A Demon and a Pagan God Walk Into a Church…Oops, I mentioned that a BTVS person would be in the last chapter, but due to length I had to cut it and she’s actually in this character…sorry, when I write so much so quickly I get confused :0
Disclaimer: I have a contemporary writing style and trying to write 1600s Scottish dialogue ain’t easy, luvs. So I hope you don’t mind my missteps when they occur. I proof each chapter but *shrugs*. Also, in this chapter my two supernaturally inclined folks speak much like they do in the series, but that was more so for a humorous affect and to keep them in character. Plus, one of them can time travel so I’m sure he knows all the slang of each and every decade until the end of time…. ;)
January 1, 1700
She awoke that afternoon in the bowels of the church, a dark and dank place that smelled sour by nature and currently smelled like five frightened women. Each of them were shackled against the wall and forced to sit in their own waste products. Each of them bore signs of abuse and each of them wore a forlorn expression. Even Elspeth, the strongest of them all, appeared at a loss.
“Cousin, what is going on?” Lenore asked frantically upon waking. “What have they decided to do with us?”
“Connor has decided to burn the five of us at the stake in the morning,” Shannon answered when Elspeth didn’t. “The whole village must know about it now – including our children.” Shannon had two teenage sons and her despondent voice indicated that she was thinking of them now.
“B-but, surely someone must be agains this?” Lenore asked in a pleading voice. “Our families at least?”
Ellsie let out a choking sob. “I overheard Connor say that our families are too fearful to stop him, lest he declare them witches as well.”
Oh god…Lenore was never going to see her children again. This was it. She wondered if this was what her mother had felt before she died during Lenore’s seventeenth year.
Wait…her mother was still alive. Where had that thought come from?
Lenore sighed. Regardless, it did not matter at the moment. She focused her magic to snap open the iron chains that bound her, but nothing occurred. “My magic!” she shouted in both surprise and fear. “I cannot access it!”
Kensie, silent until now, nodded. “I saw Connor surrounding us with crystals; they are laying on the floor. I believe he is using them to suppress our powers.”
“And thus he has sealed our doom,” Elspeth finally sighed. “As long as these crystals surround us, we are helpless.”
Lenore just squeezed her eyes shut and tried to tell herself that this was just another one of her lucid dreams – dreams that felt so real but were just the byproduct of her overactive imagination.
But it, unfortunately, wasn’t a dream.
Hours passed and eventually an unknown woman with dark brown hair that hung in loose waves around her face walked in with a large tray of food. “Greetings, prisoners!” she called out cheerfully. Surprised to see another face - especially an unknown face, Lenore inspected her carefully. She had beautiful unblemished skin, wore typical servant apparel, but noticeably wore a grant emerald pendent encased in gold – something that was quite atypical for a servant.
“Who are you?” Elspeth asked sharply.
“Oh, just your friendly neighborhood prisoner feeder.” Off their bewildered looks the woman happily chatted on. “I was sent from Edinburgh to help with the church sacrifice, er, execution, or whatever you call it. Anyways, I’m here to look after the prisoners.” She held up a loaf of bread with a cheery smile. “Hungry, anyone?”
Lenore’s mouth salivated at the idea of food. She had fasted, as did the others, twenty-four hours prior to the spell and was now starving for nourishment. “Yes, please,” she rasped; her voice was dry from lack of water.
The woman clucked her tongue lightly as she delivered food to each woman. “Honestly, I just cannot believe that your husbands are letting you get murdered because you’re witches! You know, back in the day you would have been worshipped and admired. Such a shame.”
“Yes…” Lenore trailed off in confusion. She was unsure why a woman sent to help lead them to their deaths, likely by the main church in the city, would feel sympathy for them!
