By: Isabella Kraft

The Devil Made Me Do It + Part 1

"Look I don't care how many people you've brutally murdered, if you want to see the Lord of Darkness you need to have an appointment!"

The dark cloud form of another pushy condemned soul bristled in irritation and mumbled an incomprehensible amount of curses in his general direction. The demon, for his part, allowed himself to smirk visibly before pointing the dark mass of rotten human ideals to a seat in the waiting room. "Jesus -- serial killers now'a days... draw a couple of pentagrams in their victims blood and they think we owe them something!"

The phone rang; tossing the snake like mass of his hair over his shoulder- wings twitching a little- he picked it up. "Seventh layer of Hell, how may I help you?"

"Duo." The voice still gave him shivers, he could only imagine what it did for humans. Flat, clear, damn near apathetic, yet always amused at the same time.

"Ye--yes boss?"

"Cancel my three o'clock, and if you could....can you please give Heero something to torture for a few centuries..?"

Duo glanced across the room at the dark mass he had just dismissed earlier- now trying to start a revolution in the waiting room. He sighed -- newbies. Like he was the first 'bad-ass' to try to overthrow the devil...

"Yeah, sure, no problem. I got one all picked out... What's the matter? He's not bugging you again is he?"

The Devil let out a heavy moan, "I swear God sent him down here to piss me off... He just doesn't get it!"

Duo snickered, "Well that's an evil minion for you. Ummm... what should I tell the Hitler-san... He does get so pissed off when you cancel."

The Devil paused, "Move him back to Friday, and tell him I'm going up top for the rest of the day and if he doesn't like it, well, I hear the orthodox Sabbath ceremonies are quite lovely this time of year."

Duo chuckled, "Oh, you are good, your evilness"

"I know, I know."

+

Trowa Barton watched the thin trail of smoke waft away from the small stick of rolled herbs and up to the heavens. He made three quick bows in front of the image of Buddha, placed the incense into the pot of sand and began to meditate.

Today he was meditating on water. The Tao Te Ching said be like water. Water is passive, water is gentle, but water conquers, erodes, water is both violent and nurturing.

Be like water......

Water... clear... gentle... patient...

Damn he really had to go to the bathroom.

No, no he must control....Control... Focus.

..................

..........................

No use -- the more he focused on not having to pee, the more urgent his need became. Crap, he was no good at this monk thing. Maybe he should give it up and open a flower shop or something. Flowers were nice. He liked flowers. Maybe he should meditate on that.

Yes, screw water, meditate on flowers. Flowers are pretty.

A storm of giggles interrupted his meditation. "Oh great," he thought. The girls again. Every day a new batch of girls, tugging their boyfriends along to get love charms from the temple. He sighed, his hot breath blowing his hair up away from his face only to have it float lazily back down into place.

Then he got up and did his duty as miko. He smiled, told them elaborate lies about the creation and power of the charms, and took their money.

It was a nice routine. In an amusing little game, sometimes he would tell one girl one thing, then turn around and tell her friend something completely different about the same item. They never questioned him because, well, he was a monk and monks never lied.

"Yes, this here is made with slug musk and horse hair."

"Slug musk!" the girls chirped. "Ewwwwwww..."

"No, no," Trowa assured them. "Slugs are very passionate creatures, slug musk is a very strong aphrodisiac."

The girls blinked, "Really?"

He nodded, and noted with a chuckle that none of them would ever look at a slug the same way again.

He shifted through the next group of highschool girls, listening to their endless chatter and responding to their problems with cryptic quotes from one philosopher or another that really had nothing to do with anything. But the girls all sighed, nodded, and agreed about how very wise Trowa was and how very disappointing it was that he was a monk.

Then an older figure caught Trowa's eye. He was standing toward the back, dressed all in black, the first few buttons of his fine satin button up shirt unbuttoned exposing a certain amount of his smooth pale hairless skin. The creature removed his black sunglasses, lit a stick of incense, bowed three times, then stepped back and just stood there as if transfixed by the smoldering herbs.

That was definitely not a highschool boy, Trowa noted. Oh, his soft gold hair, liquid turquoise eyes, and pale skin gave him the appearance of being young. But his mannerisms, the way he carried himself and stood deep in thought suggested he was much older. Some lingering girls cooed and pointed, giggling and blushing, but dared not approach the mysterious figure.

