For those who haven’t been following this blog, let me introduce it a little. I am currently blogging my 21st novel that has the working title Daemon. The novel is about Aksinya, a sorceress, who, to save her family from the Bolsheviks, called and contracted the demon, Asmodeus. Her family was murdered anyway, and she fled with the demon from Russia to Austria.
Aksinya is locked in a cold dark cell under the residence of the Cardinal of Wien. Her jailer is an old woman who left her water and gruel as her supper. Aksinya tries to sleep...
A heavy sound woke her. She raised her head. She didn’t dare speak. Then she heard it again. It sounded like the slap of a bare foot against stone. She caught a whiff of sulfur in the air. In the darkness, a large dark figure stood outside her door.
Aksinya shivered and trembled at the same time.
Asmodeus voice thick with mocking amusement tumbled out of the darkness. Aksinya was so used to seeing his lips curl up over his fangs, she wasn’t certain if she could see them or she just imagined them in the darkness. The demon chuckled, “Dear alleged Countess what a terrible predicament you find yourself in.”
Aksinya stared at him.
“Didn’t I warn you not to confess? Didn’t I tell you to not seek out the Church.” He spat the word. “You sought to resist me. That was a new experience for me. None of my previous masters ever tried to fight against me before. But that doesn’t matter. There is no hope for you now.”
“There was never any hope for me from the beginning, was there, demon?”
“Ah, the little girl finally speaks. Yes, you are right. There never was any hope for you.”
“Why are you here now demon. Have you come to give me more instructions or did you just come to torment me.”
He laughed, “I have no more instructions to give you, alleged Countess. I’m here to steal all hope away from you.”
Aksinya pressed her lips tightly shut.
“You will never be rid of me, but now, I can torment you as I desire.”“You lie. You may only torment the guilty, and I am confessed and forgiven.”
We all seek resolutions. This is one such time. It is a rich time in a novel when we can begin to see what has transpired outside the stag we see. Asmodeus visits the prisoner, Aksinya. How ironic is this--to be visited by a demon in the house of the Cardinal. Did you note that the demon could not enter a church or an Ecclesia, but he freely enters the house of a Cardinal--oh well.
Perhaps Akisinya's reaction is too much. I wanted you to note that she is cold--in this scene, I don't want you to forget, but I want you to know that she is filled with fear. She should be. I show you how dark it is, still Aksinya imagines the expressions of the demon--they are horrible. You can imagine them with her.
His first address to her: “Dear alleged Countess what a terrible predicament you find yourself in.” With these words, you know he takes credit for leaving the impression she is not really a countess and with her entire predicament. He is trying to be amusing.
First he attacks her confession. Isn't that the first thing the newly confessed think. When everything doesn't work out, they ask, why did I confess? Then the Church itself. It hasn't helped Aksinya? Has it? That is the impression the demon tries to leave.
Second, he reminds her, she resisted him. There is no hope for her because she resisted the evil of Asmodeus and she sought confession and the church. But listen to Aksinya's words. She does understand now. It wasn't her resistance, it wasn't her confession, it wasn't the Church--there was no hope from the beginning. We knew this. If we didn't, we guessed it. There was no hope while Aksinya wallowed in sorcery, luxuria, with a demon in contract with her. The only problem is she still has a contract with Asmodeus.
Note how the demon addresses her, this will be important in the future--little girl. And Aksinya's observation, "Have you come to give me more instructions or did you just come to torment me.” Of course, the demon came to torment her--that is his purpose. He told her that before. Then the part that implies her contract: “You will never be rid of me, but now, I can torment you as I desire.”
Aksinya hopes this is not true. She grasps at what she knows is truth. The fact that she is confessed and forgiven, is it enough? We know it is likely not. Tomorrow, more from the demon.