Actions

Work Header

The Devil and I

Chapter Text

 

 

 Beth has gone. I don't know where she went... she's never run away before. Maybe I didn't give her enough treats, or perhaps I didn't pet her enough, and that's why Beth left. She's probably looking for a better home or... someone took her. People like dogs and Beth is a pretty good dog. The kids that live on this block would probably like a dog like Beth; They probably like to steal from others to pass the time too. I ask all my neighbors and the walrus if they have spotted Beth, they all give me the same answer. No one has seen Beth. Maybe she went to the forest?

 

"Beth... BETH!?" I shouted into the darkness of the woods. Nothing but the hope to ail my lonely heart fuels me to search amongst the endless maze of evergreens. "Beth, girl if you're out there bark twice... please Beth please." Once more, I meet with the hearting sinking reply that is utter silence. My tired feet stumble upon the mossy rock littering the soft soil ground. The air has become unwelcomingly cold; If Beth is still wondering outside, she'll surely freeze. I continue to roam my fueled with the hope of finding Beth; My hope is slowly dying with the last of the daylight. I see a house and I being my lazy trot towards it.

My knuckles rasp against the door of the lonesome home; The door's texture feels off. This is not a wooden door nor is crafted from metal or plastic. I am hit with the realization of what this door is crafted out of, "...Bones"

I can footsteps trailing behind as I stare at the gratuitous house built from bones. A voice calls out, "JOHN!" When I turn around, I am met with a familiar face. It's the policeman for some reason unbeknownst to me he has his gun trained at my head. "I wish you hadn't seen this house, John." Shame and regret coat the police offer's voice. "I am really sorry, pal. I wish it didn't have to be this way... but you know much." 

 

For a moment, I dwell on his appearance. He is all that I am not. This man is the definition of rugged. Stubble crests his chin and semi groomed mustache crowns his upper lip... unlike my bare face vacant from all manly facial hair. His eyes burn with an intensity... unlike mine; I could never hone that amount of passion from myself. His hair is dark cut short, but somehow it looks unkept... manly... unlike mine. His arms and legs rippled with muscles... unlike mine. His skin is had been darkened by spending hours under the sun... unlike mine. It is no wonder why this handsome specimen is betrothed while I spend my life with a quadruped I have come to know as my best friend, as my dog, as Beth. 

Hapless I am; The only thing I can do is raise my hands above my head in surrender. One question pops into my mind, "Oh! Did you take my dog?" The policeman lets his arms go slack a smile starts to curl the corners of his lips. I am only relieved that he isn't aiming the firearm at my skull. I watch as he starts chuckling and then he breaks into a full gut-busting belly laugh; I am not exactly sure what's so funny I wouldn't say that there was an ounce of hilarity in the question. "YOUR DOG? WHAT IN THE DEVIL WOULD I DO WITH YOUR DOG!?" He continues his laughter, but I do not find any bit of this mildly amusing. 

 

"But if you didn't steal my dog, then why are you--" I am cut off before I can finish my question by the police officer's booming, boisterous voice.

"John, no. I'm sorry, but no one cares about your dog." My heart has started to shatter at his words. "This house on the other hand... what you stumbled upon here... I can't just let you go back and tell the others this secret. MY secret." Something in the distances rustles the branches of the pines; Immediately, the officer is focused on the unknown interluder. "WHO IS THERE!?" With this magnificent opportunity, I enter the disgusting house and use my body to keep the door shut. "YOU GET OUT OF THERE, JOHN MOTTS!" 

The policeman continues to shout on the other side. "I think I'm going to stay inside."

 

"You really want to know what's on the inside of that house, John? You think you're ready? Well, you just keep your eyes open. 'Cause from here on out, it's gonna be darkness everywhere for you, John Motts. Darkness..." The officer's voice starts to fade, "... just like it is for me." 

 

 

Thank you for reading the first chapter 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

If you can't see the image for whatever reason here is the link. I will post this picture again once I finish it.

https://www.deviantart.com/psychosocialite/art/The-Devil-and-I-820849496?ga_submit_new=10%3A1574214083

Thank you for reading ♥️🖤♥️🖤


 

This house is dripping with darkness. The only light source available is the flickering dim light provided from the crescent moon; the dull light seeps in from the two windows carved from the front of the house, and it is far too weak to illuminate anything in this disgusting place. My heart continues to pound in my chest... two seconds ago, I almost lost my life by the hands of someone I trusted. Why did he follow deep into the wood, but was so quick to stop pursuing me seconds after entering this house?

 

My eyes squeeze shut as I let my body slide to the floor to sit slumped at the base of the bony door. All I wanted to do was find my dog and go back home; I can't leave, yet the officer might be trying to wait me out and finish the job. Seconds pass, and I can feel something scuttle across my arm. One spider or ant must have found its way to my leg, and then many follow it's lead. Panic swells inside me as I begin to piece together that the door I am propped up against, and the walls of this house are coated countless insects. With the little light I have been provided, I barely make out how the walls twitch with the myriad creatures scuttering amongst their span. I usually am not squeamish when t comes to bugs, insects, arachnids, or what have you; however, it's hard to keep a leveled head when your sinking into a sea of crawling critters that you can't even completely see.

 

My eyes have begone to water. "I wish I weren't inside of this house anymore," I confide to no one. Although I am alone, I hear a deep chuckle erupt from across the room. The madness must have plagued my mind after having so many bugs scurrying around my body. Who would willingly stay in this house; no one that's who.

 

Floorboards creak under the weight of whatever is in here with me. Either I have lost my marbles, or I am not hallucinating the presence of this unknown being. "Have no fear," a voice drizzled in honey croons, "This is my house, and I am glad you have come here to share it with me." An unhuman arm coils itself snugly around my waist only to tug me into its owner. A chill snakes down my spine as the homeowner cages me in within their lengthy limbs. They hold me flushed against their chest and their grip on me with iron tight.

 

"Thank you for y-your hospitality. I-I would be less fearful i-if you'd let go of me." The creature makes no effort to move; they only hum thoughtfully as if considered relinquishing their hold. I notice that the bugs have started skuttering away. Even the insects are frightened of the other's presence; they all retreat from the surface of my skin. The creature rakes their talon-like fingers over my arms lightly; The sensation is by no means unpleasant, but given my current situation, it's nearly impossible for me to indulge in the feeling. "Please stop," the plead comes out as a pathetic whimper rather than demanding and resolute as I intended it to sound.  The other clucks its tongue in disappointment and ceases the unwelcomed caresses; However, I am still being cradled by the unknown being. 

 

Without waiting for me to talk again, the other announces, "I am the Devil." It breathes out the words into the back of my neck, "Contrary to what you may believe, I am not that bad." My heart quickens, and my breathing has become erratic as I squirm in the monster's grasp trying to break free. The hushed voice darkly calls out, "Calm yourself, dear." Its words demand my body's compliance everyone of my muscles involuntarily relaxes; My person lays limp and helpless in the stranger's smothering hold. Every single one of my nerves has become magnetized and is drawn to the other's body. My brain keeps reminding of the warmth of the creature and how alluring its heat is to my shivering body. I find myself craving the warmth emanating from the creature.

 

Anger fills my veins as I try to fight my body's urges back into order. Due to my growing tiredness, I give up my battle for control over my body and press myself as far as I can into the other's body. A frustrated groan escapes me as I rub my cheek against the leather-like surface of the monster's bony chest. I grit out each word painfully slow, "What did you do to me?"

 

A deep rumble rattles through the creature's ribcage; it's quick to bloom into a boisterous laugh that slaughters the once silent house. "I have no idea, my dear monochrome man." The weird pet name rings a bell; however, I can't remember where I heard it before. Just as my mind begins to linger, on the familiar phrase, the demon's breath softly sweeps over the shell of my ear. "Is he gone now?"

