Buto is right. Not every god is kind, not every one goes easy on her or decides to speak English so she knows what’s going on. The only thing they all do the same is call her Anck-su-namun (Darcy Lewis, once she raises hell about the name) and pass her through a door or archway of some kind.
She’s desperately hungry and sports a broken arm when she finds a cave and huddles there, hoping to sleep for a little while before dealing with another god. Menthi, or she thinks that was his name, had forced her to fight him even as she told him repeatedly she didn’t know how. And she didn’t know how until sai were put into her hands. Somehow, suddenly, she fought back with knowledge she’d never gained. While she didn’t get him onto his back, she was able to win with just a broken arm and be passed on through his gate of rusted metal and green reeds.
Never in Darcy’s life had she fought with a weapon other than her taser, so she desperately wanted to know where the sudden knowledge and abilities had come from. They hadn’t come from her, and Buto hadn’t put anything like that in her. But she thought it probably had to do with this name they all called her until she got mad.
Warmth presses at the back of her eyes. She bites into her top lip to stop the oncoming sob. She shakes with cold and fear. This isn’t where Darcy wants to be. She wants to be with Jane, a tent pitched and watching the stars, cataloging the gleaming trail of falling stars (even Jane, for all her love of astronomy, couldn’t help but call them such and make a wish or two, and Darcy misses that) in a warm, conifer forest in the Canadian wilderness. Or teaching Thor and Steve about modern appliances (more like reacquainting with Thor) and sitting them down for show and movie marathons, giving them books full of so much nerd you’d be crazy to not know them. Even talking gossip with Natasha and Pepper and Jane and Betty and Helen over margaritas the first Friday of every month and her doing Yoga with Bruce and Pepper every Saturday. That is where Darcy wants to be. With friends and family and warmth and happiness.
Her mouth is forced open from a gasping sob, her chest and stomach seizing painfully, reminding her that she also won against Menthi with cracked ribs. A choked off cry of pain leaves her, face burying in her unbent elbow since she can’t pull up her knees without her vision blackening.
A scuffle sound comes from somewhere further in the cave, and Darcy panics. She can’t fight someone again, or win a game of wit, or run now. For all Darcy knows, she’ll die right here and never get out of the hellhole of an Underworld (and the fuck what kind of Underworld even was this? She was taught that you rode a boat and went to Elysium if good or Tartarus if bad. What the fuck happened to the boat? What happened to being judged by helping people and fighting for the good fight? She’d only stolen one Jolly Rancher when nine, dammit!)
A body steps from the shadows, and Darcy already has a hand up, saying, “Wait, wait, wait! Please don’t hurt me! I– I can’t fight! Please, don’t!”
A man is staring at her, skin bronzed from sun and bald as a newborn baby, only wearing a black, gold-lined shendyt. He’s white, the first white person she’s seen in Odin knows how long and it’s mind boggling. He looks at her with dark eyes full of rage, betrayal, wonderment and passion. She imagines she looks like shit, hair a mess and bloody and shaking in terror. He could do whatever he wanted right now and she couldn’t stop him, which is what really fucking sucked.
“Anck-su-namun, you have finally come to walk the Underworld.”
And she bristles. She’s in pain and terrified but she won’t die being called another name. Darcy bares her teeth at him, shouting, “For the last fucking time, my name is Darcy Elisabeth Lewis! I was born to Janet Marie Lewis without a dad and I will die Darcy Elisabeth Lewis! You can eat my ass if you don’t want to call me Darcy!”
He looks taken a back, then his eyes narrow. He kneels down before her. “Interesting. You look and act differently. You don’t seem to remember, either.” He hums, briefly. “I suppose I can take you to the hall of the gods. I am willing to face judgment now that you are returned. We may face oblivion together.”
He holds out a hand, Darcy still glaring at him. She wouldn’t take his hand even if she could. “I don’t know what you said, but that,” she nods to his hand, “is not touching me. Plus, I can’t even get up.”
Her eyes go to her broken arm, dropping to her ribs she’s now wrapped her arm around. Then she raises an eyebrow, matching his expression.
“Yes, you certainly are no longer her. You would have stood up anyway.”
“I feel you just compared me to this chick again,” Darcy frowns. “Quit it, you asshole.”
He frowns too. “I will heal you so we may go.” He reaches toward her, and Darcy jumps, pressing into the wall harder. “Calm, Darcy Lewis. I mean you no harm, My Lover.”
Darcy turns her head away, hands clenching as his fingers run down her arm. It glows with a dark light as he mumbles words, heat spreading up her arm. The pain seeps away and her arm suddenly no longer hurts or feels heavy. Darcy moves it, staring in shock. He reaches lower and Darcy snatches his wrist fast before he can touch her torso.
“What did you do?”
The man doesn’t reply, staring at her. Darcy frowns. “Why did you do that?” More silence. Darcy sighs. “… Thanks.”
His eyebrow quirks again, eyes dipping to where her other arm holds her ribs. Reluctantly, Darcy lets go. Then he sits back on his hunches, watching as whatever he did works, fixing any cracks or bruises made to her torso.
