Interview with Honmosia
The reporter looked around the room he was led into. It was sparsely furnished, with wood and paper walls, a low table in the center, surrounded by cushions. To one side sat a large cabinet, with an old Maiti helmet sitting on top of it, with the scarily designed face mask. The reporter leaned to one side, then back, glaring down the helmet, as it seemed to follow his movements. The door on the far side opens, and the Goddess Honmosia steps in. Her long black hair is hanging down low, just below her waist. Her purple eyes focus on the reporter, and she smiles, bowing to him. "Greetings, I trust your trip was satisfactory." Her deep, sultry voice washes over him, and he tightens his tie, gulping slightly. She didn't phrase that like a question. "Quite so, your Majesty. Your people were quite accommodating." He sees the smile grow a little more, before she straightens up, an almost obligatory smile on her face. "Please, sit." She gestures to the table, before taking two long legged steps, and kneeling down, sitting on the cushions. The reporter takes a seat across from her, setting his briefcase on the table between them. The Goddesses head doesn't move, but her eyes watch him closely. "This is quite an opportunity, your Majesty. I hope you understand I brought along a decent number of questions." He says, pulling out a small recording device, and a sheaf of papers. She nods. "Of course. It has been a great many years since I have allowed an interview." The reporter pauses, holding a microphone in his hand. "You've done interviews before?" "Oh yes," She nods again, brushing a lock of hair out of her eyes, "Though it was probably a thousand or more years ago." The reporter looks at her in awe, then snaps back to reality, placing the microphone in front of her. "Please be sure to speak directly into the microphone, otherwise it won't be able to pick up what you say." "I understand." "So," The reporter flicks the record button on his recorder. "Please state your name." "I am Honmosia, Goddess of Honor, leader of the Maiti no Jōnetsu Shogunate, The Great Dragon, defender of the Islands, Champion of the Garakuta. You may simply call me Honmosia, Mr...?" "Björn Schild" "Mr Björn." Her smile increases for a split second, then returns to the fake smile. "Does my name remind you of something?" "An old friend of mine" The reporter nods, looking at his papers. "Are you ready for the first question, Miss Honmosia?" "I am." "We'll start this off easy. How old are you?" "I am just around Fifty thousand years old. Give or take a few rotations." "Pardon, did I hear that right? Fifty thousand?" "Yes." She nods once, to punctuate her point. The reporter blinks, then jolts down her answer on a notebook. "Next question. What sorts of things have you done to change the world?" The Goddess thinks for a second, her crab arms clicking quietly behind her back, as her hands rest on the table. "I have done a lot in fifty thousand years. There is a lot to choose from. From both war, to small things. But I think what I'm most proud of, was rescuing a young boy during the God's war, a thousand years ago. His country and god had been razed to the ground. We found him living in the jungles of what is now Stepmorian territory. Well, I say young boy, he was about 25. We..." She smiles genuinely. The freckles on her face becoming more noticeable as she blushes. "We married during the war. He lived to the ripe age of 89, before Death took him from me." "I'm sorry for your loss..." "I know that the people I love won't live as long as I will. I've grown...accustomed to it." "That actually leads into the next couple of questions. How do you cope with the weight of the knowledge that as an immortal, any attachment to mortals that you make will always be temporary and it will always be you experiencing the loss? And how do you feel making friends knowing that you’ll live longer than them, that, in the grand scheme of things, those friends won’t be around very long." The Goddess sighs heavily, rubbing her forehead. "You don't have to answer, we can just move on..." Björn says, preparing to switch papers. "No, I'll answer." Honmosia sucks in a breath, then begins speaking. "To be completely honest, it's sometimes hard to cope. I've been around for the entirety of creation, except for my own. I've been married, I've loved, hated, lost, gained...so, so many people since then. Each one is still fresh in my mind. My love for those I've married, or even had any type of relationship with is still within me, but I've learned how to move on. I know that's what they would've all wanted. Even those I never thought I lost, I did." She smiles a little sadly. "It's been called survivors guilt. I guess that's a good term for it. I cope by knowing that they would've wanted me to continue. Even if, some days, it's really hard." Björn nods, carefully transcribing each word down. Honmosia sniffles and stands suddenly. "Are you hungry? Thirsty?" He looks up, seeing her eyes shiny. "I would love some tea, if you have any." She nods, stepping away. Björn waits quietly, staring at the quickly scribbled words on his paper, thinking over what the Goddess said. The sound of a door sliding open and closing brings him back, as Honmosia sets a tray down on the table, and pours a liquid into a small cup, handing it to him. "Thank you, Honmosia." She smiles and pours her own. "What