Original Stories Fan Fiction ❯ Capricious Infection ❯ Act 35: The Balancer ( Chapter 35 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Act 35: The Balancer
"You can trust me," David reassured the Dius that his secrets were safe with him. "Black is a bitchin' color to have for blood. Makes red look outdated and shit." Seriously, everyone's blood was red. It was fascinating that another race had different colors of blood that all determined different attributes about members of their race.
"Let's go and talk to the others. You were right when you said that we need to establish boundaries." David had a good idea, and he planned to go through with it. Bringing together the different races, or at least the Dius and human races and giving them a mutual understanding would hopefully diminish the problems between them. If nothing else, it would give them a better understanding of each other's cultures.
"I think we can understand each other this way. You know, really get what each other is about." If the humans and the Dius were going to live together, it should be common knowledge between them.
Everyone was gathered in the living room together. They stood among each other, chatting among themselves. The group actually wondered why David and Oz had them all assemble there. Karkatta turned from her conversation with Tarvos, her face modeled into that trademark scowl she always wore.
"So, what are we doing this time in the rumpus ass fuck emporium?" She placed her hand on her hip.
"We're going to have a round table discussion,” David announced as he caught the attention of the group. Their conversations died out as all eyes were on him.
"Ugh...I thought I told you already, no get to fucking know you sessions." Seriously, Dante was tired of this shit.
"We need this time," David insisted. "If we're going to work together, then we should understand each other's race." Even if there were cultural walls between them, at least they would know what they were. It was important to be culturally aware of customs and habits of others, especially aliens that they barely knew anything about.
"We are vastly different," Pregmacia thought it seemed like a good idea to her. Perhaps understanding their differences would be beneficial.
"Yes, understanding human habits is difficult. I still have yet to grasp this 'gay' thing fully," Oz was a little confused on human's sexuality types and the different types of names that they had for each of their relationships.
"I don't really understand your love sectors, either," Lannad held her arms out and frowned. That was a concept that still confused her to this day.
"What do humans have, if they don't have sectors?" Tarvos had always wondered about that. Human's relationships seemed to be a lot more complex than their own and they categorized them in strange ways that the Dius did not.
"We just have girlfriends or boyfriends, and then we get married." That was the simplest way that Lannad could explain it.
"Married? What's that?" The concept only confused Tarvos even more.
The priestess looked thoughtful for a moment. "Hmm...It's when you have a ceremony and you promise to belong to each other. Then you kiss and get a paper that says you're together."
"Why?" Oz didn't see the sense in any of that. Human customs were odd.
"Why what?" Lannad cocked her head. She didn't see how it didn't make any sense. It was perfectly legit to her. Was there something about it they didn't understand? It was really straight forward.
"Why do you have a big ceremony just to kiss and say what you already know? Why do you need paperwork for that? What do you even do with it? Do you walk around flashing it in people's faces?" Tarvos didn't understand the purpose of getting a piece of paper that told the world that you were together with someone. What good did it do? Wasn't just telling everyone you were in a relationship with that person good enough?
"It's just how it's been. It's romantic, and everyone enjoys it," Lannad replied. A marriage ceremony was fun and it served as a symbol of love between the two people who were being united.
"If you love someone, then you don't need to show everyone. It makes no sense. You damned sure don't need a paper to say you're together. Seems pretty stupid to me." Folding their arms over their chest, Karkatta rolled their eyes.
"Well, how do you do it?" Lannad was interested to see what the Dius interpretation of marriage was.
"We get to know each other and decide our relationships based on the time we spend together. If we feel like an established bond is close then we dub them to be in a sector." To Pregmacia, it was that easy. Dius had many bonds, but few sectors and more often than not once a sector was filled, there was no going back.
"How do you only have one best friend? I mean, sometimes it's hard for us to choose," David always found that strange. There were things he liked about all of his friends, but trying to choose one that was closest to him so he could keep them as a friend forever was strange to him.
