Posts Tagged ‘Hell’

“Madame Gormosy Explains Herself”….

July 12, 2017

madame-gormosy

(Madame Gormosy in the flesh…)

A little fun today, as the weather is hot and the sentiments slow…..

Very recently I was asked by a blog to ‘interview’ a character from “Devil’s Revenge”.  This proved almost impossible, as the man I wanted to interview refused to stand still.  So I called upon Madame Gormosy, also a character in this novel to speak.  She has graciously done so and gives a good accounting of what was happening.  As she is also a Demon, please take what she writes with a large grain of salt.

Lady Nyo, with sunburn today and not from the Sun.

“My name is Louise (Louis) Alphonse Margot Gormosy. As you can read, I have the delicious ability to change my sex at will. I am a Demon of Lust in the hierarchy of Hell. There are many Demons of Lust down there, but they generally are stupid devils. I, Madame Gormosy, am not. I appear in this novel at the bequest of Arch Duke of Hell, M. Abigor. He too, is a Demon of Lust, but he is not stupid. Non, he is not. He is a much respected Military Strategist and an ancient Healer. He sends legions into battle and then he tries to stop up the wounds. Of course, this is hardly the point, as all the  chiefs  in Hell have our own legions. I, Madame Gormosy, have 60,000 devils to deploy at my whim. M. Abigor has many, many more, uncountable, but his hoof is close to the Throne.

When Bess, who is trying to finish writing a book to end the conflict between M. Garrett and M. Obadiah, asked me to do this interview, I was pleasantly surprised. She later told me that the interview was mostly intended for that scoundrel, M. le Demon, his mortal name Garrett Cortelyou. I was not so pleased. I will tell you a secret. When I am in the form of M. Louis, Garrett is amiable. We two have fought battles, shared women, have caused much mischief over thousands of years, but he is unfortunately, uncomfortable when I violently shake my head and become “Louise”. Quel dommage! But he is a good soul (if Devils have souls) and we have each other’s back. Yes, and Devils have morals, of a sort.

This morning M. Garrett came in the room, nodded and listened to my request for this interview. Mon Dieu! He is a handsome man this morning! He is tall, broad shouldered, with dark hair that is too long to be fashionable. This picture of him on that blog? He is far older and much more handsome. That picture makes him look like a spoiled brat. He is a formidable man and has many conquests, but he is much older. Your readers would faint to know how much.

He refuses to wear wig and powder,  his hair is bound into a tail by a black silk ribbon. He will not wear the silk stockings either. He wears trousers and boots. He has dark eyes that snap when he is angry. I have seen the results of his temper over the centuries, and it can be impressive. But he is not a cruel devil. Non, in fact, if you must know… he is not a ‘proper’ demon at all. His mother was mortal and his father? Well, only M. Abigor knows for sure who his father is, and he is not telling. But M. Garrett’s father must be a very important person in Hell and History, because he is treated almost like a son by M. Abigor. And that status for a devil, is a much desired one. M. Abigor is known for his own temper, but this is to be expected of Devils. He can, if he so chooses, turn one to toast.

M.Garrett listened to my request for an interview, closing his eyes while I talked. He then snorted  and disappeared in a puff of smoke, leaving the scent of brimstone in the room.   I saw him walking towards the woods with a shotgun and a dog so I would believe he is out hunting this morning. He could easily make a bird fall to earth with magic, but non, he forgets sometimes his bag of tricks  most devils have. And of course, he is half human. Not a proper devil at all. So, his magic is mostly  making ale and tea appear,  levitating a chamber pot, and  appearing and disappearing at will. This last is not good for an interview. He is a tricky devil. He is also a sexy devil.

As I mentioned, I am here at the bequest of M. Abigor. I am flattered that this exalted Demon would choose me, Madame Gormosy, to appear in this story. Bess (the author) might think she is controlling these events, but she is naïve. She is mortal, and mortals can’t see much beyond their noses.

I was brought into this novel to give instruction to Bess. As a mortal woman of the 21st century, she doesn’t have the  knowledge how to relate to M. Garrett or really any other Demon. She is to be the consort of M. Garrett, and avec vous et moi? She is rather….stupid. All mortals are stupid compared to most devils. Except the stupid ones.

Let me tell you how this mess started. Bess, sixteen years ago started writing a story. She played around with these mortal characters, brought them to life, and then closed the book on them without finishing. I think she pinched M. Garrett’s tail. Then, in 2006, she went back to the book, but she saw  she had written a very boring novel. So, what to do? She took a number of characters, M. Garrett and M. Obadiah  (who hated each other) and stupidly made them into devils. Bon! She continued the novel. However, M. Garrett was furious that she had ‘closed the book on him’, (and dented his overarching ego) and he did not spare his temper. In fact, he did something that is not what a ‘civilized’ man would do. Of course he is half demon so that would account for his bad manners. Bess fell in love with this devil (who could withstand his charms?) and the story took off. It was not a straight love story, though, of course not with demons around. M. Obadiah, from the previous novel, made his appearance and the battle between the two men started all over again. M. Obadiah’s offense was intolerable. He abused Bess in the vilest way, but this was just to get at M. Garrett. Those two are like bulls fighting over the same pasture and heifers. Mon Dieu!

