David Woodleaf stood on the deck of Helen’s San Francisco Home on Mount Davidson. He had recently written a story called “The Story of Helen” and posted it on his fake website in which he pretended to be the Juniper Hills Town Council. As Woodleaf looked up at the stars in the sky, God bristled with rage. This man who refused to work and lived on disability and by tricking people to allow him to move into their homes was a complete waste of space and should be removed from the general population based on certain threats made against Helen in the story. God lifted his arm to raise a thunderbolt to strike him dead when Satan appeared and grabbed God’s raised arm.
“Stay your lighting strike! You want him dead, but I see the absurdity of his situation. I would like, if you would allow me, to make him into a comic play.”
Satan transported himself to the deck at the San Francisco home and landed upon the wooden deck railing. Woodleaf was so startled that he took a step back in surprise.
“Hello, Hello!” The Devil greeted him cheerfully. Taking a seat balanced on the deck rail, the bright red creature who was half man and half goat crossed one of his legs with the cloven hoof over the other leg.
Quickly recovering his composure, Woodleaf wanted to give Satan a piece of his mind.
“It’s about time you showed up,” complained Woodleaf, “considering the number of times I have tried to summon you.”
“I am a creature of great whimsy,” replied Satan coyly. “I don’t come just because someone calls me, but only when I moved by an idea. I have a plan for you.”
David Woodleaf was not really phrased by this demonic apparition. In accordance with his drug taking schedule this hallucination was common place. But, part of his mind hoped that this could be the real deal at last.
“I know you want to be famous,” explained Satan, “and you shall be famous as the most ridiculous man who ever existed.”
“That is not what I have in mind.” snapped Woodleaf. “I maintain a serious demeanor at all times.”
“Brilliant move,” declared Satan and then he erupted in so much laughter that he nearly fell from the railing.
Unsettled from his perch Satan began to levitate in the air around the area of the deck.
“I have so many plans and ideas for you, David. We must have a brain storming session right now!”
“Come inside,” said Woodleaf, inviting the Devil into Helen’s house.
Once inside Woodleaf thought he should be generous host.
“Would you like some Diet Coke?” he asked the dark lord. “I only eat and drink foods that are white, but I have this open two liter bottle which is hopefully not too flat.”
David opened the refrigerator and peered at the contents, sincerely and thoughtfully.
Satan laughed again. “How very kind of you! I don’t eat or drink anything myself.”
“I sometimes pretend to drink red wine,” he added after a brief pause, “but I only spit it out in my napkin when no one is looking.”
“I have a special gift for you, David. This is Cracky. He is a parrot from the Amazon Rain Forest, and he is going to be your best friend.”
Satan waved his hand and a large bird appeared. The bird was a macaw which is similar to parrot, but more trainable.
“Cracky is a published author in Germany,” explained Satan. “He wrote a book called Zen and The Art of Sunflower Seeds which plagiarized Less Than Zero. He has been trying to come up with future book ideas. I am sure a collaboration between you and this parrot will yield some smashingly outrageous ideas for new historical novels and make both of you very rich and famous.”
Woodleaf was beginning to feel uneasy with Satan’s lack of unease. It was time for Satan to leave, he decided.
“Thank you very much for the parrot. I hope you have a wonderful rest of the evening. I really must get back to internet trolling.”
“But I am tried,” replied Satan. “What I really need is a nice long nap.”
And with that the Devil walked into David’s bedroom and closed the door behind him, leaving David and Cracky alone in the living room. As Cracky flew around he noticed Helen’s home was filled with boxes. The boxes were imported by Woodleaf because he was a Box Salesman. He did not sell very many of the boxes, but he was always working on new concepts to make the boxes sell. His normal modus operandi was to claim the square cardboard boxes which he sold online could do more than just hold random items. Curing cancer by looking into an empty box and wishing the cancer away (very hard) was an example one of the scams he had come up with. David was trying to establish his product as a brand name. “It’s not just a box, it’s a Woodleaf Original” was another slogan he had coined.
Woodleaf felt puzzled and confused. Was he to believe Satan had just gone into his room and locked the door? He heard the button click. He gently applied pressure to the door, but it did not yield. It was indeed locked from the inside. He was about to knock, but he stopped himself. He did not want to angry Satan who had shown more enthusiasm about his career than anyone else. This whole experience was clearly a hallucination. Satan would be gone in the morning. The only other bedroom was Helen’s room and she was asleep. Woodleaf settled himself down on the couch and turned on the TV. Late night programming was so boring that he was soon asleep. Cracky roosted on top of a pole lamp and put his head under his wing.
Years pass, but Satan never does leave the house. Woodleaf was not really aware of Satan on a day to day basis, but sometimes he would stop and wonder what he did to deserve this unfortunately situation.