"For me, it's the only person I feel a bond with. To us, friendship is a romantic relationship. We kiss, hug, nuzzle, comfort each other and we do each other sexual favors," Tarvos decided to explain what exactly constituted as friendship in their terms.
"It's like having a friend with benefits," Rezzi knew what that was.
"Yeah, human "best friends" which would be your stratos, act like that," Tony explained. "With regular friends, we are just close. We tell each other everything and we're kind of like family. Your best friend is that person you can lean on. The person who's there for you no matter what." Unlike Dius, humans had different types of friendships.
"You can have benefits, so it's like being the Dius equivalent of a stratos," Rezzi added.
"I guess the only difference in a stratos and a pyrex are that you can mate with your pyrex and not your stratos. Although there are occasions where all three sectors love each other equally, that allows you to mate with both and hatch pupas," Tarvos explained a more complex side of the Dius mating chart.
"So...a baby Dius is a pupa?" Tony arched an eyebrow. When he thought of pupa, he generally thought of caterpillars or maggots, something that was the beginning stage of an insect, not a race of people that looked so humanlike.
"Unlike mammalian humans, we Dius hatch from eggs and swim in the water. We become bipedal as we mature," Oz explained the early stages of life to them.
"Humans are carried inside of the body. We give birth," Lannad told all of them about the way humans were brought into the world.
"What I don't understand is how who males can have kids." That's been the big question with Dante. In human eyes, it baffled all logic. Were their inside created differently or something?
"All of our genitalia look the same," Tarvos explained.
Lannad blinked in confusion. "Then how do you have the ability to look a definitive gender? Wouldn't you all look the same?" That was how it worked for hermaphroditic creatures of her world. Hermaphrodites were a strange and confusing concept to begin with, however. She never fully understood them.
"We have a predominant gene that makes us sound and look one way or another." When Oz clarified that fact, it did make a little sense to her in a way.
"Kinda sounds like hermaphrodites to me," Tony placed a finger to his lips, still not entirely convinced.
"We probably are," Tarvos agreed and shrugged.
"What?" Oz glanced at the mohawked boy.
"Hermaphrodites have both genitalia but they can look either male or female and they reproduce with each other. They're bisexual...technically, because they are both genders." It sounded more like David was asking questions more than stating a fact. He wasn't exactly sure how hermaphrodites worked, either.
"But we really don't have two sets of genitals," Oz didn't want them to presume anything, or think that they fit into any subspecies category of human or whatever they were trying to classify them as.
"We just have one that looks the same despite the gender," Tarvos pointed a finger into the air matter of factly.
"Do you lay eggs?" Lannad remembered them mentioning hatching from eggs, so how did that work?
"Our eggs form outside of our bodies," Tarvos replied.
"How does that happen?" It seemed impossible to David.
Pregmacia informed the humans that all Dius mating was external. They simply combined their fluids and mixed them together. After that, they formed a casing around it and placed it in the water. Inside of the casing, the fluids formed an outer shell that grew and burst as the embryo formed inside. After a year's time, the Diu pupa hatched in a larval state and ate sea life as a form of primary food source.
"So, that's how it works," Dante felt as if he was getting a lesson on his own people.
"There are special cases, like Tarvos. He was created, but that is really rare. He's only one of two that were created," Karkatta brought up the exceptions to the rules.
"Can your species interbreed with others? Like, would it be possible to have an interracial love-child or some shit?" David was a little curious about that sort of thing now. Could Dius breed with humans? Would such a thing be possible, or were alien hybrid babies a thing that only existed in horror and sci-fi movies?
"Your human babies form inside of your bodies, correct?" Oz looked thoughtful for a moment, rubbing his chin.
"We do," Tony clarified.
"Human females have eggs inside of our bodies," Lannad added.
"Feels like sex ed all over again," David commented.
"Male and female bodies produce different types of fluids. The female body creates an egg and the male body produces sperm in which he penetrates the female body and releases it inside of her. This fluid penetrates the human egg and a baby is created like that," the priestess continued to educate the Dius on how human reproduction worked.