 

It's not hard to guess what the creatures asking. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that the Devil is questioning the officer's whereabouts. In a snarky tone, I spit out, "You have just as good of idea as I do." 

 

To my dismay, the creature retracts its arms from me, but I don't let it slide. Even if the monster has had its fill of fonding and has tired of touching me, I am not done. This warmth is far too pleasant for me to relinquish our contact. "What are you doing?" I can hear the smugness in the Devil's voice as they halfheartedly try to pry me off of them. 

 

"What do you think I doing?" I resume nuzzling my face into the strangely textured skin. "You don't get to hug and feel me up as you please and expect me to not do the same." The creature hums as it digests the meaning of my words and analyzes the palpable irritation radiating off of me the double standard the monster has established.

 


My body is lifted off the ground. The creature carries me like a bride, and he lowers himself into what I assume can only is a chair. I hear a sharp flick sound of a match being drawn. A small flame dances to life in between the pads of the monster's spindly fingers. He lights a few candles on a table nearby, and the room is cast in the warm glow provided by the flames dancing upon the candle wicks. 

 

With the newly acquired light source, I can take in all that is the demonic denizen of these woods. Before me is a horned beast with hollowed eye sockets. His skin is a sickly yellow color, dry, and leather-like; it stretches painfully tight over their skeletal form. It appears that if anything were to snag it, the taut surface would likely tear with ease. Something is sprouting from his back, I can distinguish the extra appendages as enormous bat wings protruding from at the shoulder blades. Each of the other's limbs seems irregularly thin and elongated. For the sake of self-preservation, I should be quaking, sprinting away, or putting up some sort of a fight, but I can't. I know I should be frightened, but I am not. As hideous as the creature is, I am attracted to him. Just like a magnet, I am pulled in; Disgusting, truly a nightmare brought to life, but indescribable alluring. He expects me to shriek, turn tail, running as far as my leg will take me just from witnessing his visage. 

 

"By all means," by the tone of his velveting voice, it's reasonably easy to tell that he's mocking me, "have at me Snowflake. Poke and probe to your heart's desire." I can feel my face heat up in embracement at the sensual nature of the challenge. Immediately I kneel in his lap and steady myself by grasping his shoulders. I teeth at his clavicle and he huffs out, "You never cease to surprise me, my dear Motts." Another question surfaces in my mind. How does he know my last name? After I've had my share of providing some heavy petting, I settle into his lap. "If you had any hope of escaping from me, you just snuffed it out, Snowflake." Again this should be setting off several alarms in my head and raising more than a few red flags, but this feels right. 

 

Lightly the demon cards his talons through my hair, and I can't stop myself from sighing at the pleasantness of the feeling. I bury my head into its torso once more and mutter, "Not a fan of the policeman?"

 

To my shame, the other continues to fiddle with my messy locks of hair, and I all but melt under the being's ministrations. Without a doubt, if I were a cat, I would be purring. "Unlike you, the officer isn't my cup of tea." For a split second, the demon ceases combing through my hair, and I grab at its hand, dragging it back to the top of my head; The other chuckles at the childish display, but I couldn't care less. 


"How familiar are you with him?" There is the smallest about of venom in my words. 

 

He purrs out, "Why are you, jealous?" 

 

Yes, I am, but I would be damned to admit that out loud. 

 

I shake my hea aggressively,"No!"

 

The creature brings his mouth near my ear and whispers, "Lies don't last long when they aren't believable. Your lucky your cute, Snowflake." I cover my ear and turn to glare back at the demon. "He," yet again, the creature falters to respond; instead, it elects to glance around the room rather than to look my way, "helps me sometimes, I suppose, but I don't know." What strange thing to say; It's a though he doesn't want to divulge the nature of their relationship to me. The demon reaches out a hand to grasp my arm; Long spindly fingers wrap snuggly around my wrist. "Nobody visits me... I think he sends them away." It is relatively difficult to decipher someone's emotions when they lack eyeballs. I can at least tell that he is pleased by the skin contact; it is evident from the low rumbling sound he makes it's almost like a mixture between a purr and a moan. His thin lips virtually twitch as if he were going to smile, but can't; Maybe, but his skin stretched too tight to allow the facial expression to transpire.

 

"Sorry," I can't figure out what I am apologizing for, but at the moment, I mean it sincerely. The demon keeps one hand on my shoulder and resumes carding through my hair lovingly. It sends tingles sparking throughout my body. The creature begins nuzzling the sensitive skin of my neck, and I can't help but let out a moan. "You're here now, and that's all that matters." Despite not having any meat on his bone, the Devil is surprisingly warm. With my eyes closed, I can imagine him as a normal human being showering me in attention. "I've wanted your help with something for quite some time now."

 

"I'm kind of hung up right now." I sigh and pull away from him a little to regain an ounce of my focus; If I knew better, I say he was pissed that I distance myself from him even if it is only by a few inches.  "You see, my dog ran away. She is my world."  With each word I utter the demon seem to grow a touch more anger. "I am not in a position to be helping anyone until I find Beth." 

 

That was the straw to break the camel's back.  With a bruising grip on my shoulders, he pulls me back into his chest and growls out, "If I scratch your back, will scratch mine?" His hands start to become a little adventurous and trail around the expanse of my torso, teasing the sensitive skin. The talon-like fingers have wondered their way to the southern boarders of my abdomen. His claws fiddle with the hem of my jeans. "What do you say, Snowflake?"

 

"This is not fair." My mind is clouded with lust and desperation. I ground my never-regions into the demon's palm. He peppers my face with kisses. 

 

"Life's never fair, love." His hips grind into my back, and I feel something stiff probing at the seat of my pants. The Devil's husky pants ghost over my neck and his impossibly long tongue slithers over the shell of my ear.  "What do you say?" With every muffled moan that escapes my mouth, his advances become more intense, and he becomes more hungry. 

 

I am nearing the end of my whits, and before I can rationalize what is happening, I breath out, "yes." He hums happily at my response and mercilessly continues exploring my body. His talons glide through the fabric of my shirt like a knife slipping through butter. I whine at the loss of one of my favorite shirts being shredded before my very eyes. His mouth latches onto my neck, and he sinks his razor-sharp teeth into the tender flesh; Surprisingly, it's painless and sends tingles throughout my body.

 

 Blood spills out of the freshly made wound. The demon laps up the red ooze and tongues at the tattered flesh. With his thumb, he whips off some of the blood on his mouth only to smear it on my lips. His hollowed eyes stare at me; I haven't the faintest idea of what is going on in his mind. I am hypnotized by the void that lays is his eye sockets. "Let's seal the deal with a kiss." Each word is drawn out and drips with honey. Chapped lips crash into mine. Immediately I am met with the coppery taste of my own blood. 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

"So, how does this benefit you?" John peers at me with his bright silver eyes. The puny human excuses himself from my lap and begins to take stock of his surroundings. His fingers poke at the bones constructing the walls; He is smart enough not to ask whether or not they are real. All I can think about is how I miss the familiar weight of him perched on top of my legs. I crave the sensation of his silky hair, slipping out of my fingers like water. As I stare at him surveying my home, my tongue darts to the residing blood left from sinking my teeth into his flawless skin. I pride myself in knowing that I am the only one to leave any lasting marks on his body.

 

John saunters towards the front door; he turns back and gives me an expecting glance. I have almost forgotten his question as the anxiety of him leaving me slithers in my stomach. How I wish he'd return to my lap instead of fiddling with the door nob. "It's shouldn't be too taxing on you, Snowflake." In an adorable display of confusion, he cocks his head to the side; It's a silent plea for me to elaborate. 

 

By his look of annoyance, I can tell he's already sick of my evading the question. “Just tell me what you gain from this?” John spits out the ridiculous question. His eyes glow with the subtle light cascading from the moon. There are so many answers to this one silly question, but I can’t bring myself to articulate any of them.

