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It's not easy to bargain with demons, which Eddie discovers the hard way after he escapes death by trading his soul to the demon Azir, a handsome and charming resident of Hell. Azir promises to return Eddie's soul in exchange for allowing demons the use of his body for their own amusement. It's the last deal he wants to make, but if he wants to save his soul, it may be his only choice.
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After nearly dying, Eddie meets Azir, a charming demon with an indecent proposition. Before Eddie makes his choice, he lets Azir take his body for a test drive, and discovers many things about demons that he never knew.
There are many common-sense rules to live by, and I just managed to break three of them in one go: never wear black when walking at night, never cross against a red light, and never make a deal with the devil. So, there I am, lying in the street, the taste of blood in my mouth as I struggle to draw breath, and this guy walks up and looks down at me. He seemed like a normal guy, except for the absolute lack of any kind of human compassion in his eyes. He stared at me like I was some bug he couldn’t care less about stepping on.
“Boy, are you in a pickle or what?” he said, crouching down beside me. “That is a lot of blood. And I’m no expert on human anatomy, but I don’t think your arms and legs are supposed to bend like that. But I guess bouncing off a windshield, a telephone pole, and the street will do that to you.” He leaned closer, a flickering light dancing in the depths of his dark eyes. “You’re dying, Eddie. Can you feel it? Your life fading with each desperate beat of your heart?”
I wasn’t sure which was more frightening, that I could feel it, or that he knew my name.
“Are you ready to die, Eddie?” he asked. “In about two minutes, your heart will stop and your brain will cease to function, and you will find out what, if anything, waits for you on the other side. Are you ready for that? Or do you want to live?”
I tried to answer, but it came out as a sob, bloody bubbles flecking my lips.
“I can save you,” the strange man whispered, holding his hand out to me. “All you have to do is take my hand and give me your soul.”
My eyes widened, a shiver of terror racing through my body. The only creatures who collected souls were demons.
He smiled, warm and charming. “Relax, Eddie, I won’t take your soul as long as you’re using it. Think of this like a lien. You keep your soul until you die, and then it comes to us, assuming you haven’t earned it back, of course. What do you say? Better think quick—time is running out.”
I could feel the blood pooling in my chest, restricting my heart and filling my lungs. I didn’t want to die, but losing my soul to a demon would be worse. However, if there was a chance to earn it back, then I could have it both ways. I could live and keep my soul.
Summoning every ounce of strength that remained in my broken body, I raised my hand, a scream of agony escaping my bloody lips as the splinters of bone protruding through my flesh shifted.
“I’ll take that as a yes,” the demon said, grabbing my hand. Instantly, the pain vanished and I gasped as he pulled my to my feet. I looked down at myself in shock. The blood was gone. No bones were broken. It was like I’d never been hit. I turned to look at the car that had struck me, the hood crumpled where it had come to rest against a tree, steam issuing from the engine. I could see the driver, face down in the deflated airbag and not moving.
“Are they all right?” I asked, taking an unsteady step toward the car.
“Eddie,” the demon said, placing an arm around my shoulders and turning me away. “That guy nearly killed you. Who cares how he’s doing?”
I shrugged his arm off. “I do.”
The demon sighed. “Of course you do. He’ll be fine. A bit of a concussion and some bruised ribs. Oh, and one hell of a hangover. He’s more than a little drunk. Does that affect your concern for his well-being?”
I hesitated. “Maybe a little.”
“Good. Maybe there’s hope for you yet,” the demon said with a broad grin. “Now, if you’ll excuse me—”
“Hang on,” I said as he turned to leave. “You said I could earn my soul back. How do I do that?”
“Why should I tell you?” he replied. “If you don’t succeed, we get your soul, so how is it in my best interest to help you?”
He had me there. I could only watch, helpless, as he walked away. He only took a few steps, though, before he paused and glanced back, his flickering gaze traveling slowly down my body.
“You’re a handsome guy,” he said, making me shudder and wonder, how far would I go to save my soul? However, his next question surprised me. “How do you feel about demonic possession?”
“Excuse me? Is there more than one way to feel about demonic possession?”
My savior laughed, a rich, melodious sound. “Let me rephrase. What do you know about it?”
I shrugged. “The usual, I guess. A demon takes over a person and makes them do terrible things, with the intent to steal their soul.”
