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Nena Camadera

Growing Pains

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Nena Camadera    51
Nena Camadera

It's the little things in life that make having a puppy so enjoyable.

 

I'll start working on that tomorrow, most likely, since I actually already had an idea for that in mind.  Again, it's going to be one that's a bit of a shocker.

 

I'll say this though:

 

ANSUZ: *Bleep* Yeah! It's a girl!  *Turns to her husband and flips him the bird* IN YOUR FACE TYR! KARMA'S A *BLEEP!*

BELLDANDY and KEIICHI: Wat.

ANSUZ: Just you wait. This is payback for all the grief you and your sisters gave me.

KEIICHI: I don't underst--

MEGUMI: Puberty.

KEIICHI: ...son of a *BLEEP*

KASEN: *crying, screaming, pooping*

BELLDANDY: What do I do?! What's wrong with her?? What is she crying for this time?! *panicking*

ANSUZ: DUCES Mother*bleep*ers! 'vanishes with a wave of the bird'

 

OH, AND LEST WE ALL FORGET KEIICHI'S FIRST EVER DAD JOKE.

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IdiAmeanDada    46
IdiAmeanDada

looks like fun.  Kason's first day of school would be fun as well.  :)

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Nena Camadera    51
Nena Camadera

Here's what I have right now for Kasen's arrival...it's gets super-nerdy for a moment, plus there's a reference to another book that deals with Gods walking among men.  I'll try and finish it by tonight,then move on to Kasen's first day of school.

 

New Arrival

“By Yggdrasil, she looks just like you Belldandy.”  For all the fact that Skuld kept her voice soft, she couldn’t hide the adoration that had so taken her.  The baby, asleep now, lay nestled up against her mother’s breasts, wrapped in a light blue blanket that the younger goddess somehow found fitting.  Though Kasen was still a tiny little thing, there was still a cow lick of almond-colored hair that hinted at her heritage.  The Norn bit her lip, looking up at her older sister, who was basking in the warm glow of motherhood.  “I didn’t know she’d be so small though!  Is she going to be alright?”

Belldandy nodded, leaning back in the large recliner Keima had bought them as a wedding gift.  Heavens, why had no one in Asgard ever thought to create something so cozy? 

Probably because if these existed in Asgard, no work would ever be accomplished.  Too many deities would be sleeping on the job.  Belldandy mused, before saying aloud, “She’s tiny, yes, but don’t worry.  Kasen’s weight is healthy and there was no complications through the birth.”

“Speak for yourself.” Keiichi murmured, leaning over from the back of the recliner and planting a kiss on his wife’s cheek.  “I don’t think I’ve ever heard you scream or curse so much in my life.”

Belldandy flushed and looked down to her newborne, and behind Keiichi came a gentle laugh.  “You might curse that on her father, Son-in-law.”  Though his eyes widened, Keiichi didn’t jump, and together husband and wife craned their neck back, watching as Ansuz, dressed not in a Valkyrie’s garb but in a more casual mortal’s attire, entered the room, baring with her a tray with a pot of tea and some sort of break Keiichi didn’t remember seeing in the cupboards.  “Her warrior’s blood awoke for the birth of her child, and may I say what a fight she put up!”  The woman’s bright gaze drifted to Keiichi’s right hand, which was wrapped in cast.  “Reminds me of the fight she gave me when I was in labor!”

Self-consciously, Keiichi hid the injured limb behind his back and away from his mother-in-law’s gaze.  Skuld snickered, and Belldandy flushed a bright pink.  “Mother!”  She hissed, terrified of waking her daughter.  “That was an accident!”

Ansuz raised a light brow, making her way over to the small coffee table that rested in the center of the room and setting her tray down.  The goddess beckoned to Skuld and Keiichi, and with an ever so slightly nervous look between the two of them, moved to sit on the couch perpendicular to Belldandy’s seat.  Ansuz handed the both of them cups of tea, but held back for Belldandy, neither of them willing to risk the peace of a sleeping newborn.  “Sweetie, you can deny it all you like, but your father was a war deity before he became Daitenkaicho.”  She snorted, “Just look at his choice in women!  One a demon named ‘battle’ itself, the other a fertility goddess who retired as a Valkyrie.”  The woman nodded sagely, “You don’t show it often, Dearheart, but you’ve got quite a ferocious streak.  It’s simply a matter of discovering what provokes you, and then stepping out of your way as you unleash holy terror on your enemies.”  She paused there, and her eyes once more drifted to Keiichi, who turned beet red.  “…or your husband.”

At this point, even Skuld was blushing.  “Mom, please don’t share dad’s love life with us. It’s embarrassing.”

Ansuz didn’t even bother with a look, her focus now centered on the dark, moist bread she’d brought with the tea.  “Oh hush Honey.  Just because you’re my only child yet to be laid doesn’t mean I’ll not be blunt when it comes to the ‘mysteries of womenhood’.”  Keiichi chocked on his tea and Skuld’s mouth fell open, staring at her mother in such horrified shock that even Belldandy had to wince. 

Yet the elder goddess took no notice of the children around her, instead ripping off a piece of bread and rolling it into a ball.  The end result looked more like a chocolate truffle rather than bread, and Ansuz centered her gaze on Belldandy.  “Open.”

Recognizing her mother’s tone of voice, the Norn did as bidden, allowing Ansuz to pop the lump of bread into her mouth without comment.  The taste was sour enough to make the hair rise on Belldandy’s arms, and her lips puckered Belldandy somehow swallowed the small piece, making a face when she saw her the ex-fertility goddess rolling another piece of bread. 

Ansuz scowled.  “Don’t make a face.”  She warned.  “You need to regain your strength-you’ve put your body through quite a bit of strain bringing your little one into the Assiah.” 

Knowing her mother was right and resigning herself to her fate, Belldandy obediently opened her mouth as the older woman moved another bread truffle to her mouth.  Skuld stared at the duo in curiosity.  “What do you mean?”  She asked.  “Belldandy looks fine to me.”

Ansuz nodded.  “And she is fine-now that the labor is done and over with.”  When she caught Keiichi staring, the woman smiled.  “It is a hard process to explain…”  Her smile turned furtive.  “Especially to a virgin goddess and a mortal…” the duo in question both broke into fresh blushes. “But I will do what I can.”

Rolling another piece of bread between her hands, Ansuz pursed her lips.  “Let me see…when a goddess descends to another dimension, she forms a body that links her to that physical plane.”  She looked at Keiichi, waited for his nod of understanding, and then continued.  “Yet it is a shell; a guise, if you will, that allows her to walk and interact with the inhabitants of that dimension.  Her true body is still that of a goddess, one of the Tenth Plane.”  Again Keiichi nodded, and impatiently Skuld twirled her finger, as though saying, yes, we know this, get to the point.

“Unfortunately, when such times happen where a goddess creates a relationship with a resident of the plane she is visiting, it essentially leaves her ‘stuck’ there, as you will.  The shell remains a shell unless a wish is made that makes her mortal, or such matters arise that allow her a more permanent solution to that remedy. Now normally, even if there is no permanent solution enacted, there are very rarely any negative results from it; the bodies we descend into are designed to last long and stay durable, just in case something happens that leaves us without a way to ascend.

“The problems arise when that goddess decides to progenerate.”  She looked at Belldandy expectantly, and with a sigh the Norn accepted the next ball of sour bread.  “When we descend, we come with only the basics to allow us to blend in.”  She paused from her ball rolling, this time looking directly at Keiichi.  “Forgive my blunt words, Son-in-law, but to simplify things…we do not eat or sleep or shit because the internal components that would require those functions are not a part of the initial design of the bodies we descend into.”

“But…” Keiichi’s mouth opened in protest, gesturing to Belldandy, who even now was swallowing and gagging on one of Ansuz’s bread balls.  Ansuz held up a finger, silencing the man before he could say anything further.

“Everything you see is an illusion, Keiichi. If you see us eat, it is to appear as you do, and what is ingested is instead converted to a form of fuel to allow the body to continue functioning.  But there is no digestive track.  She stared at him, all joking aside.  Skuld scooted away from him, and Keiichi felt himself begin to sweat.  “There is no internal nervous system no brain no organs that we use to process anything.”

“But you bleed.”  Keiichi was leaning forward now, a deep frown on his face at this new revelation.  “And you can die.  I’ve seen both.”  His expression darkened, and what Ansuz, indeed, what even Belldandy and Skuld saw on his face was I’ve seen horrors no man should ever see in his mortal life.  Don’t bullshit me.

Instead Ansuz nodded, finding a new-found respect for the man before her and whatever scars he bore on his conscious.  To have witnessed whatever darkness could have created such an expression, and yet still maintain a happy, working relationship with the woman at his side was a special man indeed.  Belldandy had chosen well.  “You’re right, we can bleed.”  She pointed to the side of the couch, where Ripley lay curled up in her more preferred form of an alien chestburster. “You could sic you’re tulpa on me right now, and I would bleed from its bites and scratches.  You could have it morph into whatever monstrosity I keep hearing unpleasant rumors about and have it tear me to shreds, and I would die.”

