The road to Hell

A short (tongue-in-cheek) story about God and the Devil. The intention was to write their relationship as if God was the boss of some huge company and Lucifer one of his employees.

The second hand continued its majestic sweep around the face of the clock. Lucifer had often wondered about the clock. For the most part it looked like every other timepiece on display here above the firmament. It silently indicated seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, years, and aeons just like the others. The difference was this clock was designed to only make one complete revolution and so was counting down to zero. Nobody knew what would happen when it finally completed its revolution.

Looking at it here in the waiting room made him nervous, made him more nervous. Lucifer knew he must have done something wrong otherwise he wouldn’t have wouldn’t have been summoned. That’s my problem, he thought, I’m always getting things wrong and messing up.

In contrast to the clock the office door was simpler. Merely frosted glass with a handle made of ebony gaboon wood. Lucifer examined the frosting as it swirled within its glass cage. Sometimes it condensed together and appeared to be almost bursting out of the frame, at other times it spread itself evenly throughout the glass and was content.

The light above the door changed from red to green. This was the symbol that it was time to enter the room so Lucifer stood nervously. He walked over to the door and patted down his loose wing feathers before pushing on the handle and entering the room.

And in the room was God.

Being in the presence of God isn’t a physical process. There is no solid body to focus on just a feeling inside that God is surrounding you. Lucifer sensed God in the blood that ran through him and in the voice that spoke inside his head.

“Lucifer.” said the voice, “Thank you for coming.”

“I came as soon as Metatron informed me.” Lucifer spoke with a nervous edge.

“Do you know why I have asked for this audience with you?”

Can an angel lie to God? Not that Lucifer wanted to. The angel’s problem was that he could think of several reasons why God would summon him here and he wanted to see which of his mistakes God was going to pick up on.

“Your silence” said God, “stands as a sign that you do know why I need to talk to you but are unwilling to divulge the information.

“Sorry” mumbled the angel.

“I know you well Lucifer and I understand you are driven by a desire to be helpful. However I increasingly find the manner of your help increasingly counter-productive.”

Inside Lucifer was a foundry of emotions. Embarrassment mixed in with pride to fill the angel with a burning heat. Surely God could understand that he had never deliberately done anything wrong?

“When first you were Formed it was to stand as the Guardian of Light. Your charge was to prevent darkness from engulfing the universe and you performed this task admirably.”

“Thank you Lord.”

“Then came the creation of humans and for some reason this new creation started to affect your judgement. Take for example what happened with the tree.”

“I know I let you down.” Lucifer’s wings drooped slightly, “But I thought it was the right thing to do. I thought the reason you’d planted that tree right in the middle of Eden was so that it would be discovered.”

“As I explained at the time. The tree was planted to stand as a lesson to human’s of the need for responsibility. Just because you want to do something that doesn’t mean you should do it. By encouraging humans to eat of the tree you created a schism between them and Heaven that may never heal.”

“I thought I was doing the right thing.” Lucifer’s voice was nothing more than a whisper.

“I know Lucifer and that is why I forgave you. However there have been other indiscretions as well. Once Human’s were dependent on the sun for heat. However you gave them the ability to create their own heat and freed them.”

“They were so cold Lord. During the nights I could see how much they suffered. As the Guardian of Light I just felt if befell upon me to help ease their suffering.” Lucifer’s cheeks were red, his voice inaudible to all but the most sensitive of hearing.

“I know your motives were pure. By giving the humans the ability to produce their own heat and light you have placed them on a path they may not yet be mature enough to take. They will discover ways of producing heat and light that unlocks the energy of the universe. You cannot see how that journey ends and now they have eaten of the tree I am honour bound not to interfere with their destiny.

“I have not called you here to chastise you Lucifer. I merely ask that in the future you consider the full consequences of your actions. No matter how strongly we are motivated by the need to do good it is not always possible to see the final result.”

The air ruffled through Lucifer’s wings. God’s words always found away of chastising the angel without actually handing out a punishment.

“Now Lucifer, I would like you to reflect on what I have said whilst preparing for your next challenge.”

“Lord?”

“I’m giving you the task of watching over a town, two towns technically, I want you to guide their development and help the inhabitants in whatever challenges are presented.”

Lucifer’s embarrassment began to subside, leaving the feelings of pride to dominate his thinking. A chance to influence the destiny of a two towns. He could guide them to become the greatest of all cities on Earth. Their citizens would lead the world in advancing the human race.

“Thank you Lord. May I ask the names of these twin towns?”

“Sodom. And Gomorrah. I implore you Lucifer to contemplate on the responsibility being given to you. This is both a great honour and a great test for you. I need you to show me what you are capable off.”

“Do not worry Lord.” Lucifer smile beamed, “I will ensure the names of these towns live on throughout history.”

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