I wanted to incinerate this new Solomon when he first suggested a cremation for the funeral rites we would be holding for our fallen today. My brother, at least, belonged in the family crypt. At least until he had made me see reason when he explained himself. DNA is a powerful tool in magic, especially the darkest of arts. It was safer for their living counterparts if the remains were burned. If I am to accept this other Mammon as my brother, which I have, then he should have a place with us in the crypt. Even still, it's a difficult pill to swallow.
Solomon and his granddaughter will be hosting most of the ceremony. I think it is brave of Leila to want to do this, since she has lost so much and I know she is definitely not quite ready for all this emotional stress. But I suppose everyone grieves differently. I noticed that Leila wants to keep herself busy. Which is not a bad trait. I hope she won’t get a backlash from it later, when the dust settles and there is less to occupy her mind with.
I have to admit that Solomon and Leila organised an interesting setting. I was worried they would make the funeral into too much of a religious Human World event and make me and my brothers uncomfortable attending. I was relieved to find that wasn’t the case. Despite the fact that Lily’s rogue powers had decimated the gardens in her grief. And I had to humble myself by asking Solomon to hire gardeners from the magical society, the gardens were looking more beautiful than ever. Making sure Lily wore her emotion absorbing talisman, I made sure it stayed that way.
They requested for us to place a certain number of flat stones in a perfect circle around the two pyres on which Mammon and Solomon’s caskets are placed. They look like primitive stone benches for two or three people and they are decorated with an abundance of wildflowers and greenery. Soft pillows are placed on top or against the stone benches and on each bench sits a basket with a couple of candles. Waiting to be lit later, when the sky will darken and the ceremony will begin.
My brothers made me proud as they were all eager to help with the preparations. Even Belphegor. Most likely to show their good intentions to our new family members. Just like me, they want them to return to us soon. Even if it isn’t as soon as we wish for.
Ever since I entered the Devildom, my life had been evolving in a whirlwind, so much has changed. I have changed. I’ve never had such an abundance of love and joy in my life. I knew what it was like to lose someone you loved, the heart ache. But it didn’t prepare me for this..this soul rending loss. I feel irrevocably changed by it, like nothing will be the same. The sun will never shine as bright but the world will keep turning regardless.
I’ve wandered into the rose garden while others are preparing for the funeral rites. We’re not just honoring Mammon and Solomon, but those that Leila and James lost as well. I absentmindedly rub the talisman around my neck that’s protecting the garden from my coresive mood. I haven’t had to rely on it for a long time but the day Solomon and Mammon died, this garden nearly died with them in response to my grief and anger. Lucifer had to go through a lot of effort to restore the gardens to their former glory in time for today since I haven’t been up to the task. Picking up some gardening shears I cut six perfect white roses. It doesn’t take too much effort to change the colors of the roses: Blue, Red, Orange, Pink, Green and Purple. I’ll give three of them to Leila and three to James.
When I’m busy with the roses, I notice a soft humming behind me. I immediately recognize it as Leila’s voice. I turn around and see her gently caressing the white roses from the bushes where I just cut mine. When I listen closely, I can hear the words that she sings barely above her breath, a lot of melancholy in her voice.
Promise me, when you see,
a white rose you'll think of me
I love you so
Never let go
I will be your ghost of a rose
She gives me a sad but grateful smile while I silently cut more white roses for her. Ten white roses for everyone we lost. She doesn’t need to explain to me what they mean to her, after what she just sang. I made sure to remove the thorns before I gave her the ten white roses, along with the pink, green and purple roses.
Leila’s grandfather and Asmodeus did a beautiful job with the arrangements and the caskets. Even if it’s all going to burn. My heart wrenches painfully at the thought, even if my mind understands.
