I woke. It had been what, a day? Two? I wasn’t sure.
I sat up, looking around for a sense of what time or day it was. There was none, there being no ‘sun’ in hell and no clock in this room. So I got up. Went to the bathroom, then began lurking.
There was no proper other word for it, but the fact was that I didn’t mean to do it. I just didn’t want to be seen and tried to make no noise.
I somehow crossed no servants. Unlike homes in the heavenly realms, homes in the underworld were scanty on their servants. Less was best, unlike ‘up there’ where there were servants for everything.
Then there was that door with light streaming from around it, lighting up the corridor. It was like a giant sign saying ‘hey, here!’. You know the kind.
Now I crept closer, finally realizing that I was, indeed, snooping. Lurking. Being a bad guest. But-but-but – I heard voices. Curiosity climbing in me I crept to the door.
Standing a foot away from the thing, a hand hovering next to its luxurious panelings, I could clearly hear everything happening within.
“They’re coming for us!” a voice was whining. Bella? No one else sounded that petulant and cry-baby when they didn’t have their way.
A deep hum. Lucifer. More voices rose, clamoring for attention. I caught snippets.
“They’re going to wipe us out!”
“They’ve done this before!”
“We need to unify our battlefront!”
Everything abruptly fell silent. Lucifer must have raised a hand, or something. “How do you suppose we do that?” he asked snarkily. “Unite our battlefront?”
A voice, steady, said “We need to strike a truce with the heavenly realm. Maybe even with the Boddhisattvas. We need to unite.”
“And how, do you suggest we staunch that rebellion? They haven’t exactly taken a shine to us lately.”
There was a long pause. Another voice poked up. “A truce. We must speak with them plainly of the gravity of the situation.”
Footsteps were approaching. A servant? Cursing under my breath I crushed myself up against the wall, hoping they wouldn’t notice me.
They didn’t. They strolled by, eyes focused straight before themselves and loosely humming. My heart pounded in my chest. I was seriously up to no good. Chaos, you’re about to get into serious trouble.
But the door… I could still hear everything…all I had to do was cock my head and I could still hear them talking.
They were arguing now, two other voices raising steadily. They wanted to force the heavenly realm to submit, but were wondering how to go about it.
Okay, I thought. Chaos, you need to step away from this. It’s not your problem.
So, wrenching myself away from the door, I turned and – oh shit.
Lucifer was standing right there. Right behind me.
I gaped. Never trust a god to not just apparate behind you.
He was dressed all in silky black with (again) a large slice of his shoulder and chest showing. But I hardly noticed his outrageous outfit and heels, this time just staring at his face. He was smirking, but not in a ‘I’m happy’ kind of way. This was a ‘caught you, little fucker’ kind of way.
He stooped over me. I gulped. With the tips of his fingers, he touched my shoulder, then pointed the other hand down the hallway to where I’d come from. “That way,” he hissed softly.
I darted, bolted, whatever. I ran fast out of there. I was in no shape for a fight and certainly didn’t want one.
Once in my room, I practically barricaded myself in it. Of course I didn’t, but I wanted to just shove all the furniture up against the door and curl in a little ball. What a loser I was. Lame, lost, helpless.
I paced the room until I was exhausted. Whatever that meeting was, it was taking forever. Or, was Lucifer not coming to see me? For some reason I thought he’d come to chew me out. Or was he just ignoring me?
I paced some more, eventually flopping down onto the bed. There, I tossed and turned as sleep began slowly closing over me.
It felt like I had just closed my eyes when a servant shook me awake. I yelped, throwing them off and jumping up.
“Oh good, it’s awake,” Lucifer sneered from behind the fallen angel between us. Angel who slipped away now that their work was done. Which, in case you’re really bad at math, left me alone with Lucifer.
I gulped, looking up at the god. He was wearing something different – did that mean it was a new day? Or had he just changed on a whim after the meeting was done? Either way, his eyes were burning into me.
