Kill. Feast. Kill. Feast. Kill. Feast. Kill. Feast. Kill. Feast. Kill. Feast.
The savage thoughts of a lowly scavenger, sometimes referred as a demon's demon. These are only thoughts that ran through its diseased head while it stood strapped against the cold walls. All it could do is open an array of sinister hisses from its plagued maw. Even without eyes it knows that prey is near. The prey, dressed in rubber hazmat suits, kept their distances from the volatile creature. One of them slowly waved a scanner side to side with the scavenger mimicking the same motions with its scrawny head. Prey was so close to the scavenger but it could never reach it. Its forked tongue wagged about for a taste of some fresh meat. It can hear them. The ears, while singed into its molted flesh, listened to all the sounds: the walking, the talking, movement of instruments and tools from one end of the room to another. It sensed the vibrations in the air with each sound and step, and the prey was oblivious to the notion that the scavenger was indeed watching them.
Its snake-like nostrils flickered up and down. It can smell them. It could smell the sweet scent of the prey's perspiration running down their necks and faces, even behind their bio-masks. The prey was afraid of it. They should be. It kills without empathy, or remorse. To say it kills without reason would be an inaccuracy. The only reason it would have to kill is to try and satisfy that relentless hunger that begged endlessly in its shriveled belly.
The scavenger also knew that they weren't alone. It sensed more prey nearby, but they weren't in the same room. There was a barrier separating them, that much it knew. Four figures were safeguarded behind a wall of glass. The four watchers were Lu, the devil himself, along with his trusted council of Lilith, the succubus secretary, Legion, the dark sorcerer of the Underworld, and Scrugs, the devil's assistant that cowered behind them all. Posted at the large metallic doorway were a pair of demon guards that stood at point and guarded their feared overlord. All their eyes locked onto the imprisoned scavenger and it, even without eyes, stared back at the protected prey.
"It's terrifying!" The bat-like demon Scrugs quivered.
"It's disgusting!" Lilith retorted.
"It's very pathetic, that's what it is." Lu scolded his staff. "What exactly are we supposed to be looking at, Legion?"
"This was once a miserable soul that was to endure decades of torment has now converted into the creature you see before you." Legion bellowed. "The guards in the vicinity found it halfway through its transformation while it fed off a few of the souls surrounding it."
"When did this soul arrive?" The devil asked his secretary.
Lilith flipped through her files and answered. "About a week ago, boss. Barely served its sentence."
"And how long ago did it turn?" Lu asked his adviser again.
"Four hours ago." Legion continued. "In my long life I've never seen a soul become corrupted by Hell's influences so fast."
A sound of thunder inside the safe room rattled their ears followed by a brief blinding from a flash of light. From the flash appeared a woman with large energized wings very similar to Michael's wings yet the light was made of pure silver. The wings retracted back into her thin body and she greeted her brother.
"Yo Lu!" Gabi called out. "Your wife wanted me to tell you hurry your ass up!"
"Halt!" Cried both the demon guards. They instinctively aimed their over-sized guns at the back of Gabi's partly shaved head. "Unauthorized personal in the area!"
"Chill, I'm blood." The archangel groaned. "Lu, tell the stormtroopers here to stand down!"
Lu sighed the usual irritable groan yet motioned his hand that ordered the guards to lower their rifles. "Everyone, my older sister Gabriel, the archangel. Gabi, my trusted council: Lilith, Legion, Scrugs."
"Whoa. So you're Legion, aren't you?" Gabriel spoke to the great arachnid demon. "Father used to talk about you a lot. Gotta admit, I'd thought you'd be a little uglier."
"To what displeasure do we owe for your visit, archangel?" Legion asked with all six pairs of eyes leering at the archangel.
"She's staying at my place for a bit." Sighed Lucifer.
"How unfortunate." The demon sorcerer added.
Gabi laughed for a moment then noticed the scavenger in the other room. She walked up to the glass and watched as the two demon scientists carefully took notes about their latest experiment. "I take it back, that is uglier than I imagined. What's its back story?"
"The back story, as you said, there may be some new form of infestation among the scavengers." Legion lectured. "Hell alone no longer needs to corrupt the broken minded, now something else is infecting them. Look closely at its neck."
Gabi squinted her eyes real hard to visualize what the great demonic sorcerer was suggesting. Lu, Lilith, and Scrugs joined in on observation as well. One of the scientists attracted the scavenger's attention by lifting some raw meat above its head, which forced the creature to desperately lunge at it repeatedly. They all saw around its throat were three distinct markings that formed the shape of an incomplete 'Y'.
"Are those puncture marks?" Gabi inquired.
"It was bad enough that these souls could potentially turn into these things." Lu commented. "Now there's something out there that's spreading the disease even faster. Any theories into what's doing this?"
"I'm afraid I do not know." Legion answered. "I fear that something much deadlier has evolved from these creatures. It is imperil that we find this source and eliminate it. It could infect more souls, as well as other demons."
"Sounds to me that all you gotta do is find the hole they hide in and nuke it." Gabi confidently stated.
"You think we haven't tried that already?" Lu argued. "We've been searching their hive in the deepest parts of the Inferno in the last thousand years, and still we've found nothing."
