This is something I pieced together. I came up with the idea over the weekend, and since then I've been writing it. Here you go.
I used to be afraid of the dark when I was young. As I got older I just got used to it. I mean, what else was there to do? I watched mom die from cancer when I was 7. I never knew she was sick until that night. She was a good strong woman; never compromising when the chips were down, or when something was wrong. When she had my sister, she was rushed to the delivery room, but when she got there, no doctors saw her. She gave birth to Tara all by herself, and when someone actually came in, they yelled at her, as if she fucked up. She brought it to court, and the judge ruled that she was in the right, when the doctor counter-sued for the injuries she inflicted on him. But on that night, as she lay there, all that strength was fighting a lost cause for life. She turned to me, looked into my eyes, and she said to me: “son, I’m sorry. Protect yourself. Protect your sister.” As I gazed into those baby blues, she breathed her last breath.
I soon found out that her last words had a double-meaning. She wanted me to protect myself and Tara, and I soon found out who from, because that was the first time our father laid his hands on us. As it turns out, dad was a serious addict. We never knew that. Yeah he smoked his cigars, but that was it. No, this guy was into hard drugs and hard liquor. Heroine, moonshine, kush, Canadian whiskey, cocaine, LSD, vodka: you name it, he did it. Mom was the only thing that kept him clean. Aunt Betty told me about one time when she confronted him about his addiction, and he hit her, but she didn’t blink. He threw more blows, but she stood there, heels dug into the ground. She wanted it to be known that she wasn’t afraid of him, or anyone. Like I said, she was a heluva woman. Without her, he fell back into his old habits, bringing us down with him.
“Protect yourself. Protect your sister.” Sometimes it wasn’t that bad though. There were nights it was only getting cussed out, and a back-hand across the face, but at 16, I had lost count of all the nights that the beatings were unbearable. He would grab me by the neck, repeatedly punch me in my ribcage, throw me across the room, and then kick me when I was down. Then he would stumble towards Tara. Mom’s dying words whispering in my ears, I would fight the pain, run over to her, and shield her from him. Sometimes he pried me off of her, and then start beating her, and there were times that he just gave up and either pissed on us or took a shit on us. “Protect yourself. Protect your sister.” Yes, ma’am.
When Tara was diagnosed with autism, I was twice as determined to keep her safe. Then one night, I had enough. I was sick of the abuse, sick of the drugs, sick of all of his bullshit. We made plans to run away. We pulled out a map, and marked where we would go. Tara loved the beach, and we remembered going on a vacation to Miami, so we decided to head there. Our bastard of a father overheard. As you can guess he wasn’t too happy about it. I can remember seeing her hide behind me, tears streaming down her beautiful face, and I remember thinking, “this ends now.” I told him that we were leaving, and that he could go piss off and die. He attacked me, and left me on the floor. No. I had to show this son of a bitch that I wasn’t afraid of him, just like mom did. I spat the blood out of my mouth, and struggled to stand up. After another beating, I stood up again. This time, he went off. I can still feel my bones breaking apart in the most inhuman ways, and the struggle to keep my eyes open. I was face down on the floor, his boot on the back of my head, and with one final blow, everything went black.
He had knocked me unconscious before, but this was different. I heard screaming, and agony. I felt my skin burning, but I could feel no flame. I tried to wake myself up, but I couldn’t. Then it hit me: he killed me. He killed me, and I’m in…
Before I could register where I was, I saw him. He was 7-feet tall, and fire danced at his feet. Just him being there hushed down all the screams. He was dressed in armour and chainmail, like he was a soldier in Alexander the Great’s army. He stood in front of me, eyes looking down into my very soul, and I saw his face. He looked like an average man, but you could tell that there was something about him hat wasn’t human. You could tell that he was something more powerful than you or me.
“So the flames of Tarturus have finally caught up to you.”
I didn’t know how to answer that.
“What can I say? The good die young. It’s a shame that they die at the hands of the evil though. Am I right?”
“W-what does that mean?”
“It means the innocent are found guilty.”
“OK, what does that mean?”
He gave me a dumb look. “Really, what do they teach you at those mortal schools?”
“Math, science, ELA; things that we need to know in the workplace.”
“Do you truly believe that?”
“That’s what they say.”
“I am aware. Do you believe what they tell you?”
“Good, good. It seems that you’re not completely stupid. What I mean is that you don’t belong here. You are far from sinless, but your heart isn’t evil. It is filled with anger, but not evil.”
“But I’m in hell.”
“Well, I guess you could call it that. This is only one realm of hell, but that’s too much to go into. But you don’t have to. You can be free of this place.”
I knew exactly where this was going. “You want me to sell my soul. You want me to make a deal with you like Faust No, I refuse.”
“No, no soul. I have all the souls I could ever want. This is all for you. I will give you my blessing, and you will be resurrected. The only price to pay is, every now and again, you must perform an assassination for me. Starting with your father.”
I hate to admit it, but I was tempted.
“Or not. Maybe it’s best for you to not come back. You won’t be lonely though. Your sister; her time comes. If your dear father keeps up, she’ll be dead in a week. But, that’s nothing you can prevent right?”
I groaned. “Whatever. I’ll be your assassin.”
“Really? What changed your mind?”
“Just shut up, and give me your goddamn blessing.”
"My goddamn blessing. Hmm, I like the sound of that. The god of death’s goddamn blessing. Ha ha.” With a wave of his hand, a bright light flashed.
Before I opened my eyes, I could hear him beating her. I could picture her crying and bleeding, and when I saw it actually happening, it was ten times worse than I could ever imagine. I got to my feet. My wounds were all healed, and I had more energy than ever. I snuck over to him, and grabbed him by the neck. He broke free, and put up his hands in a boxer’s stance. I was wondering where that blessing kicked in, because it didn’t feel like anything changed. I could imagine myself pulling shadows out from nowhere, and strangling him with them, and to my surprise I saw myself doing just that. I let go, and took a step back in total shock. I looked at my hands, imagining them turning to black. When they did that, it hit me that that’s how the power he gave me worked. Whatever I imagine, I can create, just like the shadows and my hands. I made a gun appear in my hands, and put the barrel to his head. I smiled as I pulled the trigger.
Tara was wild-eyed. She was shocked by the brutality, but relieved that the danger had been dealt with. I couldn’t tell if she thought of me as a saviour, or a sociopath, but she knew I was her brother. We left that night. On the road, I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders. But I knew it was replaced by another, as I felt him watch me. He would try to enslave me, but it was a risk I had to take. “Protect yourself. Protect your sister.” Her words in my head, I knew that I was being watched by her as well. I guess that was a good enough compromise…at that moment