 

I shrug my shoulders, “Only time will tell.” My sweet monochrome man tosses a quizzical glance my way begging me once more for a straight answer. I pluck a tiny pebble-like object from the table and tuck into John’s palm. “All I ask of you is to plant this seed.” His delightful dow eyes peer down at the seedling with wonder permeating his being, and I fail to smother my laughter. “I don’t think that’s that strenuous of a task to tackle… do you?”

 

“If I do that, you’ll help me find Beth?” A pang of guilt hits me, but it is overshadowed by rage. It’s stupid for me to be jealous of a fucking dog, and yet here we are — fire courses through my veins at the mere mention of a mutt.

 

If the dog dies, then I’ll have John all to myself. On the other hand, Beth’s dead could shatter John’s fragile mind. Little does John know his request is incredibly vague. I can find the dog and not report it to him. I could very well know of mangy mutt's whereabout and brutely murdered it; Nevertheless, I would have found the dog and have met my set of requirements. John would never get to figure out his furry companion’s fate, but that would also tear him apart. There are so many loopholes in this deal for me to exploit. These loopholes, as mentioned earlier, are the product of poorly chosen words on John's side of the bargain. It’s entirely his fault for not being wiser when dealing with a demon. Easily I could do as I please while staying in the confines of the arrangement; However, I don't want to break his trust with me. It's a disgusting dilemma; To kill or not to kill what an annoying question. I can’t help but fall for this naïve, flighty, gullible guy and his antics. How could I taint his trust in the world?

 

“Yes, I’ll search for your dog.” Snowflake's face beams with hope. The sight of his smile melts my mind and makes me want to do anything to keep him smiling. These whole thing is tugging my heartstrings every which way. “Far and wide, high and low, night and day. I will search for the tiny beast until your mind is at ease." The kid attempts to wrap himself around me in a hug, but can’t fully encompass my body with his scrawny arms. I rest my check ontop of his head and sigh under my breath, “I could get used to this.” His hair smells like eucalyptus; it calms my nerves. John doesn’t say anything, but I wish he would agree to forever cling to me. Nothing could ever sound more pleasing than to have Snowflake stuck to my side beyond the end of time.

 

While fiddling with the seed in his hands, John breaks me away from my daydream with one question, “What will this do?”

 

“What do you think of me.” It seems like a random question, but it is highly pertinent to the situation. "I know I'm no prince charming, Snowflake, so don't hold back."

 

“You are very touchy, but I guess that’s the pot calling the kettle black.” Other thoughts bounce around in his mind before he adds in, “I would be lying if I said you weren’t hospitable. Also very kind… you are the only p-person to offer to look for Beth with me.” A smile tugs at the corners of my lips as his adorations bathe me. “Also, a fantastic cuddler.” He attempts to wrap me in another hug, this time I'm quick to reciprocate. 

 

As much as it warms my soul, being slapped in the face with an ambush of compliments, I want him to respond honestly. “No, John. When you look at me, what do you see?” Venom seeps out of each word. I know what people see when they look at me, I want to hear it from him. A horrendous nightmare of a man, disgusting, a maddening visage, only the hapless and lost souls can stand my hellish face. John is without a question one of those unfortunate souls. He's ready to rid himself of life the second his last tether to this world snaps. Monochrome man’s life teeters on an ever-shrinking fulcrum, and I can't stand to see him see him be taken into the soil. “Are you not afraid of me, as I am?”

 

Yellowed leather skin, elonged appendages, ram horns crowning my head, tattered wings, razor-sharp teeth, serpentine pronged tail, and no fucking eyes to fill the socketed in my head. To sum it all up, I look like Jack Skellington's meth addict cousin. Nobody should be able to find me even remotely attractive. Unlike many others, John didn't run at the sight of me.

 

Without hesitation, the boy chirps, “Yes, you’re a little on the… scary side.” The kid takes a big gulp of air before he continues to share his perception of my appearance. “By no means are you looker, I would be a liar if I were to say otherwise.” Those words sear through my flesh and bone even though I had already mentally prepared myself to hear them. “However, is beauty is only skin deep.” It is as though he can feel the pain he has unintentionally inflicted upon me; he can barely look at me. “I would rather you be as you are… ugly, than to be staring at a beautiful monster.”

 


~You'd be staring at a monster either way. At least you would find my appearance pleasing.~

 

“That,” I tap at his closed palm. He unconsciously cradles the seed like it's a precious treasure, “will make me who I once was.” I brush my thumb over his slim wrist, pausing over a vein; I can feel the blood rushing under the thin vile of skin.  

 

~I will be handsome again. Someone who you would fall head over heels for. Someone you could be helplessly in love with.~

 

 

“I didn’t always look like this.” My tail coils around the kid's leg, and his eyes are glued to me. “This is punishment," I gesture to myself, "placed on me by another demon, one far less kind than I. He knew no one would want to provide someone as ugly as me with the comfort of their company.” Snowflake doesn't know the truth about cryptids and mythological creatures like myself. The world is full of various demons, monsters, and such lurking in plain sight; no human notices them unless they know what to look for.  

 

“I would’ve been your friend had I met you sooner. Beth would’ve liked you too.” John sighs as he twiddles with the seed. “If you're handsome, you will be too popular to have the time to spare on someone as bland as me.” John attempts to shake the unpleasant thought out of his head, but his efforts are in vain. The crease lines on his forehead show his internal anguish. He is easier to read than a book. “I suppose that’s selfish of me to say. Don’t pay attention to my mindless word vomit.” A sad chuckle creeps out from the monochrome man; It almost sounds like a choked sob someone‘s trying to stifle.

 


I ruffle his hair and coo into the shell of his ear, “I don’t mind you being selfish, Snowflake. It’s actually quite the turn-on.” I rub myself up against him, the suggestive gesture causes his face flush red. "Knowing you want my undivided attention is getting me frustrated... in the best of ways." My teeth tease at the soft cartilage of his ear, this garners a delicious moan from my dear monochrome man. "I'd be more than willing to spark up another deal; I am eager to slate all your selfish desires." I purr out the words pouring from my mouth.  

 

 

 

~No one will ever be as deserving of my attention than you are.~ 

 

 
“It’s easy for you to say that now, but later things will change.” My heart cracks at his muted misery. I don't know much about John's past. If I had to guess about John's past experiences, I'd say he has been tossed to the side on more than one occasion by loved ones. "Anyway, there’s no times better than the present.” He holds the seedling between his thumb and index finger. "Let's get this show on the road."

 

Everyone else is expendable to me in this town. There is no getting through to John; He doesn’t understand that I could have lured anybody else here. He doesn’t know that I am not a sinless soul, that I am a murderer, a thief, and the demon of deceit; I desire no one other than John Motts. The only reason I seek to be beautiful once more is solely for his eyes, and nobody else's. “Follow me, Snowflake.” As his diminutive figure toddles towards me, I place my hands around his throat. He looks up at me wide-eyed, likely wondering if I am about to strangle him; That is maybe something I'd try between the sheets, but not right now.  Once I remove my hands, a platinum collar lays at the base of his neck. Etched into the metal is the words Mo fear monacrómach. John's fingers the foreign phrase, but he'll never know it's meaning.

 


"Neat party trick," he fuses with the jewelry, "but, what's the purpose of this?" If I tell him directly that it effectively works as a dog collar, I know he'll respond in one of two ways; He could panic at the idea of being leashed like a pet or he'll play it off as a joke. "As lovely as this is, it's too flashy for someone as plain-looking as myself. Also, I'm not big on wearing jewelry."

 


"You should be, Snowflake, because it looks gorgeous on you." I press my cracked lips upon his temples. "Please don't turn it down, you'll break my heart in two." John quietly nods and never lets another question regarding the collar leave his tongue. "Into the Woods, we go." I swing open the bone built door; the cold chill of a fall night's crisp air rushes over our bodies. John huddles closer to me for warmth. He is practically clinging to my side as we trudge through the darkness and I am loving every second of it.

