The Song of Tire Irons

By Neel Krishnaswami (


I was feeling pissed, even though I mostly liked Earth duty. For one thing, it's not Hell -- don't laugh, it's true. For another, the boss is petty, infinitely vindictive, and with more experience hurting people than any million other people combined, so distance between my intact skin and the Home Office is a damn fine thing.

But I digress: the only downside to Earth duty is angels, but it's a doozy. And in point of fact, an angel was the very reason I was pissed. Fortunately, I was about to feel a lot better: the angel had somehow gotten the notion that I was tired of my evil ways, and had come to evangelize the glories of kissing God's big white butt. Back in reality, I was actually planning on evangelizing the glories of shooting my enemies in the face with .357 magnums.

So, the scene was this: we were in my office, and she was on one side of my desk (made of real mahogany imported from an evil Burmese dictatorship, natch), and I was leaning back in my swivel chair with my legs on the desk and aforementioned .357 magnums pointed at Rainbow Brite. Such situations arise only very rarely, and I was not about to pass up the chance to gloat villainously. Frex: "You've been a bad little girl," "Your beauty gives me great pleasure, but your death will give me more," et cetera et cetera. You know the routine.

I was having a blast -- I even had some cool shades on, and a this wonderful black leather poser jacket -- when there was a great big DONG in the structure of the universe and the Whoopi Goldberg of the archangelic scene manifested in my office to lecture me on my evil ways and blast me back to the stone age. Before she could do either, I grinned my shark-grin (the one that I used up three drama coaches developing) and said the magic words.

It was WONDERFUL -- her terrible glory went out like I had shot a light bulb, and while she was looking confused, I vaulted over the desk, snagging the tire iron I had left on it, and beat Novalis to death. That's right -- I beat the frigging Archangel of Flowers to death with a tire iron. No, Strawberry Shortcake didn't do anything, because everything was supposed to get better once her archangel showed up. She didn't even resist when I shot her in the face with my .357 magnum.

The rest -- descending to Hell, breaking my Heart, and leaving a mash-note for the Game -- was straightforward. Easy as these things ever get, anyway. So I am my own boss now; captain of my destiny, master of my fate, all that crap. Yeah, and sure, I'll teach you how, too.

The Song of Tire Irons (all realms)

The Song of Tire Irons has a very simple effect: sing it, spend 1 Essence, and the target temporarily becomes a mundane human for a number of minutes equal to the check digit of the Song. Ordinary angels and demons are affected precisely as the Game's Humanity attunement, but for some reason Superiors become 5-Force humans with no ability to channel Essence. No, there's no known way to resist it.

Its creator used it to beat Novalis to death with a tire iron (hence its name) before going Renegade and spreading it as fast as he could through the entire Infernal Underground. Both angels and demons know it now, though it is *extremely* popular among Renegades who want to give the finger to the universe and do what they will on Earth, completely immune from all consequences. It's not that good, but it's about as good as it gets.


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