~Halloween With ‘Lady E’~
Humming the cheery tune of a pop song, Ezraphel carefully applied special makeup to herself. This particular application was to emphasize a kind of aesthetic for her ‘costume’ for tonight. The story of how she found this particular costume was actually amusing. She wasn’t originally planning to wear a costume, not really. Considering the nature of Halloween and the celebration of monsters, it made sense to her that she would simply be her true self for one night. Granted, she would place a small illusion spell on herself to make her form appear less authentic to everyone, of course.
She was certain that her Stanley wouldn’t mind since she wouldn’t be gallivanting about in public either.
‘Honestly, he’s such a worrywart about things like that,’ she thought fondly.
Of course, in preparation for playing her ‘trick’, she sought inspiration from the internet. Swallowing her reservations a bit, she looked through a short list of popular horror games she could appropriate for her own means. It was then that she came across a most peculiar image. It was of a tall, pale regal woman in a white dress that wouldn’t have looked out of place on a noble.
She seemed to have been quite the popular one too, given how there were so many different artist renditions of her appearance. Some were good, some were poor, but most were rather lewd, and those were the interesting ones. It piqued the Lilim’s curiosity and had her research the character, finding more than a few similarities between her and the highborn Mamono Vampires besides their penchant for drinking blood. It also led to Ezraphel researching the game she came from, then the franchise, resulting in her watching and reading several videos about the Resident Evil games.
As for the character, Ezraphel was neither a fan of her personality, her history within the game, nor her transformation. However, much like with the game, her appearance could be appropriated for the Lilim’s use. As a bonus, appearing as her would fit with the theme she was going for, and the thought of seeing Stanley’s reaction to finishing her game only to be greeted with the sight of her dressed as one of the game’s most popular breakout characters was too tempting to pass up.
So it was that Ezraphel decided that rather than use her true form, she would don the wardrobe of the famous Alcina Dimitrescu.
Sure, she was not as tall, aged, pale, or had those little imperfections caused by the character’s condition, but most people recall the illustrations done by online artists when they think of her anyway. Besides, Ezraphel very much doubted such trivial nitpicks would factor into their scrutiny once they took a gander at her.
‘Hopefully it will be the same with Stanley.’
That was a tricky one to determine since Stanley has the tendency to go against expectations. For all she knew, he could be coming out with those insipid airsoft weapons and pelting her with those annoying pellets like he did last time.
‘That reminds me, I need to ensure that those weapons are gone after he finishes the game.’
Thinking of Stanley left her feeling a bit lonely.
“I wonder how he’s doing.”
With a wave of her hand, she was able to peer into the spirit realm she created to find that he was haggling with the Wight Golem.
“Huh,” she blinked, “I didn’t know he could do that.”
Or rather, she didn’t think he would, and the fact that ‘Rowena’ was playing along with him was surprising and a bit concerning. Ezraphel would admit that she wasn’t a master at Golem creation, not in the sense that she couldn’t or didn’t have any experience with the craft, as obviously she could do it and has studied the craft for a number of years with her sister. The issue came with creating golems without imparting true sentience. For most crafters, making a sentient Golem would be an arduous task that required a great deal of magic, but Ezraphel didn’t have that issue—quite the opposite, really.
You could actually say that Ezraphel was a bit overpowered in that sense, something she has taken note of over the months. Earth had so many restrictions and barriers for her to properly utilize her magic, and even after getting past those barriers, there were still certain limitations. Yet once she got past the natural magical gatekeeping and limitations of the world, the effect of her magic became stronger than it would be on Eos.
She didn’t know if the cause was due to her own growth after months of almost daily and copious intake of spirit energy or if she was reaping the benefits of being the first magical entity in a non-magical world. Regardless, her abundance of power made for a detriment in this case. There was a fine line between a ‘smart’ Golem and a ‘sentient’ one, a lesson she learned with ‘A’ the first Golem she created way back in Easter. Thankfully, she took that lesson to heart with the follow-up Golems, who were all rudimentary in their intelligence.
This time around, she wanted to give Stanley a better experience, which is why all of the named Golems are based on the actual Mamono she met and got to know during her travels across Eos. With this decision, it would be a disservice not to increase their intelligence to go along with their personalities. She ensured that her changes didn’t cross the same threshold as they did for ‘A’ or so she hoped.
She was already putting off explaining to Stanley that she created a sentient Golem, but she couldn’t keep ‘A’ a secret forever. Just thinking about that conversation made her feel anxious.
Where’s a distraction when she needs one?
‘Oh, thank the gods’
The sound of the bell had her red-painted lips curving into a smile.
“That’s enough thinking for now. As they say, it is show time.”
As she made her way to the door, Ezraphel picked up a basket of assorted candies that she and her Stanley had pre-packed into little goodie bags the day prior. Upon opening the door, the disguised Lilim was greeted by two children in costumes and an older man who immediately goggled at her appearance.
Meanwhile, the two children raised their bags and shouted, “Trick r’ treat!”
Some Time Later…
Ezraphel didn’t think she would enjoy actually giving away candy, but she was proven wrong. The moment she opened the door to a little girl wearing the most adorable princess costume shouting “twick r’ tweat,” her heart practically melted. It’s been an hour or so since she started, and Ezraphel was thoroughly enjoying herself. Ezraphel came to the conclusion that she very much liked Halloween. Not that she could ever hate it, after all, a holiday that celebrates monsters, was always going to be something she loved.
When her Stanley mentioned that his house was popular during Halloween because he gave out high quantities of assorted, high-quality candies, Ezraphel was ashamed to admit that she was a bit skeptical. Not that she thought Stanley would be deluded enough to lie or overestimate himself, but there was doubt nonetheless.
The fact of the matter is that due to his, in her opinion, poor life choices, Stanley does not have the best reputation. At best, most didn’t care for his existence, and at worst, some suspected him of being the unsavory sort involved in unpleasant businesses. The same line of thought extended to her, though due to her extraverted nature and charming disposition, she was able to curtail the negative preconception they had of her.
The good news was that, through her efforts, she was able to drag Stanley’s reputation from the sewers. The bad news was that Stanley made little to no effort to elevate his reputation. He genuinely convinced himself that he didn’t care what people thought of him. That’s not technically true, but he’s learned to ignore the noise, so to speak. The point is that Ezraphel was doubtful if the popularity he spoke of during Halloween was actually something of note.
