Copyright © 2013-2017 Lydian Press Terms and Conditions Privacy Statement Submissions Contact Us Jimi Goninan

Gabriel Dieudonné stirred in his king-sized bed, before blearily opening his eyes. Stretching out, he relished the feel of the red satin sheets sliding against his naked skin. As he turned over, Gabriel expected to come into contact with his husband’s powerfully built form, but realized that he was alone in the bed when his hands encountered nothing but air.

Where did he get to this morning?

His body still ached in a pleasant reminder of the exquisite torture he’d received at the hands of his Lord and Master – as his husband affectionately liked to be called – the night before. His ass had taken the brunt of the punishment, being ridden for hours without mercy…not that Gabriel ever complained. Squeezing his ass muscles together, he got an agreeable reminder of a job well done. The temperature in the room was satisfyingly warm, as always, and the air felt thick with just the merest chemical hint about it – it was reassuringly familiar.

Throwing off the sheet, Gabriel looked up at his reflection in the mirrored ceiling – his husband’s decorating tastes – and was satisfied with what he saw.

Vanity, thy name is Gabriel.

In his defense, Gabriel was quite a sight to behold. His smooth body was bronzed and honed to perfection, and his tousled dirty blond hair and cornflower blue eyes made for an arresting combination. His manhood was erect and at its full eight inches, as was usually the case when he awoke of a morning. Indeed, he was in the best shape of his life and looked far younger than his true age – a closely guarded secret.

Getting out of bed, Gabriel walked over to the window and threw back the heavy black velvet curtains, which allowed a warm red light to spill into the room. It was a view he’d grown quite fond of over the years, although he knew others often found it rather unpleasant. Looking out, he could see the ochre-colored rock walls of a seemingly bottomless crevasse. Along the sides, a multitude of doors ran in a series of lines, each belonging to a cell. The number of cells increased on a daily basis, as an unending stream of new prisoners came from above. Behind each door, laid a personally-tailored, private hell. Constant cries of misery, blended together into a white noise of anguish and despair that was barely audible through the thickness of the glass.

When he’d first arrived, Gabriel was stunned by just who’d qualified for eternal damnation. Naturally, there was an over-abundance of lawyers and politicians, but far from being the domain of sodomites and whores, the place was populated with fine upstanding people with nasty secrets. All of them well-deserving of the punishment they were to receive for time without end, although the memory of their treatment was erased on a regular basis and restarted, as human minds tended to come apart after a decade or so of unrelenting suffering.

Sighing, Gabriel absentmindedly twirled his heavy platinum wedding ring about his finger.

Now, where on earth is my husband?

It wasn’t always easy being married to the Devil.

* * *

Truthfully, it had come as something of a surprise to Gabriel that he’d actually ended up in Hell – mostly because he’d convinced himself that it didn’t exist. Even though Reverend Solomon Jones, the fiery preacher of Gabriel’s hometown, had done his level best to persuade him, and the rest of his congregation, otherwise. The preacher was very much of the fire and brimstone ilk, apparently convinced that without his stern moral guidance, everyone was going to Hell, in particular, those men who committed the most egregious sin of all – loving another man.

“Sodomites shall burn for all eternity, their putrid flesh melting from their bones, their torment never-ending,” thundered Reverend Jones, at least once a week.

His Sunday school sermons were even more disturbing, given that they were delivered directly to children. Growing up, it’d been Gabriel’s most dreaded time of the week, being terrorized straight after church, for a full one and a half hours. To make matters worse, Reverend Jones was rather liberal with the use of his long wooden cane, which he used to rap the hands and buttocks of those children he deemed sinful that week…it was rare that anybody escaped his attention for long.

I don’t see why God wants him to hurt children. Sometimes it seems as if he kinda enjoys it.

Gabriel received more than a handful of cruel blows from the cane during his childhood, as did the majority of his friends and classmates. Thankfully, that had ended in his mid-teens, once attendance became optional.

