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Surprise A/R fic! I'm trying to set up a separate journal just for my writing, and while going through fics on my hard drive, I found some Asmodeus/Raphael that I wrote in April '09 but forgot to post online. It's a rework of a crappy A/R fic I did back in 2005 called "Alleluia". Soooo old! *shudder*

Anyway, this time around I've fleshed the story out and spread it into three parts. So before I go to bed, here's Part 1 now, and when I wake up tomorrow, I'll proofread and then post part 2. Part 3 will be a rewrite of the original 2005 fic; that bit still needs some work, but it's almost done.

Title: An Easter Story – Part I: An Apostles' Creed Remix
Fandom: the Bible
Pairing: cryptically implied Asmodeus/Raphael, very mild Leviathan/Asmodeus
Rating: PG
Summary: After he died on the cross, Jesus went down to Hell to rescue the souls of the righteous and take them to Heaven.
Notes: Time period set around 33 AD.

"I believe in Jesus Christ [...who] suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. On the third day he rose again." –from the Apostles' Creed


The ceiling of Lucifer's throne room soared high, bolstered by curving, obsidian supports. The whole grand hall was black stone from the walls to the central dais where the Devil's gilded throne sat. Looking like a cross between a subterranean cave and a blasphemous temple, the room awed even the most stoic of Lucifer's minions. However, now the magnificent hall was empty save for Lucifer and four of his seven Archdemons: Beelzebub, Asmodeus, Astaroth, and Leviathan.

And the Son of God standing before Lucifer's throne.

Jesus glanced from the Devil to his cacophony of demons and back again. "Ahem, hello. I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Through my Father's plan and my sacrifice, the gates of Heaven have been opened again to humanity. So if you'll permit me...uhm..."

"And why bother with such trivialities?" Astaroth hissed, the first of them to speak. "Just do what you came for. It's not as though we can stop you," the demon added, haughty tone trying to mask his hurt pride.

Jesus ignored Astaroth's taunting and instead turned back to Lucifer. "Morningstar?"

The Lord of Hell fixed the Son of God with a look of pure loathing. "Go away. Just take your miserable righteous souls and go the fuck away."

The Son of God came closer to the dais until he was standing right in front of Lucifer. "Morningstar," Jesus said gently, sadly, as he reached out to touch Lucifer's face.

The demon's eyes narrowed, and his face stretched, skin splitting as he hissed at the other being. Lucifer's fangs and jawbone elongated grotesquely and his forked tongue flickered twice before his face snapped back to its previous beautiful—albeit unhappy—countenance.

Christ drew back though he seemed bewildered rather than frightened.

"You won, we lost, haha. Now what part of 'go away' are you having trouble with?" Asmodeus snapped bitterly.

Jesus sighed. "No civil word from you either, Cherub? I had hoped—"

"Hope. That's your problem right there," the Archdemon of Lust retorted with a soft growl.

Asmodeus insolently met the Lord's brown eyes, but after a few moments, he was forced to look away. As the demon stared holes into the smooth marble floor, he could still feel Christ's eyes on him. It was as if the Son was trying to read his mind. In all likelihood, He probably could. Under that scrutiny, a tight, pained feeling bloomed in Asmodeus's chest and coiled around his heart in what felt entirely too much like shame.

Jesus smiled thoughtfully and ran his fingers through Asmodeus's black hair in what was unmistakably a gesture of friendly affection. The demon was too stunned to pull away, and the Savior leaned close, speaking so that only Asmodeus could hear him. "You are cruel towards him now, but some time many centuries later, you may be inclined to show more gentleness," the Son whispered cryptically. "And if that time comes, his willingness may surprise you in turn."

"Stop it!" Lucifer commanded, shoving Jesus back and moving quickly to stand between the Archdemon and the Savior. "Don't you dare lay hands on him!"

The Son of God shook his head. "No, you misunderstand, I have not harmed him—"

"Get out! GET OUT! Get out before I throw you out!"

"Lucifer, we both know you don't have that power right now," Jesus replied sternly.

The Lord of Hell stalked up to his unwelcome guest, hellfire materializing in his clawed hands. "Your power here is not absolute!" Lucifer jabbed an accusatory finger at Jesus's chest, and purple flames burned a small hole in Christ's shirt but left his skin unmarred. "You've come for the souls of the just, now get them. Don't tarry."

Jesus bowed his head. "As you wish." There was an echoing boom as he disappeared in a flash of light that swept out of the palace and through Hell in an instant, carrying the righteous up to Heaven. Back in the throne room, a smoldering crater was the only thing left to mark the Savior's departure. Lucifer resolved to have the floor repaired as soon as physically possible. In fact he was already considering redoing the whole room altogether just to scour this moment from his mind.

"Beelzebub, go contact the rest of the Dukes," Lucifer said tiredly, collapsing back onto his thrown. "I want to know how many souls he took with him."

"Yes, my Lord." Beelzebub's robe swished softly around his ankles as he walked quickly from the throne room.

Astaroth shook his head, his long scarlet hair shimmering. "I do not like Him," he hissed, glaring at the cracked floor where Jesus had last stood.

"Nor do I," Lucifer replied caustically. "At least that's one thing that we can agree on. Anyway you're free to go, Lord Astaroth. And as soon as you are able, tell Beelzebub how many souls the 6th Circle has lost."

Astaroth gave a curt nod, no bow, and silently exited the chambers.

"Asmodeus," the Devil called, his voice softening as he turned to his friend, "are you alright?"

"F-fine."

"Color me unconvinced," the blonde demon retorted, a hint of his old smirk returning.

Leviathan slithered over to her fellow marquis and drew him into a protective embrace. Asmodeus still seemed so shocked that he didn't even protest the coddling treatment. The shadow master was uncharacteristically subdued, his garnet eyes vacant. "I'll have him lie down, Lord Lucifer," Leviathan assured the Devil. Lucifer nodded, dismissing the pair.

Leviathan wasted no time taking Asmodeus to her guest room in Lucifer's palace. Careful but insistent, she pushed him down onto the turquoise coverlet draped over her bed. Offering no resistance, Asmodeus let her arrange him as she liked, looking up and vaguely noting that the lower ceiling was oddly comforting.

Her hand still entwined with her friend's, Leviathan knelt by the bed and asked, "What did he say to you?"

"I-I...don't remember."

Yellow eyes widened, but the Marquise fought to hide her annoyance. "Don't even try that with me—"

"No, really, I don't know!" Asmodeus protested, finally starting to sound lucid again. "It was something about... It was something about something."

Leviathan blinked in surprise. "Truly, you don't know?"

Asmodeus meekly shook his head.

"Oh. Well it was probably nothing of great importance then," Leviathan suggested trying for nonchalance, and the smile she offered actually managed to be reassuring. "Come rest now, brother Asmodeus. You still seem shaken."

"Thank you, I think I will..." the other Archdemon replied as he closed his eyes.

tbc...


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