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Could my name please be changed to:

Kalmar




Life and death carried on. More souls flowed into the forge. More fuel for the machine of Hell.

The streets of the Infernal City were bustling with activity. Demons drilled and patrolled in the streets. Hellhounds stalked the alleyways. The Devils were beginning to form their own societies and hierarchies around certain individuals. It was the beginnings of a Kingdom.

One that he would need to defend.

He turned his attention to the larger island surrounding his own. It would not do to simply have all his defences in one location. Layers of defence were needed. The large surrounding island, which he decided to call Infernus, had already been populated with some basic wildlife when he arrived, but it was not enough.

So, he altered it. Infernal essence from the Hellforge rippled forth, blanketing the land and seeping into it. Corrupting it, altering it, giving it new life. Tree bark became black while leaves and grass became sinister shades of red and purple. Animals were twisted into demonic versions of themselves, larger and more dangerous, their eyes glowing with baleful malevolence. They would be hostile to all outsiders save Aldion, his servants, and those he had granted passage.

That was just the start. It would be easier to develop this land in future now that it was properly attuned to Aldion and his servants.

For now, he shifted his focus elsewhere. The sea and the sky were the areas from which his city was most likely to be attacked. He pondered this problem for a moment, and then a new idea came to him. Aldion looked back to the Hellforge. A new creation was needed.



The doors to the Hellforge opened, and out came spectral wailing skeletons that looked as though they were constantly blazing with Hellfire. They flew through the air and phased through walls.

Aldion commanded one to halt, and it did. Then, he called forth a demon. He motioned for the demon to attack the creature, and it did. The creature’s wail intensified as the demon’s Infernium blade cleaved through it, and it dissipated into a puff of smoke.

Then, Aldion took the blade from the demon’s hands, and called forth another spectre. Aldion motioned for the demon to attack this one as well, and it did - lashing out with naught but claws, which passed straight through the spectre.

Suddenly, the spectre solidified, as if it had suddenly become ‘real.’ It seized the demon by the throat, and began shaking it violently. The demon began to howl in pain and rage as it was set ablaze with hellfire.

Aldion struck the spectre down. ”It functions as intended,” Aldion remarked, as the singed demon fell to its knees. ”Hellwraiths!” Aldion shouted. ”Submerge yourself in the sea. It shall bring you relief. Remain there, and only emerge to do battle against intruders. Keep the sea and skies free of intruders, and your agony will subside for as long as you do so.”

The Hellwraiths complied, shrieking into the night as they dove for the water.



There was one final thing he needed: personal protection.

And so he crafted a weapon. An ornate black warhammer, edged with gold, decorated with skulls, and tipped with a slight spike. Into it, he poured thousands upon thousands of shrieking souls, imbuing it with power. The Hammer of Ruin, he decided to call it. If he was fortunate, he would never need use it.

He did not consider himself a fortunate deity.







Aldion watched his demonic legions march through the streets of Hell. They were organized, disciplined, obedient. Just the way he liked it. And yet… something was missing.

Perhaps Zylana’s departure had left him starved for conversation, but he was beginning to wonder if perhaps some more diplomatic and autonomous servants might be useful. Creatures who could give orders as well as receive them. Creatures who could phrase these orders as sweet suggestions, to give others the illusion of choice. Creatures who were capable of diplomacy and negotiation, as well as battle. Yes. That was what he needed.

He considered the process in which his current demons were made. Essentially, their souls were destroyed and converted into infernal essence, which in turn was made into new life. Problem was, this life was built to serve, with little identity or personality. How to get around that, then?

He considered Zylana. He had not destroyed her soul. He had merely mangled it. The damage was great, but fragments of her old self still remained. Not enough to grant her the will to defy him, but enough that she still understood what it was like to be mortal and free. Enough for her to show initiative and improvise even if outright defiance had been burned out of her. Useful traits, if he ever needed to open diplomacy with mortals.

The solution was clear. What was done to her shall be done to others, although with far less of his power poured into each soul.

So, Aldion returned to the Hellforged, picked out those souls which had been there the longest, and got to work.



The final result was beautiful, swift, and graceful. Where the demons had been soldiers of discipline and death, these newcomers were meant to bewitch and command as well as kill, though they could still kill better than any demon. They came in humanoid forms of varying sizes. Most were built as idealized versions of their past selves.

They all had red hues to their skin and black horns, however. Intimidating on the battlefield, but these creatures were not meant to solely intimidate. So, Aldion taught them the power to alter their appearances, in order to better blend in if it was needed. They could be beautiful, or ugly. Familiar, or alien. Fearsome, or comforting. Whatever was needed.

