Fanfic Time: Heaven, Earth and Hell, part 1

Once upon a time, someone called Quazar made a delicious six-page comic about a little fuzzy elf and a horrible, horrible situation. The remains of said comic (minus first page) can be found in the scraps section of this Deviantart account.

Quazar now prefers Enolianslave and has forgotten the rest of the original story. Meeps.

Anyway, onwards with the ficcage:

Disclaimer: The plotbunny comes from Quazar’s delicious comic… all six pages of it [waaannnnt mooooorrrre!]. Kurt Wagner and any other X-men belong to Marvel. ‘Mama’, Karl and his dad belong to Quazar… everyone else has been made up by me. Just like this has.

Warning: This is Darkfic. It’s bound to contain naughty words, sad bits, implications - if not outright gory descriptions - of abuse both verbal and physical. If the systematic torture of a young Elf bugs you, maybe you should quit now before jumping on me for writing this. Nobody’s forcing you to read any further. Trust me.

Hell, I’m only writing this because of the plotbunny currently savaging my tender portions… at least *you* have a choice ;)

                      Heaven, Earth, and Hell


  Once upon a time, there was a little boy who was the luckiest boy in the whole wide world…

  So Mama told him. It became his favourite story. How Mama had found him as a babe in swaddling, washed up on the shore of the river like Moses. How, at that moment, he had *two* Mamas… only one was far, far away and couldn’t know where he was. How, even though Mama hadn’t grown him in her body like *other* mamas did with their babies, Mama loved him beyond anything.

  It was the story that made him feel good no matter what. Even if he’d been Karl’s punching bag all day long, and Dad had been mean, and nothing had gone right… the story would make him feel better.

  Sometimes, he’d fall asleep in Mama’s arms, content to share her warmth and comfort, and it felt like such a moment could last forever.

  Except all that was gone, now.

  Mama had been sick for a very long time, and she had been getting sicker and sicker until God took pity on her and took her away to a place where no sickness could come. She’d told him that it was called Heaven, and even though it, too, was far, far away… she’d always be watching over him.

  _Whatever seperates us,_ she’d said, _remember I will always be there for you._

  And now Mama was gone. All he had of her were the memories in his head, of how she smelled and how her hands would make him feel warm all the way through. How her fingers would rub his ear as he snuggled up to her and make him purr.

  He should be happy. She wasn’t sick any more. She’d gone to Heaven, where nothing bad ever happened and you could see anything you wanted to.

  And yet he cried.

  Because he’d been left behind.

  “Told you he’d be here.” Karl’s voice.

  Kurt put the flower down, not inclined to do much else - even when Dad’s heavy footfalls came close enough to make him a little scared. He looked up and over his shoulder. Surely even someone as mean as Dad would have a tiny portion of mercy for a little boy who’d just lost the one person who meant the whole world to him.

  Dad didn’t look happy. He had a collar on a metal chain leash in one hand. The other hand reached down for him.

  Kurt cringed, wincing as Dad’s meaty hand gripped a handful of hair and lifted him up by it. It did no good to cry out. Mama wasn’t here to intervene, any more.

  “I hope you’re happy now, demon,” Dad shook him, making Kurt try to curl up against the pain. “She’s *dead*! And now you’re going to repay your debt to this family you tore apart.” The jingle of the chain. The tiny bubbles in the corner of his mouth. The *fury* in his eyes. “By serving us, in chains, for the rest of your miserable life!”

  Karl, smug smirk on his face, was the one who fastened the collar around Kurt’s neck. Just tight enough to be uncomfortable. “You’re getting it easy, freak,” he whispered. “We coulda taken your debt outta your mangy little *hide*.”

  Dad didn’t let him stand up, and Karl didn’t let him forget.

  There was a new story, now.

  The Demon Who Killed His Mama.


  His name was Kurt. He had to remember that. They called him Demon, but his name was Kurt.

  They called him lots of other things, too, but Demon tended to stick.

