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Queen of Lust
Author: Emilia Rose




I never thought killing would feel so good.

Sitting on the Lust throne, toying with the tines of my ruby-red crown, licking the blood off the corner of my swollen lips, I reveled in the chaos around me with a smile on my face. Demons from Wrath, Envy, Greed, and Pride hurried out of the vast colosseum toward the portal, trampling each other and scurrying away from me in pure, agonizing fear.

Black mist danced around the ruby crown, my maroon painted fingernails drifting through the haze. Maybe it was the angel inside of me who loved seeing demon carcasses littered on the marble floors, or maybe it was my demon who bathed in the feeling of swelling terror. But all I could feel was immense pleasure rushing through my veins and a desire for more blood, more bodies, and especially more souls.

The souls of the demonic wicked that I unapologetically inhaled clawed at my insides, talons cutting into my cold, dark heart, trying to puncture it, trying to tear me down. But nothing could destroy me now.

Everything I believed in, everyone I loved was either dead or had been hurt.

Now wasn’t the time to give into wailing demons who I killed.

I shut my eyes softly and inhaled the sweet aroma of decaying bodies, smelling almost everyone’s scent under my pink Lust sun except my favorite scent of cinnamon. My chest tightened at the thought of Eros actually leaving. When I told him to get out of here to stay safe, I thought, at least he’d stick around within a few hundred meters of the colosseum to stop me from killing everyone in sight.

But I smelled nothing.

Did he, like Lucifer, want me to lose control? Maybe he wanted to see just how strong I was too. And I knew that if I devoured more meaningless demon souls, I could become the most powerful demon in all of Hell.

When I brushed my fingers across my family ring, I was suddenly brought back down to reality. No… Eros was gone because I told him to protect the last few people I cared about: Dr. U and Jasmine. Killing more souls wouldn’t make me stronger. I couldn’t do it.

Though I wanted to.

Setting my crown upon my soft brown hair, I sat up and gazed around the marble colosseum. While others screamed in terror, Biast sat five feet away from me with a body in his hands and his fangs sunk deep into someone’s neck. He had transformed into a true Wrath demon with eyes swimming in blood; horns longer, thicker, and curvier than moments ago; and a red aura exuding from his red skin.

After sucking as much blood out of the poor caracasses as he could, he let them slip from his talons, sat back, and chuckled wickedly to himself. He lifted his gaze to meet mine, the intense malicious look inside them making me suck in a breath. Claws piercing through the man’s throat, he ripped a sheet of his skin apart and sunk his hand into the body, soaking it in blood. “Come here, Dani,” Biast snarled.

Unable to resist his command, I found myself slipping from the throne and onto my knees, crawling to him in a haze of lust. “Give me control, Dani,” Javier, Biast’s dead brother, whispered in the back of my mind at the mere scent of blood. Ignoring him, I knelt beside him and pulled Biast’s hand from the body, admiring how the blood rolled down his forearm.

Harshly, Biast snapped his large calloused hard around my throat and squeezed. I inhaled sharply and grabbed his wrist, but I didn’t push him away. A wave of pleasure rushed through me, heat gathering in my core. He strummed his fingers across my throat and pulled me closer, pressing his lips back onto mine, the irony taste of blood slipping into my mouth and consuming me.

“Control,” Javier said again, but this time he was so distant, so utterly far from my consciousness that I barely heard him. Hundreds, if not thousands, of souls begged for control, taunted me, spoke so loudly that I could barely think straight.

I was sure there were more voices inside of me than demons that I had killed. But how could I feel or hear them? Was it some kind of sorcery? Could I feel the demons and people that they had killed before I slaughtered them?

Memories that certainly weren’t mine flooded through my mind, the first of a man lying on a dirty wooden floor, clutching a cracked picture frame. Inside the frame was an image of a naked woman tied up and mutilated. Rage rushing through me, I sank my claws into the man’s chest and pulled out his heart, his squirming body turning into nothing but a corpse.

Shifting my focus to another soul’s memory, I found myself pointing a gun at a bank teller, forcing her to open the back vault and shovel money into my duffle bag, the scent of fresh and filthy dough giving me a rush of adrenaline.

Both satisfying and terrifying thoughts these demons experienced flashed before me. They were so loud in my head that I almost couldn’t think straight. But as Biast’s rough lips moved against mine and his wet fingers trailed up my gown, they quieted.

Until the red eyes of Mom’s killer flashed in my head.

Through the memory of another demon, I watched the red-eyed woman climb on top of a young human woman and draw a knife across her chest and carve out her heart. The demon screamed at her to stop, not to touch the woman he loved, to take him instead, but the heartless red-eyed killer only stopped when she had finished the job, had pulled out the heart, and had consumed it entirely in one enormous bite.

I shoved Biast away, my chest tightening, and sucked in a sharp breath. Whoever she was, I needed to find her as soon as possible. I was Queen of Lust now. I had taken care of everyone who wanted to openly defy me. I was close to being invincible. Now was the time to avenge Mom.

After stumbling to my feet, I walked around the maze of bodies to Lucifer who sat alone, the other commanders’ golden thrones vacant. He sipped on his glass of Vemon and drank in the madness with a smile on his face, like this was all his doing. And maybe it was.

“You really outdid yourself this time, Dani,” Lucifer said, lifting his icy blue gaze to mine. He tilted his head to swallow the red of his drink and grazed an iced-horn across the chair, the gold glinting against it. “To be feared by even the strongest of demons is the second greatest feeling you’ll experience in Hell.”

“And the first?” I asked.

Lucifer stood and placed his cup down on the chair. “The first is how you feel when even Mother, that heavenly woman in the sky, is so terrified of you that she rips off your wings and banishes you down here forever.”

My lips curled into a smile, and I glanced over my shoulder at the other commanders huddled together by the colosseum entrance. Even Sathanus had cowered away from me today. I would never know the feeling of Mother exiling me, but now I knew that my powers far exceeded Sathanus’s or else he would’ve tried to kill me right in the center of this ten-story arena in front of thousands of demons.

“Don’t get too arrogant now, Dani,” Lucifer said, studying my face.

“Says the most prideful man in Hell.”

Lucifer chuckled, the sound chilling right down to my very bones. “We have a war ahead against the angels that we must prepare for, because the Beginning of the End is here, the prophecy has begun. Death will reign upon us all.”

“Beliel’s prophecy,” I whispered, brows furrowing slightly. “But how do you know?”

“Look around,” Lucifer said. “It’s the 18th day of the twenty-fifth year of this century. Bodies are littered around us, Biast is drinking their blood, and—”

“And their souls are bound to me,” I said, my stomach turning into knots.

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