Surrender to my Love
Elanor Laison got up with a sigh and went over to the console. Tapping the red button, she muted the alarm before looking at the screen. Fifteen seconds later, Mortic Wentway was sufficiently disturbed by her complete lack of movement that he walked up behind her. "El?"
"Mort..." Her voice was faint. "It... they..."
Mortic frowned down at the screen. "'Surrender to my Love'," he read aloud. "'Originally written as a one shot. Like my character, I have surrendered to my love for Yahweh God.' Um, what?"
"It..." Elanor shuddered slightly. "It's Bible fanfic. She claims that Isaiah gives her justification for having a romantic relationship with God."
"That... whoa." Mortic shook his head. "Is that true?"
"I don't know, I've never read through Isaiah... I doubt it, though." The girl's left hand reached up to her neck, although Mortic knew she had no necklace of any description. "Do we have to take this?"
Mortic shrugged. "I guess so. Hey, at least we've had a nice break so far."
"Yes, but most of that was tied up in... you know." She bit her lip. "All that mess."
"True." Mortic tried not to think about the events of the last few days, events which not even his Order training could blot from memory. "Well, maybe a mission will take our minds off it."
Elanor laughed cynically. "As if that's going to happen. I wonder..."
"She'll be fine," Mort said, anticipating her thought. "Now come on – time's running, and the sooner we get this over with, the better."
Elanor sighed and pulled up the appropriate menu. "Disguises?"
Mortic looked blank. "I don't know... where are they?"
"It... doesn't say." Elanor shook her head. "No setting at all. We're in trouble."
"Hmm." Mortic frowned. "Maybe just 'spirits'? It is Bible-fic, after all, and we'd be invisible..."
"Charging might be tricky," Elanor pointed out. "And killing. How about angels? They can be unseen when they want, I guess..."
"Angels it is, then," Mortic agreed. The Order hadn't made much of Christianity, so he wasn't fully conversant with the details. Speaking of which... "Elanor," he asked, "do you know enough about this to write a charge list?"
The young woman looked uncomfortable. "I, ah..." She bowed her head slightly. "I used to be Christian, before... uh, you know. I can remember most of it again."
Mortic nodded. "Good. Then, shall we go?"
"Oh. Yes." Tapping a few more buttons, Elanor opened up the portal into the 'fic. Grabbing her pack from where it lay, she stepped forward. "Onwards and... yeah." She stepped through, followed closely by her partner.
The pair appeared in a featureless white void, in what seemed close to their own bodies, wearing white robes. This meant that they blended in fairly well, and so could stand – or float, or whatever they were doing – close to the characters without being seen. Mortic wasn't sure if this was a blessing or a curse.
Yeiweh was in love for a very long time with a bishonen like young man with red hair and blue eyes. She thought of him as adorable because he was so shy and ever so kind. No one treated her better than he did. When he held her in his arms she felt safe. They kissed and cuddled and she had never felt a stronger bond with one person that did he.
"Oh my," Elanor murmured. "That's... is that meant to be God?"
"I'm afraid so," Mortic said, skimming the Words. "Only he goes by Yahweh God. Charge?"
"What, the name, or the description of him as young, red-haired, and..." She glanced at the Words for the current description. "... 'hot and muscular', I see."
"I was thinking the description," Mortic admitted. "The name hasn't show up yet."
"Well, write it, then." Elanor frowned at the pair of characters, one of whom – the female – was now massaging the other. "She a 'Sue?"
"Yeah. Goes by the name Yeiweh, disturbingly. Another charge?"
"Name stealing and altering, yes."
"Tell me your name..."
"Argh, the ellipses." Elanor glared at the characters. "Stop trailing off everywhere."
"And being so secretive," Mortic added. "If they're so in love, why all the secrets?"
"Because otherwise, there'd be no plot," Elanor pointed out. Mortic nodded thoughtfully.
"Ah, well. I suppose- she's a what?"
"You... you're the Ghost Girl?
"No way on Earth can a half-ghost, half-human exist," Mortic snarled. "You little abomination, I'll-"
"Wait until later in the 'fic to do anything, I'd hope," Elanor finished. "Come on, Mort, it's not that bad."
"Oh, believe me, it is," he muttered darkly. "What're they up to now?"
Elanor looked at him in amusement. "Ears not working?" she asked. "They're just declaring everlasting love to one another. And they want to get married."
"Charge." Elanor shook her head as Mortic scribbled another line in his notepad.
