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He Descends, Delving Deeply.

26 Dec

Logan stared in horror as the faces of the kindly adventurers around him began to melt. “Get away from me!” he gasped. “Begone, demons!  You’ll not have me!” He stood on shaky legs and flipped his massive wooden desk. The heavy antique seemed eager to attack the warrior and his priest lover. “Back!  I’ll not go with you!” He looked around feverishly. “I’m warning you, you don’t know what you deal with!”

The man gripped at the sword at his side and pulled it from its sheath.  The blade sang as it came to view, shining like it was an incarnation of the very light itself.  The room seemed to dim in its presence, and the adventurers-turned-demons hissed and pulled away, screeching in agony at the mere sight of the magnificent shining blade.  Logan swung the sword at the warrior, whose cry of pain erupted like the nearby volcano.

The weapon’s voice as it cut through flesh and armor was a symphony of flutes played by the fairies in the forest, far to the south.  Logan closed his eyes in pleasure, then opened them once more in time to parry a clumsy swing from the demonic warrior. “Your friend meddles too much, demon.  It is time she napped.”

The warrior shouted something incomprehensible and leaped in front of the slashing, shining sword.  A human arm fell from the shoulder of the demon, and the reek of burned flesh filled the room as black blood began to boil forth.

Logan grinned as the demon man fell. “Good day.” he grunted as he drove his sword through the warrior’s neck. A human’s body appeared as the demon disguised itself in its final moments.  Logan looked beyond the fallen body of the warrior.  The demonic priest was comely, with high cheek bones and a slender figure.  Her hair was like a fire, and she stood resolute.  Her largest flaw was a lack of any eyes.  Her lips were like an archer’s bow, and her nose ended in a most delicate point.

“Logan, please stop.” she begged.  Her voice echoed in the wind chimes outside the open window, and she stepped toward Logan, hands outstretched, palms up. “I am unarmed– I have only a book to heal, and I am unarmored.” She paused and slowly wiped the expanse of flesh that covered where eyes were meant to go. “You’ve done enough.  We came only to deliver a letter.” she explained slowly.

“And I’m to believe that, when you enter my home under false appearance?” Logan demanded harshly.  The female demon flinched. “Begone.  Deliver it to the man outside the door, lest it prove poisoned!” He spat at her feet.

The demoness took another step closer to him. “Logan, why did you kill him?  He was you friend.” she demanded.  To Logan’s surprise, she sounded sincerely saddened.

“He was a demon, just as you are.  Both of you hold the faces of those I love, but I saw your disguises fall.” He reached forward with his free hand and brushed her hair from her face. “I must kill you now, as well.  Take solace in that you are very beautiful.” He shifted his grip on his shining sword and slid his other hand to the back of her neck.  He pulled her against his chest, then drove his sword sideways between two of her ribs first once, then twice and thrice.

Each time, she jerked against him and sobbed.  After the second, she began to cough, and wet, burning liquid fell onto Logan’s shoulder.  At the third stab, she began to gargle as she struggled to breathe.  The man continued to stab her: once, twice, thrice again.  The beautiful demon dug her claws into his flesh and desperately began to kick and struggle.

Once, twice, thrice.  He dropped her.  Bubbles rose from the stab wounds. “May the Light find peace for your soul.” he murmured regretfully.  The man wiped their black and boiled blood from his blade, then slid it into its scabbard.  The room seemed all the more dull without its bright light.

The man walked to his flipped desk and, with some struggle and sweat, righted it.  He spent several minutes adjusting the heavy wooden desk back to his liking and cleaning the room, though he ignored the dead warrior and the dying priestess.  Logan was certain their bodies would fade eventually, and felt no rush to clean up the mess.

The priestess continued to gasp, and slowly struggled to lay on her belly.  She noisily vomited, which earned her a sharp glance from Logan, but nothing more.  He sat behind his desk and began to work once more on his tax revenue papers.  The demon woman was taking an eerily long time to die, and he admitted to himself that he did enjoy her pained expression, despite her alien face.

—–

The room was a mess.  A desk was turned on its side.  A guard from Driazhek was dead on the floor, his throat stabbed all the way through by a broken-off sword’s blade.  A young woman with yellow hair, the color of a peach before it became red, huddled in a corner.  She was unharmed, but trembled in terror and refused to let any of the king’s investigator’s near. “Away!  Away!” she cried as she backed farther into the cobweb-ridden corner.

The centerpiece of the room was a dead man of noble blood with ten stab wounds– nine in the ribs, and one in the hip, where the broken sword remained.  The man was surrounded in a mess of bloodied papers, all related to taxes.  A quill rested in one hand, and a sheaf of papers were locked in the other.  His dead eyes gazed with a basilisk’s intensity at the frightened young woman in the corner, a demented grin on his face.

“Away.  Away.” The girl murmured, “We came only with a message from the king… and he killed him.” She sobbed. “We aren’t truly demons, are we?” She gripped tightly to a specially-made book with a device of the most simple healing spell on the front.  The thin, open book had no words inside, only tiny dots in rows.

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