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The Devil wears my Crown.



 
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Damian Veron

My heart is a black cauldron, wherein the molten creations of rancor brew, their vapors engulfed by the lust which houses them. Pride, deliberate. I am immortal. They are insects. Carbon traces of illegitimate failure who have blistered the nature of my pleasurable existence. It is their erosion that now consumes me; a harboring of sullen thoughts for the grave, the grave disposition of these things that decay. I am their ruin. I am the prickling thing that finds their shadows, where they are but dust to my own paths twined. I am devourer of pride, raider of their inner sanctum. Harbinger of retribution. The desolation of peace which finds them sleeping, which tucks them within her web, which sucks from their veins, their marrow, their nightmares fueled by the satanic woe that breeds this malice.

I watch, I lurk, and then decide my own fate without the judgmental hand of their frivolous self-righteousness. Why? For I am a roaming creature, a vagabond wanderlust tied to nothing but my own harbored afflictions. The embers of my soul are possessed by the hellish spirit that leads me beyond their comprehension and imagination. My lips whisper such terrible things, the acrid poison to seduce the minds and incinerate every belief to dust. Their temples, I destroy. Their hate, their disgust - it fuels me, makes me stronger. Yet I am not arrogant to the ploy of this flippant world. Riding high in the summer, we're shot down by the fall... Though, let me light up your mind with this little fact - You cannot kill what you did not create. And the idea of evil that is me, never dies. It transforms. Infects. Spreads like wildfire.

Our fates are twined, can't you see? Now my knife is hungrier than any corpse left behind in the erosion of my own concern. I am insatiable, deprived, ever starved for all but those flames that had scathed my wild heart

Down below in my tomb, I am waiting. I am bleeding. I am wanting...

Capri. Wane of winter. 2020. 

The night was still like a lover's torn heart; left hollow and frozen, a severance of eternal adoration and affection while a bloodied soul left raw and muddied with the despair of rejection. The cold damnation that was love's endless curse. Forbidden deeds were committed beneath the skylight indigo hues, the vivid aggravation of hell's morbid flame left unattended and abandoned. Devilish sneers on mongrel thieves, 'twas the stroke of midnight, on the island of sin.

The Castle of Shadows, home to Lasombra cainites for countless centuries, stood silent in the night, perched high upon the rocky cliff, and bathed by the hunter's moon. Its structure barely visible in the thick blanket of fog, it appeared as a ghostly ruin, an infernal sanctum where nightmares come to hide.

No light was to be seen in the windows or even leading to this monstrous monolith. All stood still around it, everything was wilted with corrosion, with death. No trees with leafage, here flowers didn't bloom, only barren ground and unmarked graves that jutted out from the ground, as if they were broken teeth; a monster waiting to devour the lost souls that strayed from the path. 

Deep within the cavernous hallways of the castle, evil slumbered. The lounging leviathan, reposed. This had been his home for nigh four years on, and it seemed he had spent most of that time, sleeping. The very name, Damian, murmured throughout the serpentine corridors in hushed whispers, so faint and distant. It cooed from the depths of shadows and pitch blackness like an affectionate lover's sigh, content in the fornication of sin, unbridled lust and forbidden desires taunting and teasing the senses. He was summoned by the shadows, and he must answer the call.

Flashing eyes, bright as newly borne black flames, sprang to life; a breathless gasp as the mass of rampant force broke through his reverie. With fluid vampiric grace, he had risen, and was now swiftly moving through the desolate corridors, his firebird right by his side. The quiet eve breaking the treaty of angelic silence, shattered to pieces by the violent rupture of his maniacal form. A conspiracy of ravens perched upon the parapets and the gargoyle heads, kraw-ing loudly and fluttering about in restless anticipation.

August 24, 2020 07:16 pm

Damian Veron

In the past years, stripped far away from the hullabaloo of the realm, the vagabond king had lived a more quiet, bucolic life behind the bastioned walls of his clan's fortress; indulging himself head-first in the finer, more pleasant things in life, like blood, flesh and wife. It had been quite a segue from his normal dose of murder, mayhem and madness, which though sorely missed, provided him a much needed break to rest and recover. A sort of, temporary vacation from insanity. Whoever said, there is no rest for the wicked, clearly, was an idiot.

A little knock on the daunting, engraved door, and then like a lit match thrown to gasoline, they blazed into the Hall of Elders. Crossing the threshold, a rush of cool air aroused the senses with the smell of the ancient and archaic, of power and frankincense, and misery. Death, it was death in its most primordial form. Gleaming, marble floor like nigrescent mirrors lined their step as black tendrils of smoke slipped from the dark, sinister corners of the hall to seductively ensnare around their limbs and usher them in.

Pheenyx's gaze stretched along the enormous pillars and stone archways rising up to the ceilings, mesmerized by the sight of hanging tapestries and wall murals, telling stories of ancient, glorious battles and wars of yore. The bloodshed and misery on display was like a balm to her senses. He would have sworn he could hear her purring against him, though his gaze, never strayed. Like hell's sentinels the pair of toxic gems were littered with a swirling onyx, locked ahead at the far end of the hall, the serpentine stare raking the foreboding sight.

Basilio The Elder, sat proudly atop his high throne, while the high council was seated on either side of the throne in two rows of three. Familiar faces strewn across his scaping vision. From left to right, Parrichus, Annicius, Panfilo "The Cruel", Lady Magdalena, Borges, and of course, his sire, Leonidas. As ever, a scribe sat just below them, a quill in hand poised to record the events for posterity. This was a land stuck in a time warp which refused to move. They believed in the old ways, reliving the past glories and practices, they held on possessively to their olde world and grandeur. Like a ghost waiting for one last moment to live for.

They came to a halt before them. Flames crackling atop the chandeliers above, illuminating the hall with just enough light to propagate the right amount of impending doom. Pheenyx's gaze would study intently the figures of fallen elders suspended high above the pedestal, the massive statues casting a dark shadow across the room, looming ominously over the scene below like Ringwraiths. Through the nefarious abyss of the hollowed hooded shrouds, their ghosts called to her.

"Count Basilio, distinguished high council," The butcher took a bow, slow and courteous, lethargic grace emanating from every bend of muscle and tendon. He had observed them, walked among them in silence without much reprimand to his reputable nonchalance. In the concealing veil of macabre melancholy, prowled his venomous guile of rapturous mania, "to what do I owe this honor of being summoned amongst such royalty? Well, whatever, it is, I swear, I didn't do it." The crook, the devil, with his smile all askew, roguish and flaunting a smirking revenge.

Leonidas shook his head, a helpless roll of his eyes as a low, guttural sigh slowly released past dark sanguine lips. Neck craning sideways, those sapphire pearls radiated their attention towards Basilio in almost a helpless plea to takeover. The hellion beast always had issues toeing the clan line and maintaining court decorum and this time was proving to be no different, much to the chagrin of his sire. Black, calloused nails tapped upon the gilded armrest of the throne, as The Elder's accusatory bloodshot gaze held the vampire in appraisal. The leathered skin of the ancient's face, had weathered with the passage of time over the millennia, was now frozen in reflection. The words slipped slowly from the ancient one's cracked lips, sibilant like a serpent's hiss, dark and full of venom. Hypnotizing.

"Damian... What do you know about The Kiasyd, and the discipline of Mytherceria"
August 25, 2020 07:55 pm

Damian Veron

Brooding brows cocked, teetering the arsenal that lingered beneath the surface of those stygian eyes. Ribbons of shadows and light shrouded him, draped upon the canvas of his contemplating visage. It portrayed him in a grim and ever silent intensity, held in the clench of his masculine jaw.

