The Devil Came Down to ‘Bama
“Rocket launcher, Union flag, Obama campaign lawn signs, megaphone, and other miscellaneous firearms!” I slammed the back hatch of my lemon car.
I flipped my lengthy black hair and rolled up the sleeves of my shirt, revealing my pale and tattooed arms.
“The South shall rise again!” a disoriented voice screamed.
“Oh boy, here we go,” I sighed and turned around. “Hello, Cletus.”
A man with stringy hair in a plaid shirt and jeans stood in front of me with a shotgun and torch in hand.
“Hey there, Brick! Are you comin’ to the gathering?” he asked.
“Absolutely not. Careful with your open flame on a stick,” I turned around.
“When is your daddy gonna come out?” Cletus leered at me.
I froze. A smile played on my lips, “When he’s done resting his old bones.”
I walked to the front door, pulled it open, and slammed it behind me. I started laughing uncontrollably. After three years, the townspeople were still none the wiser. They didn’t have a clue about my parents.
My name’s Brick, and I hate people- or at least Alabama folk...Nevermind, everyone else is probably just as bad. How could I hate my own species? It’s simple: humans are stupid, arrogant, loud, and obnoxious. All they do is ruin each other’s lives! They waste their time on Big Mac baby food and selfie-taking methods instead of actually making a difference, or better yet trying to evolve from the ignorant swines that they are!
What have they accomplished? Wars, genocide, and worse: reality TV! They find it necessary to give every rich group of plastic-laced females a television show. What makes them the “Real Housewives?” Who wants to keep up with the Kardashians? There are few things that I enjoy that humans have created. I shook my head at the disgusting thoughts; I walked into the living room.
My parents were relaxing on the couch, watching Duck Dynasty on the TV. At least, the skeletons of my parents were. I hated them more than any of the humans. They were cruel and selfish; they didn’t accept me. I had killed them years ago, giving me freedom.
“Mom, Dad, I’m going out,” I grinned at their skeletons.
A gust rattled my mother’s bones.
“I’m hanging out with Wiley and Jeff.”
My dad’s trucker hat tilted on his skull.
“Dad, both of them are white.”
My mom’s skeleton slumped over.
“I don’t know what we’re going to do. We’ll probably watch anime or something.”
My mom’s bones creaked.
“It’s not like that, Mom! Anime has beautiful, kind, respectable girls...with very intentional, very vivid body features!”
A fly landed in my dad’s eye socket.
“I’m not taking care of your stupid gas station!”
The fly buzzed.
“I don’t care if your cult meets there on Wednesdays! I’m not staying in this dump any longer than I have to! I’m going to New York to become a graphic designer until I assemble enough followers for world domination. Little do they know, they will burn with the rest!”
My dad’s jaw dipped down.
“No one understands how I feel!” I screamed and ran to my car, driving off into the night while blaring 80’s music.
“That’s enough of that,” I said after five minutes. I turned the radio off as I pulled into a driveway.
I got out of my car and honked the horn multiple times. The top floor window was thrown open. A boy with short, blond hair peeked his head out.
“Brick, what is wrong with you?” Jeff, my friend, hissed.
“Is Wiley with you?” I ignored the question.
“Does anyone wanna listen to my mixtape?” Wiley, Jeff’s cousin, poked his head out as well.
“Get down here. We have work to do,” I got back in my car.
I know what you’re thinking. How do you have friends? You hate humans, don’t you? These two are acceptable. They’re my minions, my henchmen. Jeff took shotgun while Wiley slid in the back.
“What is it this time, evil lord of darkness?” Jeff asked with sigh.
“Thank you for calling me by my title,” I smiled sweetly as I backed out of the drive way and continued down the street.
“Can I play my mixtape?” Wiley questioned but was ignored.
“Seriously, what are you doing?” Jeff pressed further.
“It’s a surprise,” I patted his head.
“I really wanna play my mixtape,” Wiley complained.
“I don’t want to go jail. Have you been in an Alabama prison? They’ll eat me alive in there!” Jeff exclaimed.
“You won’t go to jail unless it is absolutely necessary for my escape,” I took a right.
“That makes me feel a million times better!” Jeff said sarcastically.
