what felt like a tongue slithered across her forehead "..we love you."

She felt them withdraw and the deafening chaos returned to horrific normality, then disappeared in a flash of blinding white light as the gondola made the final jump. They reappeared into Gaia's existence and fresh clean smelling air and golden sunshine were the first things that greeted her. Waves of sensations ran through her body as it truly became fully alive and reactive with this reality..for though cloned from human flesh it felt it was home. Lacey felt safer instantly, a little calmer and cleaner, but she was emotionally tattered and torn.What was for the most part the most wonderous experience of her life had suddenly at the last second became a nigtmare leaving her feeling violated,confused,scared,furious, exhausted and lost.She lay against the cushions as rain water from the clouds formed another river that stretched ahead far into the distance, lightning flashing outwards from under it's surface,and winged creatures and birds changed course to avoid the once again speeding vessel.In a trance like state she saw wonderous sights of nature far below as well as things of fantasy surely both below and up in the skies with her.She took it all in with her eyes and mind and would surely never forget it, but her heart was numb and the joy and wonder she felt before was locked out at least for now.

She closed her eyes as they were about to fly over what appeared to be a bottomless canyon,stretching endlessly in both directions,splitting the otherwise beautiful landscape below in half.Hence she did not see the creature until her eyes flew open again as it's scream shattered the ornate bow of the gondola and the aft section she was in plumetted downwards towards the canyons yawning maw. The burning yet gorgeous creature glanced at her with minimal interest and continued soaring upwards. It was a Phoenix if her memory served her correctly. Typical..she'd always hated birds. She blacked out.

She awoke, very slowly,aching from head to toe and dizzy. Her legs were wet and she could hear lapping, like water sliding in and out at a beach shore..not that she'd ever been to one. Gradually she opened her eyes and for a second thought she had gone blind,but no, as her eyes began to reacclimate themselves she realised it was just very dark and foggy where she was. Where the hell was she? She remembered the canyon and then remembered the accident and the pheonix."Oh,this is just fucking great.."she thought"..fucking birds!!As if I haven't been through enough already a stupid mythological bird wrecks my ride and gets me lost. I must be cursed." She sighed and rolled over onto her back, to a chorus of twinges aches and sharp pains,though at least she felt like nothing was broken. A miracle in itself considering. She looked forward and in the middle of the black ocean whose water lapped at her legs she saw the remains of the once beautiful gondola slowly sinking."Terrific" she thought.She looked around and felt unease begin to raise it's ugly head once again. It was hard to see being so dark and the fog didn't help,but she could sense she was not alone, strange cries whispers and noises from close and afar confirmed it.

"Persephone!!!" She cried.She felt due to the telepathic conversations they'd shared and the fact that she would be looking for her by now if anyone could help her it would be her."Persephone!..I need help." No answer. "Where are you you bitch..you're supposed to be protecting me!"
She felt a tug on her leg and at the same time a croaky voice spoke to her.

"Ain't no Persephone here lovey...but if she's as pretty as you I hope she gets here real soon"

Lacey looked down at her leg and to her disgust as shrivelled old thing was grinning up at her and dragging itself from the water slowly up her leg, it had only its upper torso and arms, it's spine was a stub that it was also using for propulsion.It's lecherous pustulent eyes met hers and it licked it's sore riddled cracked lips obscenely.She pulled back her left leg and kicked the thing right in the face.Killing it..to her surprise with her six inch stiletto heel through the eye and into it's filthy brain.Serves the fucking pervert right.She couldn't believe however,as she noticed for the first time what she was actually wearing, that Persephone seriously thought this was funny.Hooker boots,leather mini, and leather corset..that bitch. Making fun of her past..she'll get hers..and besides..she wasn't a street walker for christ's sake..she was an Escort and a damned good one too..till that Senator and his wife screwed her over.Enough..no time to think about that shit, can't stay here,have to get moving and find a place safe to hide till the bitch actually does find her.

She got slowly to her feet achingly and knew she should really kick the boots off considering the terrain ,wet and muddy, but it was freezing and being thigh high boots they were keeping her legs warm.Despite her professional protest she had worn them before and knew how to run in them. At least they weren't bright red.She saw that the land behind her gradually rose up a hill and through the rolling fog and mist she could make out light and decided it was probably the best direction to head in..though she would keep to the shadows just in case.She took a deep breath and started slowly walking towards the light.With every step she was never alone.