He made an ambiguous gesture with his hand. “Close enough.” Up the street, a siren screamed to life, the night lighting up with red and blue lights as an ambulance finally appeared. “Come on, let’s get out of here before we have to answer a lot of tedious questions.”
I felt awkward leaving the scene of an accident, but I supposed he was right. If I stayed, I would only have to lie, or risk being tossed into the psych ward. After all, only crazy people claimed to have been saved from death by a demon. We hurried down the street and around a corner.
“Okay, here’s the quick and dirty version,” the demon said. “True possessions are very rare, because there are few demons powerful enough to inhabit an unwilling human. I’m not, and I’m a third tier demon, so you get the idea. So, most ‘possessions’ are either lunatics or sociopaths working on their insanity defense. However, even a lowly sixth tier imp can inhabit a willing body temporarily. The hard part is finding someone willing to share.”
He gave me a pointed look and I stopped dead as I realized what he was hinting at.
“Wait, I’m supposed let you possess me?” I asked.
“Of course not,” he said. “You’re going to let a bunch of my demon lackeys possess you. You see,” he continued as I stared at him in horror, “when a demon takes corporeal form, the experience is severely limited. We can see and hear, and have the most basic sense of touch, but no smell or taste, and we don’t feel pleasure or pain. And the worst part is this.” He unbuttoned and unzipped his jeans, shoving them down to mid-thigh.
“Oh, my God,” I gasped, my eyes widening at the sight of his smooth, featureless groin. He had no cock, no balls, nothing.
“Yeah, I’ve always suspected this was His doing,” the demon grumbled, pulling his pants back up. “So, Eddie, I’m sure you imagine how appealing it would be for one of us to take a joyride in a sexy hot rod like you. I’d like to offer the use of your body to a few of my most dedicated underlings. Perhaps it will even motivate the slackers to do better.”
“The use of my...to do what with?” I asked.
“Oh, you know,” he said. “Eat pizza and ice cream, get a massage, have sex. Nothing illegal, nothing that will harm you or anyone else. I’ll only offer this privilege to responsible demons, ones that I know will follow my rules.”
“So...so, I just...let them in and then wake up in a couple of days in bed with someone I’ve never met before?”
“Wow, you are so quick to think the worst of us,” the demon said, shaking his head. “You would be completely aware of everything that was happening. You could tune it out, of course, if you wanted to. And you could take back control at any time. However, booting one of my demons after less than...let’s say two hours, won’t count toward erasing our claim on your soul.”
“So, if I agree to this, I get my soul back?” I asked. The demon nodded. “How many is a few?”
“Oh, just a hundred or so,” he said. I started to shake my head, to tell him he was crazy, but he didn’t give me the chance. “I know it sounds like a lot, but think about it this way—two hours a day, and in less than four months, your soul will be yours again, free and clear. It seems like a fair trade to me.”
“Yeah, well, it’s not your body they’ll be abusing,” I grumbled.
“Very true,” the demon said. “But then, I don’t have a body, just this worthless rental unit, so...” He stopped walking and regarded me with his flickering eyes. “Say, how about a quick test drive? That way, you can see what it would be like before you decide.”
I hesitated. “Who would I be letting in? You?”
“Sure. Why not? I did save your life, after all.”
This was such a bad idea. “Okay, but not here. I want to be home for this.”
The demon smiled and gestured behind me. I turned, surprised to see that we were standing on the sidewalk in front of my house. I hadn’t even noticed where we were walking.
“Shall we?” the demon asked, motioning for me to lead the way.
I swallowed hard. “First, I need to know one thing. What’s your name?”
The demon narrowed his eyes. “Why? Do you think you can control me if you know my name?”
“No, I’d just like to know what to call you,” I said. “Is that true?”
“Sort of,” he replied evasively. “A sufficiently powerful witch who has trained extensively in the dark arts and demonology could use a demon’s name to control them, so we tend to be a little careful with such information.”
“Understandable, I guess,” I said, shivering as a gust of wind bit through my thin jacket. I headed for the house, digging my keys out of my pocket as I climbed the steps up to the porch. “I’m not a witch, nor do I know any witches, but if you don’t want to tell me, it’s okay. I’d like to call you something, though. Do you have a nickname? What do your friends call you?” I stopped to unlock my front door.
