When Aliya Walters's parents both die and leave her alone, she thinks that life can't possible get any worse. Suffice to say, she's wrong.
Although things start to look up when she's taken in by her long-lost grandfather Elijha, her life starting to move on once more, reality hits hard when she becomes aware of the existence of beings that lurk outside of the human plane and outside of normal understanding- demons. Now armed with the knowledge of her own ancestry and the binding awareness of.

I first lost my faith in God when I was only three years old.

It was on the day that my mother died in a freak car accident. I was only an infant at the time- too young, some may argue, to disbelieve or believe in the existence of a creator. I remain convinced, however, that on some level, in my child’s mind, I realised then that in the future I would use my mother’s death as evidence to prove that the all-loving, all-seeing father didn’t- couldn’t exist. Or be more than an illusion created to stave off mortals’ inescapable fear of death and the beyond.

Of course, growing up as a young member of a highly religious family, I went through the motions anyway. I tried to believe in something, anything- if not the highly idealised and often prejudice divinity the local Christian sermons tended to advertise to what remained of my family and our grey-faced neighbours. But no matter how hard I listened and how often I prayed and sang as one voice among the many, it never really…clicked. The contrasting scenes of Heaven and Hell painted tantalisingly high on towering domes above me, and poured like a liquid rainbow into the arched windows on all sides, always made me feel strangely lonely. Surely, if God loved us all equally as his children, his family, then he wouldn’t condemn a person to Hell for the simple sin of disbelief? Forever in pain, forever suffering… it didn’t make sense that life, so short and brief and prone to disaster, would decide the fate of your soul for the rest of eternity. No matter the sin, from murder to theft, surely the soul deserves some chance at redemption, at peace, after they breathe their last breath.

Such doubts were always with me as a child, nibbling at the back of my mind and preventing me from blindly, happily believing in God like I should have- like I was expected to. And then, on the year I turned fourteen, those doubts came to consume all. My father followed my mother to the grave due to an erratic heart condition that he’d successfully hidden from my knowledge for years- and just like that I was left alone. What little belief I’d held was trodden into the ground and turned into a stubborn bitterness that made me incapable of ever believing again- or that’s what it felt like. My father may have thought he was protecting me by remaining silent about his condition- he probably hadn’t expected such a simple thing to kill him after all he’d been through- but he’d just managed to ensure that I was utterly unprepared for his passing, and it left me broken.

If Elijah hadn’t walked out of the shadows then, I don’t know what I’d have done.

I learned that all my relatives hadn’t died and left me alone, after all. On my mother’s side one relation remained- Elijah Walters, a fifty-five year-old priest. He’d been young, too young, when his wife had given birth to my mother, as she had been when giving birth to me, and apparently that was why relations between the two had broken down shortly after my untimely appearance into the world- gramps hadn’t liked seeing his daughter repeat the same mistakes. At first his abandonment of my mother, and the bitterness still left in me after losing both parents, caused me to hate him and make his life harder than it should have been after he agreed to become my guardian -if raising a teenager wasn’t hard enough already-, but over the years he gained my respect- and more. I found out what to meant to be family again.

And that’s why, when he first introduced me to Demons on my sixteenth birthday, I didn’t immediately scream 'crazy' and run to a psychologist.

The End

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