Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Reviewing the Plan

"So let me quick run through this to make sure I have it right," I said, beginning to get annoyed, but worrying that if I got too uppity the demon in front of me would start ripping my limbs off.  "I go into the Department of Transportation carrying a knife dipped in human blood, which I'm going to attempt to stab Azraal with.  My attempt will fail, Azraal will kick my ass, and this is all according to plan?"

"You only need to succeed enough to convince Azraal that your plan was to bring him down on your own," Gavsot corrected me calmly.  "If you come close enough to succeeding to be a threat, he will consider your effort to be legitimate and without guile.  Once you fail, you must flee the department on foot.  He will follow you with the hope of capturing you in his own territory and making it easier for him to strip you of your title and assume control of Hell."

I was starting to understand.  "So while he's chasing me," I finished, "You and your men jump out and stab him for real?"

"Precisely," the General said.  He seemed pleased.  "You are both the bait and the diversion."

"If this backfires," Gus reminded me warily, "Azraal becomes the new Devil and you're stuck in Hell as a powerless human just like any of the other tortured souls down here."

Gavsot shrugged as if to acknowledge Gus' remark but dismiss it as unimportant.  I thought for a moment and then said, "General Gavsot--where will your ambush be set up?  I take it storming the Department of Transportation in full force would require too much manpower?"

"Demonpower," Gus mumbled to himself.

Gavsot looked grave.  "I could attack in full force," he said sternly.  "I do not wish to.  It is unwise to consolidate all military power in the same place."  His tone of voice made it seem like if I asked for too much backup, he would withdraw his support and leave me out in the cold. 

"Okay," I said nervously.  "Surgical strike it is.  So where will the ambush be set up?"

"Directly outside the gates of the Department of Transportation," Gavsot said.  "You must survive long enough to escape the building."

I swallowed.  "Okay.  Let's do it."


  1. You have a close quotation mark for the first sentence, but you are missing the start quotation mark