"I wonder how similar our DNA is. Wouldn't that determine whether or not we could." At least, that's what science class taught David.
"Or we could let you and Oz experiment with that," Dante rolled his eyes. He knew exactly why David was asking that sort of thing.
"Dude! Stop!" David shouted, trying to cover his face as his skin turned dark red. Sure, that was one of the reasons he was asking but it wasn't the entire reason he was asking. Honestly, he was just curious!
"I-I-I don't...It's not the time for repopulation," Oz stuttered, trying not to flush a darker shade of gray. Why would David think such things? Did he truly wish to do something like that with him?
"Besides, babies are dependant. We live with our parents until we're like eighteen to twenty," David waved in dismissal as the color of his face slowly returned. He wanted to get away from this subject as much as he could.
"How bizarre," Oz noted.
"You guys are like...shit tons more mature than us." It was undeniable beyond the shadow of a doubt that the Dius acted as if they had many years of wisdom, far beyond that of the humans.
"What type of society do you have? I've always wondered what social standards you have and if you had a government or a monarchy," Rezzi was more interested on their social structure than their ways of reproduction and if cross-species hybrids were possible. She purely wanted a look into their culture, to understand them and their customs and ways.
Oz began to explain that there were steps to the positions in Dius power. He and Calypso governed in a monarchy. If the two of them quarreled, the dispute was settled by the Balancer. The Dius had a justice system. If a crime was committed, the perpetrator was publically punished or humiliated. If someone committed treason, they were branded. If they continued to defy Dius law, they were killed.
"So, it's like an eye for an eye?" That's what David gathered, anyway.
"The Balancer regulates all. He is the most fair of the Dius and holds no attachments to be biased. This means, he holds no sectors," Pregmacia provided additional information regarding information on the utmost important position in the Dius culture.
"He can't love anyone?" David thought that was kind of harsh to do to whoever was in that position.
Rezzi's eyes widened as she finally made the connection. 'Unwine?'
"The Balancer is not permitted to love anyone. Doing so would alter his state of judgment," Pregmacia knew that this was the way that it always had been. For centuries and centuries the Balancer had always completely alone. Having a lover of any kind would impair their pure sense of unbiased nature and justice. They would become partial and corrupt.
"What's the Balancer's name? Will we meet him?" Rezzi wanted to make sure that her assumption was right. Surely, the others knew the true identity of the Balancer.
"His name is Unwine Umbera, and you probably will," Karkatta rolled her eyes. "Not that he's anything special. He pretty much hates everyone and everything. Not even being sarcastic about that one."
Revelation crashed into the blind girl like a freight train. Shock registered through her body as she felt stiff and rigid. Everything was beginning to make sense now, and she felt stupid for not catching onto it before. 'I think I finally understand now...Unwine...He's the most important Dius of them all. The untouchable one. I don't even know what to say. Should I say anything at all? Impulse dictates that I do but...I've already made the situation between us really bad by saying that I cared about him. He probably took it the wrong way or saw me as just another dependant. I must have hurt him really bad. If ever I deserve that middle finger, it would be right now. Telling him that I cared about him was probably the most inhumane thing I could have done. Rezzi, you screwed up big time.'
There was no bigger jerk in the world than her right now. Rezzi felt horrible to the point of feeling physically ill. What had she just done? There wasn't a way to rightfully fix it, and by acting hurt and crying about it she already added extra guilt to the Balancer. Right now, he had the right to send all of the horrible texts and middle fingers he wanted and she would take them all with grace.
"So, if we had to build a world together, how would we operate it? I mean, we're a shit ton different, so we need a universal system," David's words cut into her thoughts as she turned her sights to the black-haired boy in shades.
"What do you suggest?" Oz arched an eyebrow. He was interested to hear what the earthling had in mind.
"I can't do the mating thing. I have to be able to date." There was no way that Tony was going to even try to conform to Dius rituals. He just wasn't comfortable with that kind of thing. It reminded him of the dark ages where arranged marriages took place and he wasn't into it at all.
