Friday, January 26, 2018

Microstory 765: Nickel

In the realms beyond this one, there exists a hierarchy of demons. Of course Adversary is the highest of these, and it is he who rules over all others. His top twenty-three advisors are known as the Apostates, and are all but completely autonomous in their dealings against hopeless humans. Most other demons under them must follow the chain of command, and submit to their superiors. The lowest of the lows, however, are the nickels. They’re considered to be so insignificant that the Apostates don’t even bother giving them responsibilities. While mid-level demons are busy concocting new and interesting ways of torturing people in Hell, and beguiling those in heaven, nickels are just sort of always around. Hell is an open place. People aren’t most of the time locked in cages, or chained to great boulders. Instead, they travel freely, hoping to carve out some small shred of safety somewhere. Nickels find joy in being nuisances to the people they come across. They often cause physical harm, but spend most of their time just being incredibly annoying, preventing residents from finding any level of peace. If a nickel finds you, it might sing the same lyric over and over again in your ear, sometimes for days on end, until it gets bored and moves on. It might throw track ballast at you when you’re trying to sleep, or drench you in itching powder. If a group of nickels incidentally comes together, they’ll form something called a licking party, which humans will find difficult to escape. This all may not seem like that big of a deal, but nickels number in the hundreds of millions, and never sleep. When The Words predicted that hell would reign on Earth, they primarily meant that nickels would break free from their realm, and come into ours. And when the armies of evil are finally vanquished, it will be the scattering of nickels that remain, possibly for years to come.

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