“Mother, please, don’t talk like that-“

“Mom, you’re starting to freak me out…”

Both daughters went ignored.  Not even Keiichi seemed to hear them, so wrapped up was he in Ansuz’s words.  “But that is because the attacks would pierce through the body I wear and to my true self.”  She gestured to herself.  “The ones you saw bleed…the one you saw die, Keiichi…it was because they were attacked by a being of a higher dimension, yes?”

Keiichi hesitated for a moment, then reluctantly nodded.  Ansuz nodded as well.  “And that is why.  These bodies are shells, yes, but even the toughest shell can be penetrated with the right weapon.  Were they of this dimension, were the weapons used of this plane…”  The goddess shook her head.  “Everything exists, yet is separate.  Do you understand?”

Keiichi took a moment to chew on the woman’s words, his expression unreadable.  “So the bodies you were are kind of like armor then.”  He started.  “Armor that protects you from everything that exists on the plane it’s a part of, but as soon as, say, magic is used against it…because it’s from a higher plane of existence…”

Ansuz nodded, and Keiichi frowned.  “But if that’s the case…if this is all…” he gestured to the three women around him, then looked to Kasen, who showed no signs of waking. “How...if it’s only ‘armor’, like you say, how…”

The goddess smiled, obviously pleased that her son-in-law was still with her.  “There was a Need.  One that was urgent enough to be felt on a subconscious level.”  Now she looked at Belldandy, who held her daughter just a bit closer to her bosom.  She stared at Ansuz in uncertainty, and with fading joy the elder goddess realized this was not something taught to goddesses tasked with descents.  The woman looked drawn and pale, and with a sigh the Valkyrie set aside the tray with bread.  “Belldandy,” She spoke gently, then looked to Skuld, who’d gone white as a sheet and was staring at her mother in terror.  “Skuld, both of you, relax.  This isn’t a bad thing.”  She sent a pointed look at Belldandy.  “And if it hadn’t happened, Kasen would not be resting in your arms right now.

“But you also must understand, Belldandy, that is why this last year has been so hard on you; your body was literally building what it needed to support a baby; a mortal baby, yet one born of a divine mother.”  The woman leaned over and gently rubbed her daugther’s arm, unsurprised to find the skin clammy to the touch.  “Kasen is of your blood, meaning that she is of a divine nature.  Yet like her father, her body is mortal.”  Ansuz pursed her lips, choosing her next words carefully.  “In a sense, you were twice-pregnant.  Once as a divinity, holding within you a mortal seed that would sprout a child and once again with a mortal womb that would allow such a child to pass into the Assiah.”

Keiichi held his head between his arms, leaning his elbows on his legs. “So what you’re saying is that Belldandy gave birth twice—at the same time.

Ansuz stared at her son-in-law with a warm smile.  “You’re a sharp young man, has anyone ever told you that, Keiichi?”

From where she sat on the couch, Skuld leaned back, running a hand through her hair.  “Holy shit.”  She whispered, then looked at her older sister with a rekindled awe and respect.  “No wonder you broke Keiichi’s hand.  I would have screamed bloody murder too.”  And then, in a quieter voice no one else was supposed to hear, “No way in hell am I falling for a mortal now.”

Ripley rose with a sudden hiss, causing Keiichi to stare down at the thoughtform.  Baring teeth that glared metallic in the light of the room, the creature slithered over to the man, twining up his leg and into his lap in a serpentine manner.  Skuld yelped, moving so swiftly to the other end of the couch she appeared to fly, and immediately Kasen came awake, startled by the alien noise before proceeding to bawl her lungs out. 

The cries were enough to rouse Belldandy from her stupor, and immediately the woman set about calming the infant.  Ansuz rose a single brow.  “Well if that isn’t a sure sign of your father’s arrival, I don’t know what is.”

Keiichi moved to rise, forcing Ripley to wrap itself around the man’s waist.  “I’ll go get him.”  He said, only to have his mother-in-law to shake her head.

“No, no. I’ll be the one to get him.  Heaven’s know he’ll do nothing but frighten the poor dear as soon as she sees his ugly mug.”  The woman glanced at Belldandy.  “Give Kasen to Keiichi, Sweetie.  He needs to learn how to soothe the youngling as well, and your father’s meeting will provide him with ample practice.”  She then looked to Skuld.  “Mind your sister and give her some tea.  Make sure she finishes the meal.  The ambrosia within it will help stabilize her body.”

No one could bother with a word of protest as the woman rose and departed, and sharing a knowing look with her sister, Belldandy offered Kasen to Keiichi with a somewhat embarrassed sigh.  Keiichi watched the woman depart, taking his daughter in his arms as Takano had shown him when his parents had stopped by to meet their grandchild.  That one had been a freaking cake walk compared to this insanity. 

At least Takano and Keima hadn’t spoken on super uncomfortable dimensional bullshit that Keiichi could barely understand.  Instead Keima had stopped by with a family friend’s truck, a crib and a rocking chair Keiichi vaguely remembered from his own childhood resting in the bed under a tarp.  Takano had brought bags filled to the point of overflowing with baby clothes and toys, and had gushed over Kasen before smothering Belldandy with attention.  It’d been all the more adorable, at least to Keiichi’s mind, in the sheer look of bewilderment that adorned his wife’s face.  Obviously Belldandy was used to being the one to hand out the affection, and being on the receiving end of it, especially when it had not been expected, had been a bit of an eye opener for the goddess.

Keima had proved much more reserved.  Though he hadn’t leapt away from her like a scared deer whenever Belldandy approached, Keima also didn’t offer a huge amount of congratulatory hugs and kisses either.  Yet he still showed her and Kasen both all the warmth he normally only reserved for the women in his family.  The smile that had come over him when he’d held Kasen for the first time had made him look twenty years younger, and Takano hadn’t stopped beaming during the entire visit.  They’d both stopped either Belldandy or Keiichi from preparing dinner that night, and Belldandy had been treated to an old-fashioned Morisato meal, one that Keiichi was surprised to find he’d come to miss in the years since leaving for college.

Shoot, even Megumi’s visit had been tame, and she’d had the gall to bring her latest flame with her, some tall American bastard who didn’t even have the decency to introduce himself by his real name.  Instead he’d introduced himself by the name of ‘Shadow’, claiming he was some sort of ex-patriot running around and seeing the world.  To Keiichi this translated to a man on the run; something about the foreigner’s baring screamed ‘convict’, and Megumi’s visit had grown surprisingly chilly after that.  When Shadow had then claimed he’d met Belldandy before, and that back then she’d had a ‘homely’ appearance, Keiichi had almost gotten into a fist fight with the man.

 

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Urd    46
Urd

Wow, you went super - nerdy there Nena!!

 

Were is the cursing, shocking, bitchy Ansuz?

Edited by Urd

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IdiAmeanDada    46
IdiAmeanDada

Tyr or Hild is what brings that out in her?  :)

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Nena Camadera    51
Nena Camadera

Okay, so after a bit of a wait, here's the next bit: New Arrival

It didnt' come out quite like I initially planned, but then again, things rarely do.  It should be a bit entertaining regardless.

 

New Arrival

“By Yggdrasil, she looks just like you Belldandy.”  For all the fact that Skuld kept her voice soft, she couldn’t hide the adoration that had so taken her.  The baby, asleep now, lay nestled up against her mother’s breasts, wrapped in a light blue blanket that the younger goddess somehow found fitting.  Though Kasen was still a tiny little thing, there was still a cow lick of almond-colored hair that hinted at her heritage.  The Norn bit her lip, looking up at her older sister, who was basking in the warm glow of motherhood.  “I didn’t know she’d be so small though!  Is she going to be alright?”

Belldandy nodded, leaning back in the large recliner Keima had bought them as a wedding gift.  Heavens, why had no one in Asgard ever thought to create something so cozy? 

Probably because if these existed in Asgard, no work would ever be accomplished.  Too many deities would be sleeping on the job.  Belldandy mused, before saying aloud, “She’s tiny, yes, but don’t worry.  Kasen’s weight is healthy and there was no complications through the birth.”

“Speak for yourself.” Keiichi murmured, leaning over from the back of the recliner and planting a kiss on his wife’s cheek.  “I don’t think I’ve ever heard you scream or curse so much in my life.”

Belldandy flushed and looked down to her newborne, and behind Keiichi came a gentle laugh.  “You might curse that on her father, Son-in-law.”  Though his eyes widened, Keiichi didn’t jump, and together husband and wife craned their neck back, watching as Ansuz, dressed not in a Valkyrie’s garb but in a more casual mortal’s attire, entered the room, baring with her a tray with a pot of tea and some sort of break Keiichi didn’t remember seeing in the cupboards.  “Her warrior’s blood awoke for the birth of her child, and may I say what a fight she put up!”  The woman’s bright gaze drifted to Keiichi’s right hand, which was wrapped in cast.  “Reminds me of the fight she gave me when I was in labor!”