"Fables? Is this why I've been summoned, to tell bed time stories?" Damian's gaze crossed his sire to see the anger brimming across his countenance at his tone. If Leonidas had a heart beat, his blood would have boiled by now. Not wanting to push, anymore, lest feel the full fury of his sire's wrath, the raven haired renegade relented, going along with what he perceived to be a charade, much to his irritation.

"Alright, if you must." He sighs, and begins, "So, as the lore goes, once upon a time, one of our own, named Marconius, was found to be not the messiah, but a very naughty boy. It seems, he liked to roll around in the dirt with the faeries. Yes, filthy and disgusting, I know, but before we all collectively gasp in horror at once, there is more. During one of their, erm, let's just call them 'rituals', they apparently summoned one of the Gods of the underworld, Zeernebooch. And as one must do when in the presence of a deity, quickly proceeded to invite him for a little tryst of, um, ménage à trois."

The vampire raised his hands upwards, conceding, "Hey, now let's not be judgy here, we all have our kinks. I sure know I do, but that's a campfire story for another time. Anyways, there appears to have been some biting involved, and blood was exchanged. Faerie blood, underworld god blood, it was all a very heady concoction, and even though it might have seemed fun at the time to mix heavy drugs at the same time on a crazy night out, it is not generally advisable, as there are always, side effects. Marconius' appearance changed quickly - growing several feet taller, thinner, and even paler. His eyes changed to large, elongated orbs of inky black, his skin became a glowing chalk white, and his features took on a pronounced fae-like appearance. Hmm, talk about a bad trip."

The vampire raconteur was on the move now, slowly pacing back and forth within the scope of the elder's gaze. His gait was without the slunk of lethargy, taken with a provocative nonchalance, as he weaved and spun his yarn; the long artisan stroke of his saunter reflected in the black marbled mirrors beneath him. "Needless to say, Marconius was instantly declared a pariah by the elders and was to be swiftly executed to remove any trace and history of such an abomination which tainted our bloodline. But, all didn't go according to plan. Marconius disappeared before the guards to could get hold of him, and was never to be seen again."

Footsteps came to a grinding halt as his gaze lifted off the nigrescent mirrors to address his audience, choosing his words carefully, "There were rumors, of course. Rumors about how with the physical side effects, came unknown powers. Strange powers that gave him the ability to modify reality itself, as we know it. Abilities to absorb a victim's mind, to steal their memories and knowledge with a tenebrous stare. He called this secret discipline Mytherceria.

It is said to have driven many a victim to babbling madness or in a permanent catatonic state. There were also rumors that Marconius can transfer his curse, his gift, through his Embrace. And thus, created his own bloodline of abominations in process, called the Kiasyd. There has never been any proof to any of this, of course. All there is to it is hearsay and village ghost stories. So, what is it? From what I am aware and care, this is all just a made up bullshit cautionary tale, to keep our clan members from ever venturing out and 'spoiling' our pure bloodline with another race or species."

There was silence then, and in silence The Elder appraised the vampire. Cold bloodshot eyes that prolonged their grace in brooding pursuit, lacking the humane twitch of a blink. They watched curiously, threateningly. There was no mercy he gave him now more than the moments of thinning patience, fingernails gently tapping away on the armrest stone to some macabre tune. The sardonic drive of the ancient one's sultry lull would then purr darkly into the reverberating shadows, visceral and chilling,

"You would be wrong."
August 26, 2020 07:40 pm

Damian Veron

Ravenesque brows furrowed in confusion and curiosity, a deluge of questions swimming within the midnight pools of acerbic cynicism. His features were quick to change, like the restless sea. That listless defiance cradled in the lines of his countenance, obsidian stones burning with a brooding ambiance; unable to hide the intrigue which now stained the walls of his anchored thoughts. There was movement in his peripherals, catching the sight of Leonidas slowly moving towards him as the elder continued to speak.

"Unfortunately, we cannot deny the rumors, they are very true. We have been hunting for Marconius for over two millennia now, and have failed every time. His sightings have been few and far between, appearing once every few centuries. He is supposed to keep a small family of Kiasyd, making it easy for them to move about without attracting attention and live in secrecy." A dark scowl took over the elder's face as he leaned forward, his voice turning grim, "Every assassin we have sent to hunt him down, has never returned. The last one, over two centuries ago. His body was never found, and Marconius and his family disappeared again. For over two hundred years, there was no word. Until tonight."

Leonidas handed the vampire a black manila envelope, his fingers quickly shuffling through its contents to reveal the pictures and letters written haphazardly by the clan's seekers spread around the world. "A witch's coven was attacked just outside Strasbourg last night. All their memories and knowledge stripped from their mind leaving them catatonic. This is their work, Damian. For all these years we have failed, but fate has given us a chance again. We cannot fail again, and now the burden shall fall upon you to ensure history doesn't repeat itself. This has been your home, your shelter for whenever you have fallen, and now is the time for you to pay your debt."

Pheenyx would move to object but a quick hand would raise to hold her in her tracks, his motion subtle but assertive. Now was not the place, nor the right time. Virulent gems bleeding acrimony would turn upon his sire, seething silent rage held neatly behind the composed pallor "And you agree to this?" Behind the callous tenor, there was pain in the voice, a somber tone of soldier rebel being sent to his grave. They will make a martyr of him.

"My hands are tied, Damian. You have to do this." The vampire could see the helplessness etched clear in the cerulean eyes of his sire, his strained stone-like visage hiding the concern it held for his childe, too well. Moving closer, Leonidas slipped his hands under the vampire's steely jawline and pulled him closer, staring hard and deep into his eyes so he understood the deep gravity of the situation as he whispered the last words, "There is no choice."

Those abysmal halos of madness didn't stray as he tore his sire's hands off his face, and pushed away. Heartless, loveless, starved for calamity and chaos alike, the brazen stretch of his unraveled body now in full view of his audience took an exaggerated bow, "Your wish, my command." A tip of an invisible hat, and the Machiavellian devil pulled his composure to that of a gentleman sly. Biting back a husky chuckle, the vampire only smiled all the wider, a vulgar fire lingering in the hostility of his flaring, impassioned stare. "My lords, lady... It's been a pleasure."

And with that, he was off, Pheenyx's hand in his, moving out with the same blaze they had entered these hallowed halls. Striving now for the scarlet horizon that lied in ribbons at the end of the world, he feared nothing, fecklessly free but for the bounds of his coveted nobility and royal siege, a killer and a thriller of the roman passion.

Seven devils all around you
Seven devils in your house
See I was dead when I woke up this morning
I'll be dead before the day is done...
August 27, 2020 07:56 pm

Pheenyx

Don't fret precious, I'm here
Step away from the window, go back to sleep.
Safe from pain and truth and choice and other poison devils.
See, they don't give a fuck about you ... like I do.



The course fabric of the armchair was offensive against her bare skin. She was cradled deep in the recess of the seat, pliant limbs tucked casually beneath her. My dreaming devil, how peaceful the mask that conceals the chaos beneath. The repetitive dissonance of teeth grinding in solicitude sounded as her jaw rested in the cup of her palm. Fire eyes, accustomed to the pitch-black nature of the suite, combed over the dormant leviathan in the king-sized bed a few feet away. He didn't move; never breathed. He was a marble statue, eyes shut tight in respite. The only gentle facet about him was the way his obsidian locks fell across his forehead while he slept.

After an impossibly long moment, Pheenyx's gaze shifted to the clock on the nightstand. 1:45. Middle of the day. She watched the blue glow of the numbers absently as another minute passed.

