Supernatural Science Fiction posted June 22, 2011 Chapters:  ...7 8 -9- 10 

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Steven's search for Esther/Doc prepares to battle

A chapter in the book The Glass Cat Eye

Lord of Witchcraft

by amahra

 (Chapter Nine)

His watch showed two hours to midnight. Steven searched for his beloved with longing in his heart that mingled with the vengefulness he felt for her kidnappers. The floor plans Doc had given him seemed a godsend as he walked within a few feet of the last empty room. As Steven turned the corner, he quietly gasped; a guard placed in front of the room door meant only one thing–Esther. The guard’s black hooded cloak didn't hide his tall, muscular frame. His stern facial expression shined of duty and honor like a Marine inclined to lay down his life for his country. Steven knew getting past him wouldn’t be easy.
Then like a flash of light, he broke towards the guard, crashing into his side and knocking him to the floor.  He adjusted his body to execute a head scissor lock, but was surprised how quickly the big man scrambled to his feet. Both eased in close and assumed a defensive stance; they moved in a circular motion as wrestlers would in a ring. The man threw a punch that connected to Steven’s brow, causing him to bounce off the hall wall. He quickly followed that with a left hook that caught Steven on the tip of his chin, reeling him to the floor. He stumbled to his feet and shook his eyes clear. Steven resumed his position and saw a right-cross coming that swished passed his right ear. He struck back with a crippling kick to the knee that bent the man down to his eye level, enabling Steven to do a leaping head butt. While the man wobbled in a daze, Steven locked him in a stranglehold from behind–cutting off his oxygen and leaving him facedown and unconscious.
Hoping no one heard the commotion, he looked up and down the hallway before entering the room. Turning the bright gold door knob, he opened and eased through the door. The room was empty except for a cot; it had no windows, and the room bore a heavy chill. Esther, nude and hiding under the cot, not knowing what was happening outside the door, looked up at Steven with glassy doe eyes and a faint smile.
“Steve,” she said with a hoarse voice.
“Steve’s here, baby,” he said tenderly.
He signaled her to stay put while he went back to the door to peek out; when it seemed clear, he carefully, as not to revive the big guy, eased off his opened cloak. He walked back and kept his eyes away from her nakedness, holding the cloak in front of her as she rose from the floor. He wrapped it around her. She shivered under the cloak as he held her.
Esther noticed a raised bruise above his right eye; she gently turned his cut chin towards her to get a better look.
“Oh God…you’re hurt.”
“Don’t worry, honey, the other guy don’t look too good either.”
“I’m so glad you’re here,” she said.
“Doc is here too, but he won’t let me help him destroy the Ouija Board. He wants me to get you out of here. I know you don’t know what’s going on, and it’s no time to explain.”
“No. I do know. That girl who comes and makes me drink this nasty spiked tea, told me who Madame really is and why they want me. They also know you and Doc are here and what Doc is up to. Madame laughed, and said you’d come for me. She said Doc is a fool, he’ll never defeat Lima. That’s what she called it.”
“Lima,” Steven repeated curiously. “Honey, we got to go.”
Just as they rose from the cot, the door flew opened. There stood Madame Reece, dressed ceremoniously, with six of her cloaked goons behind her, including the big guy who was still nursing his torn knee and sore neck. He looked at Steven with murderous eyes.
“Oh–shit,” Steven said under his breath. 
Two goons rushed in–grabbed a handful of Steven’s coat in the back of his neck and jerked him out of the room and down the hall. Esther, Madame and the others closely followed, with the big guy limping behind.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
It was ninety minutes to midnight. The room bore all the signs of an interrogation chamber–empty but for two chairs that sat in the middle of the floor. Several tall, muscular men stood against one wall with their arms folded across their chest like seven foot genies waiting for their master’s command.
Madame Reece sashayed back and forth; her full length hooded robe trailed behind her like the black train of a gothic queen. Her robe was the blackest of velvet: on the front, displayed seven red rose Chinese frog closures and button knots;  the back of it bore the image of Tiamat...the Dragon Goddess of Primal Chaos. She clapped her hands once very loud;  two of her goons brought Steven in disheveled and bruised; they threw him at her feet and stepped back. Esther, with saddened eyes, who was bound to one of the chairs, could only look on.
“Well, well, Mr. Crane,” Madame spoke sarcastically, “it seems we’re always meeting under the most fortuitous occasions.”
Steven looked up; his black stare fixed on her pale, cold face as she spoke.
“Maybe not so fortuitous though,” she continued with a smirk, “since we all knew you’d come and try to save your precious little cunt here.”
She threw Esther a chilled stare. Esther raised her chin in defiance and stared back at her.
“What are you going to do with us?” Steven blurted.
Straight away, a black boot blindsided him on the left side of his face.
“Quiet, you bastard! Speak only when you’re told!” said the goon who kicked him.
Steven cringed, doubled over and moaned.
“You leave him alone! I’m the one you want!” Esther belted out.
“Shut your mouth cunt!” yelled another henchman. 
“No. Let Mr. Crane speak. Perhaps it is time he and his darling little Esther know exactly what we’re doing here,” Reece said menacingly.
The men all smirked and glanced approvingly at each other. Steven didn’t like the sound of that.
“But if you tell me, you’ll have to kill me?” he asked rhetorically,
“Obviously, but not right away,” Madame joked.
The men chuckled.
“Then I’d rather not know.” Steven sighed.
“But Mr. Crane, you’ve come so far–breaking into my basement, not once but twice. Wouldn’t you like to know what all your hard work was for? It’s the least I can do before your untimely demise. Don’t you think?”
“Alright. I deserve it. But not Esther. Let her go. Please!”
“Let her go?  Let her go?  You idiot. You really don’t know what you’ve stumbled into–do you?”
“I know alright. You’re going to sacrifice her for some stupid demon,” Steve said bitterly.
“No. Not just any demon, you fool. But to our Lord...Azi Dahaka."

A hush came over the room at the mere mentioning of his name.

"Is he the one who tried to kill me?" 

"No. She was weak, incompetent;  allowed you to escape.  My spell banished her for a hundred years," Reece said proudly.

"Then who is this demon?"

"He is the Lord of Witchcraft and High demon of unimaginable magic. We worship him as the great spirit of vengeance and deceit. Only a high ranking witch like me is even allowed to summon him here. Soon, he will come and endow me with magic so superior, I’ll be the most powerful witch in the universe. Under my rule, the earth shall be my footstool and all flesh shall tremble at my feet.”
As Madame spoke, a chill crept over Steven’s body at the sight of her. Her face showed ash white; her green eyes bore the glitter of a serpent. And in the corner of her mouth ran small amounts of bloody foam. Steven glanced over at Esther. They both knew whatever Doc was planning, he’d better do it–and fast.


I would like to thank jgrace for the artwork "God's Crystal Ball."
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