(c) Isabo Kelly
Aidan put her hands on her hips and stared at
the demon through eyes that were just brown enough most people
could pretend they weren't really red. The demon stared back
with its claws on the foggy black mass that passed for its hips.
Aidan pursed her lips. The demon scrunched its mouth up in a
passable imitation despite not having lips. Aidan clicked her
teeth. So did the demon.
This had to be the weirdest hunt she'd ever gone
"Do you know what you're doing?" the
ratty little man next to her asked. "What's happening?"
"Do you want to take over?"
"Then shut up."
The demon put its hands behind its back and smiled.
Aidan smiled too as she put her hands behind her back.
Hunts were never the same. A lot of different
things had to be taken into consideration. The type and age
of the demon called, the religious background used in the calling,
the beliefs of the demon, the beliefs of the one who called
the demon, the original deal, the forfeit, the price. Sometimes
even the weather and the phase of the moon had to be considered.
But really the paraphernalia used in a fight with a demon came
down to window dressing.
All a hunter really needed was will. A will stronger
than a demons.
The demon moved to the edge of the containment
circle. It waited.
Aidan looked right into its big red eyes as she
stepped to the edge of her side of the circle.
"Wait! What are you doing? He'll kill you."
The ratty man who's life she was saving pulled at her hand where
it still rested behind her back.
"Afraid if he kills me, you'll be next?"
"You know what he'll do to me," the
man whined. "He promised me all kinds of horrors if I didn't
fulfill our second bargain."
"They always do." She had little sympathy
for this particular case. The man-Fred-had bargained away his
soul for a pittance.
The demon started to move its hands forward, but
Aidan shook her head. "Ah, ah. That was three. The smile
A deep growl rose from what was roughly the center
of the oil black ooze that made up the demon's body. Aidan met
the growl passively. After a minute, the demon bobbed its head.
The fight continued.
Aidan took one step away from the edge of the
ring. The demon, after letting loose another growl, took one
step backward. Aidan dropped her hands to her sides. Her gaze
locked with the demon's as he followed suit. She raised one
eyebrow in an expression that would have been amusement on anyone
The demon's brows rose over the glowing pits of
Aidan smiled. "You lose. I only raised one."
Its brows snapped back down. A keening sound started
from the center of the circle. And with a howl of outrage, the
demon vanished, leaving behind the scent of sulfur.