is the next question?" "How powerful are you?" She suddenly laughs, a deep, throaty sound. Björn jumps ever so slightly, watching her facial expression. She calms herself to quiet giggles and wipes a tear from her eye. "Ah, yes, well. I am powerful enough that I could end the universe with a snap of my fingers. But, I don't think the creator, or my fellow gods would appreciate that." Björn gulps again, taking a sip of the warm, soothing tea. "I cannot say I blame them." She nods, and looks at him, waiting for the next question. "How do you fight an enemy?" "I stab them." She responds quickly, with no hesitation. "I believe the question was more, how do you actively prepare and combat your enemy, instead of what you do when you're face to face with them." "Oh, yes. That makes more sense. Well, its been a while since I've fought directly on the battlefield. But when I lead my forces against Stepmor a thousand years before, I would always have a recon group go out and scout for enemies, followed by an infantry push. Back in those days we didn't have the mechs we have now. We had old tracked tanks. So we needed to make sure the infantry cleaned up any tank traps. The way to win a battle is with intelligence, and cunning. A much smaller force can out fight a larger one if their commanders know what they're doing." Björn nods, tapping his pen on the table. "Why am I the way I am." The Goddess smiles, leaning a little closer to the mic. "Because that's the way the Creator made you. He wanted you here for a reason. No one is perfect, but we're all perfect in his eyes. Don't lose heart, your time is coming. No matter how bad it may seem now." Björn smiles, recalling how Ellara said something similar in her word. Shaking his head slightly, he focuses back to the current task. "We use the label ‘god’ for many powerful beings? What exactly is your status, as you see it? Are you uncreated, or created? If you are uncreated, what makes you different from other uncreated beings? What gives you your essence? If created, who or what created you, and for what purpose?" "Ah, a lot of people wonder about the deep things of life, do they?" Honmosia smiles. "Yes, I was created. My status is being the God, or, if you would prefer, Deity of Honor, that is what the Creator intended for me, so that is what I do. I didn't wake up one day with super powers. I was hand crafted, and I've always had a drive in the back of my mind." "That actually opens up a couple questions." "Of course." "Who defines what honor is? If the answer is 'I do', then who gives you the right?" "Everyone defines honor in their own way, no matter what I say or teach. For example, if you asked a Stepmorian what honor is, they'd say dying for the Emperor. But, in a way, I do define what honor is. The Creator made me for that purpose, what right do I..." She pauses, shaking her head. "No, let me rephrase that. What purpose would I have, if I ignored that? Sure, I'm allowed to define honor as I see fit. But there's always been something there...sort of telling me what honor should be. Doesn't mean I have to follow it. But it's there to help guide me. As for who give me the right? You do. You don't have to listen to my teachings. You can do whatever you want, but the people who do listen? Those are the people who give me the right." "What is honor to you, and how do you define it?" "Honor is following a code of conduct, not breaking from it. Honor is treating those worse off than you with respect and helping them. I believe honor is closely related to Morality. Maybe that is why Ellara and I get along so well, since what we do ties closely with each other." "Honor is expensive, is it worth it?" "Absolutely." Honmosia puts her hand down on the table, leaning forward to look at Björn. "Giving your life for someone you don't know is the highest form of honor. Offering the ultimate sacrifice to protect the honor of the downtrodden, or the unknown? It's worth it. Not compromising for what you believe yet being understanding of others. That's worth it." "What is the ultimate honorable fight against an enemy?" "Putting your all into the battle. Respecting your enemy, even though he is not your friend." Björn nods, picking up his cup and taking another sip of tea. "What does the prayer on your blade say?" She smiles, patting the hilt of the sword sitting on her hip. "Loosely translated: Those who fall to me, and my blade. I pray your afterlife is calm, with no trauma. May you die honorably, and live with honor in the heavens of your god. The words hold less meaning in common, much like you Heimatwelters and your war cries." Björn laughs. "I can't say I've ever had the pleasure of calling one, but yes, that does make sense." "I am rather enjoying this. This is the most I've talked about myself in a long time. More tea?" He smiles, nodding and pushing his cup forward, as she fills it he speaks. "I must say, this is new for me. Not many people can say they sat across from a Goddess." "You are not wrong. Shall we continue?" "Ah, yes." He franticly flips papers, finding another question. "Do you need a companion? Is it lonely up there?" She pauses, then chuckles quietly. "I do have a fish, and yes. I wouldn't mind a companion. But, sometimes, yes. It is lonely, though I don't live in the sky." She winks, and leans back from the mic, picking up her cup. Björn feels his face heat up, and a desire to move