Opportunistic Infections

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22450066 - portrait of a steampunk man over grunge background.

The smell of the boy child was delicious but not quite suited to the demon Kronos’ needs. He could sense that the boy was cautious and had many closed passageways in his mind. He was so  young and already he knew the nature of men-already the boy was smart enough to be afraid.

The girl, however, was chubby and sweet; Her little body fresh and clean and wrapped in linen and bows. Kronos couldn’t help but giggle gleefully as he perceived that she was a small thing full of ambition and utterly intrepid. He had waited in the dark for many years -so patiently -for an opportunity to break free of the enchantments of the Magician Ghostraven, and here it was. He couldn’t have conjured a more fitting quarry.

Over time he had tested his prison thoroughly, he knew where it was impermeable and where it would bend. Ghostraven had been very clever in his design. Two rotating  prisms created a merkabah casting wardings and enchanted seals from above and below and held him in his less powerful corporeal form. Beyond those, Ghostraven had sculpted the walls so that any light, even the faintest spark, would reflect holographic enchantments- a continual dance of protective shadows -throughout the darkened room and any reachable dimension. The Magician had guarded him away with one final obstacle, a bit of over kill – in his opinion,  a giant Elderwood Door inscribed with the forgotten language- the old, old magic from deep within the ether. A single key, held by the Magician himself, controlled the lock to the room. Kronos shared this prison with many other cursed and unsavory items and it frustrated him to no end imagining what he could do if he could only reach beyond his confines.

Despite all of this, Kronos had discovered that he could reach out with his mind, though only the very simple or innocent could hear him.  It would be easy enough for him to reach the girl child, and she was all he needed.

She was playing with the boy, taking steps two by two and sliding down the stair rail. He could hear her giggling and nothing could have been more wonderful, and he planned. He would slip into her thoughts like a bore beatle before anyone could suspect him, and once inside her precocious little mind it would only be a matter of waiting and weaving.

Taking advantage of a moment when the boy was racing down the banister ahead of her, Kronos whispered softly into her mind: “I do so like your pretty dress. What is your name?”

The girl child looked about for the source of the voice, but could not find it.

“Oh! You are very pretty,” he almost purred. Gaining her full attention was perfectly effortless. He whispered and she listened. He called her down the long hall, her curiosity needing only the slightest fuel.

“My name,” she said proudly, “is Emily. Where are you?”

“Oh, I am here-but I am only a tiny dormouse. If you come toward my voice you may see me.”

“But I can’t see you.” She sulked,  “Oh! I know a story about a little mouse -her name was Scout! Do you have a name?” Emily searched the floorboards of the hall moving deeper and deeper into the shadows. She was  completely enchanted with her new little friend and paid no mind to her unfamiliar surroundings.

” My name is Dot. But I think Emily is a prettier name. I wish I was Emily with a pretty dress like you! Do you see me, Pretty Emily?” Kronos cooed and cajoled the little girl, he could feel her delight with his game. It was only a few short moments before she was standing in front  of the Elderwood door.

“Dot! Dot! Dot!” Emily sang. “Where are you little Dot?”

“Look under the door, pretty Emily, look under and see me!”

Emily scooted down onto her knees, and peeked underneath the Elderwood door, her eyes growing wide.


“Emmy! Emmy!” Young Amos DeVile called for his playmate. “Come on, Emmy. The Captain is taking us for cream sodas.”

Emily stood up, paying no mind to the dirty slashes marring the knees of her white tights, and ran to join her friend.

That night, Emily would sleep -and in her sleep she would dream of a grand machine that would take her across time and space.  A dream that would continue through her young life, propelling her toward a new future.

In the solitude of his prison, the demon Kronos laughed and laughed.

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