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“What Kingdom?” Matt yanked his hand out of the woman’s filthy hands. He hoped she didn’t think it was rude; the reflex was a direct reaction to her grabbing him when he did not expect it. Luckily she didn’t seem offended. She stood from her nest of frayed, discolored blankets and cardboard and smiled at…

Hellish Service

“This is a special case,” Satan said. He nodded through the tinted glass window at the room on the other side. Two very different people sat on a red couch in warm, welcoming living room. Sunlight poured into the room through the windows. A short, waif-like girl with dark hair cuddled next to an older…

Clowning Around

“I want to give these…,” Alliane waved her hand over a pair of old white sneakers. They were frayed, faded and held together by strips of tape. “…the powers of this.” She placed a single brown leather boot on the metal picnic table next to the sneakers. Jenny, one of the three girls standing next…

No Hands

“I saw him pull a card from nowhere. He has to be one,” Garth heard an unfamiliar voice as he came to. The last thing he remembered was a sharp pain on the back of his head while walking to his car after one of his shows. He realized he was tied to a chair….

Vanilla Origin

“She was beautiful,” Alliane said then returned the node to Billy. He gave it to her to show a picture of a white-haired woman in an orange dress sitting atop a t-rex. “But she looks so sad in that photograph.” “Yeah. But I absolutely love her,” Billy paused. He took dropped the node into the…

M.P.D.T.

“Here’s the ‘science stuff‘ you wanted,” Eugene sighed the phrase. The round man in a white labcoat walked into Wallace’s lab carrying a milk crate’s-worth of shiny electronic components. The spacious lab was crowded with waist-high speakers pointed at a stocky, grey-haired researcher. He was hunched over working on something with his back toward Eugene;…

Satan’s Gift

“Just this once??” Arthur threw his hands up in frustration. “How many more times do you want to go to hell?” Julie shrugged. “I dunno, it might be fun,” she said. Then she looked her best friend in the eyes. “Yeah, my dad says they have a killer shopping district,” Eric chimed in. He stood…

Villainous Hobby

“Geez. Here we go again,” DarkBlack rolled his eyes as he sat down on the park bench. He raised and extended his cuffed hands for balance until he felt the cool metal beneath him. “I was just thinking the same thing,” General Stronguy said. He placed a heavy hand on DarkBlack’s shoulder. “Why are we…

Devilish Tour

“I can’t stand your father,” Julie said. Arthur narrowed his eyes and tilted his head. He sat in a giant purple bean bag across from his best friend; she sat on the bed. “What does that have to do with,” Arthur skipped the name and pointed to the room on the other side of the…

Death & Friends

“Thanks again for the upgrade,” WaterJet said. She lovingly cradled the blue ceramic pitcher in her arm like a newborn while they walked through the outdoor bazaar back to the guild hall. “But are you sure giving LaughTrack that boot is a good idea? He’s already faster than Hermes without them.” “Oh, you guys have…