One hundred and five

Beleth was shifted into his most powerful form. Curling ram’s horns grew out of his forehead. His teeth were smiling fangs, his body knotted muscle. Only his height was curtailed, perhaps because of having been encased in the altar: he was little more than six feet tall. A blood-red cloak swept from his shoulders to his ankles. His feet were bare and Blue could see that each toe ended in a wicked talon. His eyes bored into hers.

Beleth shook himself as if to throw off any remnants of the porphyry block. The brass wall at his back was changing, each plate flowing liquidly into its neighbour before sliding downwards. For just the barest instant Blue wondered if the pentagram circle might contain him, but he threw back his cloak and strode towards her.

Blue took a step forward and threw herself into his arms.

‘My darling,’ she whispered breathlessly as she stretched up to kiss him.