A Favour for a Favour

“I can not restore her heart. That is an impossible feat without having access to her body and even then…” she paused, pointing at me, “It would be almost impossible…”

Warm air brushed against my cheek when I formed in The French Quarter of New Orleans. It was mixed with the delicious scent of expensive food and herbs.

I threw a glance across the street to the small shop which was really my destination, but I couldn’t just show up there uninvited. I may be practically unkillable but I’m not averse to magic torture. So, I wasted some time sitting outside the bistro opposite. I ordered a coffee and watched and waited.
Mortals and witches milled in and out of the little gift store. The mortals oblivious to the supernatural world they were brushing shoulders with. Eventually, after what seemed like an age, the one I had wanted appeared.

She stiffened, sensing my presence. Her eyes scanned the crowded street until they locked with mine. She bounced across the road; a huge grin plastered across her pretty face.

“Cain!” Jumping into my lap, she hugged me, planting her soft lips on mine. I smiled back, twisting my arms around her waist.
“Hey, Monique.”

Monique was one of my mother’s favourite demons and one of my oldest friends. We had been friends since my mother had sent her to seduce me on my sixteenth birthday. We had been lovers until I left Hell.

“I heard you were back. I  thought you had forgotten about me.” Her lips pulled down into a cute pout. Reaching up I brushed her dark hair back from her oval face.
“How could I ever forget you.” She smiled brightly for a moment before her lips twisted into a frown. 

“So, what are you doing here? I know it’s not just for my cock sucking skills.” She arched an amused eyebrow, “or is it?”
I laughed loudly, “No, it’s not.” I winked cheekily, “but I’ll take advantage of them while I’m here.”
“I have a boyfriend,” she stammered, the words tumbling over themselves. I arched an eyebrow, “and?”
She bit her lip, lowering her gaze, “I can’t.”

Her words contradicted her feelings. I could feel that she wanted me. Her desire was humming between us like a current

“Well, that is a first, a monogamous demon.” I laughed, surprise colouring my tone.

“Fuck you,” she snapped, punching me on the arm. I could sense there was something else going on here. But I didn’t have time to worry about Monique’s love life.

“Easy, I’m teasing, fuck, whatever Mon, I don’t care. I’m glad you’re happy.”
“Well, you never wanted me for anything more than than a fuck,” she mumbled, dejected, her eyes cast down.

I let out a breath. “It wasn’t like that Mon,” I lied. It had totally been like that. Her oral skills were a fucking gift.
I knew that she knew I was lying, and she knew that I knew that she knew.

We sat together for an awkward minute before she finally spoke.
“So, what do you want?”

She reluctantly untangled herself from my lap, sitting down opposite.
“I want to speak with Sabine.”

She sighed heavily, leaning across the table on her elbows. “And, I suppose you want me to keep it from Lilith?” She said it like she had to consider it, but I knew she wouldn’t refuse me. She was in love with me.

I inclined my head slightly in response. Her tone raised an octave.
“And, will you protect me if she finds out?” Her question was a formality, we both knew that if push came to shove, I wouldn’t be able to protect her from my mother. She also knew that I probably wouldn’t try, but she wanted to believe I would. I nodded regardless. She sighed again, resigned. “Okay, come to the shop after dark.”

Standing up, I dropped my sunglasses down from where they had been perched atop my head, pushing them up my nose. I heard her heart rate spike in response. I smiled brightly, revealing all of my pearly whites, causing her to blush a deep crimson. I wished I could say that I felt bad for using her, but I didn’t.

“See you tonight,” I called over my shoulder as I melted into the crowd.
***

I sparked up a cigarette while I waited in the shadows outside the small shop. Things were running very smoothly for once.

The cyclops was busy forging a weapon to take down Azhole. Fuckwitt was… I dunno, doing whatever that dick does. From what I had heard he had sent a message out to anyone who wanted to join our fight. Personally, I thought he was being a bit paranoid, but whatever. I didn’t really care. It gave me more time to concentrate on getting everything ready for when I had that fucker back.

I had intended to gather an army to take with me to rescue my father. But things had changed. I still intended on gathering any rogue angels that I could find. They were a treacherous bunch on a good day, so I was sure I could find some who wanted to be a part of the second rebellion. Or at least that’s how I planned on selling it. But, after giving it some thought I had realised that my biggest asset would be my mother. If… I could undo the spell that stupid fucking witch Medea had cast. I knew she would join me and help me take THEM down.

I had been watching her suffer in Eden. I saw how much she loved my father and how close she had come to try to rescue him alone. If that witch hadn’t interfered, things may have ended very differently. I don’t acknowledge that she probably would have died! I was far too lost in my own selfish calculating. All I wanted was my family back and planned at stopping at nothing to achieve it.

I had been brought out of my plotting by Monique’s whisper in the dark.  
“Cain?”
I flicked the cigarette butt, squashing it with the heel of my boot, ducking my head, slipping in through the side door to the shop that Monique was holding open, bristling once I was inside.

Magic wrapped around me, making it difficult to breathe. The smell of incense burning was overpowering. I shielded my nose against the stench with my sleeve.
“I come in peace, witch,” I growled, although not completely surprised by her paranoia. “I have a proposition you might find favourable.”