It did not take long for evidence disproving this line of thinking to present itself.
When it comes to the neighborhood, not only was Ezraphel aware of how many people lived there, but he also knew at least one or two facts about them. No, she did not make it a hobby to spy on her neighbors; she didn’t need to after befriending the neighborhood gossip. Also, for security sakes (as well as her own curiosity), she did peer into their lives with her magic to ensure that they weren’t a threat to either her or her Stanley. Most of them are nothing of note, but some of them lead very interesting lives behind closed doors.
In any case, the original point is that she had a fairly accurate picture of how many children reside in the neighborhood, where they are in relation to her and Stanley’s home, and how much she could expect at any given time. It took an hour combined with the rate at which the doorbell rang that she figured even Stanley himself might have underestimated just how popular he was at this time of year. It seemed as if families went out of their way to get here, and at various points, Ezraphel greeted multiple groups before sending them off.
A vast majority of the groups actually came from the neighboring community, and this is where things took a turn for the amazing. What really caught her by surprise and actually made her night, hell, her entire week, was the fact that a few of the people from these out-of-town groups who didn’t know of her existence asked for Stanley himself. One of the highlights of the night was that one particular group seemed to be on friendly terms with him beyond him being just a generous stranger on Halloween.
When Ezraphel greeted them by the door, everyone seemed surprised of course but it was one of the children who asked for Stanley himself. Once she explained his absence it was the first and only time that night that Ezraphel saw someone disappointed by his absence.
How did that come to be?
Well, apparently two years ago, their youngest daughter got a bit overzealous with her adventure one Halloween and ended up slipping out of the group of kids who were being watched by their inattentive older child, a friend of the family. Said girl ended up ringing Stanley’s doorbell with tears in her eyes, asking for help, and Stanley ended up walking with her, searching for her family. The search didn’t take particularly long, and they didn’t go very far; however, Stanley was with her every step of the way. He managed to distract the girl with the only thing that would be of interest to the eight-year-old, candy, lots of candy.
They eventually met back up with the group, and eventually their parents found out and personally thanked Stanley for his help. While this encounter did not bring the family close enough for them to consider Stanley a friend, ever since then, it has been something of a tradition for the family to visit his house first when they start trick-r’-treating on his street. All in all, it was a rather heartwarming story and by far the nicest thing she’s ever heard Stanley do for a stranger.
It’s no wonder he never told her anything about it.
Ezraphel could actually hear the excuse he would have for withholding such information from her, and it went something like this:
“If I told you about it, you would have held it over my head and been an even bigger pain in the ass.”
Of course he was right, but she was nonetheless very miffed that he would hide something like this from her. Regardless, Stanley had some explaining to do. Ezraphel won’t stop pressing him until he regales her tales of his altruism. Because in her mind, if he manages to do this once, then surely he has done it again, right?
While she held up hope that she would meet more of those who have been able to peer beneath the surface to witness Stanley’s greatness, she was also fairly sure that it was a one-in-a-million fluke. The next hour proved this to be true, as while there were a few general inquiries into Stanley’s absence, most didn’t really care. The fact of the matter is that the vast majority approved of her over him, regardless of whether they cared to ask for him. That’s fine she didn’t hold it against them…that’s a lie, she did but not by much.
The same, however, could not be said for the troublesome ones.
Ezraphel has been living in the neighborhood long enough that she has become something of a mythic figure in the community. Being a woman of such beauty in a somewhat small and close-knit suburban community would have already made her popular. Her being in a relationship with a man like Stanley didn’t seem to diminish that popularity at all. Add the fact that Stanley would go on to undergo drastic physical changes seemingly (literally!) overnight, and well, let’s just say it didn’t surprise her that more of the older teens showed up at her doorstep.
She could even pick out some admirers for Stanley himself because, despite his surly attitude, he was still an Incubus, and while it may be muted in her presence, he still had his supernatural charm. It made him very noticeable to most women and even some men. He turned a lot of heads and those heads talked. It inspired a great deal of jealously for the Lilim and is a constant source of high number of seeming random bouts of public displays of affection she would spring on him. Not that he knew this because why would she ever tell him that he’s attracting other women (and some men).
She doubt he would actually even care and besides she didn’t need him teasing her on this.
Speaking of unwanted attention Ezraphel actually found it amusing that the two were seen as something of an urban celebrity couple. At least that’s what one of said neighbors told her some time ago when they were gossiping. Apparently this assumption was due to a number of things observed by the general public about them.
Things like them being attractive to the point where they can legitimately be mistaken for actors and/or models. Then there is also fact that neither seems to work regular jobs yet they wear high quality clothes. Also whenever they are out grocery shopping they buy the high-quality or expensive brand foodstuff and pay with a platinum credit card. Ezraphel thought that the rumors of their wealth and fame/importance were a bit overblown, or understated, considering who and what she really is.
Regardless, Halloween presented the perfect opportunity for many to seek her out without seeming meddlesome. Once word of her choice in costume spread the situation turned from mildly amusing to bothersome. Ezraphel can handle being ogled but not when it interrupts or otherwise disturbs the trick-or’-treating process. When she opens the door, Ezraphel expects to be greeted by cute children wearing adorable costumes not horny teenagers and perverted old men looking to ‘shoot their shot’ as it were.
Things came to a head when a few particularly shameless young men decided to disrupt her night while she was in the middle of distributing candy. Ezraphel has heard her Stanley complain about, as well as seen a few examples of, these so-called delusional clout chasers obsessed with getting attention online through the pursuit of ‘viral videos’ at the cost of common decency or consideration for others,. Ezraphel did not care for people like this, and she wasn’t about to become their prop or let them ruin the children’s night.
It was a coincidence, then, that their recording devices all decided to malfunction when they tried to put her in focus. Ezraphel liked to think she wasn’t the only one to savor their frustration when this fact became apparent. With no means of capturing her image or recording her on video, they eventually left. And by the grace of her magic, none of these individuals will be able to disrupt this neighborhood’s Halloween night.
A simple spell urging them to behave was what he went with, though she was tempted to do much worse once one of the chaperoning parents divulged some of the things they got up to in the past.
Honestly, the nerve of them
After fixing the wards on the house to deter anyone other than legitimate trick-or-treaters, things wound down to a state of normalcy.
And to think it’s only been a little after two hours.
“I wonder how Stanley is doing.”
It’s been a while since she checked while she was out putting up those wards around the neighborhood. As she looked into the pocket realm, however, her eyes widened.
