Tuesday, July 31

Oh, Look Over Thar..

Update: It seems there was a contest going on that only one person applied for so the contest was set aside, now there's ruffled feathers. I've submitted the flag to Lunar. In the meantime you are still free to look at it and take copies.

I had designed a flag for Steelhead way back when I was still a Deputy under Mayor/Sheriff Steelwolf Pascal. (Separation of Powers? My left boot from my right boot in kickin' yer lawyerin' backside!) This was back when Steelhead was even more Wild than it was Weird. People could call Town Meetings whenever they dang well pleased, nobody collected rent, the Jardin was just a skybox and people turned to the pale, horned cowboy to save the town from the Griefer Gang. It was a contest, one of my attempts to pull the townsfolk together when the management was in absentia.

Needless to say it never got off the ground except for some lively discussions in the googlegroup my Daughter set up (steelheadcity@googlegroups.com, by the way). I couldn't draw a beaver, and the one other symbol we kept coming back to was the Lighthouse on Miss Katt's property, the one landmark that's been there since it was Ambertown and will always be there to light the way for Neo-Victorian residents and mainlanders alike.

I'm not saying it's official, very little in Steelhead ever is. But if someone has a better idea..run it up the flagpole and see who salutes it!

~Dr. Mason


I'm hot on the trail of the one who taught me so much, so long ago. I am close..I can feel it. But again, I am pulled away by distractions.

First in the Township of Tombstone, two new Apache tribes have moved in and are raiding, killing, and kidnapping the womenfolk in the town. They must have learned this behavior from the Gor tribes around Steelhead. The men are concerned that the women may not want to come back. I'm still trying to figure that one out..

I offered to speak to their medicine woman, healer to healer..to arrange a peace. But the Apaches only joked that medicine men take longer to stew.

Then, Madmoiselle Sperber asks me to take the Demon back. Now of all times, when I'm ready to bring closure to the one void that was left in my life, before I went to war and surrendered my sanity to the cannon fire, and let the Demon run my life for me!

But wait, it gets worse. Sheriff Thaddeus summons me and tells me that low down undertaker, Rock Acronym, is back in town. I consider heading back to Steelhead to get my revolvers and challenge him at high noon. The the Sheriff tells me that he looks ill..that he might have caught something from the brothel in that other Tombstone.

Now I'm conflicted..do I cure him..or kill him? I look in my kit for the spool of wire and a candle.

Oh yes. If he doesn't shoot me on sight, I'll cure him. And cure him good..

But before I can track him down..as if the rest of you haven't figured out, the universe imploded. The Beta grid doesn't work either. *sigh*

~Dr. Mason

Monday, July 30

In Our Absence..

Sir Drinkwater's neighbor Mr. Mesmer was extremely generous in the contribution of a psychic energy collector and and..an orb whose function escapes me at the moment..to me in honor of the upcoming Regency Hospital. The psychic battery, I have experienced, can induce a hypnotic state in the viewer, making it an alternative to anaesthesia in special cases.

ARI has wandered off to pursue her own destiny, as clockwork dolls so often tend to do. In her place I've assembled a new daughter, Hinako Kohime. I took the opportunity to debut her at one of Kiralette's spontaneous raving parties in her Kittiswitch garden.

Later I received a special invitation from Guvna Shang to see Lapin Paris and Major Viderian receive high honors for their selflessness in helping with the Relay for Life.

In the meantime Koen and I have undertaken an expedition to Sumatra for..a family matter. Qli will handle Foundation affairs in the meantime.

I pray I find what we're looking for before the hospital opens. I know I will never feel complete until I do.

~Dr. Mason

Thursday, July 26

Friday is Qlippothic's Rezday..

And she will be hosting her favorite event, Robot Rampage, in Steelhead's Kokopelli Square. Sheriff Fuzzball's sister Angelica will be Guest DJ.

Dress like a robot, android, cyborg, gynoid, golem or what have you. If you don't have such an avatar, Qli found a stockpile of Doctor Steel robot casings that her evil sister had tucked away that she can give you.

