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Story Notes:

Now, I am not naive. Well not entirely, anyway. I know if we see an X rating, we come expecting the see the goods and see them quickly. That's just fine. This story, however, is going to be very plot-heavy. Sex won't always be center stage, so if you came for giantess tiddies and ass, and only those things, there are plenty of other stories here to read. My pacing is probably slower than many other stories on the site, as I don't plan on this being a short story. I warn you now, so you can pass on by if it's not your thing.

*Some of the tags don't apply yet, but they certainly will in later chapters.*

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

Author's Chapter Notes:

***At this point, there is only the implication of giantesses, without any showing up yet. Pacing and all that jazz. Next chapter will likely have them.***


          Today is the day my dream comes true. Now, I know that statement just made all of you with a stick up your ass roll your eyes, but trust me when I say that my dream isn't your typical teenage boy fantasy. I'm not talking about some lofty aspiration that I set my sights on, like becoming a coal miner or some other prestigious member of society. If only fate liked me well enough to give me a quick death. Every night my dream comes for a visit, and every morning I hang myself, praying for release. No, my dream has been haunting me since the moment I forgot how to die.

          "Get your ass down from there and get yourself ready! Everyone is already out there!"

          My eyes snapped open upon hearing that grating voice. Vision blurry and unfocused, I tried to pinpoint where the squealing was coming from. My attention shifted as I sensed movement to my left, and my eyes focused on the intruder. Seeing who it was, I choked out what would have been a sigh had I been able to breathe, and closed my eyes. He could wait. Drakus, the bastard, was using his words again. I hate it when he does that. Every time he speaks, I feel like barbed wire is being used to clean out my ears. Unfortunately for me, he seems to have a fondness for making ears bleed.

          Wooden boards creaked as I heard his footsteps coming closer. I can ignore bleeding ears and footsteps any day of the week. Still, I haven't perfected my meditation techniques well enough to ignore being shoved by grimy hands. I opened my eyes as the world turned sideways. My arms flailed, trying to catch my balance. That instinct is a handy thing to have, unless you're trying to kill yourself. In this situation, it only made me look incompetent and spaghetti-like.

          "I don't know why I expected you act differently today," Drakus said, shoving me hard enough for my dangling feet to slam into the wall. I gasped as needles of pain shot through my legs.

          My obvious pain didn't even phase him. "Figured you would have come to your senses by now. No Caste of any note would welcome this cowardly display." 

          His words didn't bother me much, and the pain I could handle. I never cared much for our society's caste system, and you get used to the pain after trying to hang yourself every morning. What concerned me was the fact that I was now spinning as I dangled from my noose. I hate spinning. You may be bold enough to point out that, all things considered, spinning—a rather mundane affair—should be the least of my concerns, given the rope around my neck. If I were anyone but myself, such a statement would ring true; however, my soul appears to like this fleshy cage of a body. And that body, my body, forgot how to die.

          What does being unable to die have to do with spinning? Absolutely nothing. And that's the point. I get dizzy, and immortality doesn't do a damn thing for me when I'm puking my breakfast out. I could feel bile beginning to rise at the back of my throat. The only genuine tragedy would be all the wasted food when I threw up on Drakus. Still spinning, I choked as vomit tried to escape past my restricted esophagus.

          Drakus, to his credit, didn’t hesitate. Pulling out a dagger strapped to his hip, he made quick work of my noose, and I crashed to the floor, sucking in a deep breath. My entire body ached, and for a moment, I thought I might not spew my last meal everywhere. That thought died as Drakus looked down on me, a scowl on his face, and slammed his left foot straight into my gut. 

          Goodbye my sweet, delicious pancakes.

          I vomited half-digested morsels all over his feet.

          If my regurgitated food bothered Drakus, he didn't show it. That unnerved me. He has two moods, total indifference and blind rage, and I can never predict which one he'll be in. Every time I speak to the man, I say the wrong thing. So, laying on my side and covered in vomit, I closed my eyes and chose another option- silence.

