Azazel moved slightly in his deep unconsciousness. The sounds of battle disturbed him and called him as well – the smell of magicks, rage and fear was extremely attractive. However, he was still too weak to wake up, bound by his flesh weakened by the terrible injuries Moloch had healed – his body still needed rest to recover, even though Moloch had weaved his flesh and blood back together. The thundering over the roof and the roaring dragon outside disturbed him. Azazel coughed and tried to turn over, but the pillows at his sides were enough to help him from moving. The Demon’s lips trembled, but he still could not wake up. Strange dreams filled his sleep.

Azazel was confused and irritated. He had been walking in a thick mist for what now seemed hours… He had slight memories of a battle, and he was sure he had been wounded in it. He felt the echoes of pain in his chest, but it was somehow like if the pain was not really there. However, he was now alone and seemingly lost; the thick mist absorbed his voice, the Light, maybe it even absorbed the very Dark. All he saw was the white mist as he waded through it. Azazel reached out but his fingers did not find anything to touch. He was not afraid but angry – angry because he could not control this mist; he had no power over it, and the simple idea that he could not bend something to his will disturbed him. Azazel howled, but he couldn’t hear his own voice. He saw a silhouette ahead. Azazel ran to it, but when he was about to reach it, it vanished…

Azazel opened his eyes. He felt curious and amazed, blinking owlishly in a strange Light that hurt his eyes. Loving arms pressed his body against a female body; he rubbed his hands on his face. A small, soft and pale white hand; a rough, scaled claw. He wriggled and the female swayed him lightly.

“You say this is my son?”, a skeptical voice asked. Azazel shivered, a strange terror creeping within his soul. He looked up; three angels were looking at him, surrounding the female that held him. The light that hurt his eyes came out of them; strangely, the light was a dark force, bright but dark at the same time. The female’s face was beautiful, but shadowed by a dark anxiety. The angels he knew, but it was like seeing them by first time. One of them had white hair and a sly, crooked smile; he was more interested in his mother’s body than in him – for Azazel know now it was Lilith who held him. The other angel had raven-black hair and shimmering silver eyes open wide in wonder and piercing curiosity. The third… Azazel gasped. It was himself! His own face was looking down at him with a mix of disgust and wonder, biting his lip disdainfully. Bronze eyes narrowed, but he lacked his red mark over his left eye.

“He looks like you”, the white haired one quickly said.

“You did not do well hiding from us. Lucifer and I wanted to see what the birth process is like”, murmured the one with silver eyes.

Lilith held her child more tightly. Hissssss…

Lucifer’s brow twitched.
“Looks like you don’t trust us, Lilith”, he said with an unpleasant smile. “Our interest was purely scientific – you can believe me.”

Beside Belial appeared a fourth one – a female with crimson eyes. She reached out nonchalantly and touched the baby.
“Healthy baby; it pleases us to see… it’s a demonblood. Look at his goat foot.”

“His wings are golden like yours, but tainted in red. Interesting”, Belial said, reaching out and touching the right hand, which was scaled and red. The baby grabbed his finger and suddenly clasped the claw; a drop of blood appeared on Belial’s finger. Belial quickly pulled back and shook his hand. “Ouch!” A small smile slid on Moloch’s lips. Beelzebub laughed.
“Damn, it’s your kid all the way.”

Lucifer was not yet satisfied. His expression had not changed. Azazel swallowed in an irrational fear, looking at him in fascination. Beelzebub shrugged. “What’s so interesting about birth labor? And why did you hide? I don’t think you laid and egg, did you? Besides”, he turned to Lucifer and Belial, “if all you want is a pregnant one of our kin, I can supply you one!”

“Hardly enough, for you only attract flies”, Belial said with a smirk.

Beelzebub sulked.
“What do you know, anyway.”

Lucifer smirked and rose his hand to stop the banter. “That’s enough”, he said, his eyes blazing with unholy fire and a malevolent smile in them. “It’s a very curious thing, Lilith. The son of the Morning Star – My son. So, you think he looks like me?”, he then asked Beelzebub.