He then cocked one of his black eyebrows and commented:
"You and I really do have a strong love. I really don't want to lose it..."
"I love it when you do that thing with your eyebrow..."
They giggled together. It was kinda strange how he had red hair but black eyebrows. He said it was because he was Hebrew. He said that she was Hebrew too since he had the same thing.
"Hebrews have mismatched hair and eyebrows?" Elanor murmured sceptically. Mortic looked up.
"Not that I know of. But what do facts matter to a badfic author?" He paused for a few more lines. "This is all tediously boring, you know."
"Not to worry," Elanor pointed out, "we get another revelation! now. Look, she has stigmata."
"On her hands, feet, side... and back? What in...?" Mortic stared at Yeiweh. "Since when did stigmata affect the back?"
"Probably around the time God started dating teenagers," Elanor replied. "At least we get to hear her deepest darkest secret now, no?"
"I got ghost powers when I was 15... but this is different. I went to Egypt to study abroad before I went to college. There we went to Mount Sinai which is in the bible. I thought it was awesome since I'm so obsessed with Yahweh God. You know how obsessed with things I am."
"They've found Sinai now?" Mortic asked, bewildered. "Last I heard, they weren't sure exactly where it was. "
"Well, it's always a bit iffy," Elanor said. "I guess various people claim to know where it is, so..."
"Not a charge, then," Mortic completed. "That's a pity."
"Going to visit Sinai at age seventeen, though, might be," Elanor pointed out. "'Unlikely independence of movement', perhaps?"
Mortic scribbled it down, then blinked. "They have a staircase?"
Sure enough, a crystalline staircase had appeared in the space. At the top of it was a white door, through which Yeiweh and the as-yet-unnamed Yahweh were passing. "Yes, they do now," Elanor said. "Come on."
The Agents reached the door and slipped through it into a free-standing tent. Mortic blinked. "What...?"
"It's God's dwelling from the Bible," Elanor explained. "As she also says it should hold the Ark of the Covenant, that pretty much limits it to the Tabernacle-as-tent from the Exodus, and Solomon's Temple. I guess Causality decided that a full-sized temple as an attic would be a bit of a stretch."
"And yet it allows her to tell her story?" Mortic asked, disgruntled. "Eesh."
"I was with a group who was on a tour around Mount Sinai and being the smart person I was I wandered off on my own. I feel so stupid. Any who...the weird part was I found a door in the ground that had been buried in the sand. Curious, I open the door and go down...
It was so dark...I could hardly see. I got a torch nearby and climbed down the stairs. It was a LONG way down...but when I got there...there was a secret temple hidden there. I really wanted to know what this was all about. I eventually came to a door. I opened it...and there in the room...I saw...."
He stated, "The Ark of the Covenant?"
"That's not a statement," Mortic muttered, writing it down. "And wasn't the Ark of the Covenant stolen ages ago?"
"I think so," Elanor agreed. "And anyway, how likely is it that she'd have found this buried door?"
"About as likely as it is that she'd be able to touch it – open it, even – and not die," Mortic commented. "Oh, no," he corrected himself, "she 'already died once', that's how she got her ghost powers. Because that's Biblical."
The weird part was...when I looked over to the ark...it was all rusty and gross...but before it was golden and shiny and holy. Now time had really caught up to it. And then...it disappeared all together! I couldn't believe it! But I couldn't think about it because my head hurt really bad.
"Wait, it rusted?" Mortic frowned. "But gold..."
"Doesn't rust," Elanor confirmed. "That's why we- why they used it at Meduseld. Well, among other reasons. But no, it doesn't tarnish at all." She shook her head. "And it certainly doesn't vanish for no good reason."
According to Yeiweh's story, the entire 'hidden temple' vanished entirely once she left. When her group found her, they didn't recognise her, so she found...
"A pond? On the Sinai peninsula? How likely is that?"
"Hush, Mort," Elanor whispered. "She can hear you."
"Ha, she's too self-absorbed," Mortic muttered darkly. "I mean, I've been there. The chances of that are-"
"Completely irrelevant in a badfic," Elanor interrupted. "Just like the rules of speech. I mean..."
"I asked one of them if there was a restaurant nearby since I had some pocket money. This guy was all jumpy and I'm like [WhatThe ~Legal Dept. edit]? I just looked at him weird and said I was hungry. He then was still jumpy and led me to a kitchen. I was finally processing what happened while I was waiting for some food. I was like OMG. Anywho..."
