Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dead Rite chapter 13.03

There were a thousand demons flying through the upper airways of Hell, most zipping to and fro carrying messages from department and circle heads to their respective subordinates out in the circles. Hell was built on hierarchy and paperwork and generated more of both in a day than an average political office did in a month. Most of the messengers were devils and minor demons quite far beneath Jasfoup's station, relinquishing him of the need to even bother nodding a greeting to those he passed, but some were of equal rank and higher, necessitating the use of complex gestures to indicate greetings. He was rusty at some of these and hoped he didn't cause any offence – particularly to those demons who could formally request his dismemberment and dissolution.

He had to land well before the gates of the city and approach on foot. Dis was built behind an edifice taller than most gods, its walls punctuated by towers occupied by minor demons bred solely to intimidate; great hulking brutes that radiated a null-magic sphere, able to take down any being that tried to cross the walls without proper authority from one of the Nine – Lucifer and eight lieutenants. Jasfoup had no such authority and although he had the ear of Lucifer when he needed it, it was unwise to court the attention of the Lord of the Fall.

Instead, he queued with the snaking line of minor demons, devils and dignitaries at the fabled Gates of Hell, now restored and moved to the city wall where they were marginally safer from thieves trying to steal the inlaid pearls.

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