Divine Madness

Chapter 6 Not an angel.

The flames were accompanied by screams of struggle and agony. The quiet and peaceful town of Palo Verde was now stained by tragedy and blood. The little creatures came from the forest, carrying torches in one hand and wooden clubs in the other. Without any apparent warning cry or motivation other than cruelty, the creatures began their festival of death, burning houses and killing anyone in their way.

Well, not everyone. Someone with time to pay attention would have noticed that the little creatures were only killing men regardless of age. In contrast, they only killed old women, leaving the rest alive. Unfortunately, death would have been preferable compared to what those little creatures had planned for the captured women.

The creatures, commonly known as goblins, were hated for that reason. The small but vicious creatures loved only two things in life: kill anything they came across and **** any woman they could find. Despite the hatred these little beasts had earned, they had not been eradicated. They were like a plague that reproduced too quickly and was too difficult to track.

Due to their vicious yet somewhat cowardly nature, goblin attacks weren too common. Still, the people of palo verde were the perfect prey. With no guards or fighting force to speak of but a decent population and plenty of food to plunder, the town of Palo Verde was a fat cow to the goblins waiting for them to attack.

Ana had never seen a goblin before in her life, but she had heard of them and knew that no matter what, she couldn let those things capture her daughter. What was visible beyond the window was hell itself. Besides the fire and the fights, Ana could even see some goblins dragging some of the villages women before doing unspeakable things to them.

Seeing that everything was unfolding so quickly, Ana had to make a decision. The house had no other door than the one that pointed towards the group of four goblins that kept advancing while setting the places on fire, so that was not an option. Without time to answer any of her daughters questions, Ana took her by the hand and dragged her to her room.

Alice saw the seriousness on her mothers face and heard her screams. Though she didn understand what was happening, it was painfully evident that it could only be bad. Like the obedient child that she was, Alice followed her mother without saying a word.

Ana didn even consider having a take with them before escaping; she just didn have the time. Ana dragged Alice to the window facing her houses back alley and opened it. Being very careful not to make a sound, Ana helped her daughter out the window, afraid of attracting the attention of the beasts that were ravaging her town.

Once out of it, Ana signaled Alice to keep quiet and dragged her daughter around the back of the house. Due to the houses location, there was nowhere to run to. Almost all the surrounding places had already been set on fire or would soon be. The back of the house faced open fields, which was obviously a bad idea.

Without many options, Ana could only try to cross the town, avoiding the goblins until they reached the forest side of the town.

The forest would help Ana hide with her daughter; from there, they could observe what was happening in the town. Although the forest was not very large, there was still more than enough space for mother and daughter to hide and watch from the side when the goblins returned to the forest.

Ana knew how challenging it would be to make it to the forest without being seen, but that was the only card she had left to play. Hiding in another house was nothing more than waiting for death. Trying to cross the open field was even worse than painting a target on her back, so Ana decided.

Afraid that Alices good heart might put the girl in danger, Ana warned her. ”Alice, whatever you do, don take your eyes off me, no matter what you hear or see, don take your eyes off me, do you understand? ”

Alice could only nod obediently. So, mother and daughter began to walk into the burning town. There Ana saw something worse than hell. From little boys being beaten to death by vicious creatures to girls begging while being abused, her heart died a little for every cry for help she ignored.

Although Alice didn see any of this because she was being completely obedient, not taking her gaze from her mothers back an inch, the cries of pain and pleas still reached her ears, filling her entire being with pain and helplessness.

It didn matter that Alice wasn watching what was happening. How could she not know that the people around her were going through a world of pain and agony? Tears had long since begun to fall down Alices cheeks, but the girl still kept her mouth shut and followed her mother. For the first time in her life, Alice felt deeply soiled; with every scream she ignored, some of the sparkles in her eyes were lost.

Fate was genuinely capricious with Ana and Alice since, almost miraculously, they had managed to cross half the town without being seen, but the word almost was the key.

It wasn Anas or Alices fault; nothing that was happening was in the control of either of them, but while they were both crossing an alley, they were seen by a goblin who had just turned that corner half a dozen meters away.