She swallows heavily after, unsure of what to make of this. Darcy looks at him, waiting for him to say something. When he doesn’t, she says, “What’s your name?”
He’s clearly fucking with her. The way he smiles says so. But he doesn’t say anything. “I’m Darcy. You?” She points to herself when she says her name, then him, feeling like a dumbass because he’s being an asshole.
“Imhotep,” he says, and stands to his full height, lowering a hand to her.
Darcy doesn’t take it. She uses the cave wall, wondering what he’s playing at but knowing he won’t answer if he wants to keep up the pretense of not speaking English. They stand there, staring at each other, awkward.
“I… have to go, Imhotep, dude.” Darcy says, inching toward the mouth of the cave. “I’m hungry and now that I’m better I can go work on getting my ass out of here faster. Uh, thanks again, dude, Imhotep.”
“Wait,” he follows her, and moves ahead to block her. “You will die with no protection. How have you lasted?” She’s staring at him, confused, and Imhotep closes his eyes, knowing he must keep in mind she does not remember their– or more accurately his– love. So he turns his attention to her, searching for some sign of how. He finds it on the side of her throat. What looks like snake bites lie there, the sign of Buto’s protection, and Imhotep wonders how she achieved such, her having slighted the goddess with misuse of her creatures.
“Dude, if you aren’t going to come with, lemme pass. I don’t have time for this.”
She goes around him, heading out into sandy terrain, and Imhotep follows. The marks mean no god can kill her directly, and any trickery will fail. But terrible injury or poison are not off the table, like the injuries he just corrected.
“So you’re gonna follow me? Oookay.”
She finds the path she’d stepped onto, and begins to follow it. Imhotep takes up step beside her, watching her. “I am protecting you for my interest in us passing on together.”
“You need to speak English, dude. You’re so old you should know it. A couple of you guys do. I think all you gods do, most are just jerks and don’t want to. Like you.”
“What are you anyway? Some healer god? Did Buto send you? She’s the only one who was relatively nice to me.” Darcy asks, and he shakes his head, enjoying this version of Anck-su-namun. She was… certainly not pretty or fun, for him, but she did provide entertainment. He couldn’t wait for her to remember. Then she would be her true self in soul and body. “Then who are you?”
“Your former lover,” he tells her, and she frowns, still not understanding.
“Are you a guide?” The look he gives her tells her that she’s partially wrong, but not completely. “Alright, then. I’ll just call you ‘Guide’ then.” He frowns at her. “I mean, you gave me your name but I think Guide is better.” She smiles at him, eyes closed as she tacks on, “Until you start speaking English, anyway.”
So that’s how she will play. In a manner of speaking, he did start it but not breaking down the barrier her locked memories provide. Imhotep wouldn’t now, for sake of seeing how long it would be before she remembered herself and they could pass on.
“Anyway, since you’re so stubborn on the 'I no speaky Englese,’ I’ll take the lead.”
And she does for all of five minutes before they encounter Neit, who demands she preform a weaving contest against the goddess. It was interesting watching the way Darcy got so enraged at being called Anck-su-namun. She very much wished to distance herself from who she once was.
“I don’t know how to weave,” Darcy admits to the goddess after calming, and Neit appears unimpressed. “But I do know how to knit and crochet. Can we do that instead?”
“I will make no concessions for such a brat,” Neit says, Darcy glares. “You will weave or you are stuck here until you learn to do so.”
“That could take months or years!” she cries, horrified.
“Then you had best learn quickly, Anck-su-namun.” Neit grins. “You will not hear your new name from me until then.”
And Darcy flinches. It’s the first time a god hasn’t started using her name after yelling at them. Darcy opens her mouth to show her what for, done with the bullshit these gods put her through, but Imhotep easily slides between them, agitating Darcy and annoying Neit.
He bows to the goddess. “Lady Neit, the loveliest of weavers and mystics, this Anck-su-namun has no knowledge of who she is. Only of Darcy Lewis. Knitting and crocheting are the modern weaving of her society. To make her show she knows an outdated form of survival is an insult to her and the family who taught her, as much as an insult to herself.”
Neit scoffs. “Your flattery does nothing for me, Imhotep. We immortals know what you have done to procure such a mindless wandering here, but,” and she hesitates, just a fraction, “I will put her to a test of knitting.” Her bright yellow eyes turn to Darcy, “If you fails, you may never pass me. Anck-su-namun has no second chance.”
Darcy’s hands clench. “Alright.”
After Darcy knits a doll, socks, and a cap before Neit, the goddess passes the two along with a, “You did well, Darcy Lewis.”
And Darcy smiles, “I learned from the best, my grandmama.”
Imhotep takes the lead after that, deciding he can avoid the harsher gods and persuade the easier ones. He has no reason to take these tests, cursed to wander alone unless he can convince the hall to let him pass on with Darcy into oblivion.
And with her here, he will not take no for an answer.
