Truth Or Fiction

Since I have varied interests, I decided to post a little short story I wrote back in 2003. I think I'll answer some questions off the bat. Yes, this is "fiction". No, it's not autobiographical in any way. There is some truth, I think. I love women and I think without them, we would be truly missing our better halves. This is not a love story. Do I believe in good and evil? That will be answered in time. Anyway, enjoy it, think about it, and by all means, comment on it. It would be great to know what you think. Please remember that this story is copywright.

The Seduction of David Adams

©2003- by

"30!", cried a solitary voice at the back of the bar.

"Thirty dollars! I got I hear thirty-five?" The m.c.'s voice rumbled from the powerful speakers and shook the bar like a small earthquake. The multitude of glassware reacted in unison with an eerie, cibilant chime.

"35!", shouted another up front.

David and his friends would come every Thursday evening to 'The Trap'. Like clockwork. They would arrive shortly before 'Happy Hour' to get a head-start on the crowd; occupying the same table near the stage to get a good view of the action.

Thursdays at 'The Trap', has become a popular night since the management introduced 'Auction Night' a few months earlier.  With every passing week, the crowds get larger and larger. 'Auction Night', affectionately called 'Pussy Night', by David and his friends, is an event where a girl would be 'auctioned-off' to the highest bidder. The winner would receive, in return, a bottle of champagne with which he and the girl would share together at a table, in a chaperoned area of the bar.

It wasn’t a very big place and the "décor" lacked imagination. It resembled more of a diner or truck stop in that sense, than a bar. Some tables were rickety and there was a disco ball in the center, that had been there since it opened. The lighting was dim but not dark. The music was current and they played a variety of musical styles but not so loud that you had to shout to be heard. The place had a definite retro look but it was cozy.

The winning bids would never be very high since the "champagne" was really sparkling wine and it was only worth about fifteen dollars a bottle. The bids were usually in the vicinity of forty dollars and seldom went higher than sixty.  'Auction Night' was held, ostensibly, to raise funds for local charities. The bar would take a cut and pass on the rest. It was a way to instantly meet single girls also. Knowing the manager, David concluded that 'Auction Night' was no more than a consequence of the widely known phrase, "sex sells".

Jerry Simmons sat hunched over the table, holding a straw like a cigarette in one hand and gesticulating with the other, while he continued his story.

"...and then she grabs my ass and kisses me!"

"So what. What's so weird about that? It's happened to me before. " retorted Frank.

"No, but that's not it.  It's how she kissed me.  It's like...she sucked the air from my lungs while she kissed. Wow! What a kisser! I mean-", Jerry rambled.

"-40-", boomed a voice just behind them and cut Jerry short.

"-Okay, okay, we get the message. " Frank said addressing Jerry.  He turned to David who sat slouched in his chair gazing into the bottom of his beer mug as if it was a crystal ball.

"Hey, what's the matter Dave?" Frank said placing his hand on David’s shoulder.

"Huh?...Nothing. Just Thinking.", he answered distractedly.

"-I have forty...forty-five? Do I hear forty-five?" Echoed the m.c.

"You know Dave,", breaking a smile, "I read something about that. They say that if you do it too much, you can go blind."
David chuckled reluctantly in response and turned his head toward Frank. "No Frank, seriously. Look at us", waving his hands, "We come here every Thursday like it's some bloody ritual or something. For what? To leer at the girls and jeer at everyone else. It's an absolute waste of time not to mention money."


"Hey Jerry !", said Frank nudging him with his elbow, "Go and see if they have 'Melancholy Baby' on the jukebox over there."

Jerry didn’t understand the request and shrugged it off with a gulp of his beer.

"Jesus. Frank! Listen to me will you? Look around you. All these people are going to the same place we are, some sooner and some later-", pleaded David.


As David spoke, his hands seemed to grasp at something in front of him. Frank looked at him with a smirk.

"Yeah? Where are we going?", asked Frank smugly.

Before David could answer, a look came across Frank 's face as if someone had dropped an ice cube down his shirt.

"No!! don't tell me...we're going to hell, right?", he laughed snidely and melted back into his chair.


The m.c.'s voice roared through the bar like thunderclap. Everyone's attention turned to the stage and an assortment of whistles, hoots and applause broke out. The clamour soon died down and the girl stepped off-stage to join her 'companion' at a reserved table in the back of the bar. The area was set aside for the couples formed by the auction.  It was less cramped than the rest of the place and had some niceties like candles and coasters. There were 4 tables each adorned with a thin, tall crystal vase in which stood a single, red rose.

"Now gentlemen, I would like to draw your attention to our next beauty. She's a truly arresting, five-foot-eight, buxom blonde with a pair...", pausing for a reaction from the crowd.

"...of penetrating blue eyes." A general groan from the audience.

"Heh, eyes guaranteed to tame the most savage of hearts. Gentlemen, I introduce to you now, Verrronicaaa!"

The m.c., Phil, extended his arm toward the right side of the stage and a small spotlight followed it. From behind the curtains emerged an incredibly shapely girl in a soft,  white pleated skirt. She wore a matching white, almost translucent top which besides showing her exquisite figure, revealed a substantial amount of cleavage. Her entire body was firm and well defined, not muscular. The slightly elastic fabric of which the top appeared to be made, hugged her from the waist up, contouring her curvaceous geometry. The audience gasped at the sight.