Our sponsor will be the sim of Koreshan Point and their charity, the Committee to Bring Back Crimson Falls. The Bloodwing family shops there often. My "epidemic outfit" is spliced from two outfits I purchased there. Qlippothic can attest to the stores that cater to the Dolls of Second Life. And Koen tells me that is where all the "kewl" nekos shop for urban gear.

Koreshan Point stands on the original site of Crimson Falls. The island of Crimson Falls was an asylum for unfortunates stricken ill by a strain of vampirism that made them all go quite mad. It plays a critical part in my history. It was there that Bloodwing received the face we all know him by from a resident demoness. When that demoness was struck down by the Lindens for reasons too gruesome to elaborate here, we used her remains to create Qlippothic as a last act of devotion. Even if her soul had gone on to its final reward, part of her would still live on.

The head of Koreshan Point is Miss Draconic Lioncourt. Do visit her journal, and Koreshan Point. But be warned..it may look like an abandoned amusement park, but some horrors from the Falls still linger in the shadows!

~Dr. Mason

Wednesday, July 25

"So that my wings do not cry any more blood, such is my sorrow."

I asked her, if as the carrier of my co-creator, she was now my parent. She only shrugged, "If you wish it."

Already she grows tired of the Curse. Like Narcissus hopelessly enamoured of his own reflection, her obsession is now in the one place she cannot reach..inside herself. She would not, or could not don the demon's face. That may have been too traumatic for me as well.

What now?


Tuesday, July 24

That Demon has more lives than a neko..

[11:00] latourangelle Sperber: Darien , Jfound the skin clown nija male ,thank you for this gift

NOW things get interesting.

Madame Bloodwing, I presume?

~Dr. Mason

window-shopping therapy

A new associate pointed me towards Caliber's store in Eyre. My jaw dropped at the exquisite details of the medical paraphernalia. I want them all. I must have them. It will just be a matter of pacing and priority..

chasing the ghosts of time

I barely had time to adjust to the emptiness inside when alarms sounded across the aether. The Martians were spotted in Caledon again. There was some panic fire, a necromantic spell that refused to obey its creator..and Mr. Barthelmess watching us like hawks. He was pleasant enough to converse with..perhaps because he knew I was "only" a human and not a supernatural. To paraphrase Oscar Wilde, if you can't be good at least be polite.

To be honest? It was a fiasco. While this may have been a sighting, this was certainly not an invasion. Most likely they were testing out defenses. With the militias gone, I fear we are vulnerable again, and not just to the Martians.

Dr. Figaro and I couldn't agree on where to set up a field hospital since the militia tents were gone. Luckily there were no injuries except for a fall from a case of extreme drunkenness. The sooner we build Regency Hospital the better!

we don't cry for gods that die by our hands

Yes, I feel an emptiness. But in emptiness there is hope. Like an alcoholic looking at a bottle and feeling no urge to reach for it, that..addiction..is gone. I am mortal now, and I have only one lifetime to atone for millenia of misdeeds and a path of broken hearts leading all the way back to Hell.

Now I am free to pursue my call to duty..to the Hospital. Do I even bear the name anymore? Do I fold the symbol of the Wings and Raise the Red Cross on the Foundation instead?

Is the demon truly gone? The face at least, which is irreplacable..but that was not his first guise. And already it seems,
he has a successor..

~Dr. Mason

Monday, July 23

The End of the Demon

The Mademoiselle would not give up. She insisted on summoning Bloodwing. Even after the demon surrendered his immortality and fused with his human incarnation. It felt like I was being crushed and sifted against the jagged boundaries of reality itself as the ghostly essence erupted from my body.

No. Not again, I thought. I looked up and could see Bloodwing felt the same way. There was no ecstasy of freedom in his grin, no rage in his clenched fists. His astral self was hairless and hornless, crimson eyes were sullen with the ennui of immortality. Finally he had found a worthy end, and now the one loose thread was pulling it all apart.

Bloodwing looked down at me, a faint glimmer of crimson still left in his eyes. He pressed his pallid hands against my chest as he extricated himself from me.

