The House of Asmodeus: A Trial by Fire Chapter 10

“No beast is more savage than man when possessed with power answerable to his rage.” – Plutarch

Asmodeus wanders through his capital city, he can’t bring himself to go back to his palace. He needs some time alone to think, he needs a place to rage against his life. And his older sister, Alice. Who else could A’rock have been talking about? 

A more pressing question, how is everyone going to react after I never told them about my sister?

For one, she was already in college, around twenty when her and Asmodeus’s… Clayton’s parents died. He was a late child, and she had no idea how to raise a little kid she saw so little of. Even before she left overseas for college she did her best to be out of the house. 

It’s… she didn’t not care about me, she was just always so much smarter than everyone else, book smarts. She didn’t need their father’s competitiveness and alternate method to raising kids, she got away. 

Who could blame her for not coming back? She got away to the school of her dreams, why would she come back… before she died.

Or apparently more like disappeared.

Asmodeus walks past crowds of daemons that pay him no notice. They may all know the name Asmodeus, but its a different thing to know a face that isn’t televised.

Asmodeus eventually realizes that he’s coming up on Rediac’s restaurant, his friend who specializes in human food. 

Maybe he won’t mind letting me hang out.

Rediac’s a green incubus, and the leader of the Circle of Lust’s very own mafia, the Radians, named after a lost god of the cosmos. 

Rediac likes to keep up an innocent image by running this restaurant, plus, the food’s pretty good. Rediac is opening up shop when he sees the King of Lust walking by. He knows not to point him out in public, so he calls him by his human name, one of the few outside the palace who know it.

“Good morning to you, Clay,” and when he draws Asmodeus’s attention, he sees the dreary look in the King’s eyes. “Whoa, you look like you just came down from the worst of hangovers.”

Asmodeus stops, and starts scratching his head. Is this is really the time to be talking to Rediac? I would bet the loves of my life would be pretty peeved if I told him before them, though… Rediac is good for secrets, and this one isn’t going to hurt him. 

“Honestly, it’s a lot worse than that.”

“Need a drink?” Rediac asks him as he finishes unlocking the restaurant, holding the door open as an invitation for the King.

Asmodeus purses his eyebrows in confusion at the offer of a drink. “I thought you said I look hungover?”

“Yeah, that you look it, not that you are,” Rediac jokes, “yet.” 

Rediac is truly the friend in high school that I never had. The one who did all the illegal stuff and would get you in trouble, but never in as much trouble as he would get into. 

He walks through Rediac’s door, reminding him at the same time, “You know I can’t get drunk.”

Rediac shakes his head, assuring the King, “You know that I won’t stop trying until I find something.” It takes powerful alcohol’s to affect daemons, some that would kill a human, but a Demon King can drink even more. 

On the day they met, Asmodeus drank Rediac under the table, and was still cold sober. Rediac swore after that day that he would find some way to see the King plastered.

As Rediac readies his next attempt behind the restaurant’s bar, Asmodeus takes a seat. 

When he stays silent, Rediac asks him, “Hey, don’t tell me you don’t know how this goes,” and he turns around to plant a shot glass in front of him, “I’m next best thing to a therapist, and I can’t pretend to listen if you don’t talk.”

Rediac is pretty good at making Asmodeus laugh, but even today he barely chuckles. Is this really something I can talk about? I haven’t told anyone about my sister, not even Asmodea or Noella. I mean, Lolara met her a few times when we were small, so she knows but never asked about her. 

I’m not the healthiest of persons am I? Asmodeus realizes.
He only feels guilty about not sharing with his family how his childhood was. Even more so that he wants to tell the bartender in front of him more than them. 

They wouldn’t judge me, not that there’s much reason to with the story of his sister, but I don’t know, I still get this ill feeling in my chest. Hell, I still worry that they judge me for having this big web of relationships between us, as they didn’t whole-heartedly jump into it. I don’t give them enough credit.

“I can see that you’re thinking about it, come on,” Rediac presses him, maintaining that sly smile of his, “tell your friend, Reddie, he’ll understand.” Asmodeus actually laughs at that one. 

“You really want to know?” Asmodeus asks him. Rediac’s smile only gets more funny as he nods his head. “Alright,” Asmodeus says, with a big sigh beforehand. He pauses right before he starts, as Rediac is waiting at the edge of his seat, gesturing him to go on. “My sister who i thought was dead is actually alive.”

Rediac’s smile freezes in that way smiles do when people don’t want to smile anymore. “You know,” he starts, “I was really expecting lady troubles, but this,” he says as he pulls over his own drink, “is something we both need to drink to.”

As he pours Asmodeus’s drink, the two can’t help but agree. 