Self-consciously, Keiichi hid the injured limb behind his back and away from his mother-in-law’s gaze.  Skuld snickered, and Belldandy flushed a bright pink.  “Mother!”  She hissed, terrified of waking her daughter.  “That was an accident!”

Ansuz raised a light brow, making her way over to the small coffee table that rested in the center of the room and setting her tray down.  The goddess beckoned to Skuld and Keiichi, and with an ever so slightly nervous look between the two of them, moved to sit on the couch perpendicular to Belldandy’s seat.  Ansuz handed the both of them cups of tea, but held back for Belldandy, neither of them willing to risk the peace of a sleeping newborn.  “Sweetie, you can deny it all you like, but your father was a war deity before he became Daitenkaicho.”  She snorted, “Just look at his choice in women!  One a demon named ‘battle’ itself, the other a fertility goddess who retired as a Valkyrie.”  The woman nodded sagely, “You don’t show it often, Dearheart, but you’ve got quite a ferocious streak.  It’s simply a matter of discovering what provokes you, and then stepping out of your way as you unleash holy terror on your enemies.”  She paused there, and her eyes once more drifted to Keiichi, who turned beet red.  “…or your husband.”

At this point, even Skuld was blushing.  “Mom, please don’t share dad’s love life with us. It’s embarrassing.”

Ansuz didn’t even bother with a look, her focus now centered on the dark, moist bread she’d brought with the tea.  “Oh hush Honey.  Just because you’re my only child yet to be laid doesn’t mean I’ll not be blunt when it comes to the ‘mysteries of womenhood’.”  Keiichi chocked on his tea and Skuld’s mouth fell open, staring at her mother in such horrified shock that even Belldandy had to wince. 

Yet the elder goddess took no notice of the children around her, instead ripping off a piece of bread and rolling it into a ball.  The end result looked more like a chocolate truffle rather than bread, and Ansuz centered her gaze on Belldandy.  “Open.”

Recognizing her mother’s tone of voice, the Norn did as bidden, allowing Ansuz to pop the lump of bread into her mouth without comment.  The taste was sour enough to make the hair rise on Belldandy’s arms, and her lips puckered Belldandy somehow swallowed the small piece, making a face when she saw her the ex-fertility goddess rolling another piece of bread. 

Ansuz scowled.  “Don’t make a face.”  She warned.  “You need to regain your strength-you’ve put your body through quite a bit of strain bringing your little one into the Assiah.” 

Knowing her mother was right and resigning herself to her fate, Belldandy obediently opened her mouth as the older woman moved another bread truffle to her mouth.  Skuld stared at the duo in curiosity.  “What do you mean?”  She asked.  “Belldandy looks fine to me.”

Ansuz nodded.  “And she is fine-now that the labor is done and over with.”  When she caught Keiichi staring, the woman smiled.  “It is a hard process to explain…”  Her smile turned furtive.  “Especially to a virgin goddess and a mortal…” the duo in question both broke into fresh blushes. “But I will do what I can.”

Rolling another piece of bread between her hands, Ansuz pursed her lips.  “Let me see…when a goddess descends to another dimension, she forms a body that links her to that physical plane.”  She looked at Keiichi, waited for his nod of understanding, and then continued.  “Yet it is a shell; a guise, if you will, that allows her to walk and interact with the inhabitants of that dimension.  Her true body is still that of a goddess, one of the Tenth Plane.”  Again Keiichi nodded, and impatiently Skuld twirled her finger, as though saying, yes, we know this, get to the point.

“Unfortunately, when such times happen where a goddess creates a relationship with a resident of the plane she is visiting, it essentially leaves her ‘stuck’ there, as you will.  The shell remains a shell unless a wish is made that makes her mortal, or such matters arise that allow her a more permanent solution to that remedy. Now normally, even if there is no permanent solution enacted, there are very rarely any negative results from it; the bodies we descend into are designed to last long and stay durable, just in case something happens that leaves us without a way to ascend.

“The problems arise when that goddess decides to progenerate.”  She looked at Belldandy expectantly, and with a sigh the Norn accepted the next ball of sour bread.  “When we descend, we come with only the basics to allow us to blend in.”  She paused from her ball rolling, this time looking directly at Keiichi.  “Forgive my blunt words, Son-in-law, but to simplify things…we do not eat or sleep or shit because the internal components that would require those functions are not a part of the initial design of the bodies we descend into.”

“But…” Keiichi’s mouth opened in protest, gesturing to Belldandy, who even now was swallowing and gagging on one of Ansuz’s bread balls.  Ansuz held up a finger, silencing the man before he could say anything further.

“Everything you see is an illusion, Keiichi. If you see us eat, it is to appear as you do, and what is ingested is instead converted to a form of fuel to allow the body to continue functioning.  But there is no digestive track.  She stared at him, all joking aside.  Skuld scooted away from him, and Keiichi felt himself begin to sweat.  “There is no internal nervous system no brain no organs that we use to process anything.”

“But you bleed.”  Keiichi was leaning forward now, a deep frown on his face at this new revelation.  “And you can die.  I’ve seen both.”  His expression darkened, and what Ansuz, indeed, what even Belldandy and Skuld saw on his face was I’ve seen horrors no man should ever see in his mortal life.  Don’t bullshit me.

Instead Ansuz nodded, finding a new-found respect for the man before her and whatever scars he bore on his conscious.  To have witnessed whatever darkness could have created such an expression, and yet still maintain a happy, working relationship with the woman at his side was a special man indeed.  Belldandy had chosen well.  “You’re right, we can bleed.”  She pointed to the side of the couch, where Ripley lay curled up in her more preferred form of an alien chestburster. “You could sic you’re tulpa on me right now, and I would bleed from its bites and scratches.  You could have it morph into whatever monstrosity I keep hearing unpleasant rumors about and have it tear me to shreds, and I would die.”

“Mother, please, don’t talk like that-“

“Mom, you’re starting to freak me out…”

Both daughters went ignored.  Not even Keiichi seemed to hear them, so wrapped up was he in Ansuz’s words.  “But that is because the attacks would pierce through the body I wear and to my true self.”  She gestured to herself.  “The ones you saw bleed…the one you saw die, Keiichi…it was because they were attacked by a being of a higher dimension, yes?”

Keiichi hesitated for a moment, then reluctantly nodded.  Ansuz nodded as well.  “And that is why.  These bodies are shells, yes, but even the toughest shell can be penetrated with the right weapon.  Were they of this dimension, were the weapons used of this plane…”  The goddess shook her head.  “Everything exists, yet is separate.  Do you understand?”

Keiichi took a moment to chew on the woman’s words, his expression unreadable.  “So the bodies you were are kind of like armor then.”  He started.  “Armor that protects you from everything that exists on the plane it’s a part of, but as soon as, say, magic is used against it…because it’s from a higher plane of existence…”

Ansuz nodded, and Keiichi frowned.  “But if that’s the case…if this is all…” he gestured to the three women around him, then looked to Kasen, who showed no signs of waking. “How...if it’s only ‘armor’, like you say, how…”

The goddess smiled, obviously pleased that her son-in-law was still with her.  “There was a Need.  One that was urgent enough to be felt on a subconscious level.”  Now she looked at Belldandy, who held her daughter just a bit closer to her bosom.  She stared at Ansuz in uncertainty, and with fading joy the elder goddess realized this was not something taught to goddesses tasked with descents.  The woman looked drawn and pale, and with a sigh the Valkyrie set aside the tray with bread.  “Belldandy,” She spoke gently, then looked to Skuld, who’d gone white as a sheet and was staring at her mother in terror.  “Skuld, both of you, relax.  This isn’t a bad thing.”  She sent a pointed look at Belldandy.  “And if it hadn’t happened, Kasen would not be resting in your arms right now.

“But you also must understand, Belldandy, that is why this last year has been so hard on you; your body was literally building what it needed to support a baby; a mortal baby, yet one born of a divine mother.”  The woman leaned over and gently rubbed her daugther’s arm, unsurprised to find the skin clammy to the touch.  “Kasen is of your blood, meaning that she is of a divine nature.  Yet like her father, her body is mortal.”  Ansuz pursed her lips, choosing her next words carefully.  “In a sense, you were twice-pregnant.  Once as a divinity, holding within you a mortal seed that would sprout a child and once again with a mortal womb that would allow such a child to pass into the Assiah.”

Keiichi held his head between his arms, leaning his elbows on his legs. “So what you’re saying is that Belldandy gave birth twice—at the same time.

Ansuz stared at her son-in-law with a warm smile.  “You’re a sharp young man, has anyone ever told you that, Keiichi?”

From where she sat on the couch, Skuld leaned back, running a hand through her hair.  “Holy shit.”  She whispered, then looked at her older sister with a rekindled awe and respect.  “No wonder you broke Keiichi’s hand.  I would have screamed bloody murder too.”  And then, in a quieter voice no one else was supposed to hear, “No way in hell am I falling for a mortal now.”

