Something Strong
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Phnom Penh, Gopette’s living room.

The planchette moved on the Ouija table, in front of its small audience.



"3"



Under Sorya's expert fingers, accompanied by a tattooed colossus and the famous Amy, president of Hells and commander of thirty-six demonic legions, the planchette moved again.



"♥"


They looked at each other for a moment, before turning to the demon. As solemn as his condition required, sitting in his circle of salt, he uttered the wiser words that such a situation required:


"I'll pass.

- Same, announced the sorceress. Sarak?

- I'll leave it to you. Pass."


A very strange scene: a sorceress, a demonist, his invocation and the mind of a man whose skull was sitting on the refrigerator nearby playing cards on a sweet September evening.

The sorceress, in the place of the dead man, spread her game and took the place of the skull, the true dead man, which was unable to handle the cards. She grabbed them, placed one by one face upside down on the table, before exploding with rage.


"How the fuck did you take it with that?! You gotta be kidding me!

- He screwed up in the announcements again? Sarak asked.

- Of course, this asshole screwed it up again! he is enable to retain standards! Remind me again why we still have to play with that skull?

- I really love this game, bid the demon.

- It's Goppette's turn to watch the dead girl. And he says that this kind of game trains him to develop his talents as a errant soul."


The fact is that Virika, a dead mother and the last heiress to the Kayananan clan, was supposed to give birth soon and now required constant supervision. Everything had been planned for the birth and the ensuing battle. The house had been reinforced with several protective seals, not effective enough to stop the soul of a practitioner such as Campamanes, but at least able to slow it down. The entire small team was now confined to the doctor's residence, so that they could act as quickly as possible. As the days went by, the routine had become usual and the watch turns of the resurrected now continued day and night in a perfectly oiled machine.

The company of the deceased mother was not what you would call pleasant, but it was a duty to be performed. His livid eyes looked at you, followed you by simple reflexes due to a lack of intelligence. The poor woman could barely take care of herself, and was only applying the order she could understand. Regularly, the doctor had to examine her and treat her, as she was unable to complain about the slightest pain, which was dangerous when half of the organs were already dead anyway… literally.

Apart from these periods of guard duty, life was organized in Goppette's own home, which was transformed into a headquarters for the occasion. These moments of life were generally used to educate and train Bonarith, the skull, renamed "Hot piss" by Sorya during a previous outburst of justified anger. The birth would be hard. Very hard, but a race for glory like this was not negotiable: it would have to be played.


"And why am I the one playing with Hot piss by the way? Can' you turn around a little?

- No.

- Neither.

- Fuck you, another game lost in advance! I'm sick of it!

- It is not necessarily lost…

- You didn't see the skull's hand… Your familiar spirit didn't whisper it in your ear this time, did he?[

- No, he's too busy at… " Helping" your partner to focus on his cards and not mine.

- … He tried to cheat?

- There are three or four games, yes. Without much success.

- Fuck him !"


The planchette on Ouija's table shaked a little.


"I think he wants to say something," announced the demonist.

- Fuck that too! You, the day you recover a body, I break your fingers, you hear me, Hot piss?"

Predictably enough, the skull did not respond, no one having grabbed the drop to allow it.


"No kidding, I can't remember three rules of announcements, I can't even show a minimum of behavior… He would deserve to die a second time…"


She finally sat down and started sorting the cards. The demonist pretended to be interested in the planchette, received a black look from Sorya, and finally chose to refocus on his game.


"So, you play?"


Sarak thought for a moment and started the game, with a magnificent eight of peak. It was the sorceress' turn to take her time and find the best card to play in this already lost game.


"We are being pressed to play, but forced to realize that the rhythm doesn't follow… Announced the demon.

- One second, I'm not the one with the easiest hand…"

She was about to take out a card, when Sarak's phone vibrated. All eyes were on the phone, while another ringing sounded, announcing a message, in Sorya's pocket. The planchette kept shaking. The demonist and the sorceress took out both of their phones and exchanged a worried look.

