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 Majoring in Demonology

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Eaton

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PostSubject: Majoring in Demonology    Sat 17 Jan 2015, 19:56

After staying awake for a few hours, Elijah dozed off in his fathers arms. Eaton went back into the other room and laid him down, before snatching up the Pseudomonarchia Daemonum and headed out the door telling Jana he'd be back . . . sometime later. Thinking Zoe would probably still hanging out around Connor's he walked on over to meet up. As he arrived he saw Rends walking away along with Ebony. Zoe was about to turn back into the house before Eaton called out,

"Hey, Zoe! Wanted to talk to ya sooner but I guess I slept in later than I wanted. Anyway,"

He presented the book they found with smile, "I was thinkin' we could go over this together. It might take awhile as this thing's pretty thick but whaddya say?"
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Sat 17 Jan 2015, 20:28

Zoe hesistated for a brief moment before turning to Eaton. She had wanted to make the most of the little time she had with Connor before they set out again, but her curiosity and the eagerness of her packmate were too much to resist at the moment.

"Sure! I'm certainly not going to let you have all the fun! I'm supposed to meet Kefka at the caern at nightfall, but in the meantime I suppose we might as well start making a dent in deciphering that text. What do you say we take it down to the basement at Harriet's? I figure we'll be least distracted there. Not sure I want to take a book with the word 'demon' in the title into the caern."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Sat 17 Jan 2015, 21:01

"Great!" Eaton replied, before hurrying off towards Harriet's as Zoe followed. Making his way through the saloon and down into what was to be their private sanctum for the next several hours, he set down the book on the table and pulled up a pair of chairs.

"Alrighty," He said, producing the cipher, "Even if I couldn't understand it, a quick glance through this makes it out to be some sorta list, a whole 69 of somethin'. Well, let's get goin'."

To make it go faster, Eaton merely wrote down the transcribed letters for Zoe to piece together. The Gaillard didn't seem to even notice what he was writing, as the Theurge pieced together the words, forming coherent sentences. Eventually, the following passage appeared on the page:

My intent is not to present before all people blasphemies of the bewitched kind of men who are not ashamed to call themselves magi, their curiosities, deceptions, vanity, tricks, impostures, deliriums, deceiving the mind, and obvious lies, but rather that they may be unwilling, when they can be seen in the bright light of day, to let their minds run wild  in this most infamous age, where the kingdom of Christ is so attacked by the immense and unpunished tyranny of those who openly perform the sacraments of Belial, who will no doubt soon receive their just reward. To whom I willingly and gladly dedicate these wasted hours, if perhaps through the immeasurable mercy of God, they might be turned around and live: This I beg them with all my soul, that they may be happy and fortunate. But lest anyone who is mildly curious, may dare to rashly imitate this proof of folly; I have omitted passages from this study, in order to render the whole work unusable


Even as Zoe read the words, Eaton kept on jotting letters, oblivious to what they actually said. As he did so he asked, "Got somethin' yet?"
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Sat 17 Jan 2015, 21:16

Zoe furrowed her brow as she reread the text again and then once more.

"It appears the author of the book is intending to bring the secrets of those who follow demonic entities to light in hopes that they will cease to do so when their secrets are no longer secrets. He also wrote that the book is intentionally incomplete to keep it from being used as a tool for those who would desire to seek demonic influence and power in their lives."

She scratched the back of her neck then shook her head. "What I don't understand is why go through the trouble of encrypting this book when its very premise deems it useless to those who would wish to use it for evil purposes? This author seems intent on - or at least hopeful that - by revealing such trade secrets the former demon followers may be redeemed and saved from damnation."

She frowned at Eaton. "I know it's tedious, but I think we need to continue working our way through this text in order to gain some answers as to why the Weeping Moons would want to use it. The ones in Zavala had their creepy instruction manual bound into a Bible and now this book on demons. Not to mention the girls mentioned an angel, did they not? All of this biblical language, but nothing even close to what I remember studying as a girl."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Sat 17 Jan 2015, 21:28

"Huh. Doesn't sound like somethin' ya want on your shelf, callin' itself false." Eaton answered, still writing out characters, "Maybe someone just checked out the wrong book from the library. Or somethin' sayin' it's false might get some wary folk to think of it as a work of fiction."

