Monday, September 26, 2011

Damn Straight

Lucifer shuffled into God’s office and took a seat in the cushy leather chair facing the owner’s desk. The Almighty was busy finishing up some paperwork, so Luc peered west through the floor to ceiling windows, admiring the naked female that was running here and there seemingly without purpose.

“Who’s the chick?” he asked.

God looked up from His notes, pulled His glasses down to the tip of His nose and looked outdoors. He smiled. “Oh that’s Eve” he replied, “I made her to keep Adam company; not that you need to know” he added as he set two sheets of paper before him, both facing his subject.

“OK” Luc said “I screwed up, I shouldn’t have fought you, I get it. So what’s the punishment then, let’s get it over with.”

“You have choices to make my child. Read each contract and agree to that which suits you best.”

The devil picked up the first page and browsed through it, mouthing the words as he went. “Exile…own universe… far, far from here… uh huh, uh huh.” He set that paper back on the desk. “You know” he said” you have very feminine script. Now that’s not a bad thing, I’m just sayin…”

God looked downward and shook his head. “You can never quit can you” He said. “Read the other please.”

Lucifer grinned, then shrugged. He was hoping to get at least a smile out of the Father, but there wasn’t much humor in heaven, so he couldn’t be too disappointed in the audience response. That didn’t make him unfunny of course, just out of place. He reached for the second page and read aloud.

“I, Lucifer, Fallen Angel and scourge of heaven, shall reign over the fires of damnation for a period not to exceed infinity.” He stopped for a moment and grinned again. Heaven wasn’t humorless after all. “Nice touch that” he said, and then settled back into the chair to finish in silence.

“Ok” he finally said, “by the looks of it, were I to accept this punishment I will forever be your foil, like an open wound you can never heal. Why would you do this to yourself much less to me. I do love you ya know, I just got a little big for my britches there for a minute.”

“Can’t tell you that, sorry. It’s a personal thing. Call it part of a plan, yin yang, a teeter totter.”

“Teeter totter?”

“Oh you know what I mean, that’s the best metaphor I can come up with at the moment. So you’ve read them both. Choose.”

Lucifer didn’t like either option really. All his friends were in Heaven, boring lot that they were. And God was always mucking about creating something, like that Eve chick. Man was she a hottie! If he left, he’d lose access to being the first to see all the new stuff. Suddenly his eyes caught another piece of paper, mostly because God was slowly sliding it away from its position on the desk and whistling.

“Wait a minute! What’s THAT! Another offer?”

God stopped moving the piece. “Well, it was” He said, “until you called my most perfect creation a chick. Do you have any idea how disrespectful that is? And I saw the way you leered at her with lust in your heart. Disgusting!”

“Oh Come on! Don’t be so touchy, for your’s sake! I apologize. She’s a beautiful piece of work she is. Just like chickens. I was just comparing her to another of your most fab creations! And it was just an innocent glance! There, better? Now, let me see that other choice.”

“Not a chance Blackbeard, you gave up that possibility by your snotty demeanor and lack of moral underpinning.”

Lucifer stood and quickly turned toward the window, waving his finger toward the orchard beyond the meadow. “Why is… is that girl picking an apple?”

God jumped up from his desk and ran to the glass. Meanwhile, Lucifer grabbed the last paper from the table and started to speed read its contents. God, knew what had happened immediately, well, even before that really. And He was not amused.

Lucifer cried out. “You’d have forgiven me? We could have started over? I could have stayed? And you were gonna chuck this choice just because I called your beloved Eve a chick? Man! That’s just not fair!”

“I don’t have to be fair. I’m God” God said as he retook his seat and held out a fountain pen. Just sign one of these and move on Luc.”

“That’s just crap” Lucifer said, “You’re the only guy I know that gets to be all loving and all vengeful in the same breath! That’s Absurd!”

“It’s not absurd” the Almighty answered, “it’s a mystery.”

“Mystery my ass! It’s a conundrum!

“Oh alright, it’s an enigma then.”

“You call this an enigma? Bull! It’s an impossibility is what it is!”

“And that’s why you have to go my child. You just can’t accept that some things are based entirely on faith. Choose, or I shall have to choose for you.”

I choose that one” Luc said, pointing at the third paper he’d now dropped on the floor. “I choose starting over. I choose forgiveness. I choose love.”

God’s face was saddened, but His mouth firmly created the words “not that one”, as he pushed the other two options toward his once favorite angel.

Lucifer wiped his tears, nodded, and said softly, “can you give me a minute alone? I just want to think. Really, just a couple minutes.”

“Surely” said God, “take a stroll around the garden one last time. You have 15 minutes. I’d give you longer but I have a canyon I need to gouge out.”

Lucifer shrugged and exited the room. The moment he shut the door, he began to hum and walked toward the huge apple tree deep within God’s orchard.

He knew the chick was close by; he’d been glancing at her all through his conversation with the boss.

“Hey honey” he shouted as he closed in on the tree and maiden, “come here a sec, I’ve got a gift for you.”

Eve flounced toward the lovely angel, tilting her pretty head and smiling a great big smile. “A gift? For me?”

The devil reached into the apple tree and yanked the biggest, juiciest apple he could from a lower limb, shined it up upon his feathers and offered it to the lass.

“What’s this” the girl asked as she grasped the huge fruit.

“It’s a Pop Tart” Luc said. “You could eat it just like that, but I’d warm it up first and share it with your boy toy. Pop tarts are best shared ya know.”

“Well gosh” Eve whispered in awe, “I didn’t know we had Pop Tarts in the garden! All I knew is that we’re not supposed to eat the apples off the tree of knowledge or whatever, so I avoid fruit altogether. Adam says that’s why my teeth are kinda falling apart!”

“Yea well, whatever dear” Lucifer said. “Now make sure you eat it all up or the Father will think you don’t appreciate Him!”

“You bet Mister angel” Eve said, “I’m gonna go find a toaster right now!” And off she ran for the Heavenly kitchens.

A half hour later God stepped into the St. Michael Bar and Grill, ordered a Smith and Currans and took a seat next to Lucifer who was sipping on a whiskey in a dark corner of the room.

“I was so miffed that you never came back, I might have dug that canyon a little deep” He said. He kicked at the suitcases that Luc had placed near the table. “I see you’re packed. Which contract son, not that I can’t guess after your latest hijinx.”

“You’re gonna regret this ya know. I’m gonna make life very difficult for your new little toys,” Lucifer said as he signed his eternity in Hell into being. “Some people can deal with rejection. I aint one o-those people!”

“So mode it be” God answered as He took the contract and slipped it into His letter jacket pocket.

“What the hell does that mean, so mode it be?”

“I don’t know” God said, “it comes up in a movie in a few thousand years. I thought it sounded kinda cool so I co-opted it in advance.”

“Well, I suppose it’s yours like everything else is” Luc said as he stood and shook the Father’s hand. “We’ll see you around I guess. I’ll send you a calling card now and then, like a disgraced Pope of something, just so you know I’m still in fine spirits.”

“I’ll never forget you Lucifer” God said with a tear in His eye.

“Damn straight” said Luc, and he turned and took the downward spiral of the stairway to heaven, never to be angelic again.

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