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The Shallow Deep

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The barren landscape of ash and dust was broken up only occasionally by rock formations and craters and in various distances towards each other, massive tombs would be carved into the rocks, sealing in their guilt-ridden prisoners. It thundered within the grayish-red shimmering something that could be described as a sky, but it was not the sky by any means. They did not know if it was because he was angry and influencing the landscape, or if it was hell itself that wanted to express its menacing aura to its inhabitants. The surfaces of the obsidian rocks were smooth and sharp-edged, like flint stones. Only that one was able to recognize in the hellish rock its own mirror image. But it did not stay that way, because with the eons that passed without any sense of time in hell, the rocks’ surfaces were also used as memorials. Memorials, because the Devil enclosed and banished his adversaries into those very rocks.

They walked together past the memorials. They were brothers and their faces were as gloomy as ever, but even more so after the conversation that lay behind them. The sound of their armor clanging mingled with the deep, pained moans and growls that grated from the smooth stone surfaces into the endlessness of the underworld.

“He doesn’t have the balls to attack.” one of them grumbled, his snout curling back in contempt, revealing rows of razor sharp teeth. Annoyed by the ashrain, he shook his body to get the grey particles out of his furry body, before he continued with long strides, dull clacking sounds accompanying each step.

“Although I admit, we’ve been overdoing it with the human scum.” another argued with a hiss, sending sulky glares at his sibling as he dared to overtake him by a foot.

The slender and gruesomely deformed figure to their right grinned and snickered darkly. His long tongue flicked excitedly from one side to the other. “That isss a matter of opinion. The mortal could have followed the rulesss. I despissse those animalsss. They don’t dessserve to be tortured in any other way.”

“It’s not that he doesn’t have the balls. He won’t attack because we’re his brothers. He’s not fond of the idea of smiting his brethren.”

 With a dismissive grunt another one cut in. “That’s why we all had to fall! If he had actually fought, we would have won the war!” The dark shards of obsidian shimmered on his arms as he waved his fists and smashed with ease one of the rocks on the side of their path. He sent a swift look backwards, scanning the surroundings and checking for any unwelcoming ear - not that a lot of creatures in hell existed to oppose them. Turning back, he hurried to keep up with his brothers, the rubble ground beneath his clawy feet bouncing from his heavy weight.

“Anyway, he’s only fighting back in the means of defense.” a calmer voice muttered, obviously less enraged and more in thought.

“I’m fed up with his talk about just punishment. I want to fucking punish whoever I want, the way I want for as long as I want!” a high pitched voice viciously hissed in between them.

Shaking off the remains of rocky dust from his hand, the massive built shape narrowed his eyes at his brothers. “The time will come when I will trim his wretched white wings. I’ll pluck him like a goose…”

His long tongue dripping from venom, the other shot back enviously. “Why the hell did hisss feathersss ssstay that way while oursss are ssstunted asss if vulturesss had gone at them!?”

“Probably because he’s still Daddy's boy!” The almost wolfen looking one barked.

“Don’t sssay that to his face, or he’ll throw you to his hound.”

“Do you really think that stinking mutt scares me?!” the fur covered shape snarled, baring his teeth.

“Pha! He’s strong enough to rip you to shreds if he would let him.”

A sudden, thunderous bang silenced the others as a fierce fist broke stone as if it was made out of glass. “Let that puppet try!” he growled gravely. “I’ll gut him and decorate my armor with his teeth.”

“Brothers!” a voice filled with deliberation called to their reason, “We’ll wait for the right moment and we get ourselves back another brother... Then he will pay for what he did to us. Our fall, for how this place of his punishment has distorted us and that he has the audacity to command us and make us serve under him!”

The snapping sound from a cat ’o nine cutting the air drew their attention, and a high pitched voice barked in a menacing laughter.“We will destroy the Devil eventually. Because we have something in plenty amounts… Time.”