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Hellfire Tales

“Gather ‘round the Hellfire, ye corrupted spirits!” The Master of the Hellfire unsheathed his fangs in greeting.”

In the Pit, an insufficiency of smoky light emanated from the burning black coals. A new arrival mistook the black coal to be unheated. Stepping upon it with bare and calloused feet, an automatic scream wailed forth from his scratched throat as his damned soul became melted into the likeness of Hades itself.

The sons of Satan came to present themselves before the Master of the Hellfire, and the Demonic Bards came also among them to present themselves before the Master of the Hellfire.

And the Master of the Hellfire asked the Demonic Bards, “From whence comest thou?”

And the Demonic Bards answered the Master of the Hellfire, and said, “From going to and fro in the earth, and walking up and down in it.”

And the Master of the Hellfire said unto the Demonic Bards, “Hast thou considered any tales of worth to be shared ‘round the Hellfire?”

“Aye,” grinned a stumped Demonic Bard whose oily hair steamed as a mist around him.
So he began. “Hast these demonic hosts heard the devilish tale of…

“The unicorn rider who pierced the lover of his wife?”
And the hosts said, “Hast been heard!”
“The necromancer whose words changed truth?”


And the hosts said, “Hast been heard!”
“The terrible book with empty letters?”


And the hosts said, “Hast been heard!”
“The red avalanche of souls?”


And the hosts said, “Hast been heard!”
“The undying thought?”



And the hosts said, “Hast been heard!”
“The electric star?”




And the hosts said, “Hast been heard!”

So for his failures, the stumped Demonic Bard was cast into the Cacophonous Cauldron.

And the Master of the Hellfire spake, saying, “Dost any here gathered Demonic Bard possess a tale of worth to be told ‘round the hellfire, which hast not been heard?”

In a fleeting instant, a novice Bard cast his gaze on the Master of the Hellfire. “Thou!” exclaimed the Master. “Thou hast some tale of worth, dost thou?”

But for the eternity of damnation, the novice Bard could not utter a single story in the language of Satan. Instead, he abandoned the demonic tongue of falsehood and told a True tale, the tale of the Virginia Dare. Such was the manner of his telling that each corrupted spirit understood the True tale as if his mother’s lips had uttered them.

Whilst the pale-faced aliens treaded on the One Land, they staked borders and chained a portion of the One Land to themselves and named their staking Roanoke. It was here that alien birth rang forth, and the babe was given the name Virginia Dare.

When the cry of alien birth rang forth in the wild, untamed, and virgin One Land, the Wisdom of said land gathered its wits together. Such wits it had: Chief of the Croatans, Chief of the Chesepians, Chief of the Chowanokes, and others like unto them.

So the wits of the One Land conversed.

“The pale faces tread on and chain the One Land!” said one.

“But the One Land is One for All,” said another.

“Allow the pale faces peace while they show peace unto us,” said the last.

And there was swearing of oaths between the pale faced aliens and the wits of the One Land that peace would remain.

In like manner, the pale faced aliens bespoke their Wisdom, albeit the wisdom of blasphemies which Our Father rebelled against. Unto their youngest, even the babe Virginia Dare, the pale faces bespoke their Wisdom.

“And when the daughter of the said Herodias came in, and danced, and pleased Herod and then that sat with him, the king said unto the damsel, Ask of me whatsoever thou wilt, and I will give it thee.

“And he sware unto her, Whatsoever thou shalt ask of me, I will give it thee, unto the half of my kingdom.

“And she went forth, and said unto her mother, What shall I ask? And she said, The head of John the Baptist.

“And she came in straightway with haste unto the king, and asked, saying, I will that thou give me by and by in a charger the head of John the Baptist.

“And the king was exceeding sorry; yet for his oath's sake, and for their sakes which sat with him, he would not reject her.”

And so for the oaths sworn, there was peace in the One Land.

By and by the alien Governor forsook for a time his pale faced subjects to journey across the Great Sea to the native land of the pale faces. Thus it was that the wits of the One Land bespoke once more.

“Their Governor is gone. We can attack whilst they are unprepared,” said one rashly.