Actually, what Lenore felt was strangest of all was how this woman felt familiar to her. She couldn’t remember ever meeting her but there was something about the way she spoke that niggled at the back of her brain. Most oddly of all, when Lenore looked at her the image of floppy-eared bunnies
“Yes, I cannot believe that William betrayed what he had heard. No matter how much that evil man pressured him, I still cannot believe that he betrayed me!” Ellsie sobbed in a torn voice.
“Men,” the woman scoffed. “Don’t you just wish he got what was coming to him?” she inquired with gleaming eyes.
“Oh, I surely do,” Ellsie said darkly. “I wish—”
“Ellise, stop!” Lenore suddenly commanded, and all eyes turned to her in confusion. “This is a vengeance demon - Anyanka! Make no wishes around her.”
Lenore had no idea why she knew that this woman was a vengeance demon – honestly she wasn’t even completely sure what one was – but the moment Ellsie said “I wish” terror dripped down the base of her neck and she had a flash of insight. Whatever she knew from her past life had pushed its way past her mental barrier, and Lenore knew that who this woman was and that she made people’s wishes come true – but in the most awful way imaginable.
Anyanka sighed heavily and placed her hands on her hips as her right foot tapped incessantly in annoyance. “Geez lady, I’m trying to help you girls out here. These men are going to kill you – don’t you want to wish them dead?”
“It is not our way to consort with a demon – no matter what the villagers may say,” Elspeth stated proudly; supporting Lenore’s sudden statement. “You may as well leave now, demon.
The woman just rolled her eyes. “First off, ‘demon’ is quite demeaning you know. I do have a name, after all. I am Anyanka, Patron Saint of Scorned Women. But you see, the new century just started and I need to get a jump-start on my quota in order to maintain my position as the top sales agent of the vengeance demons,” she explained in a determined voice.
“A ‘quota’?” Shannon asked in confusion.
“You know. I have to help so many scorned women,” Anyanka snapped in annoyance, clearly bitter that they were not jumping at her offer of help. “Now, this is the slow season – during the heat of summer is when business is booming – and you girls will probably be my last opportunity to get some business in for next few weeks.
“So, all you have to do is make a wish against the men and I’ll grant it, no matter how big or how small. And don’t forget – this is a limited time deal!” Anyaka added gleefully as greedily rubbed her hands together.
“Because,” Anyanka grinned, “otherwise in twelve hours you’ll be dead,” she (unnecessarily) explained.
“No,” was Elspeth’s stern reply as she drew herself to sit up.
Anyanka frowned in frustration. “So you would rather die then? And let these men live, even though they may kill more women – innocent women? Children even? You do realize that some villages are declaring children to be witches and either drowning them or burning them.
Lenore could see her cousin’s decision begin to waver like a finely constructed mirage exposed to the harshness of blunt truth. Elspeth never wanted to do dark magic or consort with dark creatures, but there really were no options at the moment.
“I think we should!” Ellsie declared. “After all, Anyanka is right – what if more people die because we did nothing but accept our deaths? Connor is evil and must pay – no offense to ye, Lenore,” she added almost in an after-thought.
She shrugged. “My husband has always been a bastard, ladies – ‘tis no secret,” she stated sadly. “I only regret that his wickedness has spread like a disease to infect your lives as well as mine.”
Anyanka gazed at her with interest and knelt in front of Lenore. Her proximity was unnerving – and also strangely satisfying. Her familiarity made Lenore feel, for the first time doing something other than magic, truly comfortable in her own skin. She could also see herself being…friends with this creature.
Yet, why would Lenore have befriended a vengeance demon in her past life? Perhaps, god forbid, she had been a demon as well??
“Wow, you hate your husband don’t you? Let me guess – he smacks you around? Has a barbed tongue that rips against your emotions, leaving nothing but blood-soaked? You know, those religious types are usually the worst,” she stated sympathetically.
