Disclaimer: Don't own Devil May Cry. Couldn't afford the insurance.
Because what happens when the people Dante hangs up on call back?
Trish did the little kick thing she'd picked up from watching Dante do it and the phone flew into her hand an instant after it started ringing. "Devil Nev…" No, wait; they'd changed the name back. She kept forgetting. People were confused when she answered with the new name: Dante'd made a name for himself and his shop in the underworld. "Devil May Cry."
Dante had described how he wanted the phone answered to her in great detail, but she'd rolled her eyes. It had seemed so obvious, like she'd done it before.
Name of the shop. Don't volunteer any information, don't say anything else until they do or don't give the password. If they don't, hang up. They're either a crank, an idiot, or tabloid reporters again, and they had to keep the line free in case there were important calls, like some muscle using their last change at a payphone in the middle of nowhere after what had seemed like a simple job turned out not to be a wanna-be gang after all.
"Can you please let me speak to the So… Dante?" A bookish voice. No password. That bit-off phrase was almost certainly Son of Sparda.
Her instructions in this case were to show no mercy. "Please hold." She stabbed the button on the multi-line phone system Dante had finally given into temptation and gotten just so he could do this to people.
She smirked at it for the next fifteen minutes: then she got another call. "Devil May Cry."
Password, check. "Yep, that's us."
An old woman, babbling with gratitude. She had to hand it to Dante; he'd built up one hell of a network. She was amazed how many people who needed got the password. The Underworld, cops who had seen a little too much and passed on 911 calls, parents passing it on to children… "Don't worry, ma'am. Where are you?"
"I'll be there in five minutes." She tossed the phone back in the cradle and yelled up the stairs. "Beowulf? I'm heading off. Can you get the phone?"
He thumped down the stairs in his work clothes. He might look like a demonic version of the flying monkeys from the Wizard of Oz demonform, but he looked like a boxer or a modern-day Visigoth warrior as a human.
The tribes that had sacked Rome, later. Trish would wonder if Mundus was prescient if he hadn't failed to see Sparda's and her own rebellion coming at all. He nodded to her in acknowledgement.
"Okay, time for me to head out then. I'll be back in five." She ran out the door, leaped onto her bike, and roared off.
The hold light turned off and the phone rang again as soon as she was out the door. Beowulf picked up in his huge hands, muttering to himself. Fragile plastic thing… what was wrong with clockwork? This modern stuff broke after a few months. Temen ni Gru had still worked mostly fine two thousand years later. With no maintenance. That was what human slaves were for. "Yes?" Dante hadn't bothered to ask Beowulf to follow a formula. He would have found it insulting.
The traitor's son had some sense, at least. And some consideration, not asking him to go fight against his former Master's troops as the others were willing to do.
Some people had honor.
"Is this the Son of Sparda?" A human, male, slightly frazzled-sounding. Not the sort of raw panic and terror Beowulf had used to bring down upon them, just annoyance and worry about something.
"No." Calling him that traitor's son… human probably didn't know any better. Beowulf snorted. "Password."
"…I need a password?"
Beowulf hung up. "Alastor!" He yelled into the other room.
He heard Alastor drop to the floor from where he was roosting, listening to one of those miniature music things. "Yes, Sir?" He poked his head around the door.
"Ta…" the phone rang. Beowulf sighed, aggravated. "Yes?" This had better be good, the tone implied.
"…how can I find out the password?"
Beowulf snorted. "Ask somebody." He slammed the phone down on the cradle.
Smashing them both. Alastor looked away, trying to pretend he hadn't seen that.
Beowulf stared at it. "Piece of human crap…" He went to go get another one and handed it to Alastor, who took it and plugged it in silently. There was no reason to tell Nevan about this.
The phone rang again as soon as it was plugged in. "Devil May Cry," Alastor answered it happily. If someone called before Trish, Dante, or Nevan got back, he might be able to go and fight!
"Who can I talk to in order to get the password?"
"This isn't a switchboard!" Alastor hung up and glared at it. A call, and it had to be some idiot who didn't know how things worked!
It rang again. "Devil May Cry."
A panicked female voice. With the password! This was more like it. "They're called Plasmas… can I have the address?"
Alastor flew out of there like a bat out of hell.
Trish saw him fly by on her way back. "Busy night…" Dante'd called her before she left, a charity hospital had been infested and he was putting wards on the place while he was at it. A place with so much human pain and suffering drew them like flies to, well… rotting meat.
The director had been pleading with him to accept payment for everything in the background, and Dante had had to pause to tell him no.
Metropolis Children's Hospital had just done a major fundraiser, with 300 million dollars in donations. They needed 900 million to build an essential new facility: the city was getting bigger all the time.
Why did doing good have to cost so much? She parked her bike and ran in.
She kicked the desk as she jumped over it and into the chair.
The receiver landed in her hand. Score! 267 consecutive and counting! "Devil May Cry." She brushed her hair back and set the Sparda by the side of her desk.
"It'svitalyoulistenthefateoftheworldis…" That same guy from earlier.
"Sorry, no password or evidence of emergency, no service." No saying demon or anything supernatural on the line. If this guy was paparazzi instead of a 'prophecy nut,' he'd have a tape recorder going.
"But I have evi…"
"Screaming is evidence, mister. Now clear the line. There might be people with real emergencies trying to get through."
"But it is absolutely vital I speak to the Son of Sparda! There is a prophecy the world will end at midnight unless it is prevented!"
Trish rolled her eyes. Mundus didn't want to end the world: he wanted to rule it. "Midnight where?" She asked, contempt apparent.
Trish hung up. And pressed buttons with a pen to activate the other wonderful feature of this new type of phone: call blocking.
The phone rang. "Devil May Cry," Trish answered, sighing.
"Cold hard cash," the smoke-weathered voice on the other end said promptly.
See? That was how things should be done. "Where's the place?"
Two hours later Dante got back, Nevan on his back. He put he down and the phone rang. "I'll get it."
"I'll get it, sugar," she said at the same time.
His hand landed on top of hers and they looked at each other.
She slid her hand out, winked, and sashayed up stairs.
He watched her. Hips. "Devil May Cry."
"Cold hard cash," somebody panted over a cell phone. Another job? Fall was always busy season, he'd sometimes go days without a call in the spring… except during Spring Break. "I absolutely must speak with the Son of Sparda."
Dante's eyes narrowed. "That's the password for normal callers. People who say they know all about Sparda need to prove they do by answering a question."
Damn his father for being so damn helpful so many texts talked about him saving the world. For free. Dante hated crackpots who thought they'd discovered some threat to the world by decoding some drunkard's ramblings and thought they could order him around like he was Buffy and they were a Watcher.
"…what's the question?" Yep, wanna-be back-seat hero.
"What was his wife's name?"
Dante hung up. And blocked the call.
Damn fragile modern phones.