 

Snowflake's shuttering teeth clack together as he whispers, "Where are we going?" There is no definite answer to his query. The seed could probably be planted anywhere, but I want John to be the one to deem the spot suitable for the plant to flourish.

 

"I want you to pick the place that you believe is best for it." I am fixated on the void that is burrowing into the forest during this time of night. "Unlike you, I more fitted to destroy than to create. All I plant is quick to die." John doesn't say anything, but I know what he is feeling towards me is probably sympathy. If anyone else understands what it's like to be utterly alone, it's John. "But that's alright because I have you here to help me." With his free hand, John clasps mine and squeezes lightly; It is a tiny gesture, but it fills my heart with butterflies. 

 

After a few more miles of aimlessly wondering the woods, we find ourselves in a clearing. The moonlight bathes our bodies in blue light; John looks like an angel. All of his hueless features soak up the luminescent color the moon provides.  The trees enclose the area, but none are obscuring the view of the crescent moon. Wild blue flowers and hoards of fireflies thrive here despite the harsh bite of autumn. There is something ethereal about this tiny patch of land. Magic surges through the air. Most humans would never be able to feel its energy or find this point, but Snowflake did. "This is the place." John unhooks his hand from mine and glides to the center of the clearing. It's as if he is possessed by the land and has wholly forgotten of my presence. In a voice, almost too soft for me to hear, he utters to the soil of the earth, "here." He purses his lips together and kisses the seed in his palm, "This is where you belong."

 

John's pale white hands claw at the dirt with an urgency he has never exemplified during his time under my watch. Crimson spills from his nail beds as he tries desperately to tunnel into the ground. Copious amounts of blood drip onto the soil and are absorbed almost instantaneously. "John, stop!" He doesn't hear my call. "John, you need to stop." My words don't make it to him as he continues his digging. The skin of his hands tears apart like paper. Every time I try to intervene, the surrounding trees groan at my disturbance; they threaten to call forth the forest's captor, the beast. In the distance, I can hear the other demon's song. So many lives have been lost amongst these trees. The souls have seeped into their bark, the victims' blood enriches the soil, and the bones shelter the monsters laying beneath the ground. "YOU'RE HURTING YOURSELF!" Tears glide down his face, but he doesn't stop until he happens upon bones. The second I spot the skeletal remains, I know my part of our bargain has been met. Dread fills my being. "John, let's go back home." Every word I speak is wasted upon his unhearing ears, "We need to leave now."

 

He carefully places the seed into the center of the rib cage. "There you go." With his raw, wounded fingers, he meticulously arranges his dog's remains around the seedling; Ensuring that the seed is safely secured in the earth's hold.  "I'll stay with you, just like I promised Beth. Roots prowl out from dirt of the plant's bed and twist themselves around John's arms, binding him to the land. 

 


We remain here for what feels like days, but the sun never rises, nor does the moon fall. John proceeds to weep and continues to settle into his state of unresponsiveness. His tears water the plant, and in return, the foliage tries to cradle my love closer. Progressively the roots have coiled around my monochrome man's torso; some of the plant's tendrils have flowered. A bloody red color coats the petals. In the distance beast's song drawls nearer and nearer with each passing moment, it beckons for John's soul to join him. John's end seems to be creeping closer as well. He looks even skinner than before and dehydrated from shedding so many tears. "Fuck it." I slice the plant into shreds and collect Snowflake's unconscious body along with numerous flowers, "John, the deal has been met." 

 

~Please wake up.~

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

I rouse from a long heart-aching dream. To my surprise, I find myself in a house that is all too familiar to me. The structure is forged from bones, and inside I lay sprawled half-naked on a bed that is way too comfy for my mind to comprehend. Silk sheets surround my body, and a plush pillow cradles my head. An angel caresses my face. He peers down at me with a pair of awestruck eyes that warmly greet me into the waking world. My heart feels at peace. I have to be dead, in no reality would a lovely being be petting my head. In no reality would I feel so content with waking up to another day knowing Beth is no longer with me. Words seem inappropriate for me to utter at this moment, it feels like a frail space in time that would crack the second I say something. Instead, I opt to remain in silence, relishing the soft loving touches of the heavenly creature beside me. “Good morning, sleeping beauty.”

 

I can’t place it, but I know this voice. I know its lifts, its falls, and I have a good idea of how it will waver with each emotion. It’s deep, velvety, and it vibrates through the air causing electric surges to run through my bones. “Am I dead?” The spirit looks at me with his golden eyes; sadness taints the precious orbs. With one single look, a solemn, pitying gaze, he wordless answers the question, and I am not fond of his response. I wish for death, and he has denied me of the simple request. The void is the only thing that could fill my ever-growing emptiness. “What brings you here, angel?”

 

He howls in merriment. "I am definitely not an angel, love." His boisterous laughter fills me with the strangest feeling; I can only describe it as being entirely made out of cotton balls. I feel soft inside and light. It's brief, but it's as though I've been freed of all my earthly woes. “John, it's me.” I’ve been awake for about five minutes, give or take; I am not oriented yet. With that said, I think it is fair for me to say that it is far too early to be playing the pronoun game.

 

With my fisted hand, I rub my sleep riddled eyes and yawn. "Me, who?"

 

“Snowflake… do you not know who I am?” On instinct, my shoulders shrug. No, I haven’t the slightest idea of who this person is, nor do I find myself caring about discovering their identity. All I know is that he is painfully attractive, and I, unfortunately, am still fucking alive. “Take a guess.”

 

I try to entertain him by guessing, but I can't allow myself to take that shot in the dark; I know that I don't know him. I stare at the grotesquely beautiful body before me. Sun-kissed skin tightly blankets over rippling muscles, scars litter his glowing skin, but each one only adds to his magnificence. The angelic man has a prominent jawline that is coated with stubble. Golden eyes, belonging to none other than to the devilishly handsome being, have glued themselves to my lips; I feel like my face is burning the longer I stare at him. The man’s long wavy hair shares the same hue as chestnuts. He is breathtaking. I rake through my memories, but I know no one who looks anything like this man. "I wouldn't forget someone with a face like yours. However, your voice sounds so familiar to me," I know this voice, but I don't understand how "Are you pranking me?” There is always the chance that this is a gag, and that this man is a television personality. Something slithers under the sheets of the bed, and it coils around my leg, automatically I chalk it up to being a product of my imagination. After a second examination of the man's head, I take note of two ebony horns protruding from his glorious mane of hair; It's probably just a costume.

 

“No,” the man growls out the single word. “John, I am   me   again.” Reality comes crashing down on me. This modelesque man is genuinely a demon wrapped in human skin; A wolf disguised as a sheep. “The plant actually worked.” He pins me in between his muscular arms, pushing me deeper into the bed with the weight of his body. “What do you think?” I feel like a complete imbecile. Only I wouldn't be able to put two and fucking two together. The thing slithering along my body is the demon's tail, and the protrusions are not an elaborate costume piece, they are undeniably real horns. 

 

“What do I think?” Apparently, I have a lot of thoughts regarding his new look; I can feel my pants becoming uncomfortably tight with each passing second I look at him. The demon nods enthusiastically. He peers down at me, overly eager to hear my personal opinion. “I-I don’t know what you want me to say.” I try to free myself from his grasp, but it is a fruitless endeavor; He is undoubtedly stronger than I could ever dream of being. Even with my eyes closed, I can feel the muscles of his bare chest ghosting over me. This is highly reminiscent of a porno that I don't want to be apart of it at the moment. To my dismay, my body is conspiring against me.