          "I want you ready for the ceremony in thirty minutes," Drakus said. I heard him sigh, then he continued, "You may not care, but Rhia watches us all today. No one will tolerate a selfish brat who makes us look bad on her sacred day."

          My eyes opened wide as I felt a calloused hand grab my shirt collar before he lifted me back up to my feet. Still disoriented from the sudden movement, I staggered, unaccustomed to supporting my weight after hanging for an hour. Drakus reached out with one hand and grabbed my shoulder, steadying me.

          "There are things worse than death, Arsis. Don't forget that. If we don't see you on that platform with your peers, I’ll let the Church decide your punishment. I’ve heard they can get creative."

          His voice softened. "I never liked you, and I'll be glad to have you out of my sight, but I don't hate you either. See that you don't cause Rhia to revoke her blessing." 

          Well, damn. That was the closest thing to affection Drakus had ever shown me. Maybe he isn’t so bad.

          Feeling awkward, I said, “Um, thanks for your concern?"

          The man laughed. Then shoved me into the wall before striding out of my room.

          Nope, never mind. He's still a bastard.


          Thirty minutes later, freshly bathed and draped in ceremonial robes, I stood on a massive steel platform in front of the largest temple in the world. They lined us up shoulder to shoulder, all five hundred of us waiting for the ceremony to begin. There were thousands of Sunedi in attendance. I stood straight as a washboard, trying not to draw attention to myself or the bulge at my hip, hidden by my robes. I could do this. Today, my dream would come true, and this nightmare would end.

            Shifting my gaze from the crowd, I looked up towards the statue of our goddess, Rhia. She was carved from granite and stood over four hundred and fifty feet tall. Barefoot and wearing a simple dress that accentuated her natural poise and grace, she stood guard in front of her temple grounds. There was a level of detail carved into her hair that spoke of genuine craftsmanship. It hung loose, flowing down her back to reach her waist. Her face held a loving yet commanding expression- one glance at her, and you knew she would do anything to protect and lead her people. She could be seen from anywhere in our little nation, a constant reminder of where we come from.

          I’ve always wondered how anyone could have created something so perfect. The church tells us that Rhia herself carved the stone after she led us here to Sanctuary. I wonder if that is true?

          We Sunedi have few things in our lives that could be called beautiful. We are a people born of scarcity, and so we live by necessity. There’s no place for art in our world. We live and die as laborers, breaking our backs to keep the dome running for just a little longer. So, when I look upon Rhia’s statue, I can’t help but wonder why a being such as her, who personifies beauty and vitality, would ever care about us mortal men. What did we do to deserve her protection?

          I drew my attention back down as a figure walked before my peers and I. He looked to be around sixty years of age. Though he was dressed in the traditional robes of his station, it was his age that told me he was Cardinal of Sanctuary. Sunedi don’t live long. If our jobs don’t kill us, we’ll live to the ripe old age of fifty. Rhia’s Cardinal, however, lives to seventy. 

          Idle chatter ceased when the crowd noticed their leader arrive. He stood still for a moment, facing the masses, savoring the silence, before spreading his arms wide. The platform under me vibrated as two panels began sliding apart in front of our leader. A massive megaphone rose in the space where the panels used to be. Metal on metal screeching deafened those closest to the machine.

          Damn, it wasn’t that awful for last year’s ceremony.

          It took a full minute for the contraption to lock into place in front of the Cardinal. Ever prone to theatrics, he somehow remained in that ridiculous pose without budging an inch, arms still stretched wide.

          “Good morning, my fellow Sunedi,” the Cardinal began. His amplified voice, a soothing bass I could fall asleep listening to, echoed throughout the crowd. “Today is a day of change. It is the only day of change. With it comes the unknown. Life and death.”

          The Cardinal gestured towards the artificial sky. Towards our prison. “At all costs, we must keep Sanctuary alive by maintaining our labors as Rhia commanded us. We are the last of mankind. One mistake, and life itself ends!”

          I shuddered. This was playing out exactly like my dream predicted. My breathing became shallow, and my heart rate soared. The magnitude of my task settled on me. I should have ended myself before today.