David was spellbound; Frank and Jerry were catatonic. She posed gracefully by the curtains with one hand resting on her hip and the other, on her thigh. On cue from Phil, she paced toward him, undulating her body gracefully as she went. David noticed the slight jiggle of her full, firm breasts as she proceeded to the center of the stage.

"Wowww...", Adams sighed. Frank and Jerry were still speechless.

"Even in my dreams, I couldn't have imagined a more beautiful woman."

Phil took Veronica's hand as she approached him.  The audience had overcome the initial shock now and responded with uproarious applause. Veronica scanned the crowd slowly until she made eye contact with David. His heart sank to his stomach as she devoured him with a lengthy gaze. Clearing his throat, Phil attempted to break the ambient din.

"", he said politely, indicating with his hands to stop.

"Now, a little background on this stunning creature. Veronica describes herself as a free, open and generous person with a passion for music. She plays the flute, violin and piano masterfully. She is a native of Ireland but has lived in Massachusetts nearly all of her life. Well, now that the preliminaries are out of the way, shall we proceed?"

The audience shouted out a various number of affirmative answers mixed with a few derogatory remarks about Phil's prolonged chatter. Veronica broke eye contact with David and he regained control of his motor functions. Suddenly, a ravenous jealousy possessed him and he ignited.

"-300!!", he exploded. The crowd fell silent and focused their eyes on him. He glared back at them ferociously. Frank and Jerry snapped their heads up and around toward David's contorted face.

"Are you fucking crazy, man?", whispered Frank with a scowl.

"Yeah, sit down Dave. Everybody's staring at us.", urged Jerry with a roving glance.

David remained erect and omniscient of his surroundings like a loyal watch dog guarding his master. Veronica gave David an appreciative nod and he sat down. Phil broke in, trying to divert the crowd's attention.

"Well. uh...", he crackled with a whimper.

"Th-this is a first at the Trap. I-I have a bid of three hundred dollars folks. Any higher? Anyone?". The crowd was silent and motionless while Phil scouted for some inkling of competition while giving David a puzzled glance.

"Very well then, going...going...GONE !". Phil shouted, pointing to David with his finger. Veronica pored over him seductively and then shyly bowed her head. David rose at once to join her.

"See ya later guys", he said absently without turning toward Frank and Jerry. The latter grabbed his arm as he tried to leave.

"Wait a second Dave. What's going on? And what was that scene all about? Jeez, you acted like a rabid dog surrounded by water!"

"What?? What the hell are you babbling about?" David examined Jerry's face, questioning his sanity. He caught a glimpse of Jerry's empty beer mug and pulled his arm back.

"You're pissed", he muttered disgustedly and bolted away.

After paying his debt, David joined Veronica who was already seated comfortably at a table in the reserved area. The diffused, overhead lighting a halo which surrounded her. Adams sat down directly opposite from her and pretended not to be faded by her sirenous allure.

"Hello", he said with a faint smile. "My name is David Adams"
"Veronica Killcarney, pleased to meet you." She extended a hand across the table and David hesitated with his. He was nervous and his hands were ice-cold. The alternative was not to shake her hand and that would be worse. Resignedly, he grasped her hand and squeezed it gently.

"My hands are kind of cold", he said apologetically.

"Well, you know what they say, 'cold hands, warm heart'.", she said with melodious inflection.

She spoke with an ever so slight Irish accent. It is his favourite accent. When used by a woman, it excites him. Used by a man, he finds it comic. Her voice was deep for a woman, guttural, almost androgynous but unmistakably feminine. It reminded him of the kind of sensuous and seductive female voices used in those cologne and perfume commercials; sultry and soothing. Adams felt more at ease now and smiled.


"Yes?-and you can call me Vicki. Victoria sounds too formal."

"Ok, Vicki. Can I ask you something?"

"Certainly.... anything. ". She said invitingly and leaned forward toward David. He immediately forgot what he was going to ask and instead, found himself leaning forward to meet her. They kissed. Her lips were fleshy and soft. They were quickly interrupted.

"Hrrrmph !"

They parted with a start and looked up. A waitress was standing alongside, holding a tray with two long stemmed glasses and an ice bucket with a bottle of champagne towering out of it.

"Sorry, but I should serve this before the ice melts.", she said wryly.

Adam's put on a parodial face in reaction to the waitress' sardonic comment. Veronica laughed. After the woman had placed everything on the table, she filled each glass halfway (they never fill them completely) and placed one in front of each of them. She then snatched the empty tray and briskly strode away. David watched the champagne bubbles disappear as the waitress moved out of earshot. He leaned forward slightly toward Veronica and said,

"I guess she's having a bad night."

"You're very understanding",  she smiled warmly,  "and generous too!"

"What do you mean?"

"Well, a bid of three hundred dollars is hardly stingy," she intoned.

"It makes me feel as if I owe you something."

David noticed her eyes scanning him, perhaps deciding whether or not to repay the debt. He certainly did not want to discourage her, nor did he want to overtly coax her, so he said,

"No one can rob you of your freedom of choice, Vicki." and raised his glass in a toast.

