On the 11th of January 1937 Johnathon Ignes is born. He is a suitable weight, in good health...but different from all the other babies in the ward, because he is born immune to guilt. 2 years and 235 days later, worldwide war breaks out.
Sent away as an evacuee, Johnathon grows up away from his mother, and meets Erebus, a cheeky paperboy. Erebus too, has no guilt, and under his influence, Johnathon grows up into a monster.
This is the story of how that monster, became a leader.
- The prequel to 'Souls' (but will make sense if you haven't read it) -


14. Chapter 13

4th November 1953:

“Cheers!” The crowd of men jeered as they drowned themselves in pints of beer. Johnathon and Erebus were in the centre of the gathering, drinking far more than the others, but having a better time because of it. They’d waited until the men had been drunk enough, then joined them without suspicion. Neither Johnathon nor Erebus knew if they’d be murdering anyone that night, it depended on their mood, they were just going with the flow. The pub wasn’t particularly busy, it was midweek and most people were at home with their families, but it was still full enough that a distinct smell of musk and dogs filled the air. Johnathon and Erebus weren’t keen on the atmosphere, but it was the easiest way to get drunk in Cantumville, and Erebus had a…special relationship with the landlady which earned them both discounts. Johnathon could see her in the corner of his eye, gazing at Erebus from behind the bar, her dignity absent, she probably thought it was love, the poor girl. Erebus loved to mess around with the young hearts of the women and girls of the town. He moved them around as if they were chess pieces, playing them and never losing a game. He’d see them until they began to bore him, then forget about them. It had all started with little Sally back when they were younger…but if you said the name ‘Sally Dew’ to Erebus now, he wouldn’t have any clue who you were talking about. Johnathon on the other hand was more reserved, he was too lazy to put in the effort needed to start even the feeblest of relationships. Instead, he tried to have as much fun as possible, no attachments, no rules, and no guilt.

“How’s the new job going Harry?”

“What’s the wife up too this evening George?”

“I haven’t seen you in ages Ed!”

The men began to make small talk, finishing the rest of their pints between sentences. It was evident from just these few words that they were slipping further and further away from soberness, as the topics that entered the conversation wouldn’t have even been thought of half an hour ago. Harry had a new job because he was fired from the old. George’s wife wasn’t faithful, and the question had two meanings to it. Ed had been avoiding everyone, and actually turned up that night by accident. The men were all two faced idiots. Except Johnathon and Erebus, who were two faced masterminds.

“I’ll go get us another couple of drinks” Erebus slurred in Johnathon’s ear, stumbling over to the bar. Johnathon could tell from the expression on Erebus’s face that this simple action would take a while, and that Erebus would spend a good five minutes flirting with the landlady, so he decided to briefly escape the hot steamy pub.

Outside, the temperature was significantly cooler, and the wind whistled harshly through the trees. Cigarette smoke infiltrated the air and roughened the lungs of those who were unfortunate to inhale it, and the muffled clamour of shouting from inside the establishment could be heard by anyone nearby. Johnathon stood still, letting his heart rate decrease, and his life slow down for a moment. He removed the picture of his mother and father from his pocket (in which it still always lay), and smiled slightly as he examined it. It had been taken the Christmas before Johnathon had been born, and his mother’s stomach was significantly curved. Lenard held her in a gentle hold with one hand, whilst lifting up mistletoe with the other, his lips puckered, and Margret was leaning away but grinning wildly. They acted as though they didn’t care that their picture was being taken, and that was a beautiful thing to Johnathon. He did occasionally wonder what his mother was up to, or how her life was going, sometimes he even considered paying he a visit…but a life with her was nothing compared to a life with Erebus, who understood and exhilarated in their shared gifts. Johnathon was placing the image back in his pocket, when he noticed some writing on the back. Confused, he lifted it up to the moonlight and read the message.

To Johnathon Ignes and Erebus McKoy.

My name is Eloise, and I would very much like to meet you both. You shall hear from me by the end of the month, that is a promise. Do not be alarmed, I only wish to explain and aid you both, believe me when I say there is a lot you do not know.

I’ll meet you both very soon,


Johnathon stepped back involuntarily, a rare emotion of fear sparking in his mind. Shoving the picture back in his pocket, he darted indoors to find Erebus.

Erebus was still at the bar, talking to the landlady boldly, his body slunk over the wooden surface. Johnathon barged through the clusters of people, and sat down next to him.

“We need to talk” he muttered, giving Erebus a light shove.

“Do you mind? I’m trying to have a moment here” Erebus kicked him, tuning back to the barmaid.

“I need to talk to you” Johnathon spat, his tone more urgent than before, “I need to talk to you now” Erebus reluctantly got down from his stool, and followed Johnathon outside.

“What is it?” He asked once they were out of earshot, “It better be important or else I’m gonna…”

“Someone sent us a note” Johnathon cut him off. Erebus’s expression didn’t change at this, it remained relaxed and dumb.

“So…?” He sighed.

“They sent us a note on the back of a photograph. The photograph of my parents. The photograph I always keep in my pocket.” Johnathon broke it down for him.

“If it’s always in your pocket how did the sender get their hands on it?” Erebus questioned him.

“Well I don’t sleep with my coat on do I?” Johnathon snapped, shaking his head in frustration. He met Erebus’s eyes…which had changed from being casually distant, to suddenly alert. It took Johnathon a few seconds to catch up. If the only time the photo wasn’t on him was when they were sleeping…it meant the sender, this ‘Eloise’, had broken into their house whilst they slept. “What do we do?” Johnathon murmured.

“We find Eloise,” Erebus decided, “Before she finds us”.

“And then?” Johnathon pursued.

“And then we kill her” Erebus chuckled. Johnathon, no longer intimidated by the note, laughed too, and they walked off into the night, determined and excited.

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