Highway to Hell!
Highway to Hell!
Andi let out a frustrated groan and slammed her fist down on her alarm clock, shutting it off. She looked to see what time it was and let out a longer and even more frustrated groan.
Every day she was reminded how her life was literally over, and that when she would die she'd be sent to Hell. Hell, of all places! She still couldn't believe it. Andi buried her head in her hands and tried to think about how all of this could have happened to her. Of course; she had tried to help Sam out of his devil deal and wound up being betrayed by Steve because "God works in mysterious ways." Well whatever those mysterious ways were, they just cost her soul. Andi reached over to the other nightstand and grasped a framed picture. It was a picture of her and her mom, taken back when she was only five years old at a park in her old neighborhood. Andi smiled at the picture, remembering the day it was taken like it was only yesterday.
"Can't catch me, Mom!" Andi playfully laughed as she ran around a tree. Her mother responded with her own laugh as she ran to catch up; Andi was pretty fast for a five-year-old. Andi looked behind her and saw that her mom had vanished. Andi stopped for a moment and walked back towards the tree. As she did this her mom appeared from behind the tree and tackled Andi to the ground, both of them laughing as they fell. Andi's mom then proceeded to tickle Andi's sides, making her laugh uncontrollably. Tears began to stream down her face because she was laughing so hard. Her mom stopped when a bright flash caught their attention. Looking up from the ground, the two of them spotted Andi's dad holding up a camera.
"Sorry, was I interrupting something?" he asked, brandishing a wide grin.
Andi placed a hand on the picture and slowly ran her hand across it. "I'm sorry, Mom," she whispered. "Sorry I can't join you in Heaven when I die."
A tear escaped her and rolled down her cheek, landing on the portrait. More tears started to fall when Andi's cell phone began to vibrate. Andi pulled out her phone and saw she had a text. It was from Sam:
Be there to pick you up for work in a few minutes.
Andi dried her tears and began to get ready to work at the place most of her co-workers considered to be hell on Earth.
"Sam! Andi! Burt! Ben! My office, now!" Ted ordered as they walked into the Work Bench.
"What did we do this time?" Sam asked in a casual tone, completely used to Ted's outrages by this point.
"You think I don't know what's been going on these past few months? How you all have been disappearing from the bench for hours at a time during your shifts?"
"I don't know what you're talking about," Sam and Andi denied in unison.
"Yeah, like that doesn't make you two seem suspicious," Ted said, leaning back in his chair.
"Why do you care anyway? You have a whole bunch more employees here at the bench. What could possibly go wrong if four of us vanish off the grid for a few hours?" Sock asked Ted, getting in his face a bit in a vain attempt to be intimidating.
"Because, Burt, knock down one domino and the others follow. If people were to discover how you've been skipping work they'd think they could do it too. I just can't have that, which is why I decided to do something about it."
"Ummm… What exactly did you do?" Ben asked him uneasily.
"I was hoping you'd ask that. I had guards placed around every exit to this building. No employee gets in or out without my say or unless they are helping out a customer."
"Ted, where'd you get the money to hire guards?" Sam questioned.
"I know a guy," was Ted's vague response. "Now get back to work, all of you," he ordered sternly.
"Fine. You're the boss," Andi said with a twinge of anger in her tone.
As the four left his office, Ted began to lean back more on his chair. "Ahh, it's good to be the boss—WOAH!" His chair tipped over and he crashed onto the floor. His coffee tipped over his desk and poured all over him. "AHHH!" he screamed as it finished pouring out.
Andi was trying her best to hold all her laughter in until they were all a good distance away. "How did that happen?" she asked, finally starting to laugh.
"Wellll…" Sam began, and then just pointed to his head.
"You used your mind? That was awesome!" Sock shouted in praise, giving Sam a high five.
"Mind?" Andi asked, confused.
"Yeah, I have these weird powers that seem to come and go whenever they please. In truth, I've only used them a couple of times."
Andi was about to ask a few more questions when she tripped over something.
"Sam, I think this is yours," she said, acknowledging the vessel she fell over. Sam sighed and picked up the box containing the vessel. He, Andi, Sock, and Ben headed for the storage room, but when Andi and Sam entered it the Work Bench faded out and was replaced by a new setting.
"What the hell?"
"That is correct, Andi!" the familiar and unwelcome voice of the Devil said from behind the two.
"Why did you teleport us here of all places?" Sam asked, referring to the strip club they were now in.
"Now, Sam. Is that anyway to greet your old man?" the Devil chuckled. Sam only rolled his eyes and took a seat; Andi sat down next to him.
"Why'd you bring Andi along? You never teleported someone along with me before," Sam said.
"Why don't you try opening the box first?" the Devil asked, smiling mischievously.
Sam rolled his eyes and tried to open the box, but it wouldn't open. "What the?" He tried again, but the box still wouldn't open for him.
"Maybe we need a woman's touch. Andi, why don't you take a shot?"
Andi gave the Devil a nasty look, but nonetheless agreed; the box opened with ease.
"What's going on here? Why would the vessel open for her and not me?" Sam questioned.
"Because, Sam, this vessel is special. It'll only work for Andi."
"Wait… Are you saying…?"Andi started.
"Yes, Andi. Congratulations, you're my new Reaper!" the Devil said with a gleeful look on his face.
"HELL NO!" Sam objected at the top of his voice.
"Relax, Sam. No need to be jealous. You're still a Reaper. I just figured having two Reapers would get things done faster than one."
"That and you want to screw Andi over, now that you own her soul," Sam said with a scornful look.
"Yeah, that too," he laughed. "Wait till you get a look at the vessel."
Andi looked back at the box and pulled out the vessel.
"This is it?" she said, observing the vessel. "A child's lullaby?" she said, almost unimpressed with the children's toy she was grasping. "What's so special about it?" she asked him.
The Devil grinned once more and slid over a file to Andi. "Meet your first soul," he told her.
Andi opened the file and her heart nearly stopped. "This can't be right. You're messing with me!"
"Am I, Andi?"
"Andi, who is it?" Sam curiously asked.
"It's… It's… My mother."