Yahweh walked through a wheat field in the southwestern part of the Jezreel Valley, restless.
He had not stayed much longer in the other Valley, "His" Valley. It had been entirely too disturbing. A scene for which He had no script. He could not recall any other time in which He had felt this way - at least, not in His true memories. Those other, false memories were still coiling through the back of his brain, serpents in the grass waiting to strike once trodden on.
He had needed to get away. So He came here, to the place once called Megiddo, where the Armageddon war would be fought. Would still be fought.
Because these events changed nothing. Everything that was to transpire would still transpire. He may not have reckoned on having so many powerful, alien opponents, but he was still the one true God. He still had a vast army of angels, an army that dwarfed any other in the history or imagination of man. He still had his Locusts, the things the Foundation called 098. He had all those and more.
And on top of them, He had His Horsemen.
He had planned to summon the First Horseman to the unnamed Valley, before he'd been derailed, and this valley of Megiddo would do for now. The others He could simply approach the way He approached everyone, up close and personal, but… not the First. Yahweh felt no need to countenance the evil done to the First with His holy presence, not even though the evil had been done by His own followers, not even though they had wrought their evil for reasons they thought to be good ones.
Yahweh stood in the middle of the wheat field and spoke the First's name.
And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.
The young woman lay restrained on her bed, watching the IV drip hooked up to her arm.
She had spent most of her life in this bed, she knew, since the age of nine. She was now in her late teens, though she wasn't sure of the year. She had forgotten so much. As to who she was… Well, she had also forgotten her name long ago. The people who came to see her called her SCP-231-7.
She heard a voice in her head.
Awaken, my child. Rise up and walk.
The blocks in her mind, the blocks designed to keep her power contained, if only barely, all fell away at once.
Birth pangs stabbed through her. She screamed, louder than she ever remembered screaming before.
There were no klaxons to blare at 231-7's unnamed holding location. But there was shouting, and panic, and people in identical uniforms and explosive collars flooding the room. "Containment breach!" "Restrain her! Restrain her!" "Initiate emergency procedures!"
But it was already much too late.
SCP-231-7 - Conquest, the First Horseman of the Apocalypse - had never been pregnant with a literal child. She had been pregnant with… herself. There was no better way of putting it. She had been containing her own power, and it had been building up, stronger and stronger, honed in the fires of a thousand extended torture sessions that should have broken anyone beyond repair long ago.
Because of this, it took her only seconds to give birth, and then, to ascend.
Her eyes burned like white stars. In a moment, the network of scars and bed sores that covered her body vanished. Her skin shone brilliantly, with a light beyond light, almost liquid. A robe that flowed like water and gold fell across her shoulders as the old hospital gown dissolved. A circlet of fire ignited in a halo around her head, set with a dozen pinpricks of gem-colored light.
The men surrounding her dissolved in a flash of white light.
She remembered her sisters. Now all dead, whether by the fumbling of the Scarlet King's children and the fumbling of the Foundation after them. Rough drafts. Nephilim. She remembered where she had come from, and why. She remembered "Class A Amnestics." She remembered…
She remembered everything.
Yahweh was startled momentarily — a foible of His human body's fight-or-flight response, to be sure — when Conquest appeared in the wheat field out of nowhere. She was not wearing her illuminated clothing, but rather an ordinary t-shirt and jeans, contrasting with her shining flesh and burning crown.
She was without her Steed, the sleeping foam entity which once awakened could blanket a fourth of the world in its collective. Instead she was accompanied by a translucent floating creature, all eyes and tentacles, swimming in its own personal cloud. An atmospheric jellyfish.
"Your Steed…" Yahweh began.
"I found one I liked more," Conquest said. She patted the cloud-jelly's side. "It's white, isn't it? It does eat people, sometimes, but right now I'm not sure if I care." She hesitated. "I can speak so well. I can't remember the last time… well, I can now, actually. So is this part of my power?"
She was angry, Yahweh could tell.
"My child," He began, "it is time to forgive the Foundation for their transgressions—"
"Don't talk to me about the Foundation."
Yahweh was torn between becoming angry over her disrespect in interrupting him, and tolerant of her reaction to her liberation. She had been held by the Foundation for quite a long time… perhaps He could afford to be indulgent…
"I'm not angry with the Foundation," Conquest said. "I'm angry with you."
The venom in her tone made His brow furrow in aggravation.
"They didn't know what they were doing. Thought they were saving the world. But you… You could have told the Foundation what I was. You could have just taken me away from them. You could have done something." She paused to take a breath. "Even just a word to O5-14… But you did nothing. Do you — of course you do. You know exactly what they did to me. You know every last detail. And. You. Did. Nothing."
Yahweh frowned. "How do you know about O5-14?"
She just looked at Him. "That's it? That's what you have to say?"
Yahweh sighed. He had no time for an argument. Not right now, not after the ordeal in the Valley. "Answer my question."
"You have no idea how much power you gave me, do you?"
Now He was angry. "Regardless," He said, "You are Mine, and you will obey."
"I don't think so."
He stared at her, flabbergasted at her gall.
"I'm not going to be your Rider," she said. "I don't belong to anyone. Never again. You gave me a whole lot of power and… I'm gonna use it."
Then He read her mind. He didn't actually intend to, no; He did it without thinking, to find the answer to His question. He was about to wipe her from existence. Not a harsh punishment, all things considered, if she was not going to be cooperative.
Or He had been about to wipe her from existence. Until He read her mind, and saw everything that was in there. Everything that she had ever felt, thought, experienced.
And Yahweh did nothing.
Conquest looked up at the stars. "I think… I think I'm gonna go explore the universe," she said. "I don't know when I'll come back. Maybe in a few million years. Maybe never. It doesn't really matter."
Conquest rose into the sky with her cloud-jelly companion. No flash, no pomp, no fanfare; she just simply flew away, ascending towards the clouds, and through them, and past them.
Yahweh watched her go. He did not try to stop her. He watched her until she was a pinprick in the sky, and kept watching until she vanished completely, leaving Earth far behind.