 

In a fraction of a second, his sugary sweet smile falters, and my heart drops at the idea that I am the cause of his joy's demise. Hurting him is the last thing I want to do; This demon has been nothing, but loving and attentive to me. “That’s alright," he stops himself for a moment, “I’m just glad your back with me. You'll never know how much I have missed you, love.” His hand cups my face, and he showers my forehead and checks in feathery kisses. My heart flutters each time he presses his lips against me. I chew on the meaning behind those words, and this does not go unnoticed by him. Not many people are able to see the gears turning in my head, but he can. "You've been unconscious for days, John. I was beginning to think I lost you." For some reason, I don't believe he would let me die even though I very well want to. "All that matters is that you are here." A cocky smile is slapped across his face as his tail brushes against my nether regions. The demon knows precisely what I think of his new form.  

 

My hand raises to stop him from submerging me in affection, “About that… I think it’s time for me to go home.” Imagining leaving the comfort that is being buried in someone else’s arms makes my gut sink a little. As much as I cherish my dog, Beth could never hug or talk to me. This guy, on the other hand, is very touch-driven and vocal. Another thought rises to my head. This guy, despite being a demon, is the only one who’s ever stuck around this long. All my other romantic interests, be man or woman, have all faded away from the town or met their untimely deaths. Will he die too? Just like Beth, like Winifred, Raymond, and the rest?

 

STAY!” The sclera of his eyes turns into an inky black, and his voice takes on a beastly growl, “Your home is empty now,” he continues spewing his thoughts in a threatening tone, “what’s there to go back to?” What he is really saying is... I won't allow you to go back there. His current state of desperation perfectly reflects mine when Beth was alive. Guilt fills my being, I don't want to be his anchor as Beth was mine. I plead, hopelessly for that dog to never leave my side, and yet I found her buried deep within the woods. Tears seep from my closed eyes, the demon’s laps up the salty droplets and then dips down with his mouth inches from the site of skin he had sunken his teeth into. “Just stay with me.” Those words clench around my heart; Had I been with my dog in her final moments, I probably would have said something along the same lines.

 


I scoff at him, “I’ve known you for all of three days. I haven’t the faintest idea what your name is. I am of a poor state of mind, and you are asking me to live with you?” I start laughing hysterically in between my unending sobs. The being above me only hugs me closer to him. It is the strangest thing, but I can’t bring myself to utter the word, no. My hands cover my teary face, but the demon is quick to pry them away. 

 

“Yes, John, I want you to stay with me.” Through my watery eyes, I can see that his demeanor has softened. “Time is of little consequence to me. I couldn’t care less about what you called me. Just don’t leave me alone.” It’s asinine for something a grossly gorgeous as this fallen angel to desire someone as lackluster as me. I know I am not hideous, but he could do far better than someone like me.  He could find some with fewer emotion issues than me.

 

“Why?” He only shrugs his shoulders, but I can read the rational in his glimmering golden eyes. I poke my index finger into his chest. “You’re an idiot.” What I said is harsh, and I regretted saying it the second it left my mouth. However, it is painfully apparent to both us that I don’t mean a lick of it; I wish I did. God, I wish I did.

 

 

“I am well aware of that, love.” It’s as though he knows the exact words to use to mold me to his will. He knows just the perfect way to press against my skin and cause me to crave his touch; It’s irritating to be so malleable to him. I murmur my apologies, but he stills my series of sorries the second his thumb traces my lips. As weird as it is to say, this demon is a ray hope for me in this dark time. He is as brilliant as the sun itself to me, but I am lost cause.

 

Mindlessly I wrap my arms around the modelesque man, “Sol,” golden eyes peer down at me with a question hidden inside them, “your name.”
Sol hums appreciating the sound of his newly assigned identification. 

 

“It’s absolutely perfect, Snowflake.” Sol's head creeps down to my ear, "I would love to hear you screaming it with your legs wrapped around me." Slowly his tongue slithers over the shell of my ear. "Again, say it again, John." 
 

I can't stop myself from complying with his demand. "Sol." A pleased rumble erupts from his chest and urges me to call out his name more. With both of his hands cradling my checks, he forces me to look directly at him, "Sol."

 

Sol's hand combs through my hair, "You are so good to me." Heat pulses throughout my body at the simplistic expression of praise. "I think you know very well that I have no intention of letting you leave." Sol plants numerous pecks just above the necklace he had given me. The demon mutters in a hushed voice, "Just as I know you don't plan on lingering in the world of the living." My jaw drops at the suggestion that I planned on taking my life; He isn't wrong. I didn't think anyone knew of my ongoing dance with depression, this waltz has persisted for years now it began around the time I decided to move to this peaceful town. All who I come to love are always quick to vanish into the land of the dead. Beth was my last anchor, but I have nothing now. No family, no friends, no future prospects, just this stranger holding me, and like the others, I know he won't last. No one has ever noticed the voice luring me into the void and into the unknown land of all who have perished before me. Sol is the first to see that I am not alright.

 

He really hit the nail on the head. For the strikingly short period that we've known each other, he can see through me like no other. None of the therapists could ever get such an accurate reading on me, and yet this stranger has.  "Sol," he licks strips of the skin on my neck, clouding my mind with the odd sensation, "Sol, I need to go home." It really doesn't matter if he wants me to stay, because I know he'll leave me for the void like everyone one else who filled these shoes before him; I can't keep repeating this cycle of losing and gaining people near and dear to me. For once, I want to be the selfish one. For once, I want to be the one who gets to leave first. Is that so wrong? "You need to let me go."
 
"No," he completely stops his advances, "I know what will happen if you leave." Tears well up in my eyes and begin to stream down my face. "You can't go, I will not permit it."

 

My broken voice wheezes out, "That's not your call to make." I've had a plan set in place following the moment of Beth's death. Plan A is the revolver I have hidden below a pile of folders; It sits tuck in the desk of the room I designated as my office. Plan B is an orange bottle containing various medications. Finally, if I cannot follow through with the first two options, there is a tank of helium tucked in the corner of my garage. It wouldn't take long for my neighbor's to find my body; They always barge into my home unannounced seeking various favors from me. "I have nothing to live for, Sol." Only in my death would I be able to escape their unending trivial tasks, I have never been capable of turning them down even when I wanted to. I am a pushover. People step on me as if I were a doormat.


 
"Then live for me." Yet another favor someone requires of me; It is entirely selfish to ask me to continue to grovel in my misery, but I can't fault him for it. I don't want to get attached to Sol, it will only result in more pain. As much hope as he fills me with, my mind has been programmed to snuff out anything pleasant. 


 
"What's in it for me, Sol?" All I can feel is an overwhelming sense of greed and grief. I want attention. I want this pain to subside. All I need is for someone to fucking stay near me and not leave. I don't care what the price is I can't stand this emptiness any longer; it's eating at my mind and has devoured my need to exist. 


 
A devilish smirk cracks through his face. "Anything your heart desires, so long as you are willing to be entirely mine." I don't know what he means by this, but it's tempting.

 

This will be the last time I place my faith into someone. After this fails I'll go to sleep for the last time."Don't leave me, like rest. Please don't hurt me as they did." 


 
Sol is quick to reply, "Never, would I dream of it."


 

"Please take this pain away." His golden eyes burned into my brain; I'll never be able to forget their beauty, not in this life nor the next.


 
Sol places his palm over my heart; I find the gesture oddly comforting. "With pleasure, anything else, my pet? The sky's the limit, but I don't mind ascending beyond that for you." Silently I shake my head no, my sobs have turned to hickups. Sol taps my nose and winks. "Let's seal the deal with a kiss." Before a single protest can leave me, the demon latches his mouth onto mine. Something under the skin of my neck sears at the flesh, my cries of pain are muffled in Sol's mouth. Something I can't name burns in his eyes. It feels as though I've just sold my soul. 

