This is a flash fiction (meaning it has to be less then 1,000 words) I wrote with a prompt from Chuck Wendig's website, Terribleminds.com. The only thing I had to go off of was a list of settings, and I chose the Tower of Babel. This is what I came up with. I hope you enjoy it.
A blow shook small shards of rubble from the walls. “How long until the Tower is ready, Kammani?” Nidnatum asked as he raced down the hall. When she turned to answer, though, the Architect stumbled in an attempt to stop himself. Kammani’s face was its usual, vibrant self, but there was something off. A glaze over her eyes, a subtle twitch in her cheek maybe. It wasn’t hard for Nidnatum to realize what had happened.
“No sense in hiding,” he called out. “You’re here somewhere Raphael. I’d like to face you if you’ve undone all my work.” No one answered, and for a moment Nidnatum stood fuming in silence. But eventually he could hear an echo of footsteps behind him. Turning quickly, he saw the angel of his undoing.
Raphael’s smug smile burnt smoldering holes in Nidnatum’s heart. “I can’t take all the credit, but I am responsible for Kammani. She was kind enough to let me in.” Raphael reached the woman, who had been watching with a childish curiosity out of place for someone with her wisdom. The angel brushed a hand against her cheek and stared into her dull eyes. Her gaze immediately flicked over to meet his, and her expression morphed into a corrupted look of admiration.
“For an angel of healing your machinations are quite wicked,” Nidnatum spat. Raphael let out a laugh and looked pensively past the Architect.
“When one has a penchant for healing the feeble, it’s not so hard to enfeeble the healthy,” he said finally. “But it’s only a glamour, for now.”
The pressure of Raphael’s ego was immobilizing, but Nidnatum found the will to break free and move again. A slow pace brought him around to his nearby desk.
“So then, this is torture before I’m killed?” he asked hunched over his work station, arms spread wide on the transparent polymer.
“No,” a voice boomed from down the hall. Oddly, though, there was no strain behind the sound – it was as if the source had been standing right behind him. Nidnatum recognized who it was.
“And here I thought you were lost in Greece,” Nidnatum said with a sneer. “Manage to stay out of the Box, Yaweh?”
While there were no footsteps like with Raphael, the Architect could feel Yaweh approaching. “I needed to remain unnoticed so you felt confident enough to let your guard down. You might have predicted my movements earlier, but this Tower to Heaven doesn’t speak for your sense of subtlety.”
“A Deus hiding form a Human,” Nidnatum laughed. “A Nephilim maybe, but never a Human.”
“It won’t matter in the end,” Yaweh said, passing behind the Architect to stand near Raphael and Kammani. “You won’t be remembered by history and this Tower will be a failure. The Heavens will stand and I will use the very technology you developed to bring it down to scatter your people for millennia.”
Trying to go unnoticed, Nidnatum fiddled through the papers on his desk. “And why must we be scattered?”
“Why did humanity feel the need to batter down the gates of Heaven? Your ambition is no less dangerous than Satan’s, but I could not put you all in the Box with him,” Yaweh said.
Nidnatum couldn’t find what he was looking for on his desk top, so he opened one of the side drawers.
“Well you created us to be your slaves – your playthings,” Nidnatum said. “We aspired to be something more.”
“You aspired to overthrow us,” Raphael said, interrupting. “To drag us down to your level.”
Nidnatum shook his head. “We aspired to be equals. You just didn’t like it.”
“Did you honestly expect us to let you walk onto our doorstep without retribution?” Yaweh asked.
Nidnatum didn’t bother answering – there wasn’t much time left. They were about to circle back to the beginning of their conversation and Raphael wouldn’t let Yaweh forget that. The Tower would be coming down if he was to fight alone, but not before Nidnatum would try to execute his plan. All he needed to dispatch the only people in his way was right –
“Ah,” the Architect whispered, tightening his grip around a smooth, narrow cylinder. With this he could –
“Please, Nid,” Yaweh cooed suddenly from right beside him. The God’s gentle hand was placed on his own, and Nidnatum couldn’t move. “You know I can’t let you do this. By going so far you’ve forced my hand.”
Nidnatum’s mind was a blurry haze that had been wrested from him. Yaweh, who held the reigns, compelled the Architect to stand and walk with him to a nearby window. It was a slow stroll, but through the cloud Nidnatum saw an endless crowd of people, his people, charging into the Tower to do what he assumed was stage a rescue. It was the grandest sight he’d seen in his life.
“Watch as I cast your people down,” Yaweh said. “Humanity will never reach this height again.” The God turned to his angel and gave the command. “Raphael.”
Standing over Kammani, the angel only had to mumble in her ear before she uploaded a program into the Tower’s mainframe. A groaning sound filled Nidnatum’s ears and he could see a glow coming from the outside of the Tower. He knew Yaweh had repurposed the Tower to target humans instead of his kind, but what would the it do now? Not remove the Deus’ immortality as he’d intended.
At the groaning’s crescendo, he saw the crowd at the base being blown away in droves, driven into the skies beyond the horizon. In his own head there was a terrible screeching that doubled him over. When he’d recovered, Yaweh knelt next to him and placed a hand over his ear.
“Now, Nidnatum,” Yaweh said with perfect solemnity. “Hear how your people have been divided.”
In an instant the screeching was replaced with a roaring cacophony of gibberish. Completely incoherent, the sound burrowed its way into his mind until Nidnatum knew he could never remove it.