"You stay here, Seventh Child. You've suffered enough. She wants the demon, she'll get the demon! Tell Emilly I.."

I was thrown clear. Even as I hit the marble floor I could feel the cold emptiness inside. He had completely severed his essence from mine. Even in the week that we both walked the Earth when he possessed my clone I still felt his presence inside me. No longer.

The memories of what he was began to fade. I pitied the woman who unwittingly became the successor of the Curse..who would wake up in the morning and look in the mirror and smirk, "Je suis Bloodwing!"

I sat there for an hour, trying to make sense of what happened. Then my aether transmitter rattled out a telegram..badly translated..but the essense was clear.

[11:53] latourangelle Sperber: dsl IN did not include/understand your offers and Jhad to refuse those ci

Refuse? She ripped the Demon from my very soul and she aborted the spell? Then where..

I took a deep breath..and looked deep into my soul..

BLOODWING--> All Items--> No matching items found in inventory.

That face..was gone. The demoness who bestowed it to him had been struck down by the Lindens themselves..most likely for staging profane rituals on other people's lands. He recovered her bones and wrapped them in clay to make our daughter Qlippothic. Only once did he ever see another with the same Kabuki Dragon mask pattern for a skin.

She wanted him. But now..she destroyed him.

Despite all his manipulations..all the pain he caused me and others..even endangering our deva himself..he deserved a more fitting ending. He will surely be missed.

~Dr. Mason

Saturday, July 21

Hairy Eyeball and the Chamberpot of Secrets

Yes, it was that kind of night. The Sheriff was dour at first, from the Jobias sighting and from the lack of attendance. I assured him that partygoers were travelling from event to event. The candles were floating, as were the skulls and Christine's Hairy Eyeball of Death. (Which I am corrected is a male floating eyeball. Note the lack of conditioner.)

Near the end we did descended from Potter into Potty humor. I'm going to have to speak to the management about this. If we have bobbing swirlie-skulls at Qlippothic's Rezday party on Friday she will not be amused.

And in fact we had a decent gathering. Miss Alexandra won the prize for Best Witch and Emilly's partner Wallen *cough* Allen won Best Wizard, with gracious thanks from Tensai Designs.

~Dr. Bloodwing

Friday, July 20

A Wonderful Fund-Raver! (Now with piccie goodness!)

My initially clumsy attempts to get backing for Caledon Regency Hospital have paid off! Duchess Gabrielle was in a giddy mood and looking for an excuse to throw a rave. Serendipity! Lady Christine's cake was scrumptuous..I think little Jess ate half of it herself! Even a minor fairy infestation, the pair of dueling DALEKs that appear whenever someone plays that song, and an ominous cameo by the relentless Jobias Barthelmess failed to put a damper on our evening!

During the dance I did sense that a dear friend was close to death. When no one was looking I cast an illusion of myself in a dancing loop and left the Foundation to teleport to her side and deliver vital first aid. Saying she needed no further assistance, I folded space back to the event, grabbed myself a slice of cake, and no one was the wiser.

My deepest thanks to the Duchess Riel, Miss Chapman, Lady Christine, little Jess, and EVERYONE who made this event spectacular! I only hope the Harry Potter Ball I'm hosting tonight in Steelhead's Kokopelli Square will be just as..magical!

~Dr. Bloodwing

P.S. *slaps his hor..I mean forehead* By the Styx! I could have had a Duchess Sandwich!! *grumbles*

Thursday, July 19


Found in the Post Box at Polymath

I had assumed the doctor leaves me this teaching aids. Now, I'm not so sure..

Coming Soon: Caledon Regency Hospital! (Addendum)

I received a letter from the Guvnah today..I am being offered the chance to buy land in the next island to rise from the depths of the Caledon Sea! Perhaps my dream of a fully staffed and equipped Hospital will finally come to fruition! I must act quickly. Very quickly..

..And just as quickly I received a donation from Lady Darkling Elytis and a very generous donation from Miss Carolynne Chapman, who asked for an administrative position in return. I'm already looking for desks.