I walk up to James who sits with Pandora on his lap on one of the heavy stones that Lucifer and the others have placed in a circle around the pyres at Leila’s request. Next to him Beel has taken a seat. I can see how this is simultaneously comforting and difficult for James. Belphie has taken a seat on the soft pillows at their feet, leaning against their legs in quiet comfort. He’s blushing a little, because Pandora is trying to pull his hair. Cooing to him to try to get some attention from her father, who is not really her father, but how can she know… It is both adorable and heart-wrenching to watch. I give James the same watery smile as he gives me and I hand him the blue, orange and red roses. “To say goodbye..”I whisper hoarsely before giving him a kiss on the cheek.
I walk up to Mammon’s funeral pyre first.. Even if he’s still in his fearsome demonic form, he looks so beautifully at peace. I want nothing more for him to wake up, laugh and make fun of my face. That he will tell me it was just some horrible, cruel joke. His hands are folded on his chest, his beloved rings glinting in the last light of the day. On an impulse I pull the three silver rings off his fingers and I can’t help but flinch at how cold his hands are, hands that used to hold my own with so much warmth. I barely feel the silent tears that begin flowing down my cheeks again.
“I’m so sorry…” I whisper. My voice is hoarse, barely recognizable as I press a last kiss to his cold cheek.
Warm arms wrap around my shoulders. “It ain’t your fault.” The familiar voice brings both pain and solace to my soul. As hard as it is to accept that my Mammon is gone, I’m grateful that James’ and Leila’s Mammon, who is my dear friend too, has a place here now. I turn just enough in his hold to give him a hug in return, my tears unrepentantly wet his expensive shirt. Finding strength in his arms, he walks with me, the short yet terrible distance to Solomon’s pyre. Only a few steps away, but it feels like miles, the distance me and my beloved are forever apart from each other now. Forever out of my reach.
Unfamiliar, dark thoughts swirl in my mind as I look at him lying there, perfect, even in death. There’s a very small part of me that would give it all up, to crawl onto that pyre and leave this world with him. Mammon’s tender squeeze on my shoulder reminds me that I still belong here and I have too many loved ones to leave behind. Mammon steps back and gives me space to say my goodbyes.
As I cup the cold cheek of my beloved, my engagement ring glitters brilliantly in the final light of the setting sun shining its warm beams through the trees surrounding our garden. The future we had envisioned, the dreams we’d shared with each other, are just empty, shattered promises now. My friends and family are the reason I find any strength to remain standing. It’s all still so surreal and part of me knows once this numb feeling wears away the true pain may very well crush me. I love you , I love you... I can only tell him in my mind because I can’t seem to find my voice anymore. I press one last lingering kiss to his cold lips before Mammon gently guides me back to one of the benches where he lets me take a seat next to Lucifer and Simeon.
I’m feeling grateful for this new Mammon. His presence has somehow given Lily strength to go through with her goodbyes of our Mammon and her Solomon. He seems a little different. Leila must have taught him to be more honest and open with her and James and now that transfers to Lily as well. It’s just what she needed today. After her goodbyes, he delivered her to my side.
We’re all waiting now for the ceremony to begin. Looking around, I see that everyone tries to mingle our two broken families together. Mammon and Leviathan are sitting on the next bench from ours, having some sort of discussion. Perhaps about money that Mammon still owes Leviathan. I smile a little, I know this can’t be the case. But one day, no doubt. Satan and Luke sit together with Lucien. They both seem to want to help him in his state of fallen angel, but not demon. Satan is probably listing off the sorts of spirits Lucien can allow, if not wanting to become a demon and Luke probably ensures that Lucien doesn’t have to do any of the sort and he will protect him. I smile again. The little Chihuahua. Asmodeus is talking with Leila. Knowing him, it’s probably about how lovely he thinks she looks with the rainbow of ribbons braided in her long hair. One ribbon for all the fallen. Leila just softly smiles, barely listening to him while she cradles the roses in her arms. Barbatos and Leila’s grandfather are standing at a distance, also having a discussion. I suspect their conversation is more about the Cult of Barbatos and the Sorcerers’ Society. I would join them, but so far Solomon hasn’t kept me out of the loop during the investigation and Lily needs me more, right now.
