Kefnek, the Black Wolf of Wjera and the new Violet Lord of Prismatta was grumbling and sipping piping hot coffee through a metal straw when He stepped out of the elevator into His executive suite. Despite being an "evil" overlord, and having a reputation to uphold, the one-time human had not bothered to change out of the loose-fitting, oversized shirt He had stolen from His dire wolf of a spouse. The bony surface of His wolfish, skull-like face gleamed in the light of the balls of green fire which had replaced His eyes not that long ago. The light of the rising orange star and the setting blue filtered in through His half-open blinds.
Was it that late already? Yazleeni would no doubt count that as a win, but it was hardly a sacrifice on His part to remain in bed snuggled against her soft, dense fur. The day, however, waited for no one, not even Him.
As had been true since day one, a plethora of morning reports awaited His attention. They were stacked in a neat pile on His desk, with all manner of tabs sticking out of the tower of pages. He had no idea who brought them, or even how they were created. The only things He was sure of were that the stack of intelligence would always be more than four inches thick, that its data and conclusions were usually spot on, and that the documents would probably continue to come whether He looked at them or not.
His pointy, wolf-like ears rotated down in annoyance then the fallen paladin turned god laughed with a sound that was more of a bark than any human noise--which only made Him laugh more. It had been weeks since his unintentional... merger with one of Vozlik's wolfish daughters, but Kefnek was still finding new aspects of the resulting transformation entertaining. Out of everything, the biggest annoyance was His muzzle. It made a challenge out of drinking with any dignity, not to mention a fair number of other things. However, there was something genuinely fascinating about having an additional range of expressions provided by the ears He had gotten from being bonded to the huge wolfwoman who was still asleep in their private chambers.
Sitting down in His high backed chair, He sighed. Had He known becoming one of the Prime Factors entailed so much paperwork and order, He might have thought twice about becoming a god--but, then again, probably not. Being the ruler of an entire stripe of existence was way too enticing a feat to accomplish. The ambitious lord had not hesitated to take up the Death God’s violet mantle after His predecessor had been slain while mortal in the few days of weakness every century. After centuries of unchallenged dominion and cruelty, the moment the Celestial Wheel stripped Him of his divinity, the last Death had been utterly destroyed by the ogres who did most of the day to day work for the Violet Edge of Reality.
Putting down the ceramic cup and picking up the first bundle off the stack with fingers which ended in manicured claws, Kefnek considered the report. His flame-emerald eyes darted back and forth as He scanned line after line of information about how things were going in the cities on the Oran Plains. The Violet Lord glanced past the pages in his hands at the rest of the pile. It was apparent each packet had just as much to say about elsewhere in Prismatta--and for good reason. Throughout the realm, the chaos from the ensuing changes to the status quo was starting to settle. Of the seven stripes, previous deities had held three. The other three had, much like the Violet, flipped to new leadership. Somehow, His Sister, Julinei had overtaken the Green. It seemed like She was doing well as She reformed the Church of Strength which She had once championed.
There was a knock on the doorframe of His corner office. Kefnek looked up from the nearly incomprehensible mass of statistics and timelines, which followed the main brief to see His lieutenant standing in the doorway. The hulking, orange-skinned ogre betrayed no sense of unease about standing in the presence of divinity as he dropped into the chair across the desk from Kefnek. Despite everything that had happened in the rebellion, the neigh indestructible manifestation of earth and spirit looked as impassive as he had the day he ceded his claim to the mantle to the fallen paladin. Most notably, he was still pretty much naked aside from a finely embroidered loincloth and his long, sweeping braid of ichor-black hair.
“Mornin’, m'Bones! We gotta situation goin' on that you probably ought to know about…”
Kefnek forging a partnership with the ogre had been the best decision in His lives. After inevitably fighting each other to a stalemate, they agreed to form an alliance, and none of the others who had been vying to become the Violet Lord could stand against them. It got the ogres on His side as well, in exchange for agreeing that Ginkynn would be allowed to lead his people with a reasonable amount of autonomy.
“Anything to avoid these slagging reports," Kefnek said, putting the report back on the pile. "What is it that I need to know about, Ginkynn?”
“Well, strangest thing, m'Darkness. There’s a paladin, or maybe even something more than that, who arrived at the citadel gates this morning and demanded she be allowed to bring someone back from The Violet to The Green.”
“Was her request for our... surprise guest?”
Convenient. “You’re telling me my Sister’s order sent a rescue party?”
“That seems to be the case, y'Deathness, but it's odd. Our intrusive paladin was unaccompanied when we finally subdued her trying to climb over the wall. She insisted she had no companions, so how did one warrior make it this far alone?”
“A single paladin fought all the way here from The Indigo River? Alone?"
Kefnek hummed. "I know they are the Church of Strength, but that seems like... overkill."
"You can friggen say that again, y'Boneship. It took ten of my best men to take her down, and they barely managed. Overkill is practically this woman's whole sense of being."
“Oh, I have to see this.”
In the dungeons far below, Yspera stirred to wakefulness. The bricks around her let off a soft purple glow, but their murky light contributed more to the sense of gloom than resolved it. The point was, it was dark, and everything ached. The chains binding her chafed her biceps and forearms, but they felt like a formality. The room itself pressed in around her on all sides. The ceiling was against her traps; the walls squeezed her shoulders, knees, and butt. Even if she had the stamina to fight on, she could not have mustered enough movement to utilize her strength in an attempt to break out.