"Date? What is that?" However, his subject only made Pregmacia more confused.
"It's where you have a kind of trial pyrexip with someone, only you're not really pyrex." That was the best that Dante could explain it in terms that they would understand.
"That makes no sense. Why would you want anyone to see that side of you that you weren't planning on seeing permanently?" Tarvos could never comprehend being intimate with someone who wasn't in a sector. That was forbidden by the Dius' race standards.
Karkatta held one finger up and interjected. "Better question, why would you be with someone when you weren't sure? Your race is fucked up."
"We're indecisive. It's seeking a potential mate. We date to see who we want to be with. It tells us who we are and what we like." For humans, it was a sense of self discovery, at least, that's what Tony saw it as. There was nothing wrong with wanting to figure out who you were and what you liked. Not everything was set in stone.
"I don't know," Dante looked thoughtful. "Having the Dius philosophy would be kind of like an arranged marriage. You only have one chance so no fuck ups. If you fuck up then you're stuck with your mistake. There's no such thing as a divorce." That's what it seemed like to him - a permanent marriage.
"Divorce?" Karkatta's fingers ran through their black hair. What in the great blue hell was a divorce?
"If a marriage doesn't work and you can't get along then you can get a divorce," Lannad knew that this was going to be a whole different can of worms, but she was willing to explain it the best she could.
"You don't mate for life?" Karkatta was shocked by this.
"I'm confused," Tarvos scratched his head.
"Human relationships are complicated," Oz noted, much more complicated than their own relationships.
"So, what happens in a divorce thing? Another piece of paper?" Karkatta could only guess the possibilities.
"Yep, it says you're single again and why and some other shit," David shrugged. He really didn't know how divorce papers worked either.
Karkatta's eyebrow arched. "Who gives you these pieces of paper?" That was the true question they should have been asking.
"A divorce attorney," David answered the short-haired alien's question. "They decide what happens to your relationship and junk."
"Idiocy," Karkatta scowled. "You can't just say fuck this pyrexip! I'm out!" There was no way in hell that she was going to comply with his human marriage demands.
"You can but you have to make it official." At least, that's what it was like for humans. It's not like David was explaining the fact that Dius had to do it. He was just saying that was what humans did.
"Your race likes making a big deal out of nothing," Tarvos thought the whole ordeal with the papers and divorce attorneys were stupid. If pyrexips went bad in his culture, he had other means of dealing with bad spouses.
"Yep, I can agree to that," David wasn't going to lie, humans had a special way of fucking things up.
"Your pyrexip papers make no sense," Tarvos was still trying to wind his thinking organ around it, but to no avail. It just truly didn't connect in his mind.
"The only way to get out of our pyrexip is to die," Karkatta's stone stare made their words all the more forboding and dark. It sent a chill up everyone's spines.
"So, killing your mate is legit?" David's voice quaked with that question. It was definitely not legit for humans. That was another matter entirely. It was murder.
"Don't get caught," a sly, twisted smile curled on the reaper's lips.
"It's a controversial subject among the Dius race," Oz educated.
Tarvos started adding up all of the strange human customs in his head. "So, you kiss in front of people who don't really care, and then you get a piece of paper...because kissing your pyrex isn't enough proof. You never use this piece of paper so it doesn't mean anything. It says your permanent but you really aren't because if you don't like each other you can get this divorce paper...because you can't make a decision on your own." Everything literally contradicted everything else in the human race's mating habits. The reaper honestly couldn't figure out why this was so, and why they needed too many damned pieces of paper. It really made no sense at all.
"You make it sound so ridiculous," Dante crossed his arms and glared over at the grim reaper. In fact, Tarvos made it sound flat out stupid.
