My Goddess first came to me when I was a young man. I was twenty-five years old, and an outcast. I dreamt of a horrible world, one even worse than the one I already lived in. It was filled with burnt, decaying buildings, and ravenous children hungering to devour me.  They chased me throughout the festering city, clawing at my flesh whenever I stopped to catch my breath. I was so frightened, and then I saw Her.

She stood in the doorway of a ruined building, and beyond Her lied not the husk of a torched home, but a sunlit garden. She took the form of a beautiful woman, both to catch my eye and to comfort me, but I could tell even then it was not Her true form. It was simply an expression of Her essence. I don’t even think my Goddess could be called a She, but my affection for Her is so great, I cannot bring myself to call Her “It.”

Every last part of Her was lovely. The sun shining from beyond lent Her an ethereal glow. A breeze came upon Her, pressing Her light dress against the sensuous curves She’d crafted to set my heart on fire. Her smooth blonde hair shimmered like gold as the wind cast it about. She smiled at me, and the darkness surrounding me melted away. I wasn’t running anymore. I was safe.

She reclined by a tranquil pond, and I rested my weary head on Her lap. She sighed and stroked my hair.

“Poor thing,” She whispered. “This world is not ready for you. They don’t understand you.”

I felt the weight of a thousand burdens fall from me. In the embrace of my Goddess, I knew peace for the first time.

“I will protect you,” She told me, “if you serve me.”

I was excited and frightened at the same time. She knew it. 

“I will make you happy,” She continued. “I will give you strength. I will bring you peace. I will show you love. But you must promise to do My bidding in your world. Be My emissary. Teach your world of Me.”

“You are too great,” I told Her. “How could I ever do You justice?”

“I chose you,” She replied. “You are the only one worthy.”

When I woke, I still felt Her presence, though I could not see Her. I knew without a doubt She was with me.

When I went to work that day, everything was different. I no longer felt crushed by the mass of people surrounding me. My fear was gone. Other men were no longer imposing, pretty girls no longer intimidating. My manager could shout at me about proper procedure for hours, and it would not phase me. What were they in the face of my Goddess? 

As they day went on, I felt Her presence wane, and it worried me. Fear and insecurity poured back into me, into the space she had filled just moments before. Without her light, the truth of my menial job again became a burden. Had I done something wrong? Had I offended my Goddess?

She came to me again in my sleep that night. I closed my eyes, and immediately opened them again in my dream. She sat on the foot of my bed.

“Did you feel Me leave you today?”

“I did.”

“I want your devotion,” She said. “You’ve experienced what I can do for you. My presence will never leave you if you just promise devotion.”

She sensed my trepidation.

“Yours is a stubborn lot, I know. I promise, your devotion to Me will not destroy you. It will make you greater. The truest version of yourself.”

“I’ll still be myself?”

“I would want nothing less.”

I sat up in my bed. “How do I know you won’t leave me again? I couldn’t take it.”

My Goddess smiled, and leaned over to take my hand. “You will have to put your faith in Me, as I have put mine in you. Will you?”

The warmth of Her touch filled me in a way I’d never felt before. I felt complete for the first time in my life. “I will.”

I woke up immediately. The sun had just begun to rise. I was invigorated. Every fiber of my being felt powerful. It was as if a limitless source of energy coursed through me. Where once the world felt like a giant maze, constantly blocking my path and pushing me around, I now felt in control.

It must have been a strange sight to see me smiling as I boarded the train that day. Confidence had never been something I was blessed with, until that moment. Filled with the light of my Goddess, I could feel nothing but strength. Each night I dreamed of Her, and each day I felt Her strength become my own.

After a week, I began to notice things I’d never perceived before. I could see the truth behind the masks people wore. The prudes hiding their lust, the righteous hiding their shame. I could see the lies as plain as day. Gordon from accounting was cheating on his wife with Mathilda in receiving. Zoe was skimming money from the corporate accounts. Andy was selling company secrets to the competition. My Goddess was allowing me to see in a way no man ever had.

The greatest darkness hid inside Shannon, the barista who made my coffee every morning. It took me a moment to see it. Deep inside her, a demon was growing. I saw it, horns already forming on its head, within her belly. I couldn’t believe it, and yet there it was, plain as day.

That night, I spoke to my Goddess about what I saw.

“You have borne witness to just one of the many obstacles in My path,” She confided in me. “The darkness that keeps My light from completely entering your world.”

“What must I do?”

“She must be cleansed of the darkness,” She explained. “You must build an altar to Me, and liberate her womb from that accursed being. Dedicate her flesh to Me.”

Following my Goddess’ direction, I raised an altar in my basement. I consecrated it with my own blood, and went out to collect my first sacrifice to Her.

Picking up Shannon wasn’t difficult with my Goddess guiding me. I invited her out for dinner toward the end of her shift. It’s amazing how quickly people trust a familiar face. I kept a chloroform-soaked rag in my car to keep her from struggling when she realized the truth of my mission.

The sacrifice was difficult. I’d never dissected a person before, and I nicked some of her organs. In Her infinite kindness, my Goddess forgave. “You’ll do better next time,” She told me. She was right.

Since then, six more demons have been purged from our world by my hand. Tonight, I seek the seventh. My Goddess wants to share Her light with the world, and I never do any less than what my Goddess demands.

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