In the beginning, there were seven Gods. The gods were of Despair, of Hope, of Fury, of Calm, of Imagination, of Logic, and of Life. Their names were Denal, Otte, Mandes, Cepa, Nim, Rin, and Ampe. These seven gods constantly fought amongst themselves, tearing holes in the cosmos and twisting time. They fought and fought, about nothing really, but still they fought. Denal, the God of Despair, fostered the growth of darkness in the universe and Otte, the Goddess of Hope, the growth of light. Mandes, the Goddess of Fury, aimed to burn everything to ashes, and Cepa, the Goddess of Calm, wished to douse those flames of anger. Nim, the God of Imagination, and Rin, the God of Logic, fought about disputes of the mind, philosophical issues, not that it had any purpose, neither could be proven correct or incorrect; they were gods. Ampe, the Goddess of Life, fought internally whether to stop these godly conflicts, knowing full well that she may be slain by her brothers and sisters if she tried.
One day, a sound came from one of the planets in the universe. It was the sound of a living being. Something that had not been burned by Mandes' eternal flames or washed into complacency by Cepa's calm waters; it was a being who had not been tainted by the pain and anguish of Denal's Despair, nor had it been given the inkling of Hope by Otte's soft words and soft heart; and most of all, it had not been given Nim's Imagination, to spend its days idling away whilst imagining a life it could lead if it tried, and it had not been stricken by Rin's efficient logic, forcing it to move about purely for survival. It was a creature who had been granted Life and movement by Ampe. Ampe, however, was nowhere to be found. The combination of their missing sister and the strange sound intrigued the Gods, so they approached the creature. It was a human being.
"Life becomes so tiresome," Said the lone, female human, "Alone here, without company. I feel as if my Life may not be worth anything," It continued.
Denal thought he saw the roots of Despair forming in this creature, and he tried to take advantage of it. He manifested himself in front of it, and it gasped at the presence of this new being. "Your Life doesn't mean anything," The God of Despair told her, "Your Life was given to you in the folly of my sister, thinking she could create something without her siblings intervening. I am her brother, Denal."
The human curtseyed to the God, replying, "It is a pleasure to meet you, Denal. I am Len."
Neither the presence of the God of Despair nor his words seemed to have an effect on this being. It seemed almost happy to see him. This time, Otte brought herself down to the mortal and offered a word of Hope, telling the human that if she lived a good life, then when she died she would go to a higher place, where she could be happy forever.
The human replied to Otte, too, with a curtsey and a kind greeting. "That is most interesting," She said to the Goddess.
Hearing such a tone in the human, the other Gods formed in front of it, the six of them awe-stricken in the presence of this being who could not be influenced by them. They each tried their hardest to bring about a change in this being's state of mind, but after hours of this, the human simply laid down upon the green grass and it fell asleep. This troubled the Gods, and they remembered the absence of their older sister, Ampe. They searched throughout the cosmos for her, but found her nowhere. There were still seven sentient beings in the universe, but now one was a mere mortal.
This enraged Mandes, and she brought herself unto the earth, where the human lay, and her feet scorched the ground they touched. She approached the human, and the heat warned the creature of danger, waking it from its slumber. "What did you do with my sister!?" Mandes roared, flames bursting from between her clenched teeth.
The human, not understanding, merely whimpered in response, bewildered by this impossibly hot being bearing down on her. "I know not of whom you speak! Until the six of you descended upon my home, I thought I was alone in the world!"
The words "the six of you" drove the point home to Mandes. The human didn't even know that it had been given life by Ampe. It wasn't aware that it was the product of the powers of Gods. Mandes left the frightened human on Earth as she returned to the heavens to tell this tale to her siblings. They had not found Ampe, and at this point they were afraid for Ampe's life, though she was immortal. The six Gods became convinced that Ampe had gone somewhere and entrusted the care of the human to them. It was a foolish assumption on their part, because it was not true.
Ampe, desperate to escape the constant squabbling between her brothers and sisters, created a planet who could maintain life. She created a lone human on this planet and made this human perfect. It was not influenced by any of her siblings and could not be, for she had purged the ability to change from its existence. This was a mistake in and of itself. With this perfect being, she sacrificed her own immortality, dying in the creation of this world and creating the system by which the world would grow and reproduce its own living creatures. With her death, she became the world she had worked so slavishly to create behind her siblings' backs, and her very essence, the essence of life, created everything else in the world. It created plants, animals, and it brought about the attention of the other Gods.
