‘Demons!’ Thank Hell my voice hadn’t changed, it thundered through the warehouse and out into the layers of air where the demons would hear it while the humans were deaf.
A breeze began to lift through the hall and I went to grab the feathers, but my hand/paw just pinned one of them while the rest blew up into the air. I watched the feathers float, but they only went up, so none of them were lost. When they started to fall I looked up at the army assembled in front of me, some on the floor, some resting on crates and shelves, looking around the room with the same bloody confused looks on their faces. Samael stepped forward, the only one frowning, his hand immediately going to the sword strapped to his hip, ‘Sire?’
‘Grab the feathers.’ I moved away so Samael could pluck them from the air and jumped up onto an unoccupied crate close by.
‘Sire, where are you?’ Samael asked as he stepped forward and grabbed all the feathers.
‘I’m here.’ Samael looked at my direction, but above my head.
‘Are you invisible?’
‘No, you idiot! I’m right here!’ Samael’s eyes moved down and he jumped when he saw me. I could feel the black eyes of the demons on me too, their evil trying to penetrate my body but not even touching my fur. At least that’s something I guess. ‘It seems I had a mishap.’
Samael swallowed and cocked his head slightly, ‘What…happened?’
‘I came up naked.’ I looked away to the dirty crate I was sitting on, ‘And female.’
A snigger rose through the demons and I looked up. They all froze, evil presence retracting. Good, at least I still have some sort of powers. ‘This happened when I tried to teleport. Would you like to fucking laugh at that too?’
A cry of, ‘no Sire,’ rang through the room and I nodded and stood, walking over to Samael, ‘I believe this happened because the final scroll got opened first. It would be just like them to put a spell on the scrolls so they would have to be opened in order to release the full power of each.’
Samael shook his head, ‘That would explain the lack of armour and the…glitch in your powers. But not the initial female body.’
I frowned. Samael was right. But how else could that have happened? I shook my head, ‘Never mind that now. We need to get to work. We need eyes, and that means demon possessions, a few of you would do, in different positions so we can see everything. And others need to get ingredients.’
‘For what Sire?’ one demon asked.
‘Spells of course!’ I sighed, since when were these things so stupid? ‘We need basics first, protection spells that will blind the angels and ward them off.’
A bunch of demons nodded more than the others. ‘Sire,’ one of them spoke up, ‘the five of us are the current Circle.’ My eyes narrowed and they flinched.
‘When did I say you could speak?’ I wasn’t sure why I sounded so calm after everything, but suddenly half the demons started quivering , and smiled slightly. I turned back to the current Circle, couldn’t remember their full name but never mind, ‘I’ll leave you to collect equipment then.’
They nodded, ‘Do you mind, Sire,’ they added as they caught my look, ‘if we take our apprentices as well?’
I sighed, ‘Very well. Now get out of my sight.’ They quickly disappeared, and I turned to the others, ‘Scouts, find new meat suits. Make sure you hit different levels, and go international.’ Some of them grinned at their orders, probably hoping to grab some sapling in Australia, and smoked out. ‘And the rest of you, return to Hell.’ I paused when the groans started up. I rolled my eyes and looked at Samael. He’d been quiet for too long. It was time these twisted worms remembered why this particular fallen angel was my lieutenant.
Samael nodded and stepped forward, ‘Oi!’ His roar thundered through and all of the demons froze, evil eyes wide, some mouths open, and I couldn’t help but chuckle. ‘Since when were you allasked, to go to Hell? Since when did your Master say “please you little fucking princesses?” Because I don’t recall that. I only heard your Mastercommandyour presence in Hell, and he doesn’t expect or stand for backchat from little piss stains like yourselves!’ Wow, I think he’d been watching me rant for too long. ‘Now, get your arses back in Hell,’ he grabbed the hilt of his sword and drew a fraction of the blade out, ‘before I decide which ones of you little maggots I want to see bleed.’ His voice was low and was pushed out between clenched teeth. Another breeze, and I smiled as they all disappeared in unison, except for three at the back. I turned back to Samael, ‘Not bad. I was afraid you’d gotten rusty.’
Samael smiled slightly and shoved his sword back in, ‘Shame, I’m still not sure what colour they all bleed.’ He walked over and clicked his fingers in the process, and the final three demons came running in silence, ‘Make this place more habitable.’ They nodded and smoked out, leaving me alone with my lieutenant. Thank God.
I sighed, wincing as it came out as a pathetic little mewl and padded up to Samael, ‘I don’t like this.’
Samael squinted slightly, then asked, ‘How did that happen?’
I shook my head, ‘Not sure. There was a little pinch as I came up, but that’s about…’ an image flashed in front of my mind. The puny angel’s confusion. Slumped over. Legs out in front of him and quickly retracting. A dark stain on one of his feet. ‘Bitch.’ I whispered.
‘Sir?’ Samael frowned.
‘The angel. The one who grabbed my scroll,’ I looked up, ‘He messed with one of the runes.’
Samael frowned for a second before understanding eclipsed his face, ‘You mean, on the doorway?’
‘Must have been. His foot was covered in blood. He messed with one of the runes.’ The realisation dawned and a fire I hadn’t felt for a while started to flare through my gut. ‘That bitch messed with my doorway! I’ll fucking kill him!’
‘Oh no, I won’t just kill him. I’ll drag him into the very heart of Hell, strap him to the bars on the Cage and gut him over and over again until he can’t even scream anyone, shove a poker through his head, and gut him again just for good measure!’
‘What?’ The ceiling tiles started shaking, ‘What, Samael, is sofuckingimportant?’
He cleared his throat and my fur started bristling, I was about ready to lunge at his throat, ‘That sounds brutal, but if you’re right, this guard angel deserves a lot more than just eternal gutting.’
‘Well obviously, but what do you suggest?’
‘My recommendation?’ Samael smiled slightly, ‘Wait. Concentrate on the scrolls, with each one you’ll gain more power, your old strength will come back, you can change out of that body and into any form you like, have ten wings, black skin, whatever you want. And then, you can create forms of torture that even demons would deem cruel, put them in a box, and then throw this angel in.’
I stared at Samael, ‘I like the sound of that. Seriously, when did you get so evil?’
He chuckled, ‘I’ve had a good teacher. Now,’ he pulled out the feathers from his belt and placed them on the crate, ‘I’m assuming these are his feathers.’
‘The ones I could grab,’ I counted them. Three, only three of them. ‘Of all the animals in the world, I had to turn into a baby cat with a tiny mouth.’
Samael shrugged, ‘At least you’re a black cat. They bring bad luck to humans.’
I nodded, ‘Fair enough. Now, put them away somewhere secret. You remember the runes to place on the box. We’re going to need them.’
I stood up, a smile stretching across my face, I felt my tail flick in excitement, ‘To find the scrolls. Each one of those, in the right spell, will tell us the location of each scroll. And, with the preserved grace, they can break the seals, and unleash each and every level of the Apocalypse. Just you watch, Samael.’ The angry fire was now mixing with fresh excitement, ‘This world, and everyone on it, is going to burn.’