Lenore lightly brushed her now swollen cheek with one hand and laid another upon her stomach. Blood had pooled between her legs from the miscarriage and her lower abdomen throbbed with pain. Anyanka’s statements were truer than Lenore would have preferred. The last five, almost six, years had been difficult indeed. Connor had only wanted her because she was the youngest girl in the village who was of marrying age and his deceased wife had not produced any heirs, so he needed children. He cared nothing about her personally and, by god, if she did not think it was sinful to curse a man of God she likely would have long ago.
In fact, in the beginning she almost had…but when she found out that she was pregnant with Alexander she was afraid to rear a child on her own. Then came Elizabeth and Dawn, and suddenly the same beings who were the brightest stars in her universe were also the chains that kept her shackled to Connor O’Neil.
“He has never hit me before today, but alas today he struck me cruelly…my babe died in the womb from his attack,” Lenore admitted woefully.
“What?” all four of her coven members exclaimed at once; even Anyanka looked particularly vengeful at the admittance.
“Why didn’t you say anything?” Elspeth snarled in anger - none was directed towards her, however. Lenore knew that it was all meant for Connor.
Lenore shrugged sadly. “My friends, our death approaches us and I did not want to lay any further burdens upon you.”
“Well this changes everything,” Elspeth stated in a hard voice. “Connor must pay. Anyanka, I wish to take you up on your offer.”
Lenore winced at her decision, but knew it was for the best. She could not leave her children alone with that man.
The demon jumped up like a merry child being awarded a present from under the Christmas tree and clapped her hands. “Oh goody!” Anyanka exclaimed. “What is your wish?”
“I— ” Elspeth began to say but dim, yet frantic, screams traveled down into their holding area from outside. “What on earth is going on?” she questioned out loud.
Anyanka cocked her ear and grimaced. “Oh dammit, if someone got to them before me I’m going to feed their genitals to the Loch Ness Monster,” she grumbled under her breath.
Glancing at the witches she smiled nervously. “You all just keep thinking vengeful thoughts and I’ll be back real soon!”
With a pop, she disappeared. The screaming, however, did not.
“Good god, what is going on out there?” Kenzie mused softly.
Lenore exchanged a look with her cousin. “You don’t think that Fergus is still practicing, do you?”
Elspeth bit her lip. “I did not think so, but perhaps he is working some magic to free us…”
Part of Lenore hoped that was true. She desperately wanted to return home to her children and get away from this malevolent place.
With a loud pop, Anyanka reappeared. “Well, looks like all the men who were involved in planning your deaths are dead,” she grumbled like a disappointed child.
“All of them?” Ellsie gasped.
“Sure. Your husband, Lenore’s husband and father, James, and John; the whole batch. Apparently Lucifer came and congratulated them in front of the entire village assembly at successfully capturing the innocent women for the sacrifice tomorrow. Of course, the rest of the villagers assembled a mob and proceeded to burn each of the men alive.”
“T-the D-devil was h-here?” Lenore gasped alongside her fellow coven members.
“Pssh,” Anyanka waved her hand casually away. “Everyone who’s anyone knows that Lucifer got locked into the Cage by his big bro long ago, so it wasn’t him.” She looked thoughtful for a moment and then continued. “Actually, I couldn’t sense a demon anywhere…although I did sense a pagan god,” she sniffed in annoyance as her eyes lit with a revelation.
“LOKI! YOU GET YOUR TRICKSTER ASS OVER HERE RIGHT NOW, YOU GOOD-FOR-NOTHING BARBARIAN MESSING WITH MY DECLARED VICTIMS!” Anya suddenly screamed out as she stamped her foot with each syllable.
“Loki?” Lenore repeated as she looked wildly at the others. “The Norse trickster god?” Any witch worth her salt knew of each of the major gods and goddesses and Loki was well-known for his malicious, though sometimes just, pranks.
A man shimmered into the room and gave Anyanka a lopsided grin. His eyes twinkled with amusement and he exuded a tremendous amount of power. Lenore noted that when he arrived into the room he accidentally crushed one of the crystals barring their powers, and she felt her magic stretch alongside her spirit again. With a mere thought, she quickly snapped each woman’s chains in case this fight between the pagan god and demon dissolved into dangerous territory.
