THE VIRGIN PRIEST 15 & 16

Feature Writer: AdAnne

Feature Title: THE VIRGIN PRIEST 15 & 16

Published: 07.04.2022

Story Codes: Demonic

Synopsis: Luke and Asmodeus get an assignment

The Virgin Priest 15 & 16

CHAPTER 15

When they returned to the room, Luke settled into the bed next to Asmodeus. Asme, rather. His lover pulled Luke against his firm body, and they settled with content. Asme stroked his arm gently. The demon threw his leg over the top of Luke’s. It all felt natural, much to Luke’s surprise. It felt like he was made to be in this man’s arms.

“Where are your wings, As?” Luke asked. He made it a point to use As. The demon grumbled.

“You’re about to lose the privilege of calling me Asme,” Asmodeus grazed his cheek over the top of Luke’s head, “I will make you call me Deus if you keep going.”

“I will never call you Deus, demon. In the short time I’ve known you, you have given my life more meaning and joy than God ever did. You are not a duty I was forced into you. I chose you.”

Luke felt Asme relax behind him. The demon squeezed him a little tighter. Luke swore he could hear his Prince choking up a little behind him, but he wouldn’t dare point it out.

“You have no idea how much it means to me to hear you say that, Luke.”

Luke felt the gentle touch of Asme’s wings then. He reached forward and stroked them softly. Asme shivered behind him.

“Where were they?” Luke asked as he ran the feathers through his fingers.

“It hurts to lay on them. I just put them away.”

Luke paused before he asked his next question, “How come the tales of this place always say how awful it is?”

“Because your God is a jealous god. We may be ruthless, but it is because our only rule down here is order. We let our subjects do as they please; we only ask that it stays civil. Our punishments are brutal, but we don’t torture…often.”

“But why lie? What purpose does that serve?”

“To make his kingdom more appealing, I suppose. I never understood it. Life up there is akin to the hell they describe this place to be. All the rigid rules and conformity. I much prefer my life here.”

“You used to live there?”

Asme chuckled, “Yes. My brothers and I, we are the fallen. Me, Samael, and Beelzebub, we are the leaders of this place. The people named Samael king. I lived with that peacefully until Shynra was named his heir.”

Luke sighed heavily, “Do all demons have wings? I’ve seen yours and Lily’s are on my back. But I didn’t see Samael’s.”

Asme shook his head, “No. Only royals and Lilith’s line do.”

“So they’re a status symbol then?”

“Yes, except for Lilith’s line. The royals can hide their wings, and they are usually their territory color. Mine are red, Beelzebub’s are green. Lilith’s line is predatory. Their wings are distinctive, like Shynra’s, they can’t be hidden.”

“If she is royal, why aren’t her wings like her father’s?”

Asme growled low, it made Luke jump, “My brother and Lilith had Shynra before their bond was complete. You humans would call that wedlock. She has Samael’s royal blood, which is how she stakes her claim, but she is not legitimate. She is a bastard, and her claim should mean nothing. The gold and silver of her wings proves that.”

Luke reached up and grabbed Asme’s hand, “I’m sorry, Asme. I’m the one that has given her claim merit.”

“Don’t apologize. Priest, you are the best thing that has happened to me in a millennium. Don’t ever apologize for finding me.”

Luke laughed a loud and boisterous laugh, “Find you? I’d say that you found me, Asme. I never would have sought you out on my own.”

The demon leaned forward and kissed him on the cheek. Luke smiled.

“I know, Luke. I’m glad you opened yourself to me, though. I would be terribly empty without you.”

Luke turned around to face him. He didn’t understand why Asme was being so vulnerable. For the duration of his life, Luke had been taught to hide his emotions. The demon was so forthcoming. Luke reached out and captured the demon’s face in his hands. Asme nuzzled into his grip.

“I wish I could be as open with you as you are with me, Asme.”

Luke brought his lips to Asme’s and kissed him with fervor. This was the only way he knew how to convey his feelings without words. He was truly in love with the man in his arms. He shuffled in the bed and pushed Asme onto his back. The demon obliged until Luke crawled on top of him. Luke didn’t notice the shift in Asme’s demeanor until the demon started hyperventilating.

Luke broke their kiss and looked into the demon’s eyes, which were now clouded in terror. He was shaking beneath Luke, and Luke had no idea what to do. The demon’s sandy blonde hair had fallen into his face again. Luke brushed it back and dragged his finger’s down Asme’s face. It didn’t seem to help.

