“So tell me, comrades, when a person is raped, who is the victim?” Azazel said with a smile on his face as he leaned back on his plush rich couch, a goblet of wine in his hand, which he sipped from every now and then. Two well-built guards stood behind him, motionless and unblinking. They were some of the most ferocious warriors in Azazel’s ranks. On equally plush couches, eating sweetmeats, fruits and other spicy titbits were other generals of the region, all subordinates to Azazel, Prince of Sector Four, which included portions of Europe and Africa. The others around the golden table were princes of individual countries in Sector Four.
“The person who gets raped is the victim, of course,” Rabkar, a quiet but extremely blood-thirsty fellow replied.
“Any other answers?” Azazel asked, looking around the room with a mischievous smile on his face. The others simply stared back and waited. It was one of those moments where one had to be patient to allow Azazel ‘school’ them, as he liked to do – which was fair because Azazel was well and truly cunning.
“Ok, Rabkar is right. The person who gets raped, in that scenario, is the victim.” He paused for effect before going on, “However, to inflict damage on another, you must have been damaged in some way. The rapist has been broken in some way, the abuser has been abused, the criminal has been starved, deprived, of something – and it goes on and on. You must always understand that in order to damage humanity, which is our delight and our response to the One who calls himself God, the emphasis must be to create damage that causes more damage, to spawn destructive systems that spawn destructive systems…
If you can destroy an individual, warp him and mess him up, that is good. If you can destroy a community, that is even better. If you can destroy a family, that is absolutely fantastic – because families replicate, they breed, they multiply, they become more and more, and if you have an infected seed, a rotten union, a dysfunctional home, that, my comrades, quickly becomes the breeding ground for a broken society. It’s a game of Dominoes - “
“Though one can say the hole in your argument is that no one damaged our High Prince!”, Ekans cut in. “He was the anointed Cherub that covered, dressed in the brightest garbs and covered by Kabod almost like no other”.
The effect of his words on the room was almost tangible; the mention of Kabod always had that effect among their ranks. Kabod could evoke feelings of pain, sadness, loneliness...but this time, it seemed to evoke none of these in Azazel. The smile never left the lips of the master Strategist, but if you could see clearly or looked very closely at those malevolent dead eyes, you would see they were not touched by the smile that had curved his lips. Still smiling, he leaned back and raised the goblet to his lips to drink.
Then he was moving.
Like all high chiefs, Azazel was not just a master of wit and words; he was also a master of warfare. In a blinding move that was a blur, he crossed the space between his couch and that of Ekans the Seducer, drawing his sword in one quick move and with speed that could hardly be followed by the eyes. There was no time for Ekans to draw his sword to block the attack, but millennia of combat had also sharpened the Seducer’s reflexes and without missing a beat, his dagger appeared in his hands with a speed that almost matched the blurry motion of Azazel’s sword as it cut through the air, held in sturdy arms. And then, just when his dagger would block the sword, Ekans had gasped as sharp bolts of pain erupted from both sides of his lower torso - and then Azazel was catching the blade of his sword that he had let go of in midair with his teeth, his own twin daggers firmly plunged into Ekans’ sides with both hands. His earlier cut with his sword had been a feint.
“The next time you cut into me when I speak, I will cut, literally, into you, dear Ekans”, he said without uttering a word, but all present could hear him - and in the midst of it all, the horrifying smile never left his face. Then he yanked out the daggers with a cruel twist of his hands that flung a writhing Ekans to the floor. Fallen angels do not bleed, but they could hurt like hell. A look that was a combination of pain, anger and embarrassment twisted Ekans face as he lay gasping on the floor before the other generals. The pain would pass and so would the moment, but the murderous intent that laced his heart would be there forever. One day, he thought to himself, I would have my revenge - and yet, he knew that Azazel would know that such a thought would have crossed his mind, and master Strategist that he was, he would lay plans that were a million steps ahead. In time, the opportunity would present itself, but for now, he would watch. For now, he would wait.
“As I was saying before the, er, intermission,” Azazel continued casually, sheathing his sword and walking towards his couch, “damage begets damage. Our High Prince was damaged by the one he loved more than any other, the EL Himself. Our Enemy. Yes, he had kabod almost like no other, but when the brilliance of the EL began to lead the EL into dark and ignorant pathways, then our righteous prince, the Morning Star had the duty of shining in the darkness - because of his great love for the EL and for light. And now that our Prince suffered damage, it is only righteous and just that he metes out damage to the very one that caused damage and also, to the expression of the madness of the EL Himself:
Man.” He finished.
The smile shimmered on his face as a look of confusion temporarily distorted his features, his mind going back to a distant conversation he had had with his Prince, their Morning Star, who, on that occasion, had a face that reflected the same confusion that now shrouded Azazel’s face, a confusion that had turned the clear voice of the Morning Star, their now-fallen morning star, into a shaky croak as he paced the room with Azazel and asked in incredulity, “But Azazel, what exactly is man that EL is so mindful of him? Tell me, brother, what is man that He, EL, the great one, continually goes to him? When did divinity begin to find delight in sand...in dirt?” he had spat the last word with disdain.
Then the smile returned in full to Azazel’s face again and he sat down and looked around at the room full of generals.
“Okay, enough of the drama. Let us go over the work that each of you great ones is executing in and around the Earth. The take away from my little speech is damage begets damage, hurt people will hurt people, abused people will abuse people and broken people will break people!”
He could see in the eyes of some that there were sympathetic feelings for Ekans who was now seated, though one could see that he was still experiencing some discomfort as his wounds, as well as his broken ego, slowly healed. Fear is better than love, Azazel thought to himself and made a mental note about how the day’s meeting would end.
When he bade the generals farewell, he would throw Ekans through the windows of the castle room, right through the glass, knowing Ekans would right himself before he hit the ground - but the additional wounds and suddenness of the act would send a clear message to the other generals:
If you dared to insult Azazel or even thought about some form of harm, then expect sudden pain and damage, his favourite word, again, and again...and again.
Michael sat quietly on the bed that was in a corner of the hotel room, naked except for a pair of boxer shorts. There was barely any light in the room, with little illumination coming from the light in the bathroom that was adjacent to the bedroom, spilling its soft glow through a door that was ajar. The darkness in the room felt oppressive; there seemed to be an additional shade of darkness and heaviness that shrouded the room, a darkness that went beyond a lack of light. At some level, he could sense the darkness, but what he could translate this to be was his depression. Linda was gone, Hilda was gone….forever - and his only comfort was in deriving pleasure from the bosom and body of a woman that was another man’s wife. God, he thought to himself, how had it come to this?
The sound of the shower from the bathroom pattered to an end, and then there was temporary silence which was followed by the soft padding sounds of wet feet on the shiny tiled floor of the bathroom. There was another moment of silence and he could almost sense a pause as his companion stood just inside the door of the bathroom, almost hesitant to step into the room. Then she walked into the room in full view of Michael.
(To be Continued)
By J.C. Nova. Enjoyed this post? Like and SHARE!