Disclaimer: Capcom owns DMC. Alastor's/Ifrit's personalities are mine. Chimera, Pagan, and Az, as OCs, are also mine.


WolfOfTheSteppes, Burryk and The Critic: The duel between brothers will happen, that much I can tell you.

Lady Krimson: Heh...

Specter Von Barren: I was thinking about starting from the beginning once I've finished with this fic. You may get your Phantom fight yet...

Shadowed Chaos and Shadow Wolf 22: ::bows:: And if things go right, it'll only get better...

Leppress and Shanisasha: Thanks.


A/N: Alastor's POV. Some introspection, some questions, some answers.


At the moment, hot resentment simmered below a thin layer of cool, calculated indifference.

I had insulted my master, and he, faithfully, insulted me in turn, though not in a way I expected. There were none of his typical threats or jeers, no snide remarks, no taunts. I am no longer "Alastor," he told me unexpectedly. Until I redeemed myself for spitting him through the heart - a past slight he should've overlooked by now! - my punishment would be to endure my new name, specifically, a name of his choosing. By this point, I was a thought away from telling him to go fornicate with a msira. Wisely, I throttled the impulse.

So it was that my new moniker was more a nickname, rather than an entirely different identity. Upon hearing the one syllable word, Ifrit, the whore-spawned bastard that he is, deigned to let me know just how much he approved of the name...by laughing himself senseless. When the gauntlets suddenly fell from my master's wrists and began flailing on the ground in unrestrained hilarity, I knew then I had reached a new level of humiliation.

Until my day of redemption, I would be known merely as "Al."

The mongrel added salt to the wound by feigning reticence. If I couldn't see his amusement, I sure as Hell felt it. Twit didn't even bother to hide the emotion from me...

Oh joy of joys, I had thought acidly to myself, my pride adopting a fetal position. My noble name lies gutted in the dirt while the lunatic, and his loudly dressed patsy, laugh it up. I didn't need another glaring reminder of how far I've fallen. Well, perhaps I should forsake sanity altogether then, hm? Like Ifrit? Maybe then I can fully appreciate the mechanics of a brain-addled half-breed's asinine sense of humor? Bah!

At least my mind is my own. No one, not even that fire fanatical blowtorch, Ifrit, can invade my private thoughts. At least I have that much. And Hell, since I'm on such a cheery bright note, if anything good can be said about playing lackey to the mongrel, it's that I've learned to control my temper in such a way that I have never had to do before. Not since my House...

Grgh-No! No...no sense in thinking about that anymore.

So what if they conspired against me? I am weapon to House Desparta, third most powerful House in all the Devil Kingdom. I am a symbol of their wealth, their power, their ambition, and I am their instrument of judgment and death. Still, despite all that, it's no business of mine if my House chooses to discard me. Could a superior devil arms been constructed in my place in secrecy? I wonder. As senseless as it sounds, I don't know what else to think without any memories of my expulsion to help base my reasoning on. I can't imagine anyone powerful enough to steal a soul weapon from its own House, the place of its forging! It would be like stealing coin from a nest of sleepless, particularly avaricious beasts of Satan - red dragons. Suicide.

And even if there was someone of great enough power, what dubious intent would drive him? And why me? As much as I'd love to claim otherwise, I'm not the most sought after sword in the Devil Kingdom... No one tampers with a House's devil arms without some dire retribution, be it from Pale Knight enforcers, the House patriarch, guardian beasts, guardsmen, sigil traps, wards of souls. A thief, no matter how skilled, wouldn't escape unscathed, much less survive until success. It simply wasn't possible. The fact that I continue to languish here on this gods forsaken island, apparently forgotten from sight, and memory, was well enough proof that my usefulness had become overrated.

I laugh at myself. It's a hallow sound even to my disembodied ears. I kick myself for taking circumstance so personally. Considering I grew up under the merciless codes of the Underworld, I shouldn't feel much of anything. I know the rules, I know them well. You trip, you fall, you die. It's either that or you become so disgraced that you tumble beneath the notice and care of others for the rest of you're days. Few get back up. Only the strong sur -

- I suddenly recognize where these dismal thoughts are taking me, and I growl at my traitorous musings. Like the rage and horror I felt on the moment of my capture - or the despair upon learning that Ifrit, free to do as he pleased, had become a potential hazard - I almost fell prey again to weak emotion.

Pity party is over, Alastor! I hiss, venting venom. What are you? A pathetic, mewling lost soul? So you're House shuns you...? Then show them the error of their ways. Lowly servant to a transient being? Surprise everyone and come back stronger than ever before! Trivial ties should not get in the way of ambition.

Yes, I will rise from my ashes...

I will be free one day.

In the meantime, I must plan. Oh, and keep the mongrel alive long enough to realize that plan, of course. I'm going to need his ability to move around, I think; there are places to go that I might find something helpful to my cause... Argh, but first I must learn to outwit him! He's a sharp one; I blame his sire for that. So as I plan his destruction, I will aid my master in my own way. He wishes to confront my Emperor? Fine. I can't do anything otherwise. The ensuing battle will be one-sided, a doomed endeavor, insists logic. I tell logic to go shove it.

I hate him, this man that binds me, and I would much rather see him suffer with every shallow breath, than have him destroyed in a heartbeat. My course is set, now. I am weapon to he who walks the path to vengeance and certain doom.

But my hate will save him.