As he waited for the call to connect, he knelt down and jabbed a stiffened finger into the soft mud. His finger easily pushed down to the knuckle, which most mud would not allow with such effortlessness, but this was not exactly wet dirt. It was something much more precious and rare. Those within the Black circle knew it as Lament. Corpse Sand was another moniker of the phenomena that had not been seen by humans in over two thousand years. Its growth was fertilized by blood, which gave it the reddish clay like texture and color it now had. In a few short weeks, the foundation would be fully transformed and ready for the first phase of Genesis.
"Where is my Motel Loki?"
"In a week, sire. I am testing the soil as we speak."
"Another one of your games?"
"Hardly. I have spoken to the good doctor and he has assured me that everything will go accordingly to plan."
"For your sake, Loki, I sure as hell hope so."
The call ended. Loki had never liked direction and listening to his master made sense only when he could be as mischievous as possible. In a weeks time, his playground would be among the living. Loki could barely contain his excitement.
Father Neight was accustom to darkness, spending much of his time with the Black inside the Quiet Room. An 8 x 8 coffin of a room cast inside total darkness, with only a chair to sit in and a small bucket that collected water from somewhere above that doubled as both a place to piss and shit and quench a heavy thirst brought on by severe heat exposure. The temperature of the room never fell below 89 degrees and the bucket was collected only periodically, when he had either fallen asleep or past out from the intense physical test that was his initiation and own personal hell. There was no food, he remembered, for the first week and after clinging onto the cusp of starvation by ingesting roaches and the occasional insect, food came only once every three days. It was the Black's pestilence, to walk among filth and emerge from the cesspool into society stronger, more determined, with a keen sense of survival where only death roam. But he had survived and spat in the face of all evil that touched his soul for that infinite summer so long ago. Now, as his eyes opened to a new darkness around him, one thing was certain, wherever he was he was not alone. He could feel the occasional hot breath at the back of his neck. He heard the dull growl that crawled up his spine and settled. But it was the smell that shook him the most, an old familiar scent of brimstone and seared flesh that propelled his youthful spirit back to the Quiet Room years before. He knew what he was up against and that somewhere around him was a demon and a very old and powerful one at that.
"I remember you." He said to the darkness.
"The Son has fallen into the Black, where demons and devils roam stand at each others backs. In His holy church Four shall seed, to rise against the Lord's chosen Breed. To poison the well of all His people, stripping and raping their children beneath his holy Steeple. When the call of the Black sends forth its Soldiers, who shall bring Hell upon Earth and watch its world Smolder," the slithering voice speared through Father Neight's skull, gripping at his conscious like nails against a blackboard, "Finish the lines to enter the Black Circle."
They were words said hourly and the only words spoken to him for that long sentence inside the Quiet Room. They branded his deep consciousness like a brand against the hide of sheep, which he could not forget no matter how long he had not said them.
"The Four shall stand by the side of their Dark congregation, bringing upon the Lamb's people eternal damnation."
"Indeed. Welcome back, Josef."
The world exploded in a deep orange hew, sucking up the darkness with its radiant sheen, thickening and pouring alongside him, stretching outwards running along the emptiness in front of him, bending into a corner and then another and another, until Josef found himself inside a great hall. From within the walls, hands pushed through the veil and stepped into reality in human shapes with a variety of animal heads; a deer; a frog; a bull; a snake; a wolf; a eagle and a beast of ancient decent that sat upon a throne at the end of the hall. All of the beast migrated towards the giant being sitting, with its thick scaly arms crossed at its chest, its head was that of a dinosaur, a tyrannosaurus with gaping jaws and rows upon rows of jagged knife-like teeth. A huge tail coiled around the throne down towards the floor and rattled at its thick hoofed feet. What kind of demons were these abominations? Josef felt the hand of a demon push at his back. As he took a step forward, the foundation rippled like the wind kissing the surface of calm water. His feet were no longer human, each step taken sent another vibe across the floor that met the base of the throne and exploded into a spring of color, much to the delight of the High Demon waiting. Josef then noticed his hands, cracked and peeling as though the flesh no longer mattered to the leathery hide beneath, his fingers fused together, pinkie to ring, middle to index and his thumbs fattened proportionately forming his new twin-fingered hands. Josef realized then that his true form, a demon like the rest, had decided to shed its human clothing and join the rest of the horde.