“I guess they don’t make prison cells for people my size…”
It was hard to shake the feeling this was no more than she deserved. The veritable barbarian-paladin was disappointed in herself. She had made it so far and yet, had not been able to rescue Priestess Leylana. At least it had taken ten ogres to stop her. The hulking warriors from The Violet had been the first real challenge the Yspera had faced since The Goddess Julinei's benediction, and subsequent ascension had transformed her into this rolling bolder of a woman. Maybe she would request a trial of combat to see if she could manage to disable one of the supernatural entities.
In the distance, she heard the creak of a door being opened in the gloom. A torch moved closer. She looked down through the bars to find a man who might have come up to her hips had she been standing. His face, seemingly replaced by the skull of a canine-like creature, was turned up to look at her with burning green eyes of flame. An ogre from the earlier scrap accompanied him.
“My lieutenant tells me you fought all the way here from the border–alone. I couldn’t believe such a thing was possible, but I can see now how you could manage such a feat. I didn’t realize someone could get as big as you are. Just how tall are you, hmm?”
“I am seven and a half spans, My Darkness. Your sister, My Strength, was a bit… enthusiastic with Her blessing when it came to consecrating me. I was her first acolyte, you see. I was there every step of the way as she consolidated her claim to the Jade Shawl.”
"And her ascension no doubt exponentially increased her, ah, enhancements to your being, yes?"
"You have no idea, My Darkness."
“Well, each of us has our challenges as neo-divinity,” the Death God said with a shrug. “I can attest to that. Now, what can I do for you, Champion of Strength?”
“I came seeking Priestess Leylana. She fell into a manifested projection during mass two weeks ago, and witnesses said the portal had lead to The Violet.”
“So you thought she had been abducted? Is that why you single-handedly cut a swath of devastation through all the denizens of the Violet?”
“Oh, no, I did that for fun. I wanted to see how far I could get before I was granted an audience.”
The new God of Death shook his head. “It is astonishing how you can say that so purely. As if waging a one-woman war was merely going for a run.”
“Isn’t it though?”
“You really are Her disciple, aren’t you? Look, champion, I have a crucial operation to run here on the edges of reality, and I need to keep things running smoothly.” The skull-faced man snapped his fingers, and Leylana was suddenly standing there.
The paladin looked at the Death God. "You’re just going to let us go?”
“Hardly. While I’d be just thrilled to release your priestess and return you both home, nothing is free in The Violet. Even if she isn’t dead now, we had to make a place for her unexpected arrival. That is an amount of time and resources which cannot be recovered, but I am a generous God, and I can forgive that so long as I receive some manner of recompense. So, tell me, what do you wish to trade for Leylana?”
Yspera’s heart ached. “I apologize, your Darkness, but I brought nothing of value with me.”
“I’m not so sure,” he glanced over at Leylana while raising a hand as if measuring. “Priestess, would you say this one’s overabundant strength is quite valuable?”
“More than can be given with any mortal measure. Her power is a gift from–”
“Yes, yes... I know who my Sister is,” He said, waving His hand before turning back to face Yspera. “Well, champion, there you have it. I have an incalculable expense, and you have something of equal value.”
“I would make that trade in a heartbeat," Yspera said without a trace of hesitation "I would happily wish to be the weakest woman in the world if it meant securing Lady Leylana’s safe return.”
“Then it shall be done!”
Leylana gasped “No, wait–!”
Yspera flinched as a thunderous noise crashed over her, and a great brightness obscured her vision. The next thing she knew, she and Leylana were standing together on the windswept hills outside of Helvas. The paladin was shocked to find herself unchanged. She was still most of the way to eight spans tall. Her hundreds of pounds of sculpted muscle still rippled under her bronzed skin. She could still feel the divine blessing which made her even stronger than she already appeared to be.
“Yspera," Leylana gasped as she ran a hand down her companion's washboard stomach. "You’re still–I don’t understand. I thought you–oh!”
There was a sudden, audible gurgle and then Leylana shot up to Yspera’s height in the span of a breath. Her stretched-out-looking frame trembled, causing her to moan. Then that sound of pleasure deepened as whatever was affecting the priestess added a few more inches to raise Leylana's height to over eight feet tall. With a cascade of popping noises, her build began to broaden. Her muscles began to twitch and swell visibly; their mass growing in hastening pulses as the veins under her skin began to rise.
Awestruck, Yspera could only watch with increasing arousal as the woman of her dreams became something far more...
Below, further down in the valley, there was a rumble. Tearing her attention away from Leylana’s burgeoning musculature, Yspera's gaze landed on a barn just before a huge fist burst through the roof, and a colossal woman emerged from the ruined building. It was hard to say how tall she had become because of distance, but the cleric remembered that barn being two spans taller than her. Even with a handful of acres between them, she could almost feel the woman’s muscles growing larger than her own. Beyond, in Helvas, was the same situation playing out over and over as the effect of her wish spread? Were women were growing into scions of physical strength one after another?
“When I wished to be the weakest I… I had no idea this would happen! This is simply amazing!"
Leylana tentatively touched her shoulder with a hand large enough to engulf Yspera's thick muscles. "It really is..."
Back in The Violet, Kefnek and Ginkynn watched the chaos spreading throughout The Green as every single woman in the center of the world grew more powerful than Yspera had been to fulfill her side of the trade to release Leylana. Kefnek had known that Yspera's strength being a divine gift meant that He could not take it, but He had not imagined the magic would affect Prismatta so... powerfully. He grinned and elbowed His lieutenant.
“You know, me doing this? Maybe now my Sister will forgive me.”
"I wouldn't count on it, m'Darkess. In fact, I'm sure you might never hear the end of this...”