“Brick, can I play my mixtape?” Wiley whined.
I slammed on the brakes. Jeff lurched forward with a yelp. I spun around in my seat and crashed my head into Wiley’s.
“Wiley! Shut up!” I screamed.
Wiley whimpered while clutching his forehead. He sniffled, and I instantly felt bad. Headbutting Wiley was like punting a puppy. I kick puppies all the time, but you get the point. I turned around and started driving again.
“Do you wanna go get some ice cream, buddy?” I asked.
Wiley’s face lit up, “Really?”
“Yeah, anything you want, you little abomination!”
“I love you, Brick!”
“I love you too, buddy.”
“Can I play my mixtape?”
Wiley was my one weakness. After stopping for ice cream, we arrived at our destination, the gathering of the unintelligent racists. They were in a huge building that they often rented out. I got out of my car and slithered over to a window. They were all huddled in one room, screaming about how Pokemon was satanic. I shook my head; people are pathetic. Wiley and Jeff joined me by the window.
I whispered, “Here’s the plan: we going to set up all the things in the back of my car. We’ll draw them out and see them freak!”
“That’s it?” Jeff inquired incredulously.
“Pretty much,” I shrugged.
“You’re keeping half of the plan from us again, Brick.”
Wiley chimed in, “I’m swag with that! Let’s slide into their DMs!”
Jeff rubbed his temples, “That’s not how you use either of those phrases.”
“Stop being a buzzkill and get to work, Jeff!” I thumped him on the back and got up.
I supervised them while reading a book as they set everything up. The book was about a boy trying to find his friend, Tyrone. The book was banned from from every state except Iowa, Alaska, and Vermont.
I looked up from my book, “A little more to the left, Jeff. Wiley, the flag needs to be centered.”
They finished just as I finished my book.
I slammed the book shut, “It was a toy train all along! Hilarious!”
“How does it look, psycho?” Jeff questioned.
I looked at the lawn. It had become a southerner’s worst nightmare. Obama campaign signs covered every inch of grass, signifying that “Yes we can!” Their republican grass had been overtaken by the democratic signs. Amongst the signs, their leader stood proudly in the middle: the Union flag.
“It’s my dad’s worst nightmare. I love it!” I smiled gleefully as I popped open the trunk. I took a crossbow out and took aim at a window.
I launched the arrow through the window and then heard someone shout something about their knee. I hummed as I threw the crossbow back into the trunk and grabbed the megaphone. I cranked it up to high volume.
“Barack Obama! Abraham Lincoln! Anime! Caitlyn Jenner!” the megaphone screeched.
The people in the building quickly filed out and looked on in horror. Cletus fainted with an arrow sticking out of his knee. It was too much for them.
“Who dares speak four of the twelve forbidden words?” a greasy, bushy haired hag of a woman said.
“What are the other eight?” Jeff asked in a whisper.
“Most have to do with leggings and regular bathing,” I answered him.
“What are y’all doin’ here?” a man spoke up.
“We came to Instagram the hashtags out of you because we’re savage. We got no chill, right Brick?” Wiley said confidently.
Everybody except Jeff and I started laughing. They were hooting and hollering like they were drunk. They started strangling each other and headbutting the building from Wiley’s screw up. Wiley caught on, his eyes started to sparkle with tears. One slid down his cheek. This is why I hate humans.
I tossed the megaphone aside and pulled a revolver out of the trunk. I spun the cylinders. “Tonight’s the night dirtbags die.”
I took aim at a cackling middle aged man and pulled the trigger. He collapsed with a hole in his head. Everyone was dead silent. I wore the biggest smile on my face. The cult whipped out guns from practically nowhere.
“I don’t wanna die!” Jeff threw his hands up.
“Just who in tarnation do you think you are?” a woman screeched.
“The real question is what am I. I am the thing you warn your kids about. I am the night, I am the shadow. I am the flames that will make the sky rain ash. I am the darkness that will swallow the world. I am the righteous hand of long due justice. I am a demon!”
“Could’ve fooled me, you look like my adopted niece from the orphanage!” someone shouted. They roared with laughter once more.
I have a dark sense of humor but that was cruel. They didn’t have clue how that girl felt. They didn’t care. This is why I hate humans.
