The buildings of the city loomed overhead like dark brooding priests, tired from gasping in the carbon thick air of the streets. Their vermillion brick faces stained by the years of smog and acerb rain. Windows, dusty filters to the world, dragonfly arrays of lenses held in place by pealing acrylic, looked down and dour. In this twilight of greenhouse chemicals and ammonia clouded skies Vincent marched home. His noir polymer boots stomping on cracked and crushed paving slabs. Each step was heard. A faint creak as the leather clad feet strode along the pavement.
A tinkle and rattle of coins and keys heralded Vincent's return home as he dug from his pinstripe trousers his door key. A satisfying clunk and a ghostly creak welcomed him home. The warm synthetic air gave way to a chill musty one. Pungent incense still lingered on from the night before.
Vincent hung long windbreaker from its usual peg, and the satchel nestled into the sofa. A bubbling and a click, and soon Vincent had a piping hot coffee in hand, the mug emblazoned with an insipid "Your the Best". He ran a hand through his flambouyant red hair, allowing the tufts to take on some order. It was still a mop of ragged, vivid, mess. He removed the shades from his forehead and made his way up stairs, collecting the satchel as he passed.
The leather boots thumped up the steps, muffled by the 70s vomit patterned carpet. The banister straining against each hand grip upon the lacquered cream paint. Vincent passed the other rooms on the floor and made his way to his study, entering the curtained room, faint slivers of light cutting past the the thick fabric drapes. Sat humming in some digital tune was Vincent's PC. The titanium white case freckled with dust. Beside it sat a dated CRT monitor, the standby light blinking a lime green disco. Above the monitor was a crome camera, its cover off to allow the device to zoom at the corner of the room.
Vincent took in a tired breath and sat down on the thread worn office chair and took a gulp of the amaroidal coffee. "Still no answer then?" He sighed, his voice ragged, disguising his youth.
He turned about on the spot, the chair straining, and he looked in the direction the camera was viewing. Inscribed in a sticky black fluid was a circle, lined with ten burning candles in one quadrant of the circumference. Within the circle lay a fat slab of beef steak and about it three small coffee mugs containing various fluids. One contained Mercury, the next had some Iodine brown emulsion, and the last held what was obviously blood, thick and blackened by the oxidised iron.
Vincent turned back to the PC and pulled out the keyboard from under a morass of books and printouts. Some held menageries of Norse runes, pages held madalas and seals. The monitor blinked on.
FILE TO BIG
Vincent eyed the screen and peered at the unix shell, fumbling about for a DVD to write too
Well thats new. I thought these demons were only little?
The tray slid out of the face of the difference engine, and Vincent plucked the silvered polycarbon dish out with his middle finger. A faint emanation of sulphur followed the disc from the cd writer.
Should be glad I know at least which realm this blighter is from.
Gingerly Vincent held his hand out over the magic circle and placed the disc on the pungent piece of cow, directing the rainbowed face towards the digital camera.
For a Decarabia this sucker has taken up a lot of band width.
Viincent sat back on the chair and swivelled around so to lean his forearms on the back rest, he took off his suit jacket and slung it on the door handle. He reached back for his cup of coffee and pulled out a coin from his pocket. With a plop the coin dropped into the inky caffine and he took a slug of the potion.
Words not heard of on Earth except by those of his calling emanated from his stern lips, the sounds tugging at the cords of the world, holding back all the locks and veils for a brief moment. The world paused in its rotation and the stars above screamed from their fiery hearts. The candles flickered and the DVD crackled as the reflective metal vaporised within the disc. The smell of cooking fat filled the room and a wind picked up, flicking pages and notes from the computer desk.
Vincent grinned. Time for an interrogation.
Seeping through the cracks in the cage of reality, the Decarabia took form, its luminous being spilling from the camera lens and sucked into the magic circle. Blood and mercury boiled.
"Bastard! Who are you to bring me here?!" Spat the foul toady being, no higher than 2 feet, it observed Vincent with avian orbs. "I shall have the crows tear from you your eyes, I will. Feast upon them, and dance upon your broken form."
