“Listen, man,” I said, slowly moving my hand to my waist, “we don’t want any trouble.”
Dorian hissed at me. “Show some respect! He outranks me!”
I held back a laugh.
“C’mon,” I whispered to Death, “What’s the big deal? We’re two Incarnations, and a supercharged Figment.”
I stared. “Death, are you really as tough as you pretend to be? That’s twice in the past day you’ve been cowed by someone lower on the pyramid.” Death glared at me without turning his head.
“We can talk about that la-”
“Lower on the pyramid? Go ahead, try me. Whip out your implement, lets see how far you get,” the god said.
Shrugging, I drew my revolver and fired. The wall next to his head dented, and a roar rose from inside the casino. The door burst open, and a crowd of bearded, drunken southerners rushed out, blood concentrated in their heads and profanities flying every which way, only to stop short, suddenly, and look around, confusedly. Then, scratching their heads, they turned back into the bar.
“Shit,” I said, “That’s impressive. So-” I was cut off by the Lar snapping his fingers, and the bullet popping out of the wall as it it had never been there in the first place.
“I control everything in this town. Do not underestimate me because of my avatar. Do you come in peace?”
“Yes,” Death said.
“We just want to pass through,” Dorian said.
“So, why the dumpy accountant look?” I asked.
The Lar laughed. “I’m reassured. The new Luck is just smartass white trash, huh?” I started.
“Well, you see, I need to form an avatar to really be a part of this town. I am a guardian deity. I am an, I am THE Incarnation of this town. I chose someone at the heart of this town.”
“A scrawny, antisocial, D&D addict?”
“The mob’s accountant.”
“Oh,” I said, laughing, “That would do it.”
“Aha,” he said, making an attempt at fake laughter, “Now get out of my town.”
“Sure, sure, your excellency,” Dorian said, “there’s just one little problem…”
“I’ll give you a ride out. Far out.”
“Good,” Death said.
“Sweet ride,” Dorian said, “White 1967 Chevrolet Impala. They used a black version of this car in Supernatural.”
“What?” Death asked.
“Supernatural. It’s a show. A good one. Nevermind.”
“I’ve heard of it,” I said. “But, like, don’t you feel a little guilty?”
“Guilty? Coming from you?” Dorian asked, laughingly.
“That’s what I mean! Like, I’m okay with some crimes, but leaving a small town God to handle a demon invasion? Isn’t that a bit cruel? We didn’t even tell him!”
“Nope,” Death said, “That’s the life. He might be able to close it himself. If not, no skin off of our backs.”
“I agree completely,” said Dorian, “This is what life is like behind the curtain. Ruthless. He would have attacked us, tried to blackmail us if we had told him. This way, we all get to live.”
“Wow. I’m amazed by your foresight and kindness. You must be the most selfless man alive. Or, at least, what passes for alive here.”
“Or just lazy,” Death said.
“Just up, assholes,” Dorian said, miffed, “I’m a powerful Figment!”
I laughed. Death chuckled. Dorian glared.
“This works, right?” Dorian asked, pulling up outside of a funeral home.
“Oh yeah,” Death said. “I got this.”
“You know,” I said, “I could try it a-”
“No,” they said, in unison.
“Well fine.” I harrumphed. “So, let’s get this show on the road, shall we?”
“Literally,” said Death. Dorian tapped his chin.
“Now, that worries me.”
“I’m taking the car.”
“What?” I asked.
Dorian slapped his forehead. “Why, is the better question.”
“I’m currently short a pale horse, in case you haven’t noticed.”
“So you’re taking this one? How are you going to carry it around?”
“I can make it be where ever I need it to be.”
“Um… how?” Death just looked at me. “Right. Incarnation stuff. Fun.”
“It will be with this car,” he said, smiling slightly and patting the dashboard. “Now, how ‘bout we go? There’s definitely enough death around here.”
Dorian shrugged. “Sure, why not?”
Death stepped on the pedal, revving the car. “Let’s bring this baby to eighty-eight,” he said.
I stared at him as the car rolled forward. “How do you know about that?”
Death shrugged, and then we were back behind the curtain.
“Oh. Fuck.” I said, looking at the expanse of demons. “Guess they didn’t go through the gate.”
“Ya think?” Dorian asked, failing to disguise his terror.
All around the landscape were people an animals, screaming, howling, and fighting. They were covered in blood, tearing open bodies with claws, hands, teeth, and even a few weapons. On the outskirts, where we were, it was mostly animals and children fighting, with bear hands. No one was speaking, and everything was roaring and whimpering. Closer to the rock, we could see people dressed in suits, with elaborate weapons, parrying and lunging like no human could. I wasn’t sure, but I think they were taunting each other, too.
“Welcome,” Death said, “to Devil’s Rock.”
Dorian groaned. “See that guy fighting Dracul, with the bow?” I looked over. Dracul, in his immaculate suit, was using a long obsidian blade to block arrows shot from a golden bow. His opponent was dressed in rags, but was somehow surviving among the other top level combatants.
“Let me guess,” I said, “We have to go all the way up there?”
“Fun,” Death said, “Lets go kill some demons.”