"Trowa, Trowa! What does this one do?" a frequent customer asked him, tugging on his sleeve like a little lost child.

"Oh that? That's a........good luck charm."

"Honto? How does it work?"

"Well....you put it in your shoe at the end of each day and each day- if you wear those shoes of course- you'll have good luck."

The girl was fascinated, now cradling the charm in her hands like it was gold. "How much Trowa-san?"

"Uhhhhh....for you 1000 yen," Trowa smiled.

The girl blushed deeply and quickly handed Trowa her money, rushing off to tell her friends about her encounter with the hot monk.

"And people call me evil,"

Trowa looked up, the stranger was now standing at his little booth, watching him curiously.

"Excuse me?"

"You just sold that girl a piece of charcoal for 1000 yen..."

Trowa snickered, "Well, to some people charcoal is magic."

The stranger smirked and leaned on the counter, his fingers running over the trinkets and spells displayed there. "I do believe you've been lying about all of this... slug musk," he laughed.

"Can I help you with something, sir?" Trowa asked, wanting to get to the point as quickly as possible.

The stranger straightened immediately, brushing off his black attire, replacing his sunglasses and grinning broadly. "I'm looking for something interesting."

"Ah well... we have a number of lovely charms and--"

"No, I already found what I'd like to purchase."

"All right... Well, what is it?"

"Have lunch with me."

Trowa blinked, "Excuse me?"

"Have lunch with me," the stranger repeated.

"I can't do that... I'm a monk."

"Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't realize consumption of food was forbidden now.."

"Well... it's not... but... I can't leave the temple unattended..." Trowa trailed off, fiddling with the hem of his shirt nervously like the blushing school girls he cheated everyday.

"Come on, be naughty with me," the stranger teased with a lewd wink. "We'll be real quick."

+

Three "real quick" hours later Trowa found himself discussing religious philosophy with the blonde stranger over a cup of coffee. He found his new companion completely engaging and seductive. Quatre either had similar thoughts, or was a helpless flirt... possibly both.

Quatre Raberba Winner was twenty three years old, a foreigner from what he called the Holy Land- the less holy part of it anyway-, enjoyed music and art, and was in Japan on a spiritual journey.

"You see," Quatre unique voice smoldered darkly. "I'm really quite a religious person, and I've always been fond of the beauty in the Mountains up here." He placed his soft hand over Trowa's at the middle of the table, stroking down the knuckles with a seductive little smirk.

Quatre was definitely a helpless flirt.

Trowa cleared his throat, "Really... I'm not too familiar with religions in that area... Are you Christian?"

Quatre shook his head, "Oh I was for a short time, but the Catholic Church lost some of it's....how should I put this?.....zeal? a while ago, and well Protestants are no fun at all...."

"I see... Then you're Muslim?"

Quatre laughed, "There's a little bit of me in every religion....but no, I think I'm a faith of my own.."

"Ahhh..." Trowa nodded, that made sense. He didn't think Muslims were so....open. "The path to spiritual enlightenment is a solitary one."

Quatre's eyes twinkled brightly, he sighed contentedly and grinned at him. "You're so wonderfully delicious, Trowa."

Trowa blushed and stared down into his shadowy coffee reflection. "Aa..thank you. So.....what do you do?"

"Well.....I suppose you could say I'm a....bureaucrat."

"Aa....so then you work a lot with people."

"More than people like to admit," Quatre snickered.

"A job like that....must get stressful."

"At times," Quatre admitted. "But then that's what evil minions are for."

+

"Heero, honestly take it from me....I'm your friend."

"Blah,"

"Okay fine I'm not your friend. I hate you, despise you and wish you horrible death, better?"

"Hn.."

"Good....look I know your smitten...but you have to understand---"

"He'll never understand Maxwell."

"Shutup Wufei, don't you have some pagan to tease or something?"

"No, I need Quatre's approval on these plans first."

Duo sighed, pushing his bangs out of his face and glaring at Wufei, "You're running up Hell's budget again, Chang. Suck-up."