Ripley rose with a sudden hiss, causing Keiichi to stare down at the thoughtform.  Baring teeth that glared metallic in the light of the room, the creature slithered over to the man, twining up his leg and into his lap in a serpentine manner.  Skuld yelped, moving so swiftly to the other end of the couch she appeared to fly, and immediately Kasen came awake, startled by the alien noise before proceeding to bawl her lungs out. 

The cries were enough to rouse Belldandy from her stupor, and immediately the woman set about calming the infant.  Ansuz rose a single brow.  “Well if that isn’t a sure sign of your father’s arrival, I don’t know what is.”

Keiichi moved to rise, forcing Ripley to wrap itself around the man’s waist.  “I’ll go get him.”  He said, only to have his mother-in-law to shake her head.

“No, no. I’ll be the one to get him.  Heaven’s know he’ll do nothing but frighten the poor dear as soon as she sees his ugly mug.”  The woman glanced at Belldandy.  “Give Kasen to Keiichi, Sweetie.  He needs to learn how to soothe the youngling as well, and your father’s meeting will provide him with ample practice.”  She then looked to Skuld.  “Mind your sister and give her some tea.  Make sure she finishes the meal.  The ambrosia within it will help stabilize her body.”

No one could bother with a word of protest as the woman rose and departed, and sharing a knowing look with her sister, Belldandy offered Kasen to Keiichi with a somewhat embarrassed sigh.  Keiichi watched the woman depart, taking his daughter in his arms as Takano had shown him when his parents had stopped by to meet their grandchild.  That one had been a freaking cake walk compared to this insanity. 

At least Takano and Keima hadn’t spoken on super uncomfortable dimensional bullshit that Keiichi could barely understand.  Instead Keima had stopped by with a family friend’s truck, a crib and a rocking chair Keiichi vaguely remembered from his own childhood resting in the bed under a tarp.  Takano had brought bags filled to the point of overflowing with baby clothes and toys, and had gushed over Kasen before smothering Belldandy with attention.  It’d been all the more adorable, at least to Keiichi’s mind, in the sheer look of bewilderment that adorned his wife’s face.  Obviously Belldandy was used to being the one to hand out the affection, and being on the receiving end of it, especially when it had not been expected, had been a bit of an eye opener for the goddess.

Keima had proved much more reserved.  Though he hadn’t leapt away from her like a scared deer whenever Belldandy approached, Keima also didn’t offer a huge amount of congratulatory hugs and kisses either.  Yet he still showed her and Kasen both all the warmth he normally only reserved for the women in his family.  The smile that had come over him when he’d held Kasen for the first time had made him look twenty years younger, and Takano hadn’t stopped beaming during the entire visit.  They’d both stopped either Belldandy or Keiichi from preparing dinner that night, and Belldandy had been treated to an old-fashioned Morisato meal, one that Keiichi was surprised to find he’d come to miss in the years since leaving for college.

Shoot, even Megumi’s visit had been tame, and she’d had the gall to bring her latest flame with her, some tall American bastard who didn’t even have the decency to introduce himself by his real name.  Instead he’d introduced himself by the name of ‘Shadow’, an intimidating stranger built like Otaki, who’s only claim to fame seemed to slight-of-hand and a poor grasp of Japanese.  He claimed he was some sort of ex-patriot running around and seeing the world.  To Keiichi this translated to a man on the run; something about the foreigner’s bearing screamed ‘convict’, and Megumi’s visit had grown surprisingly chilly after that.  When Shadow had then claimed he’d met Belldandy before, and that back then she’d had a ‘homely’ appearance, Keiichi had almost gotten into a fist fight with the man.  Megumi had wisely ended their visit early after that, though she’d given him an earful over the phone when he’d called later that evening.

Kasen had ceased screaming now, though the babe was still fussing about in Keiichi’s arms, her face scrunched up so tightly she looked like a tiny old woman.  He smiled at the face, stroking Kasen’s cheek with one finger.  “One day you’re going to grow up and be a crazy old cat lady, you know that?”  He told her.  At the sound of her father’s voice, Kasen’s grimace lightened somewhat.  “You’ll be that old woman that does nothing but scream at kids to get off her lawn, then you’ll go back inside your house with your twenty cats.”  The man stole a glance at Belldandy and Skuld.  Skuld was snickering, not even trying to hide the fact that she was eavesdropping on Keiichi’s one-sided conversation. Belldandy’s face was twisted in a grimace as she tried to fight a smile through a face puckered from sour bread truffles.

Deciding his wife needed to get her mind off what they’d just discussed, Keiichi moved to Belldandy’s side, lightly swaying Kasen in his arms.  He held the babe up to peer at her mother.  “You see?  You already take after your mother, Kasen.  Both of you so salty a deer would come up to you just to lick your cheek!”  He cried.  Belldandy’s eyes widened, and the woman almost spat out the ball of bread she was chewing in her effort to hold in laughter.  Keiichi smirked. “At least now I know I’ll never have to chase away boys with a hand torch.”

Skuld looked at him strangely.  “A hand torch?”

Keiichi bounced Kasen gently in his arms.  “I…may or may not have…borrowed one of Keima’s glass blowing torches in my highschool years.”  He admitted.  “And I…might have chased a guy around campus who cheated on Megumi with it.”

Belldandy’s mouth fell open in shock, all but forgetting what bread still remand on her tongue.  “You did what?”

Keiichi pretended not to hear her.  Instead he held Kasen up next to his face and grabbed one of the babe’s hands.  With it, he pointed to Belldandy.  “See food!”  He chirped, causing Kasen to babble gleefully.

Skuld leaned forward in interest, her sister all but forgotten in light of this new revelation.  “You really did that?”  She asked.  “What were you going to do, light him on fire?”

Keiichi responded with nothing but a grin, and Belldandy held her hands up.  “Wait one moment, Mister.”  She said, and Keiichi’s smile grew larger.  “Are you really the Keiichi Morisato I fell in love with?”  She demanded.  “The same man who endured my sisters’ insane shenanigans day in and day out just so we could be together?”

In response Keiichi leaned over and pressed his lips against Belldandy’s.  Belldandy pressed her lips against his in response, and that was how Ansuz and Tyr found them when the two elder deities entered the living room.  Skuld, who’d stuck her tongue out in disgust at the display of affection, quickly went rigid.  “Oh you two, stop eating each other’s faces! You’ve got guests, remember?”  She smacked Keiichi lightly against the back of his head.  Keiichi deliberately ignored her. In fact, he deepened the kiss enough to cause Skuld to blush.

When he finally released his wife the man smacked his lips.  “That bread is really sour.”  He licked his lips, then looked up, apparently not at all surprised to find he’d gained a divine audience.  “What kind of bread is that?”

Ansuz stared at the couple with an especially smug look on her face, then tilted her head to the man beside her.  Tyr was watching them with a carefully neutral expression on his face.  Though Keiichi had met the Daitenkaicho once before through means of a Gate, this was the first time he’d actually had a chance to see the deity up close.  The god appeared older than he’d expected; crow’s feet traced the corners of his deep, blue eyes, and his face was aged with lines that ran deep against his skin.  His hair, long and black like Skuld’s, was lined with enough white that Keiichi dared call it ‘salt and pepper’.  Standing next to his wife as he was, one hand adorned in a glove, made Tyr look like Ansuz’s father.

Like you’ve got room to talk.  Keiichi reminded himself, straightening to stand beside Belldandy, Kasen gurgling happily in his arms. Don’t forget, Keima was no spring chicken when he hooked up with Takano.  The man nodded to his father-in-law, his arms too full of a baby who was trying to fit her fist in her mouth for him to properly greet the god.  “Thank you for coming,” He started, “we know it must have been difficult coming down here on such short notice.”

The Daitenkaicho nodded.  “It is good to see both my daughter and granddaughter are in good health.”  He said, approaching Belldandy and waving her down when she tried to stand.  “No, no, stay where you are.  Daitenkaicho I may be, but your mother lectured me enough before descending that I’m to cater to the new mother and not the other way around.”  He sent an amused glance to Ansuz, who returned it with a sly grin.  “Skuld, child, come here and give your father a hug. Yggdrassil knows I rarely see enough of you as it is.”

His permission given, Skuld leapt at the elder god in glee, falling into Tyr’s arms in an enthusiastic hug Keiichi normally saw reserved for Belldandy.  The Daitenkaicho lifted the youth off her feet, and when he placed her down again Skuld was beaming.  “We missed you, Papa.”

“I missed you girls too.” The man kissed Skuld on the forehead, then continued to Belldandy, granting her a warm smile before kissing her on the brow as well.”  “You’re recovering well?”  He looked at his daughter in concern, smiling as Belldandy nodded in turn.  “And it is true?  You crushed your husband’s hand?”

Belldandy flushed.  “It was an accident.”  She said for what felt like the twentieth time that day.