Please remember that this is a public service for Caledon and its neighbors. While Miss Lumina can build another structure with the same footprint as the Bloodwing Foundation, I would probably make do with a small office and a cot in one corner. The rest of the structure will be for your benefit.

I will be at the Foundation tonight..I'll throw a salon to pitch the idea to whomever is in a philanthropic mood.

My Thanks to my Loyal Readers,

~Dr. Bloodwing

P.S. I will be holding a fundraiser at the Bloodwing Foundation in Steelhead tonight, starting at 7pm.

Also, my apologies to Mr. Eclipse. Unlike some Caledonians, I am not skilled in fundraising etiquette.

Wednesday, July 18

A Food Table for the Reanimated

A Balanced Diet For Zombies

Here at the Bloodwing Foundation, we take care of our clientele.

If you are among the reanimated, and are a concerned about obtaining a balanced source of nutrition, please consult the chart below, courtesy of Doctor Mason.

Tuesday, July 17

The Doctor is IN Tombstone (Take #3)

What is it about vengeful architects who insist on burning down what they created? Once again I received apologies from the Authorities. And again Ive a new office in Tombstone Sim, on the spot where the last one once stood. It's smaller than before but there's wiser use of space. Except for sealing off the second floor that is..

And what I am truly delighted to tell you is the Caledon Red Cross has entered an agreement with Tombstone Sim. All of our Doctors and Nurses will be on call for emergencies there as well as Steelhead and Caledon. (And believe me, they need it!) And in return, should a disaster occur in the other territories (Should we call them the Victorian League?) like, oh say..a werewolf attack or alien invasion..we will have a posse of gunslingers and Apaches riding in like the Cavalry to help where it is needed.

Now..could someone tell me why there are ten-foot wide hoofprints ground into my front yard, and why those same prints tracked dirt onto my second floor?

Starting a trend..

And a distant cousin..

Sunday, July 15

Regarding You-Know-What

Qlippothic and I had no involvement in the Militia games, and we were blissfully ignorant of the fiasco brewing when we intervened in the Martian invasion. I wish we had remained so.

What I can tell you as that we had a GREAT time with our volunteer roles. The only complaint Qli had is actually a longstanding problem. Unless she is given the rights to delete objects in Caledon sims she can't put out any fires! Usually there is a Duchess in the CVFB on hand to extinguish such flames effectively but not in this instance..so she made herself a casulty instead (twice.)

Qli extremely enjoyed the dogfights with the orbs..but she wonders if there is evidence that her weaponry did any real damage..

And since she had to log out, she decided to go down in flames. Luckily anndroids are easy to put back together.

As for me, I was glad to offer my services at the M*A*S*H unit, even if I only had one patient. A rabbi one said, "If you save one life it is if you have saved the world." I spent the rest of the nigt tending to the wounds of NPCs.

I hope we can get this all behind us and come out wiser and closer in our common love of Caledon!

~Dr. Bloodwing

Saturday, July 14

We Danced in Victory

I hosted the Military Ball last night in Steelhead. I tool my old Dominion outfit out of mothballs just for the occasion. I hadn't worn it in a decade..when the Capper Brigade was still only a secret platoon of Captioneers.

I still carried my medic harness, my "epidemic outfit" as Tensai called it. I still carried the reanimation serum with me even while directing Caledon's victory over the extraterrestrials. I am still holding my breath for the next wave of orbs.

The Foundation sponsored the event as I couldn't find anyone else. I think I broke even..hopefully the advertisement I placed will bring more patients.

I am honored to announce that Dr. Figaro and I have arranged a partnership between the Bloodwing Foundation and the Red Cross of Caledon. I am now Co-owner of the RCC, and Dr. Figaro is now has full access to the Foundation. Now the Foundation can offer its pioneering medical research to the masses through the Red Cross in times of crisis!

Afterwards I welcomed Steelhead's Managers back to town. Mrs. Hilra seems to have fully recovered from her simian transformation except for a banana craving.