“Hell, yeah.”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow. He reached out and closing his hand on the baby’s head, he pressed his thumb on the baby’s left eye and slid it down. Azazel howled and writhed, his crying a strange mix of sobs and growls. A burning pain overwhelmed him, but he tried to fight it, despite the striking fear this being inspired him. Lucifer smirked, his eyes blazing darkly with unholy fire. A long, thin flame of the color of blood showed now on Azazel’s face across his left eye, from his above eyebrow to his cheek. Lucifer leaned over and delicately kissed Lilith’s cheek.
“I name him Azazel”, he told her before leaving with his archdemons.

Azazel shook his head and rubbed his left eye. The marking seemed to burn again; he pressed his hand on his eye…

“Lorant?” Azazel looked at his interlocutor; the man watched him with concern.
“Are you alright? Did you get something in your eye?”

“No. I’m fine”, he curtly replied. Azazel turned abruptly from the man and looked around; he found himself in a Hungarian art gallery, at a photographs exhibit. Among the attendees he saw a young woman with auburn hair – her poise and beauty struck a cord deep within the demon’s soul. He stared. He felt the need to reach out and capture her like a butterfly, hear her laughter and feel her touch…

Bend her pride to his will.

“She’s not part of the exhibit”, the man snickered in a murmur. “She’s an amateur photographer, but I’ve heard she’s good. She’s Autumn Kamaria. By the way, she’s single and a bourgeois…”
She was smiling. Her companion made her laugh. Azazel narrowed his eyes and gave a step towards her…

The mist was everywhere: white, anonymous, asphyxiating. Azazel waded through it, trying to find a way to leave that accursed Limbo…

Trapped inside his dream, Azazel was strangely aware he had been separated from reality and he needed to find his way back. All that surrounded him was the thick mist; an empty space he could not grasp and rip to pieces – something quite annoying.

The pain in his chest was almost completely gone. Azazel put his hand on his chest and sensed the steady, rhythmic beat of his heart. His thoughts wandered off to the Ritual in which he had acquired this body and how the twisted mind and will of the real baron Lorant Riktophen had been absorbed by his hellish power, as he used Moloch to canalize the pain… but the demon remembered something else. He instinctively touched his left hand in search for his wedding ring in a sudden need to touch it… A white pale hand took his and pulled back.

“Love! These are not… the ones you like.” Azazel looked up in indignation at his smiling mother. “You don’t want this”, Lilith insisted. “This is what you like.” Again, he was a child; Anastasia smiled and her guest was seemingly asleep in his chair. Azazel looked upon him – a dead human in an elegant private room. Anastasia caressed his hair, trying to bribe him away with a cookie.
“Love…”, she insisted. Azazel raised an eyebrow.

“I don’t want that”, the child contemptuously said, waving a white hand at the cookie in Lilith’s hand. “The man is dead – I already know that. Did he annoy you?”

Anastasia/Lilith paled slightly.
“He’s indisposed, my Love.”

“I won’t say anything to anyone”, Azazel said with a shrug. “But don’t treat me like if I had a short intelligence. That annoys me.”

Anastasia held him lovingly and kissed his cheek. “You are your Father all over again”, Lilith lovingly whispered in his ear, a strange passion in her voice.

NO! I am a different being. I am myself – I am not someone else! No one is like me, either!” Azazel’s bronze eyes flashed, then suddenly a blood-curdling smile of fake benevolence curled his lips.
“I am your beloved… son, mother.”

Anastasia looked at him in unnatural fascination. “Yes, my Love…”

Azazel coughed. I am the Lord of the Armies! I will Rule above all! All will bend to MY will – I am NOT He! I won’t fail! I won’t die! Azazel roared in anger, gasping for air as he felt the very flames of the Abyss rise and surround him. A choked, scornful laughter came out of his lips.
“I will rule above all!”