Languidly she stood, reaching for a black sundress hanging in the armoire. With a single fluid motion she slipped the garment over her head and dipped her toes into matching sandals. She then kneeled down in front of him in silence and brushed away the stray hair from over his eyes. A tilt of her head in contemplation, blonde curls cascading over her bare shoulder. It amazed her the force he was when awake, but how disarming he could be when asleep. How easy it might be to slit his throat with the acerous edge of her fingernail.

She smiled affectionately.

Damian didn’t so much as flinch. Her gesture had conveyed enough and so she stood to leave. On her way out, graceful hands reached for the black manila folder and accompanying black notebook from the dresser. She slid the suite door open and then closed, listening for it to click into place before carrying on to the top deck of the private yacht.

It was a useful thing to have no affliction from sunlight. It allowed her to manage business matters during the middle of a human day, free from the opinions of those who were evernear. Not that she minded the constant of a particular iniquitous gaze but sometimes she liked it a bit better this way; autonomy, at this moment, to graze through the paperwork they’d been given and come to her own assumptions.

Pheenyx settled into the plush cushions at the bow, sunlight reflecting the radiance of the Mediterranean waves onto her porcelain cheeks. She slid black aviators over merlot jewels, kicked off her sandals and resumed the same position as she had been below deck. There was already a fresh Negroni waiting on the side table for her. This staff was to be commended. If only she'd ever deign to do such a thing. The staff are supper, yet this they do not know. Another curious curl of her pout upward.

At last, she set the envelope on her lap and flipped it open to start going through the content. Crude letters and shoddy pictures littered the inside. For as much as there was, it was pitiful; infuriating. Fucking ridiculous. She meticulously picked through the papers and offerings in the folder, sipping at the gin mixture all the while, making sure she didn’t miss anything. She needed to weave together a timeline from what little the Elders did consolidate.

After a thorough once-over of the documents, the cocktail was finished in a single swallow, set aside and her attention adjusted to the little black book. Undoing the small elastic band, she put pen to paper and began the task at hand.

...

.:March, Twenty-Twenty:.

We're halfway to Marseilles now. Almost a full day left of travel until we're in Strasbourg.

And he hasn't said a word.

I don't know whether to be impressed, furious or apprehensive. It's been a long time since I've seen him in this state of mind. I don't think They realize what they've done in asking this of him. And if they do ... well ... there will be consequences I'm sure. Personally, I'm hoping for the latter.

The Château de l'Île has been rented out indefinitely, compliments of LeonidAss. A driver will be waiting for us at the station. Short staff; no other guests. We'll have free reign of the grounds to carry out our research.

Tomorrow evening we'll start in the Archives at the University.

The Devil and I shall deliver the undeliverable. I refuse to be erased as all others before us have.
We will find Marconius and his lepers.



...


Counting bodies like sheep to the rhythm of the war drums.
August 29, 2020 03:15 am

Pheenyx

"Je suis désolé mademoiselle, I'm sorry, but the Archives are only available by appointment and unfortuantely we're closing in ... fifteen minutes! Comme c'est merveilleux! You know how Fridays can be, busy and all that. I would love to stay and help, but my favorite program starts in ... une heure and Marguerite took the afternoon off. Usually Monsieur Guillaume doesn't mind if I keep the library open if a student or two are really needing to use ... l'ordinateur ... those computer things, but I just really can't, you see?"

"I understand. Is there anyone else here Madame? Or have you made sure they're all gone so you can get home?"

"Oh! Well every other Friday since it started, I announce the closing one hour early. So everyone is gone now. But if you'd like, I can make a ... em ... rendez-vous? Tomorrow? In the morning?"

"Yes, I think so. What time do you open? And where is the archive room, just so I know where to come tomorrow?"

"Ah, oui, we open at 7 o'clock. And it's down the stairs and through the lower level. If you follow the signs, you'll find it easy! Oh, and we have this beautiful key to get in there - it's an older building you are aware? Marguerite loves going in there. Maybe she can give you the tour tomorrow! Yes! See here, the key. Beautiful, yes?"

"Yes. Magnifique."

Pheenyx reached over the desk in abnormal flurry, saccharine pout disarming the senescent woman until the very end. One set of razor-sharp nails ripped the key from mottled flesh, easy as it were, while her free claw sunk deep into the wearied fold of that gray feathered skull, bringing it forward with such force that when it bounced back and off the solid oak surface, ichorous globs and candied skull skittered everywhere, no features left to be seen. Once, twice. A third time.

The chair squeaked under the pressure of the fresh carcass, unprepared for the unbalanced load. Light as it was. It tipped, dumping the spewing sack of bones onto the white tile with a thoroughly satisfying thud, saturating the cat-covered shag rug below in a beautiful merlot wave. Pheenyx brought claws to lips, sucking off the sinew and sampling her meal. Only then did she realize she was behind schedule. A sigh and flick of the remnants from beneath her nails.

... a fucking appointment tomorrow. She spun on the heel of her red bottoms, twisting towards the majestic staircase centering the Library, bringing all eyes upwards towards the crowning ceiling. But down, down is where she needed to be. Quick stop to the utility room to shut off all the ground-visible power, lock the doors, and shut off the cameras. Bloody humans. You'd think they'd get smarter - but not for their sake of convenience. The unrestrained click of her heels on the tile floor echoed into the nothingness of the massive building. It was all hers. Until 7 o'clock that was. Plenty of time to find what she was looking for.


.:March, Twenty-Twenty:.

This place is fucking worthless.
The manuscripts are gone, the indexes are washed out and all the books are missing pages. Of course they're missing the goddamn pages. Why did I think this would work? If Marconius has been in Strasbourg all this time then obviously the Seekers before us would've started in the Archives too.

I don't know what to do. I have the envelope Basilio gave us, but nothing is matching up. All the scraps don't fit. And instead of helping, D fucking took off. For a couple days! I can't imagine what the hell could be so important that he'd bail on me, while I'm finding the skeletons of his family's fairy-tales. What the actual fuck? He's going to have a hell of a time making this one up to me.

In the meantime, I'll go speak with the witches next - even though their brains are muddled to shit. Maybe I can get something out of at least one of them at the Ward.

I have to find something.
September 01, 2020 03:44 am

Pheenyx

His artistry, will be the death of, me.

Dread breeds in the belly low, the unrequited ember of its disease sidling upwards from the pit of your gut, clawing its way up your spine, between your lungs, through your heart, and out by crown; ripping, scratching, crying for mercy, as it bears down on your resolve. There is no escape. You can't get out.

The hallways were being serenaded by the chaos of frantic rustling, frenzied muttering and feverish whispers. Things unseen by eye but imprinted by mind haunted the witches housed here. A complete and total power failure at the Ward meant the only way to navigate the labyrinthine corridors was by the depth and distance of each delicious, delirious scream.

Pheenyx raised her arms up in a slow, deep stretch, dousing herself with the unleashed grace of her newly and carefully curated Ward. The dense air, impregnated by iron and copper, intoxicated her by way of the sweet aromas of death, fear and decay. It was their misery she craved.

She slowly walked down the Cimmerian landscape, observing briefly the vacuous expression of each conscious witch. It remained to be seen why this coven had been ravaged and left to public view. A grave mistake, perhaps? That's what she was there to discover.

She stopped at a door marked number 6. Whispers from within cradled at the base of the her neck, soothing the demon within. Manic glory of a severed soul.

"shift. bend. black. hide. Hide! see. it sees! white. black. fate." The measly shell containing the broken witch's psyche sat in the middle of the floor, acting as the center of the black hole, pupils dilated to the size of peppermints. The devil called fear saturated her otherwise plain features. Lips moved in a steady gait. Broken thoughts; severed words. She was a masterpiece of insanity, and Pheenyx craved more.