They both take a shot, and Asmodeus’s lips pucker up with the taste, but Rediac shakes his head over the feeling. “Nothing?” Rediac questions, and Asmodeus only shakes his head. “One of these days I’ll find something, but more importantly, in regards to this undead sister of yours…”

“She’s not undead, she just might not have ever actually died.”

“I know, I know, I’m kidding but… I don’t know, how was your relationship with her, before she, you know, didn’t die.

Asmodeus has to think about that question. “I thought it was pretty good, sure, we rarely saw each other, but she still called constantly just to talk to me, to see how I was doing. She was a lot older, always away for school or something, but Alice always seemed to be worried about leaving me alone with my father.”

“Was he like, abusive?” 

“Not in a physical or sexual way, he wasn’t a cretin,” Asmodeus assures him, knowing exactly what Rediac was thinking. “He was just always trying to make something different out of his children.”

Rediac makes a look of recognition. “I can imagine that father, I’ve seen a lot like him.”

Not that he didn’t believe him, but the idea made Asmodeus’s frown deepen. “Alice couldn’t stand that he wanted her to be a certain way, and she worried about him doing the same to me. He and my mom died before he got the chance I guess.

Rediac shakes his head, shocked and wondering, “What did she do then? How did she not come home to get you? Sounds like a pretty shitty sister who just abandons her younger brother, right after your parents die!”

Hey watch it!” Asmodeus snaps at him, “I don’t blame her for not coming home, it wasn’t her home to begin with. And she had two years left in college,” he tries to argue, but doesn’t convince Rediac, “didn’t make sense to leave.” 

Did it make sense to leave? 

Now that he’s older, Asmodeus isn’t so sure. He shakes his head. “Anyway, Alice figured she’d come get me when she was done. I lived in the foster home until I was a teenager and moved back into my home.”

“What happened to coming back for you?”

“I dunno, one day my foster parents told that she had disappeared. I later learned that she had died, they just didn’t know how to tell me. Some robbery and murder near her campus. I never questioned it, never thought to look for her.” 

Rediac sees the memory flash through Asmodeus’s eyes, the idea that this pain was for nothing seems almost insulting.

Not to mention that Rediac can see the guilt building in Asmodeus too. “Well kid, how old were you, ten? At the most? What the hell were you gonna do?”

“What about when I became the Demon King of Lust?” Asmodeus attacks back. “I’ve had a year to use my power to look for her and never did, and now this A’rock guy has her? I don’t see how this messed up situation isn’t my responsibility.”

Asmodeus,” Rediac calls him, rarely using his daemon name, but it seems necessary to level with him here. “There is a fine line between blaming yourself and taking responsibility, that I would know, I never did either. How do you even know that A’rock was talking about your sister? Last time I check, Alice isn’t an uncommon name in the human world.”

How does he know that? Asmodeus wonders. 

For him, the real tell are the dreams he’s been having. Usually they’ve been memories, but then there was one of a woman and child, one that wasn’t his. “Recently, I had a nightmare about a woman being chased with her child down a dark hallway, and then I heard a man yelling and a girl screaming. The male voice, now that I think about it, sounded familiar, and the woman must have been Alice.”

“Then little girl was probably your niece,” Rediac tells him, blowing the King’s mind. 

To think my sister had a kid and I missed it.

 Rediac can see it written all over his face and by his hands reaching towards his face. Rediac needs to warn him though, “Asmodeus, daemons don’t usually have nightmares, just visions and memories. If that truly was your sister, you were having a vision through your blood bond with her. That’s how you were able to see what was happening to her.”

“Goddamnit!” Asmodeus curses, slamming his fists on the table. Rediac anticipated it, and already caught the drinks. “Now I have a niece and my sister to save? I feel powerless. I don’t know where they are, or how to find them. What kind of King am I, if I can’t protect my own family?!”

“Listen kid, obviously you have some frustrations that you need to let out,” Rediac says, pressing his hand towards his chest, leveling with him. “Listen to your pal, Reddie here, go to the fight club going on tonight. You can always find some criminal pissants there who deserve a good beating, the reigning champ I hear beats his girlfriends and his kids, imagine its your dad. That’s what I would do.” 

Asmodeus remembers, I usually judges what I should by doing the opposite of what Rediac would do.

But not this time. 

“You know what,” Asmodeus tells him, “I think that’s most helpful advice you’ve ever given me.”

Rediac shrugs, “I have my moments.”

*****

The Reavers are practically shell shocked. How could the Demon King of Lust have a sister and no one knew about her? They thought that Asmodeus was an open book compared to all the secrets that the last King had, but maybe they had wrongly underestimated Asmodeus.