I held an open house to show off the expanded gallery space and Lumina's renovation of my private quarters. I displayed my new robotic servant WILSON (Wheeled Intelligent Light Service Operations aNdroid), recently shipped from Avaria and assembled. He is much better at complicated and delicate tasks like cleaning and cooking than IGOR, who I first designed for building, grave excavation and security. WILSON is more intelligent, and certainly less intimidating.

I received a gift from the artist Mr. Ellisdee for displaying his works..a book encapsulating all of his works thus far in Second Life. He called it his own "qlippothic project".

I checked up on my Qlippothic afterwards. She hadn't rebuilt her legs yet. She was despondent. She told me Qlippothic Steele had come to visit her. But she would not tell me what said. She is now more distraught than ever.

~Dr. Bloodwing

Thursday, July 12

The Day the Grid Stood Still

Aliens. Aliens attacked Caledon tonight..just like Qli's futureself told us they would. At fist, Qli shrugged off the reports of aliens as a drunken hoax. The fires were probably caused by black powder in these wargames Caledon was playing.Lady Darkling had already put out a fire earlier in the day with magic. But when Qli tried to put out a flame in Kittiwickshire she completely unprepared. That was a plasma flame burning as hot as the sun itself!

It burned away her clothing and her dermal layer exposing the metal casing beneath. Thank goodness Baroness Amber and Sir Book flew in to take her to safety.

Once she landed in Tanglewood (or rather fell off the blimp) I teleported her Repair Chamber to her, where she tried to regenerate her dermal layer, but failed. It instead replaced the metal with porcelain for her Doll form. She was repaired, but far too vulnerable to perform what would be required of her.

When the distress calls came in she without hesitation jumped back into the Repair Chamber, setting the overrides to equip herself in full steam powered battle armour..the "Omega Configuration".

Soon the aether was burning with chatter, some from the aliens themselves. Quickly the militia converged on the site where the aliens landed.

That's when all Hell broke loose. She circled the evil orbs in aerial battle, weaving through the spires of Victoria City, emptying repeating rifle ammunition at the spheres until the breech melted. She was struck by plasma bolts several times..but this form could survive the heat of a volcano. Even then her armour disintegrated from the onslaught.

The militia regrouped in Mayfair. Frustrated by the lack of visible results of sustained rifle attacks upon the invaders, she turned the weaponry she procured in the Dark Future. I'm not sure if she was able to rip their metal hulls with her Talons, but the hypersonic titanium slugs she fired from her twin hand-cannons (shotguns seems inadequate to describe this awesome weaponry), knocking them out of trajectory several times, causing them to twitch like some form of seizure. One even landed to rest in a nearby field, presumably to repair itself. This was her finest hour. And that is how she fell, shot down by those searing rays from above.

That is how Koen fund her when the smoke cleared.in pieces. I can rebuild her of course. But I am too busy attending to the wounded in this makeshift hospital.

Just this once, I wish I could somehow become the Demon again..I would make these abominations PAY for what they've done to my child!

I was able to seal Mr. Book's chest wound with some herbs from Lady Darkling's garden. Watching nervously for glimpses of the aliens that floated in the woods across from us, I sent distress signals to Tombstone for reinforcements. I did not receive a definite answer. I was so desperate I even went to the other Tombstone for help. But I won't even begin to describe the reception I received there.

For now, I'm assisting in a makeshift hospital, I'm taking the time to write this now because the told me to lie down while they put a tube in my arm to rehydrate me with sugar water.

I'm going to try to sleep a bit..Nurse's orders..then get back to tending the wounded and the broken..if Caledon still exists come the dawn.

~Dr. Bloodwing

Tuesday, July 10

Post Mortem (with Addendum)

ADDENDUM: While testing fur samples, I was shocked to find that there was in fact an influence of Corruption upon this specimen, an unholy and malevolent magick as great as anything that ever rose from the pits of Erebus. Indeed, as witnessed by it's stunted growth, it was ireedeemably twisted towards the path of Destruction. The fact that these were holy blades that slew the beast only confirms it. This creature was not a part of the greater species of Lycans as we know them. I no longer expect any repercussions from their kind. If anything, they may wish to thank us.