to the next question. "U-uhm, next question. What is your favorite food, and can I...take you out to dinner?" Björn looks closer at his notes as Honmosia laughs again, covering her mouth with her hand. "I thought this was a professional visit, Björn." "I-it is, I swear." He nervously fiddles with his tie again. "Well, my favorite food is something I make myself. So unless you're a really good cook, I'll be taking you to dinner." She continues giggling under her hand. "I don't think I'm ready to give up my cooking secrets." Björn nods rapidly, finding another question, quickly trying to change the subject. "What hobbies do you indulge in?" "Oh, I love doing wrestling. Even though very few people will take me on. I also enjoy dressing up and going to festivals, taking my ship out into the bay, and going to drink with Ellara." "Drinking, like, tea?" She snorts. "Not at all. Hard stuff. Mostly stuff she makes." "You drink a lot?" "Tons. I've got a whole room of my home dedicated to booze." She smiles, pulling a small flask out from the folds of her kimono. "It's hard to find me without something to drink." Björn chuckles lightly. "Good to know. Next question." He pauses, looking at his paper in confusion. "Happy...birthday?" She pauses, then starts laughing, slapping her hand on the table. Her chest heaving, she forces herself to calm down slightly, still chuckling to herself. "Ahh, I love people like that. I don't even know when my birthday was, but I appreciate the thought, thank you, random listener." She smiled, and Björn couldn't help himself, smiling as well, before looking down to his papers. "Is the Corset real? How does one get it? And how do you get it back from those who have it and die?" She sighs ever so slightly but continues to smile. "I figured I couldn't escape this forever. Yes, the corset is very, very real. Yes, it has some of my power, many times more than what even a Heimatwelter can draw from Ellara." She taps her belly lightly. "What I wear is nothing more than something fancy that helps me. The actual corset is hidden somewhere. When I find someone I deem worthy, they receive it. All those who say you need to have a one-night stand with me, or marry me, or whatever are wrong. It's my choice. Some of my spouses haven't gotten it. Sometimes, just a friend of mine will, like Shattered Obsidian. It's called Honmosia's Corset because it's related to me. But I've never actually worn it. As for how I retrieve it? Magic." He nods, jolting more down. "What power does the corset have?" "It depends on the user. Sometimes it makes them faster, sometimes it increases their combat ability" "Increases their combat ability? Like, makes them punch harder?" "In some cases, yes. That's all it does. Other times, it pulls from my magic. Honestly I can feel it." "How would it pull from your magic?" "Like...Obsidian could summon a massive amount of...phantom rifles, that would increase her firing capacity to those of entire armies." "Incredible..." Björn muses, leaning forward. "She could hold the power of an army?" "Yes. She used to be able to hold off entire battalions by herself. It was amazing. Even I was impressed. But, Stepmor was not, they focused their efforts on her, and captured her. A report from one of my spies told me she was...executed." The Goddess sighs, then smiles. "I hope her end was peaceful." The reporter is silent, letting Honmosia relive the past, before clearing his throat, causing her to look up. "Oh, sorry. Did I phase out again?" "It's alright, take all the time you need." "No no, I'm alright now." She opens up the small flask and takes a sip. Björn can smell the strong booze from his place across the table. "Ask your next question, Mr Björn." "How should I live my life?" Honmosia leans forward, once again getting close to the mic. "Well, I can't fully tell you how to live your life. As you should live it to the fullest, and that fullest is how you see fit. But I can tell you to abide by the highest rule of Honor and Morality; Treat others how you desire to be treated." Björn nods, flipping pages. "What is your vision for the future?" "My vision? A world where everyone is free. No one is forcing their ideas on anyone. Where we can all live in harmony." "You were pretty quick off the line with that." "It's all I've ever wanted." He nods again, watching the goddess take another swing of her drink. "How do you treat your soldiers?" "Like, medically?" "I believe they meant more like, how to you treat your soldiers, while speaking to them." "Oh. Well, the training is hard, and a lot of people wash out. Some come back after toughening up, others don't. After the training, the soldiers are integrated into the military. Once a year I get the privilege of standing before all those who have completed basic throughout the last year and congratulate them. It's a multi-day festival" "That sounds like quite a sight." "I'll send an invitation the next time we have one." "I would appreciate it." Björn picks up the last piece of paper, looking at it closely, and sighing, muttering under his breath. "I swear to Ellara..." "What seems to be the problem?" "All of the questions are...very personal." "Well, we can't just ignore them. Go ahead!" "First question, I guess..." He sighs, rubbing his eyes. "How did the left side of your face get damaged?" "Oh, I took a sword to the face." "Pardon?" "Yes. I was chasing this murderer