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Sex and Sanctityby: Vanessa Singer
Ten years ago
His breathing labored, Monsignor Patrick Gomez raced down the dark halls of St. Francis Hospital. In one hand, he carried a small leather bag. In the other, he silently kept track of the prayers which had begun after he had received the call. A panicked call from a very good friend. As he reached the fourth floor of the facility, he saw Penny Jenkins pacing along the center of the hall. To her left, a thick metal door, secured by six locks, shook with the sounds of screams.
"Thank God youre here, Monsignor "
Penny raced to the black-haired man and hugged him tightly. Her mascara had run, leaving a dark smudge across his purple shawl. He rested his powerful hands on her shoulders and tried to calm the pudgy young woman with the strawberry blonde hair.
"I came as soon as I heard, Penny. Please, tell me what happened."
Penny sat down on a small plastic chair, and stared at the formidable door across the hall.
"I tried to stop him. I told him to wait, but he wouldnt listen. Daniel said that it had to be done now, and that he could do it."
Monsignor Gomez shook his head sadly, crossing himself as Penny continued.
"He went to the house. He confronted her. I followed him, because I thought I might be able to help, but we got separated. He went into the bedroom with her. You dont know what was in that house. The bodies it was unholy "
"I know, Penny."
As the Monsignor stood there, a horrific scream tore through the metal door, chilling both of them to the bone. Behind that door was his worst nightmare. It was a possibility in any case like this, but to have it actually occur was a rarity. Penny wiped her eyes and continued her story.
"I could hear him inside the room, trying to cast the demon out. It was no use, Patrick it was so powerful. It it consumed him. He had so much faith and it shattered him like a twig "
More screams echoed through the hallway and Patrick Gomez knew it was time to act. Gathering his courage and his faith, he quickly unlocked the door and opened it. Slipping inside quickly, he closed the door behind him and listened as Penny did what had to be done. One by one, the six locks were sealed again. The tiny room behind the door had an unholy stench. It contained only a single bed with a number of thick leather straps bolted to its frame. The straps were worn and under tremendous stress as they tried to contain the struggling creature.
Dressed in shredded black garments, a young woman with fiery red eyes and wavy blonde hair lay there, desperate to escape. Her entire body had been streaked with blood, and she howled like a beast. Pungent odors filled the room as the priest saw strange stains had been sprayed upon the walls. Organic fluids. As she saw the Monsignor entering, she grinned evilly.
"Hiya, Patty. Mmmmm, you look pretty good for an old guy." The woman sneered, raising her ass to present herself to the senior cleric. It was bare, exposing both her buttocks and vagina shamelessly.
Patrick crossed himself again, listening to the sarcastic tone of the womans smooth, sultry voice. All victims did not sound like Linda Blair in "the Exorcist," although some would argue that the film covered a textbook case of demonic possession. But, that demon was nothing like the one that lay twisted before him. This demon was a creature not of pure evil, but of pure lust.
"Im afraid your little pal bit off more than he could chew, Patty. I had to show him what real power was." The woman smiled, revealing bloodstained teeth. Her eyes moved around the room playfully. "Im sorry if things look a little different, but I just had to do a little redecorating..."
"I will succeed where he failed, creature "
The Monsignor opened his bag and pulled out an ancient wooden cross. The woman laughed for a moment, but her amusement soon gave way to caution. There was something wrong here.
"You did not expect this, did you, demon? You thought we had no more methods that could defeat you. But, you have yet to truly feel the power of Almighty God "
The Monsignor held the cross up. It was two shattered pieces of wood, held together a spiral of the petrified vines. The demon could feel the energy flowing from the man, amplified by the strange talisman and crashing into her. She recognized the power of that instrument, assembled in the eleventh century from a relic most men thought lost forever. It acted like a lens, focusing the mans incredible faith into a weapon which could truly harm her. Her lips pulled back into a fearsome sneer, spitting blood and saliva across her chest.
"No. Fuck you, old man, Im not going anywhere!!!"
Penny Jenkins waited, trying not to listen to the sounds seeping from behind the door. The battle lasted nearly six hours, and the sounds simply stopped. She felt nothing but dead silence as she walked over to the door and slowly turned the first key.