          “That is why we gather here under our goddess’s gaze.“ The Cardinal paused, gesturing towards Rhia.

          “Change is her domain. She carries the wisdom that we lack, and on this day, as we have done each year for millennia, we allow the unknown into our lives. We do this under her protection. We do this to survive. Join me in celebrating another year of Sanctuary!”

          The crowd erupted into cheers and praise for our creator. Despite my growing anxiety, I smiled. I, too, adore our goddess. Seeing the last remnants of creation worshiping her touched me. I felt something on my cheek. I raised my hand, touching my face. Was I crying? I don’t remember the last time I did that.

          Rhia. Goddess. Why are you making me do this? Can’t you see that they adore you?

          The sermon continued. “Today, we bid our eldest members of society farewell. If it wasn’t my place to guide you into her arms, I would join them. I envy those who leave this world to be in Rhia’s presence. We must make room for the next generation, for with them comes vitality and strength. This is not a final goodbye. Though we may not recognize their faces, our new children carry the souls of those departed. Without this reincarnation, we would have ended long ago. This is Rhia’s greatest blessing!”

          I stopped listening. The Cardinal wasn’t saying anything we didn’t already know. The old is made young. This is why no one lives past fifty. We sacrifice ourselves to serve the nation. We cart off the old folk towards the edge of Sanctuary and wait for the gate to appear. In return, she provides an equal number of newborn males. No one understands why, but only those called by Rhia may pass through it.

          Around a thousand years ago, some idiot Cardinal thought they could try to prevent the ritual. They forbade anyone of age to pass through the gate. Terrible idea, that was. Without the sacrifices, they didn’t receive newborns that year. It was a colossal disaster. The elderly ended up getting sick and died anyway, never having their chance at reincarnation. Because the gate only opens once a year, we lost an entire generation of laborers. Not only that, but the Cardinal himself grew ill and died. No one was ready to replace him. The void in leadership almost led to civil war. Never again did we miss a sacrifice.

          The crowd roared again, snapping me from my thoughts. Ah, I guess the sermon is over. My heart pounded in my chest. Nothing could calm my nerves now, and I missed my chance to back out.

          “Youth of Sanctuary!” The Cardinal turn around to face us. “Are you prepared to take your place as a member of the Sunedi workforce? Are you ready to guide your forbears to the gate?”

          We could only respond one way. Five hundred voices sounded as one.

          “Yes, your grace.”

          “Let us march then!”

          And so we marched to the gate.


          The Cardinal led us down off the platform in a single file procession. We headed straight for the crowd, and they parted as we grew close. As we traveled passed the people , I made eye contact with as many Sunedi I as could. If I do this, I’ll damn well make sure I never forget these faces. They were dirty, still grimy from their labor, but a current of excitement flowed through them.

          I looked to my left. Perched on an older man’s shoulders, a boy who couldn’t be much older than five was waving at me. His smile was bright and full of innocence. I couldn’t hold the boy’s gaze. Guilt overwhelmed me. Shifting my eyes towards the ground, I continued walking.

          I’ll admit, I almost ran off into the crowd after that. My nerve was failing me. What if my dream wasn’t from Rhia? What if I was just going mad, hallucinating a false prophecy? I knew I was just looking for any excuse to change my course. I had ten years to work through those doubts, why should they plague me now? It was too vivid, too real, to be anything but a direct message from my goddess. Shaking my head, I brought my attention back to my surroundings.

          Rust coated just about everything I could see, from the steam-powered factory just beyond Rhia’s statue to the coal miner's barracks on the other side of the dome. Mechanical beasts of burden stood next to a few men. Together, they were the farmers who kept us fed, doing their part to sustain our community.

          There are stories about animals, ones who had flesh and bone just like the Sunedi. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Flesh makes us different from the land and brings us under the great goddess's protection. I’m not willing to share that. It’s said that they once lived among us as part of our community. We labored together but also ate of their flesh. Simply put, we were barbaric. Those days are no more. That was before the land was poisoned- before Rhia led us to Sanctuary.


