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Friday, June 15, 2018

Microstory 865: Cashier or Credit

After seven years, the war is finally over, and wouldn’t you know it, it ended in peace. No side truly won over the other, but compromises were made. Hell would continue to house all the dead bad people, but exactly what qualifies as bad would be drastically altered. There would also be limitations on the conditions of the hellscape, rendering the place more depressing and banal than torturous. Heaven would be turned over completely to be run by the hypostates, with very little cross traffic, save for checks and balances. Earth would be left mostly to its own devices, with an interesting twist. Any demon wishing to relinquish their connection to the other realms would be free to start new lives, alongside living humans, with no repercussions. The apostates agreed to this, not thinking it would make any difference. A surprisingly high number of demons wanted to live with mortals, which was actually rather beneficial to the global economy. The world was primed to restabilize after the apocalypse, but that didn’t mean demons were automatically awarded decent jobs, or that they would be happy about it, or that they would not revert to their old ways. Most of them ended up with dead-end, minimum wage, high school jobs. If you were a law-abiding demon who went an entire workday without doing anything with trash, you were lucky, just that good, or had brilliant connections. With this in mind, I get into the line at the grocery store that’s being run by a demon cashier. The woman ahead of me is wearing that infamous tattoo, indicating that she was a warrior for The Lightbringer during the war, which explains why she’s the only other human willing to risk it. I’m here because demons don’t bother me that much, and the other lines are far too long. It doesn’t hurt that the demon cashier is extremely beautiful. I identified as pansexual even before the armies of darkness brought hellfire to the surface, as many people did. I know a lot of others started questioning their sexuality when that happened, never having before been confronted with the puzzle of how to feel about someone who we would best be described as a monster. I had no problem with it, and were we not literal born enemies, I would have considered a relationship with a demon years ago. I treat individuals individually, and try not to judge people until I know more about what they’ve been through. The warrior takes her groceries, along with the fiver that the cashier tried to pocket. She doesn’t even argue about it; she just gets it back, and walks away. I throw my own stuff on the belt, and try to swipe my credit card. The cashier tells me that the reader is broken, and she’ll have to swipe it for me. Extra cautious from what she tried to do to the warrior, I watch her carefully, easily catching her slipping the card into her cleavage while replacing it with another one. She tries to give me the wrong one, likely hoping I’ll put it away without even looking. I politely ask for the right one, and remind her to return this other one to its rightful owner. “And one more thing,” I say. Her eyes dart over to her supervisor. This may be the straw that causes the camel to fire her. “Would you like to get some coffee sometime?”

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