A small desk lamp shed a pool of light on the desk surface. An old-style rotary phone sat next to a nondescript pencil holder filled with sharpened yellow pencils. Centered in the pool of light on the desk sat a pile of blank white paper. Robert Dante sat in the shadows watching the paper as words appeared at the top as they had back in the warehouse.
This is the second time I have saved you, Robert Dante, Rabdos wrote with his quill. Dante blinked but said nothing. Your cause is admirable but you are using a butcher knife where a scalpel is needed.
Dante’s brow furrowed in anger. He made a fist and pounded it on the table once, “We must show these capitalists they do not control the world. This is how we do that.”
No. This is not how we do that, not any longer, the words read on the paper. You have done well contaminating food supplies with bacteria making people sick, and damaging cable systems as though you were a copper thief. The tanker would have been a massive step up for you, granted.
Dante huffed and sat back in his chair trembling at the thought of the missed opportunity. He quickly rose and crossed the small room. The wall he stopped at had a very small two foot by two foot door with a large metal bar across it secured by two metal brackets. He checked the bar to make sure it was securely in place before returning to his seat.
“You are Shaytan. Why should I listen to you?” Dante asked the paper.
Yes, I am a shaytan, a demon, but I am not the evil one you have been led to believe. I can give you a way to trouble our mutual enemies far greater than any tanker truck filled with explosives, Rabdos wrote on the paper.
“I have no intention of selling my soul to Shaytan. I am needed for our cause,” Dante said, half turning from the paper and crossing his arms.
So, you are not truly ready to make ANY sacrifice for the cause, just the convenient ones, Rabdoes wrote. He smiled to himself. Pride always was the easiest way to get inside a man’s defenses. Dante turned and slapped both his palms onto the desk ruffling the stack of paper.
“I am willing to make any sacrifice,” Dante started loudly and then checked his voice to a more calm tone. “Any sacrifice, do you hear? The things I give up will be returned to me tenfold in the afterlife.”
The longer you are here, though, the more you can accomplish for the cause, yes? Rabdos asked. He knew the answer already and didn’t allow Dante to actually voice it. You will be caught in short order without my help, today in fact.
Dante looked at the door again after he read the response and sat back, not taking his eyes off the paper.
As I kept you from being caught at the warehouse, and as I have kept you from being found to this point; so can I save you from forces you are not even yet aware of, Rabdos said.
“The American police are numerous, yes, but fools. I have evaded them this long and will continue to do so,” Dante said, arrogantly dismissing the previous statement of being caught.
That is a lie and you know it. Besides it is not the local authorities you should be worried about, Rabdos wrote.
“The FBI? They are even more ridiculous than the police,” Dante said.
Not them, the real enemy, the ones you have been fighting since the Crusades, Rabdos wrote.
“Christians? They don’t even believe we are a threat,” Dante said puzzled, but he turned to face the paper again. The sheet was filled and slipped off the stack revealing a fresh sheet beneath.
Christians are the real threat. They are the majority in this country and make laws to take freedom from people like you. They don’t want you worshiping at all, let alone free. We strike at them and we take out all those who truly oppose us, Rabdos knew he had him.
“I do not wish to be beholden to Shaytan. Away with you,” Dante said waving a dismissive hand at the stack of paper.
In less than twenty minutes when the police bring in their dogs, they will find this concealed backroom, Rabdos wrote and then paused for effect. And you. How will you escape this room without me?
Dante sat back in the chair and stared at the paper. He rose and went to the door pressing his ear against it. The music from the strip club was off now and he could hear muffled voices and the sounds of walking coming from the dressing room beyond his hidden little door. Rabdos waited for him to return to the chair before he wrote his next missive.
Others are beholden to demons, it is true. But, they are merely slaves to their own fleshly desires. You are much stronger than the usual mortal I seek out. You will have true power, not just control over simple conjuror’s tricks like women’s desires, vane appearances, or simple wealth. I will show you how to work the tricks of legend, Rabdos said, drawing on the wealth of options given to him by Satan himself. You will need the tricks and skills I offer if we are to avoid those who seek your capture.
“But I don’t even know who they are or who you are talking about. Christians do not seek my capture. American law enforcement does,” Dante countered.
American law enforcement is a pawn under the control of Christian-inspired men and women who think themselves virtuous and seek to destroy you. They use the old ways, ways we thought destroyed during those same Crusades that killed so many of your people. You can neither see them nor will you be able to find them, but they are there and after you nonetheless, Rabdos wrote truthfully.
“If I can’t see them, how do I fight them?” Dante asked. “How do I affect them at all?”
With my help. You sacrifice for your cause to me, and I will grant you the powers to both conceal and defend yourself. Rabdos decided now was the time, and placed a small ceremonial knife with a long, razor sharp blade and white bone handle on the desk next to the paper stack. Dante watched the desk as the knife faded into view right where Rabdos had set it. As the knife faded into view Rabdos laid the contract he held onto the used sheet of paper that sat next to the pile he was writing on. Now is the time. Slice open your thumb and press it against the agreement. Then we will be partners and I will be able to help you more fully.
Dante picked up the knife and scanned the short document appearing on the desk.
Guardians of the Herald is a weekly serial published and copyright by The Cavalier, Mark Malcolm. For more information about this story please join us on our Facebook page community at www.facebook.com/firstchevalierbooks.