"Her water just broke…"


Suddenly, all the windows in the room exploded. The first line of defensive seals did not last long, and the heat of their explosions coupled with the coldness deployed by the aggressive spectrum must have overwhelmed the glasses. The blast of the explosion blew the salt circle and Amy vanished like a sigh, while the flying fragments of glass slashed the two remaining players. At the end of the room, in her cage, a black bird was now twitting in panic.


"Take the skull, I'll cover you," announced the demonist, less sure than usual.


The cards were now flying through the room, soon followed by entire books and all objects not nailed to the ground, in a whirlpool as furious as it was unnatural. Nearly avoiding an English-French dictionary coming straight at her, she grabbed the skull and made a small cry of pain: This one was burning, probably already under attack from the revengerous spirit. She wrapped it around the bottom of her T-shirt and ran to the laboratory. Suddenly, as she walked along the wall, a bookshelf tipped over her. She closed her eyes, sufferring from the fall of some objects that were still stored in it and, surprised to be still standing, reopened them.


"Go for fuck's sake, GO !!"


The bookshelf was balancing, above her, in a more than unstable position. Sarak's familiar spirit must have protected her and not his master, who was now drowned in a tornado of small objects. She nodded and took the corridor leading to the laboratory. Long of about ten meters, she had not covered half of it that a thin layer of frost began to cover the walls behind her. She rushed and opened the door, on which the seals of the second line of defense were already smoking.


… Cet air qui m'obsède jour et nuit
Cet air n’est pas né d'aujourd'hui
Il vient d’aussi loin que je viens
Traîné par cent mille musiciens…


Goppette was inside and was already working hard to prepare himself for the birth. His radio continued to broadcast French variety, so loved by the doctor, without knowing that hell itself was falling on them.


"The seals of the house have already been destroyed, the second ones won't last much longer. So how is the situation?

- The work starts, you'll have to hold him a bit longer.

- How long? Can't you speed things up?

Not with these runes on his labia, otherwise believe me the kid would have been out a long time ago."


the colossus came through the door, a stream of blood on the eyebrow, covered of bruise.


"This bastard is more powerful than we thought. We can't compete," announced the demonist, wiping his eyebrow.

- So what do we do? We're not giving up?

- No, replied the colossus, as cold as ever. We'll only give up if he takes possession of the kid. And even though, to be more precise, we will negotiate. But in the meantime, there's no way we're giving up.

- The seals won't last long, worried the sorceressn and once inside, Hot piss won't be able to last long…"


… Padam…padam…padam…
Il arrive en courant derrière moi
Padam…padam…padam…
Il me fait le coup du souviens-toi…


" We have to manage to confine him somewhere," Sarak said. Goppette, do you think he would be able to tell the difference between the mother and the son?

- Probably not, it is guided by blood, and it is the same genealogy…

- So we could lock him up in the mother's body?

- Technically yes, but do you think it's a good idea to give him control of the body in the middle of the childbirth?

- How long do you think you can keep half a person alive?

- You want to cut her in half?

- That's an idea. How long?

- Probably enough, if I get some preparation time. Sorya, you take the hand on the childbirth, Sarak, tie the upper body, he'll struggle once inside."


The doctor hastily opened some cupboards, pulled out some equipment, strange flasks, came back and began to draw strange symbols on the dead mother's belly.


"Goppette, where is the axe?

- In your suitcase, third closet on the left.

- And what do I do?

- You've never given assist a childbirth before?

- Of course not! In my country, you come to see sorceress for abortions, not for this!

- Look, I don't have time to deal with everything, or explain it to you, so when I will told you, you will have to put your hands here, it will hurt and the next moment, you will push.

- … What?

- I'm not going to take an artificial soul out of nowhere to control a half-body in the middle of a birth, so it's your soul that's going to be piloting it.

-… The fuck?"

- I have no other solution anyway, Goppette continued, so you' re going to have to make an eff…"


Suddenly, the two hinges of the door broke and a freezing wind spread through the room. A silence passed, only punctuated by the radio's song. The temperature was still dropping and the slightest metallic reflection began to reflect a kind of horrible face.