"You're just upset that I'm more efficient at being evil then you."

"You are not more efficient at being anything than me!!! How many souls do I make wait in that room for hours everyday Heero?"

"Scores of them, Duo,"

"And what is playing on the TV in the waiting room??"

"Barney....sometimes CNN.."

"EXACTLY! Now that's evil Chang, don't talk to me about evil..."

"Especially behind Evil's back...it's very rude."

They all turned towards the door to find a very amused Quatre staring back at them, leaning up against the door frame trying to pull off his usual nonchalant style but failing miserably. He was glowing like a small child.

"Hey, High Prince of Darkness. How was your afternoon?"

Quatre strolled in the direction of his office, humming to himself, eyes half close in something of a deeply lethargic haze. "Delightful," he sighed. "I should do that more often. In fact," he said, stopping just outside his door, "I think I will."

Heero wasted no time, "Quatre, great one, how about dinner tonight?"

"Heero.."

"There's a very interesting show on the third layer... something about boiling the skin off unchristian babies.."

"Heero..."

"And, well, I can get us frontrow--"

"Heero... I'm touched, really I am... really... and I don't know how to say this, but I need my space....this friendship really isn't working out..."

"You're breaking up with me?"

Quatre sighed, "Had we been dating in the first place, then, yes, this would be a break up. Heero... I want you to know that I hope we can still be strangers. Now... get out."

"Quatre... We---"

"No, no...see you're missing the point here.... 'We' is now an officially forbidden pronoun. I don't want to hear it ever again. I especially don't want to hear it coming from you with reference to me. I'm really not interested Heero... You're incredibly sweet, but let's face it -- I'm the devil."

Heero blinked, "I fell from grace for you..."

"Yes, yes, and it was all quite touching, gave the gossip column a centuries worth of material, but please Heero....go away."

With that Quatre promptly closed his door and collapsed into his highback leather chair. "Fa... I'm the lord of Hell. Like I couldn't get front row seats to a boring old infant boiling if I wanted them..."

A few seconds later Duo poked his head through the door, "Awfully persistent, isn't he?"

"Aa," Quatre nodded. "When's the next scheduled Holy War? I figure I can at least get rid of him when he goes to win souls for me....."

"Uhhhh...sorry there have been some serious delays in the next Holy War... Religious apathy and all..."

Quatre moaned and forced his eyes shut, "I don't know how much more I can stand he so... so... sweet, eck. But not in the cute virginal way..."

At the very thought, Quatre's eyes lit up again and a happy smile spread across his face. He forgot all about Heero as his mind wandered off to a certain green eyed monk...

"Ahhhh... I assume his Evilness had an enjoyable afternoon with the sweet virginal types..."

"Not exactly," Quatre smiled.

"What no orgy?....If you don't mind me saying so, Sir, I think you're in a slump."

Quatre blinked, "Slump? Me?"

"Yes Sir," Duo nodded. "Think about it -- when was the last time you did something truly evil?"

"George W. Bush is in the White House isn't he?"

"Ha...good point....but I mean historically evil.."

"So, what, you want a plague or something? Want me to open the gates of hell and release horrible evils on the world?"

"It wopuld be the social event of the season, for sure.."

Quatre rested back in his chair, "I'll think about it Duo, but right now I have something more simple in mind."

"Like?"

"A conquest."

"Blah, bor-ing! What's one more immortal soul on your trophy case?"

"True," Quatre noted. "But this is a very specially soul."

"Oh my dear sweet demon ass.... You have a crush!!"

One lazy eye popped open. "I do not."

"Yes, you do!" Duo accused. "You're practically glowing! Who is it? Who's the corruptible little morsel?"

"You won't leave until I tell you, will you?"

"Nope! Come on, give me a name I'll pull up his record see what his weak points are!!"

"No, I don't want to do it that way this time. Look at Heero -- I see him standing at God's right hand and all, corrupt him but good, and bang! he's permanently humping my leg. If I have to deal with two Heeros I think I'll retire early..."

"All right, all right, I'll lay off. But who--"

"Trowa... Trowa Barton..." Quatre mumbled. "One gorgeous little monk who will, hopefully, be converting very soon."

[part 2] [back to Singles a - k]