Azazel’s eyes shot open; his demonic senses suddenly poured the world into his conscience, overwhelming him. Azazel gasped for air and shook his head, trying to grasp his conscience and take a hold of reality on the earthly plane. With a gasp and an spasmodic contraction of his muscles, he sat up among the pillows of a bed in a dark room. His breathing still difficult, Azazel put strands of wet bluish black hair out his face. The marking or red flames across his left eye seemed to burn again; Azazel pressed his hand on it.

“Where in Hell is this place?”, he murmured. He had been bandaged and set among pillows to prevent him from moving. Azazel knew Moloch had used her skills on him… The Demon bit his lip slightly. Nothing is for free, and he was certain she should’ve taken something in return for her Healing services. But what had that been? Azazel clasped a hand on the sheets. He’d need… to find that out.
“Belial took me to the Abyss… but this is not Hell; it’s Moloch’s house – one of hers…” Azazel brushed his hand past his forehead and tried to clear up his mind.

Moloch sighed, drawing a bit of hair away from Azazel’s face. He reminded her so of his father, Lucifer… The Morning Star. They had both been once on the side of the ‘Good’, the ‘Light’, the ‘Righteous’. And it had all changed… Because of jealousy, simple greed like those humans they so despised…!
Even in all those years of his life, Azazel had not really matured beyond his childhood. Spoiled, bratty, grasping… He had only grown in power, not in his mind. It would be his downfall. Moloch regarded him with a jealous eye; if only he had been her son…! He would have been a true Prince of the Fallen, not this whining spitting crass being he was now. If Lilith hadn’t coddled him, the fool, had taught him correctly instead of concealing so much…

Azazel twitched and rolled, murmuring in his sleep. Ah… So he’s fighting it. He shall be awake, soon. She summoned a servant and ordered him to bring rich broth and a hearty wine. It would do to revive him- his wounds still weakened him. Sweet child of darkness… It was one of the few times the compassion she had left reached out. But she knew her only maternal instinct would be scorned.
“Are you awake, Young One?” She asked, her low, melodious voice distantly respectful.

Azazel took hold of the voice that reached into his senses to take a better grasp of the reality around him. He slowly opened his bronze eyes and blinked, trying to focus. Azazel felt like turning around and sleeping, but he also expected to be nursed and taken care of. A part of him though wanted to jump out of the bed and set the whole accursed city on fire.

“I’m awake…” Azazel frowned and pushed away cushions placed around him, trying to sit up. He let out a small gasp and pressed his hand over his left eye. He quickly put his hand away, seeing Moloch was watching him.
“I sense there was a battle in these grounds. I don’t want to remain in bed; I don’t have time for this…” Azazel struggled to get up.

Moloch noted his gasp- he was definitely not at full strength. They had injured him badly. She said nothing, though, veiling any emotion in her features.
“You’re not quite up to your full strength, Young One,” she said soothingly. “Allow our servants to care for you.” She gestured, and a servant propped him up and placed several plush cushions behind his back so that he might sit up comfortably. Another placed the tray over his lap, a sort of small writing-desk like contraption that did not rest on his legs. On it rested the broth, from which richly scented steam rose. There was also a coarse, though good, bread, and honeyed wine and butter. “Eat. Michael and Gabriel tried to wound you badly, Azazel, and you must regain your power before you go to avenge yourself. The leader of the armies of the Fallen must not be disgraced, after all.” She leaned back.

“We had a pet here when Belial brought you… We had almost had him bound, but a device of the Host prevented my powers from permeating his soul. Our mark is still on him, though we feel them trying to burn it off even now… But, we fear that the taint he will carry with him forever.” She allowed herself a small smirk… Not now, nor his children, nor his grandchildren, but someday, it was quite possible, that one of his line in the far future would become a powerful Occultist- and an evil one, at that. “Adriel arrived, as did Azrael- Belial left battling Azrael, and Adriel escaped with the toy. Though,” she reflected, “she was too weak to face me. Raphael came as well, but he has been burned quite badly and will not be playing with us for quite a while.” Which is well- the Final Battle will be soon. Drat that foolish child Belphegor- she had to disappear when she could have been of use, for once.

