I don't know if this has happened to anyone else, but when I started creating characters, they immediately started to develop personalities and opinions on their own. Now, because I like to teach my mages all the spell elements, I ended up with half a million mages and healers I never use, as well as a handful of other characters. Having that many muses in your head and not writing is very uncomfortable, so I just had to do this. Here's the first chapter, introducing the characters, and I hope you enjoy!


On a makeshift battlefield in Celestia, a ragtag band of misfits were waging bitter war against a legion of angels. The eclectic group included demons, humans, and even an angel and a robot, all united for a common reason. Together, they fought for the greatest cause they could imagine, for all that they believed was right.

This is not their story.

* * *

In an abandoned room in King Laharl's castle in the Netherworld, a mishmash group of lesser demons sat around and played cards to pass the time.

This is their story.

* * *

There are some blessings to being weak. The weakest are left out of the hardest fighting, and so are at less risk. They have more time to themselves, not being on the battlefield constantly, and have less pressure put on them.

At the moment, however, the prospects for the weak ones were looking bleak.

"I swear, you have to be cheating," seethed a red-haired mage, not for the first time that evening. "There is no way you beat me that many times without—"

"Oh, shut it, Flannery." This interjection came from Brenda, a green mage sitting across the circle. "Heather. Come on, stand up for yourself when she does that!"

"I-I said I didn't... cheat..." The small voice trailed off; Heather the star mage had never been one for standing up to anyone.

"Guys, guys, wouldja stop fighting!" Despite the tense atmosphere, the voice was laid-back, its owner propped up on his elbows and blinking at his cards. Scott, a young scout and one of the many apprentices to the demon Overlord, scratched his head almost unconsciously in confusion. Why didn't anyone seem to enjoy their card games? They were supposed to be fun!

Whatever Scott may have thought, the general consensus was that the card games were a miserable way of passing time. Every so often, a few of the demons who were left behind would decide that they had better things to do than argue over pieces of paper, only to find that without the distraction they were even more bored and even more inclined to strangle one another. On this particular day, the card players were a mostly full group.

The fifteen or so demons were generally scattered into a few small circles, the reason for which was only apparent if one was familiar with the different, overlapping cliques that divided the stronger fighters from the weaker. Today, however, the separate circles had chosen to overcome their differences and all play together, for the simple reason that the newest red mage, Flamingo, had been left unattended and had used the extra packs of cards for spell practice. Even despite the cards they had played with now being charred beyond belief, several were regretting the decision to play as a group.

"Geez, I take it back," Flannery muttered into the silence that followed. "Sor-ree!"

The green mage sitting next to Flannery squeezed her shoulders. "You always gang up on her, you know," the mage, by the name of Winry, chastised. "Brenda, you have no idea what we've been through—"

"Like it matters!" The new speaker, Cordelia, was a girl with the uniformly waist-length blue hair all ice mages sported. "Battle experience, you're traumatized from it, blah, blah, blah... You just want pity!" With a noise that was half-yawn and half-stereotypically-feminine-sigh, the young spellcaster stretched out and rested her head on the shoulder of Isabella, the blue mage sitting next to her.

"Now, Cordelia, you know that you mustn't—" Winry's chastisement of her pupil was cut short by yet another interjection from the huddle of weaker mages across the circle.

"Sensei says you're just jealous you don't get to fight every day like she d—" (Speaker: Blondie, green mage and pupil of Blizzara, blue mage and not currently present.)

"At least our mentor doesn't leave her apprentices unattended to set cards on fi—" (Speaker: Firenza, red mage and pupil of Winry; comment directed at Flamingo.)

And with that, a flurry of rapidfire comments from all around the circle filled the ears of all present.

* * *

Up in Celestia, Angel Trainee Flonne had the distinct premonition that, while it had been an amazing achievement to get the current six members of their team to cooperate, it might be more difficult to do the same with all the lesser demons.

* * *

Back in the Netherworld, the card game long forgotten, it was safe to say that all Hell was breaking loose.

"G-Guys, calm down..." Wanda, a female warrior with gender identity issues, had never been much of a fighter. Unfortunately for her, that was enough reason for everyone else to not take her seriously.

Alicia, a pigtailed brawler, came to her rescue. "Quiet." The smooth, deep voice was commanding enough to reach the ears of most, and no one who knew Alicia wanted to anger her. "His Majesty will not be pleased to arrive and see us squabbling like children." Flamingo groaned and Brenda rolled her eyes, but gradually the mutters faded to a silence that lasted for all of eight seconds.

"Why the hell do I have to be stuck with a bunch of PMSing females?" Reginald, Laharl's apprentice rogue, had never been one for participating in fights but ended up in them often anyway due to his habit of speaking his mind. Predictably, fourteen-seventeenths of the room's occupants shot venemous glares at the young blond man.

"Hey, you've got me," Scott protested amiably, grinning at Reginald.

"I would not advise forgetting my presence," rumbled a man garbed in red Skull clothing from next to Flannery.

Reginald groaned exaggeratedly. "Why the hell do I have to be stuck with a bunch of PMSing females, a moron, and Efreet?"

"I don't know, Reginald," a blond woman replied silkily, closing her eyes and crossing her arms. "Perhaps it is because you are unfit for, shall I say, 'better' company...?" Clara, a cleric and the oldest of the group, never stopped flouting her supposed authority over the rest.

"Huh? What does that mean?" A small, purple-haired girl in a similar dress to Clara's tilted her head in confusion. "If you don't know, why'd you answer?"

"Okay, okay, this is so not an environment for little kids." Helen, Clara's apprentice healer, pulled herself away from her obsessive grooming for long enough to raise an eyebrow at the young girl. "Run off and play, Primella, run off and play." Primella, not being old enough to recognize that she was being talked down to, took Helen at her word and ran off at light speed, most likely to go bother some of the castle demons.

"We need order and peace here." Priscilla, a priest who showed family resemblance to Primella despite lack of relation, folded her hands in her lap. "Everyone, follow me in these breathing exercises. In for a count of seven, hold for a count of..." Her words were drowned out by the sudden revival of conversation – for those who hate euphemisms, a more proper word for the cacophony of speech would be 'argument'.

Andromeda, the teenage galaxy mage who was Priscilla's apprentice, walked calmly over to the edge of the room and, after folding her hands briefly in prayer, proceeded to hit her head against the wal.