I don’t wait for my self-preservation to kick in. I knock once and open the door quickly entering the room carrying the tray of drinks. I stop dead in my tracks as I see Nina hog tied on the table in the middle of the lounge. I hold the tray of drinks up over my head.
“Let her go.” I demand angrily. Vladik makes his way towards me.
“McKenna.” He warns. “Don’t make this any worse.” I glare at him incredulously.
“Vladik.” I respond dryly. “I’ve always wondered how you’re able to stand so tall without a spine.” I hear the collective chuckles from the daemons around the room. I suppress my shudder as I count six of them as well as Kane. Kane smiles a malicious smile as he surveys his minions.
“She’s right Vladik. The cage dancer has more integrity than you do. Now get out.” He orders Vladik.
“And take Nina with you.” I instruct Vladik. Kane lets out a boisterous laugh.
“Oh little Daarnya. We’re not done playing with the girl yet.” He informs me and I see the tears stream down Nina’s gagged face. Vladik flees the room. I steal myself.
“We’ll I’m not playing any games with you tonight Kane. What do you want?” I demand. He looks pleased with himself for a moment as he eyes my tray.
“Are those drinks for us? How thoughtful. Torture does make one extremely parched.” His statement is met with hissing and guffaws from his minions and I glare at him defiantly. He takes a step towards me and Maximus steps out from behind me to place himself slightly in front of me. Kane looks pleased with the action.
“Ah Maximus. I do hope you haven’t forgotten your old comrades.” Kane announces gesturing around the room. I see a flash of recognition flitter across Max’s dark face before he resumes his threatening glare. A fire ball comes from nowhere and engulfs Max taking him through the wall followed in hot pursuit by the six daemons.
Kane grabs the tray of drinks form me and walks towards the large gaping hole in the wall before downing each drink on the tray. He straightens his suit before stepping through the carnage to follow the fight. I rush to Nina’s side taking out the switchblade and cutting through her ties.
“Oh my God Kenna.” She cries as I take the gag from her mouth and take her face in my hands.
“Stay out of sight. As soon as the coast is clear get out of here.” I instruct her seriously holding her tightly for a moment.
“This is it isn’t it?” She cries again as the sounds of crashing and an almighty battle echo up from the club ground floor. I look at her sadly and nod.
“I love you sister, always.” I tell her urgently before I let go to run from the room to help Max. I see him squaring off with the six daemons in front of the stage as Kane lingers in the background watching on like a man watching a sport.
I leap from the last few steps coming up behind Kane quickly bringing my switch blade to his throat. “Call them off.” I seethe at him pressing the blade to his skin until it draws blood. I see Max’s face flash with pride before something else. Kane smiles a crooked smile before taking a hold of my hand and pressing the blade deeper into his neck.
He throws me to the floor and I look back at him in horror as I see the ring of red pooling down his neck. “This is foreplay compared to the treatment I copped from Lucifer for daring to touch you little Daarnya.” He informs me darkly indicating to the wound on his neck. A brilliant scheme occurs to me and I try to let my thoughts fill my mind for Max to play along.
“You’re even stupider than I thought if you think that Lucifer attacked you because of me.” I spit at him defiantly as I get to my feet. I can hear the battle resume behind me as I keep my focus on Kane. He holds his hand up halting the fight.
“What would you know, you’re nothing but a chew toy.” Kane hisses angrily. I crook an eyebrow up at him.
“You’re so deluded it’s almost sad. Lucifer knows about the coop you’re planning.” I bluff hoping for a sign of confirmation. I see it in his eyes, only for a split second but it’s there. “He knows you were trying to kill me as a distraction.” I add and I see full out fear fill Kane’s face as he starts to look around.
“Why do you think I’m here?” Max adds darkly. “Commander of the seven legions of Hell suddenly assigned to babysit a mortal. Or to await the daemon foolish enough to plan a coop against Lucifer make a move to hang himself with while I hold the rope.” I steal my features proud of my warrior for picking up my plan.
“You lie.” Kane hisses. “You’ve been screwing this mortal. You’ve offended Lucifer.” Max laughs a dark maniacal laugh.
“If I offended Lucifer why would he let me live knowing that I am screwing his new toy. She was his reward for my loyal service to him. Once I dispatch you, my rewards will be endless.” Max tells him like he’s bored with the conversation. Kane looks around at the other daemons searching for denial of Max’s words.
