The Phoenix Fate

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Chapter 34

"What is this place?" This is what I thought hell would look like, could this be the place Hadew was talking about? There was nothing but rocks and fire around us. Up ahead there was a building, the only normal looking thing in this place.

"This is what we call Tartarus. Also known as my place of business, that building over there is where the magic happens." He waved his hands as if he were performing a magic trick.

I rolled my eyes as I followed him to the building. It wasn't extravagant like I thought it'd be for someone like Thanatos, high maintenance. It was only one story with four windows? "This place looks like a prison."

He snorted. "That's because it is." He pushed the door to the building open. For a second, I was blinded by white light. Unconsciously I had gotten used to the light from the flames. So my eyes needed to once again adjust to normal lightening.

"What!?"

"Thanatos! So glad to see you again!" A supermodel like woman walked up to him. She was tall with curves of a goddess, maybe that's what she was. Her hair was platinum blonde flowing freely down her back. She had a tight knit skirt on with a casual white blouse. I watched as she wrapped her arms tightly around Thanatos neck, embracing him. "It's been dreadful down here without your presence."

"I bet it has, but I'm not here to work. Isabel is." He reached back for me, pulling me forward to stand next to him. The supermodel didn't even spare me a glance. How rude. "You are dismissed early, I can handle things from here. Take the other employees with you."

"I don't mind staying to help. You know if there's anything you need, anything at all, I'm here." She batted her eyelashes at him. Who was this chick? Was she just his employee or has she been something more? Either way she's crossing a line she shouldn't and neither I nor the phoenix was happy about it. The heat I was starting to feel was a dead giveaway.

"What he needs is for you to leave." I crossed my arms glaring at her.

She finally took her eyes off Thanatos to look at me. "Excuse me? Who do you think you are?"

I sighed like the conversation was boring me, which it was if I'm being honest. I wasn't expecting to deal with one of Thanatos groupies today. "Hi I'm Isabel, also known as Thanatos girlfriend and the chick that keeps his bed warm every night. Who may you be? No wait let me guess. A one-night stand that wants to be his girlfriend. Too bad that position is filled." I shrugged giving her an innocent smile.

I could see the storm brewing behind her eyes. It was clear she's never been talked down to before. Thanatos cleared his throat before she could say anything. "That's enough Stacy, I said leave and I'm not going to repeat myself again." He stated firmly. So, her name was Stacy? She glared at me for another few seconds, before spinning on her heels and leaving. "You keep my bed warm huh?"

I looked up at Thanatos as he smirked down at me. "Yeah because I put your sheets in the dryer, I don't know what else you could possibly think I meant by that." I gave him a huge smile.

He shook his head once again dragging me along. "There's only two rules I have down here. Even though I gave you my powers, it's sill very dangerous for you. First, don't talk to anyone down here unless I say so. Second, stay by my side at all times." He told me seriously.

"Ok but didn't you send everyone home? Who would I talk to?" I was confused, he sent all his employees home. Who else could be down here? Then I remember him saying this was a prison. "Wait, is this really a prison? For who?"

"Lost souls."

"What's that?"

He stopped walking, turning around to face me. "Sometimes there are people too damaged and evil for even hell. Those souls are placed here." My eyes widened. How can you be too evil for hell!? And did I want to meet those people? "As long as you have the scythe though you are safe."

"Am I safe? I don't know what I'm walking into! I don't even know how to use this thing." I was starting to panic.

He grabbed me pulling me into a hug, smashing my face into his chest. "You need to calm down, they'll be able to smell your fear." This only served to scare me more. Smell my fear!? What kind of animals were these people. Were they even people?

"I can't do this, just take me back."

He pulled away from me, giving me a frown. "You're stronger than you know Isabel, even without the phoenix. You can do this, and you will do this."

"What am I even supposed to do when I see them? What is it that you do?"

He looked away for a second, before facing me again. "Their minds will be blocked from me since I gave you my power. You'll have to read their minds and punish anyone with ill intent. Any one that is plotting or trying to escape."

"Punish them? How will I punish them?" I had a bad feeling about this.

"That's what this is for." He ran a finger down the scythe.