"Well put! As discrete as a diplomat. You seem to have an aptitude for politics.", she said, impressed. Then, lifting her glass also, she added in an inviting tone,

"Here's to a successful career, Mr. Adams."

They touched glasses and there was a distinctive ring. "Real crystal!", David thought, "I'm impressed". They sipped their drinks carefully. Veronica left her lower lip wet with champagne and the overhead lights made it sparkle brighter than the crystal itself.

"Do you really play all those instruments?", he asked.

"Yes", she said calmly, setting her glass of champagne on the table.

"I started playing at a very early age."

"How old are you now, by the way?"


"That's quite an accomplishment! Mozart wouldn't happen to be one of your ancestors, would he?", he inquired, taking another sip. She gave him a broad smile, exposing bright, white and perfect teeth.

"No, I don't think so.", she said bowing her head shyly.

He saw that Veronica was blushing, but refrained from saying anything. "I can't figure her out.", he thought. "One minute she's aggressive and confident, the next, she's submissive and shy."

Smiling, Adams, toasted with Veronica once again and they emptied their glasses. In trying to refill them, David put his glass down suddenly while going for the Champagne bottle and accidentally hit the rim of her glass with his and broke off a small piece. Instinctively, he attempted to limit the breakage and fumbled with both glasses. Finally managing to control the situation, he set the glasses in their respective positions. He glanced around the bar, self-conscious, and noticed that Frank and Jerry were no longer seated at their table. A few people were looking at him with expressions of puzzlement and surprise as he scouted the bar for his friends. The barmaid, came around and replaced David’s broken glass with a new one and darted off annoyed.

"-Your bleeding David!", she interrupted with a squeak.


"You’re pinky, It’s bleeding."

David looked at his hand and a small stream of blood had traced halfway down his little finger and a small dime-sized pool had collected on the table below it.

"Oh, shit." He mumbled, shifting his eyes around for a napkin.

Veronica took his hand gently, curled in the rest of his fingers and aimed the injured one toward her mouth. He didn’t resist as he watched her lips parting and he pointed his finger straight out to help direct it toward her open mouth.

"Mmm..." He sighed.

The warm, soft and tingly sensation he felt aroused him. This was the sexiest and strangest thing he had ever experienced. Unrelenting, she continued to suck and massage his finger with her hot tongue.

"I can’t take this anymore", he thought, "I’ve gotta have her." Then again, he found this situation strange. They’ve just met and she’s sucking his blood. What if he were someone who had some sort of disease? She would be taking a dangerous risk. Against his will, he pulled his hand back. Raising his shoulders, he said,

"Uh, Vicky...Although I really liked that, you don’t really know me. Aren’t you worried about drinking my blood? I mean, I don’t expect you do this to every guy you meet, but, what if I...What if I had something? You know..."

"I’m sure you don’t." Vicky said confidently.

"Well, I don’t but-"

"-But how do I know? I just do...I’m a good judge of people." Vicky tilted her head and smiled.

"And rest assured, I’ve never done that to anyone else before."

David felt relieved, and sighed.

"Well, I think I’m in love."

"You think? Isn’t that something that you should know?" She intoned showing a coy smile.

David laughed.

"Ok, Ok...I can ask the same question you know." He said invitingly.

"I know..." She said with playful inflection.

There was a short pause while they looked in each others eyes. Then they both erupted into laughter. They stayed at the bar for an hour or so and did not seem to run out of things to say. Adams was in heaven. They finally finished the rest of the champagne, but he did not want the night to end. She was witty, intelligent, talented and gorgeous. He looked around the bar once more and saw no sign of his friends and so he deduced that they must have gone home.

"Are you hungry? Do you want to grab something to eat?"

"I thought you’d never ask."

"Chinese, Italian..." Waving his hands.

"Oh, you mean food?" She said touching her finger to her lip.

David smiled.

"Well then, I guess we’ll order that to go?"

He stretched out his hand toward her, and stood up. She took his hand and got up also, shaking her long golden hair side to side. When she stood up straight, he tugged on her hand and pulled her quickly against him. They locked together perfectly. She felt so good. He pressed her firmly against him and they kissed passionately.


They arrived at David’s apartment twenty minutes later. He didn’t live far from the bar, or from work. The rent was inexpensive but the place looked great. He really got lucky finding such a good deal so close to everything. There was soundproofing and the construction was cement so the floors were solid and it was quiet. He showed Vicky into the apartment and closed the door behind him. The place had a definite modern look but not so sterile and empty. The carpeting was clean and new and the patio doors which led to the balcony could be seen from the front door. The view wasn’t bad either, since he was on the 14th floor. The downtown lights were visible from where they stood and the variety of colors they provided, was reminiscent of some celestial landscape.

Adams showed her around the apartment, going from room to room, finally ending up at the bedroom. She immediately walked through the doorway and he lost sight of her in the darkened room. David stood motionless at the doorway for a moment, then felt the wall for the light switch. He flicked it and the two night table lamps lit up filling the room with a warm golden glow. He saw her standing a few feet in front of him in her translucent white outfit. Which, to his slightly blurred vision, seemed to shimmer and dance wildly with a dazzling glow. His eyes were fully open now as he beheld this glorious goddess before him. She looked David over from head to foot and back up again savouring the sight. She was in control. David reached behind him blindly and gently swung the door closed. Then, with a faint smile, she tilted her head back and stroked her smooth, shiny golden hair its full length. David gasped for air. Then, with a soft, melodious, whisper, she spoke.

