012 – The Drowning Giant (December’s Full Moon Story)

It is evening and I watch him mourn on the beach. He wails. He kneels on the beach, a thatch of seaweed hanging from his shoulder. He is too distraught to clean himself. Sea water drips from his long black hair. His keening cry can be heard for miles.

Near him lays the drenched and drowned body of his daughter, the surf washes up around her legs, and then away again.

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Not long after that evening I watch him mourn again. His pain fuels my rage because I knew his pain is a lie. I watched him murder two of his daughters. My sisters. He pretends he had no choice, that they were working to destroy the paradise he built. Paradise? What paradise is there for my two dead sisters, and the dead brother I know he killed before I was born?

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I don’t know why it took me so long to realize my destiny. I do not want the responsibility. I do not believe I am capable. I am a skilled killer, but my father is giant and powerful and old and sturdy. I believe he is eternal. Until I realize that one day he was born, and so one day he may die, and I know it is my destiny to kill him.
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While my father still mourns I gathered a few of my belongings and set out to visit my uncles. They are, to be blunt, assholes. No one likes them. Their father banished them to Shitty Island. My father, in a moment of sympathy, let them return to his paradise. I have heard him regret this decision many times. I know they do not like my father, despite him rescuing them from Shitty Island. I believe they will help me kill their brother.

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One uncle is a craftsman of sound, another of light, and the third of imagination. They doted on me as a child, collaborating on fantastical stories that weaved their crafts together in light, sound, and vivid images set into my mind. I remember those times fondly. When they are not pursuing their craft, each of them is bitter. Their sight is impaired, their vision limited, and they are ugly. They resent their more attractive cousins. The bitterness is rooted deep in their hearts, and no manner of persuasion can convince them they are not despised. Their bitterness often leads to confrontations, which only confirms their belief that no one really likes them.

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We drink. Deep in our cups I let slip a way to improve paradise. If only my father were not the one and only judge of all. We should all be kings, I explain wistfully, drunkenly. I have given this much thought beforehand, but make it seem as if this were all occurring to me as I drank, that maybe I am speaking on behalf of the spirit of the wine, that this vision is spontaneous. Everyone should have a voice, I say, not just one man. My uncles agree.

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I ask them again in the sober light of morning. They smile. They agree. They will help me kill my father. They tell me a secret. Each of them is already building an army. Each has fifty men they trust to act on their command. They will act on my command, so I have one hundred fifty men trained to destroy paradise. One hundred fifty men who will help me kill my father and bring down his kingdom. One hundred fifty men who will attack as one.

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I travel to three near-by villages with a message and a promise. Their time will come soon. One village ss by the sea, one in the mountains, and one on the plains. As I travel another uncle finds me and gives me a message. Another sister, my favorite, has been drowned by my father. My father has finally noticed my absence. My uncle warns me that if my father finds me he will kill me. My destiny is set. I have no home; I have only my path.

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In these days the earth provides food in abundance. The air is sweet and the water healthful and invigorating. The mornings are cool and the afternoons are warm. The showers are soothing and the animals are kind and helpful. My hatred makes me blind to this world. The food is like dust in my mouth and I consume it only to fulfill my destiny. I ignore the sun and the rain and the moon. I speak with the animals only to learn more of my enemies and to locate my allies. Through my eyes I see only a hollow falsity in the paradise surrounding me.

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Despite my hollowness I find companionship. My cousin comes to me and becomes my stalwart companion. I come to rely on her almost as much as I rely on my own hatred. She shares my vision. She, too, wants to see paradise destroyed. She has a husband and beautiful children, but she loves me more. And I love her children as my own. From her I take the strength I need. As I travel and made alliances I realize my task is not as simple as I imagined in the first flash of anger. If I kill my father… When I kill my father a war will ensue. Paradise will shatter and blood will flow. I have to plan, not just for murder, but for the world afterwards.

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As I stand by the ocean, thinking of my remaining brother, I receive word that he is dead. My final sibling killed by my father. Only I remain.

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One aunt also loves me deeply and it is in her realm I live with my lover and her children. It my loving aunt who keeps me hidden from my father. Forever in my eyes she can do no wrong. It is she who convinces my mother to become my ally, to embrace her son and reject her husband. It is because of my aunt my mother decides to become complicit in the murder of my father. He has murdered her children and paradise for her has also become hollow.

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On a day of celebration my mother prepares a feast for my father. It is a joyous occasion. My father invites all of his brothers and sisters, his aunts and uncles, his mother (but not his father because he killed him), his nieces and nephews (but not his children because he has killed them). The earth provides a bountiful table. The rivers produce water that nourishes and replenishes. My mother brews mead from the sweet honey of the perfect bees.

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Some at the party knew what to expect. Most did not. My mother keeps my father’s cup full and makes him drunk. In the night when the party is overcome with weariness I step forward.

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I strike my father and kill him.

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The war begins.

THE END
Tampa, Florida