I was commanded by M. Abigor, who has powers over all of us….Bess included, though she doesn’t know it yet, to tutor her in deportment. Bess has had the standard education of a modern woman, but she knows nothing about the great French salons, the intellectuals and wits there, she has no idea of the power the Underworld has over mortal dealings. True, she knows of the power of the Church, but she knows much of nothing. Since M. Garrett has declared her to be his consort, she must now learn how to deport herself. She doesn’t know all the characters (mostly demons) she is interacting with, but soon, IF I can get her up to snuff…she will have tea with M. Abigor. By then, perhaps this woman (who is not a young, spring chicken) will not disgrace us all. Or become toast.

I must say this: What M. Garrett is focusing on, this great adventure to discover his father, his detour into Celtic history, is just a ruse by those more powerful than he. They are called “The Others” and they have been around since the beginning of time. They are more than Demons, they are Immortals. Some of them come from the Nephilim and some from cultures that have passed out of history. But they are the Untouchables above us.

I, Madame Gormosy, think these “Gods” are playing with us all, but we have our tasks here on Earth and in Hell. So, the fight continues between these two bulls with Bess the mortal woman the prize. I just don’t understand it, for Bess is no Helen of Troy. She is nice enough but her ignorance of life and history gets in the way. And, she can appear as a slob. I have come to her rooms in the morning and I see her sitting with her elbows on the table, in dishabille, a mob cap almost over her eyes. Mon Dieu! What Devil (or man) can tolerate that in the morning? But M. Garrett must be besotted because he just smiles at me. And of course, Bess doesn’t have a clue as to who is pulling the strings of life.”

Your faithful (as far as Demons go…) Servant,

Louise Gormosy

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2016

 

 

 

 

“Devil’s Revenge”, Chapter 35

July 5, 2013

The-Morrigan-1499_l_454551dc7075ef7b

I know this drives readers crazy, and probably away, but I’m jumping around here as I proof this book. This will be the first introduction I believe, on the blog, of Madame Gormosy, the Demon of Lust from Hell. She is a transgender devil apparently, changing from Monsieur to Madame at will, though she really perfers her shape as Madame. She plays faro and cheats, but she is also a tender devil.

Garrett has been advised by Lord Abigor and Lord Aamon, two Arch Dukes of Hell, to travel back in time to gather his forces for this upcoming battle with Obadiah and his legions of Hell.

Lady Nyo

DEVIL’S REVENGE

Chapter 35

“So, M. Demon”, Madame Gormosy raised her head from her cards and addressed Garrett across the table. “Tell us a bit of who declared for your side. Mon Dieu! This house was so full of those Devils that day! They have left soot marks on the walls and some dents in the floors.”

Madame Gormosy was having her fun. I am assured by the Demon nothing of the sort has happened downstairs. However, it is a couple of days before I was allowed outside of this room, and perhaps there was a kernel of truth in Madame’s comments.

The Demon looked up from his hand. He was losing, but that was because Madame had subtle tricks with the cards. She cheats. Faro was her game and she was hard to beat at cards. Garrett has not caught on yet, but he will. His pile of coin was lessening and Madame’s was growing. My old trick of launching my shoe to the side of Madame and peering at her cards was not working today, for she was not indulging my trickery. That was tolerated only when we are alone. I am not winning a coin here.

Garrett looked up at her and thought a minute. “Almost enough for my side of the board.” He referred to the impending warfare as the Chess Game From Hell.

“Ah! And who are these Demons that have come to your side?” Madame coyly kept her eyes on her cards.

Garrett uttered a low curse, and threw his hand on the table. He was a poor loser at cards, and not gracious at all.

“Madame”, he said sharply. “Will you indulge me and allow me some time with this woman?” He shifted his eyes and Madame smiled slyly.

“Of course, Monsieur le Demon. I have other work to attend.” Madame got up and left the room gracefully, my Demon bowing her out the door.

I put my cards down, suspicious of his behavior. “Were you losing that much money this morning?” I know he hates faro, and isn’t the card sharp Madame is to best her.

He turned from the door, his expression hard to read. “We have things to discuss Bess this morning. You can play with Madame later.”

He moved to his chair across from our tea table. “I have talked to Abigor. He agrees with my plans.” He sat there, not looking at me, and I could see he is struggling with something he had to say.

“And if they include me, would you at least tell me my part?” I saw him hesitate.

“These dreams you have, Bess. Abigor thinks they are important.”

Ah! So Abigor, an Arch Duke of Hell thought them important, never mind my sleep was wracked with images that frighten me.

“Aamon has bound me to him. I have promised to follow his counsel and visit the otherworld. You’re going with me.” He looked at me, and I could see from his eyes that he would not brook an argument. I remembered his handling of the whip a few days ago.

“Then tell me what this ‘otherworld’ is, Garrett. At least allow me the favor of this.”

“You know the dreams of the Morrigen and Cernunnos? They are not idle events. They speak to a kinship that I have known for a while and have avoided for various reasons.”

At least this is a start! It gave some shape and comfort to what happened here and some answers to his origin.

“But this otherworld you speak of. What is it exactly? Is it like Hell?”

“No, it actually would be something you would have studied perhaps. Let’s call it the Mystic Isles for the moment.” He looks at the floor, deep in thought.