The sun has left the garden now and the sky really starts to darken. Leila stands up and goes around, lighting the candles that we are holding in our hands and that are placed around us on the ground. Protecting each of them with a spell so that the flames won’t go out or set the environment or someone’s clothes on fire. Pandora lets out a delighted cheer as the dancing flames give a beautiful glow on everyone’s faces, while the ceremony will now begin.
Solomon invites each of us to have a personal thing to say. Being it a prayer, a blessing, a story or wishes. Everyone can be who they are. It is all very informal and not at all what I expected from a Human World funeral. Well, I suppose that Solomon and Leila aren't anything like the average humans. Maybe it is more common in the Human World Magical Society to send loved ones off to the next journey like this.
“I respected Solomon for his knowledge of TSL and our shared passion for TRPGs, I’ll miss our chats but I’ll especially miss the way he made our Lily happy, no matter how much it made me jealous.” Leviathan says, avoiding looking at Lily as he does so. “Mammon was a scumbag, he died before he paid me back everything he owes me. But he died a hero and I’ll miss that moron more than anything.”
“Rude.” Mammon mutters. “He better not be expectin’ me to pay those debts.” Even though he scoffs he seems affected by what Levi said, a blush staining his cheeks and neck. It must be very uncomfortable for him and Solomon. “Yeah, well Levi was a real pain in the ass.” Mammon says, following Leviathan. “But uh, he was my best friend and he died a hero too. All my brothers did.” He confesses, and I’m really shocked that this Mammon is willing to admit so much despite his obvious embarrassment. “I swear that I’ll protect our family.” He glances my way but I know he’s not speaking to me, but the other me. “I won’t let your sacrifice be in vain.”
After this, Satan reads us a poem from the book he’s brought with him. I can tell he is more trying to lift the spirits of us survivors, rather than wanting to linger on what’s happened. That would only serve to stoke his anger and he already hardly knows how to contain his Wrath ever since that day.
Simeon follows his example by saying some sort of prayer, encouraging us to look forward. I suppose he means well. I can see it working for our humans, Lucien and Luke, even though it’s in general not the sort of thing us demons appreciate.
“Mammon drove me crazy, but he knew how to party and I was jealous of his modeling ability.” Asmodeus sniffs as if he’s loath to admit this, especially in front of the living Mammon. “But he was a good older brother and I’m so grateful to him for saving our Lily.” He sends a flirtatious look to Solomon before continuing. “I’d have lots of things to say about Solomon but I don’t want to make Leila’s grandfather blush.” He says, winking before he sits back down. He receives a stern look from Leila next to him, but then he makes her smile a little as he gives her hand a kiss. I’m glad to notice that those two seem to be able to cheer each other up a little.
Not everyone feels like sharing something. James and Leila just place a couple of colored roses on the now closed caskets and stand for a moment hand in hand together. Lily just wants to be held, though I see she feels moved by what everyone else is saying or doing. Beelzebub isn’t a demon of many words. I know he just finds comfort in being together now with the whole family. Belphegor seems to be asleep. But he still offered to hold Leila’s baby for a moment while James was placing his roses with Leila and let them have their moment together. Pandora seemed to be very happy to be held by him. It must be strange for her that the people who she thinks are her fathers are not doting on her the way she’s accustomed to. She lets out a little protesting sound when James takes her back on his own lap.
I have my own speech prepared, of course. I have a lot to say about our family and the events and the future. So much, that after ten minutes I hear a gentle cough from Leila and I feel that was a subtle command to me to wrap it up.
Once everyone has had the chance to have said their say, Solomon summons a flame in his hand. “I wish I could find the right words to say to you all. This is a difficult loss for all of us. I just only know this one thing to say to describe my own hope for our future together.” He steps towards the pyres and sets them ablaze with the words. " The phoenix hope, can wing her way through the desert skies, and still defying fortune’s spite; revive from ashes and rise. " It’s maybe a spell, maybe a promise. But whatever it is, it symbolizes what has happened to us. We’ve been attacked, we’ve been torn apart. But we will rise. I feel encouraged by these words.