"Come here." she beckoned.

In his trance-like state, David quickly complied and grabbed her.

"No, not so close, I want to be able to feel the heat from your body.", she cooed.

"Whoa...this is tough to do.", he thought, "but ok, I’ll play."

He inched his way back from her voluptuous figure. Standing just an inch or two away from contact, he trembled with anticipation. The calescence between their two bodies grew intolerable for David. So much so, that he broke out in a light sweat.

"Yes, that's it. There...Good." she aahed almost inaudibly.

David was going to nuclear meltdown, aching to touch her shapely curves. Veronica though, had complete control over the situation and David felt powerless to do anything. She closed her eyes gently and arched her back until it seemed that she was going to fall backward on the bed behind her. Instead, she was gracefully suspended there in front of him. He certainly was in the right position. Vicky’s torso formed a beautiful landscape stretched out in front of him.

"This is torture!!" he cried to himself. Suddenly, she raised herself and stood up straight. She was breathing heavy now, and in the silence of the room it resounded loudly. The walls surrounding them seemed to breathe along with her. Veronica slid her hand slowly up her thigh, over her stomach and up her torso. His entire body  squirmed. David and Veronica stood there, separated by a few air molecules, so close yet so far.

By now, Veronica's delicate hand had reached her trembling lips. She wet a finger with the tip of her tongue and moistened her full, fleshy lips with a slow, uniform stroke.

"Enough Already" David thought. "I’m gonna pass out".

"Patience.", she whispered softly.

"How did-"

"All good things come to those that wait.", she said consolingly.

She opened her eyes slowly and stared deep into David's. Her bright blue eyes caught the light and he saw so many reflections, that indeed, it did look like the sun off the waves of the sea. His heart seized for a moment and he realized that he hadn't been breathing for the longest time. David shuddered as he drew a deep breath.

She reached her hot hands and laid them on David's shoulders. He was about to scream with delight, but instead, he let out a long coarse moan, shivering as he did. Veronica slid her hands down, over his chest, then curled them around his sides. She then wrapped her arms around him and pressed her curvaceous young body against his. Her curves fit precisely into his., each one's body giving way to the other until there was no space at all between them. David cupped her waist gently with his large sweaty hands.

Veronica began swaying her flaming body to and fro against David's while uttering some incomprehensible words to a rhythmic chant. David couldn't care what the words meant, and his hands were all over her.  Suddenly, Veronica stopped. David kept going for a few seconds before he noticed.

A moment later, she started quivering; beginning in short bursts then becoming longer and more violent. At first, he thought it was just part of the game, but now he was worried.

"Babe?? You Ok??"
"Vicky! I’m freakin’ out here!!"

She didn’t say a single word but shook violently like jackhammer.

"What the hell-? No, no, no , no don't tell me! A seizure??", he reasoned.

He threw her on the bed behind him, and looking at the head of the bed, grabbed a pillow, and slid off the pillow case. Twisting it rapidly to form a thick rope, he turned back to Vicky to put it in her mouth and keep it open.

David froze. Her once cool, blue eyes were now a deep iridescent red. Shocked, he took a few steps back and bumped into the closet door. She stopped shaking and stood there motionless for a second. David remained paralyzed with his back flat up against the door. Veronica glared ferociously at him and in a deep raspy voice, that was definitely not her own, she spoke to him.

"I'm ready now, David." she said in a mocking voice.

He stood there staring incredulously at her, unsure of what to do next. He observed the skin on Veronica's face, arms and legs bubbling and rippling like the surface of boiling water. Her well cultivated nails gave way to long, ragged claws that were chipped, black and pointed at the tips. David stared in horror at this transmogrification incapable of  moving due to some strange force holding him pinned to the door. He had no choice but to look on.

The flesh of Veronica's slender arms began tearing open from the wrists to the shoulders revealing massive, muscular forearms and biceps which dwarfed the rest of her body. David's stomach turned and he became violently sick on the floor in front of him. He could see hot vapour rising, from the strange, twisted sinew void of skin. Gasping for air and screaming at the top of his voice, he struggled with all his God-given strength to free himself but to no avail. The incongruous limbs belonged to someone, or something, much larger because the hands touched the floor, while the remainder stood vertically, still attached to what remained of Veronica. Next, her legs followed in much the same manner as her arms. David watched as her tiny head and torso rose into the air, transported by hideous legs growing out from under her. David's voice was so hoarse from screaming that, although the compulsion was still there, they were reduced to no more than a faint squeals.

"What's  the matter David, don't you find me attractive anymore?", growled the voice sarcastically from Veronica's mouth.

"Well that's because I haven't quite finished undressing yet...", the voice continued.

"Just one more piece of this second skin to remove and..."

