"While I often champion mercy, I am afraid that this demon is as guilty as any devilish spawn for the fate of these good priests. To let such a malicious creature, however small, run is to allow evil to scrape by another day."
Michael turned after this to address Damien and the others, authority in his tone and every movement. "Damien, you should transport Ms. Marianne and her uncle away from here before we continue further. I sense the demons shall only get stronger the deeper we go in. Can you do this?"
"S... sure... but... where do I take 'em?"
"Find a public place, somewhere safe, perhaps somewhere they know from town. Father Patrick may need a clinic to ensure he hasn't sustained any wounds, so start there. Then when your task is done, return to us here."
There was no arguing with the archangel, Damien knew, gulping. He didn't mind the leaving part. It was the coming back that worried him. The coming back and probably never seeing Marianne again.
"Yessir..." he answered, bowing his head. He turned to the blond girl and her uncle, who both stared back, most likely both wondering how this teenage boy was going to whisk them away out of the infested church to safety, he figured. That was when he spread out his wings--in a movie, they would have been pure, majestic, snowy white wings, perhaps with a golden glow. These were instead more of an off-white, a little scraggly, albeit functional, and to Marianne and Father Patrick at that moment, their imperfections made Damien look no less an angel.
"Y... you really a-are a..." the girl stammered, her blue eyes wide and a little teary. Her fingers sought out the cross he had given her to wear, and clasped it, finding stability in its cool touch. Father Patrick hugged her with one arm, helping to calm her.
The young angel simply bowed his head in a nod. He wished he had something more cool to say... but maybe words weren't the way to say it at all. "Come on..." he told her instead, spreading his arms, "let's get you both to safety..."
Maybe, he thought, this was finally his little chance to play the hero and do some good.
“But he’s so small and harmless! It can’t even run from me! I can’t kill something that’s so completely and utterly defenceless!”
“Though, now that I think about it... Can I take it home with me? I’ve always wanted a pet! I’ll keep it somewhere out of sight from Phantasmo, and then I can have him ‘accidentally’ discover it and watch the hilarity ensue! What do you say?”
Michael quirked a golden eyebrow and tried to stop another inappropriate smirk; the holy weren't supposed to find such scenarios funny, he reminded himself yet again. But he watched the amusement from a distance in his mind, and enjoyed it for what it was. Then he shot another piercing look at Runt to make the demon sweat a bit more before he spoke to Cat.
"You will keep him under your claw, ensuring no innocents come to harm from this pest's misdeeds?"
Meanwhile, Damien was trying to navigate the clinic yard without having a rather embarrassing run-in with the sprawling branches of their oak trees. The meager nighttime lighting around the place wasn't helping matters.
"Ouch! S-sorry about this, guys!"
Even from a few miles out, he thought he could hear the bellow that rose up then from the innermost reaches of St. Martin's church.
“Consider him safe. If I can look after someone like Phantasmo, a critter like that won’t be much of an issue, right?”
Just then, a thunderous roar shook the building.
“Just so we’re clear: that was a bad sign, right?”
Michael never got a chance to answer, as a gigantic green beast burst from the floor, its form roughly humanoid. Its arms both split into two long whip-like tentacles below the elbows. It had massive skeletal wings, and a long, spiked tail. It lacked a head; there was a huge gaping maw where its head should have connected to its neck. A sickly ooze came from the maw, covering the behemoth.
"Do not let the ooze touch you!" Michael boomed, seeking a weak point in the abomination and settling on detaching its tentacles first.
"I wasn't exactly planning to," Cat replied, readying his claws with an audible sound and awaiting the enemy's move.
And that move was to belch a vile green fluid and take to the skies with a great roar. He apparently was no great strategist, but nothing beats the classics.
"Putrid!" Michael grimaced, spinning his sword to create a wall of light that blocked out the bile. "Come Cat, we must give chase!" he cried, and then scooped the feline up before giving a flap of his mighty wings. They took to the air instantly, steadily gaining altitude.
It was at that time that Damien set off on his way back from the clinic, having horrible timing as always.
Meanwhile, the gigantic demon gave another belch of a roar and tried to whip the angel and his cat companion with his pair of tentacles. The earth below them shook with the basso cry.
"How long is that nifty shield thing gonna work?" Cat asked as they dodged and feinted deftly away from the clumsy, furious thing.
Michael severed a tentacle as it came near, slicing through it with a searing blade of light, "We'll have to pray long enough!"
Not one to sit idly by, Cat then leapt forward to cover the wounded demon in a flurry of swipes, causing the creature to cry out once again, its great body shaking in pain and loss of control. Michael swooped in to catch the feline just as he began to fall.