          That’s what we call our home.

          Sanctuary is dying. It’s treason to say that out loud. Looking at the eyes of the surrounding men, I can tell they understand. Today’s excitement is a brief escape. I see their fear, their hope, and their determination. They know that even if today goes as planned- we are still a dying people. Our machines are becoming unreliable, and we’ve lost the knowledge to repair them. Our harvests grow smaller each year as the soil fails us.

          The procession slowed as we passed under Rhia’s statue. Grouped together next to her right foot stood this year's sacrifices. This close, it was difficult not to marvel at the size of Rhia. Her big toe was about as tall as a grown man. Imagine if beings that massive existed. The thought was both terrifying and comforting.

          The elders remained still as we approached, watching us with interest. These men were ready to pass into their next life. They weren’t wearing any ceremonial clothing. Instead, they wore the uniform of their respective caste. They were to die as they lived, ready to serve the needs of our nation.

          Ahead of me, the Cardinal gestured for the sacrifices to follow us. We continued walking, and as we did, a sacrifice would pair up with someone from my generation. I was towards the middle of the procession, so I could observe the reactions of my peers as the older men paired with them. Most appeared uncomfortable. Others embraced their Elder, both men seeming to take comfort in the embrace.

           When it was my turn, I just nodded to the man, saying nothing. He smirked but didn’t break the silence. I matched his stride and followed those ahead of us. We had been walking for at least five minutes before my curiosity got the better of me. I shouldn’t, but the man was about to die. He wouldn’t be telling anyone anything.

          I turned and asked, “Do you believe that Rhia will really save our people? That she knows the future, and it’s her hand guides us towards brighter days?”

          He looked surprised by the question, but shifted his expression to one of contemplation. The man met my gaze for a while, saying nothing. His eyes were slate gray, a change that comes to those about to pass on- they unnerved me. I felt the weight of his scrutiny upon me as he decided how he would respond.

          “Will knowing my opinion change what you believe?”

          “Well, I supposed not, but—”

          “But what?” He asked. “If what I say changes nothing, why ask?”

          Caught off guard, I answered with the truth, “I ask because I want to know if I will be forgiven by my people for what I am about to do.”

          Shit. I shouldn’t have said that. Maybe he wasn’t listening and didn’t hear the implied treason.

          The old man grinned. “I thought that might be the case.”

          Fuck. I’m screwed. We’re screwed.

          Wait, what did he say?

          “Huh?” That was all I could manage. What did he mean? He knows. But then why aren’t I being dragged off in chains to await bloody torture?

          The Elder broke out laughing. It was a deep laugh, one that I rarely hear, a full-blown belly laugh. I guess my confusion is hilarious. Did I miss something? I glanced around, worried someone might overhear. The others were lost in their conversations. Thank Rhia.

          I turned back to my senile companion. “Elder? Are you okay?” I asked, more out of shock than genuine concern.

          He waved me off, his laugher fading. “Yes, lad. I am more than fine. You should have seen your face, all serious and melodramatic one moment, and then wham!” He made a fist and punched the air in front of him. “You looked like you couldn’t decide whether you wanted to tackle me or faint.”

          At that, he placed an arm around my shoulder, pulling me close. He whispered, “You didn’t think Rhia would make you do something so insane by yourself, did you?”

          “But I never dreamed of you. In my dreams, I stand alone,” I said, still confused. How did he know? Did Rhia show up to him too?

          Rhia? If you can hear me, please tell me what the hell is going on?

          My prayer remained unanswered as the Elder spoke, his tone playful, “I think you forget that Rhia has a sense of humor. She had no reason to show you everything, just enough for you to play your part in this. Where do you think the explosion will come from?”

          “Explosion? Wait, I thought that would be just a coincidental accident? Do you mean… you? You’re the one who sets it off?” I stared at him, disbelieving.

          “Oh, it’ll be an accident, all right,” he said, grinning. “I’ll accidentally hit this here detonation switch.” He pulled out a small cube the size of his palm. “My fingers tend to slip in my old age.”