“Freak!” another one shouted. They were like a bunch of hyenas, cackling and howling and they were about to end up mounted on my wall.
I holstered the revolver and heaved the rocket launcher on my shoulder, “Well, you’re not wrong!”
Their eyeballs popped out of their sockets once they saw my heavy artillery. Their hands became shaky, most of them dropped their guns.
My finger slid onto the trigger. “When you get to where you deserve to go, tell him Brick sent you. Then apologize on my behalf.”
I pulled the trigger and braced myself for the most satisfying explosion. It didn’t come. Everyone was still standing there. Alive. I realized the rocket had gone out the other end of the launcher and it was zooming towards a nearby house.
“Oh come-” the elegant little home with a sign that said “Children at play” blew up in a ball of fire.
Wiley’s mixtape was still playing. “Firework” by Katy Perry played as pieces of burning wood sprinkled down from the sky. The fireball owned the night like the Fourth of July. Just like Katy Perry said.
“Well that’s the last time I buy from China,” I sucked air through my teeth.
“You maniac!” someone screamed.
A man, covered in ash and smoldering clothes, crawled from the wreckage. A survivor bent on revenge, perfect.
“Why would you do that? You just blew up my family for no reason!”
“Sorry, that’s my bad,” I raised my hand.
“You just killed my wife and nine children and you say ‘my bad!’ What is wrong with you?”
“A lot of things. Once again, I am sorry.”
“You ruined my life! You killed everyone I know and love!”
“There’s always someone there for you. You have to have other relatives. I’ve been to a nice support group-”
“You blow up my family then tell me how to grieve! How can one person be so cruel? You don’t even care, do you?”
“When you’re being so snarky, no.”
“Snarky? You murdered my family for no reason! I’m the last of my bloodline! I have to carry on my family’s legacy!”
“You have to have other family members.”
“My parent’s families died of poor conditions on the trip to America when they emigrated from Italy! My mom died of a heart attack due to the shock of my dad having a heart attack. My brother died in Vietnam and his pregnant wife lost the will to go on. She pulled a Padame and just stopped living! My sister is comatose, and she can’t have kids.”
“I don’t think the whole giving up on living things is medically possible.”
“I don’t think being this insane and cruel is medically possible.”
“I am not gonna lie. I am not a huge fan of the way you are talking to me right now.”
“You killed my family!”
“Now you’re repeating yourself.”
“It was my third daughter’s birthday!”
“She blew out the candles, and I blew her up.”
“You’re a psychopath!”
“I said I’m sorry. Jeez, you need to stop living in the past.”
“My entire family died five minutes ago!”
“And now it is time to move on. Everybody makes mistakes. Even a higher being such as I.”
“Do you expect me to forget about the family I just lost?”
“Do you hear that?”
“What? The burning of my family’s corpses, my home?”
“That is the sound of forgiveness.”
“Somebody stop this murdering lunatic!”
“Sir, I’m going to have to ask you to stop.”
“You shot an RPG at my house!”
“Yes, let’s continued this conversation never.” I threw my rocket launcher in the trunk and shot him with the crossbow.
I turned back to the horrified rednecks and my friends. “Now where were we?”
They stared agape at me and what I had done. Tonight was not the way I wanted it to go. What was gonna happen next? Will the other devil show up?
“I’m just gonna go before the police show up. We’ll pick up where we left off next time. Same time Thursday?” I shoved Wiley and Jeff in my car.
I hopped in the driver’s seat and sped off before the rednecks snapped out of their daze. I drove up to a hill outside of town. A creek slithered past it, providing the natural light of lightning bugs and the soothing sounds of nature. This is where we usually hung out. This is where I met Jeff and Wiley. I had stole their cat and tried dissecting it. I let it live in exchange for their services as my henchmen.
“Well, I’m going to have nightmares for the next month until I push the memory of this night into the deep trenches of my mind,” Jeff slammed his door shut as he got out.
“I don’t want to do that anymore,” Wiley squeaked.
“I don’t expect you guys to,” I sighed. “Not anymore.”
I laid back on the hood of my car. My friends joined me, “What I’m doing is dangerous. I don’t want you guys to get involved.”
“So you actually have a heart?” Jeff smiled grimly.