~Banishing A Banshee~
Good news: the church compound turned out to be a lot bigger than he thought it was.
Better news: his map is working again.
Bad news: there are fucking Skeletons everywhere!
Worst news: pissed off Goth mommy Banshee is terrifying.
Currently, Stanley is running for his life.
He didn’t think he’d ever run so much in his entire life, but thanks to his map now working, he was still making headway towards the exit. Even if he didn’t, the fact that Moira seemed to be getting more desperate and the Skeleton’s more active lent credence to this fact. Just as he thought he was beginning to see the metaphorical light at the end of the tunnel, a thought suddenly entered his mind.
Hey, doofus, what about the bust?
And just like that, Stanley almost tripped over his feet. He completely forgot about the thing that was supposed to act as a key to the door that would get him out of the game!
You know what this means, right?
It means he’ll have to turn back and find the damn thing.
‘Where do I even start?’
A lull in the chase had him check the map to find that there were places in the cemetery that he hadn’t checked. Of course, there’s also the church where the bust is most likely located, even though he hadn’t seen it when he was there earlier. He could just go back there, but he really didn’t want to be in an enclosed space with a horde of undead and a pissed-off Banshee.
“And speaking of…”
Said horde and Banshee caught up with him and were now in the process of cornering him. Seeing this, he stretched for a bit, popping his joints and neck, before running away with purpose. He would search through the unexplored zones, hoping to find the bust or, at the very least, something that would allow him to circumvent his lack of weapon handicap. The flashlight wasn’t cutting it because he witnessed a few of the skeletons he doused with holy light getting back up, meaning that the flashlight wasn’t a permanent solution.
An Hour Later…
After far too long, Stanley searched the entire map, exploring all corners, and unfortunately, he found no bust. What he did find instead were seemingly miscellaneous items whose descriptions ended up being lore tidbits about Moira. Admittedly, the things he found were actually well written, and he managed to piece together a few damning things about the Banshee chasing after him. That didn’t mean he didn’t curse his luck, as he couldn’t see how the information could help him in his current predicament, save to use it in a play for psychological warfare.
Said tactic sounded very appealing as time went on since, after a few flashes to the face, the Banshee learned to keep out of sight. Instead of charging in like a vengeful spirit, she got tactical and opted to wait in the background to strike during a moment of opportunity. That tends to happen when he gets swarmed or cornered by the Skeletons.
And speaking of, during the time Stanley was ducking, dodging, weaving, and flashing through the horde, he made a breakthrough. The initial fear of being surrounded by a horde of undead without a proper weapon eventually dulled with time as he realized that he wasn’t dealing with a Bogey, a Minotaur, or even Zombies, but Skeletons. Now MGE Skeletons weren’t ‘bone-girls’ per se but more like bone Golems. They had skeletal arms and legs; however, the torso and head were those of a woman, with decorative bone fragments such as bone masks and ribcage corsets.
Despite looking sturdier than classic RPG skeletons, the truth is that they went down relatively easily. He found this out during the futile search for the bust, which ended up being, well, a bust, and he got so frustrated that he ended up taking said frustration out on a one of them. As a reminder, Stanley is an incubus with enough strength to lift and carry Ezraphel, who is at least three times his body weight, and combined with a rage boost, the Skeleton didn’t have a chance.
Fast forward and it turns out he didn’t even need to use the flashlight for anything other than Moira herself, a fact that seemed to irritate the Banshee to no end. He had the distinct impression that she knew he was gathering information on her or at least desecrating her special spots (since that’s where he found said information) because for every lore bit he found, she made a desperate lunge for him. Moira seems awfully keen on grabbing him, and while he has no idea what would happen if she actually did, he’s going to err on the side of caution and not find out.
He still had a contingency for that, or if the flashlight fails at a critical juncture, but who knows if punching her in the face would actually serve to drive her away or piss her off even more? In any case, he eventually made his way back to the church with newfound resolve. The Skeletons attacks, which had been progressively escalating in both numbers and tactics, started tapering off the closer he got until the bone-girls stopped altogether. It seems Moira understood what he was trying to accomplish and accepted his challenge.
The fact that the horde of Skeletons kept their distance and the winds no longer carried the wailing rage of a Banshee would have been enough of an indicator. Then he arrived at church, and the doors opened to pitch blackness that dared any brave or foolish soul to enter.
“Well, this is a fuuuck that moment if I ever saw one,” he mumbled.
He took a perfunctory glance over his shoulder to see a veritable wall of skeletons on all sides. He wasn’t going to be leaving without a fight, not that he planned to run away in any case.
“If you think I’m stepping into pitch darkness, being a corpse must have rotted your fucking mind, Moira,” he yelled out.
There was a beat of silence as the atmosphere itself seemed to pause before torches were ignited by blue fire, brightening the interior. He definitely didn’t earn any points with that, but, eh, she already wanted him dead. The moment he stepped into the church, the doors slammed shut behind him, which only elicited an annoyed look over his shoulder. Looking back, he found Moira standing before him at a respectable distance.
“I know who you are, thief,” the Banshee said.
“Saw my wanted poster, did you?”
“Yes, the others are searching for you as we speak.”
“What about you? Looking to cash in the reward?”
“I care not for wealth,” she said, shaking her head. “I will have you return the sacred artifacts.”
At this, she glared, and he almost snapped, ‘They’re fucking D-batteries!’
“As much as I would like to do that, I heard that your ‘sacred artifact’ is the only thing that can get past enchanted armor. Plus, you know, it’s the only thing protecting me from you and your Skeleton army outside.”
Before he even started the conversation, his eyes were surreptitiously scanning the room for the bust, to no avail.
Moira tilted her head. “You seem distracted. Are you perhaps looking for this?”
She reached behind her to produce a marble bust in her likeness.
‘Well, so much for plan, whatever the heck I’m at right now,’ he thought sarcastically.
“I understand that these sculptures act as keys of sorts, and you need them to leave this place.”
“Any chance you’d let me leave with that?”
“Well, in that case…”
Like a seasoned Red Dead Redemption player, Stanley drew the flashlight with quickness. As the holy light hit her face, Moira shrieked, staggering back and dropping the bust as she covered her face. Stanley shut off the flashlight and sprinted towards her before leaping up to do a drop kick complete with a Bruce Lee noise.