Azazel bit his lip slightly. The red mark his father had imprinted on his left eye was again burning like a hellish flame; every living being was wrapped in a sort of strange aura which revealed to him things his demonic vision yet wouldn’t tell him. Azazel narrowed his eyes and clasped his hands on the sheets. The fire burned him fiercely but despite Fire was one of his own Elements, this fire didn’t belong to him but to the Morning Star; it burned his flesh without consuming it ever since Lucifer marked his face. Sometimes he would feel it; but other times…

Azazel’s blazing bronze eyes were filled with hatred and anger, despite his beautiful face remained serene; his eyes followed every movement of everyone in the room like if he were going to attack them any minute. Contradictory as he was, he saw Moloch did well by taking care of him but on the other hand he felt she was ‘controlling’ the situation over him by taking decisions on what he’d do without asking him first. If he would’ve followed his brattish mood he would have thrown the tray away, but the cold side of his mind held him back. He looked at Moloch. Despite he was weak now in comparison to his normal state, his power was still out of some hellish nightmare… but he wouldn’t get any advantage from rejecting her help harshly. Moloch’s pride relied greatly on her healing abilities – Azazel knew this well. To use the present situation to give her pride some praise, the best course of action was to accept her help as healer by following her suggestions. The hellish light in Azazel’s eyes turned into a shimmer of melted stone in the depths of a cave.

Azazel tried the broth and took a sip of wine. The liquor flowed into his body like a wave of warmth. The broth was good and the wine, honeyed. Azazel took a piece of his bread into his soup like a small child would, then ate it; it was kind of evident he liked it but he did not smile.

He listened carefully at her words, skimming the information and classifying it. “Is Michael alive?”, he coolly asked.
Michael. The angel he hated the most – Azazel would gladly give up an eye to kill the leader of the Angelic Host. Belial had taken him away from Michael and the angels; on one hand his former teacher had done well; but on the other hand… By the way! It could be a product of the delirium state he had fallen into when he got wounded, but he had seen the strangest vision: Belial and an angel that was just like him.

“They will all pay”, he muttered, eating some more bread with his broth, adding butter to the bread. “I’m guessing this toy of yours is a promissory trifle”, he said in a low voice that vibrated across the room. “I sense his trace. He was in that accursed Inn – Johnathon Morris. It would please me to see you take him under your special care, Moloch.” His voice seeped malevolence and a kind of dark, twisted mirth.

Disgraced…? I won’t be”, he said with a chilling, blood-curdling softness to his malignant voice. “The Battle will end with our victory.”
Belial and Azrael were a curious pair. The fiercest enemies, yet they were somehow alike. Azazel didn’t know exactly why, but it seemed appropriate to name them as opposed forces – the right killer to each other. Azazel sipped some wine.
“My sister probably ran away”, he unexpectedly said like if he were offering a gentle explanation, then continued eating.

“Michael survived, I’m sure. I would know if he didn’t.” Despite the fact that she was Fallen, Moloch still had the powers of an angel- something she denied vehemently. As all of the original Fallen did, with the possible exception of Lilith. Moloch would have felt the pain of the Archangel’s passing- and reveled. “No, he is alive.” She knew the news would not please Azazel; but she also knew that it would be quite simple for him to find out. It would gain her nothing to lie, anyway. And she was not certain about… No.

He enjoyed the food and wine, obviously, though his contradictory nature would not allow him to reveal it. Such a twisted child he was… His mother’s son, quite obviously. The Morning Star had not survived long enough to rear his own offspring- though Azazel did resemble him in many ways. Especially in power. Moloch extended her healing ability back into his body, now that she had rested from the small battle in her gardens. It had cost her little energy, as she had been able to draw on latent power instead of using her own.

