The week from Hell literally earned that designation tonight when I returned to The House on the Hill to find The Devil, my most frequent uninvited house guest, making himself at home on my couch. Not only was he drinking my last Snapple, but he had also ordered some ridiculous pay per view movie that he didn’t even seem to be watching.
“What’s been going on, buddy boy?” Satan asked me as he held up the bottle of Snapple in salute. “I’ve been trying to make myself scarce, but you know how much I love to relax on this couch.”
Lucifer is a horrible liar. He says he likes my beat up couch, but he hangs out at my place because he has very few friends, he knows there’s always something in my fridge, and he can count on me to listen to him when he wants to talk about his problems.
When I pressed him on why he hadn’t been around lately, his answer caught me completely off guard. “I know there’s something you desperately want, and I’m worried that you’ll offer me your soul in exchange for it. As much as I wouldn’t want to take it, I cannot say no when I’m offered a soul. I’m just trying to make sure you get to Heaven where you belong, my friend.”
Clearly, my horned pest was alluding to The Girl I Love With All My Heart And Soul. It had honestly never crossed my mind to use my pull with Satan to bring her back to me, and now that he had brought it up, I had to fight very hard to bury the idea in the deepest, darkest recesses of my mind. I wanted to win her back, but on my terms. Love should never include a Deal with The Devil.
He could see I was vexed, so he kindly changed the topic. “Speaking of going to Heaven, did you know that there has been a steady rise in the number of souls voluntarily choosing to go to Hell? Thought that fact might rustle your toga a little.”
I eyed him suspiciously. Like I said earlier, he’s a horrible liar. Then again, he is Satan.
This Modern Philosopher was honestly confused by that statement. It costs money to exist in the afterlife? “Nothing is free, Austin,” Lucifer reminded me as he polished off the Snapple and continued to ignore the movie on my TV. “Remember, you can’t take it with you, so everyone arrives in the great hereafter in the same dire financial straits. Might I point out that Heaven is a gated community? Places like that are expensive!”
It had been a very long week, and my brain was still preoccupied with the idea of trading my soul for the happiness I wanted more than anything else in the world, so I was having difficulty determining if Lucifer was being honest, or totally yanking my toga.
“Heaven’s got wicked electricity bills since the place is all about the bright lights, and those guardian angels who patrol the place do not come free,” he continued with his reasons for why living inside the Pearly Gates was so expensive. “I’m a total slum lord, it’s dark and dreary, but at least the place has got free central heating. Who wants to spend eternity worrying about the mortgage, when you can come down and live in my ghetto for next to nothing?”
I went to the kitchen, grabbed a beer, and trudged back to the living room, where I plopped down on the couch next to my pitchfork wielding guest. Making mortgage payments was a drag. My electric bills are outrageous. I don’t write full time because I have to pay the damn bills. Do I really have to keep paying them even after I die?
The Devil just nodded and finally turned his attention to the movie. “By the way, I ordered a couple of pizzas and gave them your credit card number.”
I didn’t answer. My mind was racing. Too many Deep Thoughts about a topic I hadn’t even known would need any gray matter delegated to it.
That’s the curse of the Modern Philosopher…there’s always something to think about and cause more stress. Damn you, Satan! Why must you make a horrible week even worse?
I wanted to strangle him, but I knew murder was a sure way to get myself an afterlife with my victim as my landlord. Definitely not the way I wanted to spend eternity.
I turned my head to the left, glanced at the photo on the mantel of me with The Girl Who Is My Angel, and got my homicidal urges under control. I asked him what he’d gotten on the pizzas. “Pepperoni, mushroom, and green pepper on one. Extra cheese and extra meats on the other.”
The Devil was good for something. I decided to let him live.
Remember you can follow this Modern Philosopher on Twitter @Austin_Hodgens.