Things,beings beyond her imagination, ran around her..stalked her..called out to or growled at her..she tried not to look..but sometimes it could not be helped.A baby headed fly kept dive bombing her face till she got lucky and stunned it with a backhand,a monstrous bile covered pile of pulsating flesh sprouted mouths on stalks and long reaching arms causing her to jump side step and weave her way around it.The worst,and there was some truly horrid things along this seemingly never ending trek,was the little boy who stood in the middle of the path trying to hold his maggot ridden insides in asking her if she was his mother..That one hit her heart. She pushed on though and became more and more aware of two things tracking her just in the dark treeline to her right. Sniffing, breathing, occasional padding of feet,and as she finally was beginning to reach the top of the deceptively high hill she now heard low growling.Tired,so tired and in pain, she decided to make one last ditch effort and run to the top and hope these strange lights held some safety.Another louder growl closer than before was all she needed and with all her heart she started running..and so did what was stalking her still in the treeline but keeping pace.Whatever it was it wasn't small.She ran harder and just before she peaked the hill a giant gelatinous slug-like creature slid in front of her and spoke.

"Quickly child.Jump on my back,bury your arms and legs in my flesh,and hold on." It spoke with what she imagined to be a kind old granny's voice.

" What..no..just let me pass." Lacey was thrown by the talking slug,it's voice,and understandably did not trust it and certainly didn't have time to argue with it." Please..I have to find some place to hide and quick"

" I know dear,I saw you crash. I'm impressed you made it this far." It truly sounded like some persons sweet old nana." But you won't find safety running into the light on foot..and you'll certainly die if you stay here. Please,I'm here to help, trust me and jump on quickly..there is no more time..and whatever you do don't turn around."

" It's behind me isn't it?" She knew because she could hear breathing behind her.

" Jump now !" the nana slug scalded her..and she did and buried her arms and legs into the slug's back as instructed.It felt as disgusting as she thought it would. "Hang on sweety..here we go" and Nana slug gew two giant hind legs and jumped into the light.Before they totally disappeared in it's embrace Lacey afforded herself a look back at what was chasing her and saw a six wolf heads on long knecks that looked like snakes attached to the body of a massive millipede lunging at them.The blinding light engulfed her and she heard howls of frustration.Then they burst through the otherside of the light,and she was no longer thigh and shoulder deep in a slug but one with some futuristic high powered motorbike and they were racing along a burning street lined with moving,screaming,figures who atarted to run after them. The bike sped up and headed for a blazing ramp up ahead, the burning figures still giving chase, others joining in from adjacent streets till all she could see in the bikes rear view mirrors was a see of running burning bodies.They shot up the ramp which was actually a burning bus laying angled on it's side on top of another truck and flew into the air into a burning eighth story office window and emerged the otherside high in the air..the bike now a dragon..soaring above a sea of writhing screaming tortured souls.Their despair and pain seared her soul. Thankfully it was short lived as the dragon flew into a waterfall of blood running down from the mouth of the head of a statue of some demon that was actually a towering temple,and emerged once again in thankfully a beautiful river in a sand swept land.Her dragon, or Nana as she thought of her wonderful saviour,was now a beautiful green and gold serpent.It glided up the river and the water felt wonderful splashing against her face.Lacey closed her eyes and rested her face against Nana's cool scales and just before exhaustion claimed her Nana spoke to her.

" Wakey wakey chile, no time for snoozing I'm afraid, we are here"

Lacey opened her eyes as Nana slid out of the river and morphed into a giraffe..faster than a camel she said and smell so much better.The sight that greeted Lacey was wonderous. A beautiful city,ancient yet intricately designed one and two storey buildings,immaculately kept gardens with fountains and pools,marble streets.All perfectly layed out,harmonious even..nothing like New Sydney or ugly pre-packaged MT Druitt,and all weaving around and leading to the city's grande majestic centrepiece. A stunning,beautifully ornate, golden pyramid standing at least one hundred stories high. It was magnificent to behold.

" Where are we?" Lacey asked Nana."Who lives here?"

" My dear we are in the land of the old gods,in the realm of one of the greatest gods ever to have walked your Earth.This is Thebes, this is Egypt created from our god's memories..or how he chooses to remember it."

" An Egyptian god lives here..sent you to save me?" Lacey was taken a little by surprise..understandably.

" Yes my dear..he saves all that fall from above.He cherish's all life." Nana said with pride." He saved me when those above cast me aside for being what I am, for being in their eyes "unworthy"."

" Because you can change forms? " Lacey asked in disbelief. "I would think that would be an ability welcomed as a wonderful asset in any society."

" Oh it was child, my race and ability was not the issue, it was my questioning nature." Nana looked directly at Lacey. " The old witch didn't like it when her children questioned her."

" The old witch ? You don't mean.." Nana cut Lacey off before she could say her name.

" Yes, the Big "G","Mother" as they call her.You were on your way to see her I take it?"

" Yes I was." Lacey answered.

" Then you've truly been saved child.Now hop off child we are here and he awaits anxiously to meet you and welcome you to hopefully what you'll come to call home."

" I don't know about that.Anyways..thank you so much for everything.I still don't even know your name.I'm Lacey."