Leila has placed her forcefield - that we have come used to by now - around the pyres so that we are all protected from the heat and sparks. As the fire roars, she starts softly singing.
The valley green was so serene
In the middle ran a stream so blue
A maiden fair, in despair, once had met her true love there and she told him
She would say
"Promise me , when you see, a white rose you'll think of me
I love you so
Never let go
I will be your ghost of a rose"
Her little baby cheers in excitement on James’ lap. Her big baby eyes reflect the flames as she witnesses the great fires in front of her. We all smile a little. Her innocence lightens the heavy mood. Maybe she is right. In essence, this has been a beautiful ceremony.
Her eyes believed in mysteries
She would lay amongst the leaves of amber
Her spirit wild, heart of a child, yet gentle still and quiet and mild and he loved her
When she would say
"Promise me , when you see, a white rose you'll think of me
I love you so
Never let go
I will be your ghost of a rose"
Maybe Leila sings this song for us, or maybe for herself. Whatever the case, the words touch us all. The promise that we will never forget our loved ones. That we will always love them.
When all was done, she turned to run
Dancing to the setting sun as he watched her
And ever more he thought he saw
A glimpse of her upon the moors forever
He'd hear her say
"Promise me , when you see, a white rose you'll think of me
I love you so
Never let go
I will be your ghost of a rose"
After she’s finished with her song, Leila creates a memorial from the remains of the two pyres, using her magic. She turns the remains into a stone pedestal engraved with the words ‘ I love you so. Never let go’ . She arranges 10 white roses into a beautiful bouquet, representing all who lost their lives in both of our realties. All except Diavolo. But nobody can blame her for not wanting to include him in the memorial.
She places the bouquet of roses in a glass case on top of the stone pedestal. She casts a preservation spell over it all and the roses inside the case bloom as if they were freshly cut, forever fresh, never to wilt. The everlasting dew drops on them shimmering like gemstones in the light of the candles.
It’s a beautiful memorial, when she’s finished. Simple, but meaningful. No outsider will understand the meaning, but all of us present do. Whatever the future will bring for my family, we will never forget our lost loved ones.
Speaking of family… I need to figure out a way to bring back the ones that have wandered away from us. To make them feel truly welcome. After all that has happened in the first 24 hours after their arrival, I have to admit that I’ve made a couple mistakes with that. I assumed they would submit to my rules, like all my siblings always do. But I had underestimated Leila’s strong personality. Too much like Solomon… We are now two seperate families. We need to become one again. And I need Leila’s help in establishing this, even if it’s hard to accept for me.
I’m wandering the garden alone for a little bit, with Pandora in my arms. I’m not feeling up for talking with anyone right now. I don’t have anything to say that wouldn’t result in either making me angry, frustrated or incredibly sad. I just want to give Pandora a few happy moments with her mother without crying.
The ceremony went well. I feel a sense of being at peace, for the moment. It won’t last long, I know, so I need to cherish this moment and give it to Pandora. I’m glad that people seem to understand and leave me alone for a bit.
Until Solomon catches up to me, a serious expression on his face. He takes Pandora from me and cuddles a little with her. “I have to go to the Devildom tomorrow, Leila.” He tells me. I nod. I guess I knew that this was coming, but I feel uneasy about it. He’s been staying with us at our new place all this time and I feel I still need him to. “You know why, don’t you?”
“Yes.” I confirm. “You have to reconnect with all your 72 demons…”
After I reconnected with Lucifer a few days ago, Solomon explained to me how our pacts are still active and waiting for us to restore them. The one with Barbatos was automatically restored as soon as he opened the void for us and led us into this reality. But we have the choice if and when we want to open ourselves up to the other demons of this reality. On one hand I’m happy knowing this, on the other I’m not ready to accept it. Although I do feel happy with the feeling of having my pact with Lucifer restored and I know he feels the same way. Even if he has trouble understanding me, right now.
