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Rated: E · Short Story · Fantasy · #2228529
Entry for the August Round of Newbie Contest Challenge- I do not qualify for judging.
Vessel, the word could mean so many things. For Antonia, it had taken on a sinister meaning when she met Rufus. His offer had been more than tempting, power, money, fame. All he wanted in exchange was one small thing, a tiny corner of her soul. He didn't want to own it. He hadn't couched the offer in the same terms as a devil's bargain. I swore she would not end up in hell just because she agreed.

Antonia itched that small corner of her mind that tingled with The Presence. It always stirred as she approached the stage. It hungered for the adoration of her fans almost as much as she did. Tonight she wasn't expecting much adoration. Outside the worst blizzard in fifty years blew against the light posts of a nearly empty parking lot. She listened to the last few bars of her introduction music and the energetic if unenthusiastic intro from her manager. He couldn't see why she was bothering to sing.

She really couldn't not sing. The Presence had stirred when she entered her dressing room and would offer her no peace if she didn't perform. The audience consisted of the bravest few of her true fans and the somewhat larger number of world wrestling fanatics that had been snowed in. They showed about as much enthusiasm as her manager.

Antonia danced out onto the stage with her arms held high, flashing peace signs. Thunder shook the building. That wasn't normal for a blizzard. The Presence within stirred to a level of attention beyond explanation by Antonia's fans. Antonia felt it reaching for control of her body. Rufus had warned her this might happen. He didn't explain why or when, but in her agreement to be its vessel, Antonia had agreed to relinquish control in these circumstances. She balked at the idea of letting The Presence have its way, but it already had seized the reigns.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, Thank you faithful few for coming despite the small impediment of the weather outside!" The Presence used Antonia's lips.

"Not like we had a choice!" One of the wrestling fans in a sleeveless t-shirt shouted back, "Our bus took off early and we were left behind!"

"Alternate transportation is being arranged..." Antonia's manager growled over his mic.

The Presence stirred in affirmation. Antonia's eyes locked on one of the wrestling fans dressed in biker leather. He was wearing sunglasses in the dimly lit audience. Antonia was hit by the strangeness of that, just before he clapped his hands together, "Enough of the playacting! I know who you are and you know me Javid!" The words were pitched so only Antonia heard them through the loud thunderclap that rocked the coliseum.

The Presence dropped the microphone and leaped from the stage. Antonia's fans and the majority of the wrestling remnants backed away as though she projected a bubble ten feet from her body. The fans standing around the biker stepped away by an equal distance from him. A passenger in her own body, Antonia wondered just how this would play out.

"Giden, It has been a long time! Have you decided to return home?" The Presence, Antonia now knew was named Javid, asked.

"I didn't draw this storm! I think you wish to return!"

Javid smiled with Antonia's lips, "I leave only when you do! I won't have you wreaking havoc on these cattle!"

Electric sparks spread from Giden's fingertips as he raised his palms to aim at Antonia. "We shall see."

Javid held up Antonia's hands. Her fingertips drew in the power Giden projected. It was like the most potent drug Antonia could imagine. Javid drew the power faster than Giden could project it. Soon Giden crumbled to his knees spent, outside the storm raged with an intensity that shook the building.

"Old Friend, it is time we left!" Javid said merging the bubble of empty space with Giden's. Antonia's right hand rested on Giden's shoulder, her left marked a wide circle in the air, stirring a pool of energy which opened a gate to somewhere beyond Antonia's understanding. An orb of light passed from Giden's host through the portal, the orb of Javid's presence followed it. There was a deafening crash of thunder followed by a blinding flash of lightning.

When Antonia opened her eyes, she was standing on the stage staring out at a packed audience. The band behind her was finishing the last chords of her last set. Antonia took a stunned bow and realized for the first time in years that she was now an empty vessel.

765 words

Entry for the August Round of Newbie Contest Challenge- I do not qualify for judging.

August's Prompt is "The Vessel"

Remember the word vessel has many different meanings, your vessel could, of course, be some type of ship, but it could also be a container or perhaps even a person.

also an entry for Anthology Project 1a

August Prompts :
          CHARACTER: Singer.
          PLOT: What was left behind.
          WILD CARD: Set your story during the worst storm in fifty years.
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