• Vol. 03
  • Chapter 03
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Their shadows outlined their black, flowing robes, Clotho, the ancient web weaver held the lines of ages taut, halted by the child's decision; his ready eagerness to at least try to save the life of the girl even though he couldn't swim. Lachesis stood at the end of the jetty, flipping a coin, it pinged and toppled, momentarily reflecting the setting sun; Atropos, the Inevitable had left her web cutting shears at home.

'This modern fate lark doesn't quite have the - the -'
'...the finesse?'
'Next thing we know we'll be trusting in only One God, then we'll all be out of business.'
'Disaster - like back in the day.'
'So what now?'
'50-50 - he can't swim.' They all gasped, delighted. The young boy faltered; pulled back.
'Don't you miss the snip of my shears?'
'Come to think of it I do and the resignation on their faces...'
'...and the power trip - to decide on a mortals fate.' They all sighed in unison.
'Let's at least bet on it one way or another. '
'I mean, only one can live. '
'No doubt.'

The boy crouched lower, the last piece of fear hanging on for dear life in his big toe.



'Heads - he dies.’ They all nodded. The coin landed as the boy became a wobbly, underwater visage, all streamline, like a dart thrown true from the hand, the coin, end over end, landed with a dull thud. Lachesis hovered like the grave: Tails.

The boy held the girl by the torso and was pushing her out of the water, her lungs more than ready to receive air.
She gasped.
She lived.

The two struggled back to the jetty and climbed out, laughing with relief. The Moirai hung back scowling, sure they could hear Zeus chuckling from the sky. The Age of the Fates was over, a new age claimed sovereignty, where a mortal could decide to live or die, could over-ride something a deep-set as fear for trembling love. The wind scattered the three women to the far corners of the earth where they may still reign with a light touch but the North was never held by them again and mortal man was free to conquer the ice, snow and thin air just because he chose to, without fearing the sound of the shears.