The demon spat more bile in its rage, determined to end its assailiants' lives before they could end its. It snapped his hideous mouth at them, but Michael thrust his sword forward then, and it hadn't expected that--normally things fled from its gaping maw. The heavenly blade sliced open its mouth as the bile hit another barrier of light. The tide was turning in the heroes' favor quickly.
That was when Damien spotted him far off, and felt very much like he'd rather be a rat underground than an angel right where he was.
"O... oh God..."
OoC: I'll let you do the next part and will PM the log to you so you can. ^^
The very much not-amused gigantic demon beast let out a terrifying roar. Then it spotted Damien. Before it could do anything, though, Michael cut off its tail. It should be pointed out at this point that demon biology is significantly different from that of humans, including when it comes to the topic of reproduction (and the less known about that, the better). It follows, then, that motherhood as we know it is completely unknown to demonkind. This fact did not deter the great demon from dearly wishing its mommy was here right now.
The great beast roared again, flailed what was left of its tail around in a desperate attempt to keep its assailants back, then launched itself at Damien. It had barely left the ground before noticing it had company; Cat had latched onto its right wing. As far as the demon was concerned, today was one of those days.
While Damien was busy quietly praying, Michael managed to overtake the demon, and plunged his blade into its left wing. In a last-ditch effort to at the very least kill something, it roared and puked a load of green stuff of the less-than-pleasant variety (if not quite as unpleasant as, say, Brussels sprouts) at Damien, who only barely managed to dodge it by quickly flying up.
Meanwhile, Cat found that the taste of demon wing was not to his liking (if not quite as bad as the food sold at some of the more dubious fast-food outlets that Phantasmo would frequent), and the great demon beast, while roaring one more time for old times’ sake, found itself losing altitude on account of having its wings destroyed.
"Now Damien!" Michael thundered. "Retrieve Cat while I deliver the finishing blow!"
"R-retrieve..." just looking at where the feline was made Damien go pale and gulp, "t-the cat from..."
"Hurry, now, before it falls on the church and destroys it or anything else!"
Thankful he had finished his prayer for courage and strength, the young angel gulped again, nearly shut his eyes, and darted forward as fast as his wings could go towards Cat and the plummeting demonic beast. The creature was in too much pain, too close to death to worry about him. But its odor was foul. It was all Damien could do to keep from passing out as he neared Cat enough for the animal to leap into his arms.
"Clear the way!" Michael commanded, already coming on in a blinding corona of light and speed.
"W-waaait!" Damien wailed, his wings faltering for an instant--and luckily, too, because he could fall faster than he could fly. He was already nearly to the ground when he caught himself, and overhead Michael was plunging his holy blade through the beast.
Expecting a shower of blood, guts, and stinky flesh, instead there was only a burst of light, and the creature disintegrated into so many little bits, until all that remained was a glowing white cross in the air. When Damien could finally see through the bright lights, Michael was fluttering down, seeming to be in thankful prayer himself.
"I-I can't believe it..." the younger angel murmured, half to Cat, half to himself, "it's over... we survived..."
OoC: This post is horrendous but you deserved at least something finally. x___x Sorrrryyyy!
Cat affectionately rubbed his head against Damien a few times, then made his way over to his master. Phantasmo was out cold, and it looked like he would be for quite a while. Cat proceeded to scan the wizard’s body, carefully moving his paws along it, before deciding on the perfect spot.
He didn’t like to do this, he truly didn’t. It always left such an unpleasant taste in his mouth. Granted, he did love Phantasmo’s reaction to being bitten, and that, more than anything, made him go through with it.
One loud shriek later, and Phantasmo was awake and crying like a little baby.
“Good morning, Phantasmo! Had a nice rest?”
The wizard looked around. Slowly, recent events began flowing back into his mind.
“I’ve got some good news, and some bad news for you. Good news is, all those big scary demons are gone, and nothing is out to kill you right now. Well, not much, anyway. Certainly nothing that’s gigantic and powerful and that cannot be easily convinced that a few obnoxious remarks aren’t worth killing you over. Bad news is, your contributions to saving the day are non-existent.”
Phantasmo got up.
“Well, looks like my job is done here. I’d love to stay, but look at the time, I’ve got to go! Bye!”
"Hold on... our business is not yet finished," Michael said. When he spoke, despite the calmness of his baritone, Phantasmo's feet suddenly became like leaden weights slugging through swamp mud. He couldn't lift them for anything, not even to run away crying for his mother or to the nearest pub.
"Damien," he said then, turning to the young angel, "I wish to give you this..." he paused, a sword of light half-materialized in his hands, as he looked over at his charge. The boy's face looked shaken and pale, but his eyes remained as steady as he could. He'd been terrified in the face of that demon, but he had helped even so, in his own way, to protect the people around them. Perhaps then, not a weapon, but something else was in order. "No... an instrument of harm would not suit you... would not aid you. You are not a soldier. But this..."