  “Hey, freak! Where’s my goddamn beer?”

  Kurt stretched himself, reaching for the fridge when his chain was too short to reach it properly. He barely managed to snag a bottle with his tail. The chain *would* reach Dad - he insisted on 'Sir’ now - in his comfortable chair in front of the TV.

  “Jesus… shed on it or something, next time,” Karl sneered. “You gotta get fur *everywhere* or what?”

  “Entschuldigung,” said Kurt on automatic. Then he remembered he had to speak English. “I… sorry. I have not to find my brush, yet.”

  Sir wiped his beer clean of fine blue fur and cracked the seal with his teeth. He laughed. “Listen to it. Can’t even talk proper. What a shithead. Go clean up, shithead.”

  Kurt gathered the remnants of the take-out boxes surrounding Sir’s chair, Karl’s plate, and returned with them into the kitchen. Only there could Kurt eat without fear of reprisals. Neither Sir nor Karl cared what happened to their food once they’d finished with it.

  And he was always so *hungry*.

  Kurt wasn’t allowed anything in the fridge. That’s why Sir had kept his leash short enough to barely be able to retrieve things from it. It was why Sir stood over him when there was cooking to be done.

  Heaven help him if so much as a single hair got in any food.

  “Boy, where’s the freak’s goddamn *brush*?”

  “Dunno. Din’t we sell it or somethin’?”

  Kurt winced. They’d been selling off bits and pieces of his old life, fragments of Mama, ever since they’d got him 'broken in’. First, it was the move, and that they couldn’t afford to take all the furniture with them. Nor any of Kurt’s toys. Then it was the fact that they needed money to pay for this or that. Luxuries for Karl or beer for Sir or anything in-between… but little by little, all hints that Mama had ever been a part of the family vanished.

  They even sold her medicine.

  Kurt barely managed to keep hold of his few fragments of her. The brush. A locket with her picture on one side and a thin plait of her hair on the other. A string of beads with a crucifix on it. He kept the small things in a hidden pocket in his pants. If Sir or Karl knew about them, they’d be hocked or sold by now. The brush, however, was harder to hide. It was only a matter of time before it, too, fell to the attrition that had been happening over the last few years.

  Kurt sighed and tried not to mourn. It was just a thing. It wasn’t Mama. Sure, it had helped him remember her, and the golden times when she was well… but it wasn’t all-important.

  “Better not’ve,” said Sir. “It’s the only thing that stops the demon from shedding all over the damn house. Go find it, boy.”

  Kurt ate quickly, lest he be discovered 'stuffing himself’ on 'proper food’. The last time it happened, he’d been forced to eat frozen leftovers until his belly threatened to burst. And then Sir had beaten him bloody for it. And he’d had to clean up the mess.

  He should have been grateful for what he was given. He should be thankful every day that he was allowed to live and pay off his debt. And he was.

  It was just that he was so *hungry*… it almost drove him mad.

  Stomping footfalls down the stairs made Kurt choke down the contents of his mouth and pray that he wouldn’t choke.

  “Told ya we sold it,” said Karl. “See? Here’s the hock receipt.”

  “Well go back there and *un*-hock it. It’s either that or you’re shaving the goddamn thing.”

  “Why’ve *I* gotta? It’s the freak that sheds.”

  “It’s you that had to have that gamer thing, boy. It’s you that’s gotta pay to get the fuckin’ brush back or shave the critter. Spend some more damn time an’ money on your education.”

  Karl mumbled something about his father’s ancestry as he grabbed some keys.

  “Yeh, an’ if I am, you’re one too. Asshat.”

  Kurt fumbled through his chores, not quite believing his ears. There was something they wanted to *keep*? For *him*? It was too good to be true.

  And in came Sir with his belt. “You’re in a mess of trouble, Demon.”

  Ah. It wasn’t that good after all.

  Kurt put the newly-cleaned plate in the rack to dry, and placed himself in the middle of the kitchen. So nothing would get broken. “Yes Sir,” he said.