“I’m sorry,” I mumbled. I crossed my arms across my chest defensively. “I uh- I was wandering and -”
Lucifer crossed his arms as well and tilted his head to the side, as if he was indulging me.
Alright, I was nervous. “I didn’t mean to,” I fibbed. “And I didn’t hear much.”
“M-hmm?” Lucifer tilted his head even more, his silver hair draping around him. “Or are you spying?”
“Spying?” I startled. “For who?”
Lucifer’s lips curled into a nasty smirk and he stooped over me. I stepped back, but my legs bumped into the bed. Trapped.
“You know,” his breath was sweet as it misted over me. “The invaders. How appropriate for you to just disappear, perhaps see them, and return here to eavesdrop. Care to explain how you magically lost your transporter? No?”
I guppied. No sound would come out of me. I felt both simultaneously outraged, insulted, and terrified. In a blink, I decided to be angry. That would work, right?
“I’m not spying!” I fairly shouted, hands curling into fists. “I-”
Lucifer raised an eyebrow. I silenced. Dropping my voice to a hiss I seethed. “I don’t know where the black box went. But I haven’t done anything-”
“Yes, nothing, really,” said Lucifer dryly. “You’ve just been sleeping.”
Another look. I fell silent again. My head drooped as I remembered these past few days – and the reason I was like this. My friends…
“What is it?” Lucifer asked sharply. A long finger lifted my chin. I swatted it away without thinking, twisting away.
“It’s none of your business!” I snapped, glaring up at him.
“Oh?” was all he said, so coldly. I felt myself flush with anger, at him and at myself. He was my host after all. He’d taken me in. Did he deserve an explanation?
“My friends are dead,” I snapped, glaring fiercely into those uncaring eyes. “Someone killed them while I was -” my hands shot out and shoved his shoulders. “Stuck! Here!”
Black tendrils caught my wrists and I wrestled against them. I managed to land another shove before I was yanked back.
“It’s your fault!” I screamed, twisting. My wrists were yanked behind my back and I kicked out, narrowly missing Lucifer’s knee. “You stuck me here! You had me kill Bella – you’re the problem! Not me! It’s all your fault!”
The black tendrils were coiling over me but I surged my magic, ripping free and launching myself at Lucifer.
It was like a child fighting an adult, except I was the child in this case. With practiced ease Lucifer caught my wrist, spun me around, and tossed me face first onto the bed. Smack.
Furious, I was back on my feet and attackign again before I could even think. Think something like: hey, it’s not a good idea to get into a fist fight with your host? Or one of the most powerful angels, like, ever?
I found myself slammed face-first into a wall. Black twisting vines, tendrils, things, wrapped around me securely and crushed me against it.
Gritting my teeth, I tried to wrestle free. It wasn’t working this time.
Slow footsteps walked over to me. I squeezed my eyes shut, expecting a ‘I’ve given you so much’ speech.
I was yanked around and dragged forward, straight up into Lucifer’s bubble. There was a frown on his face and his annoyingly nice perfume wafted over me.
“I’m sorry,” he whispered. His palms cupped my face and he stooped over me. So close. My breath caught as he searched my eyes. He was… so close.
My breath caught as his eyes dropped down to my lips. Then they went back up to my eyes. A smirk curled on his face. He was playing with me.
I wanted to scream and kick him again, but swallowed that down.
“I’m sorry your friends are dead,” he said slowly. “But I didn’t kill them. I didn’t mean for that to happen either.”
The tendrils slowly unwound from around me. I found my footing again, but he was still holding my face in his hands. “I am also sorry Bella dropped you like a hot coal,” he said, sounding sincere but his eyes twinkled merrily.
I jerked my head free. “You don’t care,” I snapped, feeling strangely hurt.
“Hmm,” he hummed darkly before turning and stalking away. His voice floated over his shoulder towards me. “Mind your own business, kitten. You can stay here as long as you want if you do that.”
The door to my bedroom shut behind him on its own.
I scowled. Like hell I was going to do that.