They would need to travel, Aldion realized, so he gave them wings. They were not corporeal - some were made of fire, while others were made of black smoke. But they were magical, and granted the creatures the gift of supernatural flight. The wings could be summoned and resummoned as needed.

So it was that the Devils were born.










The fires of the Hellforge were put to work, melting the damned into what Aldion was calling Infernal Essence. A peculiar material that was sometimes liquid and sometimes gas, this essence was then forced down through the tower below, where the unseen and ever-changing machinery of Hell made work upon it.

For it was producing the creature that would serve as the perfect soldier.

Faint growls and screams could be heard from within. There was a deep, guttural, echoing quality to them.

Then at last, the process was done. At the base of the tower, the great doors swung open, and out stepped the first of the Legions of Hell. They were tall - all exactly seven feet in height - with tough and scaly red skin. They were hairless, the backs of their heads elongated, with a pair of goat-like horns sprouting from either side.

They were the elite footsoldiers of Hell. The first of the Demons.

Aldion nodded to Zylana. She shouted a command, and for one eye-blink all the Demons vanished, only to immediately reappear shoulder-to-shoulder with one another in a perfect formation. Each demon crossed a fist across its chest, and knelt. They moved as one in flawless synchrony.

”Very good,” Aldion said quietly, pleased with his creation. ”They will need to be equipped,” he decided.

Again the forge made its noise, and when next the doors opened, there were stacks of black ingots. ”I name this substance ‘Infernium!’” Aldion declared, before pointing at one of the demons, seemingly at random. ”And to you I grant the knowledge on how to shape and craft it. Now, get to work, lest I have you flogged.”



The next creatures the Hellforge produced were far more bestial. Black-furred canines with glowing red eyes, these beasts were massive - more than twice the size of the creatures upon which they were based. Zylana shouted a command, and these creatures loped into a loose formation, bowing their heads.

These Hellhounds were not as intelligent as the Demons, but they could obey orders from the Demons nonetheless. So great was their obedience that they would chase their quarries across Galbar if need be, for they could smell souls, and if particular souls were named their target, then they would feel drawn toward those souls no matter where in the world they might be.

They could move swiftly, with water and terrain offering no impediment, for they could run across the sea and up vertical walls if need be. They were the ultimate hunters; they could hunt down those who had been marked by Hell and attempted to escape their fate, or serve as scouts and mounts in Hell’s army.



”A fine start, don’t you think?” Aldion asked Zylana, a day later. The Forge was continuing to pump out demons, infernium, and hellhounds. Hundreds marched in the streets of Hell, and in time they would become thousands. The first batch of Infernal Weapons - a set of greatswords - had been created, and had been passed into the hands of the worthy, who sparred against one another - sometimes to lethal result.

Upon death, a demon’s soul was flung straight back into the Hellforge. Nothing save time was lost.

Zylana nodded eagerly. “A fine start indeed.”

”You’re unusually chipper,” Aldion remarked with a frown.

She bowed her head. “Forgive me, my lord.”

Aldion waved a hand. ”No, no. This is a momentous occasion. Besides, I know you’re eager to get out there. On the morrow, you will take a dozen riders, and ride out. See what is out there, and do what you can to advance the interests of Hell. Make contact with any mortals, if they exist, and teach them my name. Let them know me for the paragon of Law and Retribution that I truly am.”










Aldion had journeyed far, capturing the souls of any sinners unfortunate enough to cross his path. An entire cloak of the things swirled about him, pleading for release, but he simply tuned them out. He had been scouting for an ideal location.

And he had found one.

Situated in the west was a rather large island, with a large bay, and within that bay was a smaller island. This, Aldion decided, would be a good location. Plenty of land to work with. Separate from the rest of the continent, but not so far as to be completely inaccessible.

Now, he could get to work.

In the tiny central island, he raised a mighty citadel, with layers upon layers of red stone walls with black spikes upon the ramparts, diving the citadel into districts. Some districts looked as though they might actually be livable, while others were narrow corridors of tricks and traps. Seemingly at random, the walls would shift and reshape themselves from time to time, or the districts would rotate, creating what was effectively a labyrinth.

In the centre of the maze of was a massive tower made out of bronze, stretching high into the sky and visible for miles.

With a satisfied smirk, Aldion flew to the top of the tower. Then, he began to concentrate. Recalling what he could of his past, he summoned forth all his rage and hatred, and suddenly the roof of the tower burst into what looked like fire. Except… it wasn’t. It was a myriad of colours - orange, yes, but also black, and white, and green, and purple. And it gave off no heat. It could burn, yes, if that was something a creature or soul felt particularly fearful or sensitive to, but it could just as easily inflict a different sensation that was tailor-made to each individual victim in order to inflict as much agony as possible.

