I watched him bring the chip to his mouth and then deposit it without getting a single crumb or bit of dip on his expensive Italian suit. He truly was evil.
“And how do you propose to do that?” I countered. “Are you going to use your dark powers to replace the Patriots with my beloved Jets?”
Lucifer chuckled at my bit of wit. “Miracles are more the work of my competition,” he finally replied. “I can’t help you with that request.”
“So then what did you have in mind?” I asked as I sipped my Snapple and glanced at the TV. It was still the Super Bowl pregame, so the commercials weren’t that exciting yet. I turned my full attention to my guest.
“I thought we might put a wager on the game,” The Prince of Darkness suggested as he went in for another shot at the dip.
My brow furrowed. “You know I’m not interested in putting my soul on the line.”
The Devil sighed heavily. “How long have we known each other, Austin?” he queried as he wiped a single, stray crumb from his perfect goatee. “You know I think of you as a friend and not as a potential target. I’m a little offended.”
Lucifer was right. We were friends and he never tried to make a deal for my soul. It was just my Catholic School upbringing. The Nuns had taught me to never trust the Fallen Angel who sat on the opposite end of my couch. In all that teaching, however, they never covered the circumstance of The Devil constantly showing up unannounced at The House on the Hill to just hang out and drink my Snapple.
“That was my bad,” I apologized and handed him a fresh Snapple from the cooler that sat on the floor between us.
I nodded. “So what did you have in mind?”
“Just a friendly wager,” he replied. “How about we play for a case of Snapple?”
I shrugged. “Sounds good to me. You know what flavor I like, right?”
Lucifer chuckled mockingly. “Look who’s getting all cocky. Who do you want?”
That was simple. I’m a Jets fan living in New England, so I loathe the Patriots. “I’ll take the Seahawks.”
A huge smile came across the face of The Prince of Darkness. “I was hoping you’d say that. The Patriots are my kind of team.”
“Because you like their wide open offense?” I asked and reached for some dip.
“No, because they cheat,” Lucifer looked at me like that should have been obvious. “If the world knew everything the Patriots did to gain an unfair advantage, I don’t think even people from New England would root for them.”
I raised an eyebrow to that one. “Like what? What else have they done other than doctor the footballs and record their opponent’s signals?”
The Devil just shook his head. “I can’t tell you. Trade secrets and such. It’s not just their behavior on the field, either. One of their former star players is in jail for multiple homicides, you know. Let’s just say they’d do pretty much anything to take that silver trophy home tonight.”
I gulped. Maybe because the Buffalo Chicken Dip was a little too spicy, or maybe because what Lucifer had just said was difficult to swallow.
“I’m not saying the Seahawks are little Angels, Austin, but they’re certainly not as bad as the Patriots.”