  {Krak!} “Don’t you *dare* look at me like that!” {Krak!} “You owe me for every breath you take, you stupid freak!” {Krak!} “And how do you repay me?” {Krak!} “You fucking *shed* your dirty diseased fur all over everything in this goddamn *house*!”

  The belt flew at its own pendulum-like impetus, now. Fueled by rage that knew no true ebb. It was thirsty for his blood, today, and didn’t stop until Kurt was too weak to fend it off, any more.

  And then came the buzzing. An unfamilliar sound to his ears. Especially so close to his ears. Then, with the first fall of both blue fuzz and long indigo hair, Kurt realized what Sir was doing.

  Sir was shaving him, anyway.

  _At least he won’t be able to grab me by my hair for a while,_ he thought. _O Mama… I know you’re watching. I’m sorry. I’m trying to be good for you. I’m sorry._

  Sir roughly rode the electronic blade over his face. Kurt knew better than to flinch or fight. He tried to help as best he could, but only earned a slap for his trouble.

  The blade moved over his entire body, sending clouds of flock all over the blood already on the floor. Kurt winced when the blade crossed a fresh cut, but knew better than to put a voice to the pain he felt.

  Sir stripped Kurt’s pants off with a vicious yank, tossing them absently at the counter. “Stand still if you know what’s good for you.”

  Kurt could barely stand *up*. His muscles trembled with the effort.

  The buzzing blade *hurt* when it toured his tail, mortified him around certain areas usually concealed by underwear. Not that he actually got any of his own, any more. He was lucky to scrounge a halfway decent pair from Karl’s rejects… and Karl’s rejects were flimsy things often bound for such drudgery as cleaning engine parts.

  Finally and at last, the buzzing drone of the blade moved down his bare legs, stripping away fur and agonizing his skin. And once he was done shaving the last atom of fur from Kurt’s toes, Sir cropped the last handfuls of hair from his head.

  Karl came back, bearing the brush, and burst into raucous guffaws, pointing. “God *damn* if he isn’t blue all over!”

  Sir’s belt found his rump easily. “Blasphemy earns ya pennance, boy. *You* know what you gotta do to stay safe from this vermin.”

  Karl glared at Kurt. It was a gaze that easily plotted revenge. “Yes, Dad. I’m sorry I blasphemed.”

  “Good. Now give the critter its bath.”

  Snarled, “Yes, Dad.”

  Kurt covered himself as he followed the chain to the bathroom. The water was freezing cold and dosed with too much dettol. Karl was more than entheusiastic with the stiff brush, and took delight in holding Kurt’s head under the water until he *had* to struggle.

  It was over, and Kurt sat panting on the bathroom rug.

  Karl had a strange look in his eyes.

  “I thought you looked funny *with* the fur,” said Karl. “You’re worse than pathetic, now. Nothing more than an ugly-ass freak.”

  Kurt looked at his hands. Awkward things with only two thick fingers and a thumb. They were pale blue, now. Shorn of the fur that had made them seem so normal to him.

  Karl’s hand. So warm. So suddenly gentle. Rubbing his ear just like Mama used to. “You miss it, don’t you?”

  In spite of what he knew was happening… what he knew was going to happen… Kurt leaned into the treasured touch. Wishing it was Mama touching him.

  {zzzzzzzzzziiip…} “Yeah, freak. Show me how much you want it.”

  Kurt knew better than to fight. At least it was quicker when he didn’t fight it. Besides, Karl was bigger, stronger, and older than him. There was never any point in struggling.

  Once he was finished, those fingers became cruel again. Digging into him. “Breathe a word to Dad and I’ll feed you your own tail, got it?”

  “…'es,” Kurt managed. 

  “Now hurry up and get dried off, Demon. Dad’s waiting for you to clean up your filth in the kitchen.”