“Only 70 now.” Solomon chuckles optimistically. “Don’t worry, I’ll be coming home almost every night, I promise.” He returns Pandora to me and calls. “Karasu.”
The big crow - that is actually a demon - comes flying over and lands on his shoulder. He’s been with us all day, but Lucifer has forbidden him to show his other form in the Human World for some reason. To me he looks human enough. Maybe it’s just because they don’t like him? He’s been hanging out at our new home a lot too. I think maybe he feels drawn to Mammon, but he won’t admit to that. Today he came to give his respect to his old master. I think he was very respectful towards everyone, staying on his branch in a tree. Only cawing once when the pyres were set ablaze. Only I and Barbatos heard him say his goodbyes to Mammon in his crow-language.
“At your service…” Karasu mocks Solomon.
“Good, that’s what I like to hear.” Solomon mocks him in return. “I’d like you to-”
“Actually,” I interrupt Solomon, knowing what he is going to ask, but I don’t need some spy demon watching over me. I’m perfectly capable of watching over myself and the others in our house. “I have a request for Karasu myself, if he’s interested to hear it.”
Karasu laughs in his crow-language and immediately hops onto my shoulder instead, making Pandora cheer for seeing the big animal so suddenly so close and Solomon laugh for Karasu’s questionable loyalty. “What is it that you want old Karasu to do for ya, sweetcheeks?” He says in his crow-language on purpose, as if we’re about to share some big secret.
“I just want you to watch over Solomon, while he’s in the Devildom restoring his pacts.” I tell him, trying to ignore the stupid nickname, but I can’t help but frown, so he cackles. “And keep me up to date, since Solomon will never tell me about the things that would worry me.”
“Tch. Humans and their soft hearted requests. What makes you think I would?” Karasu challenges. “What do I get in return?”
“The promise I won’t cook you and feed you to Beel?” I challenge back and both he and Solomon start laughing now.
“PFFT. You got guts girlie, threatenin’ the Magnificent Karasu!” Karasu guffaws. “But actually, I’ve already got an assignment to watch Solomon as soon as he steps into the Devildom. And honestly, while he’s in the Human World too…” He tells me with a sly look, if a crow can look sly.
“What?” I look surprised. Why? Who?
“Oh yeah,” Karasu enjoys telling his news. “From the big boss himself! Apparently Lord Diavolo doesn’t trust new Solomon!” He cackles, taking a good look at my reaction.
I frown at him, my eyes blazing, feeling extremely offended. How dare Lord Diavolo not trust my grandfather! HE is the one who can’t be trusted!! Solomon places a hand on my shoulder to calm my anger. “It will be okay, Leila.” He just tells me.
“Sure!” Karasu says cheerfully. “I’ll give you the reports ya need, Hot Mama. And I will tell Bossman only the good bits about old Solomon here that he wouldn’t want to hear and in return, you give me a kiss, deal?” He says that last part in crow-language.
“I don’t make deals with demons.” I tell him. And especially not with a demon like Karasu, who is a bit strange. Although he’s nice to Lily, so he can’t be all bad. “But I do make agreements.”
“So I get a kiss?” He laughs again in his crow-language, rubbing his beak softly against my cheek.
“Of course not.” I tell him sternly. “I don’t feel like kissing any demons. But I can pet you, if you like…” I pet him the way I did the first time we met. I know he likes that. And true enough he closes his beady eyes in enjoyment, as he sits on my shoulder. I think we’re having an agreement. For now. Until he changes his mind again. He seems like a real troublemaker of a demon. “And tell Lord Diavolo what I think of him in crow-language and I’ll have a treat ready for you next time you come visit us.”
“AHAHA! I think you and I could be good friends, Pretty Lady.” Karasu laughs again, while Solomon sends me a disapproving frown.
“Leila, that is not the way to make peace…” He tells me sternly, but he can’t keep the glimmer of mischief out of his eyes himself.
