In Search of a God

In Search of a God

A Story by Trivn
"

The spirits of two worlds collided, now one world's inhabitants can traverse the void to the other, appearing as god-like beings. Primos inadvertently fell through the void and is now bound to a tree.

"

The two boys ran along the roots, out of the ruins of OldCity.

"Wait up!" called the younger boy, Jodar. He was short, stocky, and not quite as used to this kind of activity as his brother. Beror, on the other hand, was tall and slim and was often found jumping across the roofs of MidCity, swinging from branches, or scaling the outer cliffs.

"Hurry up or head back. I want to get to the core by midday!" called back Beror, sliding down a root twice his height.

"Why are we heading to the core? I thought we were looking for Primos?" asked Jodar as he decided to crawl under the same root.

"Where else would we find him?"

"A temple," remarked Jodar snidely. Beror stopped to glare at him before heading towards a small tree.

"Come on, you can catch your breath here," he said waiting for his younger brother under the tree.

Jodar caught up to Beror and promptly collapsed in the shade. "Oh get up, you can't possibly be that tired."

"I am too," said Jodar, rolling over, "you know I can't stand the heat."

 

The brothers spent a moment relaxing in the shade.

"Why do you think he's going to be out here anyway?" asked Jodar, "Doesn't he just vanish after speaking at the altars?"

"He vanishes from there, but he has to go somewhere, doesn't he?" Beror pointed out, "He can't just stop existing." He hoisted himself onto a low hanging branch.

"Why not? He's a god after all, isn't he? He can do whatever he wants," said Jodar.

"Those are just the rumors you hear in first classes. Once you get into second classes, like me, you'll learn more about them. Primos might be a god, but he still has rules. We learned that he was bound to the core a long time ago, before even OldCity was built. Back then it was just a small sapling, and he couldn't go anywhere. As the tree grew, he could wander out following the roots." Beror picked some oddly shaped fruits from the tree. He dropped a few insect ridden ones towards Jodar, careful not to hit him.

"Is that why the altars are built around those weird looking trees?" asked Jodar, grimacing at the discolored fruit.

"Yeah, exactly," began Beror, "Those are the roots that grew straight up and grew branches. The ol-"

"That's why he talks under them," interrupted Jodar, "'cause that's as far as he can go!"

"… Yeah, exactly," replied a disgruntled Beror, throwing the next fruit a bit harsher, "The older ones eventually grow fruit like this one. But when he disappears from there, he has to go somewhere. If he started at the core, then it must be easier for him to show up there, right? So the closer we get, the better chance that we'll see him." Although his reasoning was sound, Jodar wasn't convinced.

"But why wouldn't they let us see him at the altar?"

"I already told you, stupid. They don’t-"

"Don't call me stupid."

"I didn't, anyway we need-"

"Yes you did, you just did, why are you always calling me stupid?" Jodar crossed his arms and kicked a rotting fruit.

"Fine, I'm sorry," conceded Beror, "let's just get moving. It's almost midday and we haven't even reached the grove yet." He swiftly descended the tree, hitting the ground with a firm 'thud'. A pouch on the front of his shirt held several fruit. A couple fell when he landed. Neglecting to pick them up, he headed towards the cliffside.

 

"I might not be in second classes yet, but my teacher said we're not supposed to go in the grove," said Jodar, collecting the dropped fruit in his own shirt's pouch.

"It's not that we're not supposed to, they just don't want us to," Beror called back.

"Why not?"

"Because it's far away and children shouldn't be out this far," he stated matter-of-factly.

"Hey," Jodar realized the implication, "you're still a kid too!"
"Yeah, but I'm older and can find my way back. You'd get lost if you went into the grove alone."

"Would not," Jodar grumbled to himself.

 

The two walked in silence for a long while before reaching the edge of the grove.

"Finally," said Beror relieved. He looked back and forth at the wall of trees before them. "We need to get back out before it gets dark or we'll have trouble seeing, so stick close."

"I told you, I can find my way out by myself," argued Jodar, still preoccupied with being called a child.

"I don't care, just stay close and don't wander off," ordered Beror, "Mom's going to be mad at me if you get hurt out here."

"Fine," Jodar gave in and grabbed the back of Beror's shirt.

