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Justice From Above

by StellarWind Elsydeon

StellarWind Elsydeon Just what exactly drives the Angel of the Bottomless Pit to seek legal aid?
My office was the sixth office down the sixth corridor of the sixth floor. The fact that the numbers "6-6-6" shone brightly, in golden letters, on the door to my office, my last name and the reputation that I've gained as a brilliant little devil have become the subject of multiple internal jokes in the firm - but I never thought it would attract the attention of anything beyond that.

Boy, was I wrong.

One boiling midsummer morning, a gentleman dressed in a black Armani suit and sunglasses stepped into my office. He introduced himself in a very dignified manner, and presented me with a stylized calling card.

"Lucifer Diablo, Angel of the Bottomless Pit and Associates."

He told me he came to me in search of legal aid. When I asked him what would an Angel of the Bottomless Pit require legal aid for, he grinned devilishly at me and presented the following question in an ever-so characteristic nonchalant manner:

"Mr. Damon, what would you say if I would have offered you to sell me your soul?"

I told him, with a hint of amusement, that I am an attorney and that with all due respect, we don't have one of those. It's simply a privilege that the job does not entitle us to have.

"I have noticed that your aura is a little pale, Mr. Damon," he told me with a look of sincere concern "Maybe you should have that looked at. Either way, that isn't the reason I came to see you. I came to see you because you speak fluent Legalese. We need help from someone like you - you see, we're not really experts on the subject."

"Well, here's the proof that lawyers, in spite of what some rumors say, don't come from hell." I thought to myself, both amused and bemused by the turn of events.

"And also the proof that true Hell is up here on Earth." he said, as if he was reading my mind "Just between you and me, only you humans could think of things like bureaucracy for instance. Simply marvelous."

"Why me of all people?" I asked him "There are people - even in this firm - that have much more experience than I do."

"Well, we needed someone who was experienced but still young and dynamic. Besides, you were the easiest for us to reach. Your office number, you know. But, back to business."

He tapped the ground three times with his right foot - and a single page appeared in a cloud of flame, hovering over my desk. A few stray sparks flew onto a few drafts of important documents, lightly singing them in places that changed their meaning to be far more sinister than they were. Then, the flames gradually faded and the page floated down to rest on my desk, right before my eyes.

"Well, there's the problem," he said "What you see before you now is a draft of the standard soul-selling contract. We've been trying to get the format figured out for about five-thousand years and just between you and me, we want to change the image of the whole soul-selling dealie. We want to find a new target audience - one that is composed of people who aren't entirely desperate. Make the whole relinquishing-your-immortal-soul-to-the-underworld-for-eternity thing seem attractive, you know? We've already hired a marketing division to deal with the advertizing - but, again, between you and me, I've been around for long enough to see that the longer and more bombastic the contract is, the more likely it is that the clients will sign it - if only for the reason they have no idea what the devil (if you may pardon the pun) they're signing. Besides, rumors down there have it that your kind of people can tell other people to go to Hell in a way that will make them pack their suitcases and expect the trip of their lives. We wanted to see if it's true."

On first glance, I've noticed that their contract had a lot in common with a Graham Cracker - both were crispy and full of holes. It was so obvious that any idiot with basic knowledge in legal affairs could use the contract to extort them as much as he or she felt like... and I'm fairly certain that they really wouldn't have liked that.

I offered him a cup of coffee, and he nodded "Blacker than a moonless night, hotter and more bitter than Hell itself." he smirked - evilly, but in an amused manner, as if he was aware of some hidden meaning to his request. I made him a cup of coffee and he sat down, taking a long sip and nodding appreciatively.

"Well, our main problem here is this," I gave him a significant look "Everything is phrased too clearly. You have to confuse the opposition. Complex, high-level language, clauses referring to other clauses... One page may be clear and concise, but it's a little too clear and concise for our matter here. Ten pages at least, if we want this to be efficient enough. Secondly..." and before I knew it, I went to work as if taken by a frenzy. He sat and gazed at me patiently, completely fascinated by the jargon. I do not know how long has passed before I was finished - but finally, I placed a detailed, complex contract with enough pages to give a save-the-rainforests activist a heart attack on the desk between him and me - and I smiled.

"This is how it should look like," I told him "And this is only a first draft. I'm sure your experts can alter whatever clauses may be required for each specific case."

He read through the pages. After three of them, he broke.

"PERFECT!" he cried out happily and his glowing red eyes lit up so brightly that they completely melted his sunglasses. He sighed in frustration, tossing the useless, molten lump of plastic out the window and creating a brand new pair out of raw firmament. "You've done a GREAT job, Mr. Damon. I do not know how to express my gratitude."

"No thanks are needed," I told him "Greater and smarter lawyers than I have made deals with the devil before... Although I don't think any of them took the expression quite that literally."

"You'll find that your bank account has swelled significantly," he told me with a smile "They say that money is the root of all evil, so needless to say we have tons of the stuff. We don't spare resources, you know. It's been great doing business with you, Damon. If you'll continue like this, you have one hell of a brilliant career ahead of you."

And with that, he stood up, turned around and left the office, humming Metallica's "Devil's Dance" to himself. Say what you want of the Devil, at least his taste in music is good.

I leaned back in my leather chair and waited for my next meeting for that day. She arrived about five minutes later - a young, bright-eyed blonde in a tailored white suit.
"Angelina Celestial, Guardian Angel." she shook my hand with warmth that could not have possibly been human "We've received some wonderful recommendations about you from your last client. We've been wondering if you could help us tie a few loose ends with the terms of acceptance into Heaven... With all the religions that are running around in the world nowadays, it all got a bit too complicated for us..."
  1. StellarWind Elsydeon
    StellarWind Elsydeon
    That was sort of the idea, so thank you much for ze compliment. ^^

    (Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams are massive inspirations of mine)
    Nov 17, 2013
  2. baratron
    I still think this sounds like something by Neil Gaiman :).
    Nov 17, 2013