“Somewhere in Scotland?” I think of a previous dream, that first one of Culloden.

“Close. But more distant, too.”

Ah! He’s into games this morning. But I’m not following.

“Avalon?” He smiles, he is humoring me.

“Avalon is only a small part of it all. The two worlds, the present and the otherworld have portals. Your visits from Morrigen and Aine had meaning to me but until I discussed them with Abigor and Aamon, I didn’t know how important they were.”

He sucked on a thumb and spit out a piece of a nail. “I am to seek support and forces from among my own kin. Obadiah has his forces from Hell, as do I have, but I also have the magic of this particular otherworld to plunder.”

He finally turned to me and looked at me closely. “Abigor thinks you essential to this. The Morrigen is going through you to reach me.” He pauses and scowls. “As is Cernunnos.”

It seemed to me both Cernunnos and the Morrigen had no qualms in how they reached him. If I was a vessel, the price I paid was a costly one.
“Whatever kinship I have with these others, I will have to claim it soon. That is why we will leave in a matter of days. You, as my consort among demons, will have the same position among these others.”

Ah! I’m beginning to see a pattern here.

“Tell me, Demon, what actually will you be doing in this otherworld you speak?”

“It grows near to the Beltaine. The Great Marriage between the Horned One and the Mother draws nigh. The fertility rites will be attended by us. You and I will be part of the consecration and you will be confirmed as my consort. That is only a part of the work. I will be conversing with others there as to the merits of my case with Obadiah.”

“And what does that entail, Demon?” I am all ears.

“Lots of orgies and gore. Perhaps a sacrifice or two.” He expects me to be frightened. He is not amiss in his expectations.

“Garrett, explain please. You are talking in riddles.”

“Any kinship I can claim to Cu Chulainn , as I am told I have rights, will force these spirits to come to my side. I can raise an army from my birthright.”

Good and fine. “Now tell me, Demon, what you expect of my presence?”

Garrett looked at me with a serious expression. “You, as my consort, will be expected to attend me in the ritual of the Great Marriage.”

“And what it that?” I seem to have remembered some pagan rite of spring, something to do with the fertility of the land, but whatever I once knew, it has faded.

“You know of the festival of Beltaine?” I nod my head. “A number of times a year, more than two, but is known by most at Samhain and Beltaine, the Horned God and the Goddess couple in symbolic gesture. They, by their mating, assure the fertility of the land for the halfyear to come. At this ritual, you will be initiated as my consort, and will enact the same rites.”

I look at him in confusion. “We are to get married?”

He smiles to himself, but I see that there is more to this smile than he lets on. “A very public wedding night. Shared by others.”

“What part of all this is shared by others?” This should be interesting.

“You will be instructed by women as to how to deport yourself. And we will not see each other for a number of weeks. I will have my own instruction to attend to. You will be in the good hands of women who are steeped in these mysteries. Your time there will teach you far more than mere magic.”

I feel that he is avoiding my questions, but what he has said gives me meat enough for thought. After a while he leaves me to myself, and I notice a book placed in the window sill. I had not noticed it before, nor was it one of the few that I had brought up from downstairs. The Demon must have placed it there, or perhaps Madame Gormosy. I settled at my tea table and read what I could. It was a book on the history of the Druids and in it I came across what he called “The Great Marriage”. The pages were spotted with age and water, and the printing had strange characters in its alphabet, but I read on.

It seemed the Great Marriage was a ritual more public festival among pagans than the Christian monks would wish. In our eyes, some of the parts of the rituals would be distasteful enough, but one was especially perverse. It seems that a white horse was found at Beltaine and the Horned God, I would suppose Cernunnos, would mate with this mare. She would be killed, he washed in the blood, and would eat of the raw flesh. White horses were rare, and the sacrifice of one was a significant event. Then there was a very public ritual of the mating of Cernunnos with the Goddess, and it seemed that all hell broke loose. Bonfires were set on hills, and cattle driven over the flames or between two bonfires to insure fertility. Young women and men would jump through the flames, and they would pair off and mate in the open and throughout the forest or glen. This was not frowned upon, at least by the ordinary folk, for in its superstition, it assured the coming fertility of the crops and the expected harvest. Some man with antlers representing Cernunnos would run around and mate with as many women as possible. I shivered thinking about my own encounter with Cernunnos. I could do well to avoid him again.

Madame Gormosy came back later in the evening. We would begin to pack for the trip. She recommended stout and warm clothing, and boots and woolen stockings. Since it was still not spring, I thought as we traveled, we would meet a cold and dreary landscape. If my trips to Scotland and England taught me anything, it was that the weather was awful, and I’d probably get sick. We packed what woolen clothes I had, and a stout pair of leather boots. My red woolen cloak and some shawls completed my trousseau, for what I packed was a strange assortment of wedding finery. No modest veils or satin, and the heaviest of linen chemises for my wedding night. Hah!

There was little else I could do or prepare, and went back to playing faro with Madame. She was not to come with us, and I realized that I would miss her companionship. Although Madame, and at times, Monsieur, kept me guessing, she was, as my Demon declared, all sweetness and light. That’s when I didn’t catch her trickery at cards, but she had centuries of cheating beneath her belt, and I continued to play the plucked chicken.