“Asmodeus, what’s wrong?”

Luke reached down and tried to shake him. He didn’t get the chance to. Asmodeus shot out of the bed and knocked Luke flat on his back. He retreated to a far corner of the room. Luke looked at him, knowing that the demon wouldn’t actually harm him, and focused on the fear coming from Asmodeus. Luke imagined this is what he had looked like earlier in the night.

Luke stepped off the bed and took a tentative step toward Asme. The demon stepped back and flared his wings out in warning. The red tips looked every bit the warning they should be. Luke stopped. Asme was shaking, his arms crossed in front of his body protectively.

“Asme, please talk to me, are you okay?”

The demon nodded a little too quickly, “Yes. I’ll be fine.”

“You’re shaking,” Luke walked towards him again. His wings were no longer flared out. He tensed when Luke grabbed his arm. Luke stroked him softly.

Asme let out a long, ragged breath, “I’m okay. I promise. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you. It’s just… No one has ever tried to do that. Not since…”

“You startled me. But you’re the one hiding in the corner. I’m more worried about you.”

Asmodeus dropped his head. He was clearly scared, and now he was embarrassed. He withdrew his wings completely. Luke took the opportunity to bring him into an embrace. Asme shook his head quickly, but Luke ignored him.

“Asme, I don’t know much about relationships, but you comforted me when I was scared. Let me do the same for you.”

He tightened his grip around the demon as he spoke. Asmodeus stayed stiff. Luke stroked his back softly to try to ease his pain.

“I’m supposed to be here for you. Not the other way around,” Asmodeus said as he relaxed into Luke, “I’m sorry. I don’t know what happened. I felt… I felt trapped.”

“It’s okay. We won’t do that again. But I would never trap you, even if I was strong enough to.” Luke sighed with relief when Asme laid his head against Luke’s shoulder. The demon returned his embrace. The fear coursing through the bond started to recede.

“No. I liked it. I liked it until a memory came into my head. I wasn’t always immortal, per se. My father, he would try to suffocate me as a child. I could fight him, but the weight of his body on mine? It reminded me of that. And then there was the water…”

“Asme…” Luke started. What did he say to that? “I would never try to harm you.”

“I know. But our bond puts a chip in my immortal life. I’m not afraid of you, but by the shred of immortality that I lost. Even as a creature of death, my own death scares me.”

Luke nodded, “I get that, but it’s my new eternal lifespan that scares me.”

Asme stepped out of Luke’s arms and locked eyes with him. For some reason, maybe for Luke’s own benefit, he had changed his eyes from their usual swirling black to a human shade of green.

“I will do everything to make sure you have the happiest eternal life anyone can have. I will never leave you.”

Luke smiled. He knew that, but hearing it made him happy.

“I know you won’t. You haven’t yet, not even when she tried to dismember you not too long ago. I will do the same for you.”

Asme smiled back, the exhaustion in his eyes was evident, “Priest, I’m entirely too exhausted to continue this tonight. Please come join me in bed. I want nothing more than to sleep with you next to me again.”

Luke agreed and followed Asme back to the bed. He found himself in the same position they started in- his back pressed against Asme’s body. It was a familiar and comfortable position. It wasn’t long before he drifted back to sleep.

Luke didn’t sleep for long. He could sense Asme’s apprehension. The demon was shuddering against him, yet Luke was still tight in his embrace. Luke wiggled slightly, trying to turn to face Asme. It was a little difficult because the demon had his face pressed against the top of Luke’s head, buried in his hair. Asme moaned in protest as Luke turned in his arms.

Luke planted his hands on Asme’s chest as he settled into his new position. The demon’s eyes were still human green. Luke found himself missing the swirling black depths of his real eyes. Luke shivered as Asme traced a line up his spine.

“You’re trying to distract me,” he said softly.

“Perhaps. I don’t really feel like talking,” Asme closed his eyes as he spoke and sighed heavily.

“You can’t work through this if you don’t talk about it.”

“I don’t know what to talk about. I don’t know what happened. I liked what you were doing until I felt your weight on my chest. I got a memory, fuzzy, of being crushed in water. I don’t know where it came from, and I can’t shake it. I want to sleep it off, but I can’t sleep.”

Luke leaned forward and kissed him softly. Asme gripped his hip a little tighter.