He paused ever so slightly, before he continued his strokes, "Ya know, the bible I've been readin' mentions that demons were fallen angels, who tried to trick men usin' guises."

He looked at Zoe, ceasing the translation completely, "So what did ya hear as a little girl? My folks weren't exactly the most religious."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Sun 18 Jan 2015, 14:14

Zoe set down the page of translated text she was scouring and gave Eaton a significant look.

"Demons in the Bible were not to be trifled with. You see a few in the Old Testament but the bulk of demonic activity seemed to be centralized in the New Testament for some reason. Unless you want to consider all the gods of the Old Testament demons in their own rite, like the first one here, Baal. Lots of folks got in lots of trouble with the God of the Hebrews for worshiping Baal."

The Theurge sniffs out a laugh. "There's actually a funny story about a prophet of God facing off with the prophets of Baal. Long story short, they had a sacrifice-burning contest. Whoever could convince their god to burn up the sacrifice with supernatural fire would be declared the real God. The prophets of Baal tried everything they knew. The prophet of God, Elijah was his name, he mocked them saying that maybe Baal was sleeping or using the bathroom. In the end, Elijah's God made an awesome display and the prophets of Baal were executed for being false prophets. Not sure how demonic activity plays into all that, but it was an amusing story."

Zoe stretches her neck, which was sore from all the reading she had been doing. "The leader of the demons according to the Bible goes by a few different names, but Satan, Lucifer, or the Devil are the most common ones. Apparently he led the group of fallen angels in some rebellion against God, which led to them being cast down from Heaven to Hell. Satan is also called the Prince of Darkness and the Father of Lies, the one who comes to steal, to kill, and to destroy."

"In the New Testament Jesus and His followers cast out a number of demons because Jesus had some kind of authority over the demons that they had to obey him. Jesus gave this power to His followers, though not all wielded it well. Some demons resisted those who wished to cast them out and even caused their hosts to attack them physically."

"Possession in the New Testament occurred with different results as well. One girl, who now reminds me of the sisters in Zavala, was able to predict the future. She had caretakers who made great profit off her abilities and who were very angry when the demon was exorcised. One man was possessed by an entire Legion of demons who gave him superhuman strength so that no one could bind him. Another person's child was possessed by a demon who would cause the child to harm himself in numerous ways."

Zoe paused for a moment to take a breath, wondering if she was overwhelming Eaton with all her talk of demons and the Bible.

"Now, some would like to blame the Devil and demons for all the evil that goes on in our world today, but the truth is, that's not really true. Unlike God or Gaia, demons are limited in power, knowledge, and presence. Much of the evil in our world today is simply the result of selfish people ignoring the rights of others for their own selfish gain. One could argue that Huling was controlled by demonic powers or that he was simply driven by his desire to profit off the people of Zavala. According to the Bible, without Jesus, the desire of man's heart is always wicked at all times. It doesn't know how to be anything but selfishly evil."

Gesturing back to the text Zoe finishes speaking.

"I don't know about the accuracy of everything in this book, but I certainly believe demons are real and active in this world and may be something the Weeping Moons are trying to manipulate for their own devices. Throughout the Bible I see lots of examples of demons controlling people, but no examples of demons taking orders from anyone in our realm."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Sun 18 Jan 2015, 23:05

Eaton put down the pencil and gave all his attention to Zoe as she shared what she knew. Judging from her collection of knowledge, she didn't just pop in on a sermon or two. At the very least, this wasn't like him who, while had read the entire book, was only familiar with the subject for a short while.

