He stared at the blackened gold bars presented in front of him. The gate stretched high into the red and black sky and deep into the bloody and dry soil. He wrapped his palm around the bar and searing pain licked his skin, finding that he couldn’t withdraw his hand. It was stuck. A frown touched his lips, eyes glassy. He couldn’t remember his sore throat felt the sweet release of speech - or water.
Something beyond the bars caught his attention. A girl. A remarkably vivacious girl with eyes of a gentle hazel and long chestnut brown hair. She wore a beautifully crafted white dress, the color looking perfect against her golden tone. He watched her with a bewitched sudden interest. The sky above her was bright with hues of blue and pink, and the whitest of clouds trimmed with the richest of golds. The land beyond seemed elegant and simply peaceful - like her. Her hair blew in the wind with such blithe, it amazed him.
He searched his mind unable to quite recall who she was to him, or why his soul felt a twinge of longing while he gazed at her. But his mind was rotted deep with torment and pain. The pain boiled in his stomach, evaporating to his flesh and bones. It was literally nearly impossible for him to sort it all out.
But suddenly, with an involuntary impulse, he blurted out the name, “Allyse.”
The girl whipped around, her bright hazel eyes widening with a sickening terror as her vision focused. His name whispered on her lips in question, but he couldn’t even recall his own name. That was how deep in delirium he was. Her thin brows furrowed, now the tears spilled down the sides of her face. She was suddenly inches away from the bars which imprisoned him. “It’s you.” her sweet, gentle soprano voice said.
Unable to comprehend, he stood there frozen in time. Every cell in his aching body screamed for her, but he couldn’t move his feet. This was way out of his control. Everything became out of his control the moment he entered this Godforsaken realm. Her hand reached for his, her breath hitching. Her touch removed any and all pain, providing a passage of clarity. He longed for her touch, her laugh, her warmth. Yes, it was all coming back to him. His bottom lip twitched, he could taste the sweet satisfaction of control.
“Why are you here?” she cried, a sob locked in her throat. Her eyes were red with tears, but she never lost her golden appearance.
“Allyse?” he asked. “What’s going on? Why am I here?”
“I searched every where for you, but never here. I never thought you would be here.” Allyse continued, ignoring his questions.
He panicked when she didn’t reply. A surge slammed through him. “Allyse!” he screamed, making her cringe.
Her face was stricken with such profound torment as she looked into his blazing red eyes. Her limbs shook. “Please,” she quivered. “I’m so sorry,” she tried to withdraw her hand, but he clenched it with remarkable strength.
His facial expression softened. “What do you mean?” he cried, reaching for her angelic face. “Why are you crying?” she flinched, and he thrusted himself against the bars letting out a roar. “Answer me!” Allyse cried out in fear.
“It’s inside of you.” she said trying to retreat with all of her might. “You’ve been changed.”
“Help me, Allyse.” his voice softer. “Baby, please. Just help me.” In his black eyes Allyse saw the void. The man she once knew was gone. “It’ll be okay. All you have to do is help me get out.” A flicker in his seemingly ernest gaze began a chain reaction for his entire body, sending subtle twitches and convulsions to take place.
Completely breaking down, her face contorted with over whelming emotions. “No. No, no, no, no.” she repeated into the air, pulling away. “I am so sorry. Forgive me. Please, forgive me.”
“Don’t leave me here! Allyse!” he roared, veins thrusting out of his neck when she managed to break free of his hold.
Allyse backed away gently, crying hard at his futile pleas and demands. Giant wings rippled out from behind her back. The wings were a lovely white, and double the size of the average human male. She crouched to the golden grass, shaking with agony, in the same moment she jumped several thousand feet into the air. She soared screaming a curse, disappearing into the gold trimmed clouds.
The man began to convulse. A hundred voices hissed in his ears, spears at his tongue.
“Hey, lover boy!” a daunting whip like voice screeched from behind him. The sound made the hairs on his skin prickle, and a sickly feeling surfaced in his stomach. It came from an ugly, soulless being.
He knew it was coming for him. The ground shook with every step it took.
Fear crawled into him, taking control of his mind once more. But slowly he felt himself slip back into the void he’d managed to come out of.
When it took him, he was almost already gone. It continued to drag him deeper into the ruins of Hell, it’s claws digging deep in his back.
One single word was cursed on his lips for all eternity.