The Burning Flames in Hell A novel

Marjorie Clements is a thirteen year old girl who lives with her parents in Louisiana. When she meets a group of strangers, she finds out that she's not as normal as other girls are.

The new fantasy novel by Robert Helliger.

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1. Louisiana demon

~~~~

​The Louisiana heat was overbearing for me. 

​I stared at mom and dad who were sipping lemonade in a soft glass. It was eighty degrees...and ​burning​. "Marjorie, have a drink", Mom asked me. "Yes, Mom", I answered her. She smiled; Dad also smiled. We lived in a massive Mansion, and my parents were rich. I was used to having things go my way; I also had servants. I knew no better; I knew what it meant to have everything a teenage girl wanted, (and needed), in life. But, to me, life was boring. There wasn't anything that happened to me at school; there was the prom, school dances that caused me major embarrassment, and dating boys. Well, that and reading books at home. And cable television. And Netflix. I looked out of my bedroom window, as I did Miss Cafferty's English homework. Suddenly I felt heat course through my body; I felt the beginnings of a fire that was talking care of me. And then I knew I wasn't human anymore. I was a female demon in a teenager's body.

~~~~

I watched my work go up in flames...literally. 

My hazel eyes were gone. They were an orange/red colour. Strange markings were on my face, ears, and flesh; strange markings were on my feet, and arms. It was horrible to think I had changed into one of Hell's citizens. In short, I hoped mom and dad wouldn't see me; I hoped that the change wasn't permanent. Or was it! I baulked at the notion that it was the normal hormones of teenage puberty. But, to me, this was too extreme even for me. Demons didn't exist-well, as Father McNally, the Irish Priest, talked about fire and brimstone on Sunday mornings; demons were evil...and didn't exist. Or did they! I wasn't sure that demons would come for me. I was a normal Louisiana southern girl who wanted to see Metallica concerts, and write books on my computer. Mom and dad would prefer that than to meet a boyfriend. "Marjorie! Can you leave your bedroom? Dinner's ready", Mom asked; I blinked my eyes. Then I changed back to normal, as if willing myself to be back to normal. And when I did so, I felt relief that nothing else had happened. I wore a blue T-shirt, black jeans, a brown belt, and blue socks. My black school shoes were polished, and next to my bed. 

I headed downstairs to the spacious Dining Room. Mom was preparing meatloaf in the kitchen. I smelled the aromas, and smiled. "I lost my homework", I said. "Lost it? How!", Dad piped in. "It...​burned. Don't give me grief; don't...", I said. "Have you been smoking? It causes cancer", Mom said. I shook my head. "It was my fault. Let's eat dinner, please", I said. And they gave up on getting information out of me; they sat down the black chairs. I was in the third chair. As I rested my feet on it, the chair burned...and I gasped in shock. Then it was the end of me as a human girl; I was a demon-girl with demonic powers. Mom screamed. So did Dad. And then I knew one thing was certain. Whatever I was becoming, I couldn't stay home now. My life as I knew it was over.

~~~~

I didn't have any time to enjoy dinner. It was a disaster. And, after my time as a normal girl ended in flames, I opened the front door...and ran away. I knew what it meant to begin again. Mom and Dad would learn to forgive me; I would forgive them as I turned twenty-one, and an adult. In my thirteen years, I knew what it was like to give people the look that said that I meant business; my thirteen years was average. Nothing out of the ordinary happened; nothing happened that meant something. And I walked down the thick road towards the swamps. I could see the frogs; I could see other creatures watching me like an intruder. I took a long, deep, sigh. Up ahead, I saw three teenagers. They were smoking cigarettes. "Marjorie. What happened?", Alison Kendall asked her. "I left home", I answered her. Alison shook her head. "I'm sorry". The other two teenagers shook their heads. "That's too bad", Anson Sheer, Alison's boyfriend, said. "What are you gonna do?", Frank Lang asked her. "I don't know, Frank; I don't know", I answered him. 

And then I smiled at them, and headed away from the swamp.

