Posted by: The Amoeba | February 23, 2011

Screwtape The Third: Comfort, Be Damned

Screwtape The Third is the grandson of Senior Demon Screwtape I (or, Screwtape the Elder), who was active in the North Sea subregion during the middle years of Earth’s 20th century, when Hell was still configured as a state bureaucracy under First Citizen Lucifer. The theft and topside publication of Screwtape the Elder’s instructional letters to the late Junior Demon Wormwood forced a complete reorganization of netherworldly operations, culminating in the formation of Hadean Estates Luxurious Living, Luciferan Limited Liability Company (H.E.L.L. LLLC) and the restructuring of the former Infernal Service into a corporate workforce.

Despite this disaster and the catastrophic losses of position and prestige that he suffered, Screwtape I, a sly devil, survived several rounds of downsizing and, citing ‘the virtues of experience’, rapidly rose through the ranks of the new company. He is currently Senior Vice President for North American Operations, and has a seat on H.E.L.L. LLLC’s Board of Directors.

He handpicked his grandson to lead the firm’s Pacific Northwest (North America) subregion, reasoning that even though his wasn’t the sharpest pitchfork in the furnace, he should do well enough in a prime and growing recruitment area for the accommodations – significantly improved over earlier designs – that the company was selling. He also assigned Wormsap, a second cousin twice removed of the late Wormwood, to assist Screwtape III, despite knowing that Wormsap was spying for Printphubar, the East Asia SVP, who had a space crunch and coveted Screwtape III’s generous allocation. Screwtape the Elder wished to see whether his protege would recognize, and deal with, the challenge.

Screwtape III came to the attention of the blogosphere when a helicopter accident injected, um, an objectionable being into his territory. Now, they’re in damage control mode. To read about their deviltry, go here. An excerpt …

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     

“Well, Wormsap, I’d have to say that, in the little matter of your saintly intrusion, we got off better than we expected.”

“Indeed, sir. I hardly expected the Adversary to allow his spy to leave the Hadean Estates without even so much as a press release. But your negotiating tactic – reminding the Enemy’s representatives that they’re having a hard enough time topside managing all the messiahs that they’ve got, without adding any more to the mix – it was a stroke of pure deviltry!

Thank you, Wormsap. Grandfather thought so too. Not least because he’s the one who thought of it. But so curse me, if you breathe a word of that to anybody …

“No, sir. I have no wish to be sentenced to the daffodil fields. Those blessed flowers burn my fetlocks and give me hives. The itching is (ptui) redemptive.”

“Watch your mouth, demon. Better still, watch your quotas. This episode didn’t cost us what we feared, but it wasn’t cheap either. Pure deviltry’s still left us with a lot of unanticipated vacancies, and word’s come up from Lucifer Himself that we’d better recover the revenues PDQ, or all hell’s …”

“Yes, sir.”

You are taking steps, then?” …

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