P.S. My sincerest apologies to Lady Diamanda for doubting the importance of your hunt. We all have our own Demons to conquer.

~Dr. Bloodwing

Dear Sheriff,

I am sorry I was not able to take you along to see the body of the fallen Lycan, but Lady Diamanda had very little time available with her military maneuvers. I did examine the body, this one met a vicious end. I removed several silver bullets from his hide and noted several stab wounds from what must have been silver or enchanted blades. I begged her not to defile the corpse by taking it to a taxidermist, but she is hell-bent on mounting the wolf's head on her wall. She claims to know special circumstances that permit this, but she would not elaborate. Perhaps you can convince her..I pray so.

What would Neualtenberg have done if the Kaiserine's head had been mounted proudly over the Guvnah's office? It would have been total war, no quarter asked nor given.

That is what I see occurring. A foe attacking not with skyships and calvalry but with inhuman strength and speed armed bearing claw and fang.

Caledon is a proud nation, Sheriff, and rightfully so..but when that pride manifests as hubris and cultural imperialism, they are always surprised by the backlash. As always, the Foundation will take the high road and steer clear of warmongering. Our doors will be open to any who seek our aid, whether with open hand or paw.


~Dr. Bloodwing

Will Avatars Become Extinct?


Let me know when they get PgUp to work..

Sunday, July 8

The Hunt Continues

Sir Edward and Lady Paris threw a wonder Dark Victorian Ball above Tanglewood last night, marred only by the killing of an already-aggravated werewolf and the debate that ensued between the friends of another werewolf, the honorable Sheriff Ortega, and those who insisted the beast was a danger.

Yes the beast attacked someone, but this is normal behavior after being hunted through Caledon. As for trying to kidnap one of the ladies..also normal behavior for less cultured Lycan packs. I was invited to view to corpse this evening. I dread to see the poor creature's head mounted on a wall. Oh the things people get away with in the name of Charity!

There was further discussion afterwards in Darkling's grove, but nothing was resolved.

~Dr. Bloodwing

Friday, July 6

The Aftermath

I happily returned little Raivyn to Lady Amber and her husband Sir Book. My father Hades once told me, "A promise broken is a promise kept." Indeed, I sacrificed the only oath that kept me sane as a demon..my vow to reclaim my rank as Crown Prince of Erebus and one day usurp the throne of the Underworld.

But you know what? It was worth it. No longer do I have to struggle over my own identity. I answer as easily to "Dr. Mason" now as I do "Bloodwing". Yes..I can say my first name now..not as an adjective but as a proper noun without banishing myself. That is true power.

You could say it's a case of no more demon, but a sample I took of my blood still shows a trace amount of ichor. Only a trace. Not even enough to count as half-demon. A trace of immortality, which means..

Life has become much more precious to me. There is a solace in knowing that someday all will be forgotten.

Not enough ichor to follow the Path of the Incubus. I wouldn't want that part of my life to interfere with my work..

Which brings me back to my other hobby. I'm not driven to scavenge the battlefields or the graveyards anymore. I still possess the Spark, but it does not consume me. Revivification is but another tool among the many magicks that I still remember.

Already I've gone back to work, applying silver nitrate to unfortunates struck down during the unbelievably foolish sport of Werewolf Hunting.

So if you see me somewhere in this Current Victorian Age, you may address me by new title as a Physician, Scientist and Occultist..

Doctor Bloodwing.

Sir Gauss Magnusson
Baron of Storvik
Kingdom of Atlantia

May the gates of Valhalla open wide for you, my friend. Save a seat for me if you can.


Wednesday, July 4

The Rejoining, Part IV

I stared down at little Raivyn, her eyes shut, skin ashen and mouth stretched wide in a cry of hunger, baring a pair of small fangs.

"What are you waiting for?" Hades chuckled from the comfort of his throne. "Your little Mistress is hungry!"

Yes, what an exquisite punishment my father devised! Demotion from Crown Prince to Nursemaid for my replacement! I would have to balance carefully how much of my own blood to feed her and when...to keep her content and at the same time prevent my own life force from being drained away.