Chapter Text

Most of the town's own residents don't move away. It's as though the concept of relocating never occurred to anyone; I admit I may have pulled a few strings to make the citizens so docile and dependent on this land. They don't travel much or go on vacation. The inhabitants merely go about their little lives. Never do they wondering far from the confines of this town nor my reach. Only when I come to collect their souls, do they depart this dreary town. Families grow the old generations pass, and new generations take root; it's always been like this, and it will continue to be like this. Now and then, an outsider will drift into town, but I don't take the time to commit them to my memory. There is no sense in investing energy into the lives of the interlopers.

Usually, the new faces don't come to stay long; You were the puzzle piece that didn't fit in, the outlier, the exception, the black sheep, and your presence sent me into a whirlwind of emotions. After the first year of you staying here, you caught me; Ever since you came along, nothing else could be worthy of my attention. It was the strangest thing I was practically on the edge of my seat, wondering when you'd chose to leave this wretched place like all the others before you, but you didn't. In the beginning, it just seemed like you were some lowly straggler seeking out somewhere to belong. Desperately searching for somewhere to call home; I couldn't have been more wrong. I counted the days till your departure, but it never came.

I found myself not wanting you to go; It started as a mild distaste at the idea of your absence and then grew to something that plagued my mind. I usually pride myself on maintaining a sense of indifference regarding my relations with people, but my perception of you was polarized. Becoming sentimental is a dangerous game, especially when dealing with mortals. I never wanted to lower myself to the level of the crowd of common moronic self-serving weaklings inhibiting this town. At first, I tried to convince myself that you were a meaningless way to pass the time and held little to no meaning to me; Lies like that don't last long when they aren't believable.  I started to fear that you would leave any moment and meet an unfortunate faith somewhere out of my reach. Our story would end, you would be gone, and I alone. 
 

You had already found your home, and you didn't need to belong to a community to feel content. Your home was with that fucking mutt you call Beth. I fail to wrap my mind around the fact that your mutt was lucky enough to find you. I can't understand why that dog was gifted with your company formerly instead of me. Day in and day out, I observed you. My dignity, I cast it to the side since your arrival. I watched you like a schoolgirl pining over her onesided crush. It has torn my heart apart, seeing you smothered that dog in every ounce of love you could muster.

 

I was fascinated by how no one else mattered to you. All your neighbors were just background noise. You only took the time to talk to your next-door strangers when they ask for assistance; Never once did you hesitate to help them. All of those parasites certainly did not care about you. They only cared about using you for all your worth; You never denied them your time, and I couldn't piece together why. You never asked anyone for anything in return, you were carving companionship and would slat that yearning with that fucking mutt's affection.

 

The first time my eyes spotted you, I couldn't catch what made you beautiful to me. I was hesitant to admit that you were beautiful in my eyes. Surely it wasn't your looks that drew me in. Not once did I think you were an eyesore, but you definitely wouldn't pass for a model. All your faults have become lovely to me now, but back then, I tried to use your lesser traits as reasons to loathe you. You were average in every sense of the word, maybe even a touch below that. You were odd-looking to me or at least that what I told myself.

~Know this; even back then I wouldn't have changed a single thing about you.~

 

Ghostly pale skin coated your bones and innards;  A matching mess of snowy white hair crowned your scalp. Your eyes, now they are one of my favorite features on your face, also lacked in hue. Your eyes are just two silver irises. Before I knew your name, you were the monochromatic man to me. You weren't tall or short, just somewhere in-between. No one could call you muscular, not even the blind. You thought no one would notice, but I did, how you would layer your clothes to hide how slim you are. So thin almost to an unhealthy degree. Snowflake was another name I used to mock you for your fragility. Just a bachelor in his mid to late twenties. How could I have known I would become so obsessed with you? What did you do to me?

 


Watching the monochrome man fills me with so many disturbing thoughts. Why am I so enamored with this boring piece of shit? All Snowflake does is dote on his stupid dog or run errands for his crappy neighbors, and for what? Maybe the monochrome man is a moron? Does he know they are using him? Perhaps he is just gullible? Why can't I stop watching you? Why does that damn dog piss me off to no extent? Does he feel my eyes on him like the other citizens can? It has been a year now, and he still hasn't left. Every day that passes, I grow a touch more jealousy; Though, of who I do not know.

 

The monochrome man goes on one of his frequent visits to the grocery. To my surprise, a woman bombards him upon entering the store. "Slut," I hiss out to no one in particular. It is Mrs. Tomson clad in a black pen skirt that is a size too small, a blouse with a plunging neckline, and decked on in gaudy jewelry. By the way, Monochrome man scrunches his nose; I can tell she drenched herself in cheap perfume, and the cloying scent is causing the unfortunate target of her lust to become woozy.

 

"John," Mrs. Tomson coos, "How do you like my new outfit?" All I can pick up from her grating voice is his name. It is a common name for an average man. "I just bought it and felt like showing it off." She twirls around, showing off how the outfit coats her body like a second skin leaving absolutely nothing to the imagination. I roll my eyes at the offensive spectacle unraveling before my eyes.

 

~I have seen prostitutes dress more conservatively~

 

"Hello, Kate." John greets the tramp with a disarming smile; I can practically hear Mrs. Tomson's muted swoon. John's burrows furrow making his panic visible. I want nothing more than to ail his discomfort by decapitating the source of his unease. John's forehead creases as he takes the time to craft a kind and personalize compliment for the charlatan. "It really shows off your form," Monochrome man appears slightly flustered as he examines her outfit, "I bet the mister will be hot under the collar when he sees you." His choice of words is shockingly appropriate under his current circumstances.

 

Her lecherous eyes scan his face for any sign of desire only to find a frazzled man riddled with anxiety. She scoffs, "I'd be lucky if he looked my way," Kate slowly rubs John's arm, her spindly fingers inching toward his hand like a spider creeping towards its prey, "but I'm luckier to have run into you." She winks at the monochrome man and takes his hand.

 

John jolts at the touch and gently removes her grasp on him, "Yeah, it is always nice to running into a familiar face." His face is flush not because he is bashful, but because he is embraced by her unruly behavior. He excuses himself from the women's advances only to be ambushed in the pet section by yet another tramp. Once more, the man's body becomes slightly ridged as though he is aware of the onslaught of harassment he is promised to receive.

 

"Mr. Motts fancy seeing you here." I can't help but smile to myself, enjoying the sound of monochrome man's real name on my tongue, John Motts. I recognize the new harlot to be Winifred Smith, a least this one is a widow. "How's Beth?" She cocks her head to the side, feigning interest in the mutt. Her cascading hair sways back behind her shoulders, all for the sake of providing John with an unobscured view of her cleavage, but he doesn't ogle her chest, not even for a second. She seems somewhat disappointed by the fact that John isn't molesting her with his eyes.

 

The moment the beast's name is utter monochrome man grins. He is physically unable to contain his adoration for the pet; He is genuinely the owner of a piss poor poker face. John Motts is dumb enough to take the bait, "She great I taught her a new trick!" Delight beamed off of monochrome man at the mention of his pet; He is practically bouncing in place with his overwhelming joy.

~ He's kind of adorable~

Seeing him radiate with happiness makes my heart quicken little. Then it dawns on me. I want that. I want someone to love me to point where they can't help but grin at the sound of my name. I want him.

 

Winifred presses her chest against John as she grasps his arm. I cannot stop myself from clawing at my arm due to the distasteful display I am subjected to. "I'd love to come over to see." Much like Kate Tomson, Winifred is also shamelessly dressed in skimpy attire. Her lips are tainted red, and she is stuffed into a wine-colored dress that hugs her curves; it is far too short to be wearing during this time of year, not something one would put on to go run errands in. John is far too base to understand that she wants to spend the night with him. A woman dressed like that in a covenant store isn't looking to gather groceries; She wants your unwavering attention dumbass.

