The pressure of the moment was sure to cause irreparable harm.
All of those within the Mythic, those that were of a separate species from humans, were going extinct.
Technology paired with human paranoia was making it impossible for some to hunt, and even harder for others to simply live among them.
Witches weren’t passing on their lore the way they were meant to; the internet diluted the correct information until there were only a few with power left,
and they were desperate to keep the pool of power small until they found worthy witches. Finding them was a bigger challenge than one would think.
The younglings seem obsessed with instant gratification that sapped the witches of their collective power more quickly than they could replenish it from a dying Earth.
Nymphs were doing fine, according to some, but they weren’t able to produce any offspring--some supernatural virus that left everyone scratching their heads. They didn’t seem to mind, though.
Many simply shrugged and said two words: “birth control.”
Vampires were on the run from police when they made kills until they ended up going off-world to God knows where.
Their mystics were a mystery to many, including turned and forgotten vampires that were left behind.
Shapeshifters were simply living in their animal forms, hoping to be adopted by loving humans or roaming around the fields of Africa, protecting the parts of Earth they could.
Werewolves were starting over in the Highlands, in a pocket of forgotten land sealed off by one of the last uniquely powerful witches, Victoria Morgana Vienna, as a favor to her nephew,
For the handful of other species out there, it was more of the same; too many humans, not enough power.
Connor Ulster was the oldest hybrid and was about to be crowned King of the Mythicas as a desperate attempt to regain control over their numbers and garner more power by becoming one people.
While he was in no way the oldest of them, he was the oldest hybrid.
“Connor,” his aunt Victoria announced, “is going to be crowned King of the Mythicas.
Formerly half werewolf, half warlock, he will now be Cian, the ancient one, and he will now embody all of our characteristics. It has been decided.”
While a handful of Mythicas in the crowd huffed, the overwhelming majority seemed pleased with this part of the arrangement.
As King of the Mythicas, how could he rule over all if he wasn’t part of all of them?
Connor cleared his throat.
Victoria walked to the back of the smooth platform to approached the line of Mythicas--the strongest of each species available--to slice their wrists in an offering of blood that was
then poured into a delicate crystal cup. None of the warriors or warrioresses made any expression as Victoria sliced into their skin with her sterling silver knife.
It was decorated with jewels from crowns of ancient kings and queens and was able to transfer power like a smartphone charger.
By the time the crystal cup was filled with blood, each of their wrists were healed.
At the front of the platform was a bowl of opalite stone on top of a golden stand, ivy climbing the sides.
As she approached, a small hum of power thrummed around the bowl, like a halo of pearly and golden light that came off in waves, disappearing a few feet into the crowd.
She poured the blood into the bowl, then grasped the blade with her bare hand.
As she slid the knife out and blood began to trickle from her palm, the powerful light gave one final “BOOM” of power before everything stood still.
The Earth and everything on it held its breath as she whispered with muted words, “Qui facti sunt omnes, ut sit in nobis et nos.”
At that last word, the world seemed to move faster, as if catching its breath.
A split second later, the power emanating from the bowl slammed into Victoria, hitting her like a punch in the gut, and then spread out horizontally like a collapsing star.
Light exploded and blinded Connor for a moment. His nose and throat burned like it had during his first cigarette. He shielded his eyes.
As he slowly blinked them open, his vision slowly faded from a blinding white to pale colors. Victoria was standing upright, breathing calmly and peacefully as if nothing had happened.
He looked around, blinking the last of the colors back, and realized only a few others had reacted to the immense power. It can be invisible to some.
He quickly shook off any discomfort and stood with his hands behind his back.
He cleared his throat.
“King Connor,” Victoria said, scanning him for something. “Approach.”
Connor relaxed his arms at his sides and moved closer to her. As he stood facing the south, Victoria to his right, the crowd to his left, he looked at the horizon.
Intense hues softly painted the hidden sun. The clouds were wisps, like brush strokes.
His gaze softened and he inhaled slowly.
Connor held his breath for a moment; a soft, private moment.
His chest bowed as he proudly announced, “I, Connor Ulster, accept these powers on the condition of service to the Mythicas as a whole. I am bound to this oath in spirit and body.”
The crowd cheered and Victoria smiled at her nephew. Pride lit her green eyes and her raven hair blew in the wind.
“Well, then… you ready?” she said to Connor as the crowd continued to cheer.
He nodded and cleared his throat. The hairs on the back of his neck stood up.
A whisper in his mind told him that something momentous was about to happen. Heart thundering in his ears, his toes itched like they did before battle.
Of course something momentous was about to happen; he was going to gain all the powers of all the Mythicas.
Something that had only been attempted once before with perilous consequences: Selene, the 500-year-old dark witch had killed and stolen the blood of one of each species in the Mythics.
The spell had gone awry, tearing her apart as the power and darkness had flowed within her.
While many assumed she was dead, a few witches believed the soul could easily live without the body if it harnessed enough power.
Connor, on the other hand, was much older; approaching 1,400 years old. He was also given the blood freely, and there was no death involved. Both factors made for a much different spell.
As he reminded himself of these things, he looked at the crystal cup his aunt held up, filled with blood. Soon, this would be an appealing dinner for him. Or would it?
What was going to happen?
He took the cup and the crowd grew quiet.
Staring at it isn’t going to make it taste any better, Connor told himself.
He imagined his favorite mead back at home, shut his eyes, and started to chug.
Old, dirty pennies coated his mouth. That tickle in the back of his throat screamed to life. When he finished the cup, he handed it back to Victoria and cleared his throat.
He didn’t smile for fear his teeth would be red with blood.
“Your King!” she shouted.
Connor breathed in and out slowly, waiting for what was about to come.
Victoria patted his shoulder, looking relieved.
That whisper was growing louder.
Suddenly his vision wavered and his skin and muscles felt like they were bulging away from his bones. Acid burned in his veins.
Everything felt wrong, his body felt like it was melting from the inside out. He cried out in agony, unable to hold back.
“Connor!” Victoria shouted as he fell to the ground.
“What’s happening?” someone in the ground asked.
“He’s being torn apart!”
“The power is too much, even for him!”
“Give it a moment, maybe it’s just settling…”
He yelled out, thinking of his beautiful wife, Brianna.
I’ll be with you soon.