You arrive at the alley well beforehand, through the walkways of the Flit. The damnable thing might have a reputation for honesty, but that could simply mean that it’s skilled at silencing its victims.
You find no goat demons or criminals laying in ambush, and proceed to find a hiding spot for yourself. A walkway hidden behind some long-forgotten laundry gives an adequate view over the alley. The evening air is chilly and humid, but you’re prepared with warm clothing. You resist the urge to light a cigarette.
The devil shows up somewhat late, wearing a suit of deep crimson and a bright-red beret several sizes too large. You sigh and make your way down, to the great amusement of the devil.
"Feeling acrobatic? If this is how you arrive to every meeting, I no longer wonder why you’d wish to rid yourself of some buoyancy!" He tries to appear nonchalant, but he fails to hide the naked greed radiating from his stare. "You’re sure, then? For the Whisper, and the Screams?"
"No, I came here to receive your fashion advice. Of course I’m sure. Show them, please."
The devil proffers a suitcase with eight chittering jars, all appropriately stamped and labeled. The devil lays the case on a nearby barrel, and reaches out for an instrument from his jacket. The price is particularly good, and the devil need not know that you’d gladly pay it to remove the damn thing. You haven’t slept properly since you started doing the Widow’s messy business for her, and found out just what that messy business was. Clearing away competition is all well and good, but their families are another thing. The feel of tiny fists banging on your hands as you squeeze still comes back to you at night. You still gag every time you remember what the old candle maker looked like when you were done. Yes, you’re sure.
The devil asks you to open your mouth and stay still, as he carefully lowers the fork down your throat. Your vision blurs and everything around you seems to light up, while a chill runs through you. This is not nearly as bad as you had expected. You feel a pleasant numbness, as if floating free of your body. You let yourself enjoy the quiet and the light.
Slowly, the light dies down and you start to make out shapes. The numbness and feeling of being afloat, however, stay. You frown and reach out for your legs, as if to check whether they’re still there. You feel a disgusting lurch in your stomach when your inspecting hand fails to find them. As you look down, all you see is a haze of white smoke. Eyes darting around, you realize that you’re trapped in a glass container barely big enough to hold you. The shapes outside sharpen, and you recognize the looming gargantuan in the distance. It has your face.
As you try to take in the scene, you realize that your small prison of glass is held by the devil, now the size of a bell tower. Your yells go unheard, and your fist breaks apart like morning mist when you attempt to crack the glass around you. As you watch, the giant with your face nods at something the devil says, and responds shortly. It gives you an indifferent look, picks up the suitcase and begins walking away. You scream and scream as the shape grows distant, but it doesn’t look back even once.
As your yells die down and the cold despair of what has happened starts to truly sink in, you feel your new prison rising. The devil’s shining yellow eye fills your view as he presses his face against the glass.
"Yes, you were sure, weren’t you." he whispers. "I’ve got a special little place on my shelf just for you. I can’t wait to let you meet all the others. You’ll make such good friends."
edited by John Moose on 12/10/2016