“You don’t need to be scared here,” Luke said. He reached around Asme’s body to find his wings, but the demon still had them put away, “Give me one, I want to try something.”

Asmodeus quirked his eyebrow, “You want a wing? What are you going to do with it?”

“Just give it to me. You’ll see.”

Asmodeus smiled and obliged him. The demon’s wing spread around them. Luke couldn’t help but stare at it in awe. The soft feathers brushed against the side of his face and fanned out across his body. He smiled back at Asme at the sight.

“I’ll never get used to seeing these,” Luke said as he reached out to run one of the feathers through his fingers.

“I’m sure in another millennium you will get sick of me,” Asmodeus joked. He sighed. Luke felt some of the tension leave him as he continued to stroke the demon’s wings.

“I will never get sick of you,” Luke replied.

The demon squeezed his hip and brought Luke closer. Luke reached behind Asme and continued what he was doing. Feeling the demon in his grasp made everything feel alright. Asme grunted his pleasure.

“You say that now,” he laughed, “But no one has ever… pet… me before.” He said as he leaned closer to Luke.

“In my world, we pet soft things,” Luke replied.

“I can see why,” Asmodeus moaned, “But no one would dare touch a Prince’s wings.”

Luke laughed, “Except me, it seems.”

Asmodeus nodded, “Well, you’ve had a death wish since I first set eyes on you, Priest.”

“Only for you,” Luke continued to pet Asme, “Though, I would call this stroking, not petting.”

“Priest, this is not stroking,” Asme reached between their bodies and captured Luke’s length in his hands. Luke gasped at the sudden and unexpected contact, “This is stroking. You are petting.”

“Naughty demon. Let me go,” Luke said without conviction. Asme did.

“Very well. I will stop stroking, but you can keep petting. I quite like it,” Asme laid a soft kiss on Luke’s forehead, “Thank you, Priest. I do feel better now.”

“Good, now try to sleep.”

“Who gave you permission to boss me around?” Asme asked, sleep heavy on his voice.

“I did,” Luke laughed. He moved his hand from Asme’s wing and placed it on the man’s shoulder, drawing him into his own body. “Sleep, Prince. I’m here with you.”

Asme relaxed completely against Luke’s body. He nodded lazily against Luke, and shortly after, fell asleep. Luke dragged his thumb across his demon’s face. It pleased him how at peace Asme looked yet confused him because Asme looked so harmless asleep. The Prince was a powerful predator. Here in Luke’s arms, however, he just looked like an ordinary man. Luke kissed Asme’s cheek softly and settled beside him. Joining him in sleep was not hard.

Lily had been feeding off Luke’s terror and uncertainty all night. It was her gift from her father. Her mother gave her the gift of feeding off sex, her father’s gift was feeding off fear. It was a gift she did not utilize often. It upset her when his fear all of a sudden turned into content and happiness. There was only one reason those feelings would have reemerged that night. And that reason was Asmodeus. Had the priest been stupid enough to summon the unwelcome demon back into her home? Surely not.

Lily had every intention of revoking his right to see her uncle. As long as he remained the key to her destiny, the human would do as she pleased. His confession to her earlier had turned the blood in her veins to ice. She had intended to give him everything he could desire, but this she couldn’t give.

In a huff, Lily marched out of her room. She knew where to find the priest. He was nothing if he wasn’t predictable. She walked through her family home with purpose only stopping when one of her father’s guard blocked her path.

“Move,” She commanded. To her chagrin, the Guard stayed put.

“No one is allowed in these chambers by order of the King,” he kept his gaze straight ahead as he spoke.

“Do you know who you are speaking to? Step aside.”

The Guard stood firm, “I’m sorry, your highness, but he is king. Take your grievance up with him.”

Fire lit in her eyes, “My mate is behind that door, you will allow me access or you will feel my displeasure.”

The Guard shifted uncomfortably, “The order still stands. No one can enter this room.”

A smile twisted across Lily’s lips as her power rose and filled the hallway. She watched as the Guard swallowed harshly, but he did not give up his position. Lily admired the demon’s dedication to her father, but he was in her way. She would not allow Luke happiness in her uncle’s arms.

“Shynra!” She flinched as her father’s voice carried through the hall, “While I’m glad you have found your power, your grandiose displays of it are beginning to tire me.”