It took me a second to figure out what he was suggesting. "You want me to attack them!?" Was he crazy? Now I'm really not going. There's no way I can do that.

"We can do this." My body stiffened as I heard a feminine voice. It was raspy and sounded like a whisper from inside me.

"Isabel are you ok?" I blinked, focusing on Thanatos once again.

I cleared my throat. "Um yeah I'm fine."

"Good, then we need to get going. We don't have all day." He started walking again. I shook my head to clear any unwanted thoughts, following him.

The room we entered was pitch black. Even without seeing anything I knew something was here. The stench was a giveaway, it smelled like rotten eggs. You could also feel the evil floating around. Just waiting for someone to embrace it. "This is the first one, there's only three in total so it shouldn't take that long." He whispered in my ear.

I clasped a hand around his arm. "I don't know if I can do this." He ignored me and continued walking. Right, show no fear. I need to suck it up. After all they can't harm me if I have the scythe, right? We stopped at a cell gate. It was huge and not your normal prison sized one.

"I can smell the rainbows and strawberries from here, did you bring me a snack old friend?" A deep voice laughed from inside the cell. There was no humor in his laugh. I could see in the dark, but for some reason I still couldn't make out a figure that belonged to the voice.

"Reveal yourself." Thanatos commanded in a hard voice. There was a hissing sound, which I'm sure came from the guy. Seconds later I could make out a figure. It was huge, the head reached all the way to the ceiling. It was oddly shaped though, leaning to the side as If it wasn't fully attached to the neck. He walked up to the gate, snarls leaving his mouth. It was then I noticed his skin was just like an alligator, spikes ran down the middle of his back. Oh god, what is this thing?

"You smell delicious." It licked its lips grinning at me. I think I'm going to pass out.

"Ignore his words, focus on his eyes. Dig into his thoughts." Thanatos instructed. Did I want to see inside his thoughts? I could imagine the horrors I'll find there.

I did as I was told, focusing on the creature eyes as it grinned at me. Within seconds I could see inside his head, and what I saw was horrible. I saw myself laying on the ground with my intestines hanging out. The creature was standing over me, eating them. I gasped in horror, snapping out of his mind. "Whatever he's showing you isn't real Isabel, you need to focus."

"I can't." So much for not showing fear. I watched as the creature inhaled deeply closing his eyes.

When he opened them, they were blood red. "MORE." He demanded in a booming voice, yanking on the bars.

I could feel my body starting to get hot. I don't know if it was from the fear, or the phoenix was taking over. Suddenly there was a blinding pain in my head. I screamed, dropping the scythe to the ground as I clutched my head. "Make it stop!"

There was a loud growl next to me, then a slicing noise. After that everything went quiet, the pain started fading. I sighed as I let go of my head. I looked towards the cage to see the creature laying flat on his back, his stomach cut open. Standing over him was Thanatos, holding the scythe. There was blood all over his face and he was breathing hard. "Don't. Ever. Drop. The. Scythe." I nodded as he made his way out of the cage. He held the scythe out to me, I hesitantly grabbed it.

"I don't know what happened." I tried to explain.

"Your fear opened up your mind to him, he was trying to kill you," He growled out. "When I tell you to not show fear, I mean it."

"Maybe I shouldn't be doing this! Did you ever think of that?" I raged. How does he expect me to not show fear for creatures I know nothing about?

"Your dad once lived here."

"I-what?" My dad was here? That would mean...

"If you can't face these guys without feeding them fear, you'll never be able to face your father. I brought you down here for a reason Isabel."

"My dad was here? How? How'd he get out?" I had so many questions.

"Your mother helped him escape, the moment they found out you had been reborn again. He was imprisoned here for crimes too gruesome for me to repeat." My mother freed him? How did she even get here? Did I truly know what I was going up against? Was I ready?

I sighed, the only way for me to be ready was to get over being scared. Thanatos was right, if my dad lived here and I can't face the monsters that live here now, locked up. I wouldn't be able to beat my parents. "I'm ready for the next one." I looked him dead in the eyes to know I was serious.

His mouth lifted into a half smile, kind of disturbing with the blood on his face. "That's my girl."

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