  _I’m not a demon,_ he thought. _I’m one of a kind._


  Bleach had eventually worked on the bloodstains, though he’d had to scrape off the bits where the shorn fuzz had caused it to cake. It hurt to do a lot of his usual work, and he was always cold. Blisters and boils hadn’t helped, either. Nor had the itch caused by the fur growing back in.

  During that small handful of days, both Sir and Karl had avoided the meals Kurt had had to cook for them - no matter what. They ate take-out and declared that any food he touched was automatically contaminated.

  It was the best that he’d eaten for years.

  And every night, he still prayed. Locked away in the dark of the basement, far away from the eyes of God, he prayed.

  _Take me away,_ he begged. _Take me away to Mama?_

  And God was always silent.

  Maybe God didn’t answer a demon’s prayers… no matter how good the demon tried to be. No matter how many times he wore through the rosary like Mama had shown him. Praying until his mouth was sore.

  Maybe… he deserved the silence.

  Maybe… he’d earned everything he got for making Mama sick.

  Maybe Mama had lied to him.

  _O Mama… help me?_

  But Mama was silent, too.


  His hair was starting to get in his eyes again by the time Sir was running short on money again. He’d run out of even the most pathetic pieces of Mama to sell, and that included the frames around the few existing photographs of her.

  They were now left with the painful decision of which pieces of *themselves* to sell, and they weren’t liking it one bit.

  And when they didn’t like things, Kurt got hurt.

  He nursed his wounds and listened.

  “How 'bout that old gamer thing you never touch no more? ’S gotta be worth a few bucks…”

  “It’s always *my* stuff isn’t it, Dad? How come you never want to sell your golf clubs? Or that big fish in the office? Or that computer you never use?”

  {Whack!} “Don’t sass me, boy! We need *money* and that demon-loving little *slut* didn’t leave us nothing else to sell! So start thinking, or I’ll chain *you* up, too!”

  “We could sell the freak?” Karl offered. “Or… or better? We could *rent* it! Yeah. Rent it out. That way we get money all the time. And its already broken an’ all…”

  A heart-stopping pause, in which Kurt’s hand drifted towards his hidden pocket of treasures. _Please, Mama… no?_

  “You know… all that expensive education of yours might be paying off, boy…”

  Kurt hung his head, careful to crouch in an animalistic posture, lest Sir find out about the pocket. Mama couldn’t help him. God didn’t want to. All he had was himself.

  Maybe… just maybe… he could run away?


  Celia was panting by the time she reached the pick-up where Seth and the Wagner family were waiting. Damn chemo still hadn’t worn off. It sapped her strength, even now. At least her scarf was on straight, covering any hint that she was bald.

  “Okay,” she managed between gasps. “What’s so important… it couldn’t come… to my trailer?”

  “Sorry, Celia,” said Seth. “They refuse to let it out of their sight until we sign some kind of deal.”

  Mr Wagner hit Celia with a sense of instant dislike. He was a big man who knew he was big and intimidating and made it his business to make sure that everyone else knew it, too. He didn’t keep himself at all clean and his truck showed every sign of a similar kind of neglect.

  His son simply radiated sleaze. Celia had no doubt that the nearly-grown little sociopath was the sort of kid who tortured insects for fun. He was cleaning his fingernails with a flick-knife and wore gang colours.

  Celia leaned on her cane. “Fine. Let’s see what’s under the tarp, then.”

  Mr Wagner flicked back a corner.

  It was blue. Pure, unadulterated, cerulean blue. Except for a patch of darker, longer hair at its head. Celia could pick out its ribs, and instantly catalogued the grey mottling of the fur as a clear sign of ongoing malnutrition. There were darker patches that may or may not have denoted bruising, and parallel marks here and there.

  Wagner swatted it. “Up, Demon.”

  Demon yipped and sat up. It was wearing shorts and a collar, attatched to a heavy chain. There was no other protection from the chill weather. Just the tarp.