Inside, Monsignor Patrick Gomez lay dead on the floor, the ancient talisman resting on the floor next to him. A look of determination was etched forever across his washed out face. Penny looked at the bed and saw the young woman laying there. The bulky straps holding her to the bed were shattered, allowing her to cover her face with bloodstained hands. The only sound Penny could hear now was soft, mournful sobbing.
Penny Jenkins sat in her small dusty office on the bottom floor of St. Francis Hospital. It was cramped quarters, but it had everything she needed to work right at hand. Lately, she had put on a few more pounds, but now her frame was hidden beneath the traditional habit of a Roman Catholic nun. She tapped a few keys on her computer as the couple sitting before her waited nervously.
"Im very sorry, Mr. and Mrs. Renault. I wish I had better news for you."
The young mother leaned into her husband, clutching the small gold cross around her neck and sobbing softly.
"How? How could this happen?"
Penny leaned across her cluttered desk and tried her best to comfort the couple. It wasnt every day that you learn that your childs soul has been compromised by a creature from the darkest pits of hell, and truthfully, they had taken the hardest part relatively well. They believed. They understood that there is a difference between mental illness and demonic possession, and were willing to let the church deal with the matter as only it could.
"I assure you, Mrs. Renault. We have one of the true experts in the field coming to help Billy."
Penny saw the silhouette in the glass across the room and stood up as the door opened. Pierre and Cathy Renault turned to see a woman entering the room. She was a tall, slender woman with wavy blonde hair cut conservatively and a pair of small glasses on the end of her perfect nose. She wore a black business suit that revealed her long legs and a white blouse that showed quite a bit of cleavage. She cleared her throat nervously and asked if they were the couple.
"Yes. Mr. Renault. Mrs. Renault. This is Daniela Christensen."
The couple looked at the woman and back at the nun in disbelief.
"She is the expert?"
Penny nodded as Daniela sat down in a third chair, crossing her legs demurely. Cathy Renault spoke first, hesitantly.
"Im sorry, Miss Christensen, but you were not quite what we were expecting." Daniela looked over, first to the wife then to the husband, her gaze lingering for a moment.
"I understand, Mrs. Renault. Believe me."
Penny interrupted, standing next to her friend.
"Daniela was once the victim of a demonic possession herself."
"Im sorry, Miss. Are you better now?" Mrs. Renault asked. Daniela shrugged and nodded, her eyes moving slowly over the husbands strong European features.
"Yes, sir. Im as good as I can be."
The couple listened carefully as Daniela Christensen spoke of her meeting with their son. He was being kept on the fourth floor, just as she had been, and she was positive that he could be helped.
"Its been my experience that possessions, such as Williams, are simple things to reverse."
"What of his soul?" Pierre Renault asked, his French accent still there after fifteen years in the United States. Daniela smiled, her perfect white teeth shining in the light.
"Once the demon is exorcised, his soul will no longer bear its stain. In only the rarest instances do we find a permanent spiritual affliction in the victims."
The couple held each other as they listened. The young woman, despite her appearance, spoke with confidence and she told them exactly what she knew. That night, two priests from St. Michaels entered the room and, just as Daniela Christensen had predicted, the exorcism was successful. Penny stood outside the room with the family, her heart swelling with joy as Billy Renault was wheeled out of the room. His soul no longer housed the horrible creature that had nearly destroyed him. Instead, all that could be seen were the curious eyes of a cute five-year-old boy.
As Penny returned to her office, she nearly jumped out of her skin as a shadowy figure turned in her chair.
"Lord, you scared me half to death." Penny said, resting a hand on her breast. Daniela Christensen turned, glancing up from her seat in the dark. Her long blonde hair fell loose from its bun, cascading over her shoulders in thick waves. A cigarette glowed softly in the darkness as she turned her back to the nun.
"It went perfectly," Penny said, turning on the light. Daniela nodded, smirking a little.
"Yeah, I know."
"You felt him leave, didnt you?"