“She would have broken my arm had Kasen taken any longer.”  Keiichi added, grinning as Belldandy’s flush darkened further.

Tyr laughed at that, then pat Belldandy’s shoulder.  “That’s my girl!”  Belldandy covered her face with her hands now, and the blush had spread to her ears.  “Mayhaps not a warrior in the traditional meaning, but the blood flows true well enough.”  The man smiled widely, displaying white teeth against skin tanned from many a day under the sun.

Belldandy groaned beneath her hands and shook her head.

“Sweetie, stop embarrassing Belldandy and go see your granddaughter.”  Ansuz said offhandedly.  Skuld had come to stand beside her, and mother and daughter wore matching smiles that left little to wonder at the relation between the two. 

Tyr straightened, rubbing Belldandy’s shoulder affectionately with his un-gloved hand before turning to Keiichi.  Smiling slimly, Keiichi moved forward, Kasen staring with wide, brown eyes at the god who stood before them.  This close, Keiichi had to crane his neck back to stare at the man.  Tyr stood well over six feet tall and seemed to dwarf everyone in the room.  He had to stoop in order to get a good look at the babe, and when he did the god smiled.  It was a warm, gentle smile, one that lit up his face and made him seem twenty years younger.  “She’s beautiful.”  He offered the babe a finger to hold, and Kasen grabbed it greedily.  Her hand looked more like a doll’s against the digit, and for a brief moment Keiichi once more felt a breadth of awe fill his being.  When one’s spouse was a goddess, it was easy to take the divine for granted; gods and goddesses alike had become such a large part of his life that at some point, he’d stopped seeing their divine nature and had instead come to see nothing but the person beneath.

“May I hold her?” Tyr asked, sending Keiichi an earnest look.  Smiling, the man nodded before offering the babe to the Daitenkaicho.  The look of joy that came over the man’s face was palpable, and his smile so infectious that Keiichi found himself beaming as well.  “You’ll have your hands full with this one.”  Tyr said softly.  Kasen was reaching for a strand of his hair, and after grabbing a small fist full, proceeded to stuff it in her mouth before giving her grandfather a hairy smile.  “She’ll be a fierce one, just like her Aunt.”  He sent a glance to Skuld.  “Who holds a…similar interest in demons, though I can’t say if it’s good or bad.”

Keiichi stared at the man, startled at the sudden revelation, but Tyr didn’t seem to notice, his attention once more held captive by Kasen.  “Of course, given the state of Niflheim right now, that may not be such a bad thing. Especially if she has the opportunity to meet her other aunt.”  He frowned then, and the look that passed over the Daitenkaicho’s face was one that Keiichi didn’t recognize.  Would not recognize for years to come, until the day it happened to him. Then Tyr blinked, and the expression was gone, buried once more beneath the happiness of the moment.  The man rose Kasen up above his head, beaming at the child as the babe gurgled and squirmed in his arms.  “None the less, none the less!  He cried.  “Truly a fine daughter, isn’t that right, my dear?”  He asked the girl.  Kasen made a face, and Tyr laughed, completely missing the sudden look of alarm that flashed across both Belldandy’s and Keiichi’s faces.  “Why, she’ll grow up to be just like her—“

Kasen made another face, and this time what came with it was a heavy burp of bile.  Belldandy’s hands flew to her mouth in horror.  Keiichi froze in shock.  Skuld sucked in a sharp gasp as the puke flew.  And as the projectile vomit-vaguely milky in color and harboring a slightly acidic smell-splashed across the Daitenkaicho’s face, Ansuz burst out laughing.  For a long moment, no one but Kasen and Ansuz moved; Kasen, white vomit dribbling from her chin, squirming in her grandfather’s grasp looking close to crying, and Ansuz, howling with laughter in a witch’s cackle that could have passed for demonic.  Somewhere in the back of Keiichi’s mind, some side voice wondered at it. No wonder Hild and Ansuz got along. It certainly wasn’t because of their children.  Maybe mothers become sadistic as they grow older.  His eyes darted to Belldandy, who’d turned as white as a sheet, and the thought was destroyed. Nah.

“Oh, aye, she’s ‘er moder’s dotter alright!”  Ansuz howled.  The woman was laughing so hard she’d lost her breath.  Tears were streaming down her eyes.  “Aye, aye indeed, M’dear, M’lord!  Jus’ like ye’ sweet dotter!”

Grimacing, Keiichi silently retrieved his daughter from the Daitenkaicho’s hands.  Tyr didn’t move.  The man winced.  Some of the vomit had splashed into his father-in-law’s mouth.  “I’ll…go get some towels.”  And maybe some mouthwash, too.  He left the room in a rush, passing only Skuld, who was staring at her mother in something that could not be distinguished as shock or horror.

“Mama’s laughing so hard it brought out her accent.”  She whispered as he passed.  “The only time I’ve ever heard it was when Urd got Mama so angry she went raging through the Grand Council Hall after Papa.”

“Wonderful.”  Keiichi muttered.  Through the excitement that followed, Kasen began to cry.

~*~

“You’re sure you can’t stay longer?”  Belldandy stood beside her husband, staring at her mother with a certain kind of anxiousness that said, I feel it necessary to ask but I’d prefer you left. She sent a quick glance to Tyr, who’d not said a word in the time between holding Kasen, cleaning himself up, and then following the rest of the family outside for the retrieval Gate.  Though she didn’t say it out loud, her father’s silence was nerve-wracking, and the sooner he took his leave the better.

Ansuz blessed her with a smug smile, coming over and embracing her.  “I’m certain.” She assured.  As much as Skuld and I would like to, we both have our duties to attend to.”  Holding the Norn at arm’s length, the woman gave Belldandy a measured look.  “Don’t worry, you’ll be fine.  The chaos that comes with a newborn is part of the joys of motherhood.  One day you’ll look back on all this fondly…” She bent her head down to Belldandy’s ear, “And then use it as embarrassing material for when Kasen comes of age.”  The Valkyrie straightened and winked at her daughter, then retreated to stand next to Tyr.

Skuld was next.  “I should have put in for some vacation days.”  She said with a scowl.  “But I’ve got a new mentor for magic now, and she’s teaching me how I can literally flush Yggdrassil’s bugs out of its system, and it’s awesome because I never thought I could apply my magic like that and,” The girl bit her lip, the threw herself into Belldandy’s arms, hugging her tightly.  Belldandy returned it with the same bone crushing strength, feeling a strange sense of melancholy overcome her.  Time passes strangely. She thought. And time is soft between dimensions…when I see Skuld again, I wonder…will Kasen be a grown woman by then? Or will Kasen grow up with an aunt who never appears to age?

It was a strange thought, one that left her with thoughts of Urd, though for the life of her, Belldandy could not say why.  She kissed her sister’s brow.  “Mind your mentor and don’t drive her away.”  She said, and Skuld nodded in agreement.  “Keep in touch, too.  I want to hear how your training is progressing, okay?  You know I love hearing about your accomplishments.”

“I will.” Another tight hug, and then reluctantly the two sisters parted.  “I’ll make sure to visit you guys whenever I can, okay?”  Skuld said.  “And…if I…you know, here from Mara or Valu…” 

She said nothing more on the topic, yet Belldandy understood her nonetheless.  “Thank you.”  Her voice was soft; on this topic, neither of them wanted to draw their parents attention.  “I’m still hoping she’ll visit, you know…that she’s simply waiting for all the divinities to leave before dropping in to say hello in her usual flourish.”  The Norn sighed.  “But we shall see what we shall see, yes?”

“Yeah…” The girl looked wistfully out towards the front of the house, where the red tori stood above the stairs leading down the mountain.  “You take care of yourself, okay Sis?  You and Kasen both, and make sure Keiichi pitches in too!”  She moved to stand near Ansuz.  “And if he isn’t helping, just give me a call, and I’ll take care of him right quick!”

“I’ll be sure to let you know.”  Belldandy said in amusement.

Ansuz slung an arm around Tyr’s waist, causing the god to glare at her. Yet she ignored it, and together with Skuld waved their farewells.

A moment later came a flash of light, and the clearing was empty of all but Belldandy.

 

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Nena Camadera    51
Nena Camadera

I'll need to do some research on Japanese schools before I start on the next bit, since I want to try and make it as accurate as possible to the setting it takes place in.  Kasen's first day of school will probably be pre-school or kindergarten, depending on the age most kids start heading to school in Japan. Give me a day or two and then I'll see what I can spin up.  I know that Kasen won't be happy about it, and that Belldandy and Keiichi are both a little leery of it because it's Kasen, and she's already expressed her displeasure about it repeatedly to the point where they both think she's going to try something horrible at school.  And they aren't wrong, since more likely than not she's going to be sneaking a tulpa to school in her backpack or her pocket, maybe in the form of a hamster or something else.

 

Maybe she'll try and do like her Da and infect the whole school with tulpas that need to be exterminated.  Maybe she'll make a friend or two and decide against it. Who knows?