It’s a good thing he had plenty of practice before; otherwise, he would have flubbed that sequence. Otherwise, his feet landed on her chest and sent her flying into the pulpit, but he didn’t really care about that. He scrambled to his feet, picked up the bust, and stored it. Just a wailing scream knocked him back off his feet.
Before he could get back up, Moira was on top of him. She was crying once again, though the fury marred her otherwise sorrowful visage. As she straddled him, Moira made constant grabs for the flashlight; however, he successfully held her off. When her attempts failed, she switched tactics, grabbing Moira by the head and proceeding to scream directly into his face. At this proximity, her ever-present aura of sorrow was already affecting him; however, the scream broke the proverbial dam.
Without his prompting, he felt a prevailing sadness he hadn’t felt since his uncle’s funeral, and combined with the memory, it stirred his emotions enough that tears fell from his eyes as he choked back a sob. The only thing keeping him from outright bawling was his stubborn pride and anger.
“You bitch,” he spat or hiccupped.
‘I’ll give you something to cry about!’
With that thought, he gave her a headbutt, and it wasn’t a soft one. As the Banshee recoiled, he used the flashlight to bash the side of her head, throwing her off. With tears and snot on his face, Stanley got to his feet and shined the holy light on the laid-out Banshee, who gave another shriek of pain and fright before scrambling on all fours in a row of pews.
Stanley did not let her get far.
“Where do you think you’re going?” He screamed out, feeling like Ace Ventura wrangling an alligator, he grabbed the Banshee by the hem of her dress and hauled her back. “Don’t start what you can’t finish!”
As the thin-looking fabric (not so) surprisingly ripped Stanley fell on his butt with a yelp. He ended up ripping damn near the entirety of the bottom half of her dress.
‘Isn’t this shit supposed to be enchanted?’
And to the surprise of no one, it appeared that Moira chose to go commando, leaving him staring at her bare, pale ass before she flipped herself over to sit on said ass. She ended up not giving him an unobstructed view between her legs as she repositioned to cover them up.
“You pervert!” she screeched with a blush on her pale cheeks.
“Says the bitch wearing no panties under a thin near see-through dress!” he shot back wiping his face with the before tossing the fabric.
Whether it be ripping her dress, using it as a rag, or his words, Moira let out another scream. Stanley brandished the flashlight again to shine on her just as the sound wave hit, causing it to go off course a bit. Suddenly, Moira’s scream was cut off by a salacious moan. Stanley’s bleary vision cleared to find the Banshee down, having been knocked back by the light; however, her legs were still up and now spread.
Also, the light was shining directly between her legs .
The light fizzled out, but the damage was done. Well he didn’t see any actual damage, but he did see something that caused him to almost pull a Mr. Krabs and pull out his eyes to wipe them clean. He settled for thoroughly wiping his face clean of tears (and snot) before looking back.
‘Nope, my eyes aren’t deceiving me.’
What Stanley was referring to was the miniature silver winged cross that is the symbol of the Chief God perched on the Banshee’s clitoris. Stanley could only stare, and as Moira shakily sat up from having her pussy blasted by holy light, she saw where his eyes were and panicked.
“D-don’t look!” She yelled, attempting to cover, only for Stanley to wordlessly shine the holy light between her legs before her hands could reach it.
Another moan of pleasure, this one louder, escaped her lips before she fell back. Her body shook and quivered, especially her legs, and as for between them, well, let’s just say she was leaking. Stanley watched this with a blank expression; however, his thoughts were anything but. As he put together what he was seeing along with the bits of lore and formed a hypothesis, his eyes widened.
“Get the fuck out,” he breathed, “really?”
As Moira once again sat up, she found Stanley looming over her like a specter—a complete reversal of their roles.
“Hey,” he began looking down at her, “so is this whole ‘lamenting priestess’ shtick some kind of fetish for you?”
“Of course not!”
The expression of outrage immediately changed when he once again shined the holy light on her pussy.
As he did, he continued, “Really? Because the instant aheago from having holy light shined on your rosary clit pierced pussy says otherwise.”
Moira shook with pleasure as he stopped, yet she gritted her teeth and glared through tear-stained eyes at him, “Stop that!”
Once again, he shined the light on her WAP and took a perverse amount of joy watching her buck, shake, and writhe in pleasure. Was he going too far? Maybe, but after spending the last hour ducking her and her army, there was something cathartic about finally having one over her. Sensing that she was reaching her peak, Stanley turned off the light, eliciting a frustrated moan from her.
As she looked at him, he gave a shrug and said, “I thought you wanted me to stop.”
The glare returned, but before she could retort, he held a hand up.
“So here’s what’s going to happen: I’m going to walk out that door and out of your hair.”
“You will do no-”
“Shut up,” she said while threateningly waving the flashlight, causing her to flinch and stop talking, “as I was saying. I’m leaving, but before I do, and I can’t believe I’m saying this, I will give you the greatest orgasm of your unlife, and if you can make yourself useful to me somewhere down the line, I’ll do it again.”
“Or I can kill you permanently.”
“I have the blessing of the Goddess of Death. I cannot die.”
“You want to stress-test that?” he asked with a menacing look.
The effect was immediate as the Banshee once again flinched “no.”
“So what’s it going to be? And keep in mind that either way, I’m leaving.”
Moira shifted uncomfortably, saying nothing but spreading her legs and lifting up the top of her dress, revealing her pale breast, with each nipple covered with a winged rosary piercing.
‘At least I don’t have to use my hands.’
“Y-you better not disappoint me boy, o-otherwise, I will be very cross.”
So says the red-faced Goth mommy, presenting herself to him with equal parts trepidation and barely concealed excitement.
“Fuck it, hands on.”
Ezraphel watched as her Stanley began to absolutely ravish the Banshee-Golem; its cries of pleasure echoed through the speakers of the television from which the image was presented in 4K HD. But even as she marveled at his work, Ezraphel bit the hem of the wide-brim hat that was part of her costume in frustration and jealousy.
‘Oh sure, he does it to advance in a stupid game, but when I ask him to do it, he gets a conniption!’ she all but cried.
“Stanley, you IDIOT!”
“Ah you made it back!” exclaimed an excited Rowena as she clapped “so how was it?”
Underneath his scathing scrutiny her smile was slowly wiped from her face “that bad?”
“You didn’t tell me she had a fucking Skeleton army.”
Rowena blinked “I was unaware. I hope that did not present too much of a problem.”