Just as those words were spoken, the rest of her body flew apart with explosive fury, spotting David and the entire room in flesh and blood. Even in his worst nightmares, he could never have imagined a more macabre and revolting scene than this gruesome metamorphosis. Suddenly, the air was permeated with the stench of human waste and carrion. He felt sick again but nothing emerged except the sound of repeated convulsions. As soon as he gained control of himself, the force that held him to the door, now cast his weakened body heavily to the floor.

" feels good to get rid of all that restrictive clothing." said the voice.

David lay face down on the floor with his arms outstretched like someone being crucified. He was so exhausted and nauseous that even if he were free to move, he wouldn't.

"Get out of that pathetic position and look at me when I'm talking to you!" roared the voice impatiently.

Immediately, he was lying on his back, arms at his sides. He felt like a toy in the hands of a malcontent child. Passively, he looked up at the creature's face. It was composed of reptilian, human and porcine features. The skin covering  it's entire head was coarse and greenish-brown in color like a lizard's skin. It had deep eye sockets which housed comparatively tiny but familiar red eyes. Large frontal lobes served to shadow and therefore, accentuate it's infernal lamps. A large pig-like snout in the center of it's face ejected jets of hot vapour when the creature would exhale. Amazingly enough, amidst this macabre mélange, were a pair of human-like ears with substantial lobes. A very wide mouth with fat chapped lips grinned diabolically at him, demonstrating four serpentine fangs. There were two on the upper row which extended far below it's chin and the others on the lower row, reaching upward to either side of it's snout. It became apparent to David that this creature had no gender. It was leaning forward towards him, bent over, because the nine foot ceilings were a bit too low.

"You will excuse the mess David, but I've always had a flair for theatrics.", it cackled maliciously.

"What's the matter little insect, didn't your mommy ever tell you about certain girls?", the voice taunted in a high pitched croak.

"W-Who, uh...what are you?" asked Adams in a low, but defiant tone.

"Balls! The critter has balls! Something I don't!" replied the creature with a morbid laugh.

"Well, my tiny tick, If you haven't guessed by now, you're either a blithering idiot or hopelessly blind. Eliminating the latter, you must be the former!", it laughed again.

David realized that it was a rather foolish question. A hundred more questions filled his mind but clearer were the images of Veronica, and the manner in which she was consumed. Tears welled up in his eyes.



Wiping tears from his cheeks, he regained his composure. Adams snapped his head up.

"Why did you have to kill her, especially that way?" He dared enquire.

"Perhaps I should keep you in suspense...", he grinned.

"Nah, after all, I'm not a bad guy...Ha!Ha!"

"She wasn't real. Not as you know it. She was just something I threw together to bring you here. So, after you arrived I kind of...threw her apart!!", he laughed deliriously with a deafening roar.

Adams reacted instinctively by covering his ears, discovering he was able to move. Slowly, he began to get up. Seeing that no objections were made, he stood up straight and looked up at what can be only Satan himself. He had never pictured Satan as being someone who would be constantly laughing and making tasteless jokes. In front of him though, was living proof. But what could He want with a nobody like him? This made no sense at all. He ventured to ask another question.

"You said that Veronica was necessary to bring me here. May I ask , what for and why me?"

"Veronica," Satan snorted.

"Was the perfect illusion, the perfect mask of enchantment. You should be flattered because she was designed with only you in mind; molded and composed from your most esoteric desires. Every curve, every limb, the product of a single component from your mental carnal collage. Is there anything else that you would have followed so willingly?"

"So, in other words, you're saying It’s my fault I’m here?"

"Ironic, isn't it?", he snickered.

"I still don't understand why-"

"-Simple, You've been drafted! Ha,Ha!"

David was becoming frustrated at Satan's intentional evasiveness and exasperating humour.

"OH! I sense the little tick, is ticked.", Satan grinned, taunting him with the remark.

"He can read my mind!" David thought.

"Give this man a prize!" Satan shouted.

"Where's Alfred Nobel when you need him?...Oh yes, I forgot." He chuckled.

"Is this purgatory?" David asked himself. "Am I to be subjected to an eternity of rapid-fire, stale one-liners?"

"Sooo, You're not amused by my jokes, eh?"

"Oh shit," Adams thought. He feared, from Satan 's inflection, what was about to occur.

"Maybe you will be amused by pain." Satan growled.

Instantly, Adams shrieked from agony. It felt like every muscle in his body was cramped; sharp, intense and unrelenting pain. He had had leg cramps before, during his high-school years when he swam for the team. His strong aversion to that genre of pain, is what forced him to quit the sport altogether. Satan knew of this repressed fear; aware that this was the most effective weapon of intimidation. David stood paralyzed; his face wrenched, jaw clamping his mouth closed. The merciless anguish compelled him to grind his teeth violently. David's vision began to blur and darken and he was about to pass out, when the torment ceased. His legs folded beneath him, sending his limp figure plopping to the ground. His chest absorbed most of the impact and winded him.

"Had enough?... Good." Satan said.

All discomfort instantly disappeared from his listless frame and he felt unusually strong and revitalized.

"What the hell?" He muttered, and stood up.

"Indeed!" Satan replied.

"You see, I am equally able to reward as I am to punish. Which one you prefer is entirely up to you."

"You mean I have a choice?"

