The dust upon the cold, smooth, stone floor scratches against my bare feet as I sneak around yet another corner in a maze that is my father's dungeons. The darkness slowly creeps into my head and messes with my imagination as what looks like one of my father's dogs, which he keeps down here as guards, turns the corner. My heart stops and stale air I quickly inhale catches in my dry throat. I huddle into a ball on the ground and close my eyes, praying to the Gods that the dog doesn't take notice of me. Something is different though. Instead of the usual sound of their claws scraping against the stone and their heavy panting, I hear little squeaks and the sound of pitter patter. I dare glance at the creature in the hall and it is nothing but a small rat, skittering along the wall. A small smile widens my dry, cracked lips as a sense of relief comes over me. As the rat turns the next corner and I steadily get back to my feet, the smile is wiped off my face and I start to worry again as a scream echoes through the halls. A scream of pure terror. Whatever is happening to that person must be truly horrifying.
Another noise comes behind me. A scraping sound... Is it an actual dog this time? Along with the scraping sound I hear a consistent, low thump. A beast emerges from the shadows with a wicked grin. All I see before I run is its mouth full of razor sharp teeth, its glowing purple eyes, and its black, cracked skin, which has streaks of blood running down it as it pours out of its cracks. With my tail between my legs I turn my back on the monster and run for my life. I'm running for what feels like a lifetime before I finally turn what must have been the hundredth corner, and see a light at the end of the hall. As I run I hear the creature still behind me, this might sound weird, but I swear it laughed. It cackled its little demon laugh and stops chasing me. I don't care why, but I think I'm about to find out. I race around the corner and stop dead in my tracks. Hanging off the walls are torches, which spread light through the corridor. I squint my eyes and at the end of the corridor I see a picture of a woman hanging from a wall adjacent to me. As I get closer I can make out small details. A woman's clothes are ripped and her hair is being pulled by a demon... Her skin is red as blood runs down her dirt encrusted skin and her ripped clothes... Suddenly I realize it's not a picture, but a window into a room where many other tortured women lay, as far as he can tell, lifeless. Their bodies are scattered all over the blood-stained floor. Several are nailed to the ceiling, their bodies forming a pentagram, and a pile of body parts is in a corner to decay.
The demon dragging the woman by the hair has dark blue skin, which has strange markings. Its eyes are a light green and its mouth full of jagged teeth also contain what looks like an endless supply of maggots. Just as I'm about to turn away from this dreadful image I notice something about the demon. Its markings move. They swirl around his body as if they're trapped there. It spots me, and stops dragging the woman, whose chest is moving up and down. This poor, mutilated woman is still alive. How can that be? She is covered in cuts, her leg lies many feet away from her, and I can see that her breasts have been severed from her body. She wants to scream out in pain, but the creature silences her with a flick of his wrist. She's not dead, but her jaw is shut, and a wire is weaving in and out of her lips, sewing them shut. "Woman, such pesky little things, but they're easier to stand. The men just always say things like 'I shall kill you' and 'Your life will end soon' and other death threats, but when I cut out their tongue they always revert back into the coward they were born as. Oh well, as long as I have someone to have fun with, right?" It says... The demon speaks. Its smile widens as it sees the look of horror on my face. "I can see you're surprised by my ability of speech. I actually don't know your language, but your ears receive what I say in my native tongue and translates it so that you understand everything I say. It's quite... Magical you could say." It laughs manically.
"What are you, foul beast?" I try to say with confidence, but it comes out as more of a whisper. He laughs again.
"What am I? I am a beautiful creature that you should be grateful to gaze upon. Go on, look at me with an awed expression upon your ugly face." He snickers, maggots fall out of his mouth and land at his feet. "You know what, Henry? I like you. I haven't had anyone to talk to in a long time. They've never made it this far." My eyes grow wide as he says my name. "How do I know your name? I know more things about you than you do about yourself. I know that in ten seconds you're going to think about how you wish you had your father's bravery right about now." He turns away for a second to look at the woman, whose lips are now completely shut, and then he looks back at me. At that moment I did think about how brave my father was and how I wish I had his bravery. "It's a game, dear boy. By simply saying that your target is going to think something they will. I planted that thought in your head. Oh, how fun it's going to be playing with you." He turns around again and grabs the girls hair again. "It would be a really good idea to scamper off right about now. This isn't going to be very pretty." He says, laughing as the woman tries to fight his grasp.
The flames on the torches around me flicker out, the air suddenly gets really heavy, and I start falling backwards. I try to scream, but nothing comes out and all I can hear is the demon's laughter.