He snorted, and I realized just how close he was, standing right behind me. “You really don’t know anything about demons, do you? I don’t have any friends. But if you insist, you can call me...Azir.”
“Azir will work,” I said, shoving open the door and hurrying inside to put a bit of distance between us. He followed, shutting the door and turning on the entryway light. “So, can I get you anything? Something to drink, maybe?”
“Maybe in a minute, once I’m able to taste it,” Azir said, backing me up against the wall. I suddenly couldn’t breathe as the demon’s hands pressed against my chest, his face inches from my own. He smiled, slow and amused. “This is a lot like sex, Eddie—you have to relax and let me in.” Azir leaned closer, his breath cold against my cheek as he whispered, “Don’t be afraid, I won’t hurt you.”
I didn’t know if I could trust him. Part of me was screaming that he was a fucking demon, of course he couldn’t be trusted, but for some reason, I seemed to remember hearing that demons couldn’t lie. They could trick and deceive, but they could not tell an outright lie. Or maybe that was just something I saw on television. Either way, I had only two choices, and neither one appealed.
I could tell him to get lost, and spend the rest of my life knowing that my soul was doomed to hell, or I could surrender and let him have me. After a moment, I took a bracing breath and closed my eyes. As I exhaled, I made myself relax, trying to trust that, even if a demon couldn’t be trusted, at the very least he wouldn’t do anything to make me call off the deal.
A wave of dizziness washed over me, followed by a warm pressure in my chest, like I had swallowed hot soup too fast. As it passed, my eyes opened and I was surprised to find Azir gone. I started to look around, to see where he had gone, but my head wouldn’t turn. I tried to raise my arm, but it wouldn’t move. I was no longer in control of my body.
My body gasped and my hands rose up to touch my face, fingers tracing my lips and sliding back through my hair.
“Oh, this is amazing,” Azir said in my voice, my lips moving without without my consent. It was a strange feeling, to say the least. He stepped away from the wall, my hands wandering down my body, feeling the texture of my jacket. He shrugged it off, letting it fall to the floor behind him. I wanted to pick it up and hang it in the closet, but he walked away, wandering through the house just touching stuff. He went into the kitchen and opened the fridge.
“You must live alone,” he murmured, picking up a bottle of ketchup and a hunk of cheese wrapped in a plastic baggie. He opened the ketchup and sniffed the contents, then licked the inside of the lid. He made an appreciative noise and set it down, then unwrapped the cheese and nibbled on the corner.
There’s beer in the crisper drawer, I thought to myself.
“Really? Thanks,” Azir said, setting the cheese down and opening the drawer.
Wait, you can hear me? I asked.
“Hear might not be the right word,” he replied, picking up a bottle of my favorite IPA and twisting off the cap. “I know what you’re thinking, the same way you do. It’s kind of weird.” He took a long drink from the bottle. “Ahhhh, I’ve always wondered what beer tasted like. Now I know.” He set the bottle on the counter and headed out of the room.
So, are you just going to make a mess of my house? I asked. That’s not what I expected from a demonic possession.
“Would you rather I find some virgin to disembowel?” Azir asked with a grin as he started up the stairs.
No! Of course not, I said. I guess I just thought you’d do more.
“Oh, I’m just getting started,” the demon said. He entered my bedroom and pawed through my closet, smelling the fabric softener and rubbing his cheek against one of my softer shirts. His gaze lingered on the bed, but he walked into the adjoining bathroom instead, tasting the toothpaste and mouthwash. “Mmmm, that’s better than the beer,” he said and took another sip.
You’re supposed to spit that out, I told him. Don’t go making me sick.
He grunted his displeasure, but leaned over the sink and spat out the mouthwash. He sniffed my deodorant and aftershave, and then opened the door of the shower stall.
Nothing in here is edible, I said, hoping to prevent him from tasting the soap. He just turned on the water, letting the spray patter against my hand as he adjusted the temperature. Stepping back from the stall, he began to remove my clothes. What are you doing?
“I would have thought that was obvious,” Azir said, my voice muffled as he stripped my shirt off over my head. Steam began to fill the room and I cringed inwardly, imagining the black mold beginning to grow in the corners.