Ana felt her heart skip a beat in shock, but that was only the beginning of the chain of events that was about to take place. With an irritating shriek, the goblin alerted his nearby companions before advancing, swinging his club at the mother-daughter pair.

Alice would never have been able to notice, but the lustful way the goblin was looking at Alice didn escape Anas sight. It was hard if it was due to fear or a moment of sudden courage; maybe it was a bit of both, but Ana lunged at the goblin and, using all her weight, knocked him to the ground.

The goblin, unable to react when attacked by what he considered defenseless prey, was left in a daze as he fell to the ground. Ana didn have time to think about anything; she quickly took her daughters hand and ran as fast as possible.

Alice ran as fast as her legs would carry her, but she knew she was holding up her mother. The idea of ​​telling her mother that she would carry on without her crossed Alices mind, but seeing her mother, Alice knew that she would never agree.

It was there that fate was cruel for the second time. Ana could already see the edge of the forest; her target was so close to her, she just had to run a little more, and she would be safe with her daughter, so… What was that shadow?

Ana was hit on the head by a goblin who took her by surprise by jumping from a houses roof. Due to her inertia, Alice bumped into her mother and fell over her. Alice felt something warm and wet touch her face, and sheer despair filled her heart as she realized this was her mothers blood.

Why was all this happening? Alice didn know. How was she supposed to save her mother from her now? Alice didn know. This wasn supposed to be the part of the story where a powerful hero should save everyone. Why wasn anyone coming? Alice didn know. All Alice knew was that these monsters that now surrounded her and her mother wanted to hurt them.

In her desperation, Alice asked for a miracle. She wished with all her fervor that the gods would send her a blessing… but nothing happened.

Nothing but despair and disappointment filled the girls heart; a small part of her had wanted an angel to come down from heaven to save her like in the stories.

And almost as if it were an arrangement of fate, an idea came to Alices mind at that precise moment. It was nonsense that was entirely inappropriate for her current situation; Alice thought of her conversation with her mother the previous afternoon. Ana had asked what kind of magic she would have liked to have if she had awakened a grimoire. Alice responded by saying that she would wish for magic that would allow her to summon an angel.

The goblins completely surrounded Alice preparing for attack, but something happened in that second. Something that would have been insignificant if it had been someone else happened; Alice turned thirteen.

Alice felt that something within her had awakened and had been released from whatever force was holding it dormant. And to her desire to summon an angel to save her, something responded with a name: Azmodiel.

A sudden burst of light startled the goblins, forcing them back. The goblins stared fearfully at the foreign object that had burst from the chest of the beautiful human girl they were about to capture.

Alice directly ignored the sudden manifestation of her grimoire, almost as if in a trance. Alice merely reached out her hand and opened the ornate book, revealing the first page of it. A silver page appeared before her, filled with runes, symbols, and golden patterns that Alice did not understand.

Fortunately, Alice didn need to understand what was on the page, as she could instinctively use the first spell that came inside her grimoire. Forget how to use it; Alice even had a name.

”Azmodiel. ” Alice said as hope returned to her, but nothing happened.

Alice didn give up, and she spoke again. ”Azmodiel. ”

Nothing happened the second time Alice said her name, but she didn lose faith, even when she watched as the goblins lost their fear and closed in on her again. This time, gathering all of her hope, yearning, and desire to save her mother, Alice pleaded. ”Azmodiel, help me. ”

Then, time stopped, and the silver page of the grimoire disappeared. If not for the world being halted, Alice would have been terrified to see how that page that contained her last hope had vanished.

In what felt like an instant, the page returned to the grimoire, time flowing again as if nothing had happened, but something certainly did. Above the open grimoire, a fissure appeared in space. From which came a blazing heat and the sound of chains clashing. But that was not all that came out of the crack. A pair of humanoid hands clad in dark exoskeleton gripped the edges of the fissure, and soon something or someone emerged.

The heat wave and the smell of sulfur made Alice very uncomfortable, but the sight of wings spread protectively in front of her filled her heart with relief and joy. She had done it; she had summoned an angel.

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