During his time in the small Midwest town of Chestnut Hollow, Gabriel had successfully kept his forbidden desires well hidden. Confining it to furtive masturbation fantasies late at night when his parents were fast asleep. It wasn’t that he had no attraction to women, indeed, he’d even had a few wet dreams about some of the cheerleaders, but his carnal yearnings were much stronger toward the male of the species. One specimen in particular caught his attention early on – Andrew Madison, the captain of the football team and the object of lust for a good many of his peers. He was the very picture of the All-American boy next door with chestnut curls, green eyes and a killer smile. Gabriel had lost count of how many times he’d spilt his seed thinking of what he and the strapping footballer might get up to in the locker room after a big game. In fact, it was the only reason that Gabriel had bothered attending the games, although he and Andrew had barely ever had a conversation.

To his great relief, no one appeared to suspect Gabriel’s true nature, but that didn’t stop the good reverend from paying Gabriel a special visit before his departure and haranguing him for over two hours on the evils of city life.

“They’re full of degenerates, criminals and whores, all there to tempt you into their perverted ways,” lectured Reverend Jones. “They’ll turn even the most clean-living, god-fearing man into a depraved abomination. Personally, I think your parents are damned fools for allowing you to leave. May God have mercy on your soul.”

As if I didn’t already feel guilty enough.

It was fortunate indeed that his parents were more open-minded than the preacher, both having travelled outside into the big, bright world; before they’d settled down to have a family. It helped that his father’s family hailed from France a few generations back, so traveling was in their blood. To be fair, there wasn’t much of a future in Chestnut Hollow for anyone not agriculturally minded.

“You take care now, son,” counseled his father, Patrick, an older-looking version of Gabriel with the start of a middle-age spread. “Remember, we’re always here if you need us.”

“Make us proud, my darling boy,” said his mother, Roberta, a kind-featured buxom woman, with a beautiful mane of auburn tresses. “I just know you’re going to be a star!”

With his parents’ blessing, Gabriel had left as soon as he was of age and moved to New York with stars in his eyes. He was something of a timid lad as a child, but once Gabriel took to the stage he discovered that he could lose himself in the different characters and his insecurities fell away. For the first time he felt noticed and truly alive. Of course, he often reverted back to his shy state when out of the spotlight.

By the end of high school, he’d managed to come out of his shell and had grown quite popular. Even Andrew had a smile and a wave for him on occasion, although unlike an uplifting teen film there was no magic moment when the broad-shouldered quarterback realized that Gabriel was the love of his life and they ran off happily together. Instead, Andrew knocked up his cheerleader girlfriend, Sandy, and a hasty marriage ensued just after graduation.

So much for that, then.

Gabriel left soon afterwards, his head full of dreams and his heart full of hope. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out quite as planned. While he’d been the star of high school and community theatre productions, once in the big city, Gabriel soon found that he was just one of many desperate for fame and fortune. After graduating from the drama program at the University of Columbia, he was bursting with expectation and pluck. Sadly, years of auditions that tended to go nowhere meant that his part-time job waiting tables slowly became his profession. The only success he’d had was a small role with a touring company production of Macbeth. It’d lasted about four months and was generally well attended but nothing more had come of it.

In his darker moments, Gabriel thought about giving up on his aspirations and returning home to Chestnut Hollow, but that felt like a failure he couldn’t face. Besides, he knew in his heart that a small-town life would be the end of him.

A fate worse than death.

At a loss and unsure of which path he should take, Gabriel couldn’t see a way forward. Of course, that was before he’d met Lucifer.

Scared Stiff

Excerpt:

Ebook ISBN 978-1-911478-22-5 Cover Price: $4.99

Print ISBN 978-1-911478-23-2 Cover Price: $11.99

Length: 274 pdf Pages / 52224 words

Gay Fiction, Supernatural, Romance,

Heat rating: 4