“I really enjoyed your column on The Good Men Project this week about the time you met Dr. Dre,” The Devil complimented me as he handed me a Snapple. “I’ve never actually met the man. Is he as cool as he seems?”
I accepted the iced tea from my house guest in the impeccably tailored suit, and nodded in response as I took a long sip of the best stuff on earth.
“Very cool, actually,” I answered once I had swallowed my drink. “It would’ve been awesome just to hang around him for a few months on the set.”
Lucifer adjusted his tie as he pondered the snappy retort that I just knew had to be coming.
“Maybe some of that cool might’ve rubbed off on you,” he remarked. “Clearly, nothing got transferred in that one meeting.”
I let out a ridiculously loud fake laugh and then shot him an icy glare, which The Prince of Darkness immediately melted with his Hellfire stare.
“He did call me one sick mother@#$%^&, though,” I reminded him of Dre’s compliment about my writing.
“It’s a pity what happened to your movie deal,” Satan plowed on as if he hadn’t even heard my comment. “The screenplay he was going to buy was .33 Reverse Gunther, right?”
“I like it, too,” The Devil assured me as he reached for a Snapple of his own. “So much violence and horrible language. Plus, there’s that incredible twist ending that no one sees coming. My kind of movie.”
Lucifer’s words stunned me. We didn’t often talk about my screenwriting career, and I wasn’t even aware that he’d read Gunther.”
“When did you read it?” I had to ask.
“It came across my desk years ago, probably around the same time you met with Dre,” The Prince of Darkness answered nonchalantly. “I dusted it off last night and read it again, though. Still holds up all these years later. I’m surprised you’ve never asked me to square things with the producers who screwed you over. I’d love to do that for you.”
The fire in his eyes made it obvious that he was dying for me to give the go ahead to exact my revenge, but my mind couldn’t get past the first part of his reply.
“How did you get a copy of Gunther fifteen years ago?” I asked in utter befuddlement.
Satan raised an eyebrow like he couldn’t believe how clueless I was. He took a long sip of his Snapple before he deigned to answer my question.
“I thought you would have figured out by now that Hollywood is a ring of Hell,” he told me with disdain as if this were common knowledge available to anyone with access to a Bible or a map of Southern California.
“I had no idea,” I admitted, “but it makes a lot of sense.”
“Since I am the ruler of Hell, that makes me something akin to the Eternal Studio Head of Hollywood,” The Devil boasted like someone trying to make sure everyone within earshot knew he was a Hollywood power player. “That means any exciting screenplay that comes into play eventually ends up on my desk. I don’t read them all, but the ones marked for excessive violence and strong language usually make my short list.”
“You never stop amazing me,” I had to admit even though I felt myself die just a little inside for saying so.
“I already know your answer, but you just give the word, and I will get that project green lighted for you,” Lucifer offered sincerely.
“Thanks, but you know my policy about deals with you,” I answered nicely, but firmly.
“Billy Dee and Bruno would have some choice words for you about that decision,” The Prince of Darkness further flattered me by working two characters from my screenplay into the conversation. “I completely understand, though.”
I’m glad that Satan understood because to tell the truth, I had no idea why I didn’t take him up on his offer…
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