Could you at least turn on the exhaust fan? I asked. He obliged, flipping the switch before shoving my jeans and boxers down around my ankles and stepping out of them. Nude, he admired my reflection in the mirror. It was bizarre: even though it was my body, my face, I felt like I was looking at a stranger.
The demon dressed in my flesh stepped into the shower, groaning low and long as the hot water cascaded over my skin.
“Azrael was right,” he said, my voice echoing in the enclosed space. “This is positively sinful.” He turned a slow circle, savoring the pounding spray, and I realized with no small amount of horror that my body was reacting to his enjoyment. I was getting a hard-on.
Okay, test drive is over, get outta my body, I said.
“Make me,” he moaned, running slippery hands down my smooth, flat abs, toward my stiffening cock. That’s when I knew he had tricked me. I had forgotten to ask how to get him out.
Begone, demon! I thought forcefully, imagining myself physically shoving him out of my body. He just laughed.
“That tickles,” he said. “So does this.” He faced the shower, letting the spray dance over my hard cock. “What a surprisingly sensitive organ,” he said, wrapping a hand around my shaft and giving it a long, slow stroke. I felt so dirty, so violated.
Stop it, please, I begged him. I never agreed to let you use my body for this.
“Did you really think all I was going to do was taste your food and sniff your deodorant?” he asked. “This is part of the deal and you better get used to the idea. Now just relax and enjoy the ride, and don’t pretend like you’ve never done this before.”
It’s different when I do it, I responded, my thought-voice small and defeated. What had I done? I was at the mercy of a being of pure evil, trapped inside my own body until God only knew when. What if he never gave it back? Was this his plan all along?
“Your fussing in there is very distracting,” Azir said. “I told you to relax. When I’m done, you can have your body back, don’t worry. And by the way, that whole mental push-thing you did, that would have kicked a lesser demon clear to the curb. I just happen to be strong enough to resist. Not strong enough to come in uninvited, but once I’m in...Oh, fuck, that feels so good.” He began to stroke my cock faster, the slick sound of skin on skin filling the small space.
I wanted to tune this out, but I had forgotten to ask how to do that, either. Besides, I wasn’t sure I wanted to leave him alone with my body. I could feel the pleasure gathering in my groin, hot and heavy, my breath coming faster as he neared climax. At least it would be over soon.
Azir gasped, grunting as my muscles tightened, my balls drawing up as I dumped my load. He staggered, reaching out to steady himself against the wall.
“Wow, I had no idea,” he panted. He rinsed the cum from my skin, then shut off the water. Stepping out onto the bath mat, he grabbed a towel off the shelf in the corner and began to dry my body.
Satisfied now? I asked. Can I have my body back?
“I said when I’m done,” Azir replied, dropping the damp towel on the floor with my discarded clothes. He walked into the bedroom stark naked, the air raising goosebumps on my wet skin. “I don’t suppose you have any toys in here?”
Absolutely not! I said, but if I’d had control of my body, my gaze would have darted to the nightstand beside the bed. I guess Azir could feel it, because he made a beeline for the little drawer. That’s not mine, I said as he pulled out the drawer.
He chuckled as he picked up the slender, bright blue, cock-shaped vibrator. “I suppose the previous tenant left this behind and you just couldn’t throw it out in case they came back for it. Look, how thoughtful. They left some lube behind, too.”
My girlfriend bought those, I said.
“Aww, were you really that bad in bed, that she needed battery-operated assistance?”
No, she wanted to use it on me, I snapped. I said no and she wouldn’t stop pestering me about it. We had a fight and I called her a twisted pervert and she left. That was six months ago. Okay, maybe I had over-reacted to her request, but she was just too aggressive. I had never even thought about doing something like that, and I needed time to get used to the idea. Would I have come around eventually? I don’t know. I kept the stuff, didn’t I? Even though I never touched it after she called me a prude and walked out.
“Boy, oh boy, my night just keeps getting better,” Azir said, grabbing the bottle of lubricant and flopping down across my bed. He stretched and writhed, rubbing my bare skin against the cool, soft comforter. “I don’t know which I like more, your sense of taste, or your sense of touch. There’s something so sensual about all this tactile stimulation.”
