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The Devil's Plaything

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Demiurge exited the meeting room quietly, and watched as the Battle Maids of the Pleiades, Entoma and Mare turned the corner down the hallway.

Command of the operation had fallen to him (much to Sebas' unspoken yet obvious dismay), and he arranged for Tuare's rescue and the destruction of the eight hideout locations of the Eight Fingers gang, as well as the Six Arms enforcement group. He gleefully looked forward to every single one of them being ripped apart as they had collectively spat in the faces of the Supreme Ones by daring to lay a hand on someone under the protection of Ainz Ooal Gown, despite the fact that it was a lowly human.

Sebas' human, at that.

But he put that on the back burner; at the moment, there was only one person he wanted to tear wide open.

Demiurge was irritated enough as it was with the multitude of other things already plaguing his mind, but as he was giving instructions to the Battle Maids, Entoma and Mare, Shalltear saw fit to behave like a fucking five-year-old because she was asked to stand down.

"Killing this person is strictly forbidden. Understood, Shalltear?"

"Oh, ha-ha, make fun of the vampire, why don't you, jerk!" She sassed acidly.

The demon's blood boiled and he glared at her with enough heat to melt glass. He sadistically smirked response, concealing his bristling hackles.

He could not believe she put on such a childish display before his subordinates. Still, he continued with his instructions, and let it go.

For the moment.

But he would never allow such a disrespectful comment to go unaddressed. He didn't give a damn that she was a Guardian herself. He was the fucking Commander of Defenses for a reason, and he would not be slandered by the likes of her; by someone who dared to challenge the Supreme One.

Demiurge would not allow her her infantile behavior to throw a wrench in his meticulously conceived and compartmentalized plan; there was far too much at stake. Operation Gehenna was entrusted to him by Lord Ainz himself, and he refused to disappoint his Master. The demon would nip this problem in the bud before it took root.

He stood next to the door and waited; his blood a roiling red sea of rage swirling in his veins. As Shalltear Bloodfallen walked out, the last to leave, he silently stepped up behind her and clenched his hand over her mouth. Her muffled cry was stifled by his glove.

"If you EVER disrespect me before our subordinates again, I will see to it that you regret it." He venomously hissed in her ear, and then shoved her away from him, causing her to stumble and almost trip over her own dress ungracefully.

"How dare you threaten me!" She whirled around and spat, her crimson eyes burning red hot with rage. She stomped towards him, but he held his ground, not intimidated in the least. "Just you wait until I tell Lord-"

"Go right ahead!" He cut her off. "Tell him how you childishly belittled your commanding officer as he was providing instructions to his acting army in order to carry out the Supreme One's wishes. I can promise you, as far as Lord Ainz would be concerned, I disciplined you accordingly." Demiurge snarled through bared fangs, his unbridled rage summoning black Hellfire to lick at his heels.

He tipped his chin up.

"Do you really care to inform our Lord that you created a massive distraction for every person present?" The infuriated Devil added, his tail swinging like an agitated feline's. "What if one of our comrades was to fail in completing their task to the necessary specifications due to your little display causing them to miss an important piece of information?"

Shalltear was stunned and without a snarky comeback, for once in her immortal lifetime. She just stared at him dumbly, slack-jawed.

"That's what I thought." He sneered, his voice dripping with condescension, flicking his wrist back in her direction in a dismissive gesture as he turned his back and walked away, the flames diminishing. "Next time, think before you speak."

He left the adolescent vampire stunned and fuming in the hall; but she knew he was right. She had no ground to challenge him, as everyone present had witnessed her call him a jerk and chastise him for advising she stand down, as he was concerned that she would lose herself to her blood frenzy. His politely given order was not unreasonable in the least, as she was still too inexperienced and immature to control that side of herself properly. He did, however, assign her to mobile support duty, where she would be on standby throughout Operation Gehenna.

Still, not getting her way, she had behaved disgracefully.

While the Arch Devil experienced a frenzy of sorts himself when he could smell blood, he was experienced enough to keep himself composed and still make coherent decisions under its powerful influence. She, on the other hand, had completely lost herself and the series of events which followed led to her ultimately trying to defeat Lord Ainz, which resulted in her destruction. All which had could have been easily avoided if she had a firm grip on her blood thirst.

The Commander of Defenses would never take a chance on her again. As a Guardian, it was his duty to ensure the safety of his Lord above all else, and her carelessness had threatened just that.

As the demon evolved, his fondness for his comrades was no longer cemented into his programming; his demeanor towards each was now influenced by their attitudes, which had also taken on a life of their own they all evolved and developed just as he did, and if he felt as though he were disrespected, Demiurge would not hesitate in expressing his displeasure, whether through words or physical actions. Lord Ainz and his own creator seemed to be the only ones immune to his wrath, as his most hardwired instinct above all else, was to protect the Supreme Ones. Anyone who failed to do so was put on his proverbial shit-list; and Albedo and Shalltear were written at the top and in red.

When he was out of her sight, Demiurge stormed to the 7th Floor. He was beyond furious; black fury bubbled beneath his flesh.

There was only one person he could take his rage out on without consequence.


Demiurge felt splinters of irritation dig into his skin when he discovered that his pet had conveniently made herself scarce, and was not in her quarters on the Seventh Floor, nor in his personal chambers. He tracked her down by scent, which lead him to an empty wing of the dining area.

He turned the corner to find her tightly curled in the fetal position, facing away from him, and shaking wretchedly.

Panic clawed its way up into his chest, and the sudden surge of emotion unnerved him.

Was she hurt? Sick? Did someone dare to touch what was his?

He silently approached her, and the salty tang hanging in the surrounding air her told him she had been crying, and she reeked of sharp fear and anxiety.

She smelled like one of his farm sheep; ripe with terror and hopelessness.

