My name?  Ugh.  Why do you want to know that?  Isn’t it enough to know that I am intelligent, charming, beautiful, capable-

Oh don’t look at me like that.  You know I’m just playing around.

Fine then Mr. Killjoy.  My name is Katarina Esmerelda Daemonova.  Try saying that three times fast.  Now whether or not that is the name I was born with makes no difference.  It is who I am now and who I have been for a long, long time.

Now the first thing you need to understand is that my species is bound by laws far older than your precious goddess, one of them being when I swear an oath I cannot break it.  And so I will swear one to you now in hopes of limiting your disbelief to the tale I am to tell.  I don’t have time to waste in trying to convince you so I swear on blood and brimstone that everything I am about to tell you about myself and the younglings is true.  And I pray to the Maker that I am not wasting my breath.

I was born here, in this city to a human female who just so happened to be the most powerful psychic of her time of which I picked up more than a few of her gifts.  But as these things go such power always comes with a cost.  For as long as I knew her my mother was bat crap crazy.  Where most psychics could filter out the ambient thoughts and emotions they picked up from other people, my mother had no such filter and was constantly barraged with foreign dialogue and feelings and as s result she frequently broke from reality and saw things considered crazy even for someone of her talents.  And from the moment I was able to comprehend the meaning of the words, she claimed my father was a demon.

She said he visited her in her sleep a night for years, courting her, seducing her, before he turned and started torturing her.  He waited for her to hate him, for her mind to snap from the strain before he raped her.  Of course at first I just this up to a standard issue case of the mommy crazies, until the night I burned our house down.

Mother never had good taste in men.  To be fair crazy never does.  She went through a steady stream of drunkards, bastards, and abusers, but the last one she had was the worst.  I’ll spare you the gory details and fast forward to the main event.  After living with the fucker for a year, he decided to crawl into bed with me one night.  I was eight years old.  I didn’t know what was happening; I only knew I wanted it to stop.

What, are you surprised by that?  Did you honestly think that my childhood was all rainbows and cupcake shitting unicorns?  Please.  You of all people know that little in this world is good, and few go through life without a few scars or tales to tell.

And if you fucking look at me like that again I’ll rip your fucking eyes out.  I don’t need your pity.  My life is just that.  Mine.  For good, bad or indifferent it’s all shaped me to who I am now and I’ll be damned if I let anyone make me feel ashamed of it.

I still don’t know exactly how it happened.  One minute I was lying naked underneath him, my eyes squeezed shut against what was happening, and the next thing I knew he had leapt off me screaming in agony, slapping at the flames that danced across his bare flesh as he flailed around the room.  I looked around for the source of the flames, and realized they were coming from me.  My flesh was on fire too, but it wasn’t burning and I felt no heat, no pain.

Even then I think things would have been okay because my bed itself wasn’t burning either, so I think it was his flailing that did it really.  He spread the flames even as he tried to put them out.  The fire spread so fast, igniting in spots everywhere as bits of burning flesh dropped off him.  I don’t think my mother woke from the stupor her latest round of anti-psychotics had put her in.  That thought comforts me at night sometimes, knowing that she didn’t wake, she didn’t suffer, she didn’t know.

My mother was unstable, psychotic, and crazy and had lousy taste in men but she tried her damnedest to be a good mom.  She fought what she heard and saw to protect me, tried every kind of drug under the sun to make the voices stop, and to this day I think she told me about my patronage in an attempt to arm me to defend myself.  I think she saw what was coming but couldn’t trust herself on whether it was real or imagined.

Everyone said it was a miracle the fire didn’t spread any farther than our house.  That I was lucky to be alive, naked and stained with soot when I was found just outside the smoldering ruins without a mark on me.  But I knew differently.  It was then that I knew that what my mother told me was true.  I was the child of a demon.

Part 2