As they walked on into the darkness, each of them began to hear a
whisper, a voice, heard so softly as to be dismissed as their imagination. Each
one heard a different voice, whispering different things. Promises were made
to them of great riches, of great fame, all of their hearts’ desires fulfilled if
they left and went down this other tunnel or that one. But they paid no heed
to the wraiths, for this was what they were. Keeping to the path and
continuing on, they cautiously watched the side tunnels, the walls, even the
dirt beneath their feet for danger, knowing that if an attack came they would
have no warning and little, if any time to react.
For several hours they traveled in this manner, their pulses racing,
watching for an attack. Finally they glimpsed a bit of light ahead of them. As
they journeyed toward this light, they were startled to see a fire burning
brightly, but with no smoke issuing from it.
Seated at the fire facing them was the figure of what appeared to be a man.
He wore a cloak gathered closed about him, with the hood pulled up so as to
shadow his features. He sat on a flat stone, staring down at the fire in front of
“You’re late,” he growled at them, not looking up. “I expected you here
sooner.” As he raised his head to look at them, they all quickly stepped back,
drawing their swords. For his eyes glowed a fiery red within the darkness of
his hood, not from the reflection of the fire, but with a flame of their own
blazing deep inside. He smiled as he saw their reaction. “No need for those!”
he laughed. “No need at all, for I am the one you seek to aid you in your
quest, for reasons of my own that will become apparent soon enough.”
He lowered his head and gazed back into the fire. “Why do you just stand
there when you know that what I have said is true?” he asked of them.
“Because you know me, and what I am, and why I am here?” He gestured to
the large flat stones surrounding the fire. “Seat yourselves and let us discuss
our plans to recover what is ours.”

ONE BY ONE THEY sheathed their swords. Lord Robin walked over to the
seated figure, looked down at him for a moment, then slowly took a seat,
motioning for the others to do the same. They all sat down, except for Father
Westwic. “You know that I cannot seat myself with you,” he told the dark
figure. “For I have no wish to be the destruction of everything that we see.
We know each other well, Lucifer, and also what will happen if we share the
same circle.”
Father Westwic gathered his robes about him and went off a short ways,
near enough to be a part of the conversation but with enough distance from
the Dark One that no one could make a mistake and assume that they were
“And just what is it that you want from us? And how is it that Lucifer
finds himself stooping to trafficking with mere mortals and asking them for
their help?” Robin asked. “And what help could you be to us unless you are
here to return our children to us?” Lucifer’s eyes flared brightly for a moment
when Robin made the last comment, his flesh seeming to smoke as if he was
about to burst into flame.
Father Westwic walked back into the circle and stopped in front of
Lucifer. “You had nothing to do with it at all, did you?” he asked the Prince
of Darkness. “Somehow your demons have wrested control from you and
managed to cast you out of your own domain!”
He laughed, a short bit of merriment that echoed throughout the cavern.
“Cast out of Heaven, and now cast out of Hell, sitting here in a cave in the
mortal world. How far you have come, Lucifer!” Father Westwic walked
 back to his spot, shaking his head and chuckling over Lucifer’s predicament.
Robin turned his attention back to Lucifer. “Why should we help to
restore your realm to you?” he asked. “What help could we possibly be to
you? I think that we should leave you and go on by ourselves rather than risk
your treachery!”
Lucifer stood up and pulled his cloak closed about him. With one hand he
reached up and drew his hood back from where it covered his head. Briana
gasped, and Brandon’s and Andrew’s mouths dropped open in amazement as
they stared at Lucifer. For the tales of the Devil that were told around
campfires and by religions around the world always depicted him as the
image of ultimate evil, a red skinned demon with horns or an unkempt, wild,
crazed lunatic, or variations thereof.
Instead they gazed upon a figure that could only be described as beautiful.
He was fair skinned, with long blonde hair that had a slight curl to it
crowning his face. Robin laughed at the others’ reactions. “I think a little
explanation is needed, Lucifer. Sometimes I forget how much of the
information about you is intended solely for the purpose of terrifying the little
children into being good.”
Lucifer glanced over at Robin, then at the rest of the party, a smile slowly
spreading across his handsome face. “I do believe that you are right, Robin,”
he said. “Well, sit back and listen, for now you will hear the true story.” And
so he began.

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