The power that had been strumming in her veins fell flat at Samael’s disapproval. His presence behind her was a very obvious warning. She wasn’t quite sure that she cared.

“You have no right to keep me from him,” she sneered.

“You have been away from our realm and our politics for quite some time, so I will excuse your insolence,” Lily shook as her father’s power seeped into her. It was cool and authoritative. It didn’t take no for an answer, “But I am king and what I say is law. I will not have one of my subjects disrespect me so plainly. You are not Queen, daughter. You will do well to remember that.”

Lily’s knees were going weak with her father’s assault. She wanted to say something, but she was being forced into silence.

“Your priest is under my protection. Since you cannot control your jealousy, he will be kept under Guard in his new chambers where his true mate can come and go as needed Their bond is stronger than yours, daughter. You have no claim to him.”

Her father’s power receded enough for her to speak, “He bares my mark. He is my future king. I have the ultimate claim to him.”

Samael laughed and shook his head, “Child, he marked Asmodeus. My brother carries his mark in the marriage way. He and Asmodeus are one. He may be your king, but he rules rightfully with my brother now. Your bond is not stronger than that. Your priest made his choice. You were not it. I cannot keep them apart and risk a war that I cannot win.”

“Asmodeus would never go to war over a human,” Lily scoffed, “Luke’s life is inconsequential to him and we both know it.”

Samael sighed, “He almost started a war earlier tonight, daughter, because of you and whatever you did to anger the boy.”

Lily shook her head, “I will not let this happen. I do not want him here.”

Samael’s power flared once again, rendering her speechless, “That is not your decision to make. It is mine and will remain mine. The priest is no longer your concern, Shynra. Let it go. I will only warn you once. If you interfere, I will let my brother take him for his safety.”

“I would never harm him,” Lily said.

“Not physically, but you have already shown that you are quite capable of emotionally torturing him. He is a human, Shynra, you will break his mind and he will be of no use to us. Leave him be or I will shackle and detain you as I did my brother.”

“You wouldn’t dare,” she sneered. Her body was still locked in place, but her anger was mingling with her father’s show of dominance.

Samael shrugged his indifference and turned to face his Guard, “Shackle her. Take her to the dungeons. Don’t bother with VIP treatment, it seems my dearest daughter has forgotten her place.”

Lily’s anger only intensified as the Guard followed Samael’s orders. She attempted to fight them off, but the moment they snapped the cuffs around her wrists, her power vanished. She stared at her father in astonishment.

“You are really going to do this?” She asked.

“May this remind you of your time before the priest brought you into your power. He is your key to this kingdom. Until you can control yourself when it comes to him, you will not see him.”

Lily did not get a chance to respond before the guard hauled her off. She did feel powerless, but more than that, she felt humiliated. Her father had her detained for trying to reclaim what was hers? She was thrown to the ground of the cell with little regard to her wellbeing. She was confident this wouldn’t be the end of this discussion. Asmodeus would not win this fight. He would not win her birthright, her throne, her mate. Her resolve at that moment was unwavering. She just needed to prove to her father that she wasn’t a threat to her human.

Asmodeus woke abruptly when he felt his brother’s power rush over the room. Instinctively, he tightened his grip on Luke. Asmodeus was laying on his back now. Luke was next to him, his head positioned over his heart. As threatening as Samael’s power felt, Asmodeus knew it wasn’t directed towards them. Nevertheless, he kept his Priest as close to him as he could. He had never felt the urge to protect someone like this. The thought of something happening to his lover made his stomach knot. No, Luke would stay safe.

Thankfully, Luke didn’t notice the shift in atmosphere. This made Asme grateful of his human nature. Samael rarely showed his power. He was a fair and even headed ruler. Whatever threat was nearby, Asmodeus didn’t want to face it himself. What he wanted was to stay in this bed as he was.

The power did not recede for a while. Asmodeus was on edge as he waited to see if Samael would explain. He didn’t know what daft underdemon would challenge Samael, the embodiment of Wrath. The demons spoke of Asmodeus’s torture techniques. Very few demons survived Samael’s punishments. A few moments later, his brother came through the door to their chambers. Asmodeus did not relax his grip on Luke, he kept the man close. There was no guarantee that Samael wouldn’t take him. That wouldn’t happen without a fight.

“I know you’re awake, brother,” Samael said softly. He seemed to be respecting Luke’s sleep.

“What stupid underling tried to cross you?” Asmodeus replied.