The demon growled. He hated it when humans cried; it was the ultimate display of vulnerability, weakness. But the fear blooming all over her...it alarmed him. Why was she distressed enough to cry? Out of all of his pets, she had done so the least, and that was another reason why he favored her. Lillith's sustained brain damage gave her an atypically placid demeanor;at least in comparison to his previous pets, who were hysterical, and sometimes even hostile with fear when in his presence.

But now she was home, and his again. So why would she be so upset? What was she afraid of?

'What the-why the Hell do I give a damn?'

Demiurge's lip curled in a cruel sneer; he did not like that her state influenced him to wonder such banal things.

The demon scolded himself for feeling anything but furious and decided it did not matter, nor did he really care.

Above all else, he was angry that she had succeeded in inadvertently disarming him. He had fully intended to take his anger out on her, but here she was, acting as though he had already terrorized her.

She had denied him satisfaction.

"Get up." He ordered her, the snap of command in his voice sharp as a blade, but she didn't move. She continued to quiver like a frightened rabbit, and she let out a strangled whine, as though she were trying to speak but the words clogged her throat.

"NOW." He growled with mounting impatience, and his tail swung from side to side in agitation.

It was as though a ghostly hand was clasped over her mouth. She felt her ribs constrict as if bound by a massive python, and she strained to inflate her lungs. Her head was a hurricane of rampant fears spinning out of control, each one pushing her mind further into murky blackness. She wanted to uncurl her limbs and comply with his command; but she was frozen. Sounds that were near seemed to echo from afar, as if she was no longer in the body that lay paralyzed on the cold floor...

And now her Master had found her, and she was too broken to obey.

'He's going to kill me when he sees how useless I am. I'll be just another skull on his desk.'

"Pet! On. Your. Feet!" He ground out through bared fangs and permitted himself the small luxury of harshly shoving her with the heel of his shoe, just short of a forceful kick to the ribs, and she only twitched. "Do not test my patience."

She only trembled like a leaf, but didn't move. Her heart was hammering wildly.

The Devil's jaw worked and he narrowed his gaze, his scowl darkening from furious to thunderous. He regarded her dispassionately for the stretch of a few long minutes. Some detached part of his brain wondered if he should simply kill her for her insolence, and also considered if she could possibly withstand the intense strain of resurrection magic, should he follow through with taking her life as punishment.

He doubted it.

"Pet." He roughly prodded her again, and the demon was even more confounded that the familiar flicker of wicked joy was absent when his foot collided with her body.

In fact, it left him with an alien, hollow feeling. As though someone had scooped a small gap out of his chest, leaving a cold and aching dry-socket of emptiness.

That was extremely disconcerting. Normally, he drew a great deal of satisfaction from causing pain or discomfort when it came to his pets and humans. Watching them squirm with that glimmer of fear in their eyes was most appetizing to his predatory side.

But Demiurge gained none of this from his actions. The flare of pleasure he expected was replaced with...it was unfamiliar, whatever it was...as though that was the wrong thing to do in this situation? Like he wanted to take it back?

I only served to enrage him further.

He looked down his nose at her, and let out a huff of disgust.

Demiurge could not decipher what was the matter with her, or whether what ailed her was physical or psychological. He crouched down to her level, and rolled her over to face him. Her body was rigid with tension, and her heart was pounding faster than he had ever heard it. Her eyes were wild and glassy.

'No, NO! Not you...' His heart dropped into his stomach as his gaze flashed across her features. What he was met with was not a look of stubborn disobedience or defiance, but the unmistakable countenance of a shattered psyche, one of which he had seen on the faces of at least two of his previous pets. Both of which had shut down and withdrew into themselves before they found the only way out of his clutches...

Death.

'What do I do?'

Demiurge wracked his brain, but for the first time, was admittedly at a complete loss in how to proceed. His knowledge of human physiology and psychology was extremely limited. He did not know how to handle this situation, nor he did not trust the sadistic Neuronist with a medical examination, despite her knowing the in and outs of the human body better than anyone in the Tomb.

Lillith's wild eyes held a shimmer of pleading, and she quivered with fear, as though she knew she was failing to comply but needed his rarely gifted mercy. Demiurge smelled dusky dread rolling off of his pet, and a small spark of sympathy ignited within his heart.

'NO.'

Crimson rage flared to life and burned through his every vein, and he stomped out the humanistic emotion before it could smolder.

Demiurge hardened his heart once again with a clench of his fist, and relished the sting of his talons as they dug into his palm.

Pain. Anger. Those were familiar; safe to feel.

'She deserves no mercy.'

Even as he tried to convince himself that she was nothing but property, that she deserves no leniency despite her most vulnerable state, the demon resisted the overwhelming urge to...

"I do not have time for this." He spat hatefully, and Lillith felt palpable fury rolling off him like toxic radiation.

'Damn it.' Demiurge gathered the collar of her maid's uniform in one hand, and hauled her away from the corner of the room. She could only eke out a whimper of fear in her borderline catatonic state and the next thing she knew, there was a flash of purple light, and everything went dark. Coolness kissed her skin and it felt as though she had passed through a light mist; then she vaguely registered a dim golden firelight and ivory scattered about in arranged chaos, and the scent of burning wood stung her nose.

Lillith was suddenly in his quarters on the Seventh Floor.

'How...?'

He must have drug her through a portal.

Lillith distantly heard his shoes clicking as he strode across the floor, pacing away from her, and his voice faded in and out. He was speaking with someone via {message}. An all-consuming sensation of foreboding swallowed her alive, and it felt as though a lake of fish were swimming round and round in panic within her stomach.

'He's going to do away with me, look for someone he can pawn me off on; the highest bidder. I'll never see Tuare again.'


Demiurge was furious. He was confused. And he was beyond uncomfortable with the flood of alien emotions which ran rampant through his mind; and while he appeared relatively collected and composed on the outside, within he was enduring a maelstrom.

His slave was being disobedient, and despite this fact, logic told him it was not intentional. Something was genuinely wrong, and he could not in good conscience punish her for that. Even though he really wanted to; if only to unleash the anger he felt towards Shalltear, which spawned from the vampire's disrespect.