"Of course, 'No one can rob you of your freedom of choice' David, remember?" Satan raised his eyebrows.

"Then I choose neither. I choose to leave here. I want no part of-"

David stopped cold as he noticed Satan's eyes pulsing rapidly. The walls of the room expanded and contracted selectively in various places and the air grew damp and hot. The bright room had transformed into a dimly-lit cavern.  All around him were pyramidal protrusions of sundry sizes coming out of the walls and hanging from the ceiling. They appeared to be made of some kind of metal. In front of him, sat Satan on an elaborate and exquisite throne. Surrounding it, was a bright greenish-white glow that seemed to be the only source of light in the cavern.

The throne was actually very beautiful. It was constructed from precious stones and metals. David could distinguish what appeared to be diamonds, emeralds and rubies of such gigantic proportions that the smallest of them could easily pay off the National Debt. He also saw metals like gold, silver and platinum adorning the throne; engraved with intricate designs and some strange alphabet. Adams was dazzled. On the wall to his left, was a golden pendulum hanging from the wall and swinging left to right. It was shaped somewhat like a sailor’s anchor. It was also engraved with lettering and symbols like the throne and adorned with many different stones. An amazingly intricate, beautiful, yet simple mechanism. Adams was drawn to it and went to touch it when...

"I wouldn’t touch that if I were you..." He warned.

"Trust me." He grinned.

David pulled back.

"Beautiful, isn't it?" Satan said pompously.

"I made it myself, naturally. But back to the matter at hand. In response to your first statement, you cannot choose not to choose. Your puerile word play does not confuse, nor amuse me. A choice, you vexatious vermin, is a selection made from a collection of items. You were given two. It's pleasure...or pain! Even the Stoics, with their ostensible indifference felt these strongly, although they rarely showed it. As for your second statement, you have already made that choice. In a sense, you chose to come here!"

"No I didn't...Wait...What do you mean, 'in a sense'?" He challenged.

"By choosing Me, flustering fool! A series of 'selections' were presented to you tonight and you picked My path each and every time, and here is where it leads. That brings me to your third and final statement. You have a large part in all of this." Satan sat back on his throne, and exhaled a long jet of vapour.

"What 'selections' ? I didn't make any-"

Satan interrupted David with a booming belly laugh.

"You most certainly did! When you lusted after Veronica, you chose me."

"But I didn't know-"

"-When you hated, with a passion to kill I might add, everyone in that bar tonight. Once again, choosing me."

"Huh? Now, hold on a second. I never felt that way, I would have remembered. Of that I'm sure!'' said David assuredly, but somehow he felt doubtful.

"Are you absolutely sure?" Satan said slyly.

At once, David saw the entire scene unfold in his mind. He stood motionless, imbibing the vision; sceptically at first, but gradually accepting it.

"Do you see?", He said with a smirk.

"You even kissed me David."

Adams stared at Satan's hideous face and his stomach turned.

"But even at that point it still wasn't too late to 'move' in a different direction. However, when you gave me your blood..."

"I didn't give you my blood, you took it!", Adams said indignantly.

''You still had the choice to resist. But you didn't. You helped."

"But-" Adams stopped short. He realized that his attempts to defend himself would only prove futile.

"That's right!", Satan blared. A cloud of vapour streamed from his snout.

"I have been extraordinarily tolerant with you and your questions for a reason. The reason is to dispel any preconceived notions you might have about me."

"Up until now, you seem to fit the profile of everything I have ever imagined or heard about you. Except for the jokes." 

"Of course, if I had acted any other way, you would still be asking yourself who I was. I had to 'fit in' to your preconceptions of Me for you to recognize Me. As for the jokes, We are allowed to laugh you know, everything is not so solemn and serious here as it is with a dreary catholic service on 'Sunday'."

"Contrary to popular belief, I am not the way I am by nature but by circumstance. The reason for my rebellion against the Old Man, is because He was, and is, a Plutocrat. He wants all the power concentrated in His hands."

"He's got the whole world, in his hands..." He sang mockingly.

"Jesus Christ!"

"I, on the other hand, wanted the power to be shared among everyone; every living human being. I made this proposal to Him, but He refused to listen. I know My way is better. So, from that moment on, I vowed to fight Him and His ways. The only way to accomplish this was to act as the antithesis of everything He represents. To fight fire, one must use water not fire. I am just as forgiving and loving as He is. But until I defeat Him and restore true 'democracy', I must maintain my position. Regrettable, but necessary."

"My true followers know this. There are those who pervert my intentions and goals by performing mutilations, sacrifices and such in my name. These actions are the result of propaganda spread about me by the Old Man. Think about it. It is those who believe His allegations and accusations, that commit all sorts of atrocities. How many wars have there been in His name, yet none in mine? And all of them, supposedly against Me. I do not deny that I have caused certain people to be killed, but then again, so has He. Death, as you know it, is not the 'end' of existence. What gives the impression that death is wrong or 'evil', as humans put it, lays only in the 'image' of death. The sight of a dismembered, mutilated or putrefied lifeless body and the violence it conveys, horrifies and intimidates humans and therefore, it is perceived as 'evil' and consequently, My doing. If someone dies in their sleep or dies without pain, it is not perceived as evil and consequently, God's doing. You have all been brain-washed about the true nature of death."

