Chapter 3:



Before the pain could even set in, I found myself lying on the ground in the alleyway. There weren’t any corpses here now. Did that girl move them?

“I’m surprised you passed out,” a feminine voice said. It was that girl again. She was still here? What happened to my eye? I can see just fine, right? “Most people handle shock better.”

“Shock?!” I shouted back. “You stabbed me in the eye!”

“No, I didn’t.” She replied stubbornly. “All I did was open it.”

“What do you mean?”

I sat up to see the girl sitting atop a dumpster. Were the bodies in there? Was she going to kill me? What did she do to my eye?

“Humans have a difficult time seeing past their own nose,” she said. “I fixed that for you.”

“What are you talking about, who are you?”

“I am a demon; a fallen angel, one could say,” she replied, “and you happen to be my master now, young sorcerer.”

[ Demon’s//Jury | Chapter 3: Self-Proclaimed//Demon ]

Okay, that’s it. I’m out of here. I stood up hurriedly and bolted to leave the alleyway. I turned a right corner and began dashing back to my house. The VR headset will have to wait.

I only got a few feet away from the alley when I felt a hand on my shoulder. I immediately jerked away from it, fell to the ground, and started screaming. Did she catch me? I was a goner now, wasn’t I?

“Relax, moron,” she said in an apathetic tone. “All you’re doing right now is making yourself look like a schizophrenic.”

“Get away from me, please!” I peeked my eyes through my arms to see the girl standing above me with her hands at her sides.

“At this point, I would do that if I could.”


“Demons aren’t capable of manifesting in the physical world without a human soul. If I left your general vicinity, I wouldn’t be able to find you again.” She explained. “I suppose you could banish me if you really wanted to, but that’s only because the terms of our contract lean heavily in your favor.”

“Contract, what contract?”

“You saved me from those two brutish thugs in the alleyway, remember?”

“You killed those people! I saw you slice that guy’s head in half!”

“I couldn’t have done that without you though.”

I gave the girl a look up and down. Her pink hair and piercing golden eyes made her instantly recognizable and gave her an almost otherworldly presence. She was dressed modestly, at least for this day and age, and she bore a white ribbon in her hair that caught itself in the wind. Her ribbon was almost like a weathervane, actually.

“Great,” she mumbled loudly as she turned her face away, “now I get stuck with this loser until he kicks the bucket. This is what I get for trying to trick someone into letting me manifest.”

“You tricked me?!” I stood up. “What did you do?! Did you steal my soul or something, demon?!”

“Not exactly,” The girl answered. “See, I didn’t know exactly how a contract like this was going to work. It doesn’t seem like I can possess you or anything, and nobody but you can see me right now.”

“How do you know that?”


The girl then walked over to a random stranger and waved her hand in front of him. He was a young man dressed in casual clothes. The passerby didn’t seem to notice the girl at all, like she wasn’t even there.

“See!” She shouted. “I told you!” The girl then proceeded to put her hand on the young man’s shoulder.

“W-Where the hell did you come from?!” He shouted. “How’d you sneak up on me like that?”

The girl shot him a death glare as her hand rested on his shoulder. “You saw nothing,” she said. The young man’s expression turned from surprise to concern as he gently released himself from her grip and ran away.

“What were you saying about being invisible?” I asked smugly.

“I never said invisible!” The girl snapped back at me. “Normal people can’t notice demons at all, but that doesn’t mean I’m not there. It seems like touching someone can get their attention, which means I must be partially manifested, not fully.”

“You’re talking a lot of nonsense,” I replied. “Why did you kill those men back there and where did their bodies go?”

“I didn’t kill them.”

“You’re lying.”

“Those ‘two men’ you’re talking about were demons. D-E-M-O-Ns. The actual people whose bodies they were inhabiting are completely fine, if a little mentally scarred.”

“I saw you cut one of them in half!”

“Look, you know how humans are only able to perceive into the present, right?” The girl asked.


“Demons aren’t bound by those kinds of rules. When I killed them, it was in the future, which means it didn’t happen.”

“Then what about the ‘demons’?”

“Demons can’t be permanently killed at all, not by a normal human, or even by another demon. If a demon’s physical body is destroyed, they get ‘sent back to hell’ metaphorically speaking.”


“Do you really want me to explain all of this crazy metaphysics bullshit to you?”

“Uh… actually I kind of would.”

“You have to go somewhere, right?”


“I can explain it to you on the way if you don’t try to run the second I turn my back.”

[ cut ]

“This smart guy in the 1700s named Pierre-Simon de Laplace came up with a theory that the present is a collection of the effects of the past and the cause of the future. Thus, if an entity could calculate the future using the knowledge of the smallest atom to the largest celestial bodies, that entity could perfectly know both the future and the past. While he never came up with the word ‘demon’ to describe an entity that could do this, he would have been pretty much on the nail if he had, and later philosophers even used that term to describe this theoretical entity. Demons can exist in both the present and the future since their perception of the now is perfect rather than flawed. However, this means that if two demons exist within the same time, regardless of whether that is the present or the future, they can harm and banish one-another.”

“How exactly does that work in practice? Why did I see those two guys die then?”

“A normal human doesn’t stand a chance against a demon because the past, to them at least, is immutable. Demons in the future can simply retry from the beginning if they make a mistake, since none of what they’ve seen has actually happened yet. When I was talking about opening your eyes, what I means was that I gave you one of mine.”

I looked over towards a nearby window to check if she was telling the truth. There was sort of a flickering light I could see within one of my eyes, but it didn’t look like much other than a reflected sunbeam.

“Why would you do that?”

“Because” the girl sighed as she took a seat on a short stone wall behind her, “I owe you a life debt, technically speaking. This kind of exchange is common among demons and sorcerers.”

“What does sorcerer mean, anyway? Why have you been calling me some kind of wizard?”

“It’s a term commonly used by ‘normal people’ to describe someone who has a pact with a demon. Other terms might include warlock, witch, or magician. They all mean roughly the same thing, but they have different specific connotations. Sorcerer, or mage, is the least specific. The reason I use sorcerer is because ‘mage’ sounds stupid.”

“So does that mean I get some kind of magic?”

“What gives you that idea?”

“I don’t know… Nothing, I guess…”

“Some demons have different powers than others. Unfortunately, I can’t give you what most humans would consider magic. You’ll have to go to one of the big shots with a lot of worshippers or get lucky with an unmanifested demon if you want something like that.”

“You don’t seem to be a very ‘good’ demon, are you broken or something?”

“Uh…” The girl paused for a moment. “Yeah, I guess I am.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“I don’t have any of my memories from the time I spent before manifesting.”

“What does that mean?”

“Most demons are able to recall past events perfectly, I don’t remember any of them.”

“So how do you know that you’re a demon then? How do you know that you’re not some human with brain damage?”

“I… I just know, I guess.”

“Do you have a name or am I just going to have to call you ‘demon’ from now on?”

“No, I don’t remember my name. Not that I would give it to some random human.” The girl pouted and turned her back towards me.

“Hey, I’m your master, aren’t I? Turn around and tell me your name!”

The girl immediately pivoted to face me and said: “I don’t know!” before an infuriated look painted across her face. “How did you-”

“I thought that might work.”

“If you want to call me by a name then give me one!”

“Uh…” I stuttered for a moment. “No… Name… No… E… Noe. That’s your name from now on. Noe.”

[ cut ]