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. Asmodeus comes to visit Aksinya in the depths of the night...
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.”
Aksinya heard a slight change in the tone of Asmodeus’ voice, “I warned you not to confess. I still have power over the world, and the world will do my work for me well.” He stuck out his hand and pulled it back.
The dress Aksinya wore slipped off her body. At the door, the demon held it in his fist.
“There, alleged Countess, the night is cold. Your cell is colder. This dress shall keep until the morrow.” He threw it far down the corridor where Aksinya could never retrieve it. “I can still torment you, but I don’t need to torment you. That was never my plan. I sought to bring everyone around you down to your level. Already my plans have come to a wonderful harvest. It is a harvest you shall reap for me. Could you imagine that you would see the ruin of everything you hold dear? You don’t need to imagine it, because you will soon live it. Everyone you touched will be harmed. Little girl, you don’t have any idea the havoc you have wrought in this world—soon you will know all.”
Aksinya huddled naked and shivering in the corner of the bench and the wall.
“This is usually the time you threaten me, alleged Countess. Why so quiet?”
“Because speaking will do no good. It never did any good before. The only thing that matters anymore is that I am confessed and forgiven.”
“What about your friends?”
“For them…for them.”
“Hah, don’t say you are willing to die.”
Tears trickled down the sides of Aksinya’s cheeks, “I cannot say that. I am not willing to die for them. I wish I was able, but I am not.”
“That is your problem. You were willing to release a demon to protect your family, but you would not have died for any of them. Let me tell you a secret, alleged Countess. I killed your family. I killed them all. If you wondered at your injuries when you traveled with me from your cellar to your family’s estate, they came about because you helped me bring about the deaths of your own family. I delayed just long enough between heaven and earth so the Bolsheviks would have the time to do their dirty work. You were marked with the touch of hell in the place where time has no meaning. Already you have been to hell; therefore, you should embrace your new home with even greater fervor.”
Aksinya was breathless, “You let them murder my family? You were sworn to obey me.”“Never sworn to obey you. I swore to do evil in your name. You are such a fool, little girl. You tried to negotiate with a demon. My purpose is temptation and evil. I have no other purpose in heaven or earth.”
Asmodeus has come to torment Aksinya--he has shown this behaviour over and over. He has come to steal all hope from her. When Aksinya tells the demon he can't torment her because she is forgiven, the demon's tone changes slightly because he may not be able to use his power and physically torment her, but he can use his words and the power of the world to torment her. He takes her clothes and now she is naked in the cold. She was cold before, now she is colder. Do you remember how sensitive to the cold Aksinya is?
Asmodeus tells her, it was never his plan to torment her. His plan was to torment everyone around her. Perhaps he is lying, but that doesn't matter, the suffering of Aksinya's friends is a torment to her. The demon tells her, she will see the ruin of everything she holds dear. She doesn't understand the suffering she has wrought--soon she will know.
The demon knows her well--usually Aksinya returns the demon's attack at this point. But Aksinya has learned. It does no good--it never did any good. The truth is that: "The only thing that matters anymore is that I am confessed and forgiven.”
The demon isn't finished. He has more torment to bring her. It's about Aksinya's friends. Told you.
Aksinya isn't much different than most of us--she isn't willing to die for another. She isn't willing to die for her friends. The demon uses this against her. He has more to use against her. He begins his torment with the truth about Aksinya's family. Asmodeus allowed them to be killed. He could have protected them, but he didn't and had no intention of protecting them. Ultimately, calling the demon gave absolutely no benefit to Aksinya. If you imagined anything positive from it, this confession from Asmodeus completely destroys that idea.
Aksinya doesn't understand. She states: "You were sworn to obey me.” Asmodeus clears that up quickly: “Never sworn to obey you. I swore to do evil in your name. You are such a fool, little girl. You tried to negotiate with a demon. My purpose is temptation and evil. I have no other purpose in heaven or earth.” He told her that before--was she not listening? Tomorrow, more from the demon.