The demon was even more unsettled by an overwhelming drive, no, a bone-deep instinct to...he wasn't sure.

'Protect. Comfort. Omega needs her Alpha-' His normally dormant hindbrain was surfacing once again and trying to guide him, but the young Devil wanted none of it.

Demiurge had always had a firm grip on his baser Incubus instincts, and he employed magically enhanced suppressants to keep them at bay. For the past year, he made a point to up the dosage of it every six to eight months; as he matured, his Ruts would become more frequent and he was determined to not have one unless absolutely necessary, as it interfered with his work. But for the past three weeks, his suppressant seemed to be a mere placebo, as his nature was breaking through it to cloud and control his mind.

As to why this was, he was not absolutely certain, but he surmised his pet had something to do with it.

Demiurge needed help. He needed to get away from her. He needed to take a step back and evaluate why he was feeling anything other than rage at her failure to comply.

The demon messaged the one person he could think of who may know what to do, and the only one he knew could be trusted without question: Malphas.

{Hello, Demiurge. What can I do for you?}

{My pet...she- something isn't right. Did they do something to her? Did you notice any magical items on him? On the one who touched her?} Once he started, the words came tumbling from his mouth in a near panic.

There was a pregnant pause as Malphas digested his words.

{No, there was nothing like that. Why? What is wrong?}

{I do not know what is wrong. Her heart is racing, and she reeks of fear.}

Malphas hummed in contemplation.

{That's odd, the poor thing. Did you bother to ask her what was wrong?}

Demiurge could practically see Malphas' eyes roll. If there was one thing his brother harped on him for, it was his failure at basic communication.

Demiurge sighed heavily. {No, I didn't ask-}

{Hades, Demiurge. Why the Hell not? She could tell you better than I could.}

Demiurge growled in frustration.

{Because I do not fucking care.} Demiurge hurled back with a snarl, and drug his hand down his face. {But it almost seems as though she cannot speak anyway; as though her throat doesn't work, and she seems...paralyzed. I only want her to be al-function! And I cannot trust anyone but you with her.}

{If you do not care, why are you messaging me?} Malphas countered, and the younger Devil literally heard the smile in his voice.

Demiurge should have known that he could not lie and hide his unnatural distress for her present condition from his brother.

'You...you fucker.'

Malphas couldn't help but smirk, as he knew the array of insults which were no doubt running through the younger demon's head. Demiurge was probably calling him a 'asshole' or 'fucker' right now. The two Devils, while polite and refined in the presence of the other Guardians and Lord Ainz, were often crass with one another when alone, as most brothers were.

{B-because I'm...concerned.} He tightly and begrudgingly admitted. {She is suddenly disobeying my commands, but I do not think it is blatant disregard for my authority. I believe something is medically wrong. I've never seen her like this.}

Demiurge heard Malphas sigh, as the Elder Devil knew what his little brother was asking of him.

{Please...I- she needs someone who understands.}

The Elder Devil carded a hand through his mane. His brother would put him in such a predicament when he was actively making an effort to separate himself from the human.

How the Hell would Malphas ever look Lillith in the eye again, knowing what she sounded like when she came? Knowing that HE wanted to make her make such lovely sounds?

{You know I have never been good with...with this sort of thing. Suddenly I'm feeling-I-I don't know, but this is the worst time.}

It was unspoken, but Malphas knew what he truly meant.

'She's causing me to feel something unfamiliar, I am afraid, disarmed, and I am not in the right state of mind to even begin to process it.'

'Damn it all.' Malphas cursed to himself. But Demiurge needed him, and so did Lillith.

But what if he...?

Malphas huffed; he decided it did not matter. His own fears would have to be put on the back-burner, as usual. In trying to be selfless and prevent himself from imprinting on Demiurge's pet, and avoid the risk of her growing overly fond of him, he was in reality being selfish. Lillith was in need of someone with medical knowledge, and while he was not an expert by any means, he did know a little more than Demiurge. Malphas had cared for sick and wounded animals over the years, and he had learned a bit of healing magic along the way.

And what would happen if he did not take matters into his own hands? Her prognosis was likely grim.

{Alright. I'm on my way.} Malphas relented.

{Thank you, brother. I have to get back to work, but I'll leave it unlocked.}

Malphas groaned in exasperation when the message disconnected. And of course, Demiurge would leave him alone with her.

The elder Devil untethered the Bicorn mare he had been tending to and turned her loose back into the grazing field. He would have to finish trimming her hooves later. He dusted himself off and went into his house to gather a few tonics and potions in hopes that they would suffice for whatever he may be dealing with, and took to the sky.


A gust of relief left the Devil's lungs and he approached his pet, and he leaned down to scoop her up off of the floor. He did so carefully, at least in comparison to how he had drug her through the portal like a scolded dog; by the scruff of the neck.

The demon set her down on the bed, and he cupped her chin with his talons, and turned her face from side to side, staring into her eyes which simmered with fear, as though to analyze her for signs of illness; though he was indecisive as to what he was even looking for.

Demiurge was frustrated with himself for not more thoroughly researching humans and their needs, as he had told himself he should delve into a week ago, when he had discovered that they were not strictly carnivores. He felt incompetent in this situation, and that was something he had only ever experienced in the presence of his ruler. He was second only to the Supreme One in intelligence, and yet...he did not know what to do. He was clueless as to how to fix this, fix her.

Lillith gave little response, and her gaze was glassy, listless.

"I do not know what is wrong with you, so Malphas is coming to assess your condition. Obey his orders as you would my own." He said, his tone emotionless. 

Could she even hear him right now?

His nose wrinkled with what she construed as distaste as he looked her over, making it abundantly clear that he was displeased with the situation. "I expect you to stay right here until he arrives."

Demiurge abandoned her on the bed and he stalked to the large double doors of his quarters... and then he paused. The demon licked his lips and his brow knitted with contemplation. Finally, he swiveled to look back at her.

