“Get off me, dog,” Zyglavis growled, even as Mieke’s teeth broke the surface at his throat, but before he could spit another rumbling insult, Miho had firmly taken his chin, pressing lacquered fingernails into his skin.
“That dog,” she hissed, right against his lips though her eyes blazed fiercely into his, “is a hundred thousand times more loyal than the likes of you.”
“You think I wanted this?” he coughed out, falling still – and he ceased struggling, despite the blood dribbling down his neck. “I loved you!”
“I love her now,” Mieke snarled, snapping her teeth at his ear, but she paused when Miho straightened and stepped back.
“Tell me where I can find the King’s name,” Miho demanded, but she could not quite wipe the winded expression off her face.
“His name?” Zyglavis blinked, adding confusion to the mess of his emotions. “Why… why would something like that be in the archives?”
Miho’s arm swung limply to the rhythm of Mieke’s hurried steps. Depleted, having used the very limit of her power to suppress Zgylavis’ memory of the goddesses’ incursion, she clung to consciousness. Perhaps if she’d kept all the defeated Dark King’s power for her own she might have made a more dignified escape – perhaps she could even have punished Zyglavis in the way he truly deserved to be punished.
As it was, his reward would have to be inflicted upon him another day.
“I can hear you thinking,” Mieke told her softly, as they slipped from the Heavens. “There will be another way.”
“Yes,” Miho hissed weakly. “There is.”
“Has anyone ever told you, you have the most beautiful eyes, Yuka?” Miho smiled, the Planetarium lights flashing behind her.
The younger woman blushed, her body telling the tale of shyness and modesty, but Miho maintained her close proximity.
“Something sparkles, deep within them,” she continued softly, and though Yuka’s posture stiffened, she didn’t flinch away when the back of Miho’s fingers brushed against her cheek. “Something… I need.”
“Miho?” Yuko frowned in bewilderment.
“This won’t hurt you,” Miho whispered, leaning in, sliding her thumb to the girl’s lips, “but it will destroy my brother: your lover.”
“I’m going to take the zodiacs apart,” Miho declared, reaching through Yuka’s skin, through flesh and beyond though she left no mark – reaching into what she had once been, “and I’m going to use your stars to do it.”
The moment Scorpio’s palm slid under Miho’s blouse and touched against the flesh of her abdomen, his eyes widened in shock. He might have recoiled, but Miho snatched his wrist and held him to her.
Suddenly he knew her.
“I want you to see,” she crooned, sliding her index finger down his cheek slowly.
“Get off me!” he snapped, attempting to shove her back, but he found her by far more powerful than he remembered.
“You owe him, I understand that,” Miho declared, her lips twisting toward a sneer, “but I also know you’ve seen and felt the monster lurking behind that bastard’s luminous smile.”
“Revenge?” he snapped, but he’d seen as much in her thoughts – all of them from start to finish.
And he could not deny the King deserved it.
“But you can’t,” he scowled. “If you do…”
“… the pain, stops,” Miho filled in dryly. “The twisted, arrogant superiority complex that drives him, and the belief because he can, he is entitled to… ends.”
Her hazel eyes narrowed on his and reached forth with invisible claws.
“And you, the mortal made god, the stars he gifted you, will help me tear him down.”
“Chaos will…” he began, but her fingertip to his lips silenced him.
“Shhh,” she whispered gently. “This won’t hurt, and you won’t even remember.”
“How is this even possible?” Teorus questioned, a frown clinging to his pretty brow. “First Yuka, and now Scorpio?”
The aforementioned god, now effectively as powerless as a human once more, did not respond with his usual venom. He had no answer.
Yuka remained in Leon’s arms, arms flexed taught with anger though the young woman hadn’t really lost all that much in the grand scheme of her everyday life.
“Who would even dare?” he spat, glowering at Scorpio with sharp imperative. “Remember something.”
“Why don’t you ask your goldfish, you pathetic lion?” Scorpio retaliated, finally finding his tongue.
“Goldfish?” Leon repeated waspishly. “Look. Who’s. Talking.”
“Arguing like this isn’t going to solve this mystery, nor find the one responsible,” Zyglavis put in, ever the cool head.
“Maybe we should tell the King?” Ichthys offered, but he didn’t look as if he much liked the idea – probably because he was constantly getting into strife.
“Assuming he’s not responsible,” Dui put in.
“Would he really go that far?” Teorus frowned. “I mean he’s done some pretty dubious things but, Scorpio is like his favourite.”
“I wouldn’t put anything past that sadistic prick,” Scorpio grumbled, a statement much more like his usual self.