Slight smoke. No pain, which might be a good thing. It’s cold, and I think I’m on some kind of stone slab. I appear to be naked. It’s a… temple? I’m on some raised pedestal in the middle a giant stone roo-
“Have You returned to us, O Majestic One?”
I try not to act surprised as I look around and see a bald man in elaborate purple robes kneeling before me. A tiny winged creature kneels next to him, mirroring his position.
“Is that a monkey?” I ask.
“Your keen senses betray the truth, O Flayer Of Flesh. I am pleased that the power of speech has returned to You. Do You hunger, O Many Limbed One?” The monkey scampers out while he speaks.
“Yeah, I guess,” I say. “And sit up, man. Look me in the eye, it’s hard to talk to the top of someone’s head.”
“I- I apologize, O One Of Many Forms,” he hesitates a few times before he raises his head to look at me. His eyes are all black. Freaky is as freaky does.
“Good, good. You can stand up like a big boy. I ain’t gonna bite.”
He stands up at the base of the stairs that lead up to… uh… my pedestal. He bows and nods several times as he does so. The monkey thing returns and stands next to the bald dude. Trailing behind it is a young woman, naked, pretty, head bowed. She doesn’t have the supplicant thing down to an art as well as Mister Clean, she keeps looking up at me but quickly looking away. Silver eyes. I lower my balls from my body. This slab is cold.
“I have arranged for Your favorite feast, O Mighty Phantom Of Truth,” Baldie says as he nods toward the young woman.
It takes a moment for what he’s said to sink in.
“I… uh. I don’t think I’ll be…”
Baldie quickly returns back into a kneeling position: “I am nothing but apologies, O Deliverer Of Peoples. I shall accept any punishment that is to be delivered unto this humble form.” He starts to remove his robes.
I jump down next to him. He, Monkey, and Hottie all flinch. “Calm down, all of you! You (I point toward the girl) are free to go. You (I point to the monkey) stop stealing Felix’s thunder. And you (Baldie) stand up and tell me your name.”
No one does anything.
“Did none of you hear Your Majestic Flayed Truth? Get to it!”
The girl flees, Baldie does the ‘stand up while bowing’ routine over and over. The monkey at least looks me in the eye with a confused shrug.
“You haven’t told me your name…”
“Orloo, O Speaker Of Mo-” says Orloo.
“And you’re not looking at me.”
He’s trembling. When he looks up his black eyes are in tears. I can tell he’s surprised when he sees me smile.
“This will be one of the few times I order you,” I say. “Relax. I am not mad, I am just in need of an explanation. Tell… uh… Share with Me your wisdom, humble servant.”
Which I shouldn’t have said, but it keeps him happy. He tells me of this land, this freaky ass land. We walk along this enormous stone temple. There’s something about the cycle of the world, rebirth, cosmic wheel, blah blah blah, only we’re interrupted by artists.
At least I assume they’re artists. Since they have made, ya know, art. Some elaborate painted chiseled sculpture, a creature with 1.. 2…. 13 limbs? Not including the head, or the tendrils coming from it. Tendrils that sorta look like my dreadlo-
“Wait, Orloo, who is this?”
He looks at me, weighing his words. “O Magnificent Weaver Of Light And Shadows,” he’s bowing again, “the image may be distant from what You remember. As You have the Majesty To Attain The Aspects Of Whatever You Wish, Your mind may be Too Great to comprehend the mere mortal speck of our-“
“Cut the crap, Orloo. Who is this?”
Orloo turns red. I believe that, if he was capable of such, he would have melted right now. “It is You, O-”
"Me? How long was I out?”
Orloo licks his lips. “You were Of Unspoken Form for some days now, O Unblemished Eye Of The Holy. Your servant spake Your name, which we attributed to Your Noblest Names Of Old, as per Your wishes.”
“My old… Explain, Orloo.”
He cringes again. Should I not call him by his name? “Your familiar spake of thine current name, O Devourer Of Demons. Of it, I will not utter. As it was Majestic In It’s Differences from Your Most Splendorous Name, we servants of All You Survey were to Attribute It to Both. And thus,” he points to some squiggly lines which I assume are text, “Your Most Holiest Of Symbols.”
“But what does it say?”
I think I get this. I put on my most frowny of frown faces and glare at him. “Worthy Humble Servant Orloo. To receive Mine smiles you must speak unto Me My name of old. To receive My touch you must speak unto Me My name as it is written before Me.” I could get used to this god shit.
Orloo stands more upright. “AK’ET”
With one hand I point at the text, with my next I reach toward his shoulder.
“Sambak’et” he says.
I lay my hand on him. I bring forth pleasure as best I can in another in a few short moments. I think about erasing his fear, but I realize he would do better to keep it.
And then we talk.
And it’s really long and I only pay attention to part of it (it’s really long). I summon Felix in to help take notes. I’m glad I did, Felix is a lot smaller and more red and less monkey than the monkeymin these guys have following (for a second I thought he was gonna break free of the monkey-men and break the pattern and etc…). But Orloo drones on. So there’s a bunch of gods in this world, and Ak-Et is one of them, the Many Formed, The Many Limbed, The All The Other Fucking Names He’s Called Me, The Et Cetera. And they now think I am he. Mainly cuz I killed a demon when I first entered this place. (Demons run amok, it seems).
And then he presents me with gifts.
We’re in a large chamber, several of those monkey things are near. His words (he’s been talking a long time), “the relics have been well preserved, O Immortal Champion.” Three monkeys walk up carrying a large, awkward blade. “Your sword, O Demolisher Of Wicked And Untrue.” (I thank him and set it aside) Four monkeys come in with a suit of armor that looks like it’s made of bone. “Your deflection from the wicked, O Deflector Of The Wick-“
“It’s got holes in it,” I says.
Orloo licks his lips. “It-… It allows your limbs freedom for move-“
“It’s got holes in it!” Like. A lot. I might as well wear a necklace.
Orloo turns some color I have not yet seen in the visible spectrum. “O M-“
“No matter, most loyal and humble of servants. That you… uh… That you have preserved it for Me as such is reward unto itself. What else do you have for Me?”
He smiles as he leads me toward some large doors. He gives them a forceful shove and smiles at me again. “Your People, O Champion Of All!”
At this point I realize I’m still naked.