Ah, Madame! I will miss your smile and your wandering hands. What I face on the morrow would be much soothed by your company!

Jane Kohut-Bartels,
Copyrighted, 2009, 2013

“Devil’s Revenge”, Chapter 32

June 13, 2013
"European Eagle Owl", janekohut-bartels, 2003, watercolor

“European Eagle Owl”, janekohut-bartels, 2003, watercolor

I am jumping around here, and beg the patience of readers. There is a particular reason I post this chapter. For friends who are writers and for a discussion.

Lady Nyo

DEVIL’S REVENGE, Chapter 32

When I came from the other room, Madame was sitting in the window, waving her fan slowly. Looking outside at the gray winter landscape, she seemed lost in thought. I could see her aged and transparent skin reflected in the cast of light.

Of course! Madame is old, she is pre-history, and I forget her age. She is such a fountain of knowledge and sometimes delightful. I was embarrassed at Garrett hissing at her, but then again, what do I know about manners between devils?

“Thank you, Madame! M. Demon must not be thinking clearly now because of his guests downstairs.” I came into the room, shaking out my petticoats and try to regain some steadiness in my walk.

“You must remember he is only part mortal and the other part of him does not suffer as mortals do. Non, ma petite. It is not because of his thinking. It is because he is cruel as all men are. And, yes, thoughtless.”

I wonder if Madame includes herself in this category, for I knew her to be also a man. I decide to be bold and ask a question.

“Madame? I know you are a shape-shifter. What would possess you to appear so? In my experience, men are covetous of their identity and their…..ah…equipment.”

“Mon Dieu! You are a saucy one! But since you ask, I will tell. We have a moment before M. Abigor appears at the door.” She considered her words before proceeding.

“There are many Demons of Lust and Love in Hell. But I am the only Demon to want to do such. Ah! Men die and go to Hell, and few have learned much on Earth. There is great seduction in women! Their sex developed the art, yet they are called ‘the weaker sex.’ They use their wiles and within a short time, have all men in thrall. You are weaker in strength, but you are stronger in the head.”

Madame snaps her fan closed and points at her head with it. I laugh, as much as my tight corset allows.

“But! We have short time, now. I must talk to you about M. Abigor. You must be on your guard, ma petite! Monsieur is a wily one. You don’t become an Arch Duke of Hell for your kindness. Non, M. Abigor is to be feared! Do not put too much faith in his charms. M. Abigor is known for his lust for mortal women. Your M. Demon was right to charm up your sex, mais tres cruelle!”

Cruel indeed, Madame! I could not agree more. Especially how tea goes through me.

“Fait Attention! M. Abigor’s knowledge is vast. He is known to be an intellectual in Hell. There are many stupid devils, you know.”

Madame rolled her eyes. “M. Abigor has many interests, cheri. Philosophy, music, the dance, politics, especially the French culture. Ah! I know what you must talk with him! He was un habitant of the salons of France! Ah! He was an intimate of Mme. Du Deffand et Mme.Necker, et Mme. Geoffrin, just a few! M. Abigor knew M. Grimm, Sainte-Beuve, Voltaire, Diedrot, so many illustrious men and women! Talk to him about the salons, cheri. Entertain him with philosophy.”

Ah, Madame Gomosy, I thought to myself. If only I could. My memory and knowledge of such a time and place was miniscule. But I would try. At least we could talk of music. Now, here I was competent. Or so I hoped.

“Mais…M. Abigor is a genius, ma cheri. But he leaves the trail of a serpent! When you see on his forehead the reflection of a ray from Plato, do not trust it. Look well, there is always the foot of a satyr beneath.”

Madame’s words made me shiver, though the room was warm. Well, what should I expect? I was dealing with devils!

“Now, when M. Abigor knocks, I will answer and present him, and you stand and curtsey your best. I will leave you both and then will return when he leaves. Ah! Be charming, my young friend. Your fate depends upon it!”

I wondered if we have time for a round of faro, just to calm my nerves, when we hear a strong knock on the door. Madame rose from her chair, blew me a kiss, and glided to the door. She opened it, and gave a deep curtsey to M. Abigor, who entered the room.

I rose as gracefully as my trembling legs allowed, and curtsied. Monsieur Abigor looked at me for a second, and bowed. Madame pasted out of the room and left me alone with my visitor.

“M. Abigor. It is delightful to see you today.” My voice sounded strange to my ears. Dancing with Devils! I looked at him as boldly as I dared and saw a tall and elegant man before me. He certainly had a presence about him. He was dressed in a black coat, with a dark wine colored waistcoat, embroidered in gold. Black breeches and hose, and a fine piece of plain linen at his throat completed his appearance. His grey hair, probably a wig, was powdered and curled.

I dared a glance into his face, and his eyes! They were blank, like the eyes of a dead dog! No reflection, dull like the light had faded. My fear rose in my throat. As though reading my thoughts, a small smile crept across his face. I motioned for him to sit in the chair across from me. Madame had moved the tea table between us, facing the chairs to each other. M. Abigor sat, and flipped out the tails of his coat behind him. I wondered if he had a tail. Just as the thought crossed my mind, I realized with horror he probably had the same power as all these other demons. He could read my thoughts. My face colored.

