Seven Sins

One by one the princes were being slaughtered and there was nothing that they could do about it. But maybe there was a way to fight back. Maybe somehow they could survive the avenging angels and the trials at the same time, and maybe they could get rid of Ezmeralda for good.

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2. Chapter One: The Month of Lucifer

“WE FOUND AN INTRUDER MY LORD.”

Malum looked up at the demons before him. He was amused at what he saw. An angel looked up at him and glared. He had the handsome face of a young man, with a halo of shining blond hair. His image flickered and showed his true form. Huge white wings, so beautiful that they were almost blinding appeared on his back. His face was still the beautiful face of a man but it now also had a face of an angry bull which had eyes that glistened red like blood from a wound, a majestic face of an eagle and the ferocious face of a lion. These were the faces that identified the angel as a Cherub.

The angel shook its head and the face of a lion roared defiantly at the demon king.

Malum smiled sardonically and snapped his fingers. Immediately the demons forced the angel to his knees.

“I would make this quick and painless.” the dark lord smiled again. “But that wouldn’t be any fun.”

One of the demon guards came forward holding a sword. He handed it to Malum and went back to stand behind the Cherub.

“They call him Charoum,” said one of the guards.

“An angel of silence. It seems I may have to kill you quickly after all...” Malum regarded Charoum and moved so that he could look him in the eye. “This won’t kill you permanently. So when you come back, tell Elohim that I will tear Heaven apart and burn every single one of his precious angels so that he can hear their cries of terror and agony as they fall into my realm.”

And without another word he rammed the sword into the angel’s heart.

 

“Marielle wait!” Asmodeus called to the dark angel that was now disappearing in anger.

“Spero putrescet in inferno!” she screeched at him in Latin. She disappeared in a puff of black smoke.

Luc sniggered. Egor rolled his eyes and ran his hand through his hair.

Levi appeared with puzzled look on his face. “What’s all the commotion about?”

Luc chuckled again. “You should’ve heard her.” He laughed. “It sounded like she was about to kill him. ‘I hope you rot in Hell!’.”

“It’s a bit too late for that, he’s already here,” Levi sniggered.

Secretly, Levi envied Asmodeus and wanted him and Marielle to break up. But he wasn’t going to tell his brother that…

Levi, Luc and Egor fell about laughing. Asmodeus glared at his brothers. His emerald green eyes glowed; a ball of fire came to his hand. He bared his teeth and snarled.

Abelinda appeared. “Boys,” she chastised. Her red hair seemed to light like a flame.

Asmodeus’ eyes softened and the fireball disappeared.

“Sorry mother,” he muttered.

“Yes we are truly sorry mother. Asmodeus was just having some girl problems... again,” Egor said biting his lip trying so very hard not to laugh.

Levi however, couldn’t stop himself. “That’s the fifth time this week!” he guffawed.

The boys started to laugh again.

“I hope a Seraph chokes you to death,” Asmodeus growled. He stalked off to his room.

“Ooooooh,” they called after him.

Their mother shook her head. “You’re behaving as bad as those mortal teenagers. You may be the same age but you are the superior species. Behave like it.” She paused. “Your father wishes to see you in the court room.”

The princes all went to meet their father. All seven princes stood before Malum. Abelinda went to sit beside her husband. Ezmeralda appeared and stood by her mother.

Malum took a deep breath and begun. “As you know my mind and soul will soon separate itself from my body in six months. Your mother will also be joining me when I depart from this realm. Because of this I will have to choose who will rule my realm for the next millennia or so… During this time each of you must prove to me why I should choose you to be the new ruler.”

The princes knew that by 'the next millennia or so' their father meant thwart anyone who tries to oppose your rule.

“What about me?” Ezmeralda asked.

“You’re a girl. You don’t get to rule. You get to serve us instead,” Satan sneered.

Ezmeralda hissed at him. He snarled back.

“Are you scared of female competition?” she retorted

Both Satan’s and Ezmeralda’s tempers flared. If their mother and father weren’t in the room Satan would’ve thrown something at her by now.