 

Also, there's a bit of a final ending for New Arrival that I'll try and post later after work.  I don't know how long it's going to be but it should provide a bit more insight into where Angel Biter as a whole is going.

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IdiAmeanDada    46
IdiAmeanDada

Ah yes, the ubiquitous spit up scene, still a classic.  Hence the reason you NEVER hold newborns up over your head!  He pretty much asked for it.  But now I wonder, is that going to be a theme?  Will an older Kasan get sick and puke on him again next time he visits? 

 

 

 

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Nena Camadera    51
Nena Camadera

I...honestly hadn't thought of that, but now that you mention it, it is a great idea...

 

All I can picture is a five year old Kasen being spun around by 'Grandpa Tyr' and then suddenly her eyes getting real wide and her face turning a bit green, and then Tyr, in fear of a repeat incident, suddenly just stopping (momentum notwithstanding) and releasing Kasen...

 

And Belldandy's horrified face as she watches her daughter sail into the sunset...

 

 

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Nena Camadera    51
Nena Camadera

And for a small addition to A New Arrival, a section I intentionally kept separate.

As soon as the gods finished their visit, the smile dropped from Belldandy’s face.  Slowly she turned, not towards the house but towards the tori Skuld had looked at before departing with their parents.  She’d known that look, had seen it many a time years before.  And while the Norn was already aware of who it could be—really, it was only a handful of people—still she concentrated, searching for that aura and latching onto it with the desperation of a drowning woman.  Assumption does not equate to certainty, she told herself, allowing her senses to tell her what her eyes did not; that there was a presence watching her from the tori, one that was only now allowing itself to be noticed.

She felt a nervous bud of excitement flutter in her chest as the stranger’s aura became more prevalent.  It’s a dark aura, of that I am certain.  She thought to herself.  And a powerful one, at that.  Yet if its purpose is hostile, it could have already struck me down from behind.  Not hostile, no…but that didn’t mean it was friendly, either.  Remember to stay on guard. Holy Bell whispered in her mind.  Even a demon you know is liable to jump if your back is turned.  It’s in their nature, and you’ve had experience with such attacks in the past.

Yes…yes, she had.  But now the stranger in question was dimming it’s cloak, and she could make out a form.  Another trill of excitement ran through her.  It’s female! And you know that aura, don’t fool yourself by saying you don’t!  You know this is no stranger!

Yes, but that would mean…The goddess bit her lip.  “You can drop the veil.”  She said, her voice clear and calm despite the excitement biting at the back of her throat.  “They’ve left.  I believe it was only Skuld who noticed you, something I assume was intentional on your part?”

The air shimmered around the being, and for a brief moment Belldandy felt something graze against her mind; a light touch, one that went almost unnoticed if not for the fact that Belldandy was waiting for it, searching for it as she had its aura.  Yes…she knew of only one demon with the ability to touch another’s mind like that, only one demon whose aura was the deep, royal violet of an Annunaki…and that demon was…

The demon’s veil dropped completely, and Belldandy’s jaw dropped.  “What the fuck?!”  She screamed.  What the hell are you doing here?”

The demon in question dropped to the ground, running a hand through her hair.  “Is good to see you, too, Verthanti.”  Said Marller.

For a long moment Belldandy stared agape at the blonde, who stood uncomfortably off to one side.  “You’re not my sister.”

“No.  Am Marller.  You know this, yes?”  Marller raised a golden brow—the one above her good eye, the left eye.  The other was masked by an eyepatch made of some sort of dark leather.

Belldandy stared at the demon in bewilderment.  “Yes but, I thought I felt…”  She trailed off as the demon gestured to herself, then grimaced.  “Ah, of course.”  The Norn finished lamely.  “In the passing years I’d forgotten.”  She sighed, staring at the woman before her dispassionately.  “So why did she send you?”  Belldandy finally asked.  “She knows we…do not get along.”

Marller shrugged. “Am messenger.”  She said.  “Trust no one else. Come with gifts from Daimakaicho.”  A look of displeasure came across her face. “And others.  Keiichi?”

The woman tilted her head to one side, staring at Belldandy in curiosity.  Yet the goddess held her stance.  “No…no, I think not.  Not until I know why you were really sent.  There are other demons that could have been trusted, Marller.  Demons that aren’t Urd’s right hand. Demon’s that aren’t political advisors who would suddenly be missed if they didn’t show.”  The Norn crossed her arms over her chest.  “Now, you will answer my questions truthfully or I’ll send you straight back to Niflheim myself.”  She flared her aura, a trick she’d learned from Urd in their childhood, to help drive in her point.  “Don’t think I won’t.”

Unfortunately if her threat had any effect on Marller, it didn’t show.  The demon rolled her eye instead.  “Keiichi.”  She repeated. “I no repeat.  Talk hard.”

Belldandy stared at the demon suspiciously.  “Keiichi is taking care of Kasen right now.  My daughter.  Urd’s NIECE! She wanted to scream, but held her tongue.  Getting into a fight with Marller would solve nothing, something both women were aware of. If anything, a part of her was willing to bed that the demon was itching for a fight.  You two used to be evenly matched, but that is no longer the case. Holy Bell reminded her.  You know what will happen if you challenge her.  Even if it is in the defense of Kasen and Keiichi, it will not end in your favor.

Oy!”

Belldandy started, blinking at the demon before her, who was rotating one of her hands in a manner that said can we get on with it?  The woman shook her head, running a hand through her brown hair. “I will call Keiichi out.”  She said at length.  “However, as Kasen’s mother, you do not have permission to enter the house and see her.”  She met the demon’s red eye, expecting Marller to challenge her, and only slightly surprised to find the demon bow her head in submission. 

“Mother knows. I follow.”  The demon stated, then placed a hand on her chest.  “Stay here.  Wait.  Keiichi?”  Once more she tilted her head to the side, and it was all Belldandy could do to hold in a sigh of relief. 

“Yes…I’ll go get him.”

~*~

Keiichi leaned back and pursed his lips, crossing his arms over his chest.  “So what you’re saying is,”  he said slowly, “that all of this is for us?  To help with Kasen?”  He stared down thoughtfully at the items that had been laid out in the inner courtyard, examining them with a critical eye.  A majority of them were potions; ones created by Urd herself, so Marller claimed, and safe for consumption by a babe with mixed origins or a goddess residing on the Assiah.  Some of them were smaller; boxes containing specialized teas from the native flora of Niflheim, black blankets of bicorn hair and a kuda pelt that, while soft, Keiichi could think of no use for.  Dried meats of creatures Keiichi vaguely remembered consuming in Niflheim, pickled eggs of Yggdrasil only knew what, and strange, red herbs that reminded Keiichi of poison ivy. 

Marller shifted her weight from one foot to the other, eying them both apprehensively.  En”  She grunted, shaking her head in disagreement.  “One more.”  This time she gestured to herself, causing both Keiichi and Belldandy to stare at the demon blankly.”

“…What is it?”  Keiichi finally stated, his blank stare not leaving when Marller thumped her palm against her forehead before gesturing to herself once more.

“Marller, you’re not telling us anything.”  Belldandy said.  “What are you saying? The clothes on your back? Is that your final gift?”  She shared a look with her husband, brows shooting up in confusion.  “Has she finally cracked?” The Norn mouthed to her husband, and Keiichi shrugged in response.

Marller huffed in annoyance. “Imma nustei, Imma shan.” She hissed.  See me, hear me.  Once more she gestured to herself.  Imma!”  She thumped her chest with a fist, once more causing the couple to stare at her, this time with surprise and a new understanding.

“Wait…” Belldandy held up one hand.  “You aren’t saying that you…Why in the Nine Worlds would…”  Dumbfounded, she stared at the woman, mouth agape.  Marller nodded rigidly, and Belldandy looked once more to Keiichi.  “Am I understanding her correctly?”  She asked, blue eyes wide with alarm.  “She’s…Keiichi, tell me Marller’s not saying that she’s the final gift!”

Keiichi’s mouth opened and closed several times, the words at the tip of his tongue refusing to be flung into the open.  The man finally closed his mouth, rubbing his temples as though they pained him.  The next words he spoke were Falkin, at a pace too fast for Belldandy to follow.  She looked to Marller, who was observing the man carefully and nodding occasionally.  When she responded in turn, the Falkin that came out was so fast and accented that even to Belldandy’s seasoned ears sounded little more that growls and hisses.

Finally Keiichi leaned back with a whistle, staring at the demon before him for a long moment before turning to Belldandy.  “I don’t know whether to be insulted or grateful.”  He said.  “Apparently Urd is afraid that something could happen to Kasen given some of the more…’zany’ things that happen around the shrine.” Like unwanted visits from gods, demons, and deceased underworld-dwelling relatives.  “So she decided to give Marller a vacation here on the Assiah…by playing ‘nanny’ for you and me.”  At the mention of ‘nanny’, Marller released a loud groan, and despite her dislikes for the woman, Belldandy found herself sympathizing with her.

“How long are you expected to stay?”  She asked, and got a half-hearted shrug in response. 