After everyone has gone home after the funeral, I find Lily sitting on her bed alone, seemingly staring off into space. “Lily.” I call out to her softly from her doorway, she turns her head slowly, as if waking from a dream. Her eyes focus on the box I’m holding before meeting my own.
“Solomon brought you your things…” I grimace, seeing the way she flinches just from me mentioning his name. I know it will get better for her with time, but it's still hard to watch. In another time and place I probably would have hexed her to forget and filled her memories with happier things. But Lily has changed me, and since I know she wouldn’t approve of such devilish methods, I’m bound to only provide the simple comfort of a brother who loves his sister and wishes to see her smile again.
I sit next to her on the bed, wrapping an arm around her as she rests her head against me. We sit in comfortable silence for a while before she slowly starts to go through the items in the box.I can’t help noticing that she’s wearing Mammon’s favorite ring, on her finger next to her engagement ring that she still wears.
“You’re wearing Mammon’s ring.” I point out. She stops rummaging through the box and her cheeks flush. I think maybe she has the wrong idea, so I clarify. “He would be proud to have you wear it.” I tell her gently.
She gives me a relieved sort of smile as she fidgets with the ring, her eyes sad. She no doubt used magic to make the ring fit. Then her eyes widen in memory and she digs in her pocket. “I saved this one for you.” She tells me with a sweet, hopeful smile. When I nod in acceptance, she casts a spell that makes the ring fit my finger perfectly. As I suspected, I’m proud of the adept little Sorceress she’s becoming.
“I think I’ll give the third to Levi…” She says as if she hasn’t truly decided. “Unless he’s going to pawn it off to make up for the money he was still owed.” She wrinkles her nose at the thought which almost makes me laugh.
I stand, getting ready to leave. Then, remembering the list Leila gave me today, I smooth a strand of Lily’s hair behind her ear and lift her chin to meet my gaze. “You’re going to help me get our homes ready for our family, won’t you?” She’s been so withdrawn, and while it’s understandable, I think a project would do her some good. Something that doesn’t involve running off to Faery.
She gives me a small smile and nods in agreement. It’s not the usual bright, beautiful smile I wish to see on her face again, but it will do for now. I give her a swift kiss on her forehead before I leave her.
I return to the garden to the place where we held the ceremony earlier this evening and take a seat on one of the stone benches. Some of the candles are still burning beneath the memorial. Today went better than I thought. Even if there is still so much sorrow over the loss of our fallen, this place that we created together, this memory, is a positive one. Today has been the start of our new journey together.
I’m not surprised when a portal opens and Lord Diavolo walks through. I’m glad that for once he’s following decorum as he settles onto the stone bench next to me. “That’s a wonderful memorial. I’m sorry I couldn’t be here for you.” He says, his voice hushed.
I allow myself a small smile. It's moments like these that give me hope that our Diavolo will turn out to be a fit Demon King someday, one who can proudly accomplish his dreams. It’s horrifying to know what the other him has done in another reality, but I remind myself that we all have the potential to be our worst and best selves. I know this from my own faults.
“Thank you.” I tell him, in all sincerity. He could have shown up today or held it against us that we didn’t invite him, that I’d asked him to stay away as a personal favor. It renewed my faith that he does possess some measure of maturity. I need to redouble my effort in seeing that maturity flourish. But before that, my family comes first.
In hushed whispers we discuss the ongoing hunt for those responsible for the attack. My only regret is that I can’t spare the time to hunt them down myself.
The morning after the funeral I gathered my brothers and Lily around the breakfast table. We need to make plans to get the rest of our family back living with us, instead of half across the country where I can’t keep an eye on them. Some might think me callous and unfeeling so soon after our losses, but I know my family well enough to know that idle hands and minds will do none of them any good.
“Leila has given me a list of all the things they need.” I say to start our family meeting. “I personally was pleased to notice that we don’t have to make too many changes and…”
“Can I see that list?” Lily asks me, holding out her hand expectantly. I nod and give it to her. She starts reading out loud. “A bedroom for me and Pandora. A bedroom for James and Lucien. A crib for Pandora. A rental car for transportation. A car seat for Pandora…”
“Wait…” Belphegor interupts her to my surprise. “I don’t like the sound of this.”