          Despite the gravity of our conversation, I couldn’t help but smile. I wasn’t alone.

          “Don’t think I ever got your name?” I asked.

          “It’s Orion.”

          I held out my right hand. “My name is Arsis. May Rhia damn us both for what we are about to do.”


          Orion and I were silent for the rest of the walk. There was nothing more to say. It took the better part of a half-hour to get to our destination. All one thousand of us stood before a massive steel wall. Machines hummed around us as they performed essential maintenance on the structure. Massive pipes, their diameter twice the height of a man, ran down along the wall of the dome, one end vanishing beneath the ground. Every so often, steam would hiss out of a pipe, evidence that our semi-autonomous machines couldn’t keep up with dome repairs.

          My anxiety had eased after meeting Orion, but it came back full force the moment the Cardinal turned to address us. Did he know what Rhia planned for him? On the verge of panic, my hand brushed against my hip. Good, it was still there.

          “Elders of Sanctuary,” the Cardinal began. “You know what is to come, so I will make this brief. Each one of you is here today because you earn it. You worked hard for the good of the nation. Now is time for you to rest. Give Rhia my regards before you come back to us. Thank you for your service. That is all.” 

          He turned his back to us and began to summon the gate.

          His voice was thunder as he bellowed, “Oh, goddess! Great Rhia. We come to you, as we do each year, to give of ourselves so we may receive your blessing.” The Cardinal sunk to his knees and spread his arms wide. “We lay ourselves at your feet. We dedicate ourselves to your glorious name. Please accept our offering of love!”


          Others from my generation looked around, wondering what went wrong. Then it happened. A vertical line of blue light rose from the base of the dome wall. It continued to rise until the line was around one hundred feet tall. Then the gate ripped open. Blue light filled my vision, blinding me. It sounded like fabric being torn, but on a cosmic scale. It was as if the universe itself was being ripped open.  For all I knew, that was precisely what was happening.

          My eyesight returned after a moment, but my words failed me. The gate looked like the surface of a radiant blue lake, its beauty reminding me of Rhia. It was purity itself, and it called to me.

          “It’s like nothing you’ve ever seen, isn’t it?” A voice behind me said.

          I jumped. Turning around, I saw Orion standing there, enthralled by the light of the gate.

          “Rhia’s tits! Don’t sneak up on me like that!” I didn’t stay mad long and answered his question. “It’s unreal. My dream never came close to what I’m feeling right now. It’s like an all-encompassing peace just washed through me.”

          Orion smirked and looked down at me. “You should know better than to use the goddess's tits as a curse right in front of her, boy.”

          Before I could respond to that, he asked, “Are you ready?” All signs of mirth faded from his expression.

          “I think so,” I lied. I would never be ready.

           The Elders began to pass through the gate. I turned around to ask Orion something, but no one was there. He had vanished.

          “I guess he’s ready,” I mumbled to no one in particular.

          When I saw the last of the Elders vanish, I made my way to the front, getting as close as I dared to the Cardinal. I knew I should be panicking but I somehow remained calm. If it weren’t for the weird energy radiating from the gate, I would have wet myself by now.

          The newborns appeared. One at a time, at first. Then, as if some spell had broken, hundreds crawled through.

          Rhia, why? How could you ask this of me? I pleaded to my goddess, knowing she wouldn’t answer.

          Tears fell down my cheeks as my hand went to the weapon at my hip.

          Then the world exploded around me.


          Everything became chaos. The blast knocked me to the ground, and I fought to reign in my senses as I remembered what I had to do. I tried to orient myself, but smoke filled my vision and all I could hear were the screams of my brethren.

          “Orion, where are you!” I screamed.

          He didn’t answer. Rising to my feet, I started walking forward, hands stretched out in front of me as I stumbled along. The explosion had come from above, raining dust and debris down on us. It wouldn’t kill anyone; still, I found it difficult not to panic, my body unable to comprehend what my mind already knew. This was just a distraction so I could perform my duty.