I hadn’t really thought about what he’d told me before, about how a demon’s senses were muted or absent, but his obvious enjoyment of something as simple as rubbing against a blanket made me consider what an empty existence it must be. No scent, no flavor, no pleasure. Considering that, I could hardly blame him for masturbating a little. Or a lot, for that matter. He could have been doing things a whole lot worse.
Go ahead, I thought with a sigh. I won’t pretend to like it, but I also won’t complain.
“Really?” Azir said, going still as he raised my head.
Yeah, just...just don’t hurt me, okay? As soon as I thought the words, I wished I could take it back. Admitting my weakness and fear to a demon was probably the dumbest thing I could have done in that situation. But again, Azir surprised me.
“I won’t, I promise,” he said, and I was again left to wonder if demons were capable of lying. He sat up, leaning back against my padded headboard, my knees bent and legs spread. That alone would have been enough to make me blush. I wasn’t a prude, but I was certainly more modest than that.
The crinkle of plastic filled the silent bedroom as Azir removed the seal from the bottle of lubricant. I watched nervously as he drizzled the thick, clear gel onto my fingers. He reached down between my legs and began to smear the gel between my cheeks, a low, guttural groan escaping him as he rubbed a small circle around my opening. I will admit, it felt better than I had expected.
Azir took his time preparing me, though I didn’t know if that was for his benefit, or mine. I supposed it didn’t matter. He added more lube to his fingers and slipped two of them inside of me, spreading the gel and stretching that tight ring of muscle. That felt good, too, although I did my best to hide that fact from him.
Finally, he slathered the blue silicone surface of the vibrator with lube until it was slick and shiny, stroking it like a real cock as the fat, rubber balls at the base jiggled. My own cock was hard again, but Azir ignored it, reaching down behind my balls instead and guiding the tip of the vibrator to my opening.
“Oh, yes,” he moaned, heels digging into the bed as he pushed back against the headboard. “Oh, fuck, yes.” I couldn’t believe how easily that rubber cock slid into my asshole, my muscles gripping, pulling it deeper. It was a strange feeling, but nothing like I had expected. Azir eased it in about halfway before stopping to let us catch our breath.
That’s deep enough, right? I asked. He didn’t answer. Right?
“Tell me, Eddie,” he said, breathless, “if you had just one night to live, would you only go halfway?” I had no answer for him. I suppose after experiencing the full range of human senses, the thought of returning to his demonic existence must have been like facing death. Was I crazy, feeling pity for a damned demon?
After giving my body a minute to relax and adjust, Azir slid the vibrator in to the hilt, the soft, silicone balls squishing against my ass. I felt full in a way I had never imagined, that rubber cock snug inside of me, but I honestly didn’t see the appeal. Not until Azir turned on the vibrator.
He gasped, my body arching, as the cock began to buzz inside of us. “Oh, shit...Oh, fuck...” he panted, rocking my hips until he found just the right angle. The vibrator pressed against my prostate and I saw stars, my cock jerking as it grew rock hard. I had never felt anything so wonderful, so intensely pleasurable, the vibrations filling me with a deep, aching need to cum. If it had been me, I would have immediately jerked off, but Azir had other ideas.
Reaching up above my head, he grabbed onto the headboard, breath hissing between my teeth as he pressed down into the bed to keep the vibrator in place deep inside of me. My cock quivered, beads of precum leaking from the tip, tickling my sensitive flesh it trickled down the head, and I suddenly realized just how helpless I had let myself become. I couldn’t even stroke my own cock. I was completely at the mercy of this horny demon...and I had never felt more alive.
Oh, Azir, please… I begged, the pleasure nearly unbearable as my neglected cock throbbed with need. Just a single stoke would have finished me, but he dug my fingers into the headboard until my hands ached, my room echoing with his breathless cries.
“Almost...almost there...Come on...” he panted, my whole body shaking. I wanted to cum so bad I even tried shoving him out of me again. It didn’t do anything, except make him laugh. “Nice try. You almost got me with that one. Just hang on a little more. Oh...Oh, fuck, yes!”
I cried out with him as the climax thundered through us, my muscles contracting, drawing the vibrator deeper as my balls drew up. My cock jerked like a puppet on a string as we striped my comforter with long, satisfying strands of cum. I can honestly say it was the best orgasm of my life, up to that point. When it was finally over, the vibrations against my prostate became truly unbearable, even for him, and he quickly turned it off and gently slid it out.