 

"Yeah," Monochrome man awkwardly shuffles away from her, "maybe some other day we could have a neighborhood get together or something. Everyone could bring their pets." For some reason, I want to commend John for being able to turn down their advances; Most men would take them up on their offers, but John is too dense to detect their come-ons. "It would be fun."

 

Winifred gives a sad smile, "I kinda wanted some alone time with you." I give her points for being direct; it a very bold move to make. John still looks confused, so she elaborates, "like dinner and dessert." My skin crawls at the way she dwells on the word dessert; She bites her bottom lip and stares up from her long eyelashes waiting for John's answer.

 

A nervous chuckle escapes John, "I'd like that." Both Winifred and I are baffled. Here I thought Monochrome man had absolutely no balls. I had been lead to believe he lacked the drive to pursue anything in the realm of romance. Carnal desires seemed like something that didn't exist for this man; Apparently, I am wrong. "Are you free tomorrow?"Out of the blue, Winifred seems to have lost her bold confidence. Shyly she nods with the slightest smile gracing her crimson lips. Winifred attempts to tug down her dress as probably due to feeling more and more self-conscious about its short length. The outfit can't be pulled down any further, but she still fusses with its hem. It's difficult for me to fathom why they are attracted to such a bland man. Although he is somewhat cute, he has absolutely zero sex appeal. It's as though someone is tightly clutching my heart, this sight brings me nothing but pain.

 

~You should dote and fawn over me instead of some hussy.~

 

The woman shivers ever so slightly, and without missing a beat, John drapes his coat around her."Can you pick me up at 8?" When John agrees to the time, she hugs him, and John actually reciprocates the gesture by pulling her slightly closer to his chest. Winifred dissolves into giggles from the embrace. Rage consumes me, why should some tramp get to enjoy monochrome man when I've been the one studying him. As they part ways, she does not return his jacket; It'll be mine soon enough. Sheepishly she fusses with the hem of her dress and softly murmurs, "I can't wait, John." Monochrome man flashes a smile at her, and the two share one last hug.

~And those are going to be your last words, bitch. ~

 

Later that night, unbeknownst to John, Winifred met her demise at the hands of a robber. Ms. Winifred Smith had come home to her empty house only to be welcome by a criminal. The convict had stabbed her eight times and wrote in her blood two words, monochrome man. Nobody but the perpetrator and I will ever know the meaning behind the bloody message.

 

~It wasn't me. I was not the one to snuff out the woman's flame, but I will happily take credit as the one who to orchestrated the affair.~

 

Circumstantially, I am unable to tear my gaze from my dear monochrome man. John a brown leather couch drinking a bottle of spiked cider and watching some C list horror movie while cozying up to his favorite mutt, Beth. The shrill sound of his phone ringing causes him to halt his movie viewing and frightens Beth. Panicked, the dog runs in circles around her owner, almost as if she senses a bad omen.

 

"Hello?" All I can hear is John's side of the conversation, but it isn't hard to guess who's on the other side of the line. "What are you saying?" Confusion and fear taint John's voice as he speaks. "No, Winifred is fine! She has to be, I just saw her about two hours ago." John tries desperately to control his breathing and maintain a level hand. Monochrome man attempts to keep his attention does all he can to focus on the conversation. "We were at the grocery and planning our d-date." Tears well up in his eyes as the person on the other side of the phone fails to calm John. "How can I be calm! Winifred is dead! If I had invited her over, she would still be alive!" John goes silent for a while before uttering in a defeated voice, "I am sorry for yelling."

 

Monochrome man hangs up the phone and returns to the couch. I feel content as his body crashes on top of the comfy-looking piece of furniture.

 

~It serves you right, my love.~

 

The mutt follows her gloomily master and claim a spot on the couch nearest to John's face. Beth places a paw on his chest and whimpers. "Thank you, Beth." John slings an arm over his eyes to hide his tears from his four-legged companion, but the furry beast immediately nudges it away with her muzzle. "At least I will always have you." John wraps the mutt in his arms and continues to skulk about the whore's early death. "If you left… that would probably be the end of me, Beth." The mangey mutt lightly paws John's face as if to say no. "Everyone leaves me so I'll just follow you when your time comes." Tear stream down his face as he pets the mutt. 

 

~You don't get to make that call.~

Chapter Text

t fills my soul with warmth to know that John, by his own volition, made yet another careless deal with me. It sounds horrible, and it is because I planned this; All of this... mostly all of this. Every single one of his dates dying or vanishing, that was me, or at least I organized it. The policeman threatening to end his life conveniently close to my front door, that also my doing. One thing that was not apart of my plan was Beth actually being dead; I know I am the Devil, but I never would be able to obliterate something that John cherished more than his own life. 


 
From what I've gathered over the years of watching John Motts and being his second shadow, Snowflake's family is long gone. So I was not granted the glory of shortening their insignificant lives or blooding my hands with their innards. It should go without saying that I would have savored meticulously mutilating his family members for what they have done to him. Who could be so cruel as to let Snowflake wander the world utterly alone? A myriad of designs for destroying Mott's family flickers to life in my head. Slowly my claws would scoop out their eyeballs, filling the vacant sockets with their own teeth and nails. Peeling their pale flesh like potatoes skins as they beg for my love's forgiveness. Dismembering their digits is also a delightful thought, plucking the fingers off one by one and stuffing the tiny appendage down their throats. Disemboling, John's father, is another dream of mine. I can imagine hearing the wonderous crunch of the cervical spine of the horrendous man snapping as he hangs from his own intestines. I would hold off on collecting his mother's eyes as I would want her to witness all that I do to her husband. Of course, John would be opposed to this, but who's to say how he'd feel later down the road?


 
It is plain to see that my dear isn't completely stable at the moment since he has yet to come to terms with the mangy mutt's death. His current vulnerability is what made this the perfect time for me to strike. The ever-looming threat of him committing suicide has always been a fear of mine. Since I have claimed ownership of his sugary-sweet soul, that nightmare will no longer haunt my thoughts. It's hilarious to think that I am still capable of feeling fear. Having something to be frightened of is alien to me; I don't fret over what could harm me, as there is nothing, but what may damage my John is beyond terrifying. My existence has always been a scourge upon the earth; I am a being that lucks in the dark filling silent nights with howling screams. I am the bringer of panic; never was I meant to be a plebian affected by it. All I have ever been able to feel was scorn, sorrow, jealousy, and searing rage. When he waltzed into my line of sight, everything became perversely deformed and has clouded my mind with such trivial emotions solely reserved for the weaklings I have dealt with for eons. I could never fault John for what he has made me.
 

 

The pale kid lays coiled weeping in my arms. I find the display of despair to be just as heartbreaking as it is endearing. "Please stop crying, John." My pleas are useless. He is like a bird that has clipped its wing, I want nothing more than to return it to its former glory. "You know I am immortal, Snowflake." At those words, his head pops up, and he stares at me like I'm some sort of alien. Thankfully his tears cease. "Death isn't something I can experience. I couldn't die even if I wanted to." 


 
The kid fluctuates from being ecstatic to fuming with a silent ferocity. John's snarky voice fills me with delight as he spits out the words, "No, I can't say that I knew that." His tiny fingers shoot up to probe at the freshly burned runes scrawled on his neck. "So... about this deal." 
 


"No can do kiddo." I relish how his face scrunchy with frustration. I love how the skin from his neck up to his ears flushes red whenever he is embraced or slightly annoyed. "For you, I am sad to say all deals are final." Now, I know omitting essential information is a seedy thing to do, but later down the line time will tell me that this was all well worthwhile. Had John recognized my inability to die, he would not have offered up his soul on a silver platter. Over the indefinite time that I have lived, I have learned one crucial lesson; If you covet something the way I do, there is no room for hesitation. Invariably, you must stake your claim to it by whatever means necessary. A chance had presented itself to me, so I jumped on it without faltering. Life is a game, and the unactive players miss out on all the fun; John will come to understand that soon enough. All the horrendous crimes I have committed are small potatoes compared to the reward I have reaped.