          My brothers weren’t trained to handle situations like this yet, and it showed. They ran to safety, shoving me aside as they fought to be free from the ash and smoke. I barely noticed them, my thoughts focused on the task at hand.

          Ahead of me, I heard the cries of an elderly man. The Cardinal. My pace quickened, knowing this nightmare would soon end. As I approached, the smoke cleared just enough to make out the form of Sanctuaries leader. He lay on the ground curled up in a fetal position, hands clutching his right leg, where something protruded at an awkward angle. Hearing me approach, the Cardinal looked up, his expression changing from panic to relief, doubtless assuming I had come to help.

          “You, Boy! Oh thank Rhia, you’re here. Hurry and help me!”

          I saw why he wasn’t getting up. Skewering his right leg and buried deep in the ground was a broken pipe, three-quarters of an inch in diameter. His hands were covered in blood, clenching around where the steel and his leg met, struggling to keep the blood from pouring out.  How he was still conscious, I did not know, and I was grateful for it. He deserved a chance to make his peace.

          I knelt down next to him, just out of his reach, and said, “Greetings Cardinal, I don’t know if you know me, my name is Arsis.”

          “I don’t give a damn what your name is boy.” His breathing was labored, and agony gripped his voice. “Get this damned thing out of my leg so I can take care of this mess!”

          I did not grant his request. Instead, I asked, “When you became Cardinal, did Rhia speak to you?”

          The Cardinal’s expression turned from one of agony to fury.

          Venom laced every word as he said, “You overstep your place, boy. Question me again, and Rhia will cast you down. If you won’t help me, begone and fetch someone who will.”

          It was the conviction in his tone, self-righteous and arrogant, that sealed his fate. I knew he did not have Rhia’s blessing, but I needed to see for myself the depth of his blasphemy. The Cardinal was not a god, nor should he speak for Rhia. His place was to lead us, to guide us towards her perfect will. Never should a priest of Rhia claim to command her power as this man had just done.

          Closing my eyes, I took a deep breath, hardly noticing the burn in my lungs as smoke filled them. “I understand now why this must be done. Forgive me, Rhia, for doubting you.”

          “What are you talking about?” The Cardinal asked, panic creeping into his voice. “I am your Lord! Answer me when I speak to you. I will ruin your-”

          I didn’t let him finish. My right hand went beneath my robes to the weapon at my hip. Opening my eyes, I aimed it at the blasphemer’s chest and fired. A beam of light the size of a man’s arm shot from the muzzle of my makeshift phaser. The Cardinals flesh exploded in a cloud of red mist, leaving nothing recognizable behind.

          “Holy shit.” I didn’t expect it to work so well, considering my “phaser” was just a laser welder I modified after stealing it off a maintenance machine.

          Still shocked, I shook my head, hoping to clear my mind- there was more to be done today. Trying not to vomit, I passed the bloody mess that used to be Sanctuary’s leader, and walked closer to the gate, closer to the wailing children. Ash still hung in the air, but it no longer obstructed my vision. There was no looking away from this.

          Newborns were sprawled everywhere, all of them still alive, the glow of Rhia’s gate illuminating their tear-stained faces. It broke what was left my heart. The world faded around me—all I heard were the cries of the innocent, pleading for help. This was the end of my dream, Rhia’s divine purpose for my life. Born for the sole purpose of killing these children, I am nothing more than a mean to an end, a tool to be used by one greater than I. 

          Raising my phaser, I left my Sunedi nature behind and became a knife held in Rhia’s cruel hand.

          All became silent.

         They would never cry again.

         I sank to my knees, arms hanging limp at my sides, exhausted. Empty. This nightmare was over at last.

          “Will you let me sleep now?” I knew she wasn’t listening. She never did anymore. “Your will is done, and I am tired. Let me rest.” Lifting my bloody phaser, I pressed the muzzle beneath my chin, its heat searing my flesh. The pain was welcome, allowing me to feel something, if only for a moment.

          I pulled the trigger, and everything went black.

Chapter End Notes:

This is only the second story I've every written, and I never finished that first one... whoops. So this might as well be my first. Anyways, feel free to critque 

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