 

Just a few steps inside the light from the sun is all but blocked out and neither brother can see the ground in front of them.

"Ow," cried Jodar, tripping on a hooked root and scraping his knee.

"Oh, get up. And stop pulling my shirt so much."

"I tripped, I can't see anything"

"Just get up and keep walking. As long as we head straight we'll find the core."

 

The two wandered for a while longer.

"I think the sun's going down" said Jodar, looking up at the canopy.

"Of course it is, this is taking forever with you slowing me down."

"It's not my fault, you're the one going in circles"

"I am not"

"You are too, otherwise we would be there by now, but now we're trapped in here," Beror stated, reflexively trying to scare his brother.

"We're not trapped," replied Jodar.

Noticing a slight tremor in his brother's voice, Beror sighed, "Once we find Primos he'll show us how to get back out."
"How do you know? Maybe he wants to trap us in here. Maybe that's why they told us not to go here," Jodar speculated.

"The harvesters come here all the time for the fruit, if he wanted to trap people they wouldn't come back, would they?"

"Maybe he just wants to trap children. Maybe that's why we're told not to go during first classes." Jodar was too distracted trying to make sense of his own logic to be afraid anymore.

 

As the two continued to bicker, unbeknownst to them, a figure made its way towards them.

 

"Don't be so stupid, you're just-"

"There! You called me stupid again!"

 

The figure approached them. "My, it has been some time since children decided to wander through my grove. What could have brought you two to make such a trip?" He softly inquired.

Beror let out a startled gasp while Jodar finally released his brother's shirt and fell to the ground.

Letting out a small laugh, he spoke again, "my apologies, I didn't mean to startle you," the figure reached out and placed his hand on the branch of a tree beside him. Slowly, the branch began to glow with a warm light, showing the figure to be a man, just at the peak of adulthood.

"You two don't seem to be harvesters, were you in search for me by chance?" Primos inquired of the young brothers.

He quietly waited for them to collect themselves. Beror spoke first, "If you really are Primos then you should already know that, right?" he quipped.

"Beror! You're going to get us in trouble," cried Jodar, obviously frightened.

Laughing more heartily this time, Primos replied, "A common misconception. Though I can be anywhere along the roots, I cannot be everywhere. I simply felt something out of place in my home and came to inspect."

"I'm sorry, we didn't mean to intrude, we were just-"

"Hush Jodar. We came here to ask you a question," said Beror, "Where's our father? He was supposed to be back from the expedition weeks ago."

"For this you made your way through OldCity and into the grove? Could you not simply inquire at a temple?" Primos asked calmly.

Beror replied, "The guards wouldn't let us past. They said we shouldn't bother you about trivial things."

"I see," he breathed, "I assure you, I will always speak at an altar when requested, no matter the question. And this assuredly is not a trivial matter."

"That's what I told them!" exclaimed Jodar, "But they wouldn't listen, they sent me away, too!"

"Hush Jodar! If it is important, then tell us, where is our father? Why hasn't he returned?"

Primos leaned on a sturdy branch, pondering his answer. Finally, he responded, "You two are Beror and Jodar, children of the general, am I mistaken?" Jodar shook his head, Beror simply watched Primos. He continued, "Though this is a matter of importance, not only to you, but to the whole of your people, it is not one that I can give you an answer." Seeing the mix of disappointment and anger crossing the brothers' faces he continued, "As I am sure you already know, my permeance only reaches as far as the longest roots of the core. Your people's city stretches only a short distance further. All that happens beyond this is unknown to me." He saw the anger turn to sadness. "I apologize to you both. I know the pain of loss all too well. I cannot tell you of his fate; that is something you will need to discover for yourselves."

"What do you mean?" Asked Beror, "We're not allowed out of the canyon, only the general and his troops are allowed to go out there."

"Precisely," replied Primos, "If you wish to know your father's fate, you will need to train and be ready by the time the next expedition leaves."

"After we lost one group, people are asking if it's worth it. Everyone's getting scared; soon no one will want to leave anymore," Beror pointed out.

"If it comes to that and you still want answers, you will need to encourage them. Show them that there is nothing to be afraid of. Lead them yourself, if you must. Your people continue to request my wisdom, though I am bound to this place. The general's expedition is all you and I know of the outside world. If you wish to learn more, you must travel beyond the walls for yourself."

