*Crash! Rumble!* A vile power surged forth, and great amounts hellfire erupted into the sky.
The entirety of the Second Hell seemed to be roaring, rejoicing. The flames grew in intensity with the evil power, and the City of Iron seemed to come alive. The walls and ground grew hotter and hotter, even glowing orange, and the slightly translucent lava now seemed able to melt metals. Any unlucky devils swept up by this torrential force turned into torches as they fell to the ground.
Baator’s origin force welled up, welcoming its new owner.
*Hss!* The terrifying phantom of a giant serpent appeared in the sky, but was very soon covered by the dense blanket of smoke. Hell’s authority was being handed over; Leylin had now taken on Beelzebub’s role completely, becoming the new Lord of Dis!
‘The Second Hell is now my divine kingdom.’ Leylin felt an extreme amount of power here, one that he could activate at any time. His eyes sparkled with excitement.
‘Although I’m still a demigod, I can now use my powers as a rank 7 Warlock. I needn’t even be afraid of greater gods anymore. More importantly, now that I’m the true Lord of Dis my power is similar to that of a divine kingdom…’
Every Archdevil was the Lord of a different layer of Baator. In their own hells these lords could even suppress gods, a power akin to what true deities held inside their divine kingdoms. Were a greater god to enter Dis right now, Leylin could make them suffer a huge loss.
‘But still, this is just one level of Baator. The relationship between me and Dis isn’t as intimate as that of a true god and their divine kingdom either, and there’s no way to bring my worshippers’ souls here…’ Leylin did not wish for his worshippers to enter Baator after death, becoming lower devils.
‘However… I’m sure this incident exposed my status to the remaining Archdevils…’ He seemed to smile as he looked down, his gaze piercing through the numerous hells all the way to Nessus…
“The authority over Dis has been transferred, a new lord has been born… But it doesn’t seem to be a devil.” ”Within Malsheem, Asmodeus sat facing three other Lords of Baator. His expression remained gentle, masking his true intentions.
“Damn it! Somebody actually took advantage of our infighting… We’ll become a joke to those demons of the abyss… I’ll go there and kill him now! Before he is completely familiar with his authority!” Samuel’s body blazed with heat as he howled and flew up into the sky.
“Please wait. You cannot leave until the contract is fulfilled.” Asmodeus waved his hands, and the contractual power immediately stopped Samuel from going further.
“What’s happening? Wasn’t the contract supposed to expire when Dis gained a new lord?” Samuel looked at the binding power of the contract, his face incomparably dark. He sensed that Asmodeus had made him a pawn in his game.
“Asmodeus! Explain yourself!” The Lords of Avarice Wrath roared, their figures pressing towards Asmodeus.
“Hehe. Everything is stipulated within the contract. Haven’t we discussed this already?” Asmodeus tapped the black book containing the contract in a slow and unassuming manner, “Let us see…”
*Rustle!* The pages flipped under his control, until finally landing on the most recent contract.
“The contract says that we have to remain here until Baator has regained peace. None of the lords may participate, only allowed to watch the developments…” Asmodeus used his pointed fingernails to touch the words, and a dark green flame spewed from them to form a projection in the air. He enlarged it so the remaining lords could have a closer look.
“We agreed on all of Baator. That is to say, as long as at least one of the Nine Hells is in chaos the contract remains valid. “ Asmodeus smirked as he faced the furious gazes of the other lords head on.
“So Dis wasn’t your only target. You also made plans on Avernus?” Mammon grabbed his harpoon, but didn’t act immediately. He was after all of the lawful alignment, and even as an Archdevil contracts were firm and unbreakable. Were he to breach one, Baator’s will would view him with disdain, forever robbing him of part of his power.
“I still say the same thing. Let us wait and see.” Asmodeus still had that genteel smile one him, but now it spoke volumes.
First Hell of Baator.
A large army of devils had assembled under the lead of a smaller scarred pit fiend. Centred at the Bronze Citadel, they’d already occupied a third of Avernus. The only regions left were treacherous, or part of the two divine kingdoms in this hell.
The pit fiend finally stopped his army outside the realm of the Shark God Sahuagin. A sharkman cleric walked out, his face extremely solemn. He was followed by other worshippers as well as a squad of elites.
“As per the agreement, this will be our new boundary,” the cleric said solemnly.
“Of course. Lord Asmodeus is extremely thankful for Sahuagin’s help, and he sends his blessings and friendship!” The pit fiend spoke in a well-mannered tone.
“Don’t forget your promise. Bring us the items agreed to in the contract immediately!” the cleric reminded the pit fiend once again…
“It’s finally settled…” The pit fiend heaved a sigh of relief after looking at the newly demarcated area, having an erinyes pour a cup of red wine.
“A third of Avernus,” the pit fiend muttered, “that should be enough to make the lord happy. If his plan comes to fruition, we of Nessus will be able to unite all of Baator. The council of eight Archdevils will become a thing of the past, and I’ll have paved the way for the future!”
However, energy rippled out from Dis at that moment. It notified the Nine Hells of the changes in the second.
Being the First Hell, Avernus experienced the ripples of energy most strongly. The extreme change, coupled with the rejoicing of Baator’s origin force, caused the pit fiend’s expression to change drastically. The glass holding the wine crashed to the ground, shattering with a crisp sound.
“The devils in the second level have failed… Those useless fellows, I have should reduced all of them into lesser devils...No, bugs!” After venting his frustration, the pit fiend could only dismiss his troops helplessly.
Before he left, the pit fiend cast his gaze deeper into hell. “Even if there were changes in Dis, the little miss will still be alright. Our lord still holds the upper hand!”
Sixth Hell, Malbolge.
This was an endless realm of mountains and valleys. The terrain was rocky, and boulders constantly fell from above that were so strong they could smash anything in their path to smithereens. The sky rippled with ever-changing clouds.
In this vile environment the devils could only take shelter within their copper fortresses, although even then many perished to the steep slopes and frequent landslides.
Rumours were abound that underneath this rocky surface were numerous holes, holding some ancient beings of Baator and primordial devils within them. However, the Hag Countess, the current lord, had sent men to search these areas to no avail. They all ended up dead.
The Countess was a night hag, an outsider to Baator. Her fortress was at the centre of a giant mountain, surrounded by lava.
The devils were rising up in this area that day, a common sight in Baator. With the hardships their superiors put them through, these devils often took great pain to finish their missions, at the same time frenetically searching for their masters’ weaknesses. Once any weaknesses or loopholes in contracts were discovered, a bout of unrest would begin.
However, the Hag Countess was one of the Lords of Baator. She’d seldom received any challenges of the sort, and back in the past no devil had been foolish enough to challenge the might of a lord.
However, an exception was made today. The dusty gates of her palace were forced open, and many devils equipped with heavy armour followed a beautiful erinyes inside. The erinyes looked at the rotting night hag on the throne in front of her, eyes blazing.
“Hag Countess, your reign will end today!” The erinyes had unbelievable strength and beauty. Her body possessed a fatal charm that could intoxicate the devils nearby. Yet at this moment, she tossed the head of a pit fiend towards the foot of the throne, putting on a proud and icy demeanour.
“Hahaha… So it’s Glasya, the little princess of Nessus… I was wondering which devil would have this audacity…”
The betrayal of her subjects and the death of her guards should have been extremely dangerous to her, but the Countess did not look fazed in the slightest. She looked mockingly at Glasya, her withered finger pointing at the erinyes as she spoke in a hoarse and raspy voice, “Do you really believe you can overthrow me with this bunch of trash? This is Baator, not the abyss. Without the power of laws, you cannot usurp my authority!”
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