Once she had finished theorizing, Eaton gave a smile, "Funny ya should mention the prophet Elijah. May not tie inta demons or all that, but I did name my son after 'em. At first I just liked the name, but after learnin' he's a New Moon rememberin' that the biblical one wasn't afraid to jest in front of the false prophets kinda reminded me of somethin' a Ragabash would do. Just weird how that worked out."

He cleared his throat and added, "The bible certainly doesn't make these demons out as friendly folk and yeah, with the possession, super-strength and other unholy miracles, they reminded me of the stuff we fought a few times. A few things that make he wonder more is, the "angel" I met straight up defied the wyrm, but still kinda failed to mention who he served. Second, Satan is like the wyrm, we believe in somethin' higher like Gaia and the bible's reveres this unnamed God, but,"

He made a waving motion over their work, "Where's the weaver in all this? I don't clearly see an analogy."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Mon 19 Jan 2015, 07:06

Zoe nods slowly as she listens to Eaton theorize.

"Hmm...strangely angels are written about even less in Scripture. Usually they are messengers sent from the Lord to speak to people directly, like Abraham, Gideon, Mary, and Joseph. Other times they are warriors who are fighting the forces of darkness. Sometimes what appears to be an angel is claimed to be an appearance of Jesus before His incarnation on earth."

"As far as your 'angel' is concerned, demons are masters of deception and thus he could very well have been a demon. However, if demons and the Wyrm are one, it wouldn't make sense for one to be opposing the other. The people in Jesus' lifetime condemned him as being of the Devil because he cast out demons, but Jesus said that a house divided against itself would fall. What else did this 'angel' do that may lend us a better understanding of it?"

When Eaton asked about the Weaver in the Bible, Zoe leaned back in her chair and thought hard for a few minutes.

"If Satan is the Wyrm and God and Gaia are one in the same, then that leaves the Wyld and the Weaver unaccounted for. Scripture portrays God clearly as the Creator, which would align with the Wyld. It also says that God brings our chaos into order, which is what the Weaver attempts to do. But Wyld and Weaver are often in conflict with one another, but God would have no conflict within Himself. There are a few places in the Old Testament where it says God gifted individuals with great skills in artistry, in crafting, and in building."

She pauses another moment before leaning forward and giving Eaton a significant look. "Though God is Creator and the bringer of order, He also brings wrath and destruction on those who oppose Him. Fire and brimstone were brought down on Sodom and Gomorrah. The whole earth was destroyed with a flood in Noah's day. Plagues destroyed everything from livestock to homes to people in Egypt while Moses was there."

She took another deep breath before making a very serious suggestion. "What if the Wyld, Weaver, and the Wyrm are different parts of God?"
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Mon 19 Jan 2015, 18:34

Eaton drummed his fingers on the table as the theurge shared his explanations and reasoning. In response to her first question, he replied, "Well, the only angel's I've seen before were trapped in the stained glass of churches or paintings. This one I found in the field looked like an escaped prisoner; his clothes and features were well worn and his arms were bound in chains." He paused, "Well, that was before he sprouted wings and shot fire out of his eyes. That backed up his claim a bit. But he didn't just deny his allegiance to the wyrm, he explained he was just a scout, that the caern we were tryin' to protect could have been useful for hastenin' the apocalypse. He did seem upset about the death of Akna . . ."

Realizing he was rambling, he caught himself and said, "Oh yeah, he also claimed he couldn't die after Dirt and I tore him apart. Doesn't really bode well if we gotta face another one."

In response to her next question, he let out a 'hmmmm' as he stroked his beard, "How familiar are ya with the whole, 'three in one' nature goin' on with the bible's God? The idea that god ain't just some supreme being, instead being God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit? They remind me of the great trait. It's not like he's three people, but more that each of 'em represent some of God's nature and role that he plays in human's lives. I'd say it's a little tricky to fit the Trait completely to what the Bible makes God out to be. Unless, of course, ya think that the Holy Spirit wants to destroy everythin' in fits of insanity."

