“Diane, get onto San and run” Ba’al whispered.
“But…” she started to complain.
Without even letting her continue, Ba’al took her with an arm and placed her over the coyote’s back.
“Go and live, Diane” he said.
Diane cried, but she ordered the coyote to run. As they left the area, several explosions destroyed the neighbourhood. The Revenant District was on fire. Diane saw the whole town being attacked by hundreds of kitties, and quickly understood where she had to go. They went South. Survival depended on it.
Mary Clark and Merlin were exerting themselves to the maximum. “Stopping their attacks is not enough! We are going to be out of stamina soon, and that’s when they will get us!” Mary shouted.
“So what do you suggest?” Merlin asked.
“We need to reduce their numbers somehow” Mary suggested.
“We cannot reach them if they’re in the air”.
“Well, you are the frigging magician! You must have some trick for that!” Mary shouted.
“Oh. I do” Merlin realized, materializing a broomstick.
Mary took the broomstick. “You do defence, I do offense” Mary ordered.
She flew up, and pierced through the lowest flying Kitty. The corpse fell down heavily, cracking the pavement. Mary then realized all of the destruction that was happening. Her power spiked. In less than ten seconds, she had killed 30 Kitties. New Kitties kept descending from the mothership to replace the dead ones.
Ba’al got out of the rubble, and helped a few undead citizens get out. He saw Mary flying on a broomstick, piercing through the swarm of Kitties that kept descending from the mothership. And then, a cloud of ash covered his view. Ba’al looked around, knowing what was going on. He spoke to the undead.
“Get ready for a fight on the ground!”
A portal opened from the ashes of the Revenant District. Satan came out of it, commanding the Infernal Army. That was the last thing they needed, Ba’al thought, trying to think of a solution. He looked at the undead citizens in the area: there were just over a hundred of them, not enough to stop the thousands of demons pouring into the town. They needed to evacuate.
“Save the living citizens! Take them safely to the Caliph’s Palace!” Ba’al shouted.
The undead all moved swiftly. They went in different directions, looking for survivors. Ba’al saw them all go. He needed to earn them time, just so that they could save the rest. He faced Satan, and advanced towards him.
“Hello, Ba’al, we meet again!”
“Hello” he greeted, coldly.
“I see that you are having a battle against the Kitties. Looks like you are quite busy” Satan sounded amused.
“Yes, we are pretty busy. Why don’t you take the Infernal Army back home and we can discuss this at another time?” Ba’al suggested.
“Oh, I won’t hear any of that. Remember, I’m doing all of this for you” Satan stated, almost lovingly. Once again, realizing how it had sounded, he cleared. “No homo, though”.
Ba’al saw a window of opportunity. He had suspected something since the moment he had joined the ranks of the Fallen Angels, a couple of thousands of years before, but he had never said anything because Satan had always been quite ambiguous. He seized the opportunity.
“Satan, you don’t need to hide your feelings. I think, deep inside… I’ve always known” he commented.
Satan seemed startled. “What? What do you… I don’t know what you mean!”
Ba’al continued. “I know that you feel something for me. You have been hiding it for a long time now, but I think it’s time that you are true to yourself and to your feelings” Ba’al felt the undead moving through the whole town, taking survivors. A lot of people had died. He could not sense Diane. He contained his feelings.
Satan had blushed, his face red and smoke coming out of the top of his head. “I… I… you…” he stuttered.
Before he could do anything, there was a blast right next to them. It took them by surprise. The Kitties had sensed them and were attacking. Satan was infuriated.
“How dare they…! Attack the Kitties! Destroy them all!” he ordered.
Ba’al saw the Infernal Troops engaging in the fight against the Kitties. Now the forces would be matched better. Satan also joined the fight. Ba’al felt the undead taking the last few survivors of the town to the Palace. Not even 300 of them had survived. That was a 91% annihilation. He would avenge them.
It had been a while. Ba’al opened the two holes in the back of his armour, and he let his wings out. He flapped his white wings and flew towards the battlefield. Merlin was somehow minimizing the damage over the town. He looked extremely worn.
“All of the survivors are in the Caliph’s Palace” Ba’al informed. “The rest of the town does not matter, we will rebuild somehow”.
“Ok!” Merlin managed to say.
Ba’al noticed the exhaustion of his voice. He had exerted himself too much. He spoke a spell that surrounded the magician. His energy was restored. Merlin looked extremely surprised.
“But you are a Prince of Hell. That should not be possible”.
“It’s a long story” Ba’al smiled.
He then started to fly up, and he saw Mary Clark fighting against dozens of Kitties, alone. Something felt odd. Her energy seemed to be low. As the Kitties buzzed around her, she got hit by one of their blasts in the side. Ba’al accelerated and went through the group of Kitties like a dart, picking up a falling Mayor. He flew away.
“I… I killed 3105 of them” Mary managed to pronounce.
“You did really well” Ba’al said. “It’s just that there are millions of them in that mothership, possibly the majority of the Kitty population”.
“What now?” she asked.
“The Infernal Troops are fighting the Kitties, so we have some time. If we are lucky we will kill two birds with one stone”.
Mary’s eyes opened. “Satan came…?”
Ba’al landed on a spot far from the town. “Yes. But if we let them fight both armies will be extremely reduced”.
Ba’al started to treat Mary’s injury with spells. “The citizens…?” she asked.
Ba’al could not avoid using a grave tone. “287 confirmed survivors in the Caliph’s Palace, plus 104 undead. I’m worried about Diane. She is nowhere to be found”.
Mary let a tear out. “2817 deaths, and one disappearance… It’s OK, I’m sure Diane is fine. She is strong kid”
Diane got to the Orchard, which had not been attacked. She got off San, and they both walked past the Orchard, towards the South. Diane put her hand through the empty space before her, trying to feel for the entrance. The door opened and she saw her friend.
“I need your help” Diane cried. “Help me protect the Orchard”.