Samael’s sigh resonated through the room. For some reason, the sound chilled Asmodeus.

“It wasn’t an underling. It was Shynra.”

“Shynra? What was she doing over here at this time of night, brother?” Asmodeus stroked Luke’s shoulder absently as he spoke. Shynra venturing over here unsettled him.

“She discovered your presence here. As I expected, her jealousy is getting the better of her. She is taken care of.”

Asmodeus looked down at Luke’s sleeping form. He knew his niece would never do anything to physically hurt the man in his arms. After last night, he knew that she would make him miserable emotionally. She would break him and his tender spirit. The thought made him sick. His Priest was just starting to get a fire in him. Asmodeus’s anger rose inside him. He tried to stop it from flaring out, but that was futile.

“If that bastard bitch lays a finger on him,” Asmodeus growled, “I will end your line brother. That is my promise to you.”

Samael was silent for a beat, “It is touching to see you care for someone so deeply. I will ignore your threat, because that is how I know my decision is a good one.”

“What decision?” Asmodeus startled as Luke jumped in his arms. He realized that he had been holding the man too tight. He released his grip and Luke settled back against him without waking up.

“That man, that human man,” Samael pointed to Luke as he spoke, “Is the key to our reign, Asmodeus. We have to keep him, mind and body, free from threat. Right now my jealous daughter is a threat. Take him from here. Don’t tell me where. Take him and keep him safe. Just don’t take him to your territory, she will look there.”

Shock resonated through Asmodeus at his brother’s command, “Samael, if I can’t take him to our home, where will I take him?”

“I do not care where you take him, brother. Just get him out of here. She will cause him nothing but misery because of his affection for you. Get him out. Don’t get caught. Remember your claim to him is stronger than hers. I know she cannot kill you, but I can’t save you from her wrath if she finds you. Go far, go wide. I do not care. Get him and go.”

“Why the change of heart?” Asmodeus was still in shock.

“The way you’re holding him now, the way you helped him earlier. Shynra is her mother’s daughter. She is using him for personal gain that she mistakes for love. You are not. You care about his best interests and tread the fine line of treason looking out for them. Keep him safe and hidden. I trust you to do this brother. You will know when it is safe to return.”

Asmodeus did not get a chance to respond. Samael left just as abruptly as he entered. Being trusted with the fragile life in his hands gave him both warmth and unease. Taking care of an immortal demon was one thing. They were almost impossible to kill. Keeping a vulnerable human with an eternal lifespan safe? That made him nervous, especially when the mortal in question wore a piece of him on his chest.

He didn’t want to wake Luke. However, Samael’s commands had never carried such urgency. The priest could sleep when he was safe. Asmodeus would risk his life for the mortal, but he was at a disadvantage in Samael’s home. No one here was loyal to him. If he had to fight his niece, he would lose. Her connection to Luke meant she couldn’t die without killing him, and he couldn’t take her prisoner in her own home. Not without his own men.

With a deep sigh, Asmodeus shook Luke out of his sleep. The Priest’s big brown eyes were heavy with sleep and full of confusion. Asmodeus smiled at him and cupped his face. Luke smiled in response and leaned into his touch.

“Why are you awake so early, Asme? Is something wrong?”

Asmodeus greeted him with a light kiss, “No, nothing is wrong, Luke.”

“That was a nice way to wake up. But if there’s nothing wrong, why do you look so troubled?”

“I’m not troubled, I’m confused,” Asmodeus said, “But you need to wake. We have to leave here.”

“Leave? Won’t they hunt you down if you leave with me?”

Asmodeus shook his head, “No. It is by decree of our fair king. I can fill you in later, but we have to go.”

“We can’t just walk out, can we?”

Asmodeus laughed, “You are betrothed to a royal demon, Priest. We will leave the same way we got here.”

“Wait. We’re going back to my world?” Worry seeped into Luke’s words, “Can’t we just go back to your place?”

“No. We will come back, don’t worry. My kingdom is your kingdom, it will always be your home.”

Asmodeus stood from the bed and beckoned for Luke to join him. The priest was slow, but he did take his place beside Asmodeus.

“Don’t be scared, love. We will be okay,” Asmodeus said as he wrapped his arms around the priest, “Just relax and we will be back in your world before you know it.”