While the last part was a joke, he does eye Zoe curiously, with slight disbelief, "Ya do seem to thinkin' pretty hard about all this. Do ya actually believe whatever the bible is sayin' is true?"
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Mon 19 Jan 2015, 19:00

Now it was Zoe's turn to "hmm." "I don't really know what to make of that so-called angel. I know Akna was bad news so it being upset about her demise is troubling, not to mention its supposed immortality. I've never heard anything in the Bible about angels dying, just being cast out of Heaven."

"The three-in-one nature of God does seem similar to the Triat, but the more I think about it, God's destructive side is not at all like the Wyrm's. All of those who were utterly destroyed were ones who likely served the Wyrm as they were people who were Hell-bent on doing evil. So destroying them was more in line with our call to destroy the Wyrm than it is in line with the Wyrm's destrucive nature. There is another possibility."

"According to the Bible God created all things - visible and invisible, physical and spiritual - and at the time of creation they were all good. Does not our lore speak of a time when the Wyrm, Wyld, and Weaver were all working together in a good and perfect balance? It was only after Adam and Eve broke God's one law that evil became prevalent in the world and they and all of creation became tainted by sin and death. Perhaps this sin also threw off the balance between Wyrm, Wyld, and Weaver. We all agree that wholeheartedly serving any one of the Triat is dangerous. Only a singular devotion to Gaia is praised among our kind. Perhaps Gaia is simply the Garou name for the one the Bible simply calls God."

When he asks his last question, she looks at him quite intently for a long moment. "I...I used to, but the Bible doesn't speak of Garou or many of the things that I have experienced in the past couple of years. I would like to align everything we've seen and heard with the Bible if possible because I would like to believe it's all true. Is it possible that there are simply things God did not choose to reveal to us in the Bible. If God and Gaia are one and the same, then speaking of our kind in the Bible for all to see would perhaps be a form of breaking a Veil. If we are His warriors..."

Zoe paused to try and remember a verse she had memorized in school all those years ago.
"For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places."

She looked up at Eaton. "Perhaps this verse is directed specifically at us. We are to fight against those spiritual forces of evil."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Mon 19 Jan 2015, 20:00


"Well, I dunno. The Wyrm's purpose to destroy wasn't necessarily evil." Eaton pointed out, "course, now it's a hateful force tryin' to end all of existence, but just bein' destructive doesn't make ya evil. Just look at Rends."

His sheepish smile fading into something more serious, he adds, "Kinda like The Fall- the wyrm once had a divine purpose-removin' what needed to be. I mean, if you had a plant that just kept growin' and growin' no matter what greenhouse ya built for it, you might see the need for a prunin'. That's what the wyrm once did, though now it wants to burn that plant and the entire town it was growin' in. Its lost sight of what it was meant to be."

However, even then his look turned unsatisfied, "But the bible was pretty clear on what went wrong: humanity disobeyed God. Garou still are at a loss as to what drove the wyrm mad. Some say the Weaver wanted control beyond what was bestowed upon it, and tried to trap the wyrm in it's webs. The Iron Riders tell it a little differently, that the Weaver knew the madness and misery the wyrm would cause and trapped it in an attempt to apprehend it. Point us, while the bible clearly points out when it all went south, our kind still ain't sure."

Then came the biggest response: His thoughts on Gaia being this human god. Eaton took a deep breath and said, "Well . . . maybe? Maybe the bible's givin' 'em the best it can. I mean, our kind is sworn to secrecy and keepin' the umbra and everythin' in it a secret. Sure, it may not mention people turnin' into wolves but it doesn't say weirder stuff ain't out there; it says don't be distracted by 'em and keep focused on God."

He shakes his head and continues, "To be perfectly frank, the reason I even cracked open the book was because Father Ramon intrigued me. He said he was a man of God and I just blew him off thinkin' that he was just one of them preachers I've run into time and again. Course, then I ran smack into somethin' he was talkin' about, which got me thinkin' there's more to all of this than I realized, not just somethin' to do on Sunday mornin'."

