Okay--the novel, Daemon (working title). I'm going to give you a piece. I'll keep feeding you pieces to make my points. I just thought you might like to see the contract and begin to understand the personalities of the demon and Aksinya. The trick here is to use conversation as the construct to communicate most everything within the storyline. This is part of the first scene. The input was the invocation. This is the contract. The output is leaving the cellar of the guesthouse to save Aksinya's family. Recognize this is the first draft. I need to go over this more than once to refine it, but I think the strength of the writing is still obvious and the point I'm trying to make about developing personalities is evident:
"The creature let out a hiss.
Aksinya licked her lips. She unconsciously spoke Russian, “Hello, demon. Name yourself.”
The demon slitted his eyes. His voice was a hiss only slightly slurred by its fangs, “Russian. I can answer in this tongue. Where is your master little girl?”
“Ha, demon. I am your master.”
“My master? We shall see. Who called me?”
“I did. I demand you name yourself.”
“Little girl, I am Asmodeus. Do you know me?”
“I do know you, and I demand you obey me.”
“Who really called me?”
“I called you.”
“If you lie, you know what I can do to you.”
Aksinya stuck out her chin, “I do not lie, demon.” She began the next part of the reciting in Latin again.
As she spoke, the demon’s eyes widened, “You did call me.” He began to laugh.
Aksinya stopped speaking, “Why are you laughing.”
Asmodeus scratched his nose and let out a little snort, “In all my many years, I have never been called by a girl or a woman. Only men. How old are you anyway. You are nearly breastless. Are you even past the age of accountability.”
“The age of accountability?”
“Yes, are you at least twelve with pubic hair?”
Aksinya blushed, “You, keep quiet. I called you—you have no right to insult me.”
“I have not insulted you, little girl. I only wish to know with whom I deal. If you can’t be held accountable for your sins, then I can’t have any dealing with you.”
“I am more than twelve, and I have…I have,” Aksinya was breathing hard.
“You have pubic hair. I could ask you to prove that, you know.”
“Shut up, demon. I don’t have to prove anything to you.”
“Ah, but you do, and you know it.”
“What I have to prove has nothing to do with, with, that. Listen to me demon, Asmodeus, I claim you as my servant. I called you, and you must now answer to me alone.”
“Very well, I know all that. What do you offer? Usually I get your soul out of the deal.”
Aksinya stammered, “I will not offer you my soul.”
“Why not? You won’t have any other use for it when you die. You’re certain to be in hell for what you did tonight alone.”
“That is not certain. I might have called a demon from the pit…”
“…And worked the blackest of magic.”
“Yes, that too.”
“Little girl, this is how you go to hell—didn’t your mother teach you?”
“My mother did teach me—stand back, demon, Asmodeus.”
“I was only getting closer to you.”
“There is no need until after we have made our contract.”
“Then what do you offer me, little girl? If it is not your soul, then it must be some other part of you. You know that part becomes mine forever.”
Aksinya picked up a dagger from the stone floor. She watched the demon the entire time.
Asmodeus’ eyes brightened. He smiled around his fangs. He licked his lips, “What will you offer me of yourself, little girl? Will it be your virtue perhaps? Or perhaps a body part?”
“You know as well as I do, demon, my virtue is not a part to give but rather a quality. Have you tricked others that way?”
The demon shrugged, “Perhaps I have taken their virtue, and they found out later that that was insufficient for a contract. It really is a bother to be at the beck and call of a puny human.”
“And without a contract…?”
“Without a contract, I take you to hell with me now.” The demon jumped to the edge of the pentagram. He circled it like a cat.
Aksinya turned with him and watched his bright black eyes.
Asmodeus stopped on the other side, “It was well made, little girl.”
“Of course it was well made. Do you think I would try this without being well prepared?”
“From humans, I don’t know what to expect. Now what will you give me? There are rules to this game.”
“This is no game. I know exactly what this is.”
“You know, little girl. I can see right down the front of your dress.”
“Shut up, you have to obey me, demon.”
“Not until there is a contract. Until then, I may do what ever I wish to you.”
“Only if you can touch me.”
“I have all the time in the world. I have been around since that guy laid the foundations of the world. That’s when he created me.”
“You mean God…”
“Don’t say that word. Plus why would a witch like you use His name so easily. You are damned to hell just as I am.”
“Perhaps I am damned to hell, but I know the truth. You were not at the beginning, and he did not create you at first. There is some question as to just who created you and when, so do not speak lies to me demon.”
Asmodeus snarled and moved the rest of the way around the circle, “I am a demon. I may lie as I desire. Now, stop wasting my time, little girl. Give me your part of the bargain and contract me. Either that or let me take you to hell. When the candles of your magic circle burn out, nothing on the earth will protect you from me.”
Aksinya lifted her dagger.
“What do I get? Your finger? Your ear? Perhaps your arm. Does it offend you that much, little girl?”
Aksinya grasped her long braided hair and cut it with the razor sharp dagger, “I shall give you my hair, demon, Asmodeus. This part of me shall be the pledge of our contract. You must please me, protect me, and obey me as my servant until the day of my death.” Aksinya held the log thick braid in front of her and stepped out of the circle toward the demon.
Asmodeus looked as though he wouldn’t take the braid. His legs twitched as though he tried to take a step back. Then slowly, slowly, his hands reached out, and he grasped the braid. Aksinya let it go. She saw her braided hair in the hands of the demon for a moment, then it was gone. The demon dropped to his knees.
“Where is your surety, demon, Asmodeus?”
The demon reached out his hands. In them was a locket of tarnished silver. Its thick chain was like a thin braid of hair. The locket was about two inches high and shaped like a heart. Aksinya bent her head and the demon slipped the chain over it. It settled around her neck and fell down the front of her dress. Aksinya could feel it burning against her chest, between her small breasts.
The demon gave a laugh, “There is my surety, Lady Aksinya Andreiovna Golitsyna. Are you sure you are not a child?”
So, the demon, Asmodeus and the woman, Aksinya are contracted. Tomorrow, I intend to show you more of the demon. I want you to see how he manipulates and "tempts" Aksinya. The focus of the plot is this temptation. If you didn't get it already, the main temptation of Asmodeus is...perhaps you should guess.