~~~~

The swampland was old. It was around since nineteen thirty-seven. I heard the sound of footsteps. A woman I hadn't meant before gazed at me. "Ah, a new hellish demon girl". I stopped still in my tracks. "Excuse me, do I know you?", I asked her. "No, child. I am Dee Firestone", she answered me.  I stared at her flaming black hair; I saw her black eyes gleam at me, as if she was eager to show off her power. "I changed into a demon", I told her; Dee Firestone grinned. "That happened to me when it first started". I imagined that people thought I was crazy; I imagined mom and dad were thinking their only daughter was ​mad. "It wasn't my fault", I said. Dee grinned at me; I grinned back. "I didn't eat my dinner". Dee, who wore a red gown, had black eyes. "Our kind will survive only through the Blackness of Time", she said. I didn't know what was, and didn't ask. Dee was tall. She was six foot two; I was five-five. Suddenly I changed into a demon. The constant changing behaviour irked me. I thought that Dee wouldn't wait for me. But she did. "Nearby is The Demon's Cross. You mustn't disturb the Demon Lords", Dee said, warningly. "The Demon Lords", I said. "Yes, there's the Demon Kings, Demon Queens, Demon Princes, and Demon Princesses". I took my time to adjust to the news that there were demon royalty around. I saw a black gate nearby. Two demons were asleep. "​Get up!​", Dee ordered them. One of them spoke. "We're sorry Dee. We were taking a nap". I gazed at them. "This is Marjorie. She's a new demon". I smiled at them. "Oh, there's a lot of new demons here at The Demon's Cross". I nodded. I walked towards The Cross. It shimmered in a bright red and orangey glow; it shimmered all of the time, making it a wonder that caused me to think that hell was real. "I'm hungry", I said to Dee. "There's a demon tavern up ahead. ​The Demon's Mark​", Dee said. I nodded. "I haven't got any money", I told her. "Here's thirty gold coins". I blinked my eyes. "Fine by me", I smiled. I gripped the money in my hot, red, hand; I opened the front door to the tavern. Dee followed behind me...and the beginning of my new adventure had begun.

~~~~

​The Demon's Mark Tavern​ was full of weird people. No; no. Demons. They were drinking fire ale in a red mug; they were drinking the strong drink as I appeared on the scene. Dee smiled at them. "This is Marjorie. She is a fire demon". I didn't want any kind of attention. "A fire demon. She's rare these days", Carl Jaeger Firestone said. He gazed at me like I was some kind of wonder-girl; I wasn't. "I'm not a circus animal", I said. Carl grinned. "No; no. I didn't mean any kind of offence; I am in awe of female fire demons here". I smiled. I headed to a red coloured bar; I saw a tavern demon girl smiling at me. "New here?", she asked me. "Yes, I'm Marjorie". The demon nodded. "April Firestone". I nodded. "What do you like to eat and drink?". I gazed at the menu on the red wall. "Demon Pie, and Firestone ale, please". I paid for my dinner, then sat down on a red seat. I stared at the warm fireplace that was in the middle of the tavern...and remembered a room for me. "How much is it for a room?", I enquired. "Five gold coins", April said.  "Can I have a room, please?". "Room 3 is free", she said. I had fifteen gold coins left. Once I ate my late dinner, Dee smiled at me. She and her brother spoke in private, as I became used to being a demon.

~~~~

My room was small. It had a black bed, a single glass window, a brown cupboard, and two grey lamps. Several books lay on the bed. I picked it up. They were full of demon magic; they seemed to hold supernatural power that intrigued me. I started to yawn. And, as I went to bed, I dreamed of what I was becoming. 

~~~~

The next morning, I heard the sound of yelling. I was dressed like a demon. I wasn't human anymore. The thought that being a demon had bothered me; I opened the front door. Tiny fire marks stained the door...then fizzled out like magic. I walked towards the Bar. April smiled at me. "Breakfast time", she asked me. "Yes, what is on the menu?", I asked her. "Pancakes, hamburgers, stew, and fire ale". I blinked my red/orangey eyes. "Pancakes...and fire ale, please", I said. "Three gold coins", April said. I paid her the money. I had twelve gold coins left. "Can I pay for another night here?", I asked her. "Yes, five gold coins", April said. I gave her more of the coins; I had seven gold coins left.  Dee Firestone, and Carl Jaeger Firestone were warming their warm hands by the ancient black fireplace; April Firestone, their daughter, was rubbing the black bench with a red rag with her right hand. Suddenly I saw a female demon grinning at me. "I don't know you, I'm Zara Westwood". "Marjorie Clements". I stared at her; I saw her smile. "This infernal place is in Hell, Marjorie for a reason. There's a lot of demons who want power. The Demon Lords are battling each other for centuries. It gets tiresome, you know". Zara had long, black, hair, red eyes, and tall. She stood six foot one. As my pancakes and fire ale was served, Zara also ate her pancakes. And drank her fire ale. Suddenly we saw the front door was open...and a group of demon assassins arrived. They wore black hoods on their heads; they walked towards the Bar. I stared at them. And, as I watched the lead demon assassin watching me, it grinned at me with intense curiosity. Then it gripped its sharp axe handle in its right, clawed, hand, and glided towards April.

"We'd like some stew, and fire ale, please April. And several rooms for the night".

"Of course Lord Blackheart", she said. Zara whispered to me. "Don't move!", she informed me. I finished eating the pancakes; I sipped my fire ale. as Lord Blackheart stared at me. "Zara, I didn't know there's a demon-girl here". I spoke up. "Marjorie Clements". I ignored that fact that it was a demon Lord; I waited to die. But seconds later, it laughed evilly. "It seems we'd better get you to learn about proper demon court behaviour". I shrugged. "Yes, my Lord", I told him. And iwe had come to an understanding. Zara was impressed. "It looks like you'll fit in here, Marjorie", she told me. And we finished our breakfast in silence.