“Anyanka, baby, you don’t call, you don’t write,” he trailed off in a hurt tone as his lower lip puckered out. “I was thinking you didn’t like me anymore.”
In a flash of movement Anyanka yanked Loki’s bottom lip and pulled him roughly forward with it. “I don’t like you anymore!” she declared vehemently. “You’re always stealing my victims, darn it! For the love of D’Hoffryn, can’t you find your own stupid victims?”
He smiled – or, well, smiled as best he could with his lower lip clasped between Anyanka’s thumb and forefinger. “Aud, you know tha’ I ohn-ly do tha’ ‘ee-cuz I vant ta’ shee you,’ he explained as best as he could.
Anyanka – or was that Aud? – let go of Loki and folded her arms defiantly against her chest. “Loki, you’ve become a real pain in my ass,” she huffed in exasperation.
Sighing, Loki walked behind Anyanka and stared wistfully at her backside. “Am I? Well that is good, because I do miss your ass,” he sighed forlornly, but his eyes were lit with amusement.
Letting out a grunt of annoyance she smacked his arm. “Hey! Stop oogling the goods, mister. What do I look like? A common London tart? Or worse, Cleopatra?”
“Trust me, Cleo has nothing on you,” Loki stated confidently as he gifted her with a sly wink.
The words fell from Lenore’s lips before she even had a moment to think about them. “A pagan god and a demon…coupling? Isn’t that wrong?” Immediately, she mentally smacked herself as the two powerful beings turned towards her. It was just, the Trickster God had such a brilliant white aura that she could not imagine him with an evil demon.
“Hey kid,” Loki gave her a menacing look and Lenore cowered. “Watch your mouth when you talk about Anyanka. She was human once and isn’t a true demon—”
“—Loki! Stop saying that! I’m the demony-est!”
“—Anyways, she’s some inter-dimensional hyrbid and thus not any worse than a pagan god, for example. So stop being all judgey – after all, that is my job,” he smiled wickedly as he tapped her lightly on top of her head.
Lenore felt her adrenaline rush at his calculating look;; every part of her screamed that she should run away from this powerful being that she had, unfortunately, aggravated. “I-I’m sorry. I-I w-was j-just surprised s-since your a-aura is just so p-pu—” but Lenore was never able to say “pure” because her scratchy voice cracked and suddenly her voice was gone.
“What did you do to her?” Elspeth demanded to know.
Loki shrugged nonchalantly. “Humans should only speak when spoken to,” he stated with a smirk, but Lenore saw panic in his eyes – panic that he quickly hid.
“Fix her now!” Elspeth demanded.
“Hey!” he called out in a warning tone. “Don’t go all Mebd on me now, Elspeth! Your cousin will have her voice back, as soon as we are out of hearing distance from her scathingly annoying voice.
“We?” Anyanka asked in skeptical tone as she tossed her wavy locks haughtily over her shoulder.
Suddenly Loki was there holding Anyanka tightly in his arms – and of all things the demon began blushing! “Come now, Aud. Let me make tonight up for you. After all, I helped you with that troll transfiguration spell so long ago – I’m not such a bad guy, am I?” he asked hopefully with innocent puppy-dog eyes.
Anyanka huffed and rolled her eyes, but her lips twitched slightly upwards. “Damn you, Loki. If you weren’t so damn good in bed I’d have killed you by now.”
“Sure thing, my sweet honey bear,” he grinned knowingly. Then with a snap of his fingers they were both gone.
Leaving five bewildered witches left in their wake.
Loki, aka The Trickster, appears in both S2 & S3 of Supernatural. He also appears in two episodes of S5, but those appearances reveals something about his character that is kinda spoiler-y, so I won’t mention it here. However, later on in this story Lenore will figure out his real identity, so fyi on future spoilage!
Please let me know what you thought :)
Thanks for reading!!