“…” the stink eye she received in return held her hand up in surrender.
“Were there any other complications?”
“Did you know about Moira?”
“In regards to…?” she trailed off meaningfully.
Based on the bits of lore he discovered, his own theories and the experience he had with the Banshee herself Stanley formed a hypothesis that more or less told him what Moira’s deal is. As a human Moira was your typical priestess devoted to the church and the Chief God and as is the theme with MGE she was also sexually repressed. At some point what was likely a Demon came along under a disguise and wormed her way into Moira’s good graces before corrupting her.
Unfortunately for said Demon Moira’s sexual awakening didn’t exactly go to plan since she had a special case of fanaticism. Even when she was spiritually too far gone instead of turning into a Succubus or Demon or switching to worshipping the Dark God as a Dark Priestess Moira rejected both and chose death at the hands of the Inquisition. According to the journal she wrote of the events she burned in holy fire with a smile on her face and love in her breast.
Her devotion impressed Hel, the God of the Death (and Life apparently) and seeing her potential decided to pluck her from the afterlife using what Stanley believed was a loophole. Moira may not have been monsterized but she was still corrupted when she died so the Chief God wouldn’t take her soul into heaven. Since she already rejected the Dark God Hel decided to make her pitch.
Using her authority over life and death as a Goddess she offered Moira a second chance to once again devote herself to the Chief God. Moira took the deal and was resurrected as a priestess of Hel otherwise known as a Banshee. Although since she’s a Mamono now, her fanatic devotion to the church and the Chief God got twisted into an obsession layered with sexual overtones.
“To make a psychological analysis short” Stanley explained to Rowena “Moira’s a closet pervert masochist role-playing as a fallen former priestess of the church trying to redeem herself while fantasizing about being punished for her since and gets sexual gratification from being hurt by holy instruments.”
With his bland expression and deadpan delivery it took a moment for Rowena to parse through that information in which she blinked owlishly at him.
He kept up a glare up for a few moments more before retrieving the flashlight out of his inventory and after switching it on shined it on Rowena’s face.
“Ah!” the Wight yelped before ducking under the table of her carriage shop “what do you think you’re doing!?”
“Well I just spent the last half hour using it to pleasure your girl in her masturbatorium of a church.”
In response Stanley pointed at himself “hey, look at me.”
Rowena hesitantly poked her head in view.
“Look at me”
“I am looking.”
“Do I look like I’m joking right now?”
Rowena searched his expression while getting to her full sitting height and grimacing “you are not” she frowned “so it is true then, her ‘devotion’ has all been an act.”
Stanley made a so-so gesture “kind of…she’s basically delusional is what I’m getting at.”
“But then that means…” she trailed before her expression into one of righteous fury “that bitch!”
“Hey as much as I’d like to stand here and listen to your tirade, I still have three more of your former subordinates to get through.”
Rowena seethed “is she dead?”
Stanley clearly remembered her body disappearing after wat could be described as the most powerful orgasm of her unlife.
“Tch, missed opportunity”
“Meh, I got mine.”
‘And also ideas for what I’m going to do with Ezraphel later.’
Somewhere a disguised Lilim felt a pleasurable chill go down her spine that had her lips trembling in anxious excitement.
Rowena huffed “well at least now with that device you will be able to bypass the protective enchantments on Beatrice’s armor” she paused “though you will have a harder time since her enchantments are much stronger than her subordinates. And she will not simply stand by and let you weaken her so be careful.”
“I get it.”
“I don’t think you do” the Wight narrowed her eyes “Beatrice is the most skilled warrior in these lands. You will not find her an easy opponent like the ones you’ve fast so far.”
‘I expected as much from a boss.’
He didn’t say that though and instead switch subjects “speaking of subordinates, what am I dealing with for Beatrice? Not Zombies or Skeletons I think.”
“The former, as I understand it most of them have their combat prowess supplemented by armor enchantments.”
‘So basically Zombies in supernatural power armor’
“Got it” he stated before offloading his loot.
Despite his complaints about the whole Moira situation the drops he got were pretty sweet actually. As an example after her defeat Moira dropped an effigy of the Goddess of Death (and Life) herself that had quickly gained Rowena attention. Stanley gave the undead highborn a moment to marvel at the effigy before clearing his throat.
“You can make goo goo eyes at the statue on your own time woman.”
His words caused the Wight to glance at him and, in his mind, suppress her embarrassment by clearing her throat.
“What else do you need?”
“Got anything new?”
“I’m afraid not. Unfortunately Beatrice runs a tight ship. You’ll have to cause some chaos to distract her forces in order for my agents to make a grab for anything useful.”
Taking a look at her wears he found that not necessarily be true “what about that?”
‘That’ referred to the canister of green gas.
“Oh it’s just something an agent managed to find laying around. Why? What is it?”
“It’s a fuel source for some of the weapons.”
With that he retrieved his Tokyo Marui Hi-Cappa 5.1 from his inventory.
“I had a feeling that was the reason why you went back to the mansion.”
“Yeah…” he trailed off examining his new semi-auto gas blowback pistol.
Turns out like any church Moira’s has a donation box but instead of regular currency it had a dozen silver coins in them. Stanley actually took a detour back to the mansion’s showroom to finally get the Hi-Cappa as well as a few gems the latter of which he sold.
“I’ll take the gas, you got any more?”
She shook her head “unfortunately such things are now locked within Eileen’s sorcery tower which is protected by magic. So far it’s the only place my agents have not been able to infiltrate. Eileen is a brilliant sorceress and does not have servants, preferring to rely on her magic.”
That means he won’t be able to go HAM with the Hi-Cappa until after he secures a steady supply of gas and who knows if he’ll come across other gas blowback weapons?
‘At this rate the damn Proshop is going to be sticking with me till the end’
He ended up buying a few spare shotgun shells, bb pellets and health potions.
The three other bosses were situated in the castle proper with Beatrice taking it upon herself to act as its first line of defense. To that end she closed the doors and put up fortifications while her forces maintained a constant vigilance. Going through the front door was suicide but luckily Rowena knew the castle like it was the back of her hand and gave him directions to a secret entrance.
Said entrance was a crawlspace tunnel that led him to a dungeon of all things. A dungeon that had not a lick of light forcing him to use his flashlight, luckily the thing had different settings that enabled it to function like a regular flashlight. He found that if he stopped blasting holy light before the battery overcharges he could use the regular flashlight to save himself a blowout that would plunge him into darkness. The best part is that he can use it like a regular flashlight while the batteries cool down.