"It is to us," Karkatta explained, "if you're going to have a ceremony then make sure it's fucking permanent, and do away with the fucking papers. Obviously, not even you care about them." If no one ever looked at the things and they didn't carrry them around to insure their pyrexip was right or legal, or whatever the hell it was to them, then why have them? They didn't do anything but gather dust somewhere until or if they wanted to break up.
"It matters in legal issues," Rezzi pointed out. If a human tried to marry another while they were already married it would show. This was also true in many other cases, so the pieces of papers weren't exactly obsolete.
"Our way is still better," Karkatta was going to stick by their belief on the matter.
"Why can't we each decide what's best? We should have that freedom," Lannad thought that course of action was the best one to take. They deserved to live their lives as they each saw fit.
"Who is going to rule this world we make anyway?" That was a question that constantly hung on the back of Tony's mind. He worried about what kind of ruler would be intact, if any at all. After all, the ruler was the very one that the foundation of their world would rest on the shoulders of. Whoever it was had to be wisely chosen.
"I'll decide that. Trust me, I'll pick good candidates. They will be approved through you," Oz was going to make sure that their new world worked, no matter what he had to go through to do it. The new world was going to be spawned into creation, and it would be created and ruled with fairness.
"A monarchy?" So, that's the kind of government that Oz wanted? Rezzi was interested to gain more knowledge about this subject.
"I'm unsure yet," he didn't exactly say that's what it was going to be, but Oz supposed that was what he was implying.
"Does the Balancer have to oversee the new world?" It was something that bothered the blind girl. She would feel terrible if Unwine had to govern something else, especially when the weight of the world was already resting on his shoulders.
"Duh! His decision is the most important! We'll need him to determine the outcome of this war." Apparently Rezzi didn't truly get what the true purpose of the Balancer was. Karkatta knew that the humans could never understand the Dius rankings or what exactly they did in their respective positions.
"It seems cruel to have someone exist without having any love. If you think he hates everyone, he must be unhappy and have a legitimate reason to," Rezzi couldn't take it anymore. To continue to go on about him like everything was alright was just wrong. There had to be a better way. There just had to be. Surely the Balancer could share his life with someone without being labeled as bias.
"Why do you care about Unwine? You don't even know him," Oz was very confused at why the blind girl cared so much for the teal-blooded Dius. Was there something going on that he had no realization of?
"Humans can die without contact or interaction. It makes you depressed and miserable," Rezzi knew that had to be why Unwine acted so foul. It was because he completely isolated himself from society and lived on his own. That had to be the reason he was so rude and horrid.
Oz looked concerned at the girl's words. 'Did I just...make the same mistake again? But, Unwine is affected in different ways than Ares is.' That couldn't have been! Damning both of his offspring to horrible lives...was it really what he had done to both of them? How many things did he screw up by doing what he did? Tarvos, Ares and now Unwine...Oz thought he was doing what was best for everyone, but in reality, he was only doing what was best for him.
What had he done?
"Can't he just have a friend, or even a confidant?" While it wasn't her affair, Rezzi wasn't going to just stand by idly. She wanted to pay him back for all of the help that he had given her throughout the years.
"If he did that and this "friend" did something to go against the laws that we put forth, then he would make an exception for that friend and become biased turning our system of judgment into a tainted one." That was the foundation on which the Balancer was made. Oz, and the other Dius relied heavily on the pure judgments of someone who was no effected by outside sources or bonds with others, the Balancer was seen as the ultimate sense of justice among the Dius people.
"What if that person would be someone he'd be forced to murder if they did wrong?" Rezzi was going to continue to argue his point. She knew she could find a way to prove that Oz was wrong.
She just had to pick at his blood pumper a little.
Oz was sharp and stern with his reply. "Absolutely not! That happened before and it cost the Dius race dearly." He didn't want to be responsible for another calamity. The one he was in was enough to affect the entire universe, and the ones he'd been involved in the past were just as bad. Oz was tired of failure.
"What if I abandon my position as prophet?"
"What?" David did a double take. Was she for real? She was just going to give it up just like that?