“Well, what do we now?” Cavill asks the group. He seems the least fazed, he’s had so little experience with Asmodeus to think that a sister was such a surprised. “Come on, between the five of us, surely we can figure out where one guy might go.”

“This isn’t just some guy, Cavill,” Dotor points out, “we need to find him, immediately.”

“Agreed, but we should inform the other Reavers, and Noella. Not only would they be a real help in finding him, but they should know he’s returned safely… at least physically.” Asmodea is a voice of reason, which in itself makes Zazriel a bit jittery as they stand around. 

“Agreed, I’ll inform the rest!” Cavill wants that job almost too much. Everyone stares at him in disapproval. “What help would I be in a witch hunt for a guy I flirted with once?” That logic is hard to argue, but Cavill really is not earning his title of Passion right now.

“Alright, Asmodea and Zazriel, search the city for any spots he regularly visits. Azale and I will search the palace in case he is running around close by. Cavill will get the others to help search. We need to find him to figure out what’s happening, there’s still the other Demon Kings who need to be informed before the day is over. That’s the only way we can help our liege rejoin his sister. Now go!” 

Dotor established the plan and they were off. 

Zazriel knew just where to look. I remember the first date we went to when they accepted me into our poly, Rediac’s restaurant. They’re still good friends. If Asmodeus went anywhere to calm down it would be the place most like his old home.

Zazriel doesn’t waste much more time, taking The Chariot from its place on her arm. It takes seconds for it to make a portal for her to jump through.

And in a flash of light she’s there, no huff, no fuss, no traveling between worlds or anything, at least not when its just to another place in the city.

Zazriel lands right in front of the restaurant as he’s drinking alone, before noon. She knows, He didn’t start that way.

He sees her coming and can already guess as to what she wants. There are few who Rediac would sell Asmodeus out too, Zazriel is one of them.

“He came by a while ago, seemed more full of anger and guilt than I ever thought possible in such a nice demon. He looked like he wanted something to hit, so I pointed him in the direction of a fight club.”

“What’s wrong with you?” Zazriel snaps hearing that. It didn’t feel rhetorical but like an actual question.

“What? Who am I to resist what the Demon King so clearly needs an outlet? It’s not like there’s any demon here who could realistically hurt him.”

“It’s not about him getting hurt, it’s about Asmodeus hurting someone else, and regretting it. Where’s the fight club?”

He tells her, but not knowing where it is, teleporting against isn’t much of an option. Time is not my ally, so speed must be. 

*****

It doesn’t take long for Zazriel to find the fight club, it turns out to be the same one she’s tried to go to with Asmodea. This… this bodes poorly for my taste in partners.

Upon entering, it’s filled with the sounds and smells of daemons cheering, hollering, fighting in the stands… and fucking. If mortals were to give a guess of what the Circle of Sin looks like, this is probably the closest thing. Zazriel literally walks past a duo of incubi double teaming a succubus just moaning in ecstasy. 

It’s so… dirty, and open, and random, and… why Asmodea likes it here. 

Zazriel walks into the arena where the daemons in the stands are going wild over the fight. Daemons have begun cheering even louder, and like outside, are engaging in violent and sexual acts with each other. While one can say that there are certainly more deaths inside the ring than in the stands, there are certainly far more injuries.

Zazriel makes her way through the crowd to look for Asmodeus, but the worst of her fears have already happened. Asmodeus’s match with another demon is already starting. 

Asmodeus really needed to hit something, and this ring’s champion is there at the wrong place, at the wrong time. 

The incubus comes at Asmodeus in a rush, expecting the small-framed Asmodeus to be weak in power and crumble like a snowflake. Asmodeus had sucked in his demonic appendages so that no one knew he was a black daemon, let alone the Demon King of their Circle. Not many would want to get in the ring if they knew what kind of daemon he was.

And they would have had good reason too, as Asmodeus is quick and violent, rushing within the incubus’s arm length and grabbing his opponent’s neck, one handed.

“This is gonna hurt real bad for you, but I’ve heard you deserve it.” 

Asmodeus then proceeds to just beat the tar out of the daemon desperately trying to get out of Asmodeus’s death grip. Asmodeus is just barely restraining himself from doing a one punch of death, savoring the act of reducing this man to smear on his fist. 

It doesn’t take long for the crowd to realize that this fight is something else, and eventually becomes quiet.

Asmodeus is about to bring down one a fist that would end his opponent’s life, which is allowed.

“Asmodeus, don’t! This isn’t you! You don’t just kill anyone!” a familiar voice screams out.

Asmodeus swings his head around to see Zazriel, with a face of terror from what she’s seeing. He lets the daemon slump to the ground to end the match. Daemons come to remove him from the cage as she runs up to wrap her arms around him. 