“Calm yourselves.” Malum sighed. He would have to teach Satan to have better control of his temper.  “Ezmeralda, my child, you know you cannot be a contender for the throne. It must be a male heir only. It is tradition, you know that.” he said in a soothing tone. This was rare for a demon.

“Why can’t we just be normal, and let the eldest rule... until he dies.”

“You know why Ezmeralda. They would kill each other. It is of their nature.”

Plots of murder were common with demons. Especially where there was a crown involved. That was why they had the trials. So that no one was killed because of anyone else. If anyone was killed it was because they were not strong enough.

Ezmeralda scowled. “That’s not fair! I have as much right to the throne as they do.” She turned to leave.

“You will not leave this room until I say so. Is that clear?” Malum bellowed. There was a loud thunder clap and a flash of lightning.

She turned but didn’t answer.

“Is that clear?” thunder rumbled again, emphasising his question.

“Yes father,” she murmured.

“Then the trials have begun. Six months, my sons. Six months.”

 

The seven princes were tired… oh so very tired. Their dark minds longed for more than just the dark realms. They wanted the world.

Ezmeralda wanted this too and if she played her cards right she would get what she desired.

 

Something was calling to the princes. Something dark and unnatural – yet it drew them to it. It was the call of Death itself. The Angel of Death. It had no face. Instead it was a hooded shadow cloaked in darkness. It had wings black like a night sky. It motioned with its long black claws.

Come hither, Death called to them. “The trials will begin here. If you die during the trials you will be taken from the realm that you are in, placed back in this one and will be put into a deep sleep. You will only awaken if the trial is complete, its voice softer than a whisper.

No sooner had the creature spoken, the seven princes were transported into darkness. The voice of Death echoed around them.

When the light returns, the trials begin,it paused. “Retrieve my scythe from the lake of souls. Only one of you may take it so do what is necessary to get it. But beware of the dangers that may occur. Heed my warning princes.”

The moonlight shone down on the Princes of Hell. A queer feeling settled over the princes; the feeling of being watched.

“Where are we?” Belphegor asked his brothers. He looked around, his green eyes searching for some sort of familiarity. He found none.

The princes looked around in unison. Trees towered over them. A cool breeze caressed their skin and ran through their hair.

“The lake of souls. We have to find it. If we get the scythe we can complete the trial.” said Luc.

“There is no we. We do this alone,” Marlon hissed. “That is the purpose of the trials. The angel said only one of us could obtain the scythe. Make no mistake, it will be me.”

Marlon didn’t care that he had to turn his back on his brothers. He wanted the throne for himself and no one was going to stand in his way. He disappeared, his greed making him wanton.

The remaining princes looked on. What could they do?

What they did best. They dispersed, turning from each other and allowing their true natures to take over. They had one thing on their minds and that was to find the scythe. The queer feeling of being watched disappeared. That was their mistake.

 

Luc wandered smelling the air, listening for the rush of water. He listened harder tuning out the sound of the wind whipping around him.

Snap!

The sound came from his left. He turned and saw a slender shadow making its way through the night. Intrigued, he followed it. It twisted and turned through the trees. Eventually it slowed and came to a halt. That's when he noticed that the figure had stopped by a lake. The lake of souls.

In its hand, Luc saw a dagger with a golden hilt. The unknown shadow raised the blade and cut its hand. Blood dripped into the lake. Once, twice, and then a third time. Then the wound closed. The shadow whispered words in a song-like voice. He moved forward to get a better look, trying not to make a sound. A voice in his head told him to focus on the task at hand but he was enticed by the figure, something about it drawing him nearer. The figure twitched in his direction.

“I know you’re there,” it said turning round to face him.

Luc stepped out of the shadows and saw the figure properly.

Tousled hair flowed past her waist; a glorious black mane that glistened in the moonlight. Red snapdragon flowers were placed in her hair like a floral crown. Sharp brown eyes watched his every move. She had high cheekbones, full red lips and flawless pale skin. Her burgundy dress was strapless and skin tight showing off her slim but curvaceous figure. As she walked towards him, he could see her feet were bare. There was no denying that he was stunned by her beauty.

“Who are you?” she asked him, pointing the dagger at him.