She peered back down the hallway, amused at the random helpless wails asphyxiating any sense of reprieve for the tenants of this hell she had crafted. Sliding a blood-smeared master key into the lock, she pulled free the cage door and reveled in the immediate rise of anxiety from the child. No more than eighteen years of age, the girl sat motionless in the middle, blind eyes transfixed in a momentary state of clarity on Pheenyx's entrance.

"not againnot aagain .. not .. no .. notagain ... black. black. black! eyes. teeth. mouth. see. it sees. fate. fate! fate ..." As quick as the sentience was there, it vanished and her mouth began uttering sequences of a fractured mind. The vampire's apathy-soaked smile widened significantly at the reemergence of psychosis.

"Hush little bird, come away and fly with me?" Mellifluous lilt washed calm over the young witch, causing another bout of paused clarity. "Come sweet darling, and tell me all your secrets." The young witch's eyes darted apprehensively into the darkness, unable to make shadow from structure, seeking out the siren that sought her.

"No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No! black. black. fate. eyes. white. black. flesh. fate!"

Pheenyx grabbed the girl by the back of the neck, lifting her by flesh and hair until she was on tiptoes, her malnourished arms tucked tight against her body rather than flailing wildly about as expected. The vampire leaned in and carved her words into the air, "Where is Marconius?" The pure animosity suffused every syllable. "Where. Is. Marconius!"

Screaming. Screaming. Screaming. A loud thump as the girl was dropped back to the tiled floor. Instinctively, the witch curled up into a tight ball and rocked in the darkness. Pheenyx grimaced at the mess and left the room.

Another fucking failure.



.:March, Twenty-Twenty:.

How many witches does it take to make this vampire crazy? Fifteen apparently. Fifteen mindless, sputtering shells - and not a single one of them helped me get any closer to understanding the Kiasyd's mind-pillage. I even spent some time trying to intercept their dreamspheres but my abilities are just too weak still. I need to train more. All I could get were flashes and splintered images. Nothing that was coherent enough to understand or try and decipher. Their minds really are fucked.

I did check the documents in the Director's office before having my ... fill. It was a gluttonous feast this evening. I'm sure there will be quite the kerfuffle on the news tomorrow. I promise I didn't touch any of the witches (well maybe one, but I behaved). Just the asshole staff, which were tested and vetted before I began ... redecorating. Anyways, the admittance records show the location where all the witches were found. Someone really didn't cover their tracks well.

I'm headed home to discuss with Damian our next plan of action. I think we should go to the coven grounds, since they're all fucking nuts or vegetables currently - they won't mind ... and see what we can find there.

Maybe they were practicing something that Marconius wanted. That's how the Kiasyd work right? Supernatural Fae best practices? Hah. Sucking minds as intelligence fuel. I still don't understand why now, after all this time, they just left them to be found.

There has to be a reason.
September 04, 2020 04:38 am

Damian Veron

In the dark, her madness shines like moonlight. It leaves me howling like the wolf.

Ides of March. 2020.

"This is where they found them."

In the catatonic stillness of asphyxiating midnight, a black Jaguar had stealthily purred to a stop in front of the vine covered wrought-iron gates. The earth quietly settling in its wake. Through the dark of the cabin, a pair of reptilian eyes scanned the desolate surroundings in scything scrutiny. Tonight, the dulcet splendor of her voice had held a sense of cold purpose. She was breathing brutality in hushed whispers and wicked incantations. Maddening, majestic, baleful sensations of a lithe coquette, harmoniously detached from the decay of morality.

Through it all, the devil had remained a portrait of composed silence. Almost, irritatingly so for the demoness. The brooding, malevolent Caesar, what tempests brew within the metallic depths of his eyes; as if he was to blink, would swallow hell itself into the abyss of his deviating ecstasy. It is within those angelic tombs of frigid onyx that hold so much damnation, and pledge the violence of sinful indulgence to the reptilian Rex Diabolus. Veni, Vidi, Vici.

Slowly, he stepped out of the car and into the cold night of the Black Forests. Midnight shadows sweeping across his form with his every motion; each one deliberate, playing a vital role in the art of nighttime illusion. Blackened nails peeling away the yellow and black barricade tapes, they climbed over the gates to land inside the walled premises. Dead leaves and dirty ground crunched beneath their feet, the mysteries of the night slowly unraveled with every step as they snaked their way through the short path that lead to the main entrance of the abandoned two-storied mansion.

The vampire's gaze swept coolly across the scene. A deathly, unsettling disquiet, thick like a blanket of fog had settled upon the coven grounds. Misery had found home here, it now lounged in silence, poisoning the earth and smiling decay. Darkness lingered all around as they stood under the clawing shadow of the large, decrepit structure that loomed over them; like a blind and hollowed monster ready to swallow them whole. Crossing the threshold, a creeping sense of dread lingered in the air. As if all happiness and solace had been sucked out from the fabric of space. It was a place of desolation, a haunted ruin where the wandering ghosts have long lost their voice. Perennially trapped in the panic of an aphonic scream.

And into the belly of the dragon, we go.

The daunting main door creaked shut behind and they were sucked into the dark void of the endless hallway. Pupils dilated, nocturnal eyes shimmered like black embers in the veil of darkness. Silently, they continued to traverse the dank, creaking hallway, spiraling their way down the staircase to the basement that seemed to be sunk into a deep sense of pestilential gloom. Ashen soot and smoke from the fire still clung to the musty air down below. The police would have searched the place clean of whatever that survived the flames, but there could be remnants, memories of the crime left behind, hidden from the mortal eyes. Great power and great violence, always leaves a trace.

And so does magic.

Dark magic. There was glamour here, a veil of enchantment hiding the things that should not be seen. Thick enough to even keep those vampiric eyes at bay, but strong enough for him to sense it. It buzzed like static in the air. "Something's not right." They were the first words to have slipped from those sinful lips all evening. Ever since the return from his sudden disappearance, the dark being had slunk into a state of quiet repose. He had turned inwards, channeling his psyche into a shrunken ball; A singularity of chaotic energy and composed rage. A black hole that devoured all that were brave or foolish enough to step into his event horizon.

He was drawn to the large charred table at the end of the room. There were shards of shattered vials and burnt bits of parchment littered amongst the ashen ruin. With a keen eye he perused the items, sniffing the scent off the broken glass. It drew a memory, a flicker of cognizance, a ravened brow rising in intrigue. "Hmm... bestial oil", his words were almost a question onto himself, brows furrowing with curiosity stark on his visage. Though, his voice had stirred something in the dark, awoken a slumbering demon, crawling silently now on it's fours through the veil of smoke still rising from the charred hardwood floor.

With each padded step it drew closer, like impending doom, creeping towards him in the shadows, sharp claws and predatory teeth on the prowl. It smelled of evil and ancient rot, for in the heart of dissonance, one wouldn't find innocence. Like a cold chill up the spine, it would brush against his feet and he jumped on top of the table with a start, "Wha' the fuck was that?!" Hackles raised, senses high on alert and adrenaline pounding his temples, reptilian eyes scanned the floor, and through the miasma and coiling shadows, two golden irises stared back at him; two golden eyes, and a Cheshire smile. "A cat, it's a fuckin' cat." He gruffed, straightening his suit jacket and stepped back on the creaking floor.