That is an especially important aspect because as it is with these things the dungeons weren’t empty. He really shouldn’t have been surprised but you try creeping through a dark dank dungeon with dilapidated cells and medieval torture weapons complete with dry bloodstains, scrawling notes that imply human experimentation and actual bodies left and not be surprised when one of the bodies suddenly lunges at you.
Ezraphel did too good a job at the horror aspect god dammit.
‘How the hell could a snowflake who still screams at B-rated horror movies be so effective at evoking fear?’
In any case he made it out of the basement dungeons to a side entrance that led him to the battlements overlooking the courtyard. Down below he found over two dozen knights patrolling the area. If Rowena hadn’t already told him he old never guess that those armored soldiers were Zombies, they didn’t look or move like Zombies at all.
‘Those must be some pretty good enchantments.’
They have to be in order to turn a horde of shambling corpses into an effective medieval army. And unlike every other enemy he’s encountered so far these looked and move like actual soldiers. Their armored feet clacked with sharp rigid movements, their bodies are completely covered with armor that gleamed with a faint hue of that ghostly aura and they carried actual weapons like spears and swords. That’s not all, there were towers scattered about with archers and few sentries with freaking trumpets on the lookout.
All in all not only could he not go in guns blazing but it looked like the stealth option was also out if only because he didn’t think he was good enough to actually pull it off in this setting. He’s betting those sentries have more special awareness than a videogame AI.
‘Best to avoid that’ he then paused ‘except if I’m betting man I will definitely have to go through that courtyard to get to Beatrice.’
Eventually he came upon a fork in the path and according to the map one led to the courtyard while the other led to somewhere unknown. He decided to travel the unknown path passing a row of armor suits on display.
Stanley spun around just in time to duck a halberd to the neck from the not-so-inanimate suit of armor.
“Nice prank bro” Stanley snarled whipping out the Proshop and firing a round into the helm only for the pellet to ping harmlessly off the armor.
‘The fuck?’ he thought in confusion before using the knife to parry a thrust and doing a front kick that only resulted in a slight stagger.
Stanley noted that the area where his foot hit briefly lit up in purple runes.
‘Oh right, enchantments’ he thought before whipping out the holy flashlight.
The holy light had an interesting effect on the armor. He saw the magic runes briefly lit up before burning away and with it gone the shining armor lost its luster and the once slow yet precise movements of the knight became even more jerky and cumbersome than even the regular Zombies as the wearer bore the weight and stiffness of the armor itself. A single shot to the knee and a stab through the face hole in the helmet finished her off.
After this he turned to the other suits of armor that stood immobile the entire time “well?”
In response both armors swiveled their head to him and in synchronization raised their arms and prepared to engage.
Two Minutes Later…
Stanley entered the door to find a storeroom of sorts filled with destructible crates and a familiar carrying bag.
‘Can it be?’
Stanley immediately rushed over to the bag and opened it to reveal a rifle. To be exact it was the Amoeba AS-01 Striker sniper rifle. As he took up the new weapon he looked around and broke the crates receiving more pellets and coin. After feeding pellets into the magazine he refitted the cartridge, took aim and adjusted the scope. After making some slight adjustments used the bolt to chamber a pellet and grinned.
As good as it felt to get his hands on a reliable long ranged weapon that could pick off his enemies.
His grin turned into a frown as he mumbled “except it’s not going to mean jack shit because of those armors.”
Switching the rifle to his flashlight Stanley pondered what to do. The only way for him to bypass the damn enchantments was to use the flashlight which meant getting in close. Not a problem except the fucking archers will turn him into a pretty convincing pin cushion if they move as efficiently as the ones he fought moments before. As he thought about his plan of action he stared at flashlight and on a whim began to finagle with it. Admittedly he should have done this before but it was just one of those things he overlooked in the grand scheme since it seemed to be a basic flashlight.
But he figured if he missed the various switch configurations then he might have missed something else. Then a thought occurred to him.
‘Don’t some flashlights have ways to adjust focus?’
As he thought it his hand went to the top edge and began to twist. It put up a fight at first but eventually he managed to twist it and a flick of the flashlight to regular had him see the result. He could make it wider or more concentrated which was par for the course. Things change however when he activates the holy light function. The wide focus results in a conical blast while the narrow focus results in a concentrated beam that leaves a scorch mark on the wall he tested it on.
He looked from the flashlight to the sniper and back again.
“I can work with this.”
The knights were milling about as per usual, their forms never tire and their training made them never waver resulting in a group of organic semi-automatons ever vigilantly going about their task of securing the castle defenses in perpetuity. The usual clanking of armored boots is disrupted however by the sound of burning followed by a sharp yet brief crack of sound.
Suddenly one of their sentries fell to the ground missing the enchantments of their armor as well as their head. A moment later another shot rang out and another knight fell to the ground in the same predicament. At this point an alarm was supposed to be sounded however before the knight in question could bring up the trumpet a piercing light hit her helm burning away the enchantments and subsequently deteriorating the metal before a shot rang out and her head seemingly explodes.
“Boom headshot” Stanley mutters as he toggled the sniper’s bolt action before taking aim with the flashlight again.
It went like this for the next several minutes with the two prong attack of holy light to weaken and disorient them and headshots to finish them off. Even when they were able to identify his location he continued managing to take out half their numbers before they could reach him. As for the ones that did get to him they were quickly overwhelmed by a widespread blast of holy light followed by a close up point blank shotgun blasts to the face.
After half an hour of running, gunning and looting in a play style that could best be described as Alan Wake meets Doom Stanley’s compass alerts him to Rowena’s presence which he follows to a previously empty room that was now housing the Wight.
“Well hello there” she greeted with a smile.
‘General Rowena’ he thought to himself in a raspy voice before shaking the thought.
He couldn’t resist.
“You seem happy” he greeted.
“But of course” the Wight answered “it has been so long since I’ve roamed this castle in…” she trailed off before shaking her head “regardless you have my thanks.”
“Cool, you know I’ve searched all over the place but I can’t seem to find any of those weapons you promised she would have lying around.”
Under his accusing stare Rowena adopted a thoughtful expression as she used her fan to tap her chin “peculiar isn’t it? I’m not sure why that is.”
“Don’t you have spies everywhere?”