Now, as the Gods began to look after the human, they began to implement changes to the perfect world. Mandes' eternal fury became the heat that brought about warmth for the living beings, and Cepa's internal calmness brought about the soothing cool of the night and of water, which soon became essential to the life of this human. Nim and Rin were constantly changing things regarding the ground and the air, their influences bringing about imagination and logic to the human. It was Denal and Otte who came last. They tried hard not to get involved with the caretaking of the human, but they were just too fascinated by it. Denal brought about the darkness that evil lurked in, and Otte fostered the light in which the human worked.
The human, now imperfect by the tamperings of the Gods on its planet, had a thought. It thought about loneliness and despair, it thought about love and hope. It thought about fury and calmness, and about how it was granted the ability to imagine things while maintaining reason. This brought about the birth of another new thought in the human.
"I want a lover," The human told the Gods during one of their squabbles. This brought about silence in the Gods, for they didn't have the ability to grant life. That task fell upon their sister, Ampe, who had died in granting Life to Len.
"I'm sorry," Otte told her, "But we... We can't give you a lover. We don't have the power to do that."
"Well why not?" The bold human responded, slightly upset, "You created me, did you not?"
Denal stepped forward and offered an explanation. He told her the tale of her creation, and of how they had influenced the world the human lived in, causing a change in the human.
"But why can't you make me a companion?" She asked them, her patience running thin.
This worried the Gods, and they made a decision. They would try to create a human to give company to this mortal woman.
That night, during the woman's sleep, they set up a ritual. They called upon their collective powers and brought each of their traits into a mortal form. They fused the traits together, and it made the body of a man. But it was not alive. They didn't know how to bring it to life, that was always Ampe's power. So, Denal, who felt a certain affinity for this human girl, offered up his own immortality to bring the human male to life. The other Gods protested, saying it would leave an imbalance in the heavenly realm. He told them that he would give his powers of Despair over to Otte, his sister and oldest rival. This shocked the other Gods. Otte was not opposed to it, but she knew deep in her heart that she would miss her brother. So, after granting to his sister his dominions over Despair, Denal sacrificed his own immortality to bring life into the lifeless husk that was the man they had created. He took over the being, bringing it to life and freeing him from his immortal bonds. He became the man and he became human, still with all of the knowledge of his immortal life.
That morning, Denal found himself in the company of Len, the woman, and she asked him his name. "My name is Denal," He told her. She accepted this and held him close. They were now the only two humans in the world. As time passed, Denal and Len became romantically attached, fostering two children. Sadly, though, the union between them caused a waver in the powers of Otte. She lost control of Despair for less than a moment, but still a piece had escaped. Age and Death managed to find their way unto Earth, where they began to plague the world. The balance ruined, the Earth began to fall into turmoil. The Gods worked so hard to stop the spread of Death and Age, but they failed. Now, all that Ampe had sacrificed to create was being destroyed. Otte, the cause of this destruction, took the burden unto herself and called upon both of her domains to bring her one more power. She brought unto herself the power of Life. She removed from the Earth that which Death and Age were destroying, which forced them back under her control. Unfortunately for her, when she pulled the life from the Earth, she hadn't noticed what became of it. When she looked, she saw Len, Denal, and their two children dead, among the rest of the lifeless Earth. This was too much to bear, so she released her hold on both Despair and Life, in the hopes that they would bring back her beloved brother, her sister's creation, and the children of the two.
Life did no such thing. It became wrapped in Despair and melted back into the Earth, bringing with it new humans, who found Denal and Len and buried them. The knowledge of their Gods and the knowledge of what had transgressed was still firmly held in their minds, as Despair and Life held onto those memories, distributing them unto the humans.
Eons passed, and the humans forgot about their gods, they went their separate ways, and they began to war fervently. Despair still wrought havoc on the Earth, and Life fought back just as hard to bring new humans into the world every time one died. As the Gods saw this horrible scene unfold in front of them, they felt pain at the loss of their siblings. Each and every one suffered in their own way, until one day, Rin proposed an idea. They would all release their domains unto the Earth at full force, and it would end their suffering. The humans would then be able to think for themselves and the only two things on the Earth would no longer be Despair and Life.