~~~~

I watched the demons enjoying the time in the tavern. With my stomach full, I watched Zara walking to the fireplace. She gazed out of the window. I heard the sound of a carriage was outside. Suddenly, as everyone continued their own business, I vowed to survive...no matter the cost to my life was.

~~~~

The front door was open.

Suddenly I saw a demon woman. She walked towards the fireplace. Lord Blackheart gasped in surprise. "Lady Redwood", he said. And he bowed. The woman stopped warming her hands. She had red, flaming, hair, black, sunken, eyes, and was wearing a black hat on her head. She was wearing a red gown. Her black boots gleamed in darkness; her face was white. "Lord Blackheart. A pleasure". She looked at me as if I was a magnet to Hell's creatures. "And who are you, dear?", she asked me. "Marjorie Clements, My Lady; I used to be human. I'm a new fire demon", I answered her with all of the strength that I wanted to use. She shivered. "Ah, fire demons are rare". I was told that somewhere, as Zara grinned at me. I smiled at her. "What brings you to the tavern, my Lady?", I asked her. "Blood Angels, dear", Lady Redwood answered. I took my time to digest the news. "Blood Angels", I said. "Yes, they're our enemies from times past". Zara nodded "Mom was a Blood Demon. She used to tell me about angels when I was a girl-demon". I nodded. Then I understood that all girls had parents who had their own issues to deal with.

~~~~

I had a lot to deal with. I was thinking that fire demons had special powers. I hadn't been training; I was useless. Or was I? Nonetheless, I was part of the tavern now. And, for me, I wasn't going to believe that I was once human; I was now a fire demon in Hell.

~~~~

The day moved onward. By Midday, the fiery red sun burned outside. I was hungry. "Can I have some stew?", I asked April. "Of course". I paid her three gold coins. I had four gold coins left. As I stood on a spare seat, dark, threatening clouds hovered in the sky. We knew that the hot weather in Hell was normal; rain wasn't normal. Zara sat next to me, and ordered some stew. As we ate in silence, we knew one thing was certain. That the time was right to live here...where I belonged.

, ~~~

The human demon hunter walked towards the tavern. He was thinking that the danger had ended. He was speaking to Amos Deere, the old hunter who died when he was eighty, "Make sure all demons are dead, David". And he nodded, and vowed to take over. At thirteen he wasn't concerned about his parents. They had died two years' ago; they had left him alone to travel across town. He had short, black hair, blue eyes, and average height; he wore a grey jumper, blue jeans, a black belt, black socks, and black shoes on his feet. His silver watch gleamed, as he stared at the tavern. Feeling hungry, he opened the front door. And, as he did so, he saw Marjorie Clements. At first he gasped in surprise. The demon-girl looked human. But she wasn't. David walked over a black table, and rested his tired legs. Marjorie watched the human boy with a keen interest. "You're in the wrong place". I said, "I'm a demon hunter", David said. Zara laughed. "Humans don't usually come here unless they're magical", she said. David shook his head. He wanted to deal with all demons. He didn't want to die-yet. I saw his hesitation; I saw his feelings were shattered. "You need some clothes, David so you can stay here", I told him. He stared at me, and knew that he wasn't going to die by the end of the evening.  "Rooms are five gold coins", April said. David watched the bar-girl, and nodded. He grabbed a silver bag that had fifty gold coins in it; he took out ten gold coins. "Enough for two nights", he said. April took the gold coins. "Your room is to the far left, upstairs". David nodded. "I'll come down for a meal afterwards". And, as he opened the room's door, he flicked on the bright light, then saw a single bed. A single window was open. A hellish wind blew outside. David closed the door, then he headed downstairs towards one of the chairs...and sat down. "What do you like to eat, David?", April asked him. "Some beef stew, please", he told her. "Three gold coins", April said. As he paid for his stew, he had thirty-seven gold coins left in his bag.

~~~~

Zara ordered her beef pie. She paid three gold coins to April. "Thank you, dear", she said. Suddenly Lord Blackheart and Lady Redwood were talking by the fireplace. "Would you care to dine with me, My Lady?", he asked her. "Gladly, My Lord", she answered. As they walked to the bar, they ordered some steak and ale. "Fifteen gold coins please, My Lord, My Lady", she told them. "I'll take care of everything", Lord Blackheart said.  He kissed Lady Redwood, then paid ten more gold coins for two evenings before the night was over.

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