I looked back at Hades as I slowly rolled up my sleeve. "If she is a vampire, then she cannot age.."

"With your ichor, she shall slowly grow to maturity..very slowly indeed.."

Calmly I offered my wrist to the infant, pressing it gently to her mouth. Instantly I felt the fangs sink into my vein. After a few seconds she ceased feeding, and I hurriedly rubbed my wrist as I whispered incantations to seal the small wounds. I heard coughing sounds from the bassinet and looked down with concern.

"What is wrong?" Growled Hades. "Barely a minute at your new station and you have already failed? Your punishment shall be.."

"Hold, Father!" I raised my hand as I peered more closely. With the Doctor's skill I picked Raivyn up in my arms and examined her. Her skin was flushed pink, her pulse and heat beat fast, but normal for a human infant.

"As you see, Father, I have achieved my first success in raising your new Princess by curing her of her vampirism with the antidote in my bloodstream!"

The Death God rose from his throne. "IMPOSSIBLE! Cerberus would have smelled such treachery and torn you to pieces!"

I grinned, as my language shifted to Latin..reflection of the old Senator's wordsmithing that would have done any Devil proud! I cradled Raivyn protectively in my arms.

"This was the Doctor's idea, and the Demon only followed in blind trust! And as the Doctor was unconscious until the merging so there was no treachery to sense! Further there was no antidote until you merged us, Father! We each consumed half the formula during what would have otherwise been a very enjoyable breakfast. The Doctor, being only human, fell deathly ill from his portion, but it was a risk he gladly took."

Hades clenched his massive obsidian hands into trembling fists as I continued.

"Since Princess Raivyn is cured of vampirism she is devoid of any evil taint. As a newborn she is free of any shadow of sin whatsoever!"

With that Raivyn belched onto my robe a substance I shall not describe.

"That does not count. Now where was I? Oh yes! By Your Majesty's own rule, no innocent may dwell in the Court of Erebus! Therefore it is my duty as her duly appointed Guardian to escort her back to the world of the living!"

The steel floor shook as the King of Erebus approached and crouched to look me dead in the eyes. Even when I was close enough to feel the heat in his angry eyes they were still lost in a sea of absolute darkness with the rest of his face.

"YOU, impudent DEMON, CANNOT take the Princess to the Upper World, for YOU are NOT innocent!"

I stared back calmly as I repeated my earlier statement.

"Did you not hear me, Father? I REPENT!"

Hades took a step back as pure light radiated from my body.

"I do not repent betraying you..In doing so I had sought to overcome Good and Evil both by twisting my soul into a Paradox..but now I see.."

The twin serpents, who had embodied my darkest traits, tore through their hiding spaces under my shoulder blades, and for the first time ever they completely extricated themselves from their host body, finding it uninhabitable. They writhed on the floor helplessly.

"The answer is..APOTHEOSIS! I renounce any claim to your throne or the Court of Erebus! I abandon the Path of the Incubus! I exorcise the Demon from my own soul! I REJECT ETERNAL LIFE! I EMBRACE MORTALITY!!"

I spread my crimson batlike wings, which immediately sprouted scarlet feathers. As the Demon King lunged for me I rose skyward with the child in my arms, buoyed by Divine favour.

Monday, July 2

The Rejoining, Part III

"Look into my eyes, Bloodwing."

So spake the ruler of he Underworld, and I obeyed. I had not cast eyes upon my Father for thousands of years..my last banishment was straight to the glacier. But I was struck by what I saw..or rather did not see. It was like staring at a silhouette. I made out the outline of his bald head from where it contrasted with his opulent golden crown. I could gauge from his shape where his features were. I was struck by how much my Dwarven brother Steelwolf's demon form resembled our Father..only ten times as large.

"You have trapped yourself in yet another conceit, I see."

He rose from his throne with the gentle rush of his dark velvet robes. I looked down as his massive sandal rolled the Doctor over a couple times to face upwards again.

"What brings you here. And know you cannot lie to me."

"I..I repent."

Long moments of silence. Even the screams of the damned souls outside died down to eavesdrop.