“Thank Lucifer, you almost killed a daemon in cold blood.” She loosens her grip and brings her hands to his cheeks, telling him, “That’s not you, this isn’t you, my love.”

“I’m…. sorry.”  Asmodeus is ashamed to have let her see him so murderous.

“Lets just go, hurry before someone recognizes who you are.” They run to the hall between the outside concessions and the arena seats. They simply embrace each other. 

Zazriel holds his head in her hands as he just sinks his head into the crook of her neck. “It’s okay, we’re alone now, we don’t have to talk. Let’s just stay here for awhile.”

“No, you deserve to know what is going on with me.” 

He fills in sweet Zazriel on what he and Rediac talked about, minus the drinking.

“Oh my, you must be worried beyond belief, and to have been alone for so long without a family. I feel so sorry, my love.” 

“Don’t be.” Asmodeus gives Zazriel a quick peck on the lips to assure her he’s feeling better now, about his sister and certainly his dreary childhood. He moves to pull back but she leans in for another, more passionate kiss. 

It’s been too long since I’ve been alone with anyone, she thinks to herself before she stops thinking at all. 

It’s as if the arena around them affects them as they would affect mortals. Any other time, Zazriel and Asmodeus both would be fighting the urge, but the energies here just circulate, and they’re with someone they trust.

As soon as he puts her down, she feels his hands wrap around her body. At the same time, she’s reaching to feel every part of him. 

This… this is insane, she thinks to herself as she sits up so he can undo the strings in the back. 

I think I get it now, Asmodea, you thrive off this energy, this fervor. It digs its way under your skin and lets you loose control. 

Zazriel gives herself up to it, and works to make Asmodeus do the same.

He’s already shirtless from his fight so she runs her hands along his chest, eventually bringing them down to his pants. She runs one finger along the center of his chest, giving him goosebumps. 

Having undone her dress, he opens it down from the back, leaving her tits exposed. Before he even touches them, Zazriel moves from his neck and kisses back up to his lips. “Do you feel it too? This place? It’s like your pheromones, it’s like a drug and I finally share it with you.”

“Feel?” he asks at first, not even recognizing it until she has him looking for it. She’s kissing his neck, dragging him down under the water. “I think so.

“I want you to know,” she says. 

“Your wish is my command.” 

Asmodeus goes under with her, falling on top of her. Pulling up the bottom of her dress. 

He enters her in one slow, fluid motion. He keeps a slower pace with Zazriel, but neither can really tell. It’s like their own little world, together floating through space, slowly dissolving into each other as one.

There’s the pleasure sure, but there’s everything underneath. Asmodeus’s pain, his guilt, and Zazriel’s fear, her anxiety. They come together to relieve themselves of their feelings. 

Zazriel’s worst emotion is the guilt at judging the others earlier. They must searching for the depths, and from the outside it looks barbaric, but it feels so different. 

Even when Asmodeus lets loose feelings of lust, the writhing feelings are my own.

And now you feel like two? Zazriel seems to hear Asmodeus’s thoughts in her own mind, and his in hers.

Yes, she tells him.

Is this what you all feel? he asks her. When I just let loose the pheromones, the feelings of our Sin?

Yes and no, we’re never joined, we’re alone in our pleasure, but… but here…

Here, I’m with you.

Yes… yes… 

Yes!

Much like the daemons Zazriel encountered before, from the outside, it looks like nothing more than sex, and hears like nothing else.

Their moans join the others in the stadium. Rising and falling with Asmodeus’s every push and pull. 

They stay joined for long time, caring little for the few people who pass by. It’s a strange unspoken rule in Lust not to linger without an invitation, but more often than not others seek others to join in.

Zazriel finishes first, wraps around Asmodeus as he soon follows her.

They hear what can only be described as thunderous applause from the ring just they lock eyes. 

“We have to come back here with Asmodea?” Zazriel asks him.

“Hell yes, this never happens the few times I went with her,” he agrees as they still hold close together.

“I think she was easing us in.”

“Fuck that.”

They stay joined even when they’re not doing anything anymore, and slowly the Sin in the air affects them a little less. 

 Zazriel smiles as she finally comes to feel how uncomfortable she is on the bench, finding it funny how Lust can blind someone so much. I’m gonna feel stiff later because of this bench, I guarantee it.

Even still, she’s laughing as she admits, “I can’t believe I attacked you here.”

As they sit up, Asmodeus takes her head to kiss her another time, their two tongues playing a dance that threatens to make them to start again. 

She brings her hand to his lips, and they find themselves laughing again. “We should stop.”

“Probably,” he admits as they hold close to each other, their foreheads pressed together. They stay in that position for little while before deciding to clean up and go back to the palace.

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