Lol. Yes, actually, I have, friend. And I’ve also read the manga in which clearly, you have not. I highly suggest, dear reviewer, that you ought to as well, and then please come back and tell me again he would never talk to her like that.
Thanks for the review though, and your opinion, regardless. ^_^
thank u for accepting the ways of the Almighty Tags, here is ur ceremonial robe and i herby indoctrinate you into the ways and lore of the church of tagology. bring forth ur oblations to the sacrificial alter
I’m going to use the “she” pronoun since guys obviously don’t get periods. (Physically: No. Emotionally: YES.)
Osomatsu would crack a joke like, “Hehe, your pants look like the Japanese flag!” After getting a swift smack to the back of his head, he’d chuckle that he was just kidding and give her his hoodie to tie around her waist with.
Karamatsu would totally be like, “My poor Karamatsu girl… I shall tend to your emergency immediately!” Then in the matter of seconds, thIS BOI would take off his sparkly blue pants IN PUBLIC and lend it to his crush. “No need to thank me, my Karamatsu girl~”
Choromatsu hasn’t ever been in this kind of situation, so he’d panic, worried about people who’d possibly laugh at her, and grab her hand and run to the nearest clothing department to get her changed into a new pair of pants and underwear.
Ichimatsu would grimace and be like, “Ew.” After being snapped at for the rude remark, he’d say “Alright, alright. I’ll think of something.” And he do just that, finding a way to conceal the stain on her pants.
Jyushimatsu wouldn’t have to say anything, because he’d notice before she does and already be swooping her in his arms! He’d carry her princess style and run as fast as he can to take her home to change.
Todomatsu would gasp and say, “Ara, ara… We better get you some cute new clothes to change into, ne?” He’d know what to do since he’s got quite the feminine side. He’d take her to a name-brand apparel store and treat her to a new outfit. What a sugar daddy.
I’m rereading TFC and I’ve decided to google where Columbia is. Turned out that Lexington is on the outskirts of Columbia. I don’t know how many Columbias or Lexingtons in USA, but I find this all extremely amusing. Looks lik Boyd’s Lexington is near Andrew’s Columbia. I don’t know what I will do with this info but I wanted to share. Also if I’m wrong please correct me.
My boyfriend told me over text that he didn't know the Minotaur story
Boyfriend:I... I don't even know the story that well babe, I can't even say xD
Me:Poseidon gives a bull to King Minos, the best and shiniest bull you ever saw, and he's like "You can have this, but only if you promise to sacrifice it to me later" and Minos is like "Sure yeah okay man whatever" so Poseidon sends this bestest bull ever galloping up out of the salty sea spray, and everyone standing around is like "Hot fuck look at that bull" And Minos agrees, and he likes the bull SO much he decides to just quietly sort of...keep it. And he does kill a bull for Poseidon but it's one of his own, lame normal bulls, and Poseidon's no pushover so of course he notices.
Me:Poseidon is also notoriously easily angered, and he's royal pissed about this, so he comes up with one of the most devious punishments ever, and he infects Minos' wife Pasiphae with a desperate, DESPERATE thirst for the bull. Like she can think of nothing but getting some of that hot Bull D.
Me:But it's hard to convince a bull, especially a divinely spawned bull, to fuck you if you are in fact not a cow but a human queen, so she comes up with a plan
Boyfriend:I thought some god comes down in bull form and fucks her??
Me:Ohh, no no no, that's the much much more tame story of Europa, who has sex with Zeus in bull form. This is different
Me:She goes to the best inventor she knows, Daedalus, and she's like "I need this bull to fuck me I NEED IT" and Daedalus is like "That's really weird maybe you should talk to someone" and she's like "I am talking to you and I am your queen so you better fucking make this happen for me I am going to peel my own skin off if I don't get some bull dick ASAP. But he doesn't want me because I am not fat, four-legged, and mooing."
Boyfriend:Oh..... oh no.
Me:So Daedalus shrugs, probably shudders a little, and builds the prettiest, most fuckable wooden cow a bull ever saw, but he makes it hollow, presumably with some openings in some awkward places.
Boyfriend:OH GOD. NO.
Me:So Pasiphae puts this monstrosity in the field with the bull, climbs in it, and waits. And Daedalus really is a skilled inventor, and he apparently knows what a bull likes, because Pasiphae finally gets the hot bull loving she's been dreaming of
Boyfriend:I........ I need an aspirin. That is disgusting.
Me:Only she apparently hasn't been tracking her cycles, because she gets pregnant, and births the minotaur and King Minos is like "What the fuck?" and Pasiphae is like "Honey I need to tell you something"
You’re only able to maintain the visage of being a person when no one’s looking, is that it? Or are you the only one who’s blind to what you really are?
(Just because you’re dead (ish) doesn’t mean you can’t have nice hair; one-upping Jack from beyond the grave (kind of). Also this whole thing begins because someone walked on his lawn. You’re not the only one with a lawn, JACK. His lawn has goth lawn flamingos is better than yours.)