"You can't do that!" Dante shouted, holding up a fist as if he promised something horrible if she dared to even go forth with that kind of brash stupidity. This wasn't like her! What the hell was her problem? He didn't understand why she was doing this.
"Why?" Oz glared the girl down. Her position was the way it was for a reason. Was she purposely defying him after he had been so lenient as to save her life from the apocalypse?
"What if I become a Balancer?"
"How do you know he's unhappy with his job?" The Dius of Time wasn't completely convinced that he should even give the rebellious girl the time of day. In fact, she was beginning to irritate him by assuming she knew the magnitude of the situation.
"I don't," she had no proof, but she was going to assume.
Oz held a large amount of skepticism in his voice. "What makes you think that you can do the job better?"
Rezzi placed a hand to her chest and leveled Oz with a stern visage. "I'm not saying that. On a set of scales there are two sides, if you only have one Balancer then everything rides on his opinion. If you had two, they could come together and make a joint decision. This way it's ensured that corruption doesn't happen again. If anything, the pressure would be relieved from his shoulders and he would have that communication and a chance to have a pyrexip with them if he wanted."
"The Balancer is an important component. If the Balancer is corrupt, then our race dies out completely. This world ends and so do many faces on it. Time, Space and Life are all purged into a void. The universe would literally recreate itself," Oz wanted to make her understand how serious changing the role of the Balancer even slightly was. She could completely end existence itself with such an act of rebellion. While change was progressive and often a great thing, in this case it was clearly not.
"He's...that important?" It seemed like it was finally beginning to sink into her now.
"So, he's like...a god?" David was a little interested in what exactly he was himself.
"He is order itself."
"Even if I sold my soul, you would still deny him," Rezzi was twice as upset as she was before. It was beginning to show visually on her. Black lips trembled as she felt the overwhelming hopelessness of her situation bearing down on her like an anvil.
"He knows his fate." It wasn't as if Unwine never knew the consequences of his circumstances. They were something that was made very clear to him.
"That's so cruel," Rezzi still retained her opinion on the matter in an emotion-filled reply. She wanted to cry.
"What the fuck is wrong with you? You act like you're in love with this guy!" Dante didn't understand why she was so emotional about him or why she was so hardcore on trying to change his life, as shitty as it was.
"No, I just feel bad for someone with that type of existence. I believe that the Balancer deserves to have a normal life instead of filling him with hatred. That won't make his judgment better, it will make him tyrannical," Rezzi was still defending the Balancer.
"He's had deception purged from him and he's done more than pay for his sins," Oz rectified his point.
"You make it sound like you're punishing an animal," Rezzi argued.
"You don't understand anything," Oz shot, warning her to stand down with his tone alone.
"I'm blind, but I'm not as blind as you are," Rezzi defended herself. "Think about how this psychologically affects him. If the human race and the Dius race will be two predominant races then why can't there be a Balancer for each?" It sounded plausible to her. One Balancer could govern the Dius and one could govern the humans. That was fair enough to her.
"You would sacrifice your own free will for him?" That was what it took to be Balancer. Oz hoped she knew exactly what she was propositioning.
"I cannot judge him, not for the superficial things that people do," Rezzi tipped her head down, as if to look at the ground."Allow me to get to know him-"
Karkatta was quick to cut her off. "Do you know a capriciouscarnage?"
"Yes, I do," Rezzi turned to the direction of the Dius' voice.
"Then you're the one he talks about. UndyingProphecy."
"Is that who that was? We've been friends for a long time, even before Twisted Land." That was it. capriciouscarnage was the Balancer. She had been talking to the Balancer that entire time. The most important man in the existence of their universe served as her friend and guiding light through everything.
It all made sense now. Why she was spared. Why she had that specific role to play. Why she and her friends acquired Twisted Land. All of that time, he was guiding her. He knew about the end of the world because he helped cause it in a sense. She had been the one dancing on the ends of his strings.
"When did you meet c.c?" Karkatta was interested now. How deep of a bond did the two of them truly have?
...To Be Continued