Exhausted and trembling, he slouched against the headboard, my chest rising and falling as he caught his breath.
“Well, that wasn’t so bad, was it?” he asked after a minute. I didn’t respond. I wasn’t sure how. He sighed. “All right, just like I promised, you can have your body back now.” I thought that might be an invitation to help him along, but before I could even try, I felt that dizziness again. I reached up and touched my head, then jerked my hand back and stared at it. I wiggled my fingers, relieved when they moved at my command.
Azir chuckled and I glanced beside me, where he lay stretched out on my bed, dressed in his jeans and T-shirt. I was still stark naked, of course, and I felt the heat rush to my face. Trying to salvage some scrap of my dignity, I got up and walked to the dresser, grabbing a clean pair of boxers to put on, but I could feel the lube between my cheeks. I needed a shower. Maybe several showers.
“Well?” Azir asked as I headed for the bathroom. “As much as I’ve enjoyed our time together, I do need an answer. Which will it be, your body or your soul?”
I busied myself with picking up the discarded clothes from the floor while I tried to come up with a third option, but there wasn’t one. I was well and truly fucked. I heard a noise and glanced up to find Azir standing in the bathroom doorway, watching me, a smug, sort of wistful smile on his face.
“What?” I demanded.
“I was just thinking,” he said, giving his head a slow shake. “I’m almost six thousand years old, and I can honestly say that this was the best night of my existence. Thank you, Eddie.”
“You’re welcome, I guess,” I grumbled grudgingly, but in a strange way, that was gratifying to hear. Maybe this wouldn’t be as bad as I was imagining. “Do you promise that they won’t hurt me, or use me to hurt anyone else?”
“You have my word,” Azir said.
“And no more than one demon a day? I have a life, you know.”
“I’m sure you do,” he said with a slight smirk, as if he didn’t believe me. “Don’t worry, we can work around your busy schedule. Any other concerns?”
“Not that I can think of.”
“Then do we have a deal?” There was a sick, hollow feeling in the pit of my stomach as Azir held out his hand to me. This was such a bad idea, but I couldn’t lose my soul. Of the two, this was the better option. I hoped.
“Yeah, it’s a deal,” I said, shaking his hand. A rumble like thunder filled the room, accompanied by a flash of darkness, like the light suddenly dimmed, and I felt a sharp, hot pain in the palm of my hand. I jerked away from Azir as the smell of sulfur tainted the air. “What did you do?”
“It’s just a demon’s mark,” he said with a careless wave of his hand.
I looked down at my palm, my heart nearly stopping at the sight of a glowing pentagram flickering like a live coal beneath my skin. “This wasn’t part of the deal! How am I going to explain this?”
“Relax, would you?” Azir said. “Regular humans won’t be able to see it. It’s only detectable to demons and those touched by the dark arts.”
“That doesn’t make me feel better,” I said, scowling at him. “What’s it for?”
“It’s proof of my claim on you,” Azir said, holding up a hand to forestall my next outraged protest, “and before you blow a gasket, it’s temporary. As soon as you pay your debt, it will disappear. But until then, it will serve as a warning to others that you belong to me.”
“I do not belong to you,” I said, my voice low. Azir just smiled, a flash of teeth that was both charming and sinister. Before I could say anything else, a column of fire surged up from the floor, engulfing Azir. It only lasted a moment, and when it disappeared, so did he.
Alone, I was suddenly hit by the magnitude of what I had done. I made a deal with a demon! I was damned, my soul destined for Hell unless I managed to earn it back, but doing so would probably corrupt me beyond redemption, anyway. I was completely fucked.
“Oh, God,” I whispered, closing my eyes, “what have I done?”
“Is that a rhetorical question, or do you really want to know?” The voice was soft and smooth, neither masculine nor feminine, and I looked up to find a person of indeterminate gender standing in the doorway. They had glossy black hair that fell in loose curls to their collar and pale blue eyes that were almost colorless. They wore long, flowing white robes under shiny silver and gold chain mail, with Roman-looking sandals on their feet. However, it was the iridescent glow and the giant white wings behind their back that nearly made my heart stop.
The angel gave me a reproachful look. “You are in a world of trouble, Edward.”