"Pet..." His voice softened just the slightest, and this, she heard more loudly than anything he had uttered to her; it rang through the fog clear as day. "...I ask that you do not do anything...drastic. Let Malphas check you over. He will take good care of you, if you let him."

She was still immobilized, but his words cut down to the very marrow of her bones.

The demon then quietly left the room.

'Do not do anything drastic? I can't even move...what does he think I would do?'

Was he seriously implying that he was worried she would purposefully hurt herself? And even if that was the case, since when did he care?

'Does he actually care what happens to me?'

Lillith did not know how much time had actually passed before she heard the beat of massive wings as Malphas lighted on the balcony, but the minutes, maybe even hours, were her cruelest adversaries as they stretched on; it felt like years that she was trapped within the icy prison of her own mind.

Malphas entered the room, keeping his movements slow and deliberate, as he would if one of his Bicorns was spooked. The massive Devil slowly approached the bed.

"What's wrong, little one?" Malphas asked softly.

But Lillith did not move, nor speak. She still couldn't.

'Please, help me... don't leave me here alone...'

His lips pressed into a thin line with concern.

"I'm going to take a look at you, but I promise not to hurt you, alright?" He said. "I just need to be sure you're healthy."

The elder Devil sat on the bed, and slowly reached for her, then gently pulled her toward him.

Lillith stared, unseeing, at his face. She appeared to be in a catatonic state.

Carefully, he peeled off one of his black leather gloves and felt her forehead with the back of his hand. While it felt warm, it was not feverish. Her skin was clammy, and she was sweating as her heart was racing a mile a minute. He smelled fear all over her, but no poisons or anything of the like of which his brother had suspected.

He recognized it as pure and simple panic.

She was having a panic attack, and it was severe enough cause a stress-induced catatonia.

He knew this, because he had suffered through one himself after his exile. Had it not been for Marlianken easing him through it, he would not have known what he had experienced, much less how to treat it. The succubus was his salvation during that time. 

Luckily for Lillith, he had exactly what she needed.

"I'm going to give you something to help you calm down. It will not be harmful, and will help you relax and prevent your thoughts from dwelling on what is troubling you. It wears off after 48 hours." He advised, and pulled a glass vial out of his jacket pocket. It contained a dark blue liquid.

He popped the cork out and tipped her head back. Malphas tentatively gripped her chin and brushed his thumb over her lower lip to encourage her to open her mouth, and she did not resist when he poured a few drops in.

A jarring minty taste exploded over her taste buds, and she jolted.

"I know, it's terribly strong stuff." He soothed her. "Can you swallow for me?"

She wanted to jump right out of her skin at its effervescence, but she managed to work her throat enough to force it down as he asked. It was powerful, like a breath of winter; it seemed to freeze her from the inside out, and just when she was convinced her blood had solidified into ice, it suddenly blossomed into a beautiful golden warmth which glowed in her veins.

The tension in her rigid body, as well as her overwhelming anxiety seemed to melt away, and her thoughts grew less murky. Her breathing steadied, and her heart rate began to regulate itself. The demon stroked her hair in a sweet gesture of comfort, and she gradually relaxed.

It settled into her bloodstream and she felt a bloom of euphoria blossom in her stomach, and it almost felt like an opiate akin to morphine, whatever he had given her. She felt cozy inside, like her heart and soul were wrapped in a warm, fuzzy blanket. But she was clear of mind and did not feel numbed by the heady effects of a drug.

She only felt good. Safe.

'That's some good shit.' She thought, and she breathed a sigh of relief. Lillith looked up at him, and her limbs slowly uncurled from her body.

"Feeling better?" He smiled warmly at her.

That was when she reached for him and his soft words.

Lillith slowly nodded, and licked her lips, which had chapped during her ordeal. "Th-thank you..." She then suddenly wrapped her arms around him. "...for being so kind to me."

Malphas froze. It was completely unexpected, and he was not accustomed to voluntary affection. Demiurge abhorred it, but Malphas thoroughly enjoyed it.

Her gratitude, her touch, it was real, genuine. She reminded him Marlianken, and he felt his heart tighten.

'Don't do this to yourself. Don't get attached.' He warned himself not to reopen that festering wound which was dark and deep enough for him to dig his fist into. 

"Of course, little one." He whispered and hugged her back. How could he refuse her simple comfort? "Do you mind telling me what had happened? We were both worried about you. Are you alright?"

Lillith bit her lip and blushed, admittedly embarrassed to have caused such fuss.

"I... I overheard the Battle Maids talking, and-" Her voice cracked, and she tried but failed to swallow a fresh wave of tears. Malphas had seen her weep before, but never like this - this was more than crying, it was the kind of desolate sobbing that comes from a person drained of all hope.

"Poor little pet..." He cooed, and held her to his chest. "It's alright, you can tell me."

The steady drum of his heart and his warm embrace seemed to relax her, and he patiently waited for the flow of tears to ebb into hiccups. Finally, Lillith managed to pull herself together.

"I-I learned that what happened to Tuare may be partially my fault." She finally choked out.

Malphas blanched. How could she believe such a thing?

"It was not your fault. There is no-"

"It was." She insisted. "Demiurge tortured one of the gang's members, and he used me to extract information from him. He cast some sort of spell, and tricked him into believing I was his sister, and that he-he would rape me if he didn't tell him what he wanted to know. They knew what we did. That's why they came for us."

Those forbidden fears, the ones she kept had trapped behind the routine of her daily duties, ate away at her defenses like corrosive acid every night before she fell asleep or in quiet moments when she was alone. They seeped into the foreground of her mind, demanding to be reexamined again. Maybe she should have stayed in her room when she heard the prisoner's agonized screams. Maybe she should have refused to play into the illusion Demiurge created to extract the information. Maybe she and Tuare should have questioned why they could not join Sebas in delivering the grain, and maybe they should have stayed under the table when they intruders broke in.

No amount of analysis would turn back the clock, though. Tuare was gone, and Lillith had played a part in it.