David shivered at the thought.

"Don't be alarmed David. You, and every human being are immortal; death is but a transition from a dimension ruled by time to a dimension ruled by will. In this dimension, you can cease being immortal at any time though, just by willing it. Now, that is 'true' death. Most importantly, it is totally within your control. No one can exercise their own will to kill you. Which is why I’m not dead and neither is He. We must resort to other means. The will must be collective and unanimous by every soul occupying that dimension. Since both of us have followers, we are at a stalemate. No 'entity' has ever willed their own death because 'existence' is just too good. I can 'force' you to do what I wish merely by willing it. This is what I mean by pain, David. I am explaining myself to you because I would much rather that you choose to follow me of your own free will. In return, you shall share my power and you shall not want of anything either here, in this dimension, nor there, in that dimension. This is what I mean by pleasure.''

"You have a funny way of recruiting allies. Intimidation, torture and now, threats…and you want me to follow you? You're even trying to bribe me. Anyone in their right mind would have to be crazy!", Adams said.

"It's difficult breaking through that Christian dogma isn't it? It is not a bribe but a reward. Doesn't God promise to reward if you follow Him? Doesn't He promise that you shall share his power and glory? That He shall give you everything? So why don't you also accuse Him of the same?"

"Yeah, except he’s good and you’re evil, as you yourself mentioned."

"What is good and what is evil? It's war! The notion of good and evil only depends on who's side your on. The riches he promises and the heaven he promises are all spoils of war. 'Everything is fair in love and war'. I respect your free will, just like those of other entities here. It is our only Law. However, God laid down commandments; Don't do this and don't touch that...Bullshit! All of it!", He snorted wildly.

"He stops you from exercising your free will. The hypocrite then turns around and does the very things He tells you not to do. Didn't He lead massive raids on numerous cities? It's in the Old Testament. Doesn't He say He's a jealous God'? Doesn't He 'punish' those that go against Him? Doesn't He become furious and destroy those things He hates? Remember Jesus in the temple among the gamblers? He certainly lost his cool. He has laws for this and for that and the other thing and keeps adding more, or should I say, inventing more as He goes along. Of course He does! It serves His purpose. I, on the other hand, have only one. Do what thou wilt."

"So why wouldn't you allow me to leave? It was my will to leave!" He snapped.

"Because you would have left with all your preconceived notions about Me and My cause. You would not have heard a single word of what I had to say. Am I right or not?". David knew well that it was true.

"As I said, I could force you but It's not what I want. It is not My will. It is not in my nature. I don't break my own Laws, contrary to the Old Man. Even He cannot take away your free will. That is why we call it 'Free'. It is the only 'true' freedom that exists. There are no others. God tries to usurp your freedom by telling you that you have to follow His ways to be happy and live forever. That, is the biggest lie and the most heinous crime of all...It is exactly this injustice that made me rebel against Him. Then, He calls me a liar! I am the only entity in the entire universe that is looking out for your rights!! I'm the one who should be getting the praise and glory. Instead, I'm treated like shit. He takes control of people's minds directly, thus once again robbing them of their free will. Do you honestly think that the prophets wrote of their own free will? No. He ordered them to write what He said., and the weak-minded fools did it without a single question or protest. I am not saying that the entire Bible is a book of lies but it has just enough 'slant' to work in His favor. I'm afraid if He wins the war, it will be the end of all freedom. Isn't it written in the Book of Revelations that in the new world, 'He will write His Law upon our hearts and upon our minds'? Isn't that the end of your free will...for good?", He sighed exasperated.

"I don't see it that way," said Adams.

"If He's going to do that, it's for the good of mankind. Look at the world and the state it's in. We are destroying ourselves ever so slowly. We cheat, lie, steal and kill each other with no end in sight. If there is going to be peace, everyone must follow a certain code of conduct. By writing this code in our hearts and minds, He is insuring that everyone will follow this code of conduct and thus guarantee peace on earth. As a matter of fact, I think that the reason why the world is in the state it's in, is precisely because everyone is doing exactly what they want - or as you put it 'Doing what they wilt'."

"Once again kid, you don't have all the facts. The world is like that not because of My Law but because of cause-and-effect. If We are at war, then you will be at war. 'On earth, as it is in Heaven'. What is occurring on earth is a reflection of what's occurring in heaven...And it's war. When the war is over in heaven, it will also be over on earth. After I win, the war will cease automatically. There will be no need to 'force' anyone to adhere to your so-called 'codes of conduct'. The Old Man however, just to make sure, will rob you of your Will. The only real freedom you possess. I won't. If you lose your free will here on earth by submitting to His, you lose it forever. You become a slave to His will for eternity and worst yet, you couldn’t even will your own death to get out of it! I foresaw all of this and that's why I am against Him. I won't let Him do it."

"I regret to having treated you the way I did just before, but I was 'in character' and sometimes it takes time to get out of it. As I said, I have to fight fire with water. Black against white. Every war is a conflict of opposite views and must necessarily be that way. The war is carried out against the Old Man and not the human race as it may seem. The human race is, regrettably, the 'pieces' in a universal chess game. Every war must have an army."

