Today was a celebration. By the decree of The-Sphere-That-Hates, it counted one hundred rotations around the Black-Iron star since last they danced in the bioluminescent light of the Skittering Palace. All who celebrated last century had passed from separate life into the singular flesh of the Sphere. Their bodies and souls absorbed so that they might be once more transcendentally reborn. For the little creatures, this was an exceptional, once in a lifetime pilgrimage.
Every little living creature, in reverence and joyful exuberance to the Goddess, gathered at the Skittering Palace for the celebration of their rebirth. They crawled and flew and dug their way atop, above, and within the flesh of the Sphere to reach the Palace. The Palace, an awe-inspiring insect larger than the largest mountain, rested gently as it awaited the arrival of denizens. Bioluminescent blood, pumping throughout the Palace for light, was gently bled outside in order to paint the denizens.
Denizens of a multitude of sizes, from no larger than half a meter tall to seven meters tall and just as long, made their way to be decorated with the blood of the Palace. Intricate designs and esoteric patterns were common, and the feelings of joy and celebration were not held back. Even the all encompassing hatred of the Sphere was nonexistent in this place, the joy of millions upon millions of denizens drowning it out. Here, among the many limbed Hunters of the Goddess, Her soft bodied servants, and the nearly innumerable celebration attendees, it was easy to become lost.
Mikulass had come through the front door. He had joined the festivities and allowed them to paint him in the luminescent blood of the giant beetle. He was keeping a tight leash on his emotions, trying to be as invisible as possible. It was a hard thing to do, with all of the emotions bombarding him from every side. He had arrived slightly late to the event, allowing the rest of the flock to arrive before him. He wanted to be separated from them, in case he was caught. They didn’t need to be wrapped up in this.
Mikulass had flown in, of course, for he was one of the winged ones. Currently, all six of his wings were tucked as close to each other as possible, minimizing his presence the best he could. It was hard to make yourself small when you were six heads tall and darker than the darkness itself, but he was doing his best.
At that moment, he was doing his best to skirt the party, all of the dancing bodies, and the luminescent lights. He could spot some of his kin out in the crowd. Some of them waved to him with a wing, gesturing for him to come over, but he kept going, making his way to the back of the Skittering Palace. As he got closer, he drew his wings in around his front, covering the paint, and once again becoming the night sky itself. He slipped into the shadows.
Getting past the Husks would be the hardest part of the whole night, but he had practiced on others throughout the last week of planning. He slipped in past them to the doorway, then pressed a wing tip to the shell, pressing open the carapace ever so slightly so he could squeeze into the room behind it.
Among all of the Goddess's children, the Husks were known to be the most despised. They were not despised by the Goddess, of course not, as She could not hate anything that She made. But Her children were known to be petty and petulant at times, for were not pettiness and petulance also an aspect of the Goddess? It was in this pettiness that they hated the Husks.
The Husks were shown favor by the Goddess, despite their heretical existence. They felt not the emotions of the Sphere that Hates, nor did they feel the emotions of those around them as they radiated and communicated. Even to the extremes of the hunt, where the emotional capacities of Her children were pushed to their limits in the righteous destruction of those-who-will-be-consumed, the Husks felt nothing. The Husks were known to hunt for no reason, to kill without repercussion, and to die without rebirth.
Yes, the Husks were righteously despised. So, at this time of great celebration of new life and emotion, the Goddess gave Her children a boon. A gift given without request and without thought of repayment. The Husks, Her greatest defenders, were dismissed from the palace for the Centennial Celebrations. As the aspect of Annihilation crossed over from one thronging party to the hall leading to Her room, he would be greeted with a gift.
The hall was immense, filled with pulsating lights and openly flowing bioluminescent blood. It was blinding to the creatures who saw in darkness, so bright no eye could ever adjust to it. It was only in the small areas of darkness, the corners of the room, the inner-lines of the furniture, and the crevices of the floor that sight could be gained. Unfortunately, even in what little that could be seen, it appeared as though She was not here. It appeared that way until the lights began to disappear. Blood stopped flowing, veins retreated under carapace, and music began playing.