Out From Olympus

See them, o reader mine, as they stride forth at last.

Dressed in white and gold, for their cowardly foe garb themselves in camouflage.

Singing hymns and psalms, for their heathen foe think man the lord of all creation.

Marching with solemn and stately grace, for their foe strikes with speed and stealth.

Bearing no weapons in their hands, for their eternal enemy puts their trust in technology.

See the Thousand Brides stride forth to conquer.  See the Army of Sunset stir at last, to bring an end to the Last War.

And, in their midst, see him.

See Zeus, Cloud Gatherer and Inheritor of Earth.  See Zeus, Warlord of Warlords, Slayer and Master of the Ruling Council.  See Zeus, whom She fears.

See him slight and unassuming, dark and subdued among the pageantry of his Brides.  See his brow, upon which sits the Diadem, signifying his rule of the majority of the human race.  See his raiment, thrice and thrice again blessed by all the Gods he can muster.  See his pockets, which hold a rabbit’s foot for luck, and folded paper maps of the trek for insurance.

See his mind, so much more cunning than Hers.  The mind which, upon overcoming the old Council, set his Pantheon to work destroying the last vestiges of the Old World among their territories.  Which turned schools into Processing Camps, which burned books and made temples of factories.

For it knows, this mind, that man’s science can never be its friend.  That one man may make a gun, and another man fire it, and thus combine their strengths.  It knows that this process has no natural limit, and thus its redoubtable strength may one day be challenged.  It knows that the Union maintains the environment which brought about Dr. Chen, and this mind’s greatest fear is that another of such surety of understanding may emerge.  It will know peace only when the last hard drive is shattered, the children taken from classrooms and pressed into its armies.

See him, the sole irreplaceable being who allows the Thousand to exist.  Only with an Ultra capable of slaying the Demon can so many, so mighty, gather as one.  Only under his aegis, the envelope of the Light Speed Kill, can they dare Her wrath.

See him doubt, if truth be told.  For so many years he has built up this Host, far beyond what is needful to destroy the puling Union.  He has done so for the coming struggle, against Her.  Stacking Ultra upon Ultra to increase the odds that one has a gift that will ensure victory.

See that Ultra never arrive.

See him march anyway, casting his empire’s fate upon the winds of a pair of gifts from fickle fate.  Psyche, child of destiny, whose gift will make the destruction of the Union, and of the Old World’s last remnant, entirely effortless.  And a report from his slaves in Shington, which claims that She has not left the Lair for a month.

He will dare his fate on such.  The Thousand march forth in the full panoply of their glory.  Their Pilgrimage comes late in the season, following on the footsteps of the Hosts that have gone before.  They will arrive as the summer dies.

See him stride forth to meet what destiny has in store for him, with the Thousand at his side.

See Zeus, and know despair.

15 thoughts on “Out From Olympus

  1. > Psyche, child of destiny, whose gift will make the destruction of the Union

    I hope Psyche’s power works on a veeeery long range, or that she is at least immune to bullets. Otherwise, she won’t survive long.

    We can see a difference right here between Prevailer and Zeus: Prevailer loves guns and is not afraid of them because she is invulnerable to them (and could teleport away even if she weren’t) and she has the Link, which protects those who aren’t. This means that her ost prozed assets are always protected agains a stray bullet. The problem is that this makes Her overconfident. Just see what happened to Linker/Snitcher.

      1. Isn’t that another Ultra that has already been named? And I don’t think Answerer is that good. After all, she has made Prevailer vulnerable by telling her she’s pregnant. Unless that’s her whole plan…

      2. @Ninmesara — Based on mentions “Prayeradox” and “In Which Our Heroine Encounters A Setback”, the Pantheon counterpart to Answerer is an Ultra called Circe.

        Psyche in mythology doesn’t have much to do with prediction, does she? I know the interlude calls this Ultra “child of Destiny”, but that might be getting at some different sort of fate/precog stuff than Answerer’s wide-ranging future sight.

  2. Seems like Zeus’s power is that he is very fast and very deadly. So… Is that a point in favor of my theory that he actually has Ultra speed like the Ultra from the third defiance?

    And is he vulnerable to Ultra speed? To a bullet fired by a drone? An ICBM? A nuke buried underground?