On bended knee, he picked up the black-furred feline, and she purred as he cradled her against his chest. A soft, gentle caress of a dead hand petting her crown and stroking her ears. "And who are you, mischievous prankster?" Eyes catching eyes in the knowing, a slow slink of his head and the feline mirrored his movements, and meow-ed. That ravened brow would rise again in curiosity, as if peeling away the mask of glamour, staring deep into her mind's eye. There was a silent exchange, in the currency of thoughts and subtle gestures. A dark smile would curve those lips in a moment of enlightenment, infectious and scintillating in its form. He knew why the Kiasyds had come here. What lured them out of the shadows after centuries past, what they wanted, so bad.

"The witches, they're.. Shapeshifters"
September 05, 2020 12:38 am

Pheenyx

"Something's not right."

His words shattered her contemplative reverie, raking her skin with his somber timbre. Honestly, she wasn't sure if the beast was ever going to speak again. Hell, he still hadn't told her where he'd disappeared to over a week ago when she went hunting in the Archives. She left her notes and theories to him in written form, since conversation seemed absent on his to-do list. However, irritated or not, he had finally spoken. But she wasn't prepared for it as they skulked through the remains of the huge house. The suddenness of the syllables reverberating through the eerie basement as she followed him were left hanging in the air, as a response escaped her.

Instead, she looked more meticulously around the pit of a room, trying to sense what he was clearly sensing. Other than the disarray due to catastrophic flames, she could sense nothing out of the ordinary. What was he getting at? She watched him make his way to the other end of the large space, reaching for this and eyeing that. Still, she remained steadfast and silent at the base of the stairs, waiting for him to enlighten her with whatever it was he thought he was feeling.

There was a statement made beneath breath from his end of the room, and she chewed on a lip, crossed her arms and leaned up against a soot-soaked beam. There was so much more to the house. She decided to let him ponder in the charcoal and ash by himself while she explored elsewhere; cover more ground. It made sense. She was just about to turn and say she was going upstairs when out of the corner of her eye there was an explosion of movement, as her hulk of a husband s p r u n g on top of the table, kicking over remnants of potion making and science experiments, and let loose with a horrified shriek, "Wha' the fuck was that?!"

"A cat, it's a fuckin' cat."


Of all the things, in all the world, in all the time she'd existed, this was hands down the most hilarious thing she had, and would ever bear witness to. With a maddening ricochet of pure, genuine elation, she doubled over, eyes seized shut, mouth frozen in silent glee, hands wrapped at her waist to keep her insides from spilling out, and laughed until her sides ached and tears spilled from the corner of her eyes.

This lasted at least five minutes.

Maybe a few minutes longer.

Pheenyx grinned from ear to ear, wiping at the porcelain beneath her burgundy jewels, clearing the residue from the laughter-tears. With every passing second she tried to compose herself, and at the last moment of reconnecting eyes with this terrifying, monstrous, evil vampire she'd married, she would again find the laughter creeping up from her belly, uncontrollable and clawing for escape.

"I'm sorry. I'm sorry! I can't help it! Oh, my little, sweet, terrible, menacing devil." The amusement lifted the mood of the air between them, seeming to wash away all the past frustrations. She finally took a deep breath in, settled onto the bottom step (because aching ribs), caring nothing about the dust that would accumulate on the back of her black denim, and smiled brightly.

The first time, in a very, very long time.

"Okay, I think I'm good now."

A small chuckle as she continued to settle down. She watched as he coddled the cat, still amused at his horror at such a usually harmless animal. But as she admired him from afar, something shifted in his visage and she canted her head slightly in question and concern. Then he spoke, knowledge dawning on them both as the words fell into the space.

"The witches, they're.. Shapeshifters"

"Shapeshifters ..." She tightened her jaw, eyes looking around the room once more and seeing it for what it truly was. Science experiments and potion mixing indeed.

"Is that what Marconius would be after?" She paused. "Of course it would be. But why? What could he be up to?" She could see his brow furrow deeper in consideration of the question, trying to silently theorize as he so often did. Before he could offer any suggestions on the matter, she spoke quietly, "It's to hide. If they aren't as they've always been appearance wise, no one would ever find them. And then the Lasombra would no longer be looking for them. They could walk freely amongst the humans with no repercussions. And we wouldn't have a clue. No one would."

"It's genius," she muttered, spark renewed. "I'm going to go look upstairs and see if I can find anything else, you stay down here and see if you can unearth any more demons." She smirked at him as he nodded, only catching the end of her sentence and glaring at her as she disappeared into darkness.

+++

"Damian!" She called for him, unsure of where he was at exactly. She stood in an office at the end of the hall on the top floor, leaning over an expansive U-shaped executive desk. The elegant craftsmanship of the solid walnut was rare, and she did not hide her awe as she inspected the piece. Absolutely stunning.

The roof in here was half caved in, starlight and moonshade creeping in through the ceiling to illuminate the dregs of paperwork scattered nonsensically on top of the desk. The fire hadn't seemed to do too much damage to it; instead the flames seemed to shutter to other areas surrounding it. Magic?

"Too bad it won't fit in the Jag."

She pulled open each drawer, slide by slide, flipping through insignificant letters and notes. Minutes passed and her impatience began sidling its way back in. But finally, something caught her eye.

A calendar and an image.

A postcard of the Cathédrale Notre Dame de Strasbourg was paper-clipped to the left side of the month of April. Tuesday the 7th was circled multiple times in bright red ink.


The next full moon.
Hallowed grounds.
All magic has a cost.


"Gotcha."
September 10, 2020 12:36 am

Damian Veron

In the kingdom of ashes and bones, night-satin slipped slowly through the hourglass of time. Slinking from room to room in the charred charnel house, his movements were akin to lacquered cogs, succeeding every inch in silent brutality. A prowling beast, feral as any monster untouched by humanity. Serpent cunning and devious fixation flickering like rabid sickness in the hollow dispassion of his dauntless gaze, he lurked through the blackened hallways and charred remains; a ghostly spectre. Though, it was the ghosts of these ruins that spoke to him. Feline purrs and catacomb whispers caressed the senses, nocturnal nightmares left behind in the aftermath of decimation, feasting on the the scar tissue of his damaged psyche.

Drawn deeper into the pit of ruination, he follows the sound of chattering teeth and hushed curses seeking from the shadows. Serpentine movements gracefully carrying the hellish creature towards the boundless wreckage of the great hall that used to be the witches' covenstead. The astral temple of their high priestess of magic, manifested to physical reality by sheer will, now razed to the ground. A strange energy thrummed and bristled against his skin as phantom footsteps silently stepped into the hall. The flickering vestiges of ancient magic, not of this world, crackling against his fingertips and creeping up the staircase of his spine.

And the smell. That smell.

The scent of honey and lavender, spice and ripe fruit. Exotic, yet strangely familiar, as if savored in some vivid dream, or blurred reality. The essence of fine delicate blooms serenely plucked from Babylonian gardens that effused such wretched ambrosial aroma that he was frozen in his spot in contemplation. The enticement of its vapor clouding the scorched landscape of the room in choking consummation, burning his lungs and amplifying chaos in his wired mania.

Visions of recent events sealed to his memory flashed before his eyes in a frenzied blur. Faces, so many faces; the named, nameless and the forgotten, each considered and swiftly disregarded, till they all crawled back into the prison of his subconscious and only one remained. The deal-making harlot. The wily fucking imp of a sorceress. The incessant invader of his dreams. No. No, no, no, no, no. Impossible. It couldn't be. 'fate. fate! fate! fate! fate..' The hysterical mutterings of the stupefied witches as recited by the demonic Goldilocks now resonated through the tempest of his mind. The word, it made no sense; unrestrained ramblings of an unhinged mind he had disregarded previously. But, was it possible that they actually meant-

'Damian!'

