The story of a lonesome ol'Jerome
Coming, my sweet flower! (or) My sphincter clenched
I wasn’t sure what to think when I looked over and saw a red-headed, very unhappy-looking woman standing at the corner of the library with her arms crossed, staring Lucifer down like she would squash his balls to paste if he did not comply. Husband? What the...? The Devil immediately transformed into a darkly handsome, younger man, making the woman groan with irritation. “Coming, my sweet flower!” I glanced at Z, who ignored the goings-on, seemingly unconcerned. “I’ll be right back,” said the newly attractive, but still weird-eyed Satan, who now seemed rather anxious.
Z smiled blandly. “Just over 9 minutes.” The Dark Lord frowned, then went to go talk to his wife.
I was wondering what was going to happen. Since I was already dead, I figured I should be afraid of some form of heinous torture for impertinence? I knew Z was in incomparable demand at the brothel, I mean, the demonic ladies in particular were crazy about his, eh, unique services. But did Z really have enough sway, as a sex-worker, to demand shit from the fucking Devil? Would it really create an economic wormhole, or whatever? Or upset some, I dunno, key political figures, or something? Did Z know something I didn’t? I sure fucking hoped so…
Then I heard a third voice. It was high-pitched with agitation, female, and enraged. I could make out her words clearly. “Daddy you give Z whatever he wants! You do it right now! No, not another fucking word! Don’t you love me? Well prove it! You do what he wants right now!” It went on like that, rapid-fire, with the second woman just out of sight. I could hear the Devil trying to speak, with the wife starting to sound like she was taking the apparent daughter’s side…
I glanced at Z. He just smirked and checked his cellphone, then held up four fingers. The daughter was starting to cry, and the wife was starting to get angry now. Oh man. My sphincter clenched.
The Devil came blustering back to us, red-faced, sat down, and, without missing a beat, launched into conversation. “You’re asking for a lot, but offering nothing in return. I’m making a counter-offer, if you will.” Z scowled, but he pressed on, “wait, hear me out! My daughter, Lilith, as you are doubtless aware, is very, very fond of you, Z. How about you see her, for free, once a week, for a year?” Lilith? Whoa, that was heavy, but I had no time to process that, as he didn’t wait for an answer. “And you, Owen, what do you do?” Fuck!
I had been virtually ignored, and that was what I preferred. “I work in the quarry.” The Devil sniffed. The motherfucking Devil had just sniffed at me! Was that bad? Had I just fucked us?
“Obviously that’s not what you did before you died. I mean, what do you do. What are you really?” He looked intrigued.
I sighed. “I was working on getting into veterinary school. I’m a veterinary assistant and pre-vet student.” His eyebrows shot up.
“And you were placed in the quarry? Man… Ok. I seriously need to do some work on personnel. For fuck’s sake.” He ran a hand through his hair, somewhat irritated. “Alright, how about you repay me by training with some of the veterinarians I have on staff. Their cases are not like yours will have been, but I know, for example, some of the nightmares still get problems with their feet, and Cerberus often has indigestion, that sort of thing.” That sounded awesome! I looked at Z, who wasn’t really interested and was lighting another cigarette.
Satan turned back to Z. “So, if you agree to see my daughter, and your friend agrees to train with my veterinarians, then I agree to help you, as you said. Do we have a deal?” He extended his hand. Z glanced at me, and I nodded my consent.
Z looked the Devil in the eye. “If you try and fuck us in any way, you will regret it. Lilith’s a sweetheart, but that won’t stop us.” Us?
The Devil nodded and smiled toothily.“I like a man with some sack.”
Z grinned, and shook his hand. “Deal.”
I heard the sound of feminine whispering, and saw both women watching intently, then giggling. Z winked at them, making them both blush and titter. I felt vaguely nauseated. What was it with chicks and Z? It was so gross!
Z leaned forward, taking a big drag of his cigarette. “When we’re upstairs, do we have to eat? We don’t right?”
Satan shook his head. “Nah. Though you won’t get sick or anything if you do, it just means you might have to crap later on. You’re sort of pseudo-alive. You’ll see. The main thing to know is that you’ll be stuck at room temperature, I can’t do anything about that for more than a few hours. And obviously avoid anyone you know. Don’t get photographed or recorded in any way. Don’t let your friend see you unless her life is in danger. Even then, there’s a price to pay. Seriously, heed that warning. The dead coming back freaks people out. In this day and age, I’m not sure what would go down. But, well, stirring shit up is always interesting, what can I say?”
I decided to speak up. “Can I go get some clothes first?” The Devil rolled his eyes and Z looked at me like I was the biggest pussy known to both demon and man. “Shut the fuck up, I’m not wearing the same clothes for two weeks, motherfucker.” I almost missed the subtle gleam of approval.
“We’ll have money, Owen, don’t be a pissant little bitch.” Z blew smoke in my face, but was clearly in a good mood. Thank… Satan’s wife?
“Alright, but only if Z will kiss my daughter goodbye.” Lucifer gave Lilith an indulgent little smile, and Lilith looked both embarrassed and approving. I could not wait to get out of there.
I refrained from rolling my eyes and vomiting as Z worked his machismo mojo, of which he had a sickening surplus. He stubbed his cigarette out and beckoned to Lilith, who had to be at least as tall as he was. “C’mere baby, that’s my good girl.” She came running into his arms. Fucking eew. Satan/Dad averted his eyes and plugged his ears, thank fucking whoever, because no father needed to hear their exchange!
I watched, fascinated, like it was a trainwreck. Z kind of dipped Lilith down, almost like they were dancing. He murmured something in her ear that made her giggle. Then he gripped her face and asked her if she had been a good girl. She shook her head, and he very lightly slapped it, smiling, and told her he’d have to punish her in two weeks when he got back.
“Open up.” Lilith opened her mouth, and he fucking spat right in it! Ugh! Then he kissed her in this ultra-slurpy way that you totally should NOT do in front of someone’s Dad and possibly Mom (step-mom?)! I couldn’t look anymore, I was horrified! The Devil and I exchanged disconcerted looks, a moment of true man-bonding over mutual embarrassment. Definitely not something I ever expected to have with the Lord of the Underworld. Well, he wasn’t such a bad guy…
After a moment, Z just apparently stopped and almost dropped Lilith, leaving her breathing heavily, and gestured to me to hurry up and get going. Z took a drag of his cigarette while I stood up. I nodded politely to the, uh, Dark Lord we had, um, threatened and who had apparently given me a new job, but he was back to working on Sudoku again.
I took it upon myself to kick Z subtly with my toe, trying to get him to, I dunno, wave goodbye to Lilith, or something, anything. It seemed called-for. He shot me an irritated look, but then turned, and gave, I dunno, a sexy nod or look, I didn’t really see it, but I heard Lilith say, “See you babe!” Ugh. Were the next two weeks all going to be like that?
Have you figured out who Satan's wife is yet?
my answer: yes (can't be more specific, obviously)