“A full year.” Keiichi replied, prompting another groan from the demon.  “A full—Urd, what the fuck.”  He hissed under his breath, ducking his head when Belldandy sent him a look.  “Sorry-it’s just…” He gestured to Marller with the same sullenness possessed by the demon, who frowned and shrugged helplessly.

“But why you?”  Belldandy blurted out.  “You’ve your duties as a counselor to  attend to.  Why in Yggdrasil’s name would she send you when you’re so needed back in Niflheim?”  She shook her head, flabbergasted.  “You don’t even have any—“ She stopped herself at the last minute, but not before seeing the hurt in the demon’s lone eye.

“Cousins.” The demon replied, sighing in aggravation.  “Raise cousins. Raise baby. Same.”  She paused for a moment, and then slowly said, “Urd…apologize no…not here.  This…this is…best…she do—can do.”  Marller pursed her lips.  “Keiichi Axu.”  She said.  “Urd axatu. You..is-are Urd’s alu.”  The woman shook her head.  “I no—I will not harm…your alu.”

For a long moment the duo stared at the demon, then Keiichi looked at Belldandy.  The Norn looked back, and shrugged, and waved an arm to her.  It’s your decision.  Keiichi and Marller were friends, despite Belldandy’s own dislike of the woman, but in this situation he was allowing the goddess to decide.  The brunette sighed, squeezing the bridge of her nose before looking at Marller.  The woman met her gaze easily enough, then spread her arms before her as though saying, I await your judgement.

The goddess bit her lip.  “You say that you won’t harm my family, but Marller…I need proof of that promise.”  Any trust that existed between the two of them had died in Niflheim, and while the two of them weren’t enemies, per say, any faith Belldandy had once held in Marller had been quashed long ago.  The Norn looked between Marller and Keiichi pensively, then said, “Would you submit to having your magic sealed?”

In response Marller held out her hand, palm up. For Belldandy.  There was no hesitation in the act, and when Belldandy met the woman’s gaze she found the same compliant obedience that was so often reserved for the Daimakaicho.  Belldandy held the woman’s one-eyed gaze for a brief eternity, uncertain of the demon’s honesty, then hesitantly grabbed the demon’s wrist with both hands.  There came a brief pulse of magic, the feel of something dark and hideous struggling in the back of her mind as the bounds were emplaced, and then Belldandy released the demon, shuddering as she did. 

A silver brand lay where Belldandy had held Marller’s wrist, encircling the limb completely with no signs of any give.  Marller rubbed it for a moment, examining it thoughtfully before let the limb drop with a sigh.  “Imma shilorrest, tsamarra Urd.”  She whispered, then looked between the couple.  “Is good?”

“Yeah.”  Keiichi said quietly.  His expression was unreadable. “Yeah, you’re good.”  He looked over at Belldandy, who nodded as well, her own face a strange mixture of startled, bemused, and somehow sickened.  “You’ll remove it when it’s time for her to leave, right?”

“Yes…of course.”  Belldandy looked pale, and her eyes didn’t leave Marller.  “I don’t—I won’t leave you in the same situation as Urd.  You have my word as a goddess.”  She straightened, a brief look of uncertainty flashing across her face.  It combined with a strange regret that didn’t fit Belldandy’s normally bright personality, and the woman opened her mouth, as if to say, I take it back, I’ll get rid of it now. But the moment passed too quickly, and instead the words spoken were, “Please, come inside.  We’ll need to set up a room for you.”

Silently Marller nodded, following in Belldandy’s tracks without another word as the two woman headed inside.  Keiichi watched them go, a frown on his face, then looked down to the various gifts the demon had brought them.  The longer I live, the deeper I sink into Urd’s shadow.  He sighed.  This was going to be a long, painful year.

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Urd    46
Urd

Sugoi, so many tasty stuff to read ^^

 

Found the "extended" version of Tyr meeting Kasen adoring =)

Your vision of their second encounter had me grinning ^^ Can almost picture Tyr whirling her around next to a clift (for photography purposes...really!) and then, like you said, she turning green and calling out to the Greg God and Tyr going all Songoku like and vush'ing before the vomit could hit him. And then there would be a baby dropping from the clift giggling, thinking how fun it was to fly.

 

And Keiichi peeing his pants and Belldandy having a heart attack and stumbling on her feets in her hurry to grab her kid ^^

 

And then, ofc, Tyr sitting on a chair, surrounded by women, having the talk of the day from both Belldandy and Ansuz on how NOT to treat a kid.

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Urd    46
Urd
11 hours ago, Nena Camadera said:

And for a small addition to A New Arrival, a section I intentionally kept separate.

 

 

 

  Hide contents

 

As soon as the gods finished their visit, the smile dropped from Belldandy’s face.  Slowly she turned, not towards the house but towards the tori Skuld had looked at before departing with their parents.  She’d known that look, had seen it many a time years before.  And while the Norn was already aware of who it could be—really, it was only a handful of people—still she concentrated, searching for that aura and latching onto it with the desperation of a drowning woman.  Assumption does not equate to certainty, she told herself, allowing her senses to tell her what her eyes did not; that there was a presence watching her from the tori, one that was only now allowing itself to be noticed.

 

 

She felt a nervous bud of excitement flutter in her chest as the stranger’s aura became more prevalent.  It’s a dark aura, of that I am certain.  She thought to herself.  And a powerful one, at that.  Yet if its purpose is hostile, it could have already struck me down from behind.  Not hostile, no…but that didn’t mean it was friendly, either.  Remember to stay on guard. Holy Bell whispered in her mind.  Even a demon you know is liable to jump if your back is turned.  It’s in their nature, and you’ve had experience with such attacks in the past.

 

 

Yes…yes, she had.  But now the stranger in question was dimming it’s cloak, and she could make out a form.  Another trill of excitement ran through her.  It’s female! And you know that aura, don’t fool yourself by saying you don’t!  You know this is no stranger!

 

 

Yes, but that would mean…The goddess bit her lip.  “You can drop the veil.”  She said, her voice clear and calm despite the excitement biting at the back of her throat.  “They’ve left.  I believe it was only Skuld who noticed you, something I assume was intentional on your part?”

 

 

The air shimmered around the being, and for a brief moment Belldandy felt something graze against her mind; a light touch, one that went almost unnoticed if not for the fact that Belldandy was waiting for it, searching for it as she had its aura.  Yes…she knew of only one demon with the ability to touch another’s mind like that, only one demon whose aura was the deep, royal violet of an Annunaki…and that demon was…

 

 

The demon’s veil dropped completely, and Belldandy’s jaw dropped.  “What the fuck?!”  She screamed.  What the hell are you doing here?”

 

 

The demon in question dropped to the ground, running a hand through her hair.  “Is good to see you, too, Verthanti.”  Said Marller.

 

 

For a long moment Belldandy stared agape at the blonde, who stood uncomfortably off to one side.  “You’re not my sister.”

 

 

“No.  Am Marller.  You know this, yes?”  Marller raised a golden brow—the one above her good eye, the left eye.  The other was masked by an eyepatch made of some sort of dark leather.

 

 

Belldandy stared at the demon in bewilderment.  “Yes but, I thought I felt…”  She trailed off as the demon gestured to herself, then grimaced.  “Ah, of course.”  The Norn finished lamely.  “In the passing years I’d forgotten.”  She sighed, staring at the woman before her dispassionately.  “So why did she send you?”  Belldandy finally asked.  “She knows we…do not get along.”

 

 

Marller shrugged. “Am messenger.”  She said.  “Trust no one else. Come with gifts from Daimakaicho.”  A look of displeasure came across her face. “And others.  Keiichi?”

 

 

The woman tilted her head to one side, staring at Belldandy in curiosity.  Yet the goddess held her stance.  “No…no, I think not.  Not until I know why you were really sent.  There are other demons that could have been trusted, Marller.  Demons that aren’t Urd’s right hand. Demon’s that aren’t political advisors who would suddenly be missed if they didn’t show.”  The Norn crossed her arms over her chest.  “Now, you will answer my questions truthfully or I’ll send you straight back to Niflheim myself.”  She flared her aura, a trick she’d learned from Urd in their childhood, to help drive in her point.  “Don’t think I won’t.”

 

 

Unfortunately if her threat had any effect on Marller, it didn’t show.  The demon rolled her eye instead.  “Keiichi.”  She repeated. “I no repeat.  Talk hard.”

 

 

Belldandy stared at the demon suspiciously.  “Keiichi is taking care of Kasen right now.  My daughter.  Urd’s NIECE! She wanted to scream, but held her tongue.  Getting into a fight with Marller would solve nothing, something both women were aware of. If anything, a part of her was willing to bed that the demon was itching for a fight.  You two used to be evenly matched, but that is no longer the case. Holy Bell reminded her.  You know what will happen if you challenge her.  Even if it is in the defense of Kasen and Keiichi, it will not end in your favor.

 

 

Oy!”