He does slightly laugh to himself, "then again, the bible doesn't mention ghosts of the unholy type. I spent this mornin' trying to see where that fit into to what we Garou believe. I didn't even try connectin' it to this."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Tue 20 Jan 2015, 07:04

Zoe purses her lips as Eaton speaks, trying to continue to process his words in light of what she believes about the Bible.

"The Bible says that humanity's screw up is what messed up the world, but it doesn't expressly state in what ways. It's very possible that the release of evil into the world by that original sin is what drove the Weaver and the Wyrm to the unstable craziness that we know them as today. I agree that being destructive isn't evil because God destroyed a lot and instructed His people to do the same. I simply think that saying the Wyrm is a part of God is a stretch because the Wyrm, as you said, is now a destructive force of evil, which would not be a part of God's nature at all."

"Even priests and preachers don't have all the answers. It's part of the mystery of God. If we understood everything about Him, He would cease to be greater than us because we will have reduced Him to something of a human constuct. As far as these ghosts fit into to the biblical understanding of the world, I'm not really sure. Best I can remember, the Bible doesn't speak of such things. Angels and demons, yes. Living humans and humans after death, yes. But never, aside from the few folks brought back to life, were formerly dead folks walking around on the earth. And those who were resurrected were just normal folks again, not like Eula and not like the Hierarchy or Hanging Maw. They completed their extended time on earth and then passed away as all eventually do."

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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Tue 20 Jan 2015, 16:33

At Zoe's first proposition, Eaton gave an unsatisfied frown. "So . . . plain humans were responsible for throwin' the universe inta disorder? I kinda figured it woulda worked the other way; the wyrm or weaver went mad and 'cause of that the lesser beings fell, as well. Could somethin' as mighty as the celestines be that mad over a bitten apple? That whole story mighta just been a metaphor; the importance of followin' that god's will. Or, whatever aspect of God is responsible for order in our legends. Or maybe it was just explainin' how humanity fell after the great spirits had already lost their minds."

About the other issue at hand, Eaton suddenly has a flash of realization, "Ya know, now that ya mention it, there were a few resurrections in the bible, aside from the over everyone makes a big fuss over. In fact, some of God's prophets and disciples were given power over the dead. Course, I ain't doubtin' them, but if those dead folks were fully raised and were able to live normal lives, that ain't what was goin' on with Reverend Knock. He mentioned somethin' that they ain't completely back." He paused, watching for Zoe's expression, "Does that mean he was lyin' about doin' the Lord's work?""
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Tue 20 Jan 2015, 20:01

Zoe tilted her head from side to side in a conflicted manner. "Well, the story of the humans eating the fruit did include a serpent enticing them to do so. Perhaps you're right. Perhaps the Triat was corrupted and then ruined the rest of Creation, like you suggested."

"As far as being that mad over a bitten apple is concerned, how would you feel if you gave Elijah everything he needed but you told him that he only had to obey one rule because breaking that rule would be very harmful to him and there would be consequences for breaking that rule? If he broke the rule, you would be sad and maybe angry. Either way, you told him there would be consequences and therefore you would have to follow through, no matter how much the consequences pained you or your son."

Zoe frowned when Eaton mentioned Knock. "He may believe he's serving the Lord when someone else is really fueling his abilities. He said himself that his gift was unreliable. God is not unreliable. I don't know. Maybe the Hierarchy was right to want to remove him and Eula from this world."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Tue 20 Jan 2015, 22:08

Eaton scratched at the hairs on his neck as he replied, "I dunno. Maybe his power's don't work 'cause of several reasons. I mean, we call 'em our Gaia given gifts, but those don't always work they want we want 'em to. Either the spirit can't or won't aid us, the foe were facin' is too strong, or they're scared 'cause we are a phoenix. We don't blame Gaia for it; maybe that's what he's thinkin'; calling certain people back to life ain't God's will or some other excuse."