“Shut up,” I said.
Wiley looked to the night sky, “Do you guys just ever look at the stars and wonder if they’re promises for tomorrow’s light?”
“I see what you mean, Wiley.” Jeff beamed at the stars. “Their glimpses of the possibilities tomorrow can-”
“Stick ‘em up!” a man crept into sight. It was hard to see in the dark, but I could make out that he was African American. The man swept a gun up to us. “Gimme your money!”
Jeff hands shot up immediately. Wiley, on the other hand, was confused.
“Are you a botanist?” Wiley inquired.
“He has a gun! Does he look like a botanist?” Jeff snapped.
“What’s dat suppose to mean, boy?” the black man stepped closer, pistol turned sideways.
“You just don’t seemed interested in plants is all!” Jeff tried to reassure the man.
“It’s because of my ethnicity that you limit on what I can and cannot do!”
“I don’t mean that at all!”
“He’s a very angry botanist,” Wiley pointed out.
While this exchange was happening, I was slipping my revolver out of it’s holster. Right when the mugger was about ready to respond to Jeff, I flicked my gun up and shot him right in the chest. The man collapsed on the ground, dead. I slid off the hood of my car. I had enough killing for tonight.
“C’mon, let’s hide the body,” I sighed.
I started dragging the corpse when Wiley picked up the man’s gun. I froze. A cold drop of sweat sliced down my cheek. Never give Wiley a gun. He almost killed Jeff and I when I tried to teach him how to use a gun.
“Wiley, put the gun down,” I slowly reached toward him. Jeff backed up a few feet.
“Okay,” he shrugged.
I heard a loud bang. I felt my chest get ripped open. I let out a bloody gasp and fell down. My vision stretched and smashed together. I wasn’t suppose to die like this. I wasn’t suppose to die at all. This why I hate humans.
I shut my eyes for the final time. Suddenly, I felt a gust of wind blow at my hair. My eyes sluggishly opened. I was surrounded by an unsettling darkness. It seemed as though I was falling, but I couldn’t see the ground. I just kept floating downward. The wind was like daggers on my skin.
“I wonder how long this is gonna-” I slammed onto a hard surface.
Pain burned inside my skin. I twisted my sore neck to the side. I was in a dark, muddy field. Bones littered the floor. It reminded me of my backyard. That or a certain music video…
“If you love me, let me gooooooo!” a voice rang through the air.
“Is that Brendon Urie?” I asked.
A man in a torn white shirt came into view from above. He was falling. He was coming my way!
“Oh my god! It’s Brendon Urie!” I screamed.
Brendon crashed on top of me. I wheezed in happiness He didn’t even seem to notice I was there, but I was freaking out. Brendon Urie was my favorite human.
“This is the best moment of my life!” I squealed. “I mean afterlife!”
Brendon got up and started singing, completely ignoring me. I pulled myself up as well.
Brendon got up and started singing, completely ignoring me. I pulled myself up as well.
“Brendon!” I shouted. He didn’t answer. He couldn’t hear me.
“Hey, kid.” a voice casually said.
I spun around to see a tall, slender man with fiery red hair and scruff. He styled a maroon suit with a black tie. My eyes wandered from the man to Brendon Urie.
“Don’t mind him, he’s doing a music video with my permission of course,” the man waved his hand.
“Where’s the camera crew then?” I asked.
“Don’t worry about that! I’m Lucifer D. Satan, I’m the devil. Welcome to the Underworld,” the man extended his hand with a sincere grin.
I shook his hand uneasily, “Brick. Do you greet everyone who makes it here?”
“Not usually, only the ones that pique my interest. It’s not everyday you meet a racist against an entire species.”
“So you’ve heard of me?” I asked with a grin.
I peeked around Lucifer to see Brendon rip his shirt open as he sang a verse.
“Good God, you can grind meat on those things!” my eyes bulged.
“I’d appreciate it if you didn’t use his name here,” Lucifer’s eyes lit up like fire.
“Sorry,” I said quickly.
“Let’s continue this talk in my office, shall we?” Lucifer snapped his fingers. The sharp smell brimstone flooded my nostrils and the ground vanished.
“Why did you shoot him?” Jeff yelled.
