Hellhound Unleashed

I have been going through the personal memoirs of Victor Valen, mostly to find clues on the nature of being human, but also to learn more about his life. This practice of writing down one's life is fascinating. It's like Victor is in the room with me, that I am more literally sharing his existence, that he lives on even after his soul has departed this world. He has inspired me to write out my own story in hopes that others may be inspired by it and that, should I be killed, maybe someone else will take up the mission to free my brothers.

My name was Narda, and I was a hound of hell in a previous life. The name means "annointed" in Latin (which I remember when it was spoken!) as I had been chosen and designated for a reason. It was my purpose to kill the sons of men and drag their souls into the lake of fire. But I was unsatisfied. I don't think I was ever aware of any such emotions in my brothers. I think after millennia of slavery for hell, the things changed after a particular event.

I remember the way the air smelled, the feeling of the dew that settled on my coat. It was early in the morning hours, still dark, the full moon choked out by a thick fog. My ears twitched at the sound of wooden wheels on pavement as they rolled hastily forward. I stood in the middle of the way as the carriage went off road to that fateful trail. My glowing eyes pierced the fog driving the horses into a frenzy. They bucked and screamed as the dumb beasts do as I descended upon them, tossing the carriage over. The family inside crawled out, the mother clutching a child. I fed on their fear. I butchered the parents without a second thought. But then I saw the little baby. Her soul was innocent; she had committed no sin. The girl cried for her mother that I had stolen from her. For the first time as I stared into her agonized eyes, I felt remorse. I stooped forward and licked the salty tears from her face. She stopped crying and bopped me on the nose with an open palm. It made me sneeze, the little hand brushing against my snout. I couldn't kill her, and I couldn't leave her to die. I tucked the infant under my arm tenderly and stalked off through the shadows. I placed her on the stairs of the church as the sun was ascending over the city skyline. And I left her, retreating into the fleeing darkness.

The little girl was given a home and a new family. When the night was warm and her window was open, I would poke my head in to watch over her. She would talk to me when she was old enough to speak. I wished so much I could respond in kind. Her name was Grace, and she called me Wolfie. She told her adoptive parents about me which they dismissed as a childhood nightmare. That's what I was, a monster to scare toddlers under their covers at night. But not to Grace. Her smile could brighten the room in the darkest night. I still remember how her small hands felt as they gripped my fur into a hug that couldn't quite encompass my neck. I remember those nights fondly.

But it seems there are other stealers of human souls than hellhounds. A plague swept through the town, and my dear Grace succumbed to the illness. Her window was kept closed, and I could only watch her behind the cold glass. She passed away not long after. I watched as her soul drifted to heaven, tears steaming from my smoldering eyes.

My role never felt right after that. Something had stirred inside me, something almost... human. I studied and observed the ways of the sons of men and coveted their free existence with the ultimate hope of heaven. I was drawn to the dying Victor Valen only recently. I had managed a way to pass my essence to his empty body. It is an amazing experience, to feel as a human does. The emotions, sensations. I have learned to speak, read, and write to some degree, though I am still learning at this point in time. In so leaving my role as a reaper of hell, I risk my life daily as I am hunted to be returned to my slavery. But I won't go back. I will try to help my brothers find the liberation I have and save humanity from their horrors.

--Victor Valen, hellhound unleashed