Slowly, the sword began to change shape, flattening, widening, rounding on one side, until it became a shield of some sort of silvery, light-colored metallic substance. It glowed with a light of its own, a simple, unadorned cross on its front.
"This will enable you to protect those you care about far better than just your hands alone... take good care of it."
Damien could hardly find words as his mentor passed him the holy shield. At most all he could do was gulp and stammer a "T-thuh... thanks..." after a moment of staring at the gift.
By then, Michael was already turning to Cat, ignoring Phantasmo as if he were simply a fly that liked to buzz around the animal. A life to be looked after, but not much more. "And for you, friend, what can I offer? It seems you are not likely to leave this 'wizard' long. But perhaps there is something else...?" He arched a golden eyebrow and let the question hang in the air.
There were times when Phantasmo regretted not learning any practical spells like, say, teleportation. Right now was one of these moments. His head hurt, he felt humiliated, and he felt a powerful ache in his testicular glands region, as if it had recently been subjected to a blunt trauma such as, say, a kick. All he really wanted right now was lots of alcohol and lots of sleep, and he didn’t particularly care about the order they came in.
His familiar, meanwhile, was having a pleasant chat with an Archangel, which was something the feline wished could happen more often; Archangels (or at least, the ones he had met so far) provided much better conversation partners than Phantasmo, Cat found.
“Well, I’m just a simple cat, really. I have everything I need as far as I can tell. I suppose a new litter box or a toy or something might be nice. Haven’t really given it much thought, really.”
“Incidentally, you wouldn’t happen to have an email address, would you? I figure it might be fun keeping in touch. If nothing else, it’d be nice for me to finally have someone to communicate with that’s capable of seeing a link between constant self-aggrandizement and a lack of popularity.”
Michael chuckled, a low, deep sound of genuine amusement that resonated more in his abdomen then it did outloud. "I would not quite call it 'email', but... you may send one of your electronic messages addressed simply to 'Michael.' It will get there," he said, a smile persisting on his lips. "As for the gift... a toy, yes, that should do..."
The archangel knelt down and cupped his hands as light began to collect between them, no less bright than it had been when forming Damien's shield, but in a far more condensed package. There was a little gleam of humor in his blue eyes when finally the light resolved into a small, animal-like form, and he placed it before Cat.
Squeak! it went when it lightly hit the ground.
Damien stared, his jaw slack. He couldn't believe what his mentor just made.
Sitting before Cat was, in fact, a squeaky mouse toy. And it glowed with a silver light. It had a button nose and two round ears and cute black eyes, with a little pink tail. It was soft and squishy and looked perfect for chewing on.
And around one of its ears was a golden ring design that looked suspiciously like a halo.
“You're the best Archangel ever, and don't let anyone ever tell you any different.”
He affectionately rubbed his head against Michael's legs, holding his toy by its halo.
“I think I like you angel types. I had a good time with you and Damien. Could you tell him I said hi?”
“Anyway, it seems the demons were defeated, the good guys won, Phantasmo got abused physically and mentally, and all is well in general. Also, I get the impression my wizard wants to leave, so I'm afraid we'll have to be leaving soon. Pity, really. I hope I'll get to see you again.”
"I am sure our paths will cross again, brave Cat," Michael nodded, giving the feline a gentle scratching behind the ears, earning him a contented purr. He then straightened up to his full, towering height and watched with his protege as wizard and cat departed, likely for a tavern somewhere.
"T-the cat said hi!?" Damien stared after them, as his mentor simply smiled. "Man... were you guys talking this whole time? Is that something I could learn?"
"You merely have to learn to listen," the archangel said, a gleam in his eyes. He knew Damien hated it when he was cryptic.
"But I do! I... I mean I try to... aw, heck, I do better with dogs anyway... but that cat was pretty cool... he did way more than I did..."
"Don't discredit yourself," Michael told him, turning to him with a gentle expression, like that of an encouraging teacher, "thanks to you, the girl and her uncle were saved, along with many more priests. You did well."
"Huh... I... I guess that is true..." the young man's face brightened, "...thanks, sir..."
"It is time I go now, Damien, but I go with the confidence that you will need to call upon me far less in the future. I have great faith in you, young one. What you lack in strength, you make up for in heart."
"Oh yuck, is that from a fortune cookie or--"
The words froze still in the young man's throat at the glare his mentor gave him. He swallowed hard and instead just nodded. Sentimental-sounding or not, maybe there was some truth to it.
"T-thanks sir... I hope so."
OoC: The end! Unless you had something you wanted to add. ^^