Wiley’s lip quivered as he dropped the gun,“I thought a white flag was gonna come out and say ‘bang.’”
“What is wrong with you?” Jeff shook Wiley.
“You should blame the gun for shooting him,” Wiley pointed to the gun.
Jeff shook his head, “We need to hide his body.”
Jeff’s eyes drifted to the creek.
“It’s better than he deserves,” he said.
The next thing I knew, I was in a white chair in a pure white room. I was in complete shock. Should I been in eternal agony? I looked across from me to see Lucifer seated in a black leather swivel chair on the other side of a desk, matching my chair.
“Tea?” Lucifer questioned as he poured a cup of screaming souls from a kettle made from a human skull.
“Sure, why not?” I shrugged.
“That’s the spirit!” he poured me a cup.
“Ahhhhhh!” I recognized his pun when I accepted the cup.
“Ahhhhhh!” he pointed his index fingers at me.
We both took a drank. I grimaced as the bitter liquid slid down my throat while Lucifer grinned with contentment.
“It tastes like a life of crime because of poverty!” I pushed the cup away.
“Let’s get started, shall we?” Lucifer leaned back in his chair.
“Yeah, why aren’t I burning in agony, suffering for eternity?” I narrowed my eyes.
“The only one suffering here is me!” he leaned forward and slammed his hands on his desk. “We’re currently going under renovation, and everything is just a mess. They’re demanding we change our toilet paper from sandpaper to poison ivy! The rappers are in a turf war with the politicians, and the Hollywood agents are hanging out with the serial killers! That can’t be a good influence on them.”
“The Hollywood agents or the serial killers?” I frowned.
“I don’t know anymore!” he clasped a hand over his eyes.
“So I assume there’s a reason why I’m here?”
“Of course. Since all the renovating and reorganizing of Underworld is taking up my time, I’ve got an offer for you.”
“A deal with the devil. huh?”
“No. More like a job offer. What? Do you think I was gonna challenge you to a fiddling contest? I already have your soul, come on.”
“Yes, my lead demon. My right hand man.”
“Sounds intriguing!” I smiled devilishly.
“I just need to take a look at your resume and ask you a few question,” Lucifer snapped his fingers and a puff of flames revealed a portfolio. He flipped through its contents, deep in thought.
“You killed twenty-two people? Including your parents?” he asked in surprise.
“I hated them,” I said simply.
“I would kill my parents too if they named me Brick.”
“Do I meet your requirements?”
“You’re overqualified, by the looks of it! You put Hannibal Lecter to shame! Why did you get into killing and hating humans?”
“It’s kind of personal.”
“I won’t tell a soul.”
“It’s a long story.”
“I have an eternity.”
“Are you just gonna keep coming up with clever puns?”
“Until this place freezes over!”
“Well, it all started when I-”
Flames cracked on Lucifer’s desk to reveal a ringing telephone.
“I have to take this,” Lucifer picked up the phone. “Satan speaking.”
Lucifer sighed, “Hello, God.” There were pauses in between when Lucifer spoke. “Yeah by the way, I’m still expecting Michael Jackson to get down here. I don’t care if he was a legendary singer, you know what he did! What? You wanna see who? Yeah, I’m talking to him right now. Are you- whatever! Nevermind, I’ll tell him!”
Lucifer slammed the phone down, “He’s giving you another chance.”
“What? Why? I’m the worse person I know!” I exclaimed.
“It’s exactly that. He wants to give you a second chance at life because you so bad. He’ll also dismiss all your sins. Are you gonna take him up on his offer?”
“Oh my God!” I said in shock.
The phone started ringing again. Lucifer punched it with a fiery fist, obliterating it.
“See what happens when you say his name down here?”
I thought about my options. I could get my dream job and torture humans forever, or I could go back to my two friends. Maybe instead of complaining about how terrible humans are, I can make a difference. I can do some good, make them better. I could try loving humans!
“I want to go back,” I said confidently.
“As the priests’ say, ‘the door is always open.’ Goodbye for now, Brick.”
My eyes shot open, and I cut through throw the water and was welcomed by the night sky. I looked around; I was dripping wet. I was standing in a creek. Wiley and Jeff-- no they did not! I calmed my fury and jumped out of the creek and went back up the hill to my car. My friends were nowhere in sight.