M. Abigor’s smile broadened, and I knew he had discovered my thoughts! All I could do was to go on, however uncomfortable. He cocked his head to one side, and I thought of an owl. Of course! I remembered a picture in one of those heavy books, of this Arch Duke of Hell. He rode on a wolf, had the face of an owl, and carried a sword. Otherwise, he was human. Very human, according to the drawing in the book. M. Abigor gave a chuckle. I was not doing well.

I cleared my throat, and tried to swallow my fear. “M. Abigor, would you like a cup of tea?”

“Perhaps that would be safest, my dear.” His voice was deep and low. He smiled at me, amused by my gaffes. I rose to pour him a cup of tea, and my hands shook. “Would you like cream and sugar?” I asked over my shoulder at the console on the wall where the silver service was placed.

“I take it black.” Of course, why didn’t I think of that!

“I understand from M.Garrett you are a writer. And, a bit of a musician and dancer.”

Oh God! What did my Demon say to him? “I am hardly a writer, M. Abigor, as I have only written one book. And that I have not finished. “

I brought him his tea and tried not to rattle the cup in the saucer.

“Ah. One would think your change of….ah…circumstance…would retard your progress. Very human.” M. Abigor picked up his cup, his eyes stared over the rim, two dead pools of darkness. My stomach gave a flip and my fear made me shiver.

Yes, very human. I decided to approach the issue of ‘circumstance’ delicately. “Yes, ‘one’ might say so. I find my world exciting and confusing now.”

“It is to be expected. You are out of your element as they say. It will take time to adjust.” M. Abigor regarded me with his head cocked again. I think, again, of an owl.

“Madame tells me you knew many of the men and women in the salons of Paris.” I sip my tea, and hoped to turn the conversation. “I have little knowledge of the salons, but I am very curious as to your experience, Monsieur.”

“Ah!” Here his face visibly brightened. “The Salons! Yes, they were a lovely invention. Some good friends I made on different days of the week. Some good friends I occasionally still see.”

I think about his words and again I shiver. I managed a smile.

“Did you know Mme. d’Epinay, Monsieur?” I had read some of her writings.

“Ah! Mme. d’Epinay! I remember her well, though I don’t think I have seen her sweet face since the 1770’s.”

Good, I thought. Then she isn’t in Hell. From what I had read of her, she was a wretched but sensible woman. She suffered terribly from an early marriage to a dissolute cousin.

“But her husband, now, M. d’Epinay….I have seen him around some.” M. Abigor’s grin reminded me of a wolf.

“Madame d.Epinay now…how she was to be pitied! She was peaceful, and sweet and trusting. And she was a good writer, and listened to so many others as they read their works out loud to the room. A sensible and courageous woman, married to a monster.”

I thought of what I knew of the women of that century. In my own century, which I had forgotten for my surroundings, women had all the hope to do so much with their lives. It was hard for us to understand a society in which the best female intellect was given over to entertaining and living their lives through the minds of the men around them. They had little place else to wield power except in the drawing rooms. But from these rooms, such ideas! Revolution, class warfare, the liberating and the terror, these were fermented by sentiments both vain and sensual.

M.Abigor threw out names in history. Mme. de Lambert, Mme. Geoffrin, Mme. Necker are just a few he mentioned. And the men! Grimm, Diedrot, Voltaire just a few more. M. Abigor captured my interest with his fascinating tales of long dead people. I was discreet enough to curb my interest as to who was where in the universe.

“M. Garrett tells me that you dance, n’est-ce pas?” He changed the direction of his conversation so fast it took me by surprise. M. Abigor relaxed in his chair, and stretched his long legs before him. I hastened to serve him some cake.

“Thank you. I don’t usually eat sweet things, but this looks divine.” M. Abigor took a bite of his cake and his eyebrows lifted in pleasure. Ah! One happy devil from Hell!

“M. Garrett overstates my talent. It is not the courtly dances you would be familiar.” I presumed too much, for M. Abigor was as old as the Alps and knew much of the world.

“I am familiar with the Harem dance. I have known many Sultans and their harems intimately over the centuries. In fact, in my youth, I affected the guise of a harem guard.” M. Abigor looked at me, that wolf smile again gleamed out over long, white teeth.

“But I read only eunuchs were allowed in the harem.” I spoke without thought.

M. Abigor laughed, his voice rumbling deep from his chest. “One of the privileges of being a Devil, my dear, is we can appear to be anything we want. Like our Madame Gormosy, we appear as a man, and a second later, a woman.” He waved one elegant long finger in the air. I blushed from my thoughtless words.

“And we can dismiss parts of our anatomy, and gain them back at will.” M. Abigor obviously enjoyed my embarrassment; his dead eyes suddenly glittered at me!

I took a drink of my now cooled tea to cover my distress. “M. Abigor, may I warm your tea?”

“You have already warmed my heart with your blunders.” He smiled like a wolf and gave me a little bow from his chair. My embarrassment was tinged with fear. I remembered Madame Gormosy’s words of caution about his ‘charm’.

“I can see your M. Demon has great fun with you. I myself have had many mortal wives in my time. I enjoyed the naivete and companionship. M. Demon is to be applauded his choice.” He chuckled and again bowed from his seat.

I inclined my head to him, my blush now covering my neck. I was being courted by an Arch Duke of Hell!

