Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Devil is in the details

When Alma awoke there was a strange man by her hospital bed. At first she thought he was another one of the doctors sent in to tell her she only had months to live. When the stranger spoke, she immediately knew who he was.
"I can give it all back to you, your health, your youth, whatever you wish."
"Everything? What's the catch? All I have to do is sell you my soul?."
He didn't answer.
Having been a lawyer, she’d used guile, craft and deceit to win her cases; she wasn't going to just roll over for the devil.
"I suppose you have a contract?"
He produced the document and handed it to her.
"This is going to take some time to read."
"Nobody reads it, it's mostly boilerplate, but read it if you like. I can wait.”
Alma adjusted her glasses. She’d been finding loopholes in documents for decades. She looked up when she was finished.
"Here's what I want; to be healthy and thirty-two again because that was a particularly good year. That should do it."
The devil looked her over suspiciously then he handed her a pen.
"Has anyone tried to get out of this contract?"
"Oh, all the time, but it’s iron clad."
Alma signed and the devil reached for it.
"Not so fast! Where are my youth and health?"
With a snap of his fingers she was young and vibrant again.
She hastily wrote a few lines on a note pad and handed back the contract and the note.
"What's this?"
"Read it."
"I Alma Grigg am giving written notice that I terminate this contract."
"Good try" said the devil
Alma just shook her head, "Paragraph thirty states that either party can terminate this contract at anytime without penalty provided the letter is hand delivered."
The smooth countenance of the man that had entered the hospital room went blood red. She sensed that he was about to do her bodily harm. Alma repeated, "Without penalty."
His face contorted, he burst into flames and disappeared.
Alma got her frumpy clothes on and left the hospital thinking it
was time for a new wardrobe.