As soon as the fire was created, it began to pull souls in. The souls of the damned. Those who had in some way violated hell’s principles, whether knowingly or not. They would be drawn here, willingly or not. To the Hellforge.

Aldion unbound the souls he had cloaked himself in, and they were immediately sucked into the fire. They shrieked in agony as they felt the worst pains imaginable, while at the same time they were forced to relive their worst memories and nightmares while they were slowly and excruciatingly converted into power. Zylana was the last to go, and for a moment Aldion felt tempted to reach out his hand and pull her back. However much she deserved her fate, she had been the first mortal he had encountered, and he felt something almost like sentiment. But he shook the foolish notion away. Her soul screamed with the rest of them.

For a long while he watched the souls swirl burn, transfixed by their suffering. The world was young, and although these souls had done enough to damn themselves, most had only committed one or two grievous crimes. It was a matter of weeks before most of them had burned out. Eventually, only Zylana remained. She was stronger than he had given her credit for.

He studied her curiously. Then, on a sudden whim, he snatched her from the forge as she passed by. Her soul was a frayed, mangled thing, still shrieking in pain and trauma. ”I can free you from your current fate,” he offered. “Everything that you were, are, and ever will be will belong to me. But you will be given new life. New purpose. More powerful than you ever were before. Your pain will end.”

The soul let out a consenting shriek.

”Very well,” Aldion nodded curtly, before flinging her back into the forge.

She screamed again, louder than ever before, while Aldion conjured forth a blade and cut his wrist, spilling black blood into the Forge. He focused his might. Suddenly, the soul within the Forge became quiet and deathly still. Aldion’s blood as well as the essence of the other burned souls began to coalesce around it, taking the shape of a figure.

Zylana was born anew.

She sauntered out of the Forge, the fires no longer hurting her. She was shaped much like she been as an elf, but with too many differences for someone to even think she was the same species. Her skin was red, like Aldion’s. A pair of horns protruded from her forehead. Her eyes glowed yellow. A pair of leathery wings extended from her back. She held out her hand, and claws sprouted from her fingers. A vicious grin appeared on her face.

Then, she knelt before Aldion, and swore her undying fealty. Aldion studied her closely. There were no thoughts of betrayal in her mind. She did not begrudge what had been done to her, partly because the pact made such treasonous thoughts impossible, and partly because all she could think about was this new rush of power, combined with the understanding of where such power came from.

Aldion also realized she still carried no remorse for her past actions. The murder. She didn’t even remember her victim’s name. In fact, it actually seemed as if she was now looking forward to more victims. To kill, to maim, to torture. She had developed quite a cruel and inventive mind, he realized.

He considered the implications of this. No matter, he ultimately decided. She had received her punishment, and now that she was within her power she could commit no further crimes, sins, or betrayals.

Besides, there would be plenty of ways for her to get her claws bloody while serving his will.

”Rise, my servant,” he commanded. And she did.













A fiery black entity hurled toward Galbar.

This entity was intelligent. Or it had been, once. But its mind was fragmented. Only powerful-yet-vague emotions remained. Now, however, as it entered into this new world, driven by sheer instinct toward the mysterious voice, it - no, his thoughts began to reform, and with them came memories. Memories of the emotional pain of betrayal. Of the physical pain of a mortal blow. Death had not stopped the pain, however, for his betrayers had then went on to target his very soul. Then, once they were done with him, they had cast him out into the void between realms. Or had he fled? He was unsure. It was all so blurry. There was much he did not know.

How long had his spirit been adrift?

He had fallen through the cosmos like a shrieking black comet, howling for justice, then for vengeance, then simply for someone to know of his plight, until his mind had fractured to such an extent that all he had left was incohorent rage and occasional bouts of intense sorrow and loneliness. Then at some point he had stopped moving, and his burning hot rage slowly transitioned into a cold fury. He had forgotten why he was angry, but he knew whatever he was angry at, he was justified, and became all the angrier for not remembering.

Then he had heard the voice, and had felt a pull toward it, which he had decided to follow.

And now he was falling once again.

He slammed into the ground, shaking the earth and leaving a vast crater where he had fallen. He felt no pain from the impact. The black energy swirling about his soul then slowly began to coalesce into a form.




He lay there in the crater for days, trying to make sense of his newly-repaired and yet still so heavily-damaged mind. The sunlight shone on his red skin, and he rose to his feet. The memories came clearer now. Still fractured, still unclear, still in bits and pieces, but better than before. A word sprung to his mind. Aldion. What did that mean? Then it came to him. A name. That was his name. He was Aldion. He had been powerful once. Then he had been betrayed. By those he had expected to be loyal.