Luc smirked arrogantly. What harm could she bring him? He was immortal and she was a harmless girl.

“Do you even know how to use that?” his lips curved upwards in a smile.

Her eyes narrowed and she scowled at him.

“I have the sword. I ask the questions.”

“It’s a cinquedea actually,” Luc said smugly. “That’s a type of dagger by the way.”

She frowned. “I’m not here to banter. Answer me.”

Luc tilted his head to one side. With a flick of his wrist, the dagger was tossed into the murky depths of the lake.

“I am Prince Lucifer, heir to the throne of Hell.”

She gasped, taking a step back. He could smell her fear radiating off of her body. He liked affecting mortals in that way. Especially women.

“If I didn’t know any better, I’d say you were afraid of me,” Luc paused. “But if I were you, I’d be scared of me.”

“What do you want?” she hissed.

“What were you doing?”

“That’s none of your business.”

Fire appeared in Luc’s hand. The blaze glinted in his eyes illuminating the anger in them.

“Are you sure?”

She narrowed her eyes again.

“It’s for the river guardians; a blood sacrifice.”

“You know this place?

She looked at the flame in his palm and nodded slowly.

“I’m looking for something. A scythe.”

“For the trials?”

Luc nodded. “But I have to get it myself.”

“I can help you find it. But it will come at a price.” she smiled for the first time revealing pearl white teeth and a set of sharp fangs which gave her beauty a cruel twist.

“What's your name?”

“My name  is Cecilia.”

“Very well, Cecilia. Help me and I will give you what you want.”

 

The beautiful sound of singing filled his ears. It filled him with joy and made him wish for nothing else but to hear the sound of the voice. He forgot everything and only heard the sound of the song. It drew him nearer and nearer until he saw a naked woman in the water. She had captivating voice, her song enticed him, but that wasn’t the only thing that made him go to her in a trance-like state. Her pale pink lips turned upwards in an alluring smile as she sung. Her light brown hair was wet from the lake. Her blue eyes screamed danger but that didn’t deter Asmodeus. She was enchanting.

“Come closer,” she said beckoning him to her. “Come closer to me.”

And he did. He moved so that he was kneeling down by the water. He looked into her beautiful, heart stopping blue eyes.

“What’s your name?” her melodic voice rang through his ears.

“Asmodeus,” his voice a breathy whisper.

“A prince!” she laughed. “My sweet prince.”

Asmodeus liked how she referred to him. It instantly made him want to possess her – and she him.

“Closer... come closer to me... My sweet prince.”

he moved closer still. He could smell her cloying scent and hear the soft sound of her heartbeat.

“Your name, w-what's your n-name?” Asmodeus stammered, stunned by her appearance.

“My name is Leucosia.” She smiled at him. “Come. Swim with me.”

Asmodeus hesitated and then said, “I cannot swim.”

Leucosia smiled seductively and reached out to caress Asmodeus's face.

“You are divinely healthy. And I will not let anything happen to you.” she moved upwards and kissed him gently.

“Closer. Come closer to me, my sweet prince, Asmodeus.”

She kissed him again… and slowly dragged him down to the bottom of the lake.

 

Marlon looked around. He still could find the damn lake and he was getting frustrated. But the urge to find the scythe pushed him on. He heard water. Smiling to himself he went towards the sound. And there it was. The Lake of Souls. Marlon was sure he would be the one to make

Asmodeus couldn’t swim. Egor was bad at tracking. Luc was easily distracted. And the rest of his brothers, well, he could deal with them.

He walked to the lake and saw a face in the water. It was face of a young girl. Was she drowning? Marlon knelt down and peered into the water. She stared back at him. Her green eyes bored into his, like she could see into his soul. She came up to the surface slowly, taking a deep breath of air. He leant in closer.

The maiden smiled up at him sweetly… and lunged at him

 

“If this is the lake of souls, why are we still walking?”

Cecilia sighed exasperated. Luc had been endlessly asking questions and it was annoying her to no end. She wanted to throttle him, but she knew better than to kill a prince.

“Because the scythe isn't in that part of the lake.”

