Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Work (07/27/06)
TITLE: The Beginning of the End
By Rachel Burkum
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The dark creature trembled at the roar. “A-a-p-pologies, Your Greatness.”
“What is it, Gossiper?”
“I bring you news.” A smile creased Gossiper’s face as he eagerly flexed his claws. “News of him, whose name we do not speak.”
“Oh?” The great body shifted in his granite throne, his yellow eyes flickering with curiosity. “Go on.”
Gossiper leaned in closer. “Crucifixion,” he whispered. “That’s what they’re predicting.”
“Ahh…” Lucifer stroked his black beard in thought, while stirring a stale breeze with his wings.
Gossiper looked at his master’s face expectantly. “Well aren’t we…I-I mean, will we…you know…get to him first?"
“Of course not!” Lucifer retorted. “Let him die on a cross! I want to see him suffer! I want to see the Creator turn his back on him for once.” He angrily spat at the floor, making the stones steam.
“Prophecy, smophecy. It will never work.” Lucifer lit a fire in his hand, illuminating the room with an eerie glow. He stood and hurled the flaming ball to the opposite end of the hall. Sparks flew in all directions until the wall burned a dull red. Gossiper’s jaw dropped as he stared at the lifelike mural that writhed with Lucifer’s own vast collection of souls.
“See that?” Lucifer asked. “That is what will make the Creator’s plan fail. He thinks he has it all under control, but this is what I have. Whatever I command, my followers obey. In no time they’ll overtake that pathetic earth and I’ll be the winner.” Lucifer sank down in his throne again, as the room returned to its original dark state. “Let him, whose name we do not speak, die. It shall be my pleasure to watch.”
Gossiper swallowed hard, hesitance shaking his hideous form. “But…”
Lightning flashed in Lucifer’s eyes. “But what?!”
“But…the prophecy says he will rise again. Shouldn’t we kill him off ourselves to make sure it’s done right?”
Lucifer laughed, sending tremors through his throne room. “He can raise others from the dead, but how can he raise himself? Even the Creator has limitations. Besides, those are my people controlling this chain of events, not the stupid prophecy. I don’t care what the prophecy says -the Creator’s plan won’t work. I’m the one in control. He, whose name we do not speak, is dying because of me, not because of any ridiculous plan. I called the shots on this one.”
Lucifer continued to sit on his throne throughout the night and the next day, gazing upon the earth. The sounds of nails piercing Christ’s flesh echoed through the darkness, and the demon breathed a contented sigh. More than two days later, the grave was still silent.
“It’s over!” Lucifer shouted gleefully. “I have won! The earth is mine! The Creator’s one and only is dead! I told you his plan wouldn’t work! I told you the prophecy was rubbish!” He quickly called his swarm of demons. “Come! Today we celebrate. Tomorrow we begin retrieving our plunder.”
Gossiper timidly looked out to see the earth as the party raged on behind him. Something was happening. A strange wind blew, signaling death - but not a human’s death. All at once, a flash of white light temporarily blinded Gossiper, and suddenly he saw the horror he knew to be true. Fear surged through his body. Unable to control himself, he collapsed onto the floor.
“Hey, Gossiper.” Deceit staggered over to the limp form. “Hey.” He kicked his fellow demon. “What’s with you?”
Gossiper could only manage a whisper. “He’s back. We shall all perish now.”
Deceit took a haphazard look out the window, but shrieked as he saw the truth. “No!”
“What’s going on?” Lucifer joined the other two, a strange sense of fear creeping into his veins.
Deceit pointed. “The Creator’s plan, my master…it has worked. He, whose name we do not speak, is walking again. And the people are following. The prophecy is being fulfilled.”
Lucifer threw himself onto the floor, pounding his fist into the stones. “No! It was my plan! His can’t work! It just can’t!” Rising in a burst of anger, Lucifer halted his celebration and summoned his army. “Fine,” he seethed. “If Jesus wants a battle, he’s got one.”
Gossiper looked up from the floor, still unable to move. “It’s no use,” he whispered. “Your plans will never work.”
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