Daniela said nothing and stood up. The black business suit was gone, replaced by a slinky black dress that emphasized her large bosom and incredibly long legs. She wore very high heels and her face was made-up to transform her natural beauty into a visage of wantonness. She crushed the cigarette beneath a stiletto heel and sighed as she walked toward the door.
"Give them my love, Penny. Please "
"I will, Danni."
"Ill be back tomorrow. I hope."
The nun walked over and hugged the leggy seductress, wishing she could help her. Daniela walked away, her heels clicking against the flooring as Penny picked up the cigarette butt and placed it in the soil of a nearby potted plant. She sat down slowly, praying that God would watch out for her good friend.
As Sister Penny listened to the doors closing behind her, her mind cast back, remembering when shed first seen Daniela Christensen, sitting on the bed with the thick leather straps binding her. The horrific creature was gone, leaving a lonely shattered woman behind. Daniela was more insane than rational for months, but Penny stayed with her as she began to recover her senses and her life.
As she recovered, she recounted the story to her friend. The demon had left her with memories that she could never repress. She spoke of the creature that required a conduit to this world. The demons followers, few but persistent, had sacrificed a prostitute and succeeded in bringing their dark mistress across from the other side. As thanks, the demon-made-flesh killed each and every one of her followers, drinking their essences for power. The demons coming had been foretold in a rarely studied scripture, though, by one of the church elders. But, no one believed. Except for one young priest. That priest had come to defeat her and found himself woefully outmatched.
Sensing the strength of the young priests will, the demon made it her own. She left the soul of the faithless, empty prostitute and fused her unholy spirit to the young mans. She enjoyed it as she molested his body, remolding him into a more feminine shape. She intended to corrupt his faith, but found his resolve to be greater than expected. That resistance had given the mortals enough time to contain her and attempt the second exorcism.
But, as Monsignor Gomez discovered, the soul of Father Daniel Christensen and the unnamable demon had been entangled in ways that no man could sever. So, with his last bit of strength, the old priest did the only thing he could to save the young man who had been his protégé. He could not exorcise the demon, so he bound her to the soul of the young priest for all eternity. The force of the older mans faith weakened the demon, restoring the younger priests soul to dominance.
However, all was not as it had been. Months after his own exorcism, Daniel Christensen found that not only had he retained the demons female form, but he also was the victim of a number of unholy appetites. At first, he tried to resist them, but that strain allowed the demon to resurface. Daniela Christensen would find herself flying into fits of rage, attacking total strangers or worse. To her revulsion, she discovered that by indulging the demons less destructive appetites, she could prevent its more dangerous aspects from resurfacing.
It was hard for Penny to watch her good friend reduce herself to a common street whore, but she knew it was the only way she could be saved. She had to coddle the demons desires for lust and pleasure, and in return, she gained time and control. The church, aware of her transformation, arranged for her to be hired as an expert on demonic possession and turned a blind eye to her nocturnal activities. As well as the other things that Sister Penny Jenkins had noticed.
First, Daniela experienced an acute sense of the supernatural. She could sense the presence of demons and, she believed, angels. It wasnt a feeling like any of us could experience, but she could tell you when someones soul was truly in peril. Also, and more disturbingly, it became clear after ten years, that Daniela Christensen was not aging. When Penny asked about this, Danni became quite agitated, denying the entire idea. It was only later that Penny understood why. To be trapped in a timeless circle of sex and sanctity, helping those who had been similarly cursed, but forced to live with her own curse for well, for a long time, could easily drive someone mad.
Penny sat in the dark, knowing that William Renault was being reunited with his family, and going back to his life without the blemish of the demon upon him. She knew that was why Danni never met with the families after the fact. In her heart and in her prayers, she hoped someday that the cycle would end, but she was a realist. Daniela Christensen was both an ally and a casualty of this spiritual war. And, Penny prayed every night that if Danielas soul was ever freed, she would get the peace that shed earned on earth. God knows she deserved it.
© 2001 by Vanessa Singer. All Rights Reserved. These documents (including, without limitation, all articles, text, images, logos, compilation design) may printed for personal use only. No portion of these documents may be stored electronically, distributed electronically, or otherwise made available without express written consent of the copyright holder.