He flexed his muscles and felt divine might course through his veins. He still was powerful. Then, he began to laugh. His struggle was over. He was alive. His memories may be fractured and clouded, but his mind was lucid once more. He would not be fooled again. And vengeance could be his. "The traitors will pay," he declared quietly to nobody but himself, before it occurred to him that he had no idea who those traitors were or how to get back to them.

Vengeance would have to wait, he grudgingly conceded.

And then he climed out of the crater.




No sooner had he crawled out of the crater did he see a figure approaching him. A bipedal creature, perhaps six feet tall, with disheveled golden hair and pointed ears. He noticed her hands were stained with red. Despite her unkempt appearance, there was something graceful about her. As soon as he set eyes upon her, she stopped, and suddenly dropped to her knees, as if compelled to by some unknown force.

"And who would you be?" Aldion asked, curiously, before furrowing his brow. He could sense something in her. Something dark, and treacherous.

"Z-Zylana," she answered, nervously.

"Zylana," Aldion repeated, as if testing the name. "You are covered in some sort of life essence. Blood, I think. Is it yours?" He began to approach her.

"I..." she stuttered. "I killed, and ate an animal. I was hungry."

"An animal, you say?" He looked about the desolate landscape. "Where did you kill it? Describe it. I am most curious to know what sort of life can be found here."

She did not answer. Her gaze dropped to the ground. Tears began to flow down her cheeks. Her expression was obviously full of remorse and guilt.

"Well?" Aldion prompted.

Still no answer.

"I can sense the stain of betrayal in your soul," Aldion continued, his voice quiet and gentle. "A grevious crime, one that there can be no attonement for if you hide it."

"I..." she was beginning to sob. "I didn't... we thought..." She took several long moments to collect herself. "We were created in a shining city," she said. "And... well, we left. Falyn and I. Not too long after we were created. The city was beautiful but... it just felt too closed. Too constricting. I wasn't the only one who felt that way. There was another. Falyn. He and I, we left. We wanted to see if there was anything out there in the fields. If we kept at it in a straight direction, it wouldn't be hard to find our way back..." the tears seemed to redouble, and she once again paused to compose herself.

"We got lost," she admitted. "I don't know how. But we did. We were hungry, and thirsty. We thought we were going to die. He blamed me, and I blamed him. I..."

"You killed him," Aldion concluded.

Zylana nodded, letting out a choked sob. Aldion reached down and lifted her chin, forcing her to look at him. "Stand," he ordered. She did not move. "Stand," he insisted again, this time more firmly.

Slowly, Zylana rose to her feet. "What are you going-"

Aldion seized her by the throat, and lifted her into the air. Flames of black, green, blue, and orange raced across her body. She became to scream. It lasted only for a few moments. Within seconds, her flesh melted away and her bones were reduced to ashes.

"Betrayer," he hissed with contempt.

Then, something rose from the pile. It was shining, although Aldion could see a black darkness within. He looked at it, intrigued, and then realized that was what he had sensed. It attempted to move away from him, but then he reached out toward it, and suddenly it flew into his palm. He held it out before him, and peered into it, studying it. He saw images of her brief, short life - of the city of which she had spoken, and of her companion. He saw their treck through the wastes, their desperation. Their shared realization that it had been foolish to so brazenly leave the city without first talking to their goddess. Their decision to blame one another rather than work together. Their fight. The murder. And in addition to seeing what she saw, he felt everything she felt.

"You enjoyed killing him," Aldion realized. speaking directly to the soul. "You enjoyed it." He continued watching, until he saw her fateful encounter with himself, and this time witnessed her true feelings. "Your tears were a deception, to gain my sympathy. But I have no sympathy - it was burned from me long ago." He ruminated for a moment. "I will give you some credit - you put on a good act, and it was a deception based on truth. You did feel sorrow. But it was a selfish sort of sorrow. You were sad because you knew your life was at an end. Some part of you knew I would see through you. And even if I couldn't, you knew you would die out here. And even if you did find your way back, you knew your kin would suspect what you had done."

"And I can see things in your soul that not even you knew," Aldion whispered coldly. "You were carrying his offspring." The soul began thrashing in his grip, as if in agony. As if it could hear him.

He did not let it go. Instead, he offered a cruel smirk. "You are mine now, little soul. I shall think of a suitable punishment for you in time. But for now, I can use some company. Although I must admit, I have little desire in seeking out this city or goddess of yours if you are the sort of creature they produced. No doubt there are more like you, and they must be punished too. In time."









Interested. Probably going to be a death god.
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