"Repentance, my deluded son, must be done with whole spirit. You cannot possibly remember all that you must atone to me when you are split like this. Which I shall rectify."

It felt as if a boulder had wrapped itself around my head and slammed me into the Doctor's body. This evil deity ripped apart souls and consumed them for sustenance. But now he was crushing two halves together with no attempt at subtlety.

The Doctor's psyche poured into my soul, inexorably mingling our essences. As we..I..was overwhelmed from both sides, more facets poured in. The Elizabethan explorer. The Roman legionnaire turned Senator. The buccaneer. These and many more masks dissolved into mine..every incarnation I had ever assumed among men was now as immediate to me as the Doctor and the Demon at my core.

"I have a chore for you, Prodigal."

With that the rattling of chains echoes in the chamber as some sort of metal box lowered to the bare chamber floor, clattering at my feet where the Doctor's body had once lay. The last thing I expected to see inside was an infant, eyes crimson and fangs bared in primal vampiric hunger.

"You shall raise this child as your daughter, and raise her as I raised you. She shall be a more worthy heir than you or your stunted brother or the trace of succubus in your machine you call a daughter. Indeed, she was born of a Baroness, was she not?"

My eyes widened as I gazed down at her features. Even through the mask of Undeath I could tell this was Baroness Palowakski's kidnapped daughter!

The Rejoining, Part II

Charon looked puzzled as I boarded his skiff with the Doctor slung over my shoulder. Quietly his skeletal hands slowly paddled down the deceptively placid waters of the Styx. I gazed out at the dark mists, the glowing lights of the black ferns along the banks our only guide. Finally, a gentle jolt as we embanked on the shores of Erebus. The iron capitol of Dis loomed before me, billowing jets of flame. I reached into my pouch and offered four gold coins, but he raised two skeletal fingers. Curious.

I carried my mortal half over the smooth cobblestones until I stared at the six burning eyes of Cerberus. Triple growls greeted me as streams of saliva oozed from swordlength fangs.


The beast lay down, several eyes looking up at me quietly.

"Good boys."

I continued through the gunmetal streets, past horrors that only counted as distractions to on born in this realm.

The twin sentinels towered over me at the gates to my Father's palace. I continued past them as I felt their reptilian eyes follow me beneath their spiked helmets.

Nothing had changed since I was the favored son in that place. Not a damned thing. I knew exactly which passages to take towards the center, towards the lowest level until the last doors opened for me. As soon as I saw the mountainous throne, glittering with jewels inset in the bones of slain abominations, I kneeled, laying the Doctor at my feet.

"Back so soon, errant whelp?" The voice of Hades boomed, rattling the steel walls.

"Yes, Father."

Sunday, July 1

The Rejoining, Part I

Dr. Mason collapsed during breakfast and had to be carried back to the hotel.. Bloodwing tried to revive him, but to no avail. That is when my demon-father told me Koen and I what I had suspected but dreaded to hear.

The cloning procedure was flawed from its conception. Neither body could survive with but half a soul. The Doctor's necromantic arts had sustained him thus far, and the demon clung to his second body by sheer force of will.

"Daughter", Bloodwing said. "One way or another the Foundation must survive. And this Current Victorian Age..and the Ages to follow..need a pioneer of medicine more that it needs an exiled demon-prince. Do you know the one thing that is almost impossible for a demon to commit, sweet Qli?"

My jaw dropped. "No Father..you can't mean.."

With that he held me tight, enshrouding my with crimson wings. He whispered his love, and his orders. He turned to Koen and did the same, though the cat protested.

The Demon scooped the nearly lifeless Doctor in his arms. Then he said the three words I never thought I would hear him say.


With that the sky darkened and the wind howled outside like in my nightmare before. The door flung open to the chaos outside. Just as the door slammed shut behind him a wall of pure darkness fell over them both. Moments later the darkness gave way to the morning rays again. Both my fathers had vanished without a trace.

"What did he mean?" asked Koen.
"The one thing against a demon's primal nature", I said, "is self-sacrifice."