"You were ordered to assassinate me?" Halkkor repeated incredulously.
"That's right," Vilnius answered much too happily.
"And who, pray tell, orchestrated this egregious breach of trust?" he asked, his voice changing from a low, dangerous growl to a thunderous, unrestrained bellow. The way he turned toward me as his question swelled to a scream seemed to indicate that I was his first suspect. I have to give Halkkor credit for one thing--he's definitely not stupid.
I opened my mouth to attempt to convince him that Vilnius was lying, but before I could think of a way to begin, Vilnius jumped in and said, "It was your best buddy right here, of course." Just in case anyone was unclear of who he meant, he clapped a hand of false friendship on my shoulder.
Halkkor glared at me. He was big, scary monster guy, and it didn't take much for him to appear intimidating, but this was a whole new level for him. I expected him to tear my limbs into pieces at any second without discussion or further provocation. Of all the times I'd been terrified since my death and descent into Hell, this was easily the most terrifying.
"You've made your final fucking mistake, Devil," he shouted. He began plodding toward me, muscles bulging. He moved slowly at first, but he was picking up speed. I backed away helplessly.
And I was helpless. Because as the most fearsome creature I'd yet encountered in Hell began charging me, I realized that he was going to kill me and I still hadn't discovered how his kind could be killed at all. I had no way to defend myself.
Behind Halkkor, Vilnius stood watching, arms crossed. He was smirking proudly.