… Et moi je revois ceux qui restent
Mes vingt ans font battre tambour
Je vois s'entre battre des gestes
Toute la comédie de…


The radio set made some sparkles and ignited in a small explosion.



"Goppette, how many time left now?

- Soon, soon !"


A loud scream ripped the room apart from the void, without any real source.


"He's going after Hot piss!

- Sorya, your hands, here, now!"


She did so.


"Sarak, now!"


The colossus make his axe fall on the chest, while the eyes of the sorceress revolted, crying out in pain.

After a frank scalpel shot, Gopette put his hands on top of the dead mother's chest and began to incanter, while a second blow of the axe continued to cut the body in half. As he continued his psalm, the doctor gave the colossus a heavy look, encouraging him to stand close by. He finished his singing on the third blow of the axe, and he immediately took a step back.

For only a moment, the room returns to calm. A second later, the dead woman started convulsing and spitting.


"I blew up the synthetic soul, it worked, he' s locked in."


The top of the dead woman was now hitting hard to get rid of these shackles, while the colossus continued to cut the body in half. Goppette grabbed a wheelchair and came, spreaders in hand, in front of the child who was about to be born.


"I know you won't be able to answer me, but you're doing very well, Sorya, keep it up."


One more cry of pain escaped from the sorceress.


"And I warned you about the pain. Bonarith, get ready."


Sarak now had his hands in his body and made a clean place to cut off for sure the last part that was still holding. He dropped his axe one last time, definitively cutting the body in half. Breathlessly, he watched the torso struggle. Goppette, on the other side, did everything to hurry things up, ready to catch the newborn with the forceps.

The upper part of the dead mother continued to spit and yell in an unknown language, sometimes accompanied by a cry of pain from Sorya, also trying to do her best to press the events at the commands of the lower part. Sarak squeezed his hand on his axe and raised it above his body.


"Please leave her still alive, I need her to finish the childbirth: I'm not sure he will be able to pass Kayanan's runes if both parts are not still alive". It won't be long now, I see the head."


He lowered the axe, then raised it up.


"I will just deal with the vocal cords, you are never too careful. We don't know if he's shouting or casting."


He grabbed the thing by the neck and began to cut the throat. He frowned.


"I'm not an anatomy professional, but…"


All of a sudden, the head of the woman, still screaming, came off, as part of the oesophagus followed and wrapped around the colossus' neck, followed by a few other organs.


" Fucking wizard and fucking creatures ! he thought before saving his oxygen.

- Get away from the table, I'll take the kid out and I don't need a future Krasue or I don't know what else to handle at the same time !"


Both hands used to try to get rid of the creature, Sarak was suffocating.

Crying out in pain, Sorya was holding on.

Forceps in hands, pulling a newborn head, the necromancer was about to give life.


"Bonarith, now!"


The head passed the runes, which began to sparkle under the worried eyes of the doctor. He pulled the boy out as quickly as possible, before noticing movement in the open wound in the middle of the dead mother. The blood was moving. Suddenly, the sorceress starded screaming lounder than ever and convulsing with her full body, as all the blood of the dead mother now flowed towards the child, into the arms of the necromancer. The creature's face, surrounded around the demonist's neck, displayed a grin of pain, while it was now excangulating as well. With a reflex, the colossus, on the ground, threw his leg and swept Sorya down, breaking the link with the dead mother. The blood was now swirling around the newborn, before rushing towards it, covered him entirely.

A silence passed, as each port of his skin seemed to be gorging itself with it.


"…

-…

-…"


The child cried.


"And Bonarith?

- He's inside, according to my familiar spirit, said the colossus as he got rid of his sinister necklace, now inert. He approached to help the sorceress getting up.

-…

-…

-…

- Sarak ? asked the necromancer.

- Yes?

- I will never do that again.

- We are agreed. But we still won. Go take care of the kid, I'll start cleaning. It's a mess over there.

- Deal.

- And by the way, Goppette?

- Yes?

- Try to find us a good bottle. Something strong. Verry strong.

- We are agreed."

Sorya coughed with approval.


They had succeeded: the black book was now theirs, the not dead mother had given life. It was over.

Crazy are the thing you could do for a good book…

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