Malphas was dumbstruck; he could not (and yet, he could) believe his brother had involved her in an act so monstrous and twisted. When he had visited her in the dreams, he could only sense what she felt; so, he knew when she was close to breaking. But he did not know what Demiurge had actually done to her, except for when he injected her with the drug, as he could feel the effects of the substance through her.

"Listen to me, little one. If this was anyone's fault, it was your Master's, not yours. I'm sure it was not something you were thrilled to be involved in, and that you had no choice but to obey." Malphas said adamantly. "I know how Demiurge can be; you were not wrong for putting your own safety above the prisoner's. What may have happened as a later result could not have been foreseen. Do not blame yourself for things that are beyond your control."

Lillith gave a weak nod in response, but could not help but still feel that she was to blame.

"If it makes you feel any better, he is organizing a rescue effort as we speak." He offered. "And if we are being completely honest with one another, he is all too often a colossal asshole to me too." Malphas said dryly.

Lillith cracked a small smile at that. "Can't pick your family, unfortunately."

The Devil's lips curled upwards in a wry smirk.

"An unfortunate truth." He agreed. "While we are not brothers by blood, sometimes I could believe we actually are related with how we squabble like siblings." He remarked with a light shake of his head.

"Wait...you are not actually brothers?" Lillith asked with a puzzled look. "But you look so much alike!"

"Indeed, we do." Malphas chortled. "But he was designed after me. As Guardians, we were created by a Supreme Being; so, I suppose in a sense, we are brothers, and Lord Ulbert, in a way, is our father. Though the way I see it, Demiurge and I are more like two sides of the same coin, if you will." Malphas explained. "We were not birthed from a womb; we were forged in the way a sculptor shapes marble."

"You're a Guardian too? I haven't seen you around here. Which Floor is yours?" She probed.

"This one. It was once under my protection...but not anymore." Malphas regretfully sighed, and Lillith heard a tinge of weary longing in his voice. "When Demiurge was created, I was put in charge of the Bicorn stables in the Royal Capital instead, and transferred."

"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to bring up-" She started to apologize for reminding him of what must be a painful chapter of his life, and then Lillith was suddenly overtaken by a wave of drowsiness and yawned; but Malphas knew it wasn't because she was bored with what he was saying, but the tonic he gave her taking full effect. She was small and had a high metabolism, so as he expected, it hit her fast.

"I-I'm so sorry, I don't know why I'm so tired all of a sudden..." She apologized again, and awkwardly fidgeted with her hands as she was unsure how to complete her previous sentence.

"It's alright. That tonic will knock you for a loop and make you sleep for a few hours. But you will be fine, and so will Tuare. I promise." Malphas advised, and patted her head affectionately before rising from the bed. "Now, get some rest."

He needed to leave, before-

"W-wait...! Please..." Lillith pleaded, and lightly tugged his coat. "...can-can you stay with me, until I fall asleep?"

'Damn it.'

He looked down at her, and she looked up at him through her long, feathery lashes which were still dotted with little jewels of tears. She looked so lost and afraid and lonely.

"Please, Malphas?" At the sound of his name spoken so sweetly on her tongue, he found himself to be suddenly powerless, and rooted to the spot. Somehow, this tiny little female had completely disarmed and stripped him of all his willpower, and all it took was one look of desperation.

'Omega needs you.'

How could he possibly say no?

"Alright. Until you fall asleep." He surrendered, and plopped back down on the bed next to her. Her eyes lit up and she smiled at him, and it was his undoing.

Malphas then knew he would never be able to deny her anything, and understood why not even Demiurge had it in him to kill her.

"Thank you." She softly murmured, and she laid down beside him, resting her cheek on the side of his thigh. "I- I just don't want to be alone."

He heard her voice shake on the last word, and his heart clenched.

'Believe me, I know. I've dwelt the dark shape of solitude for years. I know what it is to feel abandoned, and only to know closeness for the purpose of being used when it is convenient...and Hades, I'm so tired of the lingering taste of loneliness on my tongue.'

As she began to doze, to both his horror and delight, she shifted to fully lay her head over his lap, and was fast asleep in minutes.

'How the Hell do I get out of here without waking her?'

He did not want to disturb her.

"She's going to be the death of me." The demon muttered.

Malphas brought his talons to her cheek and gently swept away the locks of gold which had fallen over her eyes. Her face was relaxed and serene in slumber, and so small and delicate in comparison to his massive hand.

Damn it, she was so little and sweet and fucking broken. Broken like him. Every fiber in his being wanted to protect and care for her.

He knew was losing himself; he was a drowning man in a roiling sea and Lillith, a beautiful siren made of the sun's rays and dove feathers, was sure to lure him to his end.

The demon swallowed thickly, and carefully cradled her head and then slipped his long leg out from beneath her. When he braced himself to rise from the bed, a sense of déjà vu overcame over him.

Malphas lazily stirred and awoke in a tangle of hot, well-muscled limbs. The sweet, high warble of meadowlarks singing their morning song serenaded his ears, and as cheerful as the music was, the dawn's early golden light streaming through the stained-glass window also brought a towering sense of dread.

'No... it's too soon. I'm not ready.'

Alas, there was no possible way he would ever really be ready, though. Not for this.

The demon's tail twitched with displeasure, only to find that it was almost entirely immobilized as it was tightly corkscrewed around twin steel plates, and the scorched scent of wildfire and sandalwood accented with thick, dark spice told him that he was in Demiurge's bed. The elder Devil cracked his eyes open just to be sure he wasn't dreaming, and was pleased to find his younger brother sweetly curled into his chest and his arms possessively wrapped around him.

This reveal was quickly followed by the faint pound of a headache. It was the first time Malphas had awoken before Demiurge had the chance to furtively slip away, so he would gladly take the painful punishment if it meant finding his brother in a state that he would rather not be caught dead in.

If it were not such a dark day, their romantic position would have thrilled him to no end. However, the absence of Demiurge's normally iron-clad inhibitions regarding affection outside of lust served as a bitter reminder that his deadline was upon him.

