The bathroom smelled like pennies and sulfur. John had painted sigils and other signs and names on the walls, the mirror, the ceiling. He had, as best he could, put to circles of protection around the bathtub. He filled it with ice and, still dressed, climbed in. He called 9-1-1 on the pay-as-you go phone and said, calmly, "There is a boy who is bleeding out in a bathtub full of ice, I think it was another cult killing." He told them the address of the house he had broken into, then he shouted: "Oh my god! There's three of them! They're all, they're all so blonde!" and dropped the phone in the tub. He took the ornate, pearl handled, antique shaving razor from his breast pocket and slit both his wrists. He splashed his blood onto the ceiling and onto the mirror, into both the circles of protection. He felt woozy. He closed his eyes. John thought through the incantation, then said it all out loud, syllable by syllable.
John's wrists pulsed and he pushed them together, but the pain medication had worked and his cuts were deep, tendrils of blood races between the chunks of ice and slowly diffused.
John laughed, a little hahah, and splashed at the source of the blood. "Huh." he said.
The tendril zipped between his hands and leapt out of the water and onto the ceiling.
"Oh!" John said and sat up abruptly; some ice bumped into his wrists and pulled the gash on his right forearm slightly more open --more blood jumped straight from his wrist out and onto the ceiling. It pooled, diffused, spread like a time lapse shadow of a person, stretched and stretched, then reached down, pinkish tendrils pushed at John's face.
"Out, off. There's a war duh. Ward," John said. He pointed at the floor and more blood splashed onto the two circles of protection. "Uh," he said.
The blood swirled and vaporized, then reappeared, smashed in the this space between the two circles.
"I have a deal to make. Half my soul and all this blood, for." John trailed off.
In the bloody swirl, mouths formed.
The demon towering over John looked down and smiled with all thirteen mouths. "This gonna be quick turn around, human boy who summed ______ ____ _____." it said with a voice like rolling thunder and the clap of horse's hooves. Each mouth said exactly one word. It continued, "What me give in exchange for half the boy's soul, all this blood?"
John squeezed his eyes shut and shuddered. He gasped in the cold bathtub. "I need uh, protection from the other witches."
"I can't let them kill me, or maim me."
"Seriously?" John spasm-ed and the ice in the tub with him rattled. The water was quickly turning from pink to deep red. He clenched his jaw until the chattering stopped. "They can't cut me up, or stop me from being fully mobile. Not for long."
"More than five seconds?"
"No dying, no damage? No stillness? In exchange for blood and half soul?"
"Can I I I I I I I I I I I I?"
"The deal is sealed with this blood?"
"Deal between ______ ____ _____, boy is sealed with that blood, half soul." The demon's thirteen mouths opened then stretched and stretched and with thirteen progressively wetter tearing sounds opened and dropped all the way to the floor. "The deal is sealed. The deal is sealed. The deal is sealed, now," it said.
"Watch my skin, p-p-please," John mumbled and slumped.
The demon with thirteen mouths nodded and oozed around and into the bathtub, filling it, almost smothering John. The blood in the water disappeared as if sucked out through thirteen different straws.
"Holy mother of god!" One of the paramedics shouted then shrieked and dropped to the floor, clutching at his eyes.