The Messengers
by Kaae

Chapter Four: Devil's Omen

" Let us walk in the white snow
In a soundless space;
Without footsteps quiet and slow,
At a tranquil pace,
Under veils of white lace. " - Elinor Wylie, Velvet Shoes

This place is wonderful! This is the thought that runs through my mind, feeling free at the top of the mountain near Altena, my kingdom... my home. My mother was so surprised to see me, she burst into tears and her cold hands touched my face, assuring herself that I was real. She thinks I have to stay... But I know I can't. Not without my people...

He could find me easily if I don't leave with them. Lila, Lily and James. But, when I walk away with those three, I am protected by something so good and so full of love that he can't break the barrier. Love is something he will never understand. Even if Satan did, he wouldn't be able to feel it. He just doesn't have the heart.

You'd better come back here, NOW, Serenity! I know where you are... Don't make me come up there... Satan's thoughts now echo in my mind, clearly stating his mood: angry, heartless, as always. I don't move, but rather relax more. You don't think I'm serious? Warning Altena probably, of my invasion... What a traitorous thing to do. And of all people...

" Oh shut up, I've done worse, " I mumble, grinning. The wind whips my hair playfully, the damp cold making my cheeks rosy. For once, I feel alive again, free... It's good to be home.

Even if only for a short while.

" SERENITY! I SAID GET OVER HERE NOW! " Satan loses his temper the next day, when I return to the Underworld. I yawn, used to this sort of behavior. Instead of walking quickly, I take my time and ignore him. I don't really care anymore.

" Like I said yesterday, shut up! " Standing next to him, I feel an emotion radiating off of him... more so than usual. Anger, hate, misery... all the deep, dark things of this world. Satan narrows his eyes and hits me hard, and the blow throws me to the floor. I said before, I'm used to it, so it doesn't really hurt, but it stings alittle. But there'll be a bruise... there always is.

Instead of cowering or hitting him back, I brush the hair out of my eyes and get to my feet. He looks surprised. " I don't need to listen to you, and Fanha never will either. She'll NEVER be like you, so don't even get any ideas! Fanha is a good, honest child... I'm not going to let you ruin her life! " I pick Fanha up and walk away, Sheex looking at me sadly. How I'm going to miss him...

Sheex has been everything to me these past few years -- a best friend, a brother, an enemy, and above all, my only true friend... He's given me comfort, love, help... all the things I never would have expected out of him. But has indeed proved me wrong, and for that, I will always love him, in all the ways one can imagine.

Later, I end up sitting in Satan's room, listening to him lecture me once more. What a jerk. Head in my hands, a headache sweeping through my mind, I don't even bother to argue. I know all it'll get me is another bruise or worse... I shudder to think what that'd be like again. The thought is enough to make any mortal's spine tingle with coldness... or any being, for that matter.

" Do you understand me? " These are the last word's I hear him say, and before that, I didn't even bother to listen.

" Understand what? " I scoff.

His eyes narrow dangerously again. " You didn't hear one word I said, did you?! You never were much, I don't even know why I bother with you..." Satan raises his hand to me again. " Worthless bitch! " he growls. And for the second time this afternoon, goes to hit me... but the door bursts open, Fanha standing in the frame.

" Daddy, leave Mommy alone! " Her voice is shaking, trembling -- She is standing up for me, bravely, yes, but she's terrified of her father. That's a pain I know all too well.

The smile he now has is dangerous, evil, and full of too sharp teeth... like a cat's. I hate to think what he would do if he was mortal... Probably corrupt the world. But, I think sadly, he is already planning to do this.

" Well, Fanha, would you like to join your mother now? " He merely waves his hand, and with a whoosh, Fanha's pinned against the wall like a helpless doll. I jump to my feet.

" Leave her out of this! This is between you and me! " I hug her close and try to stop her shakes, but they won't quit. She truly fears him as much as I used to... And that was my biggest mistake, the one I hoped Fanha wouldn't make. I want her to be like me... but not follow the same course.

" Good. If it's between us, then... Fanha, run along. I need to speak with your mother. " I get his meaning. I scoff again and follow her out of the room, assuring Fanha that we won't be staying here much longer. Thank Mana for that...

Of course, Satan follows us, making sure he has the last word. Like always. " Serenity, I warn you now, if you try anything at all... you'll lose your life and Fanha's. " These words stop me dead in my tracks, but Fanha didn't hear it and keeps walking.

" You wouldn't dare. "

" Oh I wouldn't? Fanha's life means nothing more than your own, but you do know the reason you're here, correct? "

" Educate me, hothead, " I say sarcastically.

" You're here to keep your world safe... You'd rather sacrifice your own life to save that of your people, and that's something I've admired... And... "

I scoff yet again. " You mean something you wish you could do. Selfish. "

He shrugs, considering my words. " You're also here to keep war at hand, yet off to the side and not to interfere until I need it to do so. I will rule all three worlds, with you by my side. This is how it's going to stay, whether you like it or not. "

" Well that's wrong. I wouldn't stand by you... Never. "

Satan growls, the tones familar. " Watch your mouth! " I snap. " Fanha might hear you! "

" You'll do what I say or I'll make your life more miserable than it already is! This is my world, my command. And this is MY Omen. You don't do what I tell you, your kingdom, your world, everything -- will shatter. And so will your life. "

He turns and walks away, angry with me, again. I don't care about that, I care about the words he spoke. Everything...?

So this is it. War. And the Omen... The Devil's Omen.

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