Monday, September 30, 2013

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“Why?” Winston asked.  Judging by his expression, he seemed to think that I had no use for the information beyond causing him the supreme inconvenience of having to look it up.

“It doesn’t matter why,” I snapped.  I intended for it to sound like I was his boss and I was putting him in his place, but I’m pretty sure it wound up sounding more like I was a petulant teenager who was fiercely protecting his privacy despite having no logical reason to do so.  Actually, that might not have been too far off.  “Just look it up,” I ordered.  “Quinn Madsen.”

Winston sighed.  “I realize that you think this is an unusual name,” he said patronizingly, “But I doubt that you have a clear understanding of just how many people get run through the assignment process down here.”

“So?” I said.  I hated that I couldn’t stop playing the role of the frustrated adolescent.  Whether I was seventeen years old or not, I’d hoped to exert my power as ruler of Hell with a little more elegance.

“So he needs more information, jackass,” Dramien snarled.  I felt his breath on the back of my neck as he spoke.  I willed myself not to cringe, but I couldn’t stop my hairs from standing on end.

“Fine,” I said.  “Like what?”

“Oh, the usual things,” Winston mused wearily.  “Middle name, birth date, death date, birthplace, deathplace, COD, notable offenses, et cetera et cetera and so on and so forth.”

“Okay, well, he died a few days after me,” I said, trying to remember.  “I think it was March 11th.”

Dramien chuckled softly.  He didn’t like me, and I didn’t have a clear understanding of why, but I was pretty sick of it regardless.

I turned around and spat, “What the fuck is your problem?”

“I realize that you think this is an unusual date,” he began with a condescending smirk.

I interrupted by turning to Winston and growling, “Two thousand and twelve, anno fucking domini.”

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