Not-So-Random Writing Prompt 17: By Age, By Sickness, By War, By Justice, Pt. 4

Death saw everything. Everything. But it did not need to see to do its holy work. It simply knew what to do and when. There was only one thing to do. It and its brothers had each been appointed a single task each, and Death oversaw them all, ensured that their vices and their indulgences all had the appropriate outcome. They destroyed and they sickened and they starved as they saw fit. Sometimes they worked together, Pestilence developing some new disease for War to turn against its prey, Famine greedily following as War cut a bloody swath through lands that should have been fertile, Pestilence turning its attention towards crops that should have been productive and giving them over to Famine’s insatiable appetite.

But though they ignored Death, they served its machinations. All things serve Death, it knew, and Death served all things.

Even John, fallen to his knees, tears welling in his eyes, mouth agape at the horror before him, was served by Death, it knew. But this was not the human’s appointed time. And a good thing, too. There was too much to do to trouble itself with a single life seeking dissolution before its appointed time. Its brothers swept the world, driving men to kill each other, women and children starving in the wake of the fighting, disease festering in the corpses that lay strewn upon the ground. It moved its many hands, and like a conductor leading a grand orchestra, it pointed and it gestured and the people fell.

John wept.

Silence, please. You’re distracting me.

The words drew a gasp from John, echoing inside his head, turning his thoughts into a flock of shrieking birds flapping desperately away from their roost. If his half-choked sobs had distracted this demon, this spider of bone harvesting the world with its many terrible limbs would surely destroy him for daring to speak at all. He waited in silence for his annihilation, but Death paid him no mind. But why

It is not your time.

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