Vincent leaned back laughing and gulped back more of the coffee and held out his cell phone. The LCD screen flared into life and red numerals bled in from the edges. The demon clutched at its ears with 6 spindle like fingers on each hand.
"Yaarggghhh!" The beast screamed, frantically shaking its pocked marked head back and forth. "It hurts! Nooo. No More!"
"We have an understanding I see?" Vincent lowered the phone. "So lets get the obvious stuff out the way. Whats the price?"
"Fine!" The demon sulked and stared at the mage. "Bloody toys and you. Easy it was back when all they had were swords and crystal balls. Nooo. Make diiigiiital things you did. Bah! Lazy!"
"Oh come on. I at least gave you breakfast."
"Ok. The half moon, on the eleventh hour of night. Burnt in foxglove and nightshade. The hair of a newborn boy. And with it part of the placenta."
"I see we've gone and gotten a little refined in our tastes?" Vincent got up of the chair and crossed over to the edge of the circle, bringing with him a map of the city and a collection of glossy photos. "You know what I'm going to ask?"
"The city stone. The Great Stone. Oh dear. Late in the hour is it that we try to undo the mistakes of ages past. Of our forefathers." The Decarabia grinned and licked at it's greasy lips, cracked and weeping with sores and scabs. "You've heard him dream. Restless he is. Neither here nor there he dreams. Looking for what was his."
Vincent sighed. "Yeah. I guess we are a bit late. What is the name?"
The pygmy creature let out a gutteral cackle. "You think any of us know. Viiiiincent my boy. Are we tired? Has it been a long day? Bless."
"Fuck you." Vincent sat down cross legged and placed the maps to his side. "Lets rephrase that shall we. What awoke it?"
"A shard. How does one cut diamond? One uses diamond of course. What awoke him is what sealed him away. Stones and rocks are my speciality didn't you know" With a snigger the demon held up the 'OK' hand signal. Vincent had to smile, as much as these beast were cruel, they did have a way with comedy.
"Ok, so some idiot breeched the Atlantean seals using some device made of the same stone as the Great Stone and the standing stones about the city. How do we seal it?"
"Now thats a tough one. Bit like an egg shell."
"Huh?" Vincent rubbed his chin and got up for a second, the floor boards creaking as his weight shifted. The Decarabia hopped up onto its avian legs and turned to regard the lump of steak and greedily snatched it up, gnawing away of the racid flesh with a mouth of pirana teeth.
"SHIT!" Vincent stood up and stared at the demon. "Your saying those seals were a one shot! Oh fuck. We're fucked then!"
"Mwha?" The demon looked over its shoulder, it's mouth half stuffed with the sickly meat. "Mwo ye. Mwah!" The hellish spawn giggled.
"But thats what it's looking for its name. It's true name. That was how they stripped it of its power. Stole its name and sent the bastard to Elsewhere. Genius. Now all I need to do is find its name before it can. That'll be easy." Vincent chewed on a nail and paced back and forth in the study.
"Book of Dead Gods."
"Don't take the piss. Lovecraft was having a joke when that was written. It's not true. The one in London has no power."
"But in his own cage Man makes power and makes magic."
Vincent stood and looked at the hellspawn puzzled. Makes its own power and its own magic. Then did the Seers truely win? What if they made things worse. What if man can in the emptiness of this cage invent horrors never seen of before the Fall.
"Best joke ever made I think that one."
Vincent raised an eyebrow and slid his hand into his back pocket and ran a finger over the smooth plastic buttons of the cell phone.
"Piss off!" And in unison Vincent thumbed the button on the cell phone. A high pitched whine broke the stench of the air and the veil of the worlds open once more, sucking back into the pits of hell their foul little minion.
"Remember the deal Vincent! Remember" The howl of the winds of the Abyss cut the vile creature off as its form was folded into itself and the DVD crumpled and crispened.