Glaring again, War fumed. "WE ARE-" "Damn it, would you stop with the head crushing voice?" Bill cut in, annoyance tinging his voice.
Fire blazed in War's eyes and Bill suddenly had the image of being skewered on a big sword from bottom to top flash through his head. However, when War spoke again, his voice was quiet again. "We are Horsemen without our horses, we're basically mortal. We have no control or say over our powers. Sometimes, they will randomly manifest, but for the most part, they don't work. Period."
A cold, numbing realization settled in the pit of Bill's stomach. Opening his mouth say something, he let it hang open as the full implications of what War explained settled in. A slow, high pitched whine filled the air, growing in volume and pitch until War appeared in front of Bill, slapping him across the face.
"Sorry. That damn noise was getting on my nerves." War apologized. He looked stricken. "Damnation. It's already starting." War muttered to himself. Seeing the confused look on Bill's face, War continued. "If once of us loses our horse, not only does that Horseman lose their powers, but the other's powers begin to wane - not to mention we begin to shift to the opposite of our personalities. In a way, we can tell immediately if one of us is in trouble."
"So, let me get this straight - because Bucky blew up Death's horse, she has lost her powers. Without her powers, people are not going to die. Right?" War nodded mutely. "In addition to that, the other Horsemen are going through personality shifts that make them polar opposites of their traditional personalities?" Bill pressed on. "So, instead of being an overbearing pain in the ass, you're now going to be meek and polite?"
War nodded morosely.
"Well, crap." Bill put set chin in his hand to think. "Well, we had better figure out how to fix this before Pestilence takes over Orkin or Terminex and Famine starts feeding the masses." Glancing over at War, Bill did a double take. On the floor next to his unconscious brother, War was in the fetal position.
Bill walked over to the now childlike Horseman and did something he never would have considered possible. He hauled War to his feet and slapped the mythical being across his rugged, scarred jaw. Twice.
The change was immediate. War's eyes blazed hotly. He threw back his arms, looked at the ceiling and bellowed "AAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!" The walls shook in fear of the re-energized deity. A picture fell off the wall, terrified of what was to come. As War leveled his gaze at Bill, the sound of a foot stomping the floor above them broke the new silence.
"Dammit, Bill! Keep the volume down or I'm going to call the super!" A voice floated through the popcorn texture of the ceiling. "Sorry!" Bill yelled back up. "Mrs. Meyers." He explained to War, acting as if that was all the explanation that was needed.