The hourglass shattered. Demon eyes blinked, drawn back to reality. Peeled away from his thoughts in magnetic recoil, focus shifted to the call of his firebird in an instant. Pulling himself away from the room, he swiftly followed her voice. Each step taking him farther away from the scent and easing the tribulations of his chaotic mind. He soon discarded his crazy thoughts as nothing more than grappling with his own paranoia. A contemptuous smirk darkening his hellenistic visage at the absurdity of his own mind's conjurations. It sometimes, almost got the better of him. Sometimes. Almost.

Like a wintry breeze he was back around her, standing before her yet again, like some dark statue erected to honor and appease the Gods. Charcoal shadows crept over heavy-lidded eyes where only the stars gleamed, as if in those midnight eyes all the secrets of the universe were locked behind ebony vaults. "You found something?" Her Cheshire grin did not go unnoticed as she handed him the calendar with the clipped post card. Slowly sauntering around the table, sharp claws raked along the woodwork till he came to a halt, casually leaning back against the solid walnut while his gaze perused the information gained. This, is what they needed. A heading to the final playground where all the demons will come to play.

"So, the sinners hide in the house of saints, how quaint." He mused aloud, shoulders rolling forward as he pushed himself off the woodwork in a serpent slither, drawing himself closer to wrap her in his embrace. His eyes so deep, craving, adoring and burning with such violent ferocity, boring deep within her demon soul. Leaning closer still, lips were left lingering at a breath's width from hers. "Now, now. Wipe that grin off, darling, one mustn't be vulgar." He smirked; dark mischief dancing in black shimmer of the void. Hidden deep beneath, there was adoration there, a tender flame left flickering in the mausoleum of his cold, dead heart.

"You do know what this means, don't you?" Ravenesque brow raised in a quiet warning, foreboding of things to come, "We might not come back from this." Could this really be, the end. Only time and the fickle mistress of fate could tell, though, one thing was for certain. They will not go gently into the light; rage, rage against the dying of the night.

Stepping out of the ruins, they were released to the night's iniquity. His wired mania rimming with bloodshot intentions, glanced his surroundings with carnal intensity, taking it all in with brash carelessness and profound attention. Hypnotic stare raked the starry heavens, searching for the last of its purity for his own poison to infect. A predatory hunger etched in the simple precision to which his joints rolled with every step; like blood and wine spilling from one chalice to the other. A general grace which befits the quiver and quake of their movements; and his presence seemingly provokes the air it greets. The earth is swallowed beneath his impervious figure, lost to the phantom who purged it of it's serenity.

And, the black-furred feline followed.

"Oh, by the way, Salem, the cat, she's coming with us."
September 10, 2020 11:10 pm

Damian Veron

There's a place in the dark where animals go
You can take off your skin in the cannibal glow


Midnight. 8th April 2020.
Cathédrale Notre Dame de Strasbourg.

Night was a casualty here; wrapped in the shroud of winter's demise, it basked in the glow of spring's first haloed moon. Death and rebirth, the wake of one and the awakening of another announced in the somber toll of bells now resonating in the quiet chill of the night. A winter's lament. A symphony to warm a cold, dead heart. Perched upon a stone bench, demon eyes would stare at the solitary spire of cathedral in some dark admiration; a masterpiece of Gothic art, draped in a blanket of fog and mist, as if haunted by the ghost of winter past.

Behind the composed visage, his mind was a ticking timebomb of fatalistic chimera, a silent promise of a post-apocalyptic fantasy of nevermore. Here he lies, back from the grave, the zombified epitome of a fallen angel, all goodness tortured and maimed, forever lost to the cause and sense of morality. Nothing is to be expected but viperous savagery, as from the aspic vitriol of his venomous ardor breeds all the contempt of blistering spite. It flourishes in his shadow, wretched and deranged in all the diabolical workings of the devil's sick affection. There he crawls and thrives, the Leviathan and his forked tongue.

Next to him, the demoness twitched. Manicured fingers dug into his thigh in ravenous ache for misery and war. The scent of coaxing death and riled hunger splintered the air as it passed through her nostrils, eager to gorge herself in the flesh of men and monsters alike. Rapt in the fever, ferocity lingered in the pout of her bloodstained lips, so tinged in the prelude to violence. A pallid hand came to rest upon hers, like a cold balm to soothe the beast so ready to be unleashed. Calm.

"And so it begins..."

Vaporous breath pushed from his peeled lips, he had risen, and so would she; the demonic duo moving now with purpose towards the main entrance of the cathedral. He was a warfare machine bred by the ravage of lust and thirst for power, a solitary figure left standing among the masses that rot. His bones rolled and jut in maniacal fervor, in a violent grind, drumming his virulence forth with every conquering step from the depths of despair. There is not a story he hasn't lived, not a heart he hasn't broken (and eaten), not a God he hasn't sought to crush beneath his feet. And as far as this fable goes, sodden in the ways of bloodshed and betrayal, he would seek to finish such a chronicle as he always does - signing his name on the divine display of artistry in black ink, with a black, black heart.
September 13, 2020 11:36 am

Damian Veron

Stealth steps carried them over the threshold into the house of the false god. His presence sucking the piety out of the very air he breathes only to replace it with his pestilence. Rows of flickering white candles ascended with each lick of an arcane zephyr - shadows rising and constantly toiling in the depths of the dark confinements of the Cathedral. Bathed in the muted amber glow, his contemptuous gaze raked along the enormous pillars and arches, bathing them in its toxicity. Make no mistake, the devil was a man of culture and taste; he adored the artistry, the masterpiece of grandiose Gothic architecture, and abhorred what it all stood for. So much beauty created in their testament to ignorance. Wasting their prayers to a god that will never answer. If only he could show them the true path, of what it would be like to get on their quivering knees and worship Death, again. Oh, what grand temples they would build in his name, what beauty they would create! He would be their savior. Their one true lord. Delivering them from the binds of madness; to suffer at the hands of his own.

Blackend claws scraped along the pews absently as he glanced over the stained glass windows depicting the nineteen emperors of the Holy Roman Empire. The wafts of incense smoke rose, twining and coiling like small smoke-induced serpents and sylphs in intricate tango or burlesque waltz. The strong and pungent scents of fumigation incense, benzoin, balsam, frankincense and myrrh, merging in preparation and dispelling of any past and present invading spirits. They were going to need a lot more.

Drawn deeper into the heart of the Cathedral, they would cross the Pillar of Angels, frozen in representation of the Last Judgement. What deliriously whimsical tales these mortal minds spin. He finally stood in front of the white sandstone pulpit, staring up at the scene of crucifixion in mirth and vehemence. From his iniquitous lungs he sprung godless whims, infidel croons and heretic murmurs, vehemently trampling the pale relics of holy paragons, ardently demolishing the soft, dulcet prayers of ordained minstrels. A dagger through the rugged scars of fastidious strands, methodically disemboweling the angelic ruse of a devout thespian while their trembling fingers clutched, and intoxicating screams resonated to the tune of wicked malevolence, severed scripture, and diabolical devotion. He consumed the Eucharist; bread dipped in sacramental wine upon the altar, now placed upon his tongue and swallowed. Have no fucking doubt, he will drink the blood and devour the body of their savior. A vampire's perfect feast, in the hellbound appetite of his lips.

A harrowing cry suddenly broke through the ether, drawing his attention and disrupting the communion. A child's wail hurriedly muffled and choked in the deep fissures of the Cathedral. Yet another element of sacrificial lamb to slaughter and savour - blooming with innocence and beauty for the world to gush over, yet on this night would become a song to tragedy. All dark magic had a price, and it was no different when manipulating the very essence of physical beings. The dark gods had to be appeased to grant favor of those dark benedictions which presided and ruled over the very fabric of reality; physical and metaphysical.

