Prologue- Please stop screaming I'm trying to eat
“Carrie! Lunch break. Don’t skip out this time though. Lunch break doesn’t mean clocking out.” I pout, dropping a spider to the floor and gently squishing it beneath a heel.
“You skip out once in a millennia and you get labeled a flake.” Klarik shakes his head at me, picking up a hand saw.
“You were born like, 200 something years ago, Care. You’ve only been here for like a hot second.” He turns to the damned, sizing him up. “Plus, you’ve ‘flaked’, as you like to call it, more than once. We’re demons, Care, not savages.” I snort, brushing off my shirt.
“Ya, sure. Anyway, I’ll leave it to you. Please keep it down though. I don’t leave the gag off when you’re eating.” Klarik groans, casually swinging the saw into the damned’s stomach for a second to free his hands. The damned screams, and I scowl, pointedly dangling the gag in front of Klarik. “Take the fucking morning shift if you don’t want the gag on. Some of us actually enjoy munchy time.” Klarik yanks the gag out of my hand, throwing it in the air. As it comes down it snaps to life, slithering over to the damned and covering his screaming mouth. I sigh and bow, backing up. “Thank you. Call me when Your shift is over.” Klarik waves me off and I close the door behind me, snapping. The name under torturer changes from mine to Klarik’s. I stroll over to the Cafeteria.
Now, before entering the Cafeteria, there’s a few things you need to know. One, never, and I mean never, float above the lunch demons. They can and will sling what may be sludge but is probably their dung at you. This is perfectly legal in hell and demons will laugh at you. If you leave then the next time you enter the Cafeteria you will be bombarded with sludge. If you stay and face the music you will also get sludge thrown at you. It is best not to hover above the lunch demons. Two, if you bring more food than you can eat then it is perfectly acceptable to eat it anyway. There are no garbage cans in hell and littering is punishable by sludge attack. Three, do not sit at a table. They are there for decoration. If you can not levitate your food like a proper demon you should not eat in the cafeteria. Four, tie back your hair and sharpen your horns. The Pixdes will try to steal your hair for their nests. Plus, Pixdies are not supposed to be in the Cafeteria, so chances are that if the Lunch Demons see it you’ll end up getting caught in the crossfire. Finally, number five. Do not try and socialize with other demons unless you have at least half the number of sharp parts they do. If you do they’ll try and skewer you. Of course, you’ll heal. Demons are immortal and for the most part invulnerable, but if they succeed its extremely embarrassing and you’ll probably have sludge thrown at you later.
“Carrie! Heyo! What are you doing on the floor? You know you can levitate in here without Petril getting on your ass.” Xerxes hollars across the Cafeteria. He deftly dodges a piece of sludge meant for a Pixde to his left. I float up to him, lounging in the air.
“You know it gets harder to levitate when you have something on your mind.” Xerxes nods, drifting closer with his food. I snatch a piece of cucumber from him and he sneaks a piece of my chicken.
“What is it? Petril giving you a hard time about the damned again?” I frown, nibbling on a piece of cucumber.
“What? No. Petril hasn’t bother me about that since I perfected my materialization. Petril has nothing on whats bogging me down. I know you’re gonna think this is stupid, but its just, well, I feel like I’m not doing anything with my life. Ya know? I mean, sure. Torturing Pedophiles and serial killers is cool and all, its just, I’m 200 years old and mama is starting to pester me about baby granddemons.” Xerxes pulls a face, snorting.
“Baby Granddemons? Carrie, you’re 200. You have so much death ahead of you. You have a shit ton of pedophiles and serial killers to torture before you have to even begin to think of baby granddemons. I don’t know where your mom is pulling that out of. Doesn’t she have other kids?” I shake my head, rolling onto my back. I summon a blanket and wrap myself in it.
“Nope. Even if she did I think she has a point. I haven’t even gone to a daemil yet. I mean, I just feel like theres nothing for me outside of work.” Xerxes gasps, mockingly putting on a hurt face.
“You mean to say that my company doesn’t do it for you?! An outrage if I’ve ever heard one.” I huff, rolling my eyes.
“You know thats not what I meant. I enjoy your company, Xerxes, but I don’t have anyone to go home to-” I put a hand up and glare at Xerxes. “And no, we can’t just have sleepovers every night. Thats not what I mean either.” Xerxes pouts, and I turn back onto my belly, propping myself up on my arms. “I mean I want someone that I can at least consider introducing to mama. I’m not ready for demonbabies, but I mean if I ever am it’d be a shame to not have any way of making that happen.” Xerxes grabs another piece of chicken.
“I mean, I could always-” I burst out laughing, dropping my levitation for a second. My food shakes on the way back up but when we reach Xerxes level again I sit up, straightening myself out.
“No. Xerxes, you don’t even like me.” Xerxes shrugs, smirking.
“I don’t have to like you to-”
“Stop. Please just stop. If mama could hear you now.” Xerxes puffs out his chest despite the glint of panic in his eyes.
“She’s not my mom!” His voice wavers, as if he expects her to pop up and swing sludge at him with the lunch demons.
“She might as well be! We were stuck together like glue for most of school. She considers you her long lost son.” Xerxes deflates, frowning.
“Ya, fine, whatever.” We sit in silence, eating for a bit while demons float around us. “You should go to Bram’s Daemil. Its this weekend. Tomorrow, if I read the spark right.” My eyes shoot open wide and I clutch my blanket close.
“Bram? As in the Bram?” Xerxes nods, grinning. “Xerxes, there’s no way I’d even get near the front of the line for that. When I said I wanted to go to a Daemil I meant like maybe, I don’t know, Krajiks Daemil? Someone more... my level. Bram controls the entire northern helscape. He doesn’t have time for a materialist torturer like me.” Xerxes sighs, grabbing my hand.
“You’re one of the best damn materialists we have. Even if you don’t get in you have to at least try and shoot your shot. Anyway, Daemils aren’t only for the host. People mingle. At a high profile Daemil like Bram’s you might even be able to score a sector leader like Petril.” Xerxes squeezes my hand in reassurance and I make a bleh face at the mention of Petril. Xerxes smiles, shaking his head. “Yeah, yeah. I know you detest Petril, but you’ve gotta admit, the position is nice. Mama would kill for you to bond with someone from that level.” I nod, eating the last of Xerxes cucumber.
“Fine, I’ll go.”