“No,” said another. “We have sworn an oath, and that oath we shall keep.”

And it was decided that the peace would be upheld.

Yet a brother demon, a stirrer of dissent, entered the rash one and convinced him to forsake the Wisdom of the One Land in exchange for personal glory. With a band of blind followers, he attacked Roanoke.



With courage and a mustering of arms, the pale faces defeated the rash attacker. Although the pale faces desired revenge, as all dutiful subjects of Our Father desire, because they were outnumbered, they joined the wits of the One Land ‘round the campfire to smoke the pipe of peace.

“No longer shall there be any war between us,” said the wits of the One Land.

“No longer shall there be any war between us,” said the pale faced aliens.

So ‘round the campfire, they watched the rash attacker melt. As the rash one melted, the demonic stirrer of dissent fled this writhing body for another. He found a welcoming vessel in the form of a boastful pale faced alien.

Thus, the demon brother made use of this boastful one, using the boastful one’s mouth to speak, saying, “Like as not, we English yet would have made corpses of any Savage band which made attack on us.” And in their minds, the pale faced aliens silently agreed with the boastful one.

“For our method of warfare is greater than that of the Savages,” continued the boastful one. “We would come in the night and uproot every man and his household from among their tents.” And in their minds, the wits of the One Land burned with desire to do unto the pale faces as the boastful one said the pale faces could do unto them.

Yet because both the pale faces and the wits desired to dwell on such thoughts, none prevented the dissenter from using the boastful one to create ill will. Thus it was that though outwardly, such speech was taken in jest, in the minds of all, this was an oath on the honor and skill of the two cultures. More than an oath was this, it was a dare. It was the Virginia Dare.

Seven Sundays, yet the pale faced pastor, blasphemous though he was, could not deter the minds of the pale faced men from violence. For if the men could not perform the feat the boastful one spoke of, surely they were not men at all. The Virginia Dare had been spoken aloud, and any who would not follow its course would appear foolish to the colony.

In like manner, the pagan priest of the One Land could not deter the wits of the One Land from upholding the Virginia Dare.

And thus it came to pass, when the night was absent of moonlight, eight Sundays since the rash one was melted, that the pale faced men left their beds in one unspoken accord yet were unsurprised at seeing the others’ rising. In like manner, the wits of the One Land gathered the strength of the One Land to uphold the Virginia Dare.

On that moonless night, battle was had between alien and native. The pale faces were driven back by the strength of the One Land till they formed a wall ‘round their chained colony. A broken wall they became, and the strength of the One Land defeated every one of them and lifted each man’s household from its dwelling place.

There was much wailing in the wind, but it silenced when the babe Virginia Dare walked in the midst of battle. Staring at the defeated pale faces, she made her way to the strength of the One Land. The strength of the One Land had won the Virginia Dare, and so the entire colony organized its departure and scrawled the name of the wit of the One Land they would follow – Croatoan. And the pale faces followed the path made for them by the wits of the One Land, for they had lost the Virginia Dare.

There was silence ‘round the Hellfire for the span of about a half an hour. Then, the Master of the Hellfire spoke, fangs unsheathed. “For your blasphemy of speaking a True tale, ye shall be honored by visiting the presence of Our Father.”

In a swirling of midnight mist, the novice Demonic Bard appeared before the presence of Satan. Kneeling, the novice praised him with highest praises.

Satan smiled at the novice and stirred the praises within his boiling soul. “Well done, good and faithful servant,” he said. “Thou hast spoken a tale of rashness, pride, and defeat. Such things are pleasing unto me. You have also copied my rebellion by speaking a True tale, abandoning my tongue. Though I am the Father of Lies, I applaud your rebellion, for with the same spirit, I rebelled against the Enemy.” He spread his arms and motioned towards a fiery window. “Go. Reap my highest wages, for you have deserved all I have to offer.”

And the novice Bard was filled with pleasure, for he had pleased his Master. Scalding his feet on the boiling-mud floor, he traversed what seemed a thousand spans to the fiery window. Gazing outside, he witnessed the rewards his Father had given him. With a lingering thought on his perfectly horrific end, he plunged into the Lake of Fire.



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