I see fire.
Smoldering orange tendrils swirled in front of my vision and blurred an angry red, blinding me to all else on this hellish upright plank of wood. Hungry flames licked my neck, turned my hair to dust, and melted my fingernails. My skin was the only thing that didn’t char, but I felt it and I was the inferno; we sang together, just me and the flame. My vocal cords were raw, worn from endless hours of use, yet still, I scream while he slept on.
I wanted this, didn’t I? Yes, although this isn’t how I imagined it would go. Maybe I imagined a normalish wedding, or as normal as a wedding can be with demons as an audience…but being tortured for eternity was fine too. Maybe I will be allowed to die when he grows bored. To die at his hands would be the ultimate bliss.
I found the Emperor of Darkness likes his human form best. He sauntered up to me in it now, looking well rested and chipper and not at all like the devil who tied me to this cross.
“Hello Cwn, you are breathtaking this morning,” Satan said in a way that made me almost believe him. He drew near with a familiarity and confidence that came with ownership; the flames receded as he approached and I sighed to have a reprieve. With a passive expression, he hugged me… almost as a lover would. I found his skin to be no different than the flames.
“Yes, I know it hurts.” He sympathized, stroking my scalp where my hair should have been. I knew a moment of embarrassment for how hideous I must have appeared to him; thin from starvation and covered in blisters.
“What do you want?” I asked, but no sound came out. I could see in his face that he still understood me. Being callous seemed to get under his skin, I loved the look on his face when I sassed him. It promised that he was far from done with me. It promised that we would be together for a long long time.
Satan clicked his tongue.“Will you ever lose that atrocious attitude? Perhaps I am not pushing you hard enough.”
“You’ve been pushing fine, my lord.” My head was too heavy. I let it fall limp against his shoulder as if to prove my words true.
He didn’t pick up the subject again, instead, he surprised me. “So dear Cwn, are you ready to go back?”
“Hm?” I am too tired, I must have heard him wrong.
“Have your fantasies of infatuation with the Darkness been thoroughly crushed?”
“Are you asking if I still love you, Satan?” I did my best to keep the butterflies out of my stomach because I daren’t hope he might have feelings for me as well.
He tilted his muscular neck back to let out a hearty laugh. “Oh, nonsense. I know better than to think that lasted more than two seconds after I rejected you-”
“Wrong!” I interrupted him.
He ignored it. “I am asking if you are ready for me to send you crawling back to your master?”
I snapped my head back up to face him so fast that my vision grew blurry and dark. Fear seeped into my bones as I replied,“…I can’t go back! I made the sacrifice…”
“Oh please, a lamb is hardly–”
“I didn’t sacrifice a lamb,” I lift my head higher. “Didn’t I say that I had done the unspeakable?”
“Oh really? What, then, did you use to open the gate?”
My shoulders tightened. “Need you ask? ….I- I sacrificed the only creature HE ever loved.” My head drooped again, this time in shame. I wasn’t proud of that part.
He hooked my chin with his fingers and pulled it up. “Say it. Speak the sin that led you to my doorstep.” His voice was absolute, a low double timbre. His mouth spread so that the corners touched either ear and a snake like tongue slipped out to lick his lips. Green poison seeped out and dribbled down his armored clothes, ruining them.
My voice did not waver, “A human.”
He kissed me. I was the inferno again. The flames had rekindled on the cross and we stood in it together. I listened to his beautiful maniacal laugh, before losing consciousness.
End of Part Two. To be continued….