 

 

Belldandy started, blinking at the demon before her, who was rotating one of her hands in a manner that said can we get on with it?  The woman shook her head, running a hand through her brown hair. “I will call Keiichi out.”  She said at length.  “However, as Kasen’s mother, you do not have permission to enter the house and see her.”  She met the demon’s red eye, expecting Marller to challenge her, and only slightly surprised to find the demon bow her head in submission. 

 

 

“Mother knows. I follow.”  The demon stated, then placed a hand on her chest.  “Stay here.  Wait.  Keiichi?”  Once more she tilted her head to the side, and it was all Belldandy could do to hold in a sigh of relief. 

 

 

“Yes…I’ll go get him.”

 

 

~*~

 

 

Keiichi leaned back and pursed his lips, crossing his arms over his chest.  “So what you’re saying is,”  he said slowly, “that all of this is for us?  To help with Kasen?”  He stared down thoughtfully at the items that had been laid out in the inner courtyard, examining them with a critical eye.  A majority of them were potions; ones created by Urd herself, so Marller claimed, and safe for consumption by a babe with mixed origins or a goddess residing on the Assiah.  Some of them were smaller; boxes containing specialized teas from the native flora of Niflheim, black blankets of bicorn hair and a kuda pelt that, while soft, Keiichi could think of no use for.  Dried meats of creatures Keiichi vaguely remembered consuming in Niflheim, pickled eggs of Yggdrasil only knew what, and strange, red herbs that reminded Keiichi of poison ivy. 

 

 

Marller shifted her weight from one foot to the other, eying them both apprehensively.  En”  She grunted, shaking her head in disagreement.  “One more.”  This time she gestured to herself, causing both Keiichi and Belldandy to stare at the demon blankly.”

 

 

“…What is it?”  Keiichi finally stated, his blank stare not leaving when Marller thumped her palm against her forehead before gesturing to herself once more.

 

 

“Marller, you’re not telling us anything.”  Belldandy said.  “What are you saying? The clothes on your back? Is that your final gift?”  She shared a look with her husband, brows shooting up in confusion.  “Has she finally cracked?” The Norn mouthed to her husband, and Keiichi shrugged in response.

 

 

Marller huffed in annoyance. “Imma nustei, Imma shan.” She hissed.  See me, hear me.  Once more she gestured to herself.  Imma!”  She thumped her chest with a fist, once more causing the couple to stare at her, this time with surprise and a new understanding.

 

 

“Wait…” Belldandy held up one hand.  “You aren’t saying that you…Why in the Nine Worlds would…”  Dumbfounded, she stared at the woman, mouth agape.  Marller nodded rigidly, and Belldandy looked once more to Keiichi.  “Am I understanding her correctly?”  She asked, blue eyes wide with alarm.  “She’s…Keiichi, tell me Marller’s not saying that she’s the final gift!”

 

 

Keiichi’s mouth opened and closed several times, the words at the tip of his tongue refusing to be flung into the open.  The man finally closed his mouth, rubbing his temples as though they pained him.  The next words he spoke were Falkin, at a pace too fast for Belldandy to follow.  She looked to Marller, who was observing the man carefully and nodding occasionally.  When she responded in turn, the Falkin that came out was so fast and accented that even to Belldandy’s seasoned ears sounded little more that growls and hisses.

 

 

Finally Keiichi leaned back with a whistle, staring at the demon before him for a long moment before turning to Belldandy.  “I don’t know whether to be insulted or grateful.”  He said.  “Apparently Urd is afraid that something could happen to Kasen given some of the more…’zany’ things that happen around the shrine.” Like unwanted visits from gods, demons, and deceased underworld-dwelling relatives.  “So she decided to give Marller a vacation here on the Assiah…by playing ‘nanny’ for you and me.”  At the mention of ‘nanny’, Marller released a loud groan, and despite her dislikes for the woman, Belldandy found herself sympathizing with her.

 

 

“How long are you expected to stay?”  She asked, and got a half-hearted shrug in response. 

 

 

“A full year.” Keiichi replied, prompting another groan from the demon.  “A full—Urd, what the fuck.”  He hissed under his breath, ducking his head when Belldandy sent him a look.  “Sorry-it’s just…” He gestured to Marller with the same sullenness possessed by the demon, who frowned and shrugged helplessly.

 

 

“But why you?”  Belldandy blurted out.  “You’ve your duties as a counselor to  attend to.  Why in Yggdrasil’s name would she send you when you’re so needed back in Niflheim?”  She shook her head, flabbergasted.  “You don’t even have any—“ She stopped herself at the last minute, but not before seeing the hurt in the demon’s lone eye.

 

 

“Cousins.” The demon replied, sighing in aggravation.  “Raise cousins. Raise baby. Same.”  She paused for a moment, and then slowly said, “Urd…apologize no…not here.  This…this is…best…she do—can do.”  Marller pursed her lips.  “Keiichi Axu.”  She said.  “Urd axatu. You..is-are Urd’s alu.”  The woman shook her head.  “I no—I will not harm…your alu.”

 

 

For a long moment the duo stared at the demon, then Keiichi looked at Belldandy.  The Norn looked back, and shrugged, and waved an arm to her.  It’s your decision.  Keiichi and Marller were friends, despite Belldandy’s own dislike of the woman, but in this situation he was allowing the goddess to decide.  The brunette sighed, squeezing the bridge of her nose before looking at Marller.  The woman met her gaze easily enough, then spread her arms before her as though saying, I await your judgement.

 

 

The goddess bit her lip.  “You say that you won’t harm my family, but Marller…I need proof of that promise.”  Any trust that existed between the two of them had died in Niflheim, and while the two of them weren’t enemies, per say, any faith Belldandy had once held in Marller had been quashed long ago.  The Norn looked between Marller and Keiichi pensively, then said, “Would you submit to having your magic sealed?”

 

 

In response Marller held out her hand, palm up. For Belldandy.  There was no hesitation in the act, and when Belldandy met the woman’s gaze she found the same compliant obedience that was so often reserved for the Daimakaicho.  Belldandy held the woman’s one-eyed gaze for a brief eternity, uncertain of the demon’s honesty, then hesitantly grabbed the demon’s wrist with both hands.  There came a brief pulse of magic, the feel of something dark and hideous struggling in the back of her mind as the bounds were emplaced, and then Belldandy released the demon, shuddering as she did. 

 

 

A silver brand lay where Belldandy had held Marller’s wrist, encircling the limb completely with no signs of any give.  Marller rubbed it for a moment, examining it thoughtfully before let the limb drop with a sigh.  “Imma shilorrest, tsamarra Urd.”  She whispered, then looked between the couple.  “Is good?”

 

 

“Yeah.”  Keiichi said quietly.  His expression was unreadable. “Yeah, you’re good.”  He looked over at Belldandy, who nodded as well, her own face a strange mixture of startled, bemused, and somehow sickened.  “You’ll remove it when it’s time for her to leave, right?”

 

 

“Yes…of course.”  Belldandy looked pale, and her eyes didn’t leave Marller.  “I don’t—I won’t leave you in the same situation as Urd.  You have my word as a goddess.”  She straightened, a brief look of uncertainty flashing across her face.  It combined with a strange regret that didn’t fit Belldandy’s normally bright personality, and the woman opened her mouth, as if to say, I take it back, I’ll get rid of it now. But the moment passed too quickly, and instead the words spoken were, “Please, come inside.  We’ll need to set up a room for you.”

 

 

Silently Marller nodded, following in Belldandy’s tracks without another word as the two woman headed inside.  Keiichi watched them go, a frown on his face, then looked down to the various gifts the demon had brought them.  The longer I live, the deeper I sink into Urd’s shadow.  He sighed.  This was going to be a long, painful year.

 

 

Well well, what a small pearl we have here!

 

So much tasty info to be digested in such a short piece.

Where to start? Questions questions...

 

Has Mara Neshama and Ruach form had been separated for too long that she kinda lost her mind? Did she offered her eye to Mimir in order to find a "deeper knowledge" of the world, like Odin in the legends? Did she lost it in a brawl? Did she tore it out herself? Was she kidnapped and flaided alive like Theon?

 

And Urd is a meanie to not come meet her niece. I mean, she HAS to meet her at some point, right? Why can't the big meanie Damaikaicho drop down for a little visit? Hild did it all the time!

And also, why is Belldandy all of a sudden THAT much distrustfull at Mara? Isn't she the one wrecking Mara's love life in the near future? What did Mara do in response to that that left Belldandy reeling?

 

Loved the part where Keiichi understands Falkin better than Belldandy does. That's so fitting, somehow =)

 

And also, my falkin is a little bit rusted. I presume that:

Imma -> Me

Axu -> Friend

Alu -> Family

axatu -> boss? Nop, doesn't sound quite right, but can't find a meaning for it. Sister? Lover? Leader? No idea...

Imma shilorrest, tsamarra Urd -> i assume something along the lines of: You're going to owe me big time for this Urd.

Edited by Urd

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