354/365: A Game of Chance.

The Meeting of Raven and Coyote was tense, at first anyway, and I thought there would be some serious scrappin' to be seen. My instincts weren't off...but I'm getting ahead of myself. Hit the jump to see the whole story.

It happened on the eve of the Winter Solstice. Raven and Coyote, face to face once again, after untold years; Raven out for blood, and Coyote on the defensive. Instead of a fight, they set up a table and pull out...a backgammon board. I guess the rules of engagement between our animalistic demigods dictate something less climactic than all-out war. Well, it made sense, actually. A Gentleman's Game, on the Winter Solstice, under a full moon? I can see how these two old pagans would be into that, but still. Watching the game, I was hoping for more action, and soon found myself bored to tears.

355/365: A Clear Victory.

But as I watched, I witnessed nothing less than the total annihilation of Raven, by Coyote. The dog was kicking the bird's ass. Victory was close at hand, and I started to think that with the defeat, Raven would have to be on his merry way, and I'd be stuck with Coyote till spring break, at least. Crazy, never knew Coyote could play so well, but then again, it's really just how the dice roll, right?

356/365: Cheaters Never Win.

Whoops. I spoke too soon. Apparently Coyote, that old Trickster, can't help but cheat if he thinks he can get away with it. Not sure if it was animal spirit magic, or just a pair of loaded dice, but Raven called him out on it before the game was over by abruptly tossing the whole board in his face, and standing up to reveal that he was indeed packing some heat. His sword was out in a flash of moonlight...wait, the moon. The moon seems to be darkening on us...

357/365: Sword of Raven.

Holy shit! Raven pulls out this freaking blade and starts slicing the air like the Samurai Chef. After this quick warmup, he starts moving in on his opponent. I back way up, certain that we're about to have a headless Coyote on our hands. Note to self: don't cheat against Raven.

358/365: A Good Defense.

Again, I spoke too soon. Where he kept them till that moment, I do not know, but all of a sudden Coyote is wielding some shit straight out of Teenage Mutant Ninja Dogs. Is this how they used to roll? Feels more like feudal Japan than ancient North America. Ok, now we have some action on our hands...but damn, something is going on here, it's getting darker and the light is turning funny. I'm starting to get the creeps.

359/365: Battle Royale.

What started as a simple game of backgammon has now escalated into an all-out ninja slicefest. I'm watching this transpire, my mouth agape, looking around for some other witness to start placing bets with. The night has turned bloody red, the moon darker and darker...

360/365: Locked in Embrace.

Raven came down on Coyote like a lighting bolt. Throwing up an x-block to stop his skull from being cloven in two, it sounded like thunder as they clashed. He stopped the killing blow, but Raven was bearing down, and had the high ground...and then, just as and it was looking like Coyote was about to break, and it would be ended, they finally saw what they had missed as the battle ensued...

361/365: A Rare Event.

The eclipse had reached it's peak, as had the battle, and as both the demigods saw it and knew it for what it was, they released their death lock and dropped their weapons. Call us old-fashioned, but like me, they apparently believe in omens. There hasn't been a full lunar eclipse on the Northern Winter Solstice since 1638 AD, and they both were around for that one. Seeing it, they instantly knew that they were not meant to come together to spill each other's blood, not this night. They stood and watched the ruddy glow till it began to lighten again, then they walked together, into the forest, without another word. Since that night, I haven't seen them, and we had a party the next day, and they never showed up. Very strange though, I think I can hear music coming from deep in the woods...no, that's gotta be the wind. Right?