"So you're 'using' us. Why couldn't you just create an entire army of so-called 'unreal' Veronica's to fight your war instead of using us?"

"Because they have no souls like ‘real’ women or real ‘men’ for that matter. Like you Dave...They are just lumps of flesh with a little 'motor-action' added. They have no 'Free Will' and cannot exist in Our dimension. There would be no gain or loss and so, the war would never end. At first, we did try it that way. The dinosaurs, are a good example. They were ferocious all right, but stupid. We had to control them all the time and no matter how many were defeated on either side, the only measure of success or 'trophy' we had was how high the piles of dead flesh were. What do you want to do with a mountain of meat? It rots, it smells. They're not extinct for nothing you know. But by creating the human race, which was a collaborative effort by the way, We invented a way to finally put a decisive end to the war."

"A collaborative effort?? You mean, you and God made us together?? Aw, come on..."

"Try not to use that name in my presence, by the way. I prefer you call Him the 'Old Man' and the answer is YES. Difficult to believe, eh? But like any other enemies, when it is advantageous to both sides, differences are put aside and they join together for the common goal."

"My contribution was the 'flesh' and His was the 'soul'. We both contributed 'Free Will'. The decisive factor. This way, We created a 'third-party' to choose whose way was best and imposed a time limit on the war. When the time limit is up, We will each take Our army of souls and start the final battle. Winner take all. The gain for Us are souls. Souls have existence, they are eternal and individual, unlike the flesh. Flesh has life but no existence, it is fragile, perishable, and is basically, all the same."

"But aren't you the 'master of the flesh' as it is written? If you say yourself that the flesh is weaker, how do you expect to win?", Adams countered boldly.

"I am 'Master of the Flesh' because I have complete control over every aspect of it. Veronica, was an example. Yes, the flesh is weak and it is My disadvantage. The Old Man is 'Master of the Spirit' because he also has complete control over it. However, He has a weakness too... He can't create a new soul without flesh. That is His disadvantage. If He could, He would have created a massive army of souls and done away with me a long time ago. Your race wouldn't even have been created!"

David stared at the Devil, stunned and thought, "Could this really be the truth? Have we all been deceived? Even in the Bible it is written that in the end, "the entire world will be deceived". Are we just pawns in some kind of game? Someone tell me this is not true."

"I have told you the truth, David Adams. I have exposed my weakness, my nature and my motives. There is only one thing that I need to show you..."

Adams trembled, not knowing what to expect.

"And that is, my true appearance.", he continued.

His heart sank as he expected the worst.

Satan rose from his throne, and uttered some more incomprehensible words. Gradually, the entire cave became brighter and brighter. The greenish-white glow from the throne turned to bright white and enveloped Him. His twisted, macabre body began to shrink to human proportions. His muscular and exposed flesh changed to slender, smooth limbs with a shiny, white porcelain-like finish. His eyes had a warm golden glow and the pupils could be easily distinguished. His feet and hands were very human-like and also glowed with the same color as his eyes and Adams saw he was no longer touching the earth. Hair grew from His head that seemed to be made from chrome but swayed and fell over his shoulders like fine silk. David could see the deformed reflection of the surroundings in His locks. The throne rose from the earth and began folding and twisting in on itself until it a long sceptre was formed. It was also made from the same materials as the throne with a large ruby at the butt of the handle. A large diamond formed the tip at the other end. The same strange alphabet he had seen on the throne was inscribed alongside two criss-crossed spirals that began at the tip and wound their way up the entire length of the cane to the ruby at the top.

"Wow, what a difference. H-He's beautiful...It's an illusion. It has to be.", Adams thought.

"No, David, it is no illusion. I am a master of 'Flesh', not 'Spirit', remember? You are seeing me now as I really am, in Spirit. I have to admit that the 'Old Man' did do a good job on Me. I must give Him credit for that. It is written in the Bible that He created Me, Lucifer, as the most beautiful of all Angels. That is no lie.", He said in a calm, soothing voice.

David had remembered reading that passage in Bible. Also, there was mention of Lucifer having the "sum of all knowledge".

"I need your cooperation, David. You are one of the key players in this galactic plan."

"Ha!" David caught himself and stopped.

"You’re joking...right?...key...What do you mean, 'key players'?"

"Each of Us has our own key players. You are one of mine. Like it or not. If you decide not to help, that is your free will. I may very well lose, not to mention the rest of humanity, if you choose not to aid me in my battle. I will not force you because I would be betraying the very thing I wish to defend. You see, I couldn't let you leave before you knew the whole story. Now you know. You have a very important decision to make, so make it wisely. You wanted to leave? Not only are you free to do so,  but I also urge you to leave. Go now.", He waved his sceptre in Adams' direction.

Adams closed his eyes by instinct. When he opened them, he was lying face-down on the pavement in the middle of an alley. Just then, a loud horn blared and he snapped his head up to see a man in a garbage truck waving his fist and shouting something. He got up and moved over to the side to let the truck pass. He could now hear the driver clearly.

"What in the devil's name were you doing there? Are you crazy? I could have run you over, Goddammit!"

Adams smiled slightly. He shrugged his shoulders and began walking towards the street.

"Asshole!!" The driver shouted back and drove away.

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