His features were quick to change, breathing calamity now in the merest, slightest hiss, he crawled deeper into the bowels of the Cathedral where the light from the main hall never reached. The shadows welcomed him like a hankering lover parched for his taste. Smoke and mirrors, in the macabre waltz of umbra and penumbra he prowled with the hunger of a famished beast, carnivoruous and lusting in the consuming fantasies of ravenous desecration. Devastation. His mind a savage vexation of an aching monster.

They approached the dark sanctum at the back where the only respite from blinding blackness was the column of silvery moonlight that filtered through the clerestory, forming a milky pool on the center of the marble and granite floor. There he would feel it again, the same strange energy he had felt in the ruins of the covenstead, only stronger now, crackling against his fingertips viciously and raising the hair on the back of his neck. Though, it was the smell that had the growling beast inside him pulling at the chains, rattling the cage. That fucking smell. Honey and lavender, spice and ripe fruit. She is in my head like a nightmare. The Parasite Eve.

It would seem there was more that tainted the air in the room than his own pestilential gloom; soffocating the last breath of sanctity, it lurked behind the veil in a game of hide and seek. Unmoved in his grim expression, saturnine irises gleamed in ghostly hues of the moonlight. That listless defiance cradled in the lines of his countenance, obsidian stones burned with a brooding ambiance; unable to deny the simmering rage which stained the walls of his anchored thoughts. Such magnificent chaos, teasing calamity, in the preservation of his fiery figure. He was the uneasy calm before the storm, ready to set off.

"Come out, come out, wherever you are.." Viperous whispers and taunting the devils; within the shadowy depths of this cursed sanctum stood the lord of python macabre himself, a ghostly black shadow that loomed among the gracious hall and painted nightmares; his crown an entanglement of broken halos and angel bones. In this biblical scene of hellish nightmares come to life, it was time to play, and the snake charmer had run out of toys.
September 14, 2020 10:30 pm

Pheenyx

And then she was Misery, the Revenge of Lilith. Anathema to all that was pious and holy - blessed by the Devil's benediction.

'We might not come back from this.'

Visions of painting the Romans red danced across her mind, performing for her a lost, and wholly nostalgic recital of when she had purified and cleansed the last consecrated holy place of its defiantly devoted. Years, it had been years since she had touched that level of decadence. And here she was now, in this place of renown, permission granted to ruin and rage. She could barely contain herself.

Burgundy hues were revealed as she opened her eyes and followed the natural sight path upwards, towards the heavens. She smiled, peaceful. It might all be burning before the night was over, and that made her dark, little heart happy. Eyes melted back towards the horizon line as she watched Damian begin his sojourn to the lectern. She followed suit and glided towards the dais with the grace of an angel, eyes capturing the story of the stained glass windows as she went. One in particular caught her attention and she stopped. On the south side of the nave, there was The Devil and the Damned. Lips swirled upwards in smile and she elegantly bowed as the moonlight cascaded through the grays and red of the opaque depiction.

"Your majesty." There was no jest in the melodious tone of her words. With a flourish, she spun and continued her way forward. With the research they had done the last few weeks prior to the full moon tonight, one particular piece of history piqued her interest entirely. The astronomical clock located to the left of the dais and the Statue of Angels.

She stopped at the Statue and tapped on her pout with a pointed claw. So much detail and effort put into these everlasting figurines. Everything inside her screamed ruination and desecration. Yes, there was a bigger focus here this evening, but she couldn't stop herself. If this was meant to be their last night, she was going to do it while exceeding expectations. Digging her nail along the inside of her left wrist, a swell of merlot appeared and she dragged her middle finger through the liquid. She climbed up the statue with a predator's ease and drew an upside down cross on each forehead of the lowest tier of angels. Simple enough to send the devout to frenzy, granted, Our Lady lasted through the morn.

She hopped back down, sucking on the bloodied finger, savoring her own sweet essence. She ran her tongue along her forearm, abolishing the wound and cleaning the skin of excess residue.

Next, the clock. Eyes ravaged every small piece of the structure. She admired and found the beauty in every minute detail. Here, too, she climbed over the gate that was meant to keep the unworthy from handling the treasures. Once inside the barrier, she again climbed up the centuries old piece of architecture and perched on the ledge, in the center, beneath the main face of the clock. Leaning back on palms down-turned, she began pondering next actions to pursue their mission, but fiery sight found rapture below, shattering every notion heretofore.

Instantly, the firebird was charmed and transfixed by her husband's actions below; she, a voyeur, feasting on the sight of his taking Communion. She watched with mirth, as the the Body of Christ was dipped in the Blood, and at last placed to His lips. She savored as he savored, a heathen's hedonism, practicing a paramount ceremony in this hallowed place. How the angels wept. She smiled, breathing in their sacrilege, allowing it to fill her lungs to capacity.

A cry. An enchanting scream of anguish from somewhere unseen. Haze of thought was cleared and she swiftly made her way back down to Damian, mind alert and refreshed to their course. She tucked into his wake as they made their way through the darkness, deeper and deeper into the confines of the cathedral. Marconius was here. They had been right. Malice and ravenous hunger suffocated her emotions, reclaiming their rightful place.

It was time.

The electricity in the smaller space burned and bit at her skin. She had never experienced anything like it. "What is that?" She looked to him but he was again lost in thought, in contemplation of things she was not yet privy to. Eyes scoped the room, noticing first the way the moonlight was almost carved into the center of the room, creating a dynamic focal point and illuminating everything within. She waited, posed for ambush, thoughts clear. If Marconius has survived this long, and none of the Seekers had ever returned, it was for more than simply not finding. Maybe it was the finding that had been the death of them.

'Come out, come out, wherever you are ...'
September 16, 2020 08:27 pm

Virelai Tylwyth


This was not her way.

Tremulous moonlight spilled into the chapel, empty of tapestries and pews, of candlelight and holy script and saintly statues. The conqueror god, who should have resided here, was nowhere to be found. Nor would he be in these small constructs, buildings that were against that being's own desires if you believed his books. Foolish humans, always picking and choosing which bits of their own beliefs fit their actions. It was selfish, Virelai thought, as she cast her gaze once more around the room. Even though it had been gutted, in its own way, it was no less grandiose than the Cathedral as a whole.

True, the building was beautiful, stunning even if you liked mortal architecture. At the very least, it was gilded and gleamed in the dark night enough to attract the eye. Even her own. But Vir was not here to enjoy the lovely scenery or take in the sights of this land. She had no interest in them or anything to do with this dreadful place that pulsed with dull and rusted power grown from hundreds of thousands of worshipers pouring bits of their soul into the very floors and walls of the Church year after year.

No, Virelai was here because she had no choice but to be, chained to the events that were taking place by a manipulative family she claimed no relation to. Her jaw clenched as the memory of her coming to be here resurfaced and her nails raked through silvery strands of hair as she glanced at the scene unfolding before her.

She had been playing guardian for over a month now to these strange and unsettling beings, neither fae nor vampire, neither living nor dead in Virelai's eyes. They cared not for the laws of man, nor their morals, much in the way that she and all Fae did not care. But they were worse, somehow. They did not delight in the cries that rang into the night, did not relish the hunt or the kill, the give and take of the earth and all around them. They cared only for advancement, knowledge at whatever price was demanded for it. They would pay and think nothing of it, much as they had chosen to do with the boy. And they did not see themselves as evil beings. She could not begrudge them their thirst for knowledge, nor how they acquired it. They were calm, dignified, clever even. All things Virelai admired. However, they were just short of honorable even to Vir's standards. Of course, she would say this about most Fae. Perhaps her standards were too high.