“Beatrice is the only one to have subordinates that are completely and utterly loyal to her. It is a consequence of letting her personally oversee their growth and training as soldiers” Rowena added “she is also very good at her job in defending against all manner of intruders.”
“So your reach doesn’t extend as far as you led me to believe then?”
At this Rowena scowled “I did manage to find one peculiar weapon though.”
As she said this she revealed…
“That’s a grenade” he said matter-of-factly.
“Indeed” Rowena answered using the fan to block her mouth.
To be precise it was an ASG Storm Apocalypse impact grenade. An airsoft grenade that houses 155 pellets and has a 360 degree dispersal pattern going at 67ms or 220fps for an effective radius up to 10m or 32.8ft. It’s easy to load, easy to reset, reusable and is gas powered. It is one of if not the most reliable airsoft grenades out there and his personal favorite. If there was any reason/weapon for him to save his gas then it would be for this.
Stanley couldn’t help but grin something the Wight immediately caught on as she returned the grin.
“I take it you approve?”
“How much you got?”
~Dueling A Dullahan~
Stanley arrived at a training yard, where a woman stood. The moment his eyes landed on her, there was no doubt in his mind that she was Beatrice. She was dressed head to toe in an all-black form fitting armor with red runic linings, complete with a cape. Her exposed face was pale, denoting her undead status, yet her hair was bright golden blonde and done up in a long braid that rested over her shoulder.
Her sharp red eyes narrowed as she said, “you are late.”
This made him raise a brow “I didn’t realize I was on a timer.”
Even as he said this, he regarded her with the utmost caution. He had the Hi-Cappa in hand, which he had not used throughout his rampage in the outer castle.
“You met with Rowena just now, didn’t you?”
Stanley wasn’t particularly perturbed by this question “and what if I did?”
“If you’ve made it this far with her, then you’ve bested Miss X.”
“And Moira,” he added.
That seemed to give the woman a bit of pause “it would seem your notoriety is well deserved.”
“I have notoriety?”
“The emissary warned us that you were a warrior of considerable skill.”
‘What the hell has Ez been saying about me?’
Outwardly, he shrugged “well, I did just trounce your army.”
“Indeed,” the Dullahan agreed before reaching behind her to brandish an obsidian death scythe, “which is why I won’t be underestimating you.”
‘She says while brandishing a farming tool against a man with guns.’
Yeah, he knows the weapon is like anime, which subscribes to the rule of cool over practicality, but she really did look a little ridiculous with that thing.
That was all the warning he got before she lunged at him, and suddenly she didn’t look so ridiculous. In a literal flash, he brandished the flashlight and shined a wide cone of holy light in her face. To his shock, the Dullahan didn’t stop merely grunted as she was enveloped by the holy light but continued with her attack. With a curse, Stanley flicked off the flashlight and dove to the side. He rolled onto his knees and turned to brandish the flashlight again, only to have the bottom end of the scythe knock his hand off course.
Unfortunately, he couldn’t keep a grip and the flashlight was flung away, causing him to panic. As he scrambled back on all fours, Stanley popped off a few shots with his Hi-Cappa and even in his panicked state, he aimed for the head. To his dismay, however, Beatrice didn’t so much as flinch as the pellets pinged off of what seemed to be a forcefield protecting her face. He didn’t even have time to think of a curse as the woman did an overhead vertical swing down that had Stanley hop back while spreading his legs.
*Crack* went the scythe blade as it lodged into the stone floor just a few inches from his groin.
Stanley had scrambled to his feet, glancing to the side at the discarded flashlight. He swapped his pistol for another weapon. Meanwhile, Beatrice pulled the scythe from the floor to continue her assault. The blade inched to his neck only to be met and parried by his knife, which took the Dullahan off guard enough for him to get a front kick in. Despite putting all his strength into the kick, Beatrice only stumbled back a few steps, but that was good enough for him.
Stanley ran to the flashlight, looking back in time to see Beatrice catching up to him and ready to swing. He lunged for the flashlight, incidentally missing the blade of the scythe. He managed to grab the artifact and get to his knees, only to freeze and look down to see the tip of the scythe exit his chest from the back.
Stanley felt a coldness seeping through his chest even as his pulse rose before he was pulled along by the scythe blade and tossed to the other side of the training yard. Stanley lay there for a moment, coming to terms with what just happened. In a state of disbelief, but not enough to ignore the rapid clanking footsteps of the armored woman, Stanley scrambled to his feet and once again shined the light upon her. Once again, Beatrice merely flinched as she aimed her next attack at the offending artifact.
And once again, Stanley parried the blade, taking the opportunity to gain distance as he flicked the light off to recharge. Beatrice did not let up, and Stanley was forced on the back foot. In one hand, he held the enchanted combat knife in a forward grip out front, while in the other, he held the flashlight in a reverse grip. For several minutes, Beatrice continued her unrelenting assault; however, the longer she took, the more Stanley adapted. The previous panic he felt ebbed away; his sloppy moves became more polished, and eventually he slipped back into the gamer zone.
As the tip of the crescent blade once again came for him, Stanley dove under her charge and made sure not to take his eyes off of her. This time, instead of casting a wide cone of holy light, his flashlight cast a concentrated beam directly at her face. This had a twofold effect of not only finally breaking the armor enchantment but also blinding the Dullahan herself. For the first time, Beatrice’s stoic façade was broken, if only temporarily, as she let loose a brief scream.
For his part, Stanley’s celebration of this small victory was internal and very brief. Admittedly, seeing that blade sticking out of his chest, even if it didn’t hurt or did any kind of long-lasting damage beyond draining his stamina a bit, put the fear of God in him. Beatrice has proven herself to be the most dangerous enemy he has faced so far with that one stunt.
Case in point, rather than panic and flail about Beatrice’s movements became reserved as she used a gauntlet-clad hand to shield her face while backing away. In response, Stanley switched his knife for the Hi-Cappa but kept the flashlight in a tight reverse grip near his chest.
*Bang* *Bang* *Bang*
Three consecutive shots rang out: one pinged off her hand, one hit the top of her head, and the other hit her neck. That last one Stanley felt had the Dullahan react by using the hand protecting her face to quickly grab the hem of her cape and used it to shield herself. It was a play straight out of the Batman’s book and one that frustrated him more than he liked to admit.
“Son of a…”
He was cut off when Beatrice abruptly lunged at him with an almost inhumanely fast swing. Luckily, Stanley was wound up enough to be twitchy in his reactions and switched the flashlight for his combat knife.