He stopped scratching and looked to Zoe, "How do ya know those people resurrected in the bible weren't like Ulah? All it really said was they came back from the dead, didn't say if they behaved any different. I mean, for all we know, we all just witnessed what plain folk might call a biblical miracle straight from the almighty himself. And that's just what resurrection looks like."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Wed 21 Jan 2015, 06:45

Zoe stretched her neck from side to side. "Perhaps you're right. Maybe Knock's powers are from God, but they only work when they align with God's will. Perhaps the Hierarchy simply know that their ways are wicked and that godly people like Knock are likely to get in the way of their plans."

"I can't say the Bible really says what the state of the resurrected folks was after the fact. It seems to imply that they're normal, but looking at Eula from our side of things, she appears fairly normal as well."

Zoe stood up and stretched, unsure how long she and the Galliard had been down here discussing demons and God and everything in between.

"I guess the most important question to answer is: so what? I've greatly enjoyed our conversation today, but how does it help us get a leg up on the Weeping Moons or on demons that we may face in the future?"
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Wed 21 Jan 2015, 12:32

Eaton's eyes actually lit up at Zoe's question, "So what?! Sure, maybe all we've talked about today is a bunch of shlock, but don't mean others folks think it is."

He went on to explain, "Sure, we may know all about Gaia, Spirits, the wyrm, and everythin' in between. But the point is, we can't just go around spoutin' that. We've got the veil for a reason and I don't wanna be one of the werewolves who were clueless enough to shred it."

He points back to the book, "But that don't mean we can't put it in a language they might be able to understand. Sure, they may not call 'em the Wyrm, but plenty of folks fear the devil. And maybe we might get weird stares sayin' we're warriors for The Mother Goddess, but people might thank us for goin' forth in the Lord's name."

"The point is, we might not believe in the same God these people do, but that don't mean we can't try and understand 'em. We might even be able to ally with 'em without comin' off as a bunch of fools who don't know what they're talkin' about. Not only could we reassure those who have no idea of the umbra or werewolves, we can also preserve our secrets."

With a smile, he holds up the book, "Whether they call 'em demons or banes, either way, they gotta go. It's just a matter of knowin' your audience."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Wed 21 Jan 2015, 12:38

Zoe holds up both hands in defense.

"Whoa! Hey! I'm not saying this is a pointless discussion, I just want to bring the conversation back to why we even started deciphering this book, which is to try and get an idea of what the Weeping Moons might be up to. Maybe all we know is that they're interested in summoning demons. Perhaps the Lachrymae was a result of one of their demon summoning rituals. Didn't the other book we found in Crossroads have to do with rituals that involved burning corpses to get Luna's attention? Sounds pretty dark and twisted for me, which demons love."

"You're right, though, if the priests have ways of exorcising demons or even just knowledge of the ways they work and get around, we could work together without ever revealing what we believe about their nature, whether they are banes or spirits or ghosts or something else entirely."
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PostSubject: Re: Majoring in Demonology    Wed 21 Jan 2015, 12:55

Eaton recounted, "Somethin' I think is worth mentionin' is while you and Zas defended Knock and Ulah at those Indian graves, Rends, Mocks and I interrupted another ritual. They taunted us by sayin' that they would have their ultimate victory, that they would become the Queens and Kings of Hell. Course, we knew right away they were messin' with banes and took care of that whole mess. Whatever they are up to, just killin' the cultists ain't gonna to be helpful, I think. Somethin' truly nasty is just usin' 'em. Unfortunately, this book wasn't too helpful," He gently padded the worn book, "But by callin' them demons, yes, we maybe could attract the help of . . . anyone who could lend a hand. They never have to know it was the wyrm, keepin' our world safe."


Thinking a little bit longer, he adds, "It does sound like these Weepin' Moon creeps have a twisted faith of their own. If we hunt down whoever is grantin' 'em power, we won't have to worry about anythin' like Zavala ever again. Though maybe we should come up with another plan besides eatin' it."

Eaton gave Zoe a small smile, "Ya know, we've been at this awhile. Don't think ya have to stay here 'cause of me. If you'd rather be somewhere else, I ain't gonna be offended."
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