"If you can call shining a flashlight in the dark corner and then calling it quits searching, then yeah, sounds like you've done an excellent job at it." Gabriel retorted.
"Oy!" Lilith quickly jumped into the argument. "Watch your tone around the boss!"
"Your boss is also my brother." Gabriel said. Her aggression now directed towards the secretary.
"Down here, he is king," Lilith continued her defense. "And you best give him the respect he deserves."
"Last I checked, you demons don't get respect, not since after the war. Lucifer keeps his role as king only because the Council and my Father, The Creator, allows it. Meaning I have the right to talk back against you but you have no right talking back to me like that."
"Best be careful, deary. This lover can turn into a fighter real quick."
"Did you just threaten an archangel, serpent?"
"No, not threaten. Promised!"
"Is this really the best time to be doing this?" Lucifer growled. His scarlet eyes glowing redder than usual with all the anger building inside.
Soon all the demons and the sole angel argued with one another inside the compounds of the safe room. The scavenger hissed once more, only this time louder than before. It could hear tension behind the barrier, the prey were fighting amongst themselves. This could give it the opportunity it needed to strike them when they least notice, if only it could escape from its restraints. The scavenger jerked both its arms around inside the leather straps to no prevail. It tried kicking its scrawny legs but they too restrained against the wall. The two scientists hunkered around a wide, metal table and watched as their boss and his cohorts squabbled with the female angel.
"Who's the blonde one?" One of the scientists asked.
"Gabriel, one of the members of the Archangel Council." The other answered.
"An archangel, eh? She's actually kinda hot."
"No way she'd going to go for you."
"Heard she was into hens not roosters."
"And that just makes her even hotter."
The arguments were growing more heated on the other side, and the scavenger could hear every word. The ramblings rang through its exposed lesions around its deformed head. It wanted a feast so bad that it was willing to brake its own body just to break free. It yanked harder and harder at the straps. It twisted its body into uncomfortable angles to try and wiggle its way out. Something felt off. The strap on around its right wrist felt looser than the other. It knew it was a sign, an opportunity for an escape. Its attention was averted back at the two scientists. Knowing it wouldn't reach the prey on the barrier's side, but it'll settle for the prey in the same room. The scavenger screamed at the top of its rotten lungs, which greatly unnerved both the scientists.
"Alright, this thing is making me nervous." One declared. "I'm gonna sedate it."
The demon scientist picked up a long syringe from the table. Carefully watching it struggle in the binds he paced toward the monster. This was it. This was the moment the scavenger wanted. The demon got close and prepped to apply the syringe into the scavenger's neck. One of the binds snapped off and a furious claw swiped at the scientist. He felt the razor sharp nails cut through the suit and his jugular. The demon scientist gagged as a pool of blood leaked onto the cold floor. He tried desperately to cover the wound with both hands but his life had faded from his body. The scavenger clawed at the other strap and hissed at the surviving scientist.
"HOLY CRAP!" He screamed. The survivor ran towards the glass barrier and pounded for their attention. Lucifer, Gabriel, and the others halted their babel and watched in horror when they noticed the scavenger breaking the restraints. The demon scientists pounded his fists harder against the wall, crying out for their help. "HEY! SOMEONE HELP! HELP! PLEASE! FOR THE LOVE OF GAH-"
The scavenger pounced on top the smarter demon and bit into its prey's neck. Its sharp fangs punctured through the hazmat suit with blood squirting onto the glass barrier. The intelligent demon screamed his dying breath only to be drowned out by the savage sounds of flesh and tendons ripped apart. The higher level demons continued to watch as the fellow demon was devoured. Lilith covered her mouth and Scrugs fainted from the sight of all the blood. Gabi glared at the creature then turned to one of the guards.
"Is that glass bullet proof?" She demanded.
"Good to know." She reached for the guard's holstered pistol and pulled it out. Steadying her arm, she raised the weapon at the feasting scavenger. The creature gulped down another chunk of the trachea and looked right at the archangel. It shrieked and she fired. The first two rounds shattered the glass barrier followed by the next five puncturing into the scavenger's shriveled body. The scavenger tumbled backward when the shells hit and laid motionless. The savage thoughts in its head faded permanently.
Everyone stared at the horror left behind by the attack. Two dead demons, one dead scavenger, and plenty of blood. Gabriel felt her hand tremor after killing off the creature. She tossed the gun back to the guard and returned to her regular state. "So, how about that dinner, Lu? Your wife mentioned a place in town called Dante's. Sounds cool. Let's take the elevator up."
Gabi walked away from the others, who continued to stand by. Legion waved his large hand and sparks of fire blazed all over the corpses, which reduced them to a pile of ash. The fires activated the sprinkler systems and sprayed the laboratory down with gallons of water Lu slowly followed his sister out but paused, turning to face his trusted friends. His red eyes blazed through darkening room.
"Find whatever is causing this." He ordered. "Kill it before more become like them. If you have to turned up the heat down here, do so. I want them all exterminated. If there is a scavenger that can infect souls, and possibly us, what could they do to those on the surface?"