The Return of the Order - Act 8
Act 8: The Wolf Demon
The portal opened close to where her father held court in the demon realm. The air was hot and thick with the screams of those unfortunate enough to cross the demons at the top of the food chain. The screams and cries of the humans whose souls suffered eternal torment in the lower pits added to the cacophony. It hadn't always been like this; human interference continually constructing the world and the afterlife in their own image had led to changes in this realm as it had in the angel realm. Humans blamed their gods for suffering, many of those considered gods and devils, blamed humans for devastating their realities and looked to exact revenge. While Louisa understood those that harboured such thoughts, she found it hard to blame an entire race for the actions of a minority in each generation.
As she moved forward, she felt a presence behind her, the creature cast a shadow over her, grinning, fangs dripping with saliva, thinking her an easy meal. Louisa smirked, realising that she was still in her human form, she transformed and grabbed the creature by what passed as a neck. Squeezing tightly, she brought its face down to hers.
Realisation and fear gripped the creature.
“Your highness, my humblest apologies, you did not smell like you.”
“You will never smell again if you ever even consider making a meal of me again. I should rip you to pieces for your insolence.”
The creature hissed and grinned; more shapes appeared on the edge of Louisa's vision. They encircled her, their voices dripping venom; she could hear their thoughts as they approached. Word of the binding had already reached the demon realm, and the lower creatures were ready to take advantage of what they believed would be a further weakening of Typhon's position.
Louisa smirked, "Such a shame, you had such promise," and with that, she raised her free hand, stretched her talons across the creature's head and pulled it clean off its neck. She spread her wings and her arms, holding the spurting head high so that it could be seen by all approaching her.
“Do not think me weakened by his absence, I remain the daughter of Typhon, challenge me openly if you dare, but witness what happens when you cross one of the dragon’s blood.”
Dropping the head, she reached her talons into the creature’s chest cavity and ripped out the still beating heart. Turning slowly so they could all see clearly, she devoured the heart before incinerating the dripping remains of the creature.
Howls rang out around her, and the creatures slunk back into the shadows. Scooping down and picking up the head, Louisa lifted herself into the air and hovered above the fleeing creatures, grinning she sent flames after them, close enough to singe feathers and fur. Her warning complete she continued the short journey to her father.
Her father sat on his throne with Ciel at his side. She approached the throne, pushing aside the fawning creatures either trying to ingratiate themselves or who were looking for weaknesses in the still recuperating demon Lord. She caught Ciel’s eye and bowed in front of the throne. Recognising her and understanding her intent, Ciel stood and announced her.
“My Lord Typhon, the Lady Louisa, daughter to Lord Typhon and mate to Lord Malphas would approach.”
Typhon turned from the demon he had been deep in conversation with, he rose and went to Louisa embracing warmly.
“My child, rumours abound in the realm, is Malphas truly bound against his will?”
"Yes, father, it is true."
"It shouldn't be possible. The humans have grown bold in recent years, but this is unforgivable."
“There is more to tell, but I would speak to you and Ciel alone.”
Typhon roared from the room to be cleared. Murmurs rose around the room as those who would take advantage of his weakness looked for an opening. Hearing this, Louisa spun and raised the head for the assembled demons to see. Blood dripped from the neck, pooling along her arm, adding to that already congealing on her fangs and talons.
“See what awaits you if you challenge the blood of the dragon.”
A hush descended over the remaining demons as they fled the throne room. Typhon watched proudly as his daughter commanded the room.
“You met with trouble when you arrived?”
“Only briefly, but it would seem that there are many looking to take advantage of your still weakened state.”
“Yes, and it grows worse. But enough of my troubles, what else brings you here?”
Louisa recounted the visions, the arrival of the new Lord and butler at the manor, and Undertaker’s cryptic warnings.
"Still, Adrian protects you for your mother, even at the risk of further punishment for breaking the rules." Pain was etched on Typhon's face at the memory of his lost mate. Shaking away the thoughts, he continued, "It would seem that we must face enemies at every turn."
“Yes, and they too are flouting the rules.”
She stopped speaking as another presence entered the room. Spinning around, she saw another demon Lord flanked by some of those that had fled from the throne room. The wolf demon's eyes glowed as they took in her form.
“So, it is true, Malphas is bound like a common demon, and Typhon is without his strongest ally."
“You forget yourself, Lord Amo, you openly challenge the Lord Typhon?”
“He is weak, he has no champion, there is no challenge, I simply come to claim what is rightfully mine.”
Louisa roared, spreading her wings, she approached the wolf demon. "I act as the champion to the Lord Typhon in Malphas’ absence.”
"You do not scare me, Louisa, you are merely a half-breed that should have been eaten at birth. Stand aside now, and maybe I will find a use for you, many of my generals are not too picky how they sate their baser desires."
Louisa flew at Amo, her attack catching him off guard as her talons slashed across his chest, knocking him back. He recovered his balance before she could attack again, pouncing, his teeth closed on her leg. The baying demons at the edge of the room moved in, sensing the blood and pain from her injury.
As he bit down, piercing through her scaly skin, Louisa brought her tail around under his chin, forcing the point up into the soft flesh of his throat. He howled and released his grip, and pressing the point in deeper, she pulled, swinging the wolf demon off balance. Amo’s claws dug into the flesh of her thigh as he swung around. Louisa roared, using her wings to maintain her balance she threw Amo to the floor. Before he could right himself, she dug her talons into his neck and leapt onto his rear legs, grasping on tight with her clawed feet. He thrashed around, trying to unbalance Louisa, she lowered her wingtips to the floor, using them to steady herself as she used her other hand to grasp his upper jaw.
Blood poured from his multiple wounds and the thrashing weakened. Louisa roared and pulled, ripping the wounds further apart and increasing the blood flow. She quickly flicked her tail, dislocating his lower jaw, causing the wolf demon to howl in pain. Shifting her weight and pressing down heavily, Louisa crushed his lower legs, grinning as he whimpered. She moved off the broken body and lifted it by the neck so that all could see as the once proud wolf demon Lord Amo meet his end.
As she met the gaze of the waiting demons, Louisa faced a choice. She could rip out the heart now and feast, devouring the strength he had gained from the souls he had harvested, or she could give away her prize. She grinned, watching the faces of the expectant demons and turned to her father.
“Lord Typhon, the challenger is defeated, the prize is yours.”