" I'm Chyanne and it's been a pleasure Lacey.Hopefully we'll be able to spend time together if you choose to stay." Somehow Chyanne doubted she would..there was something different about this one." Now I must bid you farewell young Lacey for he awaits you.Just follow the main corridoor to the end and you shall find him there.Do not let his appearance frighten you, even gods eventually face the weathering of time in some form or another. He is fair and kind.Now go child,I hope to see you again soon." With that she changed into a leopard and was gone.

" Thank you.." Lacey called after her.She turned and faced the open towering doorway flanked by statues of what appeared to be Cobra headed guards..appeared to be until one pointed down the corridoor and gave her a look that said move it. "OK OK..I'm going." she laughed.Once inside the doorway disappeared and out of a side room stepped a beautiful girl dressed in finery and jewels.She looked Lacey up and down, shook her head and said "This will not do." She held her hand out to Lacey, gestured in a few wave like motions around Lacey,then smiled and waved her to keep going.Lacey looked down and saw she was now dressed like an Egyptian Queen,emerald silk flowing gown and enough jewels to buy an underground city back home.She was liking this guy more and more.She felt clean and smelt great too.She went to thank the girl but she had gone. She shrugged and continued walking down the long statues and tapestry lined corridoor admiring it's sheer beauty and extravagence.Eventually it led her to a enormous pillared hall, decked out in finery and art ofcourse, and at the end was a long dining table with meats,fruit and cheeses, and wine. The floor however was littered with snakes, all different kinds, and upon her approach they all reared up as one and stared directly at her.She froze.

"Please.." a strong yet kind voice came from the far end of the hall."Pay no heed to my friends they will not harm you they are merely curious is all.Please come in and take a seat. I've arranged some food and drink for you as I know after your ordeal you must be famished."

"Thank you." Lacey said and taking a leap of faith began walking quickly through the snakes towards the table and the still partially unlit area where the voice had come from.As she got closer she could see that it was actually a throne of some kind,huge and of course finely detailed,and their was a giant staff of some kind shaped like an upside down question mark and adorned with symbols. As she came to where she was to sit the area was bathed with light and the owner of the voice was revealed. He was at least nine feet tall..maybe more since he was sitting..and just the most impressive person she'd ever layed her eyes on. His presence was imposing to the point of being tangible, his face ancient and a little frightening..though she'd seen worse...his eyes powerful,intelligent and kind. Somehow they put her at ease.

" Please sit and eat young one and let my appearance frighten you not. I mean you no harm."

" Thank you..my lord?" Lacey knew not how to address a God and felt embarrassed.

" Please, do not feel embarassed as their is no need for such pompous formalities here in my home and kingdom. I am a God yes,but such ceremony and arrogance of worship is irrelevant to one as old as I now, only respect and the happiness and safety of those who dwell in my kingdom matter to me now.All are welcome here..unlike where you were headed.Though you may not think so your accident was indeed a blessing in disguise.I'm pleased Chyanne was able to reach you in time though,The Underworld is no place for a young lady like yourself, though I suspect you are no ordinary lady.Your scent..is one I have not smelt in millions of years."

Lacey felt her face go crimson."I'm sorry.."she started.

" Forgive me child for I did not mean to embarass you with my old mans thinking out loud.It is I who am being rude." He spoke genuinely putting her at ease once more." It's just that it's been such a terribly long time since I've smelt the scent of a living human being.We see humans here from time to time, and many live here, yet they are human only in soul not form.You are the first in my recollection to actually enter this realm truly alive both in soul and living human flesh."

"It was grown for me by G.." Lacey started to explain when all the snakes reared once again.

" Please again I must apologise and assure your safety.." he gestured with his hand and the snakes settled once more."..it's just that they like myself detest she whose name you were innocently about to speak and therefore do not utter it here. Chyanne should have told you but worry not there is no offense or harm done."

"If I may be so bold and I'm sorry if my ignorance causes offense but Chyanne failed also to tell me your name.Forgive me please I don't mean to be rude after all you have done for me." Lacey looked at him and half expected to be struck down by lightning..but again he surprised her with gentleness." I'm Lacey" she added timidly.

" Again it is I who have been rude young Lacey.Old vanity I'm afraid.Though my life has been documented and retold in both my homelands native writings and art as well over time in many languages I forget that I must look so different now than I did then.Plus though we had truly fine artists their depictions were more idealised and symbolic than true portraits.I must look so different it's no wonder you do not recognise me from your history tomes."

"I'm known by many names but you may know me by my true name.I am Seth"


Seth was drawn with a Artline Drawing System 0.1 pen and many hours of love and care. Hope you all enjoyed meeting Seth and the latest chapter in Lacey's ongoing saga. Thanks for viewing and reading
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