Beror and Jodar pondered his words for a moment. "What makes you think they'll listen to children?" Beror asked, "The general and his troops are picked from the best after years of training before they go to the surface."

"Then you will need to go through it yourself," Primos stated plainly, "If that is what it will take, begin tomorrow and train until they listen. Show them you wish to go yourself. Surely others will be inspired to do the same." Seeing the doubt in the brothers' faces, he continued, "If it would help, I will give you my blessing. That should be more than enough to convince your people that your path is one they should follow."

Jodar's face filled with excitement, then returned to doubt as turned to Beror. Never abandoning his own doubt, Beror said, "Only the overseers of the temples have ever receive your blessing, why would you give it to us?"

Carefully considering his words, Primos said, "In the past centuries, I have given my blessing to those who needed it. To the overseers, I give my blessing so they may protect the altars. Now I give it to you, so you may inspire others, leading them to the surface in search of your city's people." Convinced, only just, by his words, Beror relaxed.

Primos looked to the canopy, then knelt. "The sun will be setting soon," he commented, firmly placed his palm against the ground. "Follow this root, its light will guide you back to your city through the darkness. I will head back first and let them know you are headed back, I am sure they will be worried." As he rose, a root in the ground began to glow with the same light as the branch.

Thanking him for his help, and his blessing, Beror and Jodar turned to follow the glowing root. Jodar turned to see Primos once more before they left, but he had already vanished.

***

As Primos headed back through the network of roots he considered what would become of this small community. He had resided here for centuries. If the people stopped traveling, he would never find out if he is truly alone in this desolate world. He needed them to continue. Losing several of those frail beings shouldn't interfere with his search. Confident that he was doing the right thing, he continued on to the temple nearest the end of his reach, nearest to the outside world.

© 2016 Trivn


Author's Note

Trivn
I'm mostly looking for comments on the general feel of the story. Too slow? Too fast? Not enough explained? Is something confusing?
As a whole, is the story enjoyable, or does it need more to be considered complete?

The story is taking place on a world that is also going to host other stories, but I would like each to stand alone well.

My Review

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Featured Review

Pacing is excellent. Love, love, love the banter between the two brothers. Definitely enjoyable and hooks me into wanting to read the other stories taking place in this world.

The world-building is handled nicely within the dialogue, but I would love to have more description overall. I'm very intrigued by the setting, but it feels so different I could use, and would like, a little more to better understand and visualize this exciting new place. Same goes for Primos. More visual description would add another level of interest to this intriguing character.

The last paragraph is a little confusing. I get it, but I had a little trouble parsing it. Maybe having more information about why the people travel to the outside world and building up the danger of it would help drive home what Primos's goals are.

Overall it could use a little cleaning up, including tense, grammar and some sentence structure, but I wouldn't be worrying you about cleaning up if I didn't think it was nearing completion. So good job!


Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Trivn

4 Years Ago

Thanks for the review!
I'll be posting an updated version of this soon, and hopefully more wo.. read more



Reviews

Pacing is excellent. Love, love, love the banter between the two brothers. Definitely enjoyable and hooks me into wanting to read the other stories taking place in this world.

The world-building is handled nicely within the dialogue, but I would love to have more description overall. I'm very intrigued by the setting, but it feels so different I could use, and would like, a little more to better understand and visualize this exciting new place. Same goes for Primos. More visual description would add another level of interest to this intriguing character.

The last paragraph is a little confusing. I get it, but I had a little trouble parsing it. Maybe having more information about why the people travel to the outside world and building up the danger of it would help drive home what Primos's goals are.

Overall it could use a little cleaning up, including tense, grammar and some sentence structure, but I wouldn't be worrying you about cleaning up if I didn't think it was nearing completion. So good job!


Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Trivn

4 Years Ago

Thanks for the review!
I'll be posting an updated version of this soon, and hopefully more wo.. read more

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Added on April 3, 2016
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Trivn
Trivn

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About
"Jack of all trades, master of none, but better than a master of one." I have skills across the board, but I'm not anywhere close to a professional at anything. I like to read and write, play games a.. more..

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Chapter 3: Strategy Chapter 3: Strategy

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