Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Eternal Call: Part 13

The villagers scrambled and the soldiers sprang for their weapons. The archers let loose their quivers to no avail. The demon, spewing fire as he flew, charged forward.  Its evil eyes shone bright with malice and rage as it scooped up villagers, swallowing them whole.  The village had been reduced to a flaming inferno in mere seconds.  Buildings collapsed all around them yet the soldiers fought on.  Quickly dividing into two teams, half were responsible for putting out the blaze; the others launched an aggressive attack.  Their mortal weapons were useless against the hellion but still they battled on. Wounded men were writhing on the ground, screaming in agony.  The demon delighted in their despair, drawing even more strength from the soldiers’ suffering.  When it had swallowed the very last villager, doubling in size, the creature prepared for its final assault.  Drawing from the very depths of Hell, the demon’s fire blasted out from its form, burning, melting, warping, searing.  The four captains, convinced that this would be their final campaign, knelt in the dirt, praying for the world they would soon leave behind.  Though the flames billowed high around them, cauterizing their flesh, they did not melt and they did not die.  Instead, a cooling peace enveloped them and their men.  All who had made the pact experienced the same sensation.  Their once-gushing wounds began to seal and the blisters dissolved to reveal healthy, unburned skin.  A soothing, silvery light descended from on high, illuminating the entire village.  In a flash, an entire angelic army appeared and battled the demon to its death.  Utterly spent and in sheer exhaustion, the troops watched the battle unable to fully grasp the implication of what had transpired.  With each passing minute, their wounds seemed to repair of their own accord and their bodies healed until the pain and exhaustion seemed little more than a bad dream.  In fact, they had experience so much physical relief that the men had drifted off into a deep and dreamless sleep.  The next morning, the men awoke in full repair. Had it not been for the sheer destruction of the village, combined with the carnage of dismembered, partially melted corpses, they might have assumed it had all been a very strange dream.  At the first stirring of the soldiers, a timid boy, the sole survivor from the village, sprang to work.  He drew fresh water from the well and gathered all of the remaining food for the men.  Still fearful of all he had witnessed, the boy was pleased to have work, to occupy his mind, rather than allowing the horrific scene to replay over and over again in his head.  The angelic host had left specific instructions for the boy and all through the night he feared he would forget something important. The four captains sought out the boy immediately, anxious to hear what had happened.  

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