[LNHY/ACRA] The Daily Super Short-Short Story #58

Saxon Brenton saxon.brenton at uts.edu.au
Mon Nov 8 17:27:13 PST 2004

The Daily Super Short-Short Story #58
A Devil Came Down To Georgia 40
Last Time: Beel.gzip.bub, the Lord of the Files, arrived and upset the 
plans of everybody else.
     .oO( Okay. So. We're in Hell, ) thought Delroy through the pain. 
( I guess things *can* keep getting worse. )
     Strictly speaking TJ and himself should have been dying horribly 
of the poisons that Lisa had infected them with. However, after 
Beel.gzip.bub had teleported them all to his netherwordly demesne (in 
an overdone wash of flames, thought Delroy sourly), it had turned out 
that eternal suffering rather than actual death was the order of the 
eternity, and so the two of them now had to put up with the slow, 
unscratchable-itch-like discomfort of being envenomed without having 
to worry about actually dying of it. Oh joy.
     So here they were, hanging upside, forced to watch the entertainment.
     The entertainment consisted of Martin being tortured by demons in 
a particularly John Byrne-like fashion. Yes, he had a cackling demonic 
pillow sitting on his face, suffocating him. A pity Beel.gzip.bub had 
neutralised Martin's powers when he'd had him shackled to that rack, 
otherwise Martin could had grown breathing vents for himself else-
here. Meanwhile a demonic teddy bear was methodically disembowelling 
the young man. It wasn't a pretty sight, even with the inclusion of 
techno-organic bits.
     Beel.gzip.bub, meanwhile, was gloating. "You know," he said to 
Martin from where he was seated on his granite throne, "Dragging you 
down here wouldn't have been anywhere near so easy if you hadn't 
insisted on not losing your friends. The psychic inertia of the 
Benandanti is enormous, but you allowed yourself to be dragged along 
simply so that you could keep Lisa from harming them. And look what 
good it's done you. Oh, I do so love heroes; always throwing themselves 
into hopeless causes without thought of strategy or tactics." Then he 
looked thoughtful, and turned to look for Lisa and Kien, who were 
standing off to one side, also watching the show.
     "And what of you two?" asked Beel.gzip.bub. "Knowingly or not, 
you did help create the situation that was able to trap this placing-
piece of the Light. Some rewards are in order. Within reason of course. 
What would interest you? Wealth beyond the dreams of avarice? Perhaps a 
Title here in Hell?"
     Lisa and Kien exchanged glances. Lisa looked calculating, then 
said, "A payment for services rendered would be nice, and we can discuss 
what would be reasonable to all parties. However, I understand that 
there are always *independent* contracts for work going."
     Beel.gizp.bub nodded. Evil, by its nature, was fractious and 
always splitting off into newer and smaller groups. The various gangs 
of younger diabolicals, of which Lisa's group was but one, were numerous 
examples. The Dark Lords of Hell preferred a more feudal approach, with 
as many entities under their direct control as possible. However, they 
had also recognised long ago attempting to cement absolute control of 
the other factions of Evil before they had finished their war with Good 
simply gave their main opponents an advantage, As a result, the Dark 
Lords had simply made arrangements to subcontract out for certain 
mercenary groups among the independents of their own pantheon and those 
of other mythologies. If nothing else it gave them the options of 
plausible deniability if they ever needed it.
     However, before the negotiations could advance any further, a new 
voice said, "You know, that's, like, just so amazing uncool, man." 
    Beel.gzip.bub cringed in surprise and horror at the sight of a 
semitic looking young man in rainbow coloured tie-dyed jeans and 
t-shirt, and who was smoking a joint.
     "Jesus Christ!" exclaimed the demon lord.
     "That's right. So, like, you'd better let all these boys go before 
I lose my mellow and go righteous on your hash."
Tomorrow: You remember how Arthur was labelling the posts of the first 
story arc, in the Garden of Party Time, as probably being a danger to 
your soul if you read them? Yeah, well, tomorrow's post is going to be 
a bit like that.
The Daily Super Short-Short Story series created by Arthur Spitzer, and 
used with belated permission.
All main characters created by Saxon Brenton are Ask First Before Use 
for the duration of this storyline, then they'll probably go to Usable 
Without Permission.
Saxon Brenton     University of Technology, city library, Sydney Australia
     saxon.brenton at uts.edu.au
The Eyrie Archives of Russ Allbery which collect the online superhero
fiction of the rec.arts.comics.creative newsgroup can be found at:

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