Interview with Abaddon by Amphitrite Seadaughter, defender of mages
My old adversary trails his fingers in a pool of lava, shuddering with pleasure as he soaks in the power of the earth before swimming to meet me in a thick stand of kelp.
I can’t hide my disgust, but the vaunted leader of the Pacific Ring doesn’t care. Abaddon grins and sinks onto an algae-strewn boulder. There’s something menacing in his dark eyes but he won’t hurt me and both of us know it.
“So.” His smile broadens. “You wanted to discuss my energy habits? I had no idea you cared. I mean, I know my behavior troubles you. You’ve made that no secret.” He waves his hand, stirring up a small current. “But to come all this way for a little chat? Tritey, I’m touched.”
I cross my arms. “Your thugs are lurking around TIDES. I won’t have it.”
“Oh, they’re just there for the night life in Kira Cove. They won’t be any trouble.”
“Really? I was under the impression that they leave a trail of muck everywhere they’ve been. I won’t bother asking why you swim with such scum. You made your choice long ago and I, mine.”
His face hardens and a tendon in his jaw twitches.
“What are you afraid of?” I demand. “You think your cronies care about you? You’re all alone in this ocean, no matter how many hooligans follow you around.” I bite my lip, hoping I haven’t gone too far. I just can’t help it. With Abaddon, my words sometimes get ahead of my good sense. One of these days, I’ll end up goading him into blasting me. Who knows if I’ll survive, depends on how mad he is.
Something flashes in his eyes. At first I think it’s his power, itching to come out and burn me, but then I’m not sure.
“What makes you think I’m afraid of anything?” he asks.
“Aren’t we all?”
He brushes a bit of kelp out of his face, singeing the broad leaves. “The things I used to fear are meaningless now. Death. Loneliness. Pain. No one can frighten me—I have nothing to lose.”
His hollow gaze bores into me and I look away, into the depths of the murky forest.
There’s silence for a moment then his fingers spark. “I only have myself to fear.”
My eyes stray to his glowing hands and I can’t help but flinch. “Why are you trying to take over the Pacific? Aren’t the Graveyard Seamounts enough?”
Abaddon shrugs and stops flickering. “Why not? Who wouldn’t expand their power if they could? What more could anyone want?”
His tone is bitter, so I press him. “You tell me. What is it you want?”
Abaddon leans forward, his expression hungry. “Freedom. Absolute and total freedom.”
He topples his chair with a kick then swims away.