Otte, the most tired of the Gods, agreed immediately, but the others were a bit more hesitant. After a while, they, too, agreed. They proceeded to sacrifice their own immortality to unleash their powers unto the Earth. But, the small human minds were not ready for such an influx of heavenly virtues, and they fought even harder. Now, with the seven Gods dead and the Earth in turmoil, a miraculous thing happened. The Earth rejected these virtues and sent them from its being. All seven gods found themselves in their heavenly realm, watching over the humans again. They cried and rejoiced, all of the events still firmly ingrained in their memories, and they swore to stop fighting, as that was what caused this in the first place. The seven Gods celebrated their rebirth and they looked upon the Earth, knowing what was to happen to it. They erased its existence from the universe and each God pitched in to create a new one, a more balanced one. Rin created the ground and all of the rocks. Nim created the air and the winds. Mandes created the warmth that was the sun, and the heat deep in the earth's crust. Cepa crafted the waters of the world and the moon, to bring about the calm ebb and flow of the tides. Denal created the darkness, which all of the living creatures were to fear. Otte forged the light, the source of hope and happiness for all of the creatures whose lives hinged upon it. And finally, Ampe brought life into the entire planet, making it lush with plants and animals. Now, they all watch over the world and respond to the prayers of the humans who still believe in them, and they live in their heavenly realm in happiness and in peace.
Now, in those times of peace, the Gods descend upon the earth once every five hundred years to grant mortals their prayers, in exchange for the mortals fighting in the event known only to the Gods. It is their way of settling disputes, and after the event, it is recognized that the God the victorious mortal represents is the most righteous, the most important to mortal life.
Each God, other than Ampe, chooses four "Gladiator"s to serve them in a fight to the death. The Gladiators are each given one power representative of the God who granted them the power, and they are placed in an arena in the Heavenly Realm. The fights go on for a week at a time, with exceptions, and each Gladiator must prove him or her self.
To the victor go the spoils of this "Gods' War", and to the losers... Oblivion. The winner of this contest is granted eternal prestige among the Gods, and in the past on Earth. They are granted all of their prayers, within reason, and they get to keep their powers. The losers are erased from existence, the fact that they ever lived removed from history, removed from the minds of all mortals, and removed from the universe. The only ones who will ever remember the fallen Gladiators are the Gods and the victor.
After all... what's a gamble without stakes?
Gladiators of Fury:
Gladiator of Fire -- Can create and use fire, moving it at will
Gladiator of Power -- Can, under emotional duress, greatly amplify own physical strength to astounding degrees. The strength is dependent on level of emotional distress
Gladiator of Betrayal -- Can disguise self as anyone who is suspected of treachery against the one whose thoughts are used
Gladiator of Bravery -- Can temporarily purge any individual of all emotion except for drive or anger, forcing them to become a skilled fighter, a complete work-horse, or an easy target
Gladiators of Calm:
Gladiator of Water -- Can control most liquids, can change the density of liquids, can “melt” into water and move around between water sources (with exceptions and constraints)
Gladiator of Crystal -- (Secret)
Gladiator of Complacency -- (Secret)
Gladiator of Modesty -- (Secret)
Gladiators of Despair:
Gladiator of Shadow -- Control over shadows, darkness, ability to become one with shadows, and teleportation (via previous ability)
Gladiator of Gravity -- (Secret)
Gladiator of Storm -- Can manipulate moisture in the air to create storm clouds, can then create continuous downpours/storms
Gladiator of Fear -- (Secret)
Gladiators of Hope:
Gladiator of Light -- Control over [visible] light pathways, can alter light paths to appear invisible, can create flashes of light
Gladiator of Energy -- Has the ability to push energy into or pull energy out of any system (can only pull out half of the energy), can then use stolen energy to increase own physical strength/stamina or the strength/stamina of others
Gladiator of Electricity -- Control over electrical currents of all types (surrounding energy is turned into electricity, if none is present, personal energy is used)
Gladiator of Heart -- (Secret)
Gladiators of Imagination:
Gladiator of Wind -- Has control over air currents, with which small-scale tornados may be caused or large blasts of wind may be created
Gladiator of Fallacy -- (Secret)
Gladiator of Illusion -- Can create hallucinations and illusions of himself or others that have no physical form
Gladiator of Insanity -- (Secret)
Gladiators of Logic:
Gladiator of Metal -- Can use metallic elements in soil or in other natural sources to forge weapons or armor or other metal components for various reasons. Can also use this mastery over metal to attract or repel metal as if by magnets
Gladiator of Analysis -- (Secret)
Gladiator of Health -- The ability to heal any wound, any illness, and in the arena; any mental effect cast upon self or others by another power. The self-healing of mental effects is immediate and cannot be controlled, making the Gladiator of Health immune to all other mental abilities
Gladiator of Avarice -- Can temporarily mimic another’s power, seeming to steal it from them, and instantly gains mastery over it to the same level as the original wielder