“Even the club janitor knows about your coop plans Kane. How did you think you that you could possibly deceive the greatest deceiver of all time?” Max questions with a playful smile. Kane stands dumbstruck for a moment and in that moment of confusion Max reaches out to snap two of the necks of the daemons surrounding him.
“You’re lying.” Kane seethes before ordering the rest of the daemons to attack. A virtual blood bath ensues as Kane attacks Max as well. I stand in awe for a moment at the sight of my warrior fighting against these daemons like he’s merely playing a game. He really is an incredible fighter.
In my awe I don’t see one of the daemon’s attention turn to me. I scream at the surprise of being thrown back against the back of the stage. My scream was enough to distract Maximus and the Daemon’s fighting him gain the advantage. I cry out in horror as one brings a sword down to Max’s chest barely missing his heart as Max doges to the side at the last minute.
I pull my hair pin blades from my hair and jam them into the eyes of the daemon trying to pin me to the wall. The daemon howls in pain clutching his face as he drops to the ground before me. I barely make it to the edge of the stage before another grabs me by the throat and throws me back against the stage floor while he stands on the ground in front of the stage.
My head hits the floor hard and my skull feels like it shattered. The daemon throws me down to the floor in front of the stage pulling me to my knees by my hair as he forces me to look at a restrained Maximus. Max’s eyes pierce my soul as dark fury rages through him as he struggles to get free from his captors. I can see how this ends and I can’t stand it. I know what I have to do and it’s going to kill me.
I feel a tear lose from my eye as I look at Max pleadingly. “Kane.” I scream out angrily stopping his motion of decapitating Maximus. He looks at me furiously. “You should kill me first. Lucifer will be pissed that Maximus failed in his task and you will gain favor by delivering his new toy to him sooner.”
“No. McKenna.” Max bellows out in the perfect reaction that I need to make this happen. Kane’s face breaks out into a knowing grin as I free my hand long enough to bring my zippo up to send a blazing fire into the crotch of the daemon securing me to the floor. The daemon flees from me trying to douse the flames on his body as I try to get to my knees but stumble.
Max tries to get free but fails. Kane turns to face him. “You were lying. You feel for this creature.” Kane confirms knowingly. Max curses at him in his language as Kane raises his sword and takes a step towards me. “It’ll destroy you to watch her die mere feet away from you knowing that you—the mighty Maximus—were powerless to stop it.
“McKenna run.” Max bellows. Kane laughs as I fall back to my knees. I reach behind my head and feel the wet pool at the nape of my neck. I bring my hand back around to see the crimson soaked fingertips. Max’s bellows get louder as Kane takes another step towards me. I look at Max pleadingly as he struggles to get free from the two holding him down securely.
They’re no mere daemons. They’re strong and calculating, almost like Maximus. It dawns on me that they’re fallen as well. As Kane takes another step bringing himself alongside me I feel all my fight leave my body as I try to send a flame at him which he extinguishes immediately with a wave of his hand.
“What do you want Kane?” Max finally bellows out looking defeated. Kane laughs in amusement.
“My, my how the mighty have fallen. Maximus the commander of Hell’s legion’s bargaining for the life of a mortal.” Kane almost squeals with delight. “Your eternal loyalty and servitude may purchase the life of this mortal to be spared.”
“No Maximus.” I plead urgently trying to save my strength. He looks at me desperately defeated.
“You will spare her?” Max confirms. Kane nods at him once. I shake my head vehemently at Max.
“Please don’t do this. Not for me.” I plead through my tears. “Mon Guerrier. Mon ame.” I cry over and over again. Max’s face is completely torn.
“McKenna. Cor meum.” He pleads helplessly. Kane lets out a sigh seeming bored before he runs his sword through my stomach and pulls it out just as quickly. “No!” Max’s voice booms throughout the club and Kane wipes his sword off as I look down in disbelief at the red flowering wound on my stomach.
I place my hands over it desperate to hold on. Max is fighting like a caged animal howling and cursing. “Not even your warrior can save you now little Daarnya. No one will be able to save you.” Kane threatens darkly as he raises his sword again. I smile a knowing smile as I pray Max forgives me for what I’m about to do. Kane looks at me confused as I lean my head back.
“Lucifer!” I scream so loudly as to let my voice pierce all the barriers of every plane. My breaths are shallow and erratic as I let my head fall back down to look at an incredulous Max who is shaking his head. Kane’s eyes are darting around nervously as are the two securing Max.
I feel myself drain of my last ounce of energy as I fall to my side on the floor clutching the wound on my stomach. The only sound I hear for the longest time is my own erratic breathing, then I feel him before I see him.