 
"Sol..." My sweet monochrome man bats his eyes at me, "what exactly did I give up." You gave me indisputably everything you have been, are, and will ever be. Your veins, muscles, skin, hair, teeth, eyes, brain, bones, and so much more belongs to me. The real question is, what still belongs to you? The answer being, nothing.


 
"Don't worry too much about it." I ruffle his silky hair and rub the tear trails away. "You'll never be alone, you'll never want for anything, and you will always be protected." My hand cradles his cheek. "I am all you will ever need. If I am not, I will rise to cater to your desires. You only have to stay with me." I leave out the fact that he cannot oppose me any longer. As of now, I don't mind a little confrontation between us; Small doses of conflict and fan the flames of lust. 


 
John looks up at me; My heart melts at the way those slivery eyes glimmer as they peer at me. I would be brought to my knees in a matter of seconds if this mere mortal figured out how far my affection for him goes. Fortunately, for me, John has yet to discover that I am completely wrapped around his pinky. "When you put it like that, it sounds almost as though we are married." I toss the thought around in my mind and find that I hold no objections to the idea of betrothal. Exchanging marital vows doesn't seem that ridiculous to me; had anyone else uttered those words, I would laugh them out of my house. As long as John is my blushing bride, I wouldn't mind tying the knot. John's anxiety flares up as the silence between us grows. Yet another thing I treasure about John, whenever nerves creep up on him, he turns into a muttering mess whispering something along the lines of, "That was stupid of me to say, pretend you didn't hear that." 
 

 

"Nothing you say can ever qualify as stupid. If anyone believes contrary, they are truely fools, and I will gladly do away with them." I squeeze his skinny frame into me and crown his head with kisses. Actually, I found his perception of my words to be extremely adorable. There could be multiple interpretations of what I said, but he selected the most romanized elucidation. "No, that was pretty much on the nose. It's a little late in the game to ask this, but is that alright with you?" I swear if he says no, there will be many mutilated bodies scattered the woods. It doesn't matter if his protests are pointless, they wound me all the same, I want him to choose to be with without having to force his hand.


 
It feels like I have waited an eternity for his answer. With each passing second, my teeth ache with the want to sink into the flesh of some unfortunate soul's vessel. A minute crawls past me, my nail beds pulse threating to grow into monstrous talons ready to tear into the integument of the unsuspecting victims I find. Fire pulses through my veins running rampant throughout my body. Never have I found waiting for an answer to be so torturous. "No." With that single word, I poison begins rushing through my bones and muscles. There is nothing I know of that can calm me at the moment. Nothing other than the pale body in front of mine. Snowflake chucks at how murderous I appear and then questions me, "You're not going to get on one knee? Wait for the perfect moment to pop the question, or wear a suit?" My dear monochrome man scoffs at me. God, if anyone else dared to mock at me, the way he did, they would find themselves missing their tongue and cheeks. When Snowflake teases me, it's playful and lighthearted; My heart flutters with the notion that he is comfortable enough to poke jabs at me. "That is not that romantic, Sol," I swear each time he says my name my heart pounds against my rib cage, like a captured animal attempting to break the bars of its confinement. 

 

Way to put me on an emotional roller coaster.

 


"I will do so much more than that when the time comes." My sweet monochrome man squirms under my arms, "My proposal to you will be something so outrageously romantic, your heart will explode." 
 


"I guess when that time comes, I won't be able to say no." On his own, John presses a kiss to my temple. Usually, I am the one to initiate intimate gestures. It is so soothing to hear him agree to remain by my side willingly. Briefly, I thought I would have to do something unsetting to change his mind. I don't like the idea of overpowering his will, but I know if the situation played out differently, I wouldn't hesitate to do so. 


 

"I am glad to hear it." A few unpleasant thoughts take root in my mind and they flourish; I feel myself become overtaken will jealous. If John had the opportunity to pursue a relationship with one of his dead suitors, he would have probably been happily married by now. Maybe he would even have started a family. The thought of some slut riddled with disease clinging to him in the dark of night leaves a bad taste on my tongue. The mere idea that John could be in someone else's arms is infuriating. Between clenched, I growl out, "Do you love me?"


 
John looks at me as though that is the hardest question he's ever been asked. "I haven't thought about that." With those words, my heart shatters a little. He throws the simple question back at me. "Sol, do you love me?"


 
"Yes, more than you'll ever know." I feel guilty that he is not already aware of the answer. 


 
My dear monochrome relocates himself on the bed to sit behind me. John's fingers toy with my strands of hair and begin to comb through my long locks as he trying to detangle the waves. "I have to admit I feel many things toward you." He separates my hair into three parts and begins to weave them together. "I can say this, without a shadow of a doubt, I care deeply about you." I can't stop myself from humming in satisfaction as Snowflake continues to twist my hair into a braid. The second he finishes styling my hair; he kisses the base of my back just above where my shoulder blades begin. "You probably know that I am hopelessly attracted to you even when you were less... handsome."

 

That's news to me. I was disgusting the definition of an eyesore.

 

Even though I can't see John's face, I can tell that he is blushing profusely. The kid draws random shapes across my back. With each random stroke against my spine, I am filled with the urge to jump him. "I can't imagine where I would be if I hadn't met you. Probably, dead at your doorstep with bullets filling my head." Slowly his hands trail up my back, past my neck to poke, and probe at my horns. "There isn't a doubt in my mind that I need you, Sol. I can't say if what I feel towards you is love, lust, or infatuation." 


 
My mind repeats his word over and over again. John loves me but has yet to realize it. He continues to torture me with tender touches. I turn around and grab his wrists, "I would stop with the feathery touches if I were you, Snowflake. It's driving mad." The second I take a better look at his eyes, I can't help but notice how his brilliant silvery eyes have been corrupted with the inky black of his pupils. John frantically attempts to dislodge his wrists out of my hold, but it's pointless. "I'm dead serious, your playing with fire, kid. As it is right now, I am at my wit's end." 


 
"Did you ever consider that was the plan?" Never will this mortal cease to surprise me. "Are you really going to me wait until the wedding night? That is pretty prude for the Devil, isn't it, Sol?"


 
I growl at his words, "You have been crying your eyes out for the better half of the day. Do you think I am so heartless?" I release his arms, and he has finally stopped teasing me with his deliberately slow touches. 


 
"You promised me anything I could have anything I wanted." He gazes up at me with a challenge burning in his orbitals. Heat pools into my lower abdomen. It would be so easy to cave, to give in to temptation. "You're not delivering on your side of the bargain." In embarrassment, he whispers out, "Sol, I want you to touch me." John's begging is intoxicating, my hands burn with the urge to comply. "Am I asking for too much?" Snowflake knows damn well that I am at my breaking point.


 
As much as his words fill my being with pleasure, I will not allow myself to be swayed by the heat of the moment. "John, I am not going to hurt you like that." I hate keeping myself at arm's length away from him. "I am not going to take advantage of you in this state." I am a hypocrite to myself. Just a handful of hours ago, I claimed John's soul because he was in emotional distress. I have never detested my dubious nature. Manipulating the emotionally compromised has always been a fun way to pass the time, up until now. "I value you too much to use you for my own pleasure, seconds after you were contemplating killing yourself." 


 
The spark of lust surging in his eyes sizzles out. John does not look fuel by rage or sunken despair. The snowy-haired man nods, "Thank you, Sol." Ever time my name slips from his lips, shivers crawl down my back. "I am usually not like this." 
 

 

Oh, I know. You are the type that gets assaulted in board daylight by horny widows and unhappy housewives.

 

John rubs his arm sheepishly. I can tell he is questioning whether this refusal is an announcement of my lack of attraction to him or my unwavering loyalty; Over time, he will see it is the latter. "Sorry." 

"There is nothing to apologize for, pet."