Malphas' memory was murky, but he faintly recalled binge drinking himself into a stupor with Demiurge, and even splitting a vial of pure opium with him. He and his brother chugged as much alcohol as they could stomach without getting sick, and once that buzz dulled, they smoked the drug and spent the night high off their asses and Rutting as though there were no tomorrow, in an endeavor to numb themselves and forget about the earth-shattering news they had received just three weeks prior.

Malphas was to be escorted this afternoon to his new home in the Royal Capital, where he was to maintain the Bicorn Stables there. He was being uprooted from the only home he had ever known, stripped of his title as Seventh Floor Guardian and ripped away from his brother.

Demiurge was still fast asleep, but Malphas was now wide awake.

'I don't want to leave. This is my home.'

But that wasn't what hurt the most.

The elder Devil squeezed his brother in a tight hug, and he felt Demiurge's muscles flex and tense beneath his skin as he stretched awake.

"What will I do without you?" Malphas lamented, and gently tilted his brother's chin up with a claw to meet his gaze. He stared intently, his sapphire eyes roamed over and studied Demiurge's regal features and dazzling diamond eyes, as if he were trying to imprint his brother's visage into his mind; as though he truly feared he may never see him again. Malphas then sieged his mouth in a bruising and passionate kiss, and Demiurge moaned softly into his lips and cupped his jaw with his claws.

"I don't want to leave you behind." Malphas languished when they broke apart.

"And I don't want you to go." His brother replied, and the tremor of regret in his voice twisted Malphas' heart into knots. The elder Devil rolled them so Demiurge was beneath him, and their tails maintained their serpentine embrace.

"I don't know if I can do this..." Malphas confided, and roughly brushed his neck over Demiurge's to smear his scent over himself. He wanted to be able to smell like his brother, to carry his scent to his new and painfully empty bed to make the transition less agonizing. Something needed an aroma of familiarity, to smell like home or he would never sleep again. "I... I'm so..."

'I'm so attached to you, you're my everything, my heart is breaking. YOU are my home.'

"I know," Demiurge said quietly, and as Malphas gazed down at him, he knew that Demiurge understood what he wanted to say, but didn't, for both of their sake. This was excruciating enough without the words being spoken.

Malphas' eyes were no longer sparkling with that exuberant light of humor which Demiurge had always found so endearing. Their normally gleaming facets were uncharacteristically dull, and they were now roiling oceans of sorrow, their depths endless, dark and swallowing all sunlight. It unnerved him, and he swallowed around the lump in his throat and his chest tightened with an alien emotion. "I know, Malphas..."

'Don't let them throw me away...' His eyes pleaded, but Demiurge was as devastatingly powerless in this decision as he was.

The elder Devil claimed Demiurge's lips again, and he curled his hand around his nape to deepen the kiss. Malphas poured his entire heart into that gesture;

'I don't want to go. Come with me. I'm hollow without you. I can't breathe. I need you. I NEED you. My mate. My love. My other half. I can't live without you.'

There was so much unresolved and unsaid, but they were out of time. Malphas just hoped that Demiurge could not smell the salt of the single tear that slipped free from his eye.

For once, Demiurge showed Malphas mercy, and did not scold him for this display of affection.

Not even Demiurge was that heartless.

'I love you. This is going to break me.'

And it did.

Malphas swallowed a whine, and couldn't bring himself to leave Demiurge's bed. It had been so very long since he had been here; been home. His jaw clenched as he fought his sinuses from burning with tears, and decided he would stay with Demiurge's pet for a little while longer. The demon stretched out behind her, and laid on his side. He gathered a fistful of the comforter and brought it to his nose, inhaling the scent of his brother, which was now laced with his pet's sweet halo of lilies, orange blossoms, and peaches.


Lillith awoke a few hours later, when she became acutely aware of a heavy hand on her hip, and a hot breath behind her ear.

Her eyes snapped open, and her heart began to race when her memory came flooding back, and she realized it was him.

'Oh shit, oh shit, oh-'

She felt his soft lips press onto her neck, and she tensed, expecting the sharp of his fangs to follow, for her skin to break and blood to flow, but it didn't. Instead she felt a light suck and an enticing sweep of his tongue, and...it was strange, but undeniably pleasant- no, pleasurable.

Lillith wondered if this was what a kiss felt like.

No one had ever kissed her, anywhere, before. Even in the brothel, the clients did not do such a thing. They just violently beat and raped her, and that was it.

But what he was doing was gentle, free of hostility- the nature of his caress was based more in giving, rather than taking. She decided she liked it; his tongue swiped over her in a brief lick and it sent her senses reeling.

His steady breathing pattern told her he was still asleep, but it didn't change the fact that there were only a few layers of clothes between them, and the contact he was making with her was more than just friendly.

A heat rose in her cheeks and her heart pounded.

Demiurge would normally be biting and ripping her clothes away to take what he wants by now (not that she didn't often find his dominating nature arousing), but this...this was different.

A sound rolled through his chest, more akin to a purr rather than a growl, and she realized as it reverberated through her back that he had, at some point, curled his entire frame around her, and somehow managed to wedge a thigh between hers. She gaped, staring straight ahead, wide-eyed at the fireplace which was now smoldering into a dim red glow of dying embers.

Lillith swallowed a gasp when she noticed the tensing of muscle under her, which belonged to an arm he had wound around her ribs. She was completely surrounded by him, the solid wall of his body at her back.

Malphas exhaled contentedly and pulled her closer, and she felt a distinctive, warm firmness against her rear.

'Fuck...'

The Arch Devil was hard. And huge.

He murmured into her neck, but she couldn't make out what he said. He suddenly rolled his hips forward, and she bit back a whine. A throbbing heat was rapidly unfurling between her thighs, and it was laced with guilt.

'Ohhh...I think I want it-want him...but he can't possibly know what he's doing...'

He was asleep, surely, he wasn't doing this on purpose, and it would be wrong to...

