New Mutants Unlimited 14

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New Mutants Unlimited #14
Post by Blight on Nov 13, 2006, 2:05pm

New Mutants Unlimited #14
The Devil You Don't

Cover Description: The depths of hell, with fire burning from all angles. In the center of the blaze, Mephisto stands, hugging Wreck close to him in a fatherly gesture.


The old ring of fire. How I missed you.

I knew something was amiss though, when the usual flock of demons didn't swoop in to rip out my guts as I fell. Rather, they simply watched me.

Somehow, that was far more unnerving. They stared at me in curiosity, with much the same expression as I stared at them. Stared as I fell.

I didn't land painfully for once, either. Rather, I did a graceful twirl and ended up directly on my feet. Mephisto was already there, with his back to me.

He turned to me, and in what I could only describe as the friendliest gesture I could ever imagine from a devil, bowed in welcome.

"Ah, good to see you again, Jason. Looking as well as one could hope."

I'll admit, at this point I was left completely dumbfounded.

"Yeah, you're…..looking……well too?", I stuttered. Mephisto laughed in response, but it wasn't anything like his usual demented cackling. It was almost……good natured?

"Why the long face?", he asked me, as he pointed somewhere behind me and a tall, wooden chair emerged from thin air. "Have a seat."

I took it, scratching my head.

"…..because, usually when I come here, you make a great big 'I AM SATAN, FEAR ME AND MY BIG TEETH' display. This time, you aren't. And frankly it scares me more than the dragon trick ever did."

Another laugh, still polite. I think he saw my apprehension, for he stopped in a hurry.

"Very well. Let's cut to the chase, Jason. There is a very good reason why things aren't quite the norm here. And I think it's quite time you knew what that was."

He pointed a clawed finger at me.


Silence reigned, there in the depths of a Hell which no longer seemed nightmarish. Rather, it seemed almost ridiculously serene.


Mephisto nodded. His face showed….remorse?

"You. I'm afraid this is your doing, and always has been, Jason."

No response came from me. I waited for him to continue. And then I discerned that he wasn't going to, that in fact he was waiting for me to fill in the blanks on my own.

"…….so, explain yourself," I finally relented, as those blanks weren't anywhere near being filled.

The devil smiled again, sadly. He extended his arms to the cavern around us.

"I mean exactly what I said. Dear boy, this…..Hell, as it were, is YOUR creation."

He narrowed his black eyes at me.

"I am your creation, child. To put it bluntly, you made me up."

It didn't really compute, to be honest. I was looking right at him. How…..?

"It's all in your head, Jason!", he exclaimed. "All of it! See this inferno?"

Mephisto pointed up to the blazing cave walls, snapped his fingers. Suddenly they weren't there anymore, and we were in a field of green grass.

"See those demons?"

He gestured to a group of black and winged creatures that had been milling about. Suddenly they were white, fluffy bunnies, grazing peacefully on the grass.

"You needed a way to torment yourself for your actions, Jason. And this is what you came up with. I don't know if you had some sort of religious upbringing or not. How should I know, I'm only a part of your imagination……but whatever the case, this is nothing but a psychopathic delusion you make up in your own brain every time you go through the traumatic experience of nearly dying!"

He waved his arms comically, and we were back to the inferno again. The demons that were bunnies that were demons looked to each other in confusion, then flew away, shrieking.

For my part, I could only look on, taking it all in.

And finally…..

"But you're the prince of lies," I said quietly. "This would be just the sort of thing you'd come up with, to make me think I'm not really accountable for my actions. That I'm not really damned."

Mephisto looked at me. He gave me another one of those sad, knowing smiles.

"That could very well be the case. But if it is, then why don't you try it? Try changing what you see around you. Make it whatever you like. If I'm actually Mephisto, I hold the power here, not you. So…..try it."

I paused momentarily. Then silently, I stood up from the chair.

Glancing around me, I nodded. Then I raised my hands, palms up. And slowly, ever so slowly, the cavern faded. I was back on the street at the moment the mob tried to kill me.

I remembered all of their faces, but they were different, oh yes. I saw no hatred in their eyes. Rather, they welcomed me.

"Jason, my boy, where have you been? We've been worried about you."

They…..hugged me.

And I felt a tear coming from my…..eye? Yes, my eyes. My eyes that weren't tooth filled monstrosities, but actual, normal eyes for once.

I was……cared about. Someone cared about me.

I blinked then, and the illusion faded. Back to the cavern, which wasn't a cavern anymore. Rather, it was just a nearly empty room.

Mephisto smiled. He nodded.

"Your realm, Jason. Your life. Do with it what you please."

Saying nothing, I could only return Mephisto's……or my own as it were, gesture. Then I took off into the sky. The cavern walls raced by me, and soon enough, I was back in my dorm room at the mansion.

And if from somewhere below, I noticed a soft laughter emanating from depths I dare not tread, I could not or would not hear it.

Re: New Mutants Unlimited #14
Post by K'lar on Nov 16, 2006, 1:54pm

Very cool job, Wreck. Some interesting stuff here, especially for someone who loves Mephisto (I grew up on Silver Surfer comics).

Re: New Mutants Unlimited #14
Post by Chord on Nov 17, 2006, 12:59am

Interesting, whether it was all in Wreck's head or not it was a good read.

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