Thursday, October 22, 2015

Giving the Devil his due

Waco Tribune-Herald

Detectives are slowly piecing together clues to explain the uncanny disappearance of Roger Olson. They suspect foul play, but the evidence is elusive and circumstantial. Beyond cloven footprints in his front yard and a lingering sulfuric odor in his living room, they've had nothing more to go on. It's as if the earth opened up and swallowed him whole, without a trace.  

Only after they interviewed a local warlock did the clues begin to fall into place. In the weeks leading up to his mysterious disappearance, Roger experienced a series of freak accidental near misses. Cobras emerging from the WC at indiscreet times; appliances with minds of their own–as if possessed (memo to self: don't put your head inside a dryer to retrieve a sock); a sinkhole that opened up a few feet in front of his car; a little storm cloud that followed him around on clear days–raining hail and thunderbolts. 

Just last week, on Roger's daily walk, a farmer lost control of his combine. Only the timely intercession of a cow stepping in between Roger and the combine, saved him. The effect was unfortunate for the cow, although it did have the fringe benefit of facilitating an impromptu BBQ that evening.  

Roger was so rattled by all the close calls that he even contacted Sarah Michelle Gellar for tips on what to do, but she said it was well above her pay grade. She only plays a slayer on TV.  

Detectives were able to determine that these incidents began when Roger said Calvin's God was worse than Satan. According to the warlock, it wasn't Calvin's God who took umbrage at that comparison. Calvin's God never took Roger seriously. Roger was just a pawn on his chessboard. 

No, it was the Old Serpent who resented that comparison. He takes intense pride in his reputation as the baddest of the bad. The biggest meanie on the block. That's an image he's assiduously cultivated from time immemorial. A being than which none worse can be conceived. 

For an upstart little human to even hint at the existence of a more villainous rival was an intolerable affront to his infernal dishonor. And, need I remind you, the Old Serpent is not the forgiving type.

Detectives find that explanation a mite superstitious, but they have no other leads, and it does account for all the evidence. 

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