I am not at all afraid to point out that I have often been the source of those afflictions. In fact, I take great pride in it.
After all, I am The Prince of Darkness.
However, I do not like to bear witness to its effect on someone who I think of as a dear friend.
As you might imagine, The Devil has few friends.
I knew that The Sweet Irish Girl was returning to Ireland today, so I arrived at The House on the Hill prepared for the worst. I was armed with an enormous platter of my infamous Hellfire Chicken Wings and a case of Snapple.
I had been willing to skip my weekly visit to Maine, but when I called to excuse myself from the Sunday festivities, Austin was adamant that this was not acceptable.
“The Sundays With Satan Short Story Series is my favorite feature on the blog,” The Modern Philosopher groaned from his end of the phone. “Besides, The Sweet Irish Girl is a huge fan, and there’s no way I’m letting her down.”
So it was decided. I was going to be there for a friend in need, and I put my Demons to work whipping up his favorite appetizer and fetching his favorite drink.
“Love the Star Wars jacket!” I complimented him as I strode into the living room and placed the wings on the table directly in front of the moping blogger.
“Thanks,” Austin mumbled without looking up from his phone. “I bought it at Walmart.”
I heard a gentle growl escape from my throat as I pushed the platter of wings a little closer so that their scent might hit his nose and wake him from his depressed slumber.
The growl was because I did not like Walmart. I had a sneaking suspicion that my former employer was behind the superstore’s success, because he knew that I would see the place as a Hell on Earth.
There is only one Hell, however, Modern Philosophers, and I am its one Lord and Master.
There are no rollbacks, blue light specials, or overly perky blue vested greeters in Hell.
But I digress. This short story is supposed to be about my efforts to cheer up Austin on this most painful of days.
Okay. Fine. This short story is about my friend’s anguish.
I can’t help it. I always want to make myself the lead.
It just makes sense.
As I’d suspected, the Moping Philosopher had allowed his supply of his favorite drink to run out. He had hit the bottle to deal with the pain, but had forgotten to secure new bottles.
Thank Heavens for me.
I had to laugh at that one. What wit.
Austin mumbled something about The Sweet Irish Girl’s having left earlier in the afternoon, and he just kept staring at his phone.
I glanced over his shoulder to see what was so mesmerizing, and discovered that he was looking at a photo of the lovely couple during happier times earlier in the week.
“I brought you wings and Snapple,” I informed him softly.
I was going to point out that I had also worn my finest Irish suit, made by a master tailor from the very same Irish capital from which his beloved hailed, but I didn’t think he’d even bother to look up to admire how perfectly it hung on my frame.
“Thanks,” he grunted.
“She really is beautiful,” I told the Modern Philosopher as I sat down on the other end of the couch and helped myself to a Snapple. “I don’t know how you got someone that wonderful to fall for you, but she’s definitely a keeper.”
“That means a lot, my friend,” I replied sincerely. “I get a good percentage of my business through references, so I will thank you in advance for all the new business your lie will bring me.”
Austin snatched a Snapple out of the cooler and held up the bottle. “If I’m going to be in Hell, everyone else might as well be, too!”
I tapped his bottle and we drank to his toast.
I really am an excellent friend!