My name is Kavri'el. It was once uttered with familiarity, reverence or awe. Now my name is only a reminder of failure, of the danger one faces when facing one's own monsters.
I grew up in a monastery. I never knew of any parents, but the priests saw an opportunity to teach me how to defeat evil. I lacked the discipline for the monastic traditions, but I learned to harness an unbridled rage, so terrible that the priests said I must have been chosen by the gods. I came to know this god as Torm, whose power raged through me and compelled me to fight. It was in a fit of one of these rages that I discovered my wings, golden and celestial. They appeared when I slipped into a pure rage filled with my god's blessing. And thus I became a very dedicated slayer of monsters.
It was a man who first found the ways to calm me, the first to do so. Marius, a merchant boy, with a soft touch and a sweet voice, he could pull me back from the brink. When he was around, I found myself filled with other feelings and the anger did not control me. We began our romance with less passion and more with the simple comfort of understanding. We were married and a child was expected.
However, when I was farther along than would have been convenient, I was called to duty, a fierce demon was slaughtering innocents. I left my beloved behind to worry about me, for I could not channel my rage with him around. He protested my departure, especially since I was carrying his child, but I left to do my duty.
The demon was easy enough to dispatch, but the childbirth came shortly after, and I gave birth in that village, far from Marius. I'm afraid several of the populace were hurt by my kicks and punches as my daughter came into this world. And I carried her back as fast as I could, eager to have her meet her father.
But it was not to be. When I returned to our home I found nothing but tragedy, my husband having been killed. Through my training, I uncovered the truth of what had happened, that a necromancer who was loyal to Zariel had sacrificed him, taking his soul into Avernus. I took our baby to the monastery and asked them to look over her until my return. I sometimes still think of her, wondering where her life has taken her. Sometimes I fear that I will see her again.
I traveled into Avernus with a strange group. A gnome named Lutz, a jester called Madcap, an elf named Jareth and a red Dragonborn named Dar Zumog. Each one with their own reasons to delve into the deep fire. Lutz was pleasant enough, looking to find secrets of his ancestry. Madcap… I don't think he needed a reason to do anything, so far gone into his insanity was he. Jareth sought knowledge, more than the regular world seemed able to provide, and Dar was searching for his brother.
Our paths took us many ways, and each demon I killed started to become more and more fun. Thinking of the demon that caused me to leave my beloved, thinking of the devil-worshipaper who had slain my beloved, I found absolute joy in exterminating the creatures of Avernus. Strangely, my wings became permanent upon my back, my celestial heretige becoming more dominant over my existence as I purged the demonic.
Dar, as it turned out, was a liar and a trickster. His brother was a follower of Tiamat and a truly unsaveable soul. We even found a unicorn and Dar gave it to his brother, for it to be sacrificed to Tiamat. I never truly forgave him for this, although there were many reasons I disliked Dar, as we two could not seem to agree on anything.
Madcap continued to do whatever he pleased, even using a Bag of Devouring to devour the heads of our enemies, among other disgusting and terrible things. He was an absolute force for chaos and I was as impressed as much as I was disturbed.
Jareth made a deal with a great Devil for immortality, to achieve his goal of obtaining knowledge. After that, he never looked the same, very doll-like and dead inside. Still, he acted like he always had, so I worried not for him.
As for Lutz, I was rather fond of him, even when Avernus mutated him with bat like wings of his own, which allowed the two of us to fly as much as we wished. It turned out his ancestors had stood with Zariel long ago and fled when the tide of battle turned. It became his mission to reclaim his family legacy and move past this shame to claim Zariel's sword and redeem the fallen Angel.
We learned of Zariel, mostly through Lutz's heretige. That she was once an Angel who fought demons only to lose a battle and bedome one herself. Now she commanded demons. I personally felt myself reflected in her story. I swore I would have aid them in redeeming her, so long as I found my vengeance.
The group did aid me in finding my vengeance. We tracked down the necromancer and engaged in combat. She tried to make me attack Dar, but failed. So instead she had Dar attack me. I wasn't very hesitant to attack him. When it came to it, he did snap out of it, and he proceeded to try to kill her, to deprive me of my final hit on the woman who'd ruined my life. Instead my wings carried me fast and I did get the last hit. I crushed her heart in my fist and roared to the heavens of my rage.
After this, we all decided to go find Zariel, for better or worse. This meant finding her Sword, which we did locate after some time. However, the retrieving of it would mean erasing all that a person was, all for power. At that time I was, admittedly, too scared to grab it for myself. It was Lutz who ultimately made that sacrifice, his wings being replaced by holy ones and his optimistic fun personality replaced by a mighty but haughty one that thought he was above it all.
We faced Zariel, none of us the person who we once were. Everything Lutz was, he had lost, becoming a stranger to us. Dar had sided with his brother many times and was not someone I would consider a friend. Madcap… ok, Madcap was actually fairly unchanged by these events, but he was always scarily hilarious. And Jareth was an emotionless knowledge-seeking doll working for devils. As for me, my wings had darkened, still maintaining their feathers but now touched with darkness and fire at the edges, almost like Zariel's herself.
She regained her light and rose to the heavens and we did glorious battle with legions of demons, all of us coming together for one last strike against evil. And though it became close, we were victorious.
I don't think any of us were unscarred by our paths. Lutz was forever changed, becoming the leader of a new generation of Hellriders to fight the darkness. Jareth became a devil's helper, finding all the knowledge he could attain with a limitless life. Madcap went back to his criminal life in some city or another. Dar, I didn't look to see where he had gone.
And as for me, I found a new purpose. Zariel's rise and ascension had left a world in chaos. And I would use my darkened wings and blighted celestial blood to destroy all demons who got in my way, to rule over them in fear. And while I fear what my daughter would see if she saw me, I will forever be a monster for the monsters and a force to be feared, even without Torm to guide me.