In the deep of the place where universes meet is a strange place of impossibilities that even the deities find challenging to navigate. However, those who do so successfully leave stronger than when they entered, and those who don’t become part of the strange place become an oddity.
A deity stared at the precipice of what is unknown and what is real.
“It just looks like more space. I don’t understand how this could be anything other than space?”
The deity reached out, and their hand slowed as it got further from them.
“Strange, it feels emptier. Somehow less than void of space, almost like nothing exists.”
They moved forward and subjected their whole body to it.
“It is oddly comforting.” They said as they embraced themselves. “Like a hug from an old friend.”
“Xiath.” A voice called out.
Xiath turned to see another deity floating at the edge of space.
“What are you doing so far out, Riann? Come to the edge.”
“I am at the edge; you said you wouldn’t go in until I arrived.”
“I barely took a step in.”
“You are a kilometre in.”
Xiath looked around, realizing she had travelled far further than intended.
“Must be pretty good if you got that lost this fast. We must be aware of everything happening in this zone, or we will be forgotten quickly.”
Riann floated into the strange place. They could feel their body reacting to the new environment; smiling, they shivered.
“Okay, I can see how you could get lost in this place; it smells like my home universe,” Riann said fondly,
“Your home universe smells like shells and cactuses?” Xiath turned their head as they asked.
“What? No, it smells like mixing pollen and dry dirt.”
Xiath and Riann looked at one another for a short while.
“Damn, this place does try to keep you in. It can even smell different, which out of all the things we have encountered, is not really that strange, but it does it well.
“Well, shall we look for a location? I hear they are even more wild than the sensory effects.” Riann asked with a hand outstretched.
Xiath laughed. “I am over here, buddy.”
Riann looked around and realized he was not facing xiath.
“Okay, can we hop out of this place for a minute?”
“Sure, clearing our heads before heading in deeper is probably a good idea.
Xiath and Riann wandered together until they were at the graveyard’s edge. They walked the grounds with sorrow in their hearts as they remembered those they had lost, so many over so many years; deities and mortals alike littered the graveyard, every single one wrapped in memories and emotions that tied them to the minds of the two that walked.
“Oh,” Xiath said as they reached the end of a path, where there was a massive monument of a headstone with very plain lettering and a short name. ‘Brill Hen.’
“It has been a long time since I have heard that name.” They knelt next to the monument with a hand pressed against the stone. They laid another hand upon their heart. Meanwhile, Riann looked down at them with jealousy.
“You understand that I am right here. Why do you have to rub this in my face?”
“Oh, poor Riann, can’t handle the emotions I hold for a mortal?”
“Held, surely. Why would you still hold feelings for him after everything he did?”
Xiath laughed, struggling between the exhale of laughter and the inhale of air to try and talk.
“They were a mortal; their actions represented the time they had lived; he barely had the time to learn the language he was born with, let alone learn how to control his mind and emotions.”
“You telling me that you could have an emotional connection with a being that you would consider underdeveloped, and when I express how I feel, it is discarded and left at the wayside.”
Xiath stood up, turning to Riann. They locked eyes; a fury glowed in them as their jaw tensed.
“If you had half the development that man had, maybe I would have looked at you like that!”
Riann had grief pour over their face as there was a brief moment where it faltered, and their face reset.
“What are we talking about?” Riann asked sincerely.
“I can’t believe you could have this ham-fisted attempt at trying to divert the conversation. We are discussing your failed attempt to be emotionally capable of being in a relationship.”
Xiath looked around; the expansive graveyard rolled past their vision and disappeared into the darkness.
“I, this is odd. I have no idea who this grave is supposed to be, but I felt those feelings so strongly like I don’t remember as a mortal.”
“I genuinely felt wronged by you, like you were withholding an experience I wasn’t allowed to ever have. I was scared, in a way, that I would miss that experience like my life would end without ever having it, and it was terrifying.”
“I was angry, but not with how we know rage; it is similar to you, I guess; I was angry because of how scared I was. Scared that I was going to succumb to relentless pursuits from you because I wanted to be around you more than I was scared of the forced relationship change. I was angry at your pursuit and scared of how I would change to accommodate.”
Xiath looked at their hands and flexed them outwards, curling their fingers as they caressed their palms sequentially. The sensation filled their mind, and they felt the emotions that were so strong now fading, like a dream it drained from their mind; it felt like it was pouring down the back of their skull, into their spine, then nothing.
“I am guessing it is gone for you, too, now?” Riann asked as they had a thousand-yard stare.
“Yes, I don’t even know how I feel about this; I don’t know if it was an experience I enjoyed, it was intense, more than anything I have felt since I can remember, and I think we might have just experienced mortal emotions.”
Riann sat upon the cracked and weed-infested path, their head in their hands and legs crossed.
“I, I can’t think properly. They are gone, but it is like a lingering effect; I don’t think they are gone. No, I know they are gone; what is left is different, like a shadow.”
“For me, it’s like a manifestation; it is not a part of what was, it is not a bi-product, it is something that has come because of what I felt.” Xiath paused for a long time before they muttered out again. “I think this is a shame.”
Xiath and Riann took a long silence before looking at each other excitedly.
“I know what this is. It is no wonder that so many of us get lost here. Come, Riann, let us see what else we can find.”
Xiath and Riann took each other’s hands, turning away from the universe they headed deeper into, searching for the emotional high they had just felt.