We talked about many things and I noticed the room was darkening. It must be about dusk. I rose to light a taper from the fire, and M. Abigor rose with me, picked up a hot cinder from the fire and lit the first candle. I made an exclamation, as he was sure to burn his fingers, but M. Abigor just smiled and showed me his unscorched palm. He took my hand and placed it against his. It was warm but did not burn. Close to me, I looked up into his face, and by the light of the one candle, saw something in his eyes that frightened. It was as if his eyes opened suddenly, like the lens of a camera, and I saw scenes horrifying and I could not think!

Like a card deck being shuffled slowly and each card held out for a nanosecond viewing, I saw wars, tragedies, famines, scenes of torment down through the ages.

I saw male babies thrown in the river Nile, to be drowned at the whim and command of Pharaoh, heard their gurgling screams as they sank beneath the waters, their mothers anguish ringing out on the banks of the turgid waters.

I saw the Crusades, many cards there, with Christians riding down the ‘unbelievers’, slaughtering young girls, children, raping them and cutting their throats.

I saw and felt the tumbrels rumbling through Paris’ streets, the fall of the guillotine, the roar of the crowds, the spray of blood from that steel knife cover the crowds, and the heads tumbling into the fouled straw baskets.

I saw the results of the War to End all Wars, the men falling to the ground, spewing their guts, vomiting in the mud from the mustard gas, nerve gasses. The horror of field hospitals with severed limbs piled up like cordwood, and broken lives never to be regained.

I saw the brutality of the boyars, the Cossacks, the military riding into peasant villages and all slaughtered, the babies smothered under the fallen bodies of their mothers. I smelled the cottages burning, heard again the wailing of the women.

And then I came to the card, flipped over in slow motion, of the Holocaust. I felt the fire of the ovens, saw the mounds of gold teeth, smelled the burning flesh that swept across the countryside and I stood there, looking at my forearms, and was covered by human ash. I saw the children clubbed to death, their bodies thrown into the pits after their parents were shot and rolled into the mass grave.

I think I stopped breathing. I felt time had suspended itself. M. Abigor’s eyes closed and a tear dropped from one eye. I watched the descent of that tear as if all the answers to this madness were in that one sign of human compassion.

But of course M. Abigor was not human.

Woodenly, I pulled away and place the candlestick on the table. Turning, I stood behind my chair, my face shocked beyond expression. I could not stop my heart from pounding. I wasn’t numb for I was able to feel an overwhelming sickness, a terror with every heartbeat. There was something in the room with us, a presence more than the two of us. It felt like the Ultimate Evil. I thought I would faint. In the growing gloom of the room, M. Abigor looked intently at me, and saw my distress.

“Madame, I have most enjoyed our tea. In the next few days, I will return and take you riding. I understand you pine to go out of doors. I will be your protection from the elements.”

M. Abigor bowed, a figure of masculine elegance. He turned at the door, smiled and left the room. Within moments, Madame Gormosy entered. I still stood behind my chair, frozen, barely breathing.

“Well, Madame, you have survived this visit unscorched. Ah! You minded your manners or at least you did not insult the Devil! Bon! You live another day. Your M. Demon will be glad of it.”

Rooted to the spot, blindly I put out my hand to her, and Madame came to my side. I almost fainted and I found Madame’s arms around me, supporting me. But it was Monsieur’s arms now around me, transformed by her particular magic, and at this moment, I was grateful. I leaned on his chest, and I could hear his heart. I started to shiver violently and Monsieur picked me up and sat down in a chair. He rubbed my arm, my back and thigh. I couldn’t stop shivering, my shock so great and Monsieur cooed to me gently. Soon I was weeping into his linen.

“Ah, my poor thing. Perhaps M. Abigor let down his glamour for a minute and you saw him for the demon he is? Perhaps you looked into his eyes and were frightened? Ah! It happens with devils. We look like humans, when we want to, it is our favorite disguise, but the eye will tell all. The horrors of hell show up in these pools of darkness. It is the one piece of ourselves we can not transform. Quel dommage!”

I still shivered and Monsieur crossed over to the bed. He pulled back the bedclothes and covered me to my chin, chaffing my arms under the covers. He also rubbed my legs but decided a few hot bricks would be of service. Bringing two of them from the fireplace he placed them by my feet. In a couple of minutes, my shivering stopped. I fell into deep sleep.

I was told I was unconscious for a day, and cried out. There was little to be done, for the shock I received from the presence of M. Abigor would have to be endured. I am now told M. Abigor was pleased with my company and his tea, and this was the usual fate of dining with such devils. The next time, my mortal system would adjust, and I would not suffer such effects.

If this is to encourage me, Madame Gormosy is wide of her mark. I saw too much in M. Abigor’s eyes. No amount of immortal elegance could hide those visions of Hell.

Jane Kohut-Bartels
Copyrighted, 2009, 2013

“Devil’s Revenge”, Chapter 5, WARNING: Sexual Content, you have been warned.

May 29, 2013

This chapter comes from a book I started at the end of 2006. The characters came from my first novel (unpublished…way too long) and finishing that novel (“Heart of the Maze”) I didn’t want to end these characters. I had grown attached and this was damn stupid. So I came up with another book, first called “Another Story” then “Devil’s Revenge”. It’s a tale of magic, demons, cosmic travel and nothing like that ponderous first book. I learned a lot from writing this book, but again, too long by far. It was the first time I used time-warping in a story. And magic.