At the mention of Morris, Moloch’s general good mood curdled. “It would please us as well, Young One. It would please us greatly to have our hands on him- and we would not hesitate to move swiftly and harshly, this time. It will be our victory, indeed. And the Host will wish they had never trifled with the wishes of the Fallen.”

Moloch almost blanched. She pulled her innermost, almost traitorous thoughts in closer, where he could not read them so easily, especially without alerting her. How rude, to trifle in another Fallen’s mind! It would be different if she were the enemy. But she was not. And hopefully… it would remind him that she wasn’t, subtly.

A hellish spark danced in Azazel’s eyes in delight as he sensed he had startled Moloch. He did not reveal he had perceived her retrieval, but inside the demon Warlord was pleased at his own mischief. After all, Azazel was still a young one – like any brattish child to his elders, he had learned from the Archdemons to what extent he could torture them without getting too far as to get them rebellious – and he enjoyed a good joke from time to time. His ‘jokes’ however were always private and of a disturbing nature.

Azazel noticed with some disappointment his broth was gone. He sipped his wine, which also was good and found himself in a better mood.
“So he lives”, he murmured. He couldn’t say he was surprised, for somehow he knew Michael lived – perhaps his hatred for the archangel had set a subtle link that allowed him to keep an eye on the enemy without even think about him. “I’ll crush him next time.” Azazel looked curiously at Moloch over his goblet, hellish fire dancing in the depths of his eyes.
“Tell me Moloch. What would please you to win for yourself in the Battles?”
It was his equivalent of ‘I’ve had my meal, now tell me a story’.

Moloch smiled ever so slightly. “What will we claim when we win the War? When we finally win the long War…”

Moloch had always had an incredible knack for healing, despite the fact that her strongest and only element was Fire. She absorbed all of the knowledge of the body and mind that she could- healing humans, body and soul, was her purpose, and her only ambition was to have the ability to perform that duty as well as she might. She was one of the fastest, deftest, and most driven of any students in the Host- healing was her love and her obsession.

But it seemed that fate would conspire against her. For whenever she used her ability to heal physical wounds, her patient would feel a corresponding amount of pain- sometimes great, sometimes a pinprick. She could block it mentally, but it seemed to weaken the effect of the healing she laid- not to mention that it was difficult holding two intricate spells together at once, one that could damage a body and another that could destroy a mind. The other angels found this to be amusing- particularly Uriel, who found it to be a fascinating joke. Uriel, her only rival in healing- who had everything she could ever want fall into her hand, even the attention of an Archangel- the Messenger.

Moloch never gave in- she would bend, but never break. She worked harder, and as she researched, she discovered something fascinating- the release of pain, not only the physical sensation, but the mental as well, created great power that she could not only absorb but use and control to heal more than ever before. Experimenting further, she found that other emotions- like love and pleasure- could also release energy, though usually not quite as much as pain. With her findings, she healed more than any thought could be done before. She was adored, adulated, cheered by other angels and almost worshipped by humans- until the angels found out how she worked these miracles. They shunned her, treating her as if she had done something unspeakable- but all she had done was worked more and harder than anyone else to find an efficient method of treatment- bringing life from the brink of death! Even things Uriel couldn’t claim to do. No one complained about the little extra she took- they were happy to be sound once more.

And that was when she discovered others in discontent- when Lucifer, The Morning Star, approached her and asked if she would join in his faction against the Host. And she did so, for as she used the energy of pain- her innocent envy of Uriel had grown into black hatred, for the oh-so-righteous Uriel was only jealous of what Moloch had accomplished, and had no idea of the work she had thrown away, the waste she was committing. When they Fell, Moloch was worshipped and revered by humanity- not only because of her healing, but because of the pain she brought that they so adored. Humans always craved pain- and she discovered a new source of energy. Lust and hatred. And Moloch’s power grew in leaps and bounds- making her among the first ranks of the Fallen.