“So where is it?”

she spun round to face Luc. “We will get there when we get there! You are behaving like a irritating child.”

“Your very irritable aren't you.” Luc smirked.

“Just be quiet,” she muttered turning around.

Luc spun her back round to face him. He was intrigued by her personality and her stunning appearance. That and the fact that he enjoyed annoying her.

“I take it you don’t like me very much, Cecilia.”

“Why would you think that? I just love supercilious idiots,” she said dryly.

“You know, sarcasm is the lowest form of wit.”

She scowled at him and pulled away and started walking, muttering in Latin. He continued to taunt her throughout their journey, taking pleasure in pestering her.

“We're here,” she said.

Luc looked at the lake. He saw it glisten in the moonlight like silver. And he saw the scythe hovering over the water. It's curved blade looked deadly. He could sense the power within it. He could sense that it could kill a man with one stroke. The snatch was black embroidered with silver skulls. He could sense the power that was being emitted from it. It pulled Luc to it making him want to take it from the water.

“Beautiful, isn't it,” Cecilia whispered.

“The lake? Well sure if you're into that sort of thing.”

“The scythe you idiot.”

Luc grinned at her then looked at the scythe again. “I guess it is.”

“It's too bad I can't let you have it.”

“Wha-?”

At lightning speed Cecilia slammed Luc into a tree, her arm at his throat cutting off his protests.

“I'm so sorry,” she whispered. And her hand plunged into his chest, ripping out his heart.

 

“Come back princes... come back. Your trial is over. Come back and let me see the victor...” Death hissed.

First Asmodeus then Marlon, Egor, Levi, Luc and finally Satan, awoke from their slumber and stood up. They saw Death.

And they saw Beelzebub holding the scythe. He gave the scythe to Death and that was it; he had won the first trial. Levi, Egor and Satan snarled at Beelzebub, their rage taking over them.

“You,” Satan seethed. “You killed us! You self-serving son of a bitch!” Satan shouted.

“I did what was necessary. Besides, I didn’t really kill you. You're still here aren't you?” Beelzebub said with no remorse.

“The principle is still the same. We still died because of you.”

A cruel and twisted laugh was emitted from Death.

“Calm yourselves princes. It doesn’t matter. If anything it was a sign of strength.”

“Strength?” the brothers said in unison.

Death nodded slowly. “Return to your realm…this trial is over.

 

Ezmeralda threw her glass at Egor. With a wave of his hand the glass changed direction so that it hit a wall.

“You vain turd!”

“Oh do be quiet, Ezmeralda. Jealousy is not a very nice quality.” Egor seemed bored of his sisters’ moods. He ran his hand through his hair.

Ezmeralda cursed. A demon appeared. It was Thian. He was a war demon and Ezmeralda’s closest friend. Though this was forbidden, the princes had promised to keep it a secret but only because they had gotten something out of it.

All seven princes looked up.

“Is everything alright?” Thian asked. His eyes narrowed. That was the one creepy thing about him; his eyes, they were black as coal. And it wasn’t just his irises, it was his entire eye. He usually appeared when Ezmeralda got really worked up.

“Everything’s fine. Ezmeralda is just getting upset over nothing,” Egor sighed.

Over nothing! Are you mad? Just because you get to compete for the throne, it’s nothing!”

Finding the new ruler was tearing the family apart. Levi, Egor and Satan would not speak with Beelzebub, and Luc, Asmodeus and Marlon were pissed with all of them.

If they stood together, they would’ve been stronger.

Suddenly, an arrow shot straight through the lounge window and into Egor’s heart.

Ezmeralda screamed.

“Get down!” Thian yelled. He pushed Ezmeralda downwards shielding her from the arrows. More arrows were fired. Glass shattered. Ezmeralda screamed again. As abruptly as the firing had begun, it stopped.

“Sancti stercore,” Luc cried.

Everyone stood up. The princess and princes of darkness looked at their now dead brother. This wasn’t a trial. Belphegor was dead for real. They couldn’t believe it. The princes, which had once been a group of seven, were now six. They all realised what was going on. They knew where the arrows had come from... and they knew that someone was hunting them down

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