Episode Thirty-Three, Taken, Scene 1

There were demons everywhere. Whoever had opened this gate had been powerful and sloppy. Or, of course, this had been their intent.


Some black witches were crazy enough to try and start an infernal invasion. No, I needed a better name than that.
Warlock. Right. That was the right term for people like that, a term which didn’t insult Clara.


My sword was having fun, though. To be honest, so was I, and I was secure in the knowledge that anyone who remembered this night would remember it only as a nightmare.


Besides, it was good practice. Individually, none of the demons were anywhere close to being as good as me. As a group? I was glad I had Sarael to partner with, and the angel was good.


Probably better than me, but then, who knew how old he was. Probably older than me.


“You’re enjoying this,” he accused.


“Guilty as charged. Remember what I am.”


“Yeah.” He cut the head off another demon. “Of course, I can’t say this isn’t close…”


“…to what you were made for?” I responded as I thrust towards a demon’s heart. It burst into flames.


“No, not at all, but to what we’ve become.”
There was something sad about that, and I thought I’d work it out. Later. When I wasn’t fighting a demon horde. Right now, that was about all the banter we had time for.


Another demon went down, but a third jumped me from behind, dragging its claws through my shoulder.


I spun to deal with it, but that hurt, and it hurt with a sting that suggested it wouldn’t heal as well as normal. A flesh wound, though.


A badge of honor. And the horde was thinning out. Thinning.


And then gone.


“I think we got them all.”


“We got all the stupid ones. We’ll be cleaning out imps and the like for weeks.” He looked at me. “May I?”




He reached for my injured shoulder. I let him, even if I wasn’t sure angel healing magic would work on me. It did, at least to a point. The wound was still there, but the sting vanished.


“What was that?”


“That kind of demon is venomous. Wouldn’t have done you permanent harm, but…”


“Thank you.”


Now I could ask him what he meant, but it still felt like the wrong moment. Not what he was made for but what he had become.


Thruor, and some of the things she had said about choices and our nature. The angel was not so different from me.


Neither, of course, was the demon.


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