“What do you mean?” I ask him. I thought that out of all my brothers, he would especially like to have Leila close as soon as possible. Why would he be against planning for it? He’s receiving more frowns from my other brothers.
“I mean…” Belphegor frowns at the list in Lily’s hand. “That it sounds like Leila doesn’t want to stay for long with us, when they come over. She asks for guest rooms and a temporary car. While we know she had a big private place for herself and Pandora before.”
“I agree with Belphie,” Lily tells me. “To have a comfortable life with us and feel welcome with us, she’s asking too little of us. Only the necessities for Pandora and the others. Nothing for herself…”
“If they have such a nice place where they live now, why would they want to come live with us?” Asmodeus agrees after hearing that. “We shouldn’t make them feel as if they’re just guests.”
I sigh and pinch the bridge of my nose. I specifically asked Leila for all their needs, didn’t I? To think I would meet someone just as proud as me… “Very well. We need these necessities at the least. What else…?”
Of course this question results in a heated discussion. Everyone has their ideas of what our new family members need. James needs his own kitchen and pantry, Beelzebub thinks. All of them need their own walk-in closet, is Asmodeus' opinion. They each need their own game room, according to Leviathan. Belphegor tells us that they all need a large private bedroom with a big fluffy bed and en-suite bathroom. I’ll think about that, it’s not an entirely bad idea. Still, Satan made the most sensible suggestion: He thinks that Leila would appreciate a private library or study to store her and James spellbooks and materials and a place to create their potions.
“I have an idea.” Lily says after having quietly listened to my brothers and their partially selfish requests. “Why don’t we renovate the entire east wing of the Manor? We don’t use most of that space. If we plan it right, we can do most of your ideas and I’m sure it will make them feel welcome.”
“Yes, that’s a good plan.” I agree, proud of her kindness and the way she considers all of my brother’s opinions, no matter how unworthy they are half the time. “I know the perfect person to be in charge of it all too.” I smile at Lily. I smirk as her eyes go wide.
“Me? I said I’d help but…” She says meekly as her eyes shift away from mine and I give her a more firm expression. I’ll not allow her to waste away in her grief holed up in her room day after day.
“No one else has a better grasp on what you and Leila and the rest need so that we can all live here comfortably. You will oversee this venture and keep my brothers from getting out of hand like only you can do.” I flatter her while speaking in a way where she knows well there’s no arguing with me on this. “I will be here of course to make sure it all gets done.” I let her know I’m not abandoning her to this large venture alone.
“All right..” She agrees, giving me a smile. It doesn’t quite reach her eyes, there’s a confidence she’s lost since losing Mammon and Solomon. I need to make sure she finds that confidence in herself again, hopefully this project will be the first step.
Unfortunately, with her agreement, my idiotic brothers break into another heated debate as they argue the merits of their ideas and whose idea will appeal to Leila and James the most.
I know Lucifer means the best for me. And I know he is right of course. I have a much better idea of what James and Leila will need, since I’m a human sorceress now, just like them. And I shouldn’t fade away in my sorrow... I just don’t know if I can muster the strength right now to put up with all my brothers. They all mean the best for us, I know that. It’s just hard.
Still, they all help me very well. Apart from their more outrageous ideas, we eventually draw up a plan for the renovation of the east wing of the Manor. It will be very nice. I will live there with James, Leila, Pandora and Lucien, once the Avatars have to return to the Devildom to help Lord Diavolo with his ongoing hunt for the last remaining cult members and of course, the daily running of RAD.
No more direct portal to my Devildom room, but that’s okay. We designed a safe room where Leila and Barbatos will create a special sort of portal. It will become semi-permanent. It will only open from our side and the room will be sealed with Celestial wards when not in use. We have to make sure no evil spirits can sneak through to bother Lucien.