Garrett Cortelyou is a demon, well, half human and half demon. There is a whole parade of demons in this book and it took me out of my usual comfort zone in the research. Bess is a writer, who finds herself plucked out of the 21st century to 1832. Garrett can be a chauvinist and a brute, but he has a lot of energy….

Why do we write such things, and why do we create such characters? Every writer has an answer for this…I’m still trying to figure out mine.

Lady Nyo


“DEVIL’S REVENGE”
Chapter 5

I had no way of telling time or sequence or anything that relates to the passage of time. I think of my society, where we grew up around various clocks: mantel clocks, hall clocks, electric clocks in the kitchen, the battery run clocks by our bedsides, and our wristwatches. In the dimension I was visiting, or found myself, there were few clocks. No one so far wore watches. Perhaps there were pocket watches, but I saw few people and couldn’t tell.

So I didn’t know what time it was of the morning, though I saw the sun had not risen. The room was colored by the timid light creeping into dawn, a blending of gray shadows. The fire had burned low during the night, and cast no glare. There before the fireplace was the Demon. He slouched in his chair, one booted foot upon the other, staring into the embers. He smoked a white, clay pipe, something I recognized as a “Dutch pipe.” He didn’t stir from his chair as I called his name, but blowing out a mouthful of smoke, he turned his face towards the bed.

“You’re finally awake.” He grinned around the stem of his pipe, his large white teeth gleaming in the dim light of the room.

“It is too early to wake, Garrett. Aren’t you cold at the fire?” I snuggled back into my pillow.

“’Ah, an invitation to your bed this early? Would do, but there is a litter of puppies around your breast.”

I opened the covers, and there under the blankets, were his four pups. Little two month old water spaniels, three boys and the girl, the runt, Sophie, snuggled between my breasts.

“Did you do this, Demon?” I laughed, for I had no memory of putting them there. The smell of puppies this close is a bit high, like sour milk.

“The fire was low when I entered the room and you looked warm enough to comfort them.”

“Have you thought what you are going to do with them, yet?”

“I aim to keep them right here, and you, my darling woman, will be nursing them for me.”

“Ah, Garrett, had you ever thought that perhaps I might be a bit too busy to care for your dogs? I am trying to finish this novel, my friend, and perhaps it would have been nicer for you to ask me first.”

“Perhaps, yes…but it still doesn’t change the outcome.” He grinned and his eyes snapped in the firelight. “The rules of the engagement are simple. You do what I want.”

“You are such an arrogant Demon! What makes you think that I will do as you demand? Have you ever heard of free will?”

“Highly overrated and doesn’t apply here.” He continued to puff and draw on his pipe and filled the room with his horrible smoke. Brimstone I believe.

“No so.” He continues to read my thoughts at will…his idea of free will, I suppose. He packed down his ‘tobacco’ with his thumb. “It’s a nice cherry and spice blend I brought from the islands… Perhaps you would prefer a pipe of opium?”

“I have never done such a thing, thank you very much.”

He turned a half-opened eye at me, and said lazily. “Perhaps before you dismiss it, you should at least try it once.”

“And why would I do such a thing? It seems a half-death to me.”

My Demon continued to puff on his pipe, the lazy whiffs of smoke spreading across the room. When I first smelled the acrid smoke, I had thought fleetingly of the pot that I used to smoke on occasion. I thought, ‘fleetingly’, but that was enough for my demon to pick up. Suddenly, the smoke was not of tobacco, but of a sweet smelling herb I recognized though I had not smelled for years.

“You bastard demon!” I laughed at him, this conjuring trick a minor one in his bag. “Do you know how hard it is to quit that stuff? That is the last thing I need to smell this morning. Way too early!”

All this ruckus awakened the dogs in my bed. They were rolling over each other, and jumping at the pink ribbons of my mobcap. Little Sophie between my breasts grunted and stretched.

“You have awoken your dogs, Garrett, now you better find something to feed them.”

He snapped his fingers and a bowl appeared on the floor in front of the fire. I handed each one from the bed to him, and he placed them around the bowl. Whatever it was, they ate with growls and snarls, stepping over each other.

“What is it you’re feeding them?” Even my runt Sophie was not shying from the food.

“Deer meat was handy.”

Well, at least he was sensible enough not to put down a dish of milk. Those pups would be runny within an hour.

“Oh, I thought about you nursing them but your nipples would give out in a day. Though it would be amusing to see your milk spout when they started to howl.”

Oh, he was a nasty demon this morning!

“Well, I’m glad you decided on deer meat instead.” What a devil he was, to think of these ways of tormenting me. His temper was like mercury, and he took offense easily. Perhaps it was part of the demon culture, for he certainly was a touchy devil.

“You should know, you thought me up.”

“Oh, Demon, I think you have had a long life before you ever came to thought.”

“It used to be Demon Lover, and now it is ‘friend’? I think we go backwards.”

Opening the covers, I smiled at him sweetly, and decided to take my chances this morning. He was an entertaining fellow, and carefully handled, could be amusing.