CHAPTER 16

Even through the chains, she should have felt the essence of her Priest. However, it was gone. Rage coursed through her. Lily had never known emotion quite like this, and she wasn’t sure how to process it. The last time she had felt this empty was when Asmodeus kidnapped Luke into this realm. There was no way that her father would have allowed her uncle to travel that far with the Priest, was there?

There was no way for her to find out. Her father had left her in the floor of this cell for what felt like days. She was sure it had probably only been a few hours. Surely Samael wouldn’t keep his heir locked in captivity. She meant no harm to Luke. The chains Samael placed her in weren’t like the ones that had detained her uncle. For one, they were more like cuffs. There were no actual chains. Just a cuff over each wrist to ensure that she didn’t have access to her magic. Maybe that was a ploy to keep her from tracking Luke?

Lily cried out in frustration. Even the Guard was ignoring her pleas to be released from her dank prison. Her father had made sure that she knew her place. But even then, shouldn’t his heir be treated with more civility? Surely she had more power than this, more sway.

“I want my father, you imbeciles,” she shouted towards the door.

Lily paced back and forth. Not even her mother had tried to come visit her in here. Not that she blamed her at all. This place wasn’t suited even for her uncle. Samael had made sure to clear the room of any type of entertainment. There wasn’t even anything for her to throw around in the cell. She had no way to manifest her anger other than to scream. Lily turned to face the cell door when she heard the knob rattle. It seemed like an eternity before the imposing form of her father walked through the doorway.

“We will be fine, station yourselves outside the door,” he commanded. Lily turned to face him.

“What did you hope to achieve by doing this?” Lily demanded.

“I do not need to explain myself to you, daughter,” Samael said calmly. He didn’t move from the entry of the room.

“You gave him to Asmodeus, didn’t you? I can’t feel him anymore,” Lily asked quietly.

Samael nodded, “I gave him to Asmodeus, yes. But he wasn’t mine to give. He belongs to Asmodeus. I have no claim on the boy.”

The rage boiled up in Lily once again, “I have a claim to him, father. He is mine; he was not yours to give away.”

“That is where you’re wrong, Shynra. By demon custom, Luke and Asmodeus are married. They have claim to each other. You don’t have any hold on him other than your dual claim to the throne. My throne, I might add. You do not yet rule this realm.”

“Where did they go?”

Samael shrugged, “Wherever they please, I suppose. I did not ask.”

“Is that because you know I would hunt him to the end of the realms, father? I will find him. I will execute Asmodeus for treason for this.”

Samael sighed and let his power rise in the room, “You will do no such thing, daughter, because you hold no power here. You are an heir, not a ruler. You would do well to know the distinction. Asmodeus is also an heir, but he governs over his own territory along with your Priest. They both hold more power than you. You do not have the authority to execute a governing Prince for treason. He has not committed treason. You will stay locked, powerless, in this cell until you know your place.”

“You wouldn’t dare,” Lily said, her gaze narrowed.

“I don’t have to dare, daughter. I just did it. The difference between real power, such as mine, and fake power, which is what you think you possess, is that my power is respected. Yours is tolerated with little regard. I have loyalty, you do not. I suppose it’s my fault for not raising you properly, though. We will fix that now.”

“Get out,” Lily spat, “Leave me be. I will find my Priest and we will take your throne. I will have the power you say I lack.”

Samael laughed, “Good luck with that, daughter. The realm is on your Priest’s side. He has softened my brother. Sit and think about your actions, and I will let you go.”

Lily growled low in her throat as Samael left the cell. She meant what she said. She would take what was hers in every sense of the word. Her Priest, her throne, her power. She would chase it until she was no longer able.

Luke looked around his new scenery in awe. They were at a seaside estate, but it was very much in his own realm. The smell of salt water assaulted his nose, but the breeze was delightful. His Prince was collapsed across his lap, seemingly tired from their travel. Luke dragged his fingers through the demon’s hair and down the side of his face. He was sleeping soundly.

This was a moment that Luke could get used to. He felt nothing but peace here, even with Asme asleep. The demon would never allow anything to happen to him.

“Will it stay this way, Asme?” he asked quietly. The demon grunted in response. Luke smiled softly. He could get used to this.

Author’s note: Thank you everyone for going on this journey with me! I know there have been twists and turns, and I fully plan on expanding this story! No worries, I know I’ve left Shynra’s story open, but she will have her closure in due time. She’s still fierce, and she deserves happiness of her own.

THE END