Her high-pitched cackle drifted through the beads that were the only thing separating us.
“No, Cain, son of Lilith, you have come for your own favour… for your own gain.”

The magic released it’s hold, slithering around me like a snake just waiting to attack. Parting the beads, I walked through, letting them fall together with a clatter behind me.

Sabine was sitting in a dark green high back chair. She was surrounded by totems that warned me not to get too close. I stifled a shudder, I fucking hated magic.

Her ancient eyes narrowed, locking me in their gaze.
“I would offer you a seat but you won’t be here that long, say your piece and leave before I do something I won’t regret.”

My lips turned up into a smug smile. “You and I both know, you aren’t gonna do shit. If you so much as breathe on me, my mother will take your daughter and flay her in hell for eternity. So, let’s cut the bullshit.”

Her lips curled like she had tasted something nasty, the magic that surrounded me intensified for a second while she fought with the nearly irresistible urge to hurt me. She relaxed her magic, letting out a defeated sigh. Waving her hand towards me, she said, “Talk.”

I explained about the spell that Medea had performed on my mother, to take her love for my father. She sat and listened.

“I want to find a way to reverse it,” I told her with conviction. She leant forward, her tone low, “Does your mother want what you want?”
“That is my business witch, not yours.”
“Tsk, tsk, cursed man, if I perform a spell against Lilith that she is not in agreement with then it becomes my business.” She paused, fear flashing through her eyes, “and, my daughters.”

“What if I could free you from your obligations?” My eyes shifted to black as I spoke, “What if I could free your daughter?”

Her eyes widened; her nostrils flared as the magnitude of what I was implying hit her. She began to shake her head, “I don’t believe that you have that power.” I smiled, nodding my head, “I do.”

I knew once the contract on Sabine’s daughter was destroyed, she would be free of my mother. Demon deals weren’t as complicated as people thought. As long as Hell’s royalty destroyed it, it could be reversed. Generally, it never happened. My mother, stepfather and brother weren’t the forgiving type. 
I had taken the scroll from my mothers private safe when I had returned home. I didn’t know at the time that I would follow this route but I liked to plan ahead.

Sabine had stood up and began to pace, muttering under her breath. “Medea’s magic is powerful and it would be hard.” She continued to pace and ramble. She stopped in front of me, looking up into my eyes. I noticed the years were starting to wear on her. Small wrinkles framed her eyelids.
“I would need the heart.” She said with uncertainty.

Reaching into the inside pocket of my grey jacket I pulled out a box. Taking it in my hands I turned it towards her and opened the clasp. Inside was the piece of my mothers’ heart, wrapped in a silk cloth. Her eyes nearly fell into the box, she went to touch it but I snapped the lid closed.

“Can you do it?”  
Spinning on her heels she stalked into the back room. “Come,” She called over her shoulder. I followed after her, I glanced around for Monique but she was gone. Thanks for the backup, I thought to myself, not surprised though.

Sabine was collecting dishes and herbs as she spoke, her tone was low and she was talking really fast. I had to concentrate to hear it all.
“I can not restore her heart. That is an impossible feat without having access to her body and even then…” she paused, pointing at me, “It would be almost impossible… but, I can restore whatever emotion is in that piece into what is left of her heart. It might not work! Once I have extracted the energy, you,” She points again, “will have seventy-two hours to administer it into her body.”

“And, how the fuck do I do that?”
She laughed, “That is not my problem, cursed man, it is yours.”

Once she had finished preparing her voodoo, she walked towards me holding a blade. Looking me dead in the eye she sliced her hand, “Give me your hand!” I did as I was asked. I winced as she sliced my palm. She held out her hand for me to clasp. Putting my palm on hers she mixed our blood, muttering a few words. “That is your bond, once I have retrieved the energy for you, my part is done and my daughter is free. They are my terms.”

I swallowed, nodding once. The fact that I had just blood bonded myself to this witch did not fill me with confidence.
Holding out the palm that wasn’t bleeding she said, “Give it to me.” I handed her the box. She dismissed me with an impatient wave of her hand. “Go, in the other room, I don’t want to be distracted by you.” 

Thirty minutes later she seemed to appear in front of me. She was pale, thick black circles framed her eyes. She wobbled on her feet. Reaching out lightning fast, I steadied her with my hand. She tried to bat me away but fell into me instead. I helped her sit down in the green chair. Crouching down in front of her, I asked, “Are you okay?”
Her lips curled, her tone bitter, “Don’t pretend to care about me, cursed man.”

She held out her hand, in her palm was a small Midnight blue, diamond-shaped vile, inside was a murky red liquid.
As soon as I took it in my hand, I could feel my mother’s energy.
I just stared down at the liquid.

Sabine’s head lolled against the chair and her eyes closed. “Make her a fancy cocktail,” She suggested as she began to drift off to sleep.
Her eyes suddenly snapped open… “Now get out! And perform your end!” Then she blacked out.

Putting the bottle in my inside pocket, and retrieving the now useless piece of muscle. I teleported home, to Hell.

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