  _Oh my God…_ it had a spade on the end of its tail. Tridactyl front paws. Feet with only two toes. The heel extended back past the hock in an odd way. But the most disturbing part was the face. At once too animalistic - and not nearly human enough.

  Demon’s yellow eyes were way too human.

  No matter where they put him, he’d earn fantastic amounts.

  And then the animal-lover inside spoke up. _We need to heal him from his neglect, first. Get him used to people._

  “How much do they want?” she said. Already, her hands were itching to reach forward.

  “One-twenty grand per annum plus ten percent off the gross.”

  “Fifty grand up top,” said Celia. “He’s going to need a lot of maintenance before we can even safely show him.”

  “Eccleston’s offered one-twenty G’s,” said the junior sleaze.

  Celia snorted. “Shyeah. Right. Eccleston’s barely *earns* one-twenty inside two years. Try another line, kid.”

  “Maybe we’ll just *work* for Eccleston’s,” said the kid. The grip on his knife switched from casual to deadly serious.

  “You do that,” she said. “Not only can they not afford extra staff, but ASPCA is following their butts twenty-four-seven. Show up there with a neglected animal and your ass is already in jail.”

  The kid dropped his voice to a whisper. “Maybe I’ll come back when you’re alone and fuck you up.”

  “Maybe you should shut up now before I call the law, kid,” suggested Seth.

  The kid looked like he’d just crapped his pants.

  Seth just grinned. “The hearing-aid just means I’m deaf. Not *daft*. Learned to lip-read ages ago.”

  Wagner rumbled, “Back in the car, *boy*.”

  The kid punched the fender on the way into the passenger seat.

  “Sixty grand,” said Wagner, briefly glaring venom at his son.

  “Fifty-one,” said Celia. “I won’t go any higher.”

  Wagner glared at Demon, who flinched away until the chain wouldn’t let him go any further. He sighed. “Fine. Fifty-one. And ten percent off the gross of any money earned.” He reached into the pick-up’s back.

  Demon flinched and whimpered.

  Wagner unhitched the chain and handed over a brush with it. “Draw up the contract. I’ll sign.”

  “This way,” said Seth, ushering him towards the office trailer.

  “What the hell do *I* do?” said Celia.

  “You’re the animal handler,” Seth called back. “Handle it.”

  _This is what you get for being a good samaritain, Cee,_ she gathered up the extra length of chain and wrapped the loops over her shoulder. “C'mon, Demon,” she cooed, patting the side of the truck. “C'mon…”

  Uncertain, the creature slunk forward.

  Celia offered her knuckles, letting him sniff. “Thaaat’s right. Good boy. *Good* boy… Gonna let Cee touch you, hm?” A tentative rub on the cheek. A cautious move to his shoulder. _Wow. He’s like living velvet._ A little more gentle coaxing and he was naturally at heel. Keeping pace with her as if it was the most natural thing in the world.

  It was amazing. No animal ever reacted like this straight off the bat. Celia rather anticipated having to climb into the trailer with him and lure him off with a succession of treats.

  Maybe someone had been nice to him before Wagner got his hands on him and Demon remembered what nice people were like.

  Whatever it was, it was a puzzle for another day.

  She was exhausted by the time she reached her trailer, and had to sit on the steps in order to catch her breath. Celia leaned on the door frame and rested her eyes. Only for a moment.

  But when she opened them again there was an ice-cold glass of milk in one hand. And no sign of anyone stopping by.


  The milk helped in refreshing her enough to get inside and take her medication. All to help her get better *after* the chemotherapy had damn near killed her. At least it had thoroughly killed the goddamn cancer. Or so the doctors reported.

  The chain was just too damn heavy, so she let it drop as she flopped into a comfortable place to sit. Demon carefully inveigled himself under her hand.

  “Affectionate critter, aren’t you?” she said. Her fingers automatically scratched and rubbed.

  Demon favoured her with a very loud, resounding, bass purr.

  “I’ll feed you soon,” she promised. “I just need… a little… rest.”

  Demon’s purring guided her into sleep.