through the underground, when I lost sight of him. I came around the corner to get a blade into my face." She moves some of her hair, showing that, from the top of her skull, all the way down to her forward front eye, there was a massive scar. "It got stuck in my skull, so I snapped it and shot at him." "Did you get him?" "I didn't. A Heimatwelt Gesetzeshüter Streife officer assigned to the Kern shot him with a shotgun, when he tried to take a woman and her kid hostage." "How long ago was this?" "Oh, probably around forty four hundred years ago" "Do you think there are any records of it left over?" "Likely. There might be some in the great library." "I'll have to look before I return to Heimatwelt. Next question: Do you...uh, need a mechanic for your weapons or other things?" She smiles. "Are you asking, Björn?" "I-I believe the person asking the question is asking." "Well, unfortunately the answer is no. I like fixing my own things, though. I wouldn't mind the intellectual company" "Oh, this one is normal. The world is a difficult and challenging place. Trying to remain a good person is increasingly difficult. As the Deity of Honor, what advice would you give me to help me when I waver?" "Stay true to yourself. Hold close to your morals and hold close to your honor. You are the only one who can decide if you've lost your honor. Not anyone around you. The world is tough, yes. We've got enemies and monsters running amok. But if you continue on the path of Honor and Morality. I would suggest reading up on the books of Morality, and Honor. But, once again, I cannot tell you how to live your life, I can only offer my advice." She smiles, rubbing the back of her neck sheepishly. "I feel like I'm rehashing the same thing over and over again." "You're doing great, Honmosia. Next question?" "Yes." The goddess pours the remaining amount of her flask into her teacup, then fills it to the top with tea. "May I have a hug?" Honmosia chuckles, taking a sip of her drink, and putting it down. "You would be surprised how many times I get stopped on the street, and its a young kid, or a Chōrō, or a teenager struggling their way through school. So yes, if you see me, you are more than welcome to ask me for a hug." "You're never going to get anywhere, everyone is gonna stop to hug you." "I can be everywhere at once." "I wish I had that skill." "Most people do." "What is one thing you would tell your followers?" She taps her finger on her chin, then snaps her fingers. "I remember, one day, probably about fifty years ago, I met a young musician, named Kimbel Icious. He gave me a tape of one of his songs, it was an old marching song from one of the fallen countries, recorded on an organ. At the very end he said something that I still remember to this day, and I want all my believers to hear it, and know how much it meant to me. 'Thank you for being, thank you for listening, remember you are loved.'" She smiles fondly at the memory. "I still listen to that tape now and again, even though Mr Icious is long gone. It makes me smile every time." "That is a wonderful story..." Björn wipes his eyes, and clears his throat. "May I touch your claw-" "No." Björn raises an eyebrow, his mouth still forming the last sound. "I apologize, Björn, I didn't mean to snap. But touching a Garakuta's claws is very similar to feeling someone up. It's something only lovers get to do. Of course there are accidents, on the street or in battle. But without reasoning, no. No one may touch my claws, or anyone's claws." "I understand, I apologize if the question made you uncomfortable." "Oh no, I just wanted to nip it in the bud, so to speak." "Of course. Next question: Do you have any advice for women?" The Goddess smiles, and leans close. "Aim small, miss small." She snorts quietly, leaning back. "In all seriousness. The best advice I have, is don't settle. If you are alone, and find someone who spends time with you, but is a jerk in other ways. Don't settle for them. Don't accept it as 'who they are.' I've seen to many people make a life ending mistake because of that. It goes both ways, but. That's what I have to say." "That is good advice, for everyone. Just two more. Who...was your favorite lover?" "Oh, easy. I once was married to a Shayedian man. He was very sweet and simple. Wasn't into a bunch of the fancy stuff of the time. Back then, men wore some...interesting clothing. Not Zaki. He wore animal hide clothing, an a very pretty scarf, which I still have. It wasn't how he was in bed, or how much he got me. He just enjoyed me for me. That was back, oh...probably twenty three thousand years ago." "Last one, and I'll let you have your time back." Björn puts most of his papers away, looking at the last one. "Can you teach me to be a badass like you?" "No, I can't. Because you, and anyone else are not like me and I don't mean in power. You are a badass in your own right. Why would I need to teach you?" She smiles. Pushing the mic away. "Thank you for your time, your Majesty." "Please, just call me Honmosia. I really enjoyed this." She offers her hand across the table to him, in a common Heimatwelt gesture. He smiles, and takes it, shaking it slightly. "I'll be sure to send you a manuscript when I return home." "I would appreciate that, thank you." Björn stands, bowing deeply to her, and leaving. The four purple eyes of the goddess following him, even as he closes the door behind him.