Hasty as it was, Stanley was able to parry the scythe. The action caused his arm to tremble with effort, but he ignored it to shoot at her head once again, letting off three shots. Beatrice swung at the hand holding the gun, only for Stanley to duck, switch the knife for the flashlight, and shine a wide beam. The Dullahan snarled, swinging for his legs, which he hopped over the blade keeping the light stream steady.
Beatrice transitioned that swing into a sharp turn that saw her cape take a sharp swipe at his face. Stanley had to lean back to avoid the cape swipe; however, in doing so, he completely missed the reverse roundhouse kick until an armored, heeled foot slammed into his chest. Stanley wheezed as his back slammed into the wall. He felt his health drop into the metaphorical red as his body slid down the wall to land on his ass.
He coughed a bit but had no time to properly recover as Beatrice was already charging towards him. With his back aching, his mind racing, and his heart thumping, he couldn’t get to his feet. Instead, he waited until she was close before swapping out the knife for the flashlight and shining the holy light upon her. In response, Beatrice covered her eyes with her armored wrist, undeterred.
That worked out well for Stanley because, as she got within scythe swinging distance, he switched to the shotgun and blasted her legs. An unprepared Beatrice found herself tripping on buckshot pellets at a speed and angle that saw her face planting on the wall near Stanley. As for the man himself, he quickly rolled out of the way to a kneeling position and saw that she managed to prevent a somewhat embarrassing face injury by catching herself against the wall.
Unfortunately for her, she left herself wide open for a pissed-off Stanley holding a shotgun to her side at near-point blank range. She didn’t even have a chance to realize what was happening before Stanley unloaded six shells into her upper body with a focus on her head.
As the last round was unloaded, Stanley swapped weapons once again and whipped out the flashlight at the Dullahan, who had taken to curling in a fetal position to weather the onslaught, taking care to cover her exposed head. As the light shone upon her, however, she chose to act, taking the scythe in a desperate swing as she rolled to her feet once again, using her cape to once again shield herself from the light.
Beatrice looked down as something rolled past her cape shield to bounce against her planted knee. It was a long cylinder, but octagonal in shape, and made from a black material she’d never seen before. The ‘face’ had wording imprinted on it that spelled out STORM, with the ‘O’ taking the shape of a tornado. Despite her confusion, she’d already moved to distance herself the moment she laid eyes on it. Unfortunately for Dullahan, it was far too late for that.
The world seemingly slowed as Beatrice witnessed the top of the object—no, the weapon—open and began to spew those tiny beads that had been the ammunition for the man’s weapons. Unlike before, however, the force was much stronger as the weapon seemingly exploded. As the pellets impacted her, Beatrice could not help but let loose a scream as she felt the things rip into her armor, which had been significantly weakened by the man’s onslaught.
The impact also launched the Dullahan away, and as she landed on her back, Beatrice took a moment to get her bearings. Thanks to her training, she didn’t let go of her weapon even after that ordeal. She managed to get to her knees when
The hand holding her weapon was hit, causing her to drop it, and before she could retrieve it, her neck guard was hit, damaging the metal literally protecting her most debilitating weakness. More heavy and precise shots kept hitting her neck and head area, causing the Dullahan to stop, drop, and roll away. Coincidentally she did so away from her weapon which she only realized belatedly. She only stopped once the shots did, at which point she rolled to her feet, ready to face her opponent, only to find him sprinting towards her with a knife and flashlight in hand.
Once again, she was hit by the holy light, and this time it did elicit a scream of pain from her, however brief it was. Despite this, she gritted her teeth and waited for him to get closer before springing into action. Unfortunately, she underestimated both his relatively small size and speed as the man deftly dove under attempts to grapple to get behind her. Once there, he swung his arm just under her thigh, ignoring his face pressed just above her rear, and proceeded to bodily flip them into a suplex.
Beatrice flailed and screamed as her world was literally turned upside down. As the back of her head met the hard ground, the damaged neck guard got completely destroyed, causing the sharp impact to loosen the tentative hold of her detachable head, sending it rolling away from her body. As Stanley rolled away from his now headless body, he got to his feet in time to see demon energy explode from an open neck hole like a geyser. Stanley got to his feet, branding his flashlight and Hi-Cappa as he regarded the body; however, it did not move.
Beatrice’s voice broke up the silence “it appears you’ve bested me.”
Stanley sharply turned to find Beatrice’s head looking at him with a frown.
“It looks like it” he replied keeping one eye on the head even as he maneuvered himself towards Beatrice’s discarded weapon.
“You should be proud,” the head continued.
He arrived at the weapon and flashed it with a concentrated beam of holy light that made the red sigils etched on the blade tremble before losing their glow. He then kicked it out of reach from her body and head.
This did not please Beatrice at all “that was uncalled for.”
“Stop acting like you can’t control your body like that.”
“Yeah, I ain’t no fool.”
“Clearly,” she sighed before glaring at him, “well, get on with it.”
He closed the distance toward her while keeping her body in his peripheral vision.
“Before that, do you mind answering some questions for me?”
“You are the victor here, so I am compelled to do as you wish.”
He almost rolled his eyes at that and the only reason why he didn’t was because there wasn’t a speck of innuendo in her words.
“I heard you collected weapons like this,” he said, waving his pistol. “Where are they?”
Beatrice frowned “they were taken by Eileen in exchange for outfitting my subordinates and me with enchanted armor.”
His frown became pronounced, ‘That could be a problem.’
“What does she want with them?”
“I know not,” Beatrice answered. “Eileen has always been fascinated with what she refers to as ‘Magitech’ and is always studying the craft along with her usual magic.”
‘That sounds more Gremlin than Lich.’
In which case he could be dealing with a Karl Heisenberg situation from RE:8.
‘Fucking cyborg Zombies or some shit.’
“Thanks for the info.”
“You are welcome, Sir Stanley.”
‘That fucking name’
“Though I am not happy with the outcome, it was a splendid battle. I am content.”
Stanley nodded and pointed the gun at her forehead.
~To Be Continued~
Author’s Notes: At this point Halloween is just a backdrop to Stanley going through the MGE version of Resident Evil and as I said before I plan to take this all the way to the end before I restart the main story. On an unrelated note I started posting the Christmas special on my Patreon at: www.Patreon.com/Streggaeworks.