On the sixty-sixth day,
the demons of the void told me they were coming. They came in fire and darkness and left me in delirium. I had seen them before, in my visions of the falling of the world. They were the ones who tore it down. They woke the nightwind. They brought madness to the hearts of men. They came from the depths of the void, the darkness the Profusion never reached, or reached to its own peril. They came more swiftly than sight. They spoke louder than sound. They shook the air. They toppled mountains. They came wreathed in the ice of comets and the fire of suns and chill of the emptiness between the stars.
I stood on a clear platform far above the world, and there was no air surrounding me, only the swirls of galaxies. They gathered around me like profane statues, nine of them semi-circling, their height making a child of me again. They did not touch the glass, but stood above it on spikes at the end of legs that were like the legs of horses. Their skin was the blackness that draws light in, the darkness of the void between the stars. Their muscles and their veins ran orange and red like the storms that leap from suns. Their bodies burned. They radiated cold, heat, cold, waves of terror and of dread. Their wings folded like the wings of bats and their arms were scimitars honed to cutting edge. They had the torsos of inhuman gods and heads like the skulls of oxen. Their horns tapered and turned to curving tips that dripped with the blood of humankind.
The one in the center nodded to me.
“You fail,” it said, each word a cacaphony of tones inside my mind. “We triumph. We endure. You are the remnants of your kind.”
I said nothing in reply. The demon turned, and raised one of its scimitars to me. Impaled upon it was my golden beloved, speared through the stomach. Her blood flowed blue and green around the cut and all of her arms hung limply at her sides. I saw that her eyes held all the hopelessness of the universe.
“Do you remember?” it asked. “Do you remember what it was like when you found her lying there?”