Mortic winced. "That was... bad. As bad as..." He paused, listening to the next few lines, and then groaned. "Oh dear. So she changed her hair and eye colour, talked to a guy who could see through bandages, and..."
"The name of Yahweh was written on my forehead..."
She was silent for a while with her head bowed. She then continued:
"The people there said that Yahweh chose me. They said the sign meant I was His beloved and equal and that I was endowed with all of His powers. They said that He wanted me as He own. I was like wha? They then told me how my name was the same as his. They also told me I was the woman he loved."
"That... no. Just, no." Mortic shuddered, prompting Elanor to pat him lightly on the shoulder.
"How many charges can we get from that?" she asked. "Blasphemy, claiming godlike powers, altering the character of God, claiming to be a Chosen One..."
"You always know how to cheer me up," Mortic said, smiling wryly. "When shall we get them?"
Back in the centre of the tent, the Tetragrammaton appeared on Yeiweh's forehead. Elanor rolled her eyes at the dramatic display. "Perhaps when Maedhros-Yahweh reveals his secret? That should be enough of a final charge..."
"Then it's time to get going," Mortic replied, handing Elanor the charge sheet, taking a step forward, and waiting for his cue.
"I am Yahweh."
The entity claiming to be Yahweh transformed completely, becoming a powerful-looking young man in the garb of a king – unfortunately for the drama of the moment, this came out as the heavy robes of the British monarchy, for lack of any description. His huge white wings spread out, touching the top of the tent. The air was filled with the distant sound of trumpets and choirs, right up to the point when Mortic took a flying leap, grabbed both of the wings in his arms, and pulled Yahweh to the ground.
Seeing her chance, Elanor took a step forward and addressed the stunned 'Sue, Yeiweh. "Yeiweh of no last name, on my authority as a Protector of the Plot Continuum, I hereby charge you with the following: Failing to adequately describe the setting of your story. Turning God into a fashionless Maedhros-clone. Making up an awful name based on (one of) God's names. Creating ridiculous artificial angst. Being half-human, half-ghost. Seeking to marry God."
"A bit faster, please, El," Mortic called out, struggling to keep Yahweh pinned. "He's stronger than he looks."
Elanor nodded. "Misrepresenting Hebrews. Being tediously boring and repetitive. Claiming to have stigmata, and on your back as well. Having unlikely independence of movement. Having a tent as an attic. Abuse of the English language. Claiming to have found the Ark of the Covenant. Impossible coincidences. Dying and gaining ghost powers. Gaining power from the Ark of the Covenant. Causing gold to rust. Making things randomly vanish."
"I didn't do that!" Yeiweh exclaimed. "That was-!"
"Shut up," Elanor snapped. "Finding a pond on Sinai, using internet abbreviations in speech, blasphemy, claiming godlike powers, altering the character of God, claiming to be a Chosen One and misusing the Tetragrammaton. As a consequence of these charges, you have been officially declared both a Mary-Sue and a WhatThe, and by the power and authority vested in me by the Snowthorn of the Department of WhatThe, I hereby sentence you to death." She looked around for a moment. "Mort? Got a weapon?"
"No!" Mortic called back. "I thought you brought one!"
Elanor shook her head. "Oh, well, time to improvise." Looking around again, she picked up a heavy-looking metal item, which had presumably been listed in the Bible as needed. "Hey, Yeiweh? Say goodbye." Taking a quick step forward, she swung the item at the 'Sue with deadly accuracy.
Mortic looked up from the suddenly still Yahweh. "Good one, El," he said. "We don't have to clean up, do we?"
Elanor looked around at the mess of blood and other . "I certainly hope not. What do we do about him?" She nodded at the quiescent god. Mortic bit his lip.
"I don't know. I... yah!" Mortic leapt up, staring down in shock at the purported Yahweh God. The red-haired figure was glowing from within with a fierce white light that seemed to be burning through his skin. "What...?"
"Close your eyes!" Elanor exclaimed, bringing her hands to her face. "I think he-"
Even through his eyelids, Mortic could still see the blinding white flame as the body disintegrated, and was sure he saw a man-shaped figure ascending through the general glow. Then the light faded, and he opened his eyes cautiously to see utter darkness.
"Huh," said Elanor from behind him. "I guess he took the world with him when he left."
"I assume it was God, yes." There was a whisper of sound in the darkness that Mortic assumed was his partner shaking her head. "Job done, then?"
"And time to go home," Mortic agreed, pulling out the Remote Activator. In the pitch black void, the blue glow of the portal was dazzling.