    1. Nah, if he had Speed 3, he’d probably have done the thing already and wouldn’t be as worried. Unless it actually *is* Slasher, and Slasher failed for reasons we haven’t thought of yet. It’s probably not, though; Slasher’s speed was so high he couldn’t even be seen, much less interact with the normal-speed world in a reasonable fashion such as to be able to control the Pantheon.

      I’m guessing his Light Speed Attack might be some kind of mighty lightning bolt power that can one-hit kill most Ultras. Possibly even an Ultra 4 blast, given he killed the old Fourth Fist, which means he’d have to have a means of killing their Anchor unit. Given the name, the attack itself is probably fast enough to hit before Prevailer’s Ultra Awareness has time to warn her so she can dodge. For whatever reason, he just hasn’t been in a position to be as certain as possible that he can win until now.

      All just predictions, of course. What do I know? 😛

      1. Crack theory about Slasher: during the day which Slasher took to murder Prevailer’s minions, her ultra awareness warned her. She then quickly wrote a message over her throne. Whatever its contents, it managed to turn Slasher to Her side. Slasher is her secret weapon. So secret that not even her inner circle knows he exists. If needed, he can even spy for her to replace Snitcher. He just doesn’t because he prefers to do his own thing.

        Slasher is Prevailer’s qeapon against Zeus. In fact, it’s her weapon agains the Pantheon. Should the Host come close enough, and their heads will roll. All hail Her! Force rules the world! Has ruled it! Will rule it!

        This theory makes no sense, but it’s so cool I have to leave it here xD

  3. And it’s a shame Zeus has decided to go after the Union first. He seems much easier to kill than Prevailer. On the other hand, God forbid Death manages to steal Prevailer’s gift as She dies xD That would be a disaster. I hope Zeus has the good sense of killing Death before killing Prevailer…

    1. I wonder if Death has a limit to what she can hold? If not, then she’s arguably the most Hax Ultra on the planet, and it’s a wonder she isn’t the head honcho of the Pantheon. Unless she’s just playing the long game as well, but lord knows if I was in her position, I’d be AMAZO-ing everything I could get ahold of.

      1. Also, if she decides to kill Zeus and fails to take his gift (we don’t know how reliable her capabilities are) they become vulnerable to Prevailer, which, as far as we know, can only be killed by Zeus.

  4. Sorry for spamming the comments, but I can’t stop thinking about how this looks like the fake propaganda that the Union feeds to the rest of the world about the Middle-Eastern Front. Zeus is probabky much more confident than it’s show here.

    They don’t march in an orderly way singing psalms: it’s the summer… They’ll soon be hot and dehidrated. They’ll be shedding the heavy tunics because of the heat and get sunburned. A bunch will die from dysentery from drinking soiled water. STDs will run rampant in the camp (the women probably share amongst themselves Zeus and the few men that acompany them). These are NOT classical superheroes: they are men and women with well circumscribed (and often useless for survival) gifts.

    They’ll get lost because you can’t plan an intercontinental migration using a couple small paper maps…

    This report is probably nothing but lies and propaganda. Zeus is using their elusive Ultra that can wrap space and allows instantaneous travel between two points.

    By marching like a Host, they risk suffering the same fate as them. How good is Zeus’ insta-kill move against a tank? And airplane? A drone? A swarm of drones? If it’s true that Death can plant a hook and wait for the victim to die, then probably she would have implanted it in the entire host and is waiting for them to perish due to enemy fire. Zeus included.

    1. I’m sure Walter appreciates the activity. It’s not like any one else is regularly commenting. 😛

      Anyway, this again makes me wonder if Death has a limit. If not, hooking a whole host would be an easy way to hyper-stack thousands of gifts in one season. Maybe gifts that are too similar don’t mix well (if she’s already got Strength, adding more strength won’t help), maybe taking on too many gifts will overcharge her power and have a negative backlash, maybe she has a set limit and absorbing any more past it causes older ones to drop off. Maybe she can only use one gift at a time and thus can’t just “stack” gifts making mass-absorption pointless, or her hook process is more complicated and time consuming than Haunters, so doesn’t actually have the opportunity to hook that many.

      1. Well, someone suggests that the Hosts are a sacrifice… And Death’s the ome rhnning the camps. Is this a scheme orchestrated by Death to get more powers? We are told that Death’a the one pressing for more aggressive actions

  5. ” It knows that this process has no natural limit, and thus its redoubtable strength may one day be challenged. ”
    Might want to reword this sentence. It took me a couple rereads to realize the second “it” refers to Zeus’s mind rather than the process of technological advancement.

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