The child was crying again, screaming until his voice was cracked and his throat aching. Virelai pressed her fingers to her temple and ground against the skin. It was difficult to concentrate with him wailing like a banshee, not that she blamed him or minded the sound specifically. And she was already struggling to maintain the glamour keeping the silence and sustaining the veil that allowed them to be hidden in plain sight.

It was not a drain on her power, this much even a child could do. However, that grating selfish power that the humans had brought and infected the earth with snarled and snared, tearing at her control. Her greedy spirit wished to consume all that raw energy despite having nowhere to hold it and this caused her efficiency to slip. A shrill cry whipped past her and tore through the veil, short and sweet to the ears, before she managed to get a better grip on the gossamer fabric that concealed them.

“Enough!” She bit out the word and dropped pale arms to her side gliding towards the group and the boy sat on the floor in the center of the moonlight. She leaned down, hair fluttering wild and soft like strands of silk around her face, locks writhing like snakes. “Little boy. You are making this more unpleasant for all of us. If you cannot be quiet on your own I can help you. You choose, tongue or vocal chords hmm?” Vir smiled and tapped the child's chin in an act that almost seemed motherly, affectionate. If not for the gleam of gold in her eyes and the cold twist of her lips.

There was a moment of impenetrable silence, a hush falling through the room as all eyes turned to her. A slender man with long white hair and black as pitch eyes looked a little longer than the others, raising an eyebrow in question while the rest of the group diverted their gazes and continued their preparations. Vir presented the man with a biting smile as she turned her face up to meet his curious stare. “Wha-”

It was the scent that she caught first – clove spice and bloodshed and the promise of destruction – and following was the subtle tug of energy writhing around inside her, boasting familiarity. The press of her nail against the chin of the child was removed as Virelai turned, shifting and rising in a fluid motion as her elegant gait took her to the edge of the barrier she had created.

Just in time, it seemed, to hear the soft growling voice emanating from the other side.
"Come out, come out, wherever you are.."

Silvery laughter reverberated off the stone walls as Vir threw her head back in howling amusement. She could feel him there and she pressed her hands against the ghostly thin shimmer that served as a curtain, a brick wall, an ocean between them. “Have you come to play?” She whispered, voice sliding soundlessly through the veil as nothing more than a soft breathy breeze. “Or perhaps you are here to take care of these chains.”

Vaewen. What is it?”

Virelai's lips curled in annoyance as Marconius' voice returned her from her reverie. “Stay here and be silent. We have an uninvited guest. And there is no time to divert from your ritual.” She would send him away quickly and finish her work here. It was better to keep her precious vessel out of harm's way after all.

Smoothing the nonexistent wrinkles from her flowing, fern green dress, she flicked her hands to readjust the fur lined cloak draping her shoulders and stepped through the veil. He was not alone, that delightful puppet, that would be king, but rather with another. A lovely blond, all sharp edges and vain beauty, filled with delicious and violent potential. Her scent was familiar, one of those that clung to him when they met. And yet, clinging was not the right word. Because his scent was there too, on her, inseparable. Virelai's eyes remained on that woman for a moment, raking over every inch. Her lips parted as if to speak. But, this one would have to wait.

Virelai's eyes turned to the male and she craned her head to the side, smiling eerily. “Samhael.” Her voice dripped honey and arsenic. “What are you doing here?”


September 19, 2020 11:23 pm

Damian Veron

Swift, swift, you dragons of the night. That dawning may bare the raven's eye!

'Have you come to play?'

Alone within the tenebrous darkness of his own mind - a voice too familiar reached out through the veiled barriers of dimension and time. Impish, accentuated whispers traipsing the familiar precipice of audacity and insanity crawled inside his ear, teasing his senses with the venomous nectar of a parasitic angel's breath. He felt the prickle, the listless bite that stung an ache in the hollow of his patience, wearing thin. Was she real, or a demented conjuration of his imagination? Manufacture dooms in your head, and one day you will surely go mad.

"Please, tell me you heard that."

His virulent gaze slowly slanted to catch Pheenyx in the corner of his eyes, the sneering devil looking for a validation. This fantasy had condemned him to an endless waking sleep, the beautiful hopeless psyche of a tormented archangel, and bound him to the skin of his rancorous addictions. His insatiable thirst for power and control, over all beings in heaven, hell and in-between. Afflicted by a ghost, a siren, the spirit of that which moves us endlessly on in the sick delusion, he was deliciously hollowed by his shameless avarice.

It was then, he saw the light. A small tear in the very fabric of space; delicate fingers adorned with precious rings and trinkets, sliding through and slowly peeling the veil. Out, she stepped through the schism, birthing before their own eyes under the light of the pregnant moon, out of nothingness. A hellion child of oblivion, nurtured by nothing but her own indulgent appetites and rapacity. There she stood, ripped from his dreams and draped in glamour and haughty pride, as real as real can be.

He wanted to reach out and touch her, to pick her apart at the seams till the blood flowed in vindication of his own sanity.

'Samhael.' She called him by the ancient name; the moniker with which she binds him to the symbiotic treaty between the devil and the damsel deranged. She would feed his boundless lust for power in return for a favor owed, to be called upon at the time of her choosing. The other end of the bargain he had no intention of keeping.

'What are you doing here?'

Danger raked the seams with his unholy presence, the advent of chaos rattling and writhing beneath the calculating disposition of his leer as her gaze shamelessly raked over his firefly. Look away, lovey, or have you come to surrender those pretty eyes? Dull moonstruck glow captured the cannibal in a sense of regal carnality, night's imperial kiss chilling the air in vexatious discontent. The serpent head canted to the side, the vicious, menacing stare of his coal black eyes scoured along the lines of her delicate countenance, focusing on the primordial fortune of a fly in his web, devouring her with the easy, glowering sweep of his imperious gaze. If looks could kill, she would be ash beneath his feet.

"Oh, you know, the Lord came to me in my dreams, told me I needed to be, sanctified. So, here I am." A subtle ascension of a ravened brow, the seductive curve of his mouth twisted into an aching smile, deceitful. Dangerous. The usual monstrous charm of his swarthy gaze pulsing with life. "And, what about you? Here to confess your sins again, are we? Well, I am no savior, darling, but I'll gladly take you to your knees."

Sweet promises of a dare, a threat, filled air - No light would shine on a ground soon to be drenched in his wild savagery, no light would shine and reveal to those who watched with wide eyes from behind the veil, looking into his savage garden. Their lovely bones to be buried deep beneath this grotesque paradise. Horror, fueled by the sharp curves of Apollonian artistry; they would soon find him in the deepest stages of frenzy, eyes alight with that enchanting black fire. It was only a matter of when. She was running on Devil's time. Testing his patience, and inviting damnation.

"Enough games. Out with them. Now." His voice turned dark into a schizophrenic nightmare, simmering with a promise of destruction. A grim quality taking hold of those sharp and roguish angles, while something temporal and wicked clawed a carnivorous path beneath the surface. The etch of stoic and stark cradled his expression, as it settled in the depths of his hungry eyes. Deviance laid along the lines of his gaze. He observed the path of the moon, soon to sink below the opening of the clerestory, judging and calculating his time. It underlined his intention, as his lids slid with a lazed stupor over each onyx jewel. "You are running out of time."

Tick tock. Tick tock.
September 21, 2020 12:07 am
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