And then the Sealing, when the angels had no idea of the mistake they had made in sealing them in ‘Hell’. Moloch escaped, using a small loophole she had discovered. After all, in the abyss they had been sealed into, she had little else to do. So she escaped, waiting for the time that Uriel would appear once more and consolidating her power on the earth.

“And then… It is so simple, Young One. We only want one thing- revenge. There are worse things than death in which she can contemplate her sins against us.”

Azazel took his wine in smaller sips as to make it last longer as Moloch showed him a kaleidoscope of the past, long before he was born. Images and memories flowed in her mind, allowing him to follow and look through her eyes back into her long gone past. Azazel watched carefully and with fruition, grasping as much information as he could. Not even his teacher the Necromancer had shown him private memories like these; he had relied on spells to show him the past. Moloch’s insight was different – the memories were filled with feelings, with a personal perception and a sense of truth he enjoyed deeply.

Azazel’s eyes widened and blazed as he looked into her and saw images of Heaven and the angels that are his enemies and the angels that now are some of his demons. The knowledge he acquired he carefully kept inside his own mind to increase his view and understanding… for future use.

Azazel’s eyes narrowed again as he leaned against the piled up pillows. He himself was son of angels; of powerful Fallen. He however was not an angel but a purebred demon. Where laid the limit, the boundary between a demon and an angel in the Fallen? That was an interesting consideration…

“Revenge”, he said. “A highest object of ambition. You will have your revenge – so will I.” His malevolent voice softly seeped poison in every word. “All angels will be destroyed – some swiftly, others deserve special treatment.” He smiled in sarcasm. “I am sure you’ve planned long… on how to entertain your guest when she falls into your power.” Azazel slid his fingers through his black hair and suddenly felt the touch of his wedding ring again. Azazel distractedly turned the gold ring around his finger.
“The angels will return what is mine to me”, he murmured. “I do not wish to stay in bed.”

Moloch studied Azazel with a piercing gaze. “We are not the ones who choose who lives and dies… We are but pawns in a game of judgment.” She turned to live, and paused.
“All we can do is but hope and struggle to tip the futile balance- once again, the sword will fall against the dragon’s chest, and the board will become even on the scale.” She left the room. Lilith would arrive soon.

Azazel’s eyes opened wide in indignation. I choose who lives and who dies!, he thought with arrogance as his eyes narrowed to blazing slits of fire. “I must disagree about that”, he hissed. However, Moloch’s last phrase was puzzling.
Azazel was perplexed. Dragon? What dragon is that? I suppose she doesn’t mean it’s me… Azazel turned the ring around his finger. A servant retrieved the tray and portable desk. At the Demon’s order, the servants left him alone.

“All I’d have to do is fly outside in any case”, he muttered. Azazel closed his eyes and scanned his body. He was not fully healed – he still needed some rest, despite the frustration and anger this discovery caused to him.
“Dragon…” He touched his eye mark; it was burning again. Azazel bent over pressing his hand over his left eye.

The blood had been wonderful. A young man, an aristocrat, at that. All too easy, feeding these days was… all too easy. But still, he was satisfied. Nicholai could still taste the faint traces of wine in the noble’s blood. Superb. The locket hung from his neck, filled to the brim with blood, swaying softly in late night wind. He would spend the night at his employer’s home. The sun was to rise in a matter of short hours. Crossing the broken bottle-alleyways of London provided a sort of thrill, a sense of familiarity his detestable ancient home had provided. Before royal bedrooms and champagne, Nicholai drank in the meager pleasures of dirty rainwater, ragged clothes and trash barrel dinners. Poverty had been a terrible memory in his past, and London was simply swimming with it.
After a time of half an hour or so, Anastasia’s grand home came into view. There were most definitely advantages of having a photographic memory. He wouldn’t have found the house again otherwise. He strolled to the front door, and tapped leisurely, once, twice, waiting for the lovely evil to answer his call.