He put down his pipe on the table, and moved to the bed, slipping in bedside me. He placed my head upon his shoulder as he was wont to do, and settled next to me.

“You know, Garrett, I have a lot of writing to do today. I am behind with the book and want to finish before the years out.”

“You can write when I’m through with you, on the morrow…I want to show you things today. First I want to show John Thomas between us a seashell of delights.”

He was amorous in the morning. Actually, he was usually ready for a romp any time of the day or night.

“Besides, you avoided me in Chapter 4 and I mean to make up for that.” He had a scent about him that enchanting, a combination of musk and sweat and probably brimstone.

“It’s the scent of an aroused man, who is about to release a lot of little demons from his loins.” I laughed at his clumsy wit, and blushed in his arms. “You modern women wash too much. You have forgotten the scent of sex and its purpose. It draws the bees to the honey.”

Perfume and soap was such a part of my life that I didn’t realize my body produced its own scent of desire. Since he had bedded me my thinking on this had changed. After our lovemaking, we lay in a nest scented with the smell of flowers, old flowers, ashes and wood.
.

“Lie still, my darling woman, and indulge my mood here.”

When my demon demanded a thing, it was wise for me to listen. He had a way of bending me to his will, and I was learning, slowly, that sometimes there was an innate wisdom in what he did. Sometimes.

I lay in his arms. He touched my forehead, on both temples with one hand extended. He passed his hand slowly down to my eyes, and as he did, they closed. I barely felt his hand descend to my midriff, where he stopped and pressed down hard. That is where I seemed to have fallen into a deep sleep, or at least a trance. Then, with something like a slow electrical shock, from the ends of my fingers and toes, I felt a gathering of energy, something warm and concentrating, moving down the passageway of my limbs to the center of my body, where he had pressed on my stomach. It seemed that all my nerve endings were coming alive, and centering in my stomach. My pelvis was flooded with a warmth that moved back and forth across my hip bones. An exquisite feeling of tingling took hold of my face, my breast, my entire body. Suddenly, it all rushed upwards, out of my body, like a current of many colored ribbons, opening upward and outward, bursting from my body like waves of liquid and spinning off like a million stars above me. I was lifted from all gravity and hurled through space like a ragdoll. I was transformed into pure energy, or something of that nature, for I had no words to describe what was happening to me. All I knew that it was an extreme pleasure, beyond anything I could imagine, and something that I didn’t want to stop. It dissolved my body into a stream of light, flowing through and around any obstacle, any fear. I felt like I was turned inside out, and my sex had blossomed like a giant orchid. My whole body, or what was left of it, pulsated with a spent desire. Slowly, I seem to have fallen to earth, to this bedroom, to this bed, and in the arms of a man who was lying there unconscious. I looked at him, and he was naked next to me, the bedclothes on the floor. The room was over heated, though the fire was still low. I felt a wetness on my side, and looking down, saw that he was bleeding from his left side, below his heart.

“Garrett!”, I called to him in a panic. “Wake up!. Oh my God! You are bleeding, you have injured yourself.” I shook him, trying to arouse him.

He came slowly out of his trance, for it seemed that he was as spent as I was. “I am fine. It’s just a little sacrifice for this pleasure.” He passed his hand over his small wound, and it disappeared. My face was contorted with alarm, my hands on his shoulders.

“What did you do? What happened to us?”

He smiled a weak smile and cleared his throat. “There are many things in this world and out of it. That is just one. It’s pretty spectacular, but there are even better things to come.” He burped loudly. “Right now, I’m starving, and am weakened with expending that energy.” Turning over, he said with a grin. “Pretty good, no?”

I stared up at the ceiling, too weak to sit up. “Pretty good, yes.”

I lay there, silent, thinking of what had just happened. . My body felt like velvet, with no structure or nerves. I was empty of everything, completely undone.

“But why do you bleed?”

“Bess, you ask too many questions. Just think of Adam’s rib and the creation of Eve.”

He grinned at his words, and sat upright. Snapping his fingers, a tray of breakfast appeared on the table. He put on his long, linen shirt, and sat himself heavily in a chair.

I didn’t think that I could rise from the bed, much less walk to the other chair. My body was without bones.

“Oh, forgive me. I forget. That first experience usually knocks the wind out of your sails. You’ll find ways around that.”

He pushed himself out of his chair, and helped me to sit up on the side of the bed, and led me to the chair. I sat there, not dizzy, but confused as to what had happened to me. Was this what is called Tantric sex?

“Nope,” I heard him mumble as he stuffed his mouth with bread and butter. “Far beyond that earthy delight, but we can play with it next if you want. Bit of a bore, though.” He drank a swallow from his tankard of ale, as he preferred this drink instead of my tea in the morning.

I could not imagine doing anything else that day or the next! He grinned at me, the lustful devil, and pushed some bread my way. He extended his hand across the table and looked at me tenderly, and I placed my hand in his. There was a little of that current still present in the air, and it melted my hand into his.

Ah, Devil, I thought to myself. You are a dangerous man or demon, whatever you be. I wondered, when I fell back to earth, if all the atoms fell back in place. I knew I had given something to him, far beyond my heart and sex, and it seemed to involve my trust. Perhaps that was the key to his heart.

Jane Kohut-Bartels
Copyrighted, 2008-2013


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