Apocalypse: wolf boy, war machine, seen in the eye of man, bane of Mother Earth, eternal as she is. Even the ground would not want him to rot in it.
With his four horsemen he has brought naught but hatred wherever he chooses to go. There are few who can prevent him from what he chooses.
Still, there are those who resist. Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter: the sister children of Mother Earth. Only the seasons oppose the four horse men.
Pestilence is opposed by spring as she grows where he infects. War is opposed by the warmth and play brought by Summer. The harvest brought by Autumn is the combat for famine.
Death and Winter are the most alike, and some wonder the difference, but still she fights on.
In the divine cycle began by Apocalypse and Mother Earth, Apocalypse seeded his horsemen. They were his secret weapon and where they went he was sure to follow.
The white horse, the red horse, the black horse, the pale horse, and the chariot bringing Apocalypse himself.
When Mother Earth was overwhelmed by these new weapons, she puffed up her cheek and spit out her own stars. The seasons were born, and to battle they went.
Mother Earth, may we ever sing her praises, was spent from the birth and thus she said to her stars “my daughters, I leave this battle to you. Forgive me for this curse.
Forgive me for believing in you.”
As she trailed off, to sleep she went, and the seasons were left to their own divine quest.
On the battle field they met the horsemen and Apocalypse but they were quickly overwhelmed without their mother. Apocalypse was too much for such young stars.
The sister stars retreated through towns and cities, gathering as much as they could carry and rallying as many people as there was time for. Mother Earth, blessed be she, slept on.
A man by the side of the road, blinded by infection, veteran of the divine war, worn thin by famine, and on the threshold of death, stopped the sister stars.
“You must gather the lamb,” he said, stepping forward and grasping at Winter’s sleeve, “only the lamb will be our salvation”
Winter shook him off, but Spring stepped forward and helped the man to his feet.
“What do you mean?” she asked.
“Sister,” hissed Winter, “Apocalypse is coming" she said in reference to the far off whiney of a horse.
The man refused Spring’s hand, “It is too late for me, Star” yet drawing a scroll from his robe he placed it in her hand, “take this forth. It is the answer.”
Spring nodded and her sisters beckoned her forth. The sound of hooves were growing closer and the crowd running along the road was becoming more and more discordant.
The sisters ran for days, through forests and rivers, down valleys and up mountains. When they came across a cave, they rested, hidden away in the dark. Spring unrolled the scroll and read it.
“The lamb is close,” she read, “but we passed it.”
“We cannot go back for it,” Summer said.
Autumn said, “We must. It is our only hope.”
“And if it is a trap then all will be lost,” Summer argued, eyes fiery with insistence.
The trio looked to Winter for answers. Winter thought of the man knelt by the road and all that had happened to him.
“The lamb is our only option.”
The next day the four prepared to go back to the valley of the lamb. Across Mother Earth’s stomach they ran until the sound of hooves could be heard.
The four shook with fear, yet still our blessed stars pressed on. They crested a hill and down the other side in the valley of the lamb, the four horsemen and Apocalypse could be seen.
Between the two parties the lamb was grazing as though nothing was wrong in the world.
Their only option was to fight.
“Together, sisters, we charge,” proclaimed Summer.
The other three nodded and as one unit, one family, they ran. The battle lasted only minutes.
The stars burned bright with their power yet the sisters were still no match for Apocalypse and his horsemen. One by one the sisters fell. War took Summer.
Famine blasted Autumn as she fell from the sky. As Spring was immobilized by infection, she saw that only Winter was left.
“The lamb,” she reminded Winter.
Winter looked on her left side and saw the lamb. As the horsemen turned to her, she turned to face them.
“Winter,” boomed Apocalypse’s voice, “You are like us. You are the barren, the death between life.”
Winter began to inch her way towards the lamb.
“It is you who is mistaken,” she said, “Winter still has life. Even when you cannot see it the roots of trees still grow. Just because someone is asleep does not make them dead.”
And Winter ran towards the lamb.
Apocalypse thrust out his hand and screamed “No!” but it was too late.
Winter wrapped her arms around the lamb and just as she did the lamb began to change into a tree, shooting upwards into the sky. All around the valley plants blossomed in rapid succession.
Roots entangled the horses and Apocalypse. Mother Earth was awake.
The sister stars rose as fruit dripped plentiful from the trees. Across the world people chanted “Terra, Terra, Terra” as Apocalypse sunk deeper into the roots of the tree.
Apocalypse was defeated.