Enamored hands then traced over her curves, and Lillith's heart thundered so hard in her chest that she was sure it would wake him. She jolted at the chill of the steely plates of his tail as it coiled around her ankle and calf.

Malphas groaned throatily as his groin pressed into her, and the way his hot mouth glided over the tender flesh of her neck set her skin aflame.

His embrace was hot steel, and his fingertips slid upwards...

His massive hands then carefully cupped her breasts, and her nipples quickly stiffened into tight peaks beneath her dress under his gently massaging palms. Lillith's eyes rolled back into her head; the reverent touch was exquisite in its languid softness. His clawed thumbs brushed over the peaks, tentatively rolling the sensitive nubs around and she whined. Demiurge almost never touched her there; she had no idea how good it felt- until now.

She was soaked through her panties.

"Oh, Gods..." She whimpered.

She needed to touch herself, but her Master would be so angry if she did. He would somehow know.

He always knew.

She needed to leave before she did something that would get her in trouble. Lillith wriggled a bit to see if she might be able to peel him off, but a soft "Beautiful Omega..." passed his lips, and then one of his hands drifted from the swell of her breast, down her midsection, and her breath hitched in her throat as it traveled lower, all the while his hips rutted slowly as his breath huffed hotly into her ear.

She should have made more of an effort to pull away from him, but there was a primal hunger inside her which was nearly foreign in its desperation, and she bit her lower lip to keep from crying out as she ground herself on him ever so slightly, only meaning to seek a little bit of relief.

'Yes, please, I need it, need you...'

Her eyes squeezed shut, her body rolling with every thrust, and finally, his hand slipped over her thighs. Lillith turned her head and moaned into her pillow as her flesh was ignited by his touch.

He massaged the tender flesh, inching closer to the apex of her legs, and his hips started pushing faster. The bulge against her rear was hot and hard and insistent against her backside as she ground against his thigh.

'I shouldn't be doing this; I'm going to get in trouble-'

But his fingers grazed so softly over her nipple, and he held her to him as though she were something precious, rendering all arguments regarding morality of the situation invalid.

"Lillith..."

She pressed her lips together to withhold her gasp. He was dreaming of her?

Lillith. He murmured it like a mantra, a prayer.

Malphas didn't really stir when he awoke, but it was obvious when he did. His strong fingers flexed harder (but not uncomfortably) over her breast, and his chest expanded in a deep breath as he inhaled the intoxicating scent of her arousal which hung around him like a thick, heady fog.

Lillith froze, torn between the burning need to come, and utter mortification that she had allowed this to go as far as it had.

"Lillith..."

She felt fire licking up her spine at the sound of her name in his low timbre.

Lillith knew he could smell it; how wet she was. There wasn't any point in pretending. "I-I'm sorry," She whispered with a tremor in her voice.

'Oh, fuck...'

"I sh-should have w-woken you-" She swallowed thickly, her tongue fumbling her words.

"It's...it's alright," He practically moaned, maddened with want. The air around him was anointed with the aroma of lilies and orange blossoms, laced with what could only be construed by his hindbrain as pheromones which mimicked that of an Omega, mere days from heat.

"It's not your-" He exhaled a shaky breath, and his hands were shaking, but he had yet to let her go; he still clutched her to him, almost possessively. "Not your fault..."

She tried to compel herself to pull herself away, but she was still so unsatisfied, so needy. She moved to get up, but he held her fast to his chest, and her breath caught when his fingers clenched, as though of their own accord, against his will.

She gasped, and she heard him swallow, like he was fighting himself to release her.

"I'm...I'm going to move," He declared, as if he were trying to convince himself that he at least maintained a tangible shred of willpower which would allow him to release her from his grasp.

He shifted slowly, and she slid along his thigh with the most perfect, beautiful friction, and she couldn't cage the moan that fled her throat, nor could he bite back the sound he made...

That wanton cry that left her lips crashed into and shattered his final wall of resolve like a tsunami, rendering him helpless to resist.

Lillith found herself wanting to see him, wanting to taste and touch him, let him fill any part of her he desired, let him do whatever he wanted to her-as long as he took the throbbing ache away. But he held her securely to him, determined to keep her hips aligned with his.

"Malphas," She gasped, squeezing both of her thighs around his own in desperation, and he hissed through his fangs, his resolve crumbling like sand as her pheromones obliterated his rationality. "I'm sorry, b-but please, I need-"

"I know what you need. I can smell you, little one," He rumbled, and the way his voice darkened with desire sent a thrill skittering up her spine.

Her scent of arousal was so thick and potent and enthralling that Malphas could practically taste her on his tongue, and it made his mouth water.

"I can smell how wet you are."

Lillith whimpered submissively, riling the Alpha in him, and his hand abandoned her breast as he shifted behind her.

'No, don't go!' He was going to leave. 'I'm so stupid, he and Demiurge are too close, how could I think this would be okay?!' He was going to tell her Master, and she was going to be in so much trouble-

She heard the soft susurrus of fabric and leather and a light metallic clinking, and her pulse pounded at the base of her throat and thudded behind her eardrums with the titillating knowledge that he was not leaving, but unfastening his belt.

"Fuck..." He bit out and then she heard a visceral sound that reminded her more of Demiurge, and it was followed by one of flesh against flesh, and she knew that he had slipped one hand inside his trousers. "Hades, you smell so good..."

Just when Lillith thought she couldn't possibly be more turned on, the Devil proved her wrong by performing the most scandalous action she could perceive.

There was a rumble in his chest, something like a rough purr that she felt deep down in her bones, and her channel clenched uselessly with a need to be filled.

"Malphas, please...I n-need you to..." She begged shamelessly. She wanted some part, any part of him inside her, possibly more than she had ever wanted anything.

The demon removed his thigh from between her legs and she practically sobbed at the loss of friction.

"Don't worry, I'll take care of you." He promised, his voice rich and resonant. The demon then retracted his talons and rucked her dress up to shamelessly slip his hand into her panties, and he rolled his fingers over her little pearl with just the perfect amount of pressure, and a loud gasp fled from her lungs.