The door swung open on it’s own accord, revealing the woman standing on the steps. Now dawned in the red silk dress the vampire had presented to her earlier. Going down the last few steps, she turned to model the dress, lightly gliding her hands down the soft silk. “Are you pleased with your choice? Crimson has always been a delightful color…” Motioning her hand, she beckoned him to come in. The door slamming shut behind him as he stepped through the threshold. “I trust you did what I asked. I would so hate to be disappointed on only our second meeting.”

The vampire smiled. Indeed, the dress was gorgeous on her. Folds of red silk clung to her figure, beautifully, excitingly, but yet, somehow, still tastefully. Her hair fell in moonlight strands about her shoulders; it contrasted dramatically with the dark dress. She was a sight to see, indeed.
“Very pleased, Madame. It brings out your eyes.” He flashed a slow, charming smile.
Nicholai tilted his head, brushing bangs out of his crimson eyes- they matched her dress perfectly.

“You underestimate me… What kind of knight would I be to leave a fair maiden’s request ungranted? I would give you my sword myself to slay me.” Slowly, deliberately, Nicholai slid pale fingers about the chain that hung from his neck, removing the necklace and holding it, floating, above his palm. “I trust you recognize this..?”
He smirked, anticipating her expression in the moment she would open the little locket.

She snatched the locket from his hands quickly, much like a half starved child. Moving away from him to the window. Turning the locket gently in her hands, she admired the craft and designs that adorned it. It was the woman’s… something her sad little human family gave to her long ago. Dark red stained the gold on the inside, as she opened it. The sweet familiar smell of the woman’s blood wafted past her nose.

Giddy laughter rang deep from Anastasia’s chest as she clutched the gold piece, turning back to the vampire. “You did well. I trust she suffered much. All the years she escaped me…” Her crimson lips turned into a delighted sneer at the thought of all her carefully laid plans to kill her dear son’s pathetic bride were shattered time and time again by the woman’s impeccable luck. Only having shed her blood herself would have made this moment the more sweet.

However… though Anastasia’s victory was sweet, the sinister mind of Lilith pulsed with suspicions. The human woman was surrounded by many a foe. Angelic guardians surrounded her like grotesque flies to a vat of honey. The thought reminded her of Beelzebub and his ill habits. The lithe body of Anastasia moved across the floor, tucking the little trinket in to the folds of her gown. Lilith was no fool. A toy brought by her puppy would not satisfy her taste for blood. A smile splayed across her crimson painted lips. “You shall be rewarded, darling. Such a service you have done for me.”

“But of course, belle.”
Nicholai smiled, pleased with himself. “I thought you would prefer it that way.” He lifted a pale finger to his lips, brushing them in thought with the tips. “Now. I kept my end of the bargain, my dear… Shouldn’t you? I would love to see the town.”

Anastasia gave a slight coy tilt of her head, feigning forgetfulness. “Did I? My, my. For shame on me. Yes, we shall paint the town red…” she gave a slight sinister smile, “In a matter of speaking. …But first…” Reaching out her arms to him, she grasped the collar of his coat, pulling him in close to her. She pressed her body against his, tilting her head back with a subtle come hither look to her eyes. Nicholai raised an amused eyebrow as he leaned down, pressing a kiss against her soft supple lips. Lilith pressed her power outwards, using carefully weaved wards to sift through the vampire underlings mind, searching for his memories. Distasteful blood and gore she found until she found where he had met the human pest that plague her plans.

No! Anastasia, and her mental parasite both hissed in unison she shoved the vampire away. The whore was not dead! Did the little vampire think he could play games with her? It was no matter. “Foolish little beast. It was I and my legions that spawned creatures like you! How dare you betray me!” With a frightening gleam to her eyes, Anastasia raised an arm. Flames erupted around Nicholai’s feet. He motioned to make a pained cry, but the red hot flames engulfed him, burning his shell to naught but ashes.

Turning away from the worthless creature, Anastasia gave a heavy scowl. The woman was not dead, but that did not mean should could not make her precious believe it to be true. The locket would be proof enough, and he would give up his foolish search and focus on his legions. The Angelic Host would be destroyed.

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