And now, on Hallows Eve, Father Day sat alone on his porch looking up to a blood red moon hanging overhead as little children, dressed as ghost and goblins, call out the words that send shivers of joy down the spine of Loki himself. "TRICK OR TREAT!" The poor misguided fools, he thinks to himself as he hands out a fist full of candies to the children. They had no idea what they say or what it means.
"I'm sorry my friend." He said as he poured himself another full glass of wine.
By nine o'clock that night, the children had diminished from his doorstep and the empty bottles of wine had taken effect. Father Day drifted off for a second, before hearing another "Trick or Treat!" but the words did not originate from the mouths of kids. They were low and vibrated against his chest. His eyes sprung open and he saw before him demons. Each one stood in the open night, a goat-headed fiend whose scent burned his nostrils and a second whose face was marred by a thousand years of penance in the deepest reaches of hell. He attempted to move, but his body lay frozen in his seat. Fear had a way of managing one's bodily functions and Father Day no longer controlled his, pissing himself and attempting to speak.
"You've been a bad man, father."
"Your double sends his most precious jewels as a thank you for your deceit."
Father Day winced and wretched at his lap, a bloody scrotum lay in a small pool of blood before him that he swiped off into the bushes along the porch as an involuntary action.
"Fiends!" He attempted to reach for his cross tucked inside his shirt, but felt the hot grip from one one of the demons at his throat. The air was immediately cut off from his lungs.
"Trick or Treat!" Said two voices from behind them.
There was a tense moment of pause among the demons and Father Day, who tried to speak but forced himself into silence to retain the few precious seconds of air he had remaining, before the goat-headed demon reached down past Father Day and took a plastic pumpkin filled with candies. The demon turned to the teens, each covered in fake blood and torn plastic skin that hung from their faces, and studied them. The teens, who excitedly complimented the level of detail to the demon's costume, eventually realized there may be more to this house than first thought as they strolled up the driveway. Before any had the chance to react, the demon reached into the pumpkin and pulled out a swath of chocolates, dropping huge handfuls into each of their pillow cases, and then snorted thick grey smoke from the end of its ringed snout. The teens turned on their heel and raced down the drive and away. This would be the most memorable Halloween of each of their young lives, because neither knew how close they both had actually been to being dead on this night rather than pretending to be. The demon turned its attention back to the priest who had started to lose the color to his own face and said: "The Archangel wishes to see you."
The porch caught flame and burst into a bright ball of orange glow that spread across the front of the house and engulf it too in hell fire that burned it to the ground before the first firetruck ever rolled up to the scene.
Finally, the Four were once again among each other and beset among the court of the dark prince sitting atop his throne. Father Day, now seen in his truest form a bat-like demon with torn wings and scars plaguing over his entire body. The Archangel, Marquis Sabnock, stood up from his throne and pointed to his treasonous demon with haste.
"You offend me, Pagan. Your exile was not to become one of them and turn your back on your horde. Lucifer will be most dissatisfied with your transgressions and, I hope, stern in your punishment."
"Josef has told me all that I need or want to know, Pagan. Your one role was to bring forth the Bishop and, once disposed, return to hell with the others."
"For what? Raise hell and then do what?"
"Is that not what He did?"
"I tire of this. Josef, take Pagan away. Perhaps there is something you can do for him that he once provided you. There is much to do before the first snowfall."
As the demons drug Pagan into the depths of hell, his words echoed the hall. His doubts fermented the air with uncertainty, but it was quickly dealt with by the Archangel.
Somewhere a fire raged out of control. It mirrored the same intensity that Saint Thomas church fell victim to and it brought the attention of the Holy Bridge to the forefront. A panel of men who only knew the other by their own rank gathered across the world wide web via video conference. Their location was known only by the one in charge of the entire operation and their faces were never shown, just images that represented each of their sects who listened intently to the heated conversation.
One said: "We can no longer wait for the Judas Priest to come around on his own."
One said: "What about the nun?"
One said: "She has confirmed that The Four are no longer among us. If this is true, and I have no reason to doubt her, then hell marches onward."
One said: "If we cannot bring the Judas Priest, everything we have done up to this point will have all been for nothing."
Another said: "Without my son, the Judas Priest will only be a minor threat to Lucifer and his horde. Without my son, there is no hope for you. Without my son, there can be no existence for any of us."
With this, the conversation ended. A decision would be make to expedite the Judas Priest's resurrection. Far off in another place and another time, a car screamed along a wet and slippery road. A heated argument among husband and wife took the wheel and coached it off the road, just enough to send it into a tailspin that ended with the car a twisted heap alongside the road.
"No, please God, No!" Shouted John.