"Mmmm...is this because of me?" He purred in appraisal of how obscenely slick she was, and then he teased just the tips of two fingers through her folds, and he exhaled a shaky breath when he imagined how she would stretch to fit his shaft.

Her reply was a frantic, breathy 'YESpleasedon'tstop!', and he let out a low, pleased growl. She keened when he worked his beautifully thick fingers into her heat, drawing forth a gush of slick, her wetness making an absolute mess of his glove. She felt his other hand against her back, now stroking himself at a furious rhythm.

She felt his lips suckling at her nape, and she was beyond caring that she was probably going to be violently whipped for this. She needed this; needed what he was giving her.

But there was no way Demiurge would not smell him all over her.

Malphas' breath was ragged and his muscles were taut, and Lillith was little more than instinct and sensation now, pressed as close to him as she could be, taking as much as she was able- desperate to feel that relief that she knew climax would bring.

A towering pressure was building, one that she felt in her belly and singing through her blood.

"Malphas, please, I'm so close-" She begged, and his fingers pumped in and out, then withdrew to push through her folds and circle her clit briefly before dipping inside her plush heat again. Lillith could feel the sticky mess she was making, and she would be mortified if she were not so turned on. She hardly knew him, he was her Master's brother, and this was so wrong, so-

The demon ground his fingers in particularly deep, searching for that place inside her that would make her scream. When he found it, the tension shattered and she soared, and came hard with a wail on his thick fingers.

"That's it, good girl..." He groaned viscerally. "Such a good little Omega..."

She had no idea what an Omega was or why he was calling her that, but something primal within her preened at his lavish praise, nonetheless.

"You want more?" He growled heatedly in her ear, and she could only nod and whine.

'YesPleaseAnythingAnythingYouGiveMeI'llTake' She thought mindlessly. Demiurge said to obey him, and she wasn't about to turn anything he offered down.

The elder Devil shifted behind her, hooked his fingers through her panties and tugged the soaked scrap of lace aside; Lillith cried out loudly as she felt the burning, bulbous head of his cock press against the slippery wet of her entrance.

"Want this?" Malphas hissed, and he reveled in the filthy moan that tumbled from her lips when he teasingly slipped his length back and forth along her soaked folds, spreading her moisture.

"Oh, gods, yes...Malphas, yes..." She pleaded. She wanted, no, needed it; needed to be filled, to feel the thick slide of his cock as he split her open. She wanted to be good for him, wanted to please him.

Lillith threw caution to the wind, and no longer cared what Hellacious punishment she might face for her actions.

Malphas lifted her leg and slowly, tortuously pushed his scalding hot girth into her, inch by agonizing inch, and Lillith gasped hotly at his size. He was big, a hair's breadth from being too big— stretching her around him as he sank into her blissful heat, his fangs scraping along her nape. Her walls quivered around him in shock, as he just. Kept. Filling her. When he finally bottomed out, their voices entangled in a rapturous moan.

"Holy Hell..." He swallowed thickly as he tried to maintain control of himself, to not explode then and there; she felt the massive Devil shudder and pant against her nape as her channel involuntarily clenched around him.

"Oh, fu-fuck, you're so big..." She bit out. Lillith struggled to breathe; Malphas was longer than his brother and nearly as thick, and it felt as though the air was crushed from her lungs just to make room for the heavy weight of the eight solid inches of steel he sheathed inside of her.

"I promise not to break you in half..." Malphas chuckled, and she felt herself drip around him with his words. "Hades, you're so small and tight..." He seethed through his fangs on a sharp inhale. The demon wasted no time, and tentatively curled his hips into hers.

Lillith's mouth fell open in a broken moan and she arched against him; the tight slide of his throbbing shaft was the most exquisite of torture. He lazily moved in and out, stretching her and letting her go; he was graciously giving her a chance to adjust to him, and taking his time with her, all the while gently nipping and brushing his lips over her neck. He held her to him almost tenderly, with one arm across her chest and the other gripping the soft roundness of her hip. The massive Devil was fully aware of his size and brutal strength, and he was being so careful not to hurt her.

"Such a sweet little pet..." He murmured into her hair, his voice rich, dark honey she could practically feel dripping down her skin. "You're taking me so well."

It seemed impossibly too soon, but Lillith already felt another orgasm already barreling towards her. She tensed and a low whimper sounded in her chest, and her fingers dug into the hard muscle of his forearm to cling to him for dear life, and the devil responded by nuzzling her sweetly.

"Are you going to come for me again, little one?" The demon rumbled in encouragement, and began pumping into her faster, finding a rhythm and depth that stole the breath from her lungs.

Hell yes, she was. The heavy drag and pull of his massive member against her swollen walls, the gentle scrape of his sharp fangs over her nape and his salaciously saccharine words were just too much.

The molten heat pooling in her lower belly started building to new heights.

"Malphas," His name fell from her lips with shaky moans which grew louder and more wanton. She was on the edge of an explosive release; she could feel it, blinding and pulsing and searingly hot.

Fuck, she was going to come so hard...

Malphas grinned against her skin when he felt the flutter of her silken walls, signaling she was on the precipice. "Good girl, come...come on my cock."

Lillith jolted awake with a ragged cry and gasp, and a heavy, wet pulse throbbed between her legs as she violently came around nothing. In a panic, she immediately flopped over, and while the sheets were ruffled where Malphas had once been behind her, he was now gone. She gingerly smoothed her hand over the place where he had once lain, and it was cold.

'How long was I asleep?'

Her heart thudded wildly against her rib cage, and her panties were absolutely drenched.

"It was just a dream...within a dream..." She mumbled to herself. "Wasn't it?"

She honestly couldn't be sure. If he had the ability to enter her dreams, she could not rule out the possibility that what just happened was more than wishful thinking.

Then Demiurge would not know what she had done. She was safe.

For now.