Saturday, October 27, 2007

My Demonic Quarterly Review

[It's been a couple of weeks since I was on the receiving end of two anti-Jewish slurs, targeted at my aversion to spend from my dwindling coffers. From friends, I'll take it; from nearly-complete strangers, expect a quite rage. And thus I began to formulate a satire based on what some people must think my life is like. Here it is. Enjoy.]

I arrived home from class the other day just in time for my quarterly progress review. This was made clear by the whiff of sulfur that charged out of my apartment when I opened the door, the eerie music dominated by minor chords thundering out of my stereo, and the small demon perched on my kitchen counter, fussing with my toaster.

"Oh, is it that time already?" I asked, dropping my bookbag and flipping off the radio (66.6 YHELL FM, if you're inclined to listen). The demon looked up.

"It will be if this toast ever makes an appearance." He determinedly jammed a knife into the slits, absorbing the corresponding electric shock with a frisson of pleasure.

I peered over his thin shoulders. "You people made the thing."

"Doesn't mean that we can figure it out, though, does it?" The demon threw the knife down with a sigh and sprang from the countertop. "Look, I have very little time and quite a bit of paperwork, so I think we should get started." With that, he clamored on to my futon, poofing a pair of reading glasses on to his crooked nose and a legal pad into his claws.


"And take off that ridiculous disguise." He glanced down over his glasses with distaste. "It gives me the creeps."

"Alright." Shrugging, I slid my thumbs beneath my blonde wig, letting my springy locks jut forth, giving me that surprised, wind-tunnel look. The demon watched as I carefully pulled my blue contacts from my eyes, the cute nose prosthetic from my own hooked proboscis, and set them both in their corresponding cases.

"Is all that absolutely necessary?"

"To blend in, sure." I fluffed up my mousy hair then went to stand in front of him. "Well."

"Well," he repeated. "Well, I suppose we should start this off officially." He stood up on the couch, bring him up about to my clavicle. We performed the traditional salute: a few hip-swivels, some lyrics from a death metal song, that sort of thing. Then we both sat and got down to work.

"Look, I must be frank, here," the demon began. "My lord Satan (blessed be He) has been very displeased by the work you people have been doing up here."

"Has He?"

"Indeed. He figures that with so many of you infiltrating high levels of government and economics and entertainment, something must be happening." He consulted his notes. "And, to a certain extent, it has. Those of you in the White House have been doing a marvelous job. And He does have an entire Middle Eastern nation doing His bidding as we speak. But there are some of you who just aren't pulling your weight." The demon gave me a pointed look.

"I've been doing some things."

"'Some things.' 'Some things' is not enough to keep you on the payroll."

"I've always defended Israel."

"Not good enough," the demon said.

"Just the other week, two people accused me of being cheap. I'm keeping up the stereotype."

"Are you?" He lifted an eyebrow. "I know you've been passing pennies on the street, yet you haven't picked them up. Do you call that 'keeping up the stereotype?'"

"I suppose not."

"And," his reedy voice rose an octave, "are you aware that there are currently two dimes just sitting on your bathroom floor?"

"Yes." I frowned. "But I thought that if it were in my bathroom, it would--"

"No! Invest them in high interest accounts! Did you learn nothing during orientation?" I cast my gaze downward. He continued. "Look, I have a list here of what your ancestors used to do in His great name. Have you poisoned a well recently?"


"Kidnapped any Christian babies?"


"But you've had chances, haven't you"


"Hmm." His skin tone darkened to a deep scarlet. "Used the blood of the righteous to make Passover matzahs?"

"No. I went to Israel for Passover, though? Doesn't that count for anything?"

"Fine, I'll put a check there. Have you desecrated any holy water?"


"Spat on communion wafers?"


"Given the middle finger to any sort of Christian establishment?"

I started. "My ancestors used to do that?"

"No, but I thought I would throw you a bone." The demon raised his eyebrow again. "Well, have you?"

"Not strictly Christian institutions, no."

"Lent any money and charged a outrageous interest on it?"

"No." The demon threw down his pad in disgust.

"Do you see what I'm talking about? People like you are mooching off the Demonic Funds Department and sending Hell into a recessionary spiral! You should be out there, doing what you all were bred for, instead of spending our hard-earned money on trinkets like fake noses." He waved a claw in the direction of my discarded disguise. "Plenty of your people use their actual noses and still manage to do their jobs!"

I could feel the tears welling up and knew that my nose was being to run. I sniffed hard.

"Oh, by Lucifer's leathery wings, don't cry! Crying never helps!" The demon glared impotently as I began to sob in great, mucousy bursts. "Look, just stop-- I'll give you a satisfactory mark for this quarter if you'll just quit it." He scribbled something down on his pad, then poofed it out of existence. "Just try to do better. Kick a kid wearing a cross, trip a nun, steal money from a church's tithing basket. Anything! I don't want to have to fire you. You'll not find a better gig than this and the health benefits are just awful when you start playing for the other team."

I gave him a watery smile, nodded, and wiped my eyes with the back of my hands. The demon sighed with relief.

"There, that's better." He stood up, struggling for balance as his hooves sunk into my futon. "I'll see you next quarter. And I'll probably not be so lenient. I'm going to have Him on my tail as it is." He gave me an abbreviated salute, then, in a puff of sulfur, disappeared.

I sat for a moment, then got up, grabbing my industrial-strength Febreeze. A great grin broke out over my face, banishing my tears back into their ducts to be used for labor. Good ol' demons and their weakness for crying women.

Who said I wasn't evil?

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