Hellish Offer

“Looks like I win,” Satan winked at the young woman in front of h”Very well come with me.”

“Yes!” Julie cheered and gave Satan a high-five. Her other two friends, Eric and Arthur both grumbled at the loss.

“Wait!” Arthur interrupted. “How did you win?” Satan turned around; his tall black horns scratched the low stone ceiling. He smiled at Arthur.

“You set a win condition for your team…,” he gestured at Arthur and Eric. “…and a lose condition for mine,” the red giant patted Julie on the shoulder. “If you didn’t win, you lost. If we didn’t lose, we won.” He looked at Julie, then back to Arthur. “If you don’t want to watch what happens to her I can arrange someone to take you and Eric shopping. You can come back when it’s your turn.”

“No thanks,” Arthur said. He stepped forward and grabbed Julie’s hand. “She’s not leaving my sight.”

Arthur,” Julie whined with a whisper. “Don’t be rude,” she said.

“It’s okay, Julie,” Satan said. He turned again and walked toward the office door. “Arthur just needs time to come around,” he said over his shoulder as he led the three friends out of the office. Satan led them through a narrow maze of similar looking office doors. Each door had a small window next to it and Arthur peered inside each room as they walked by. The rooms appeared to be cramped cubicles; each occupied by a person in a suit sitting at a desk in front of a computer screen.

“Are they keeping score? You talked about that earlier. And you said something about rules too,” Arthur asked. The devil stopped in his tracks and turned around to face the trio. They were huddled together in the narrow hall with Julie between Eric and Arthur. Satan smiled at all three of them.

“Only Hell’s employees get that information,” he said. Eric cleared his throat and pointed upward. “And some of the MiddleMen too,” Satan grumbled.

“Who’re the MiddleMen?” Julie asked. She did not have as much concern as Arthur, but the name piqued her interest.

“Okay, one thing at a time,” Satan held his hands up in front of him in a “whoa” gesture. He pointed at Julie.

“Our team won the coin-toss so you get the first pick. That was just to pick out your Unique Soul, but I have a better offer.” He stepped forward and wrapped his arm around Eric.

“My boy’s gonna take over and he needs reliable support. How would you two like to be demons?” he asked with a large grin. “You still get to choose first,” he said to Julie.

“No way!” Arthur responded first and took a step back. He tried pulling Julie back with him, but she did not move.

“Can we still be Uniques?” Julie asked. Satan nodded.

“Not only that, but you’ll get all the answers,” Satan said.

“You’re not gonna like them,” Eric added with a somber tone.

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