Just as I reached for the car door, a haunting click of a gun stopped me.
“Turn around slowly,” a man said.
I obeyed. In front of me was a dozen a dozen gangsters. One of them stood out to me. He was a tall, white boy who looked like Eminem. He had on a shirt that said “Hello, my name is Brock.” He was a menacing looking fellow.
“Well if it isn’t the prince of prejudice, shootin’ down black folk like it’s his God given birthright!” the gunman said.
My mind flashed to the mugger.
“I am so sorry. To be fair, he was trying to rob me, but that’s beside the point! It was a complete accident, a misunderstanding. I could take it back if I could. I’m not a racist; I did not kill him because of his skin color.”
Brock stepped forward, “I cradled his dead body, screaming about how unfair the world is. I wept tears, man tears. He was a good kid, he was just dealt the wrong hand like all of us were.”
“Have you even kissed a black girl?” the gunman asked, waving his firearm in my face.
“Uh, no. I haven’t,” I said.
“Racist as charged,” he poked me in the chest with his gun.
“All I do is kiss black girls,” Brock high-fived with the gunman.
“How about I hook you guys up with my arms dealer?” I shrugged.
“Keep talkin’.” the gunman seemed interested.
“Good quality artillery for a reasonable price. You can even become a partner if you wish.”
I gave them my dealer’s information, and they laid off me. They said I was cool, and I could hang with them anytime.
“Call me if you need any advice or have any questions,” I fistbumped Brock.
We departed, and I drove off. I was speeding to Jeff’s house. I needed to see them. I jumped out of my car before I even put it in park. I bursted through the door and raced up the steps to Jeff’s room. I practically kicked the door off its hinges.
Jeff was trying to soothe Wiley who was bawling his eyes out in the corner of the room. They actually cared. They deserved better than who I once was.
“Look what you did, Brick!” Jeff snapped. There was an awkward silence before Jeff realized something. “Brick, you’re alive!”
Wiley looked up with his red, tear filled eyes. His face changed into a ray of joy.
“Brick!” Wiley threw his arms around me.
I patted his head with a smile.
“How are you-” Jeff started.
“Don’t ask.” I slugged his shoulder.
I pryed Wiley off me. “Guys, I want to change. No more killing, no more world domination. I just need you guys, my family. And to confirm my transformation, we’re gonna burn all my weapons.”
We started a fire in the backyard and unloaded all my weapons. We threw each one into the fire, recalling the crazy adventures we had. I reached around in my trunk and realized only a knife was left. I scooped up the knife and slowly walked to the fire. Jeff and Wiley beamed at me, ready for me to move on.
Suddenly, Wiley cut in front of me and bent over. “I dropped my mixtape cause it’s too fire! We might need to start another fire with this, baby!”
I tripped over Wiley and scorpioned on the ground with the knife in my heart. Blood sprayed all over the grass. There goes my second chance.
My eyes snapped open. I was in Lucifer’s office once again. He had his legs thrown over the other side of his chair with a devious smile.
He waved at me, “Hey, handsome.”
“Oh come on!” I shouted. “I was gonna change! I was alive for like ten minutes!”
“Did you miss me?” Lucifer asked.
“Why am I even here? I thought all my sins were forgiven!”
“You see, suicide is kinda considered a sin.”
“What do mean by kinda?”
“You technically killed yourself. Even if your friend was being an idiot, you stabbed yourself.”
“That’s stupid!” I threw my hands in the air.
“How about that offer, Brick?” Lucifer twisted forward and extended an ablaze blue hand.
“Can you make me look like Brendon Urie from “Emperor’s New Clothes?’ ” I raised an eyebrow.
“We’ll discuss your demon form later,” Lucifer replied.
“You’ve got yourself a deal,” I shook his hand, a tingly sensation went up my tattooed arm. I was officially working for the devil. The flames painlessly burned into my arm, signifying our agreement.
“Let’s start with tormenting some mortals. Do you have anyone in mind?” Lucifer drummed his fingers on his desk with a smile.
My signature, twisted smile played on my lips, “Two actually.”I was home, and it was good to be me again.