Egochristmas #12: Cider
Okay, so this one barely got written. I was able to squeeze a little bit of time between study sessions, so yay! I had no idea what to do for this one, so I just started writing the Jims and they did most of the work for me.
You can also read it here
“The apples hide within, Jim,” Field Reporter Jim whispered, gesturing at a locked door, “But how do we enter the sealed abode? Perhaps a key will get us in! Or perhaps a torch to melt the lock! Or! Perhaps a diversion to entice the candy man from his hiding place!”
Cameraman Jim flipped around at the sound of footsteps behind him, pointing his beloved camera at the demon rounding the corner. His fellow Jim continued talking, but Jim found the demon much more interesting than Jim’s ramblings.
The demon looked up from the phone in his hands at the sound of Jim’s voice and rolled his eyes, pocketing the device and stopping in front of the Jims. He placed his hands behind his back and eyed them, “And what are you two doing, dare I ask?”
Field Reporter Jim jumped at the demon’s voice, letting out an unbecoming squawk, “Demon! Jim, the demon has discovered our plot! We must run, Jim! Run!”
Jim scurried away, rounding the corner before he collapsed. Cameraman Jim followed, keeping his camera focused on the demon.
When he was safely out of the demon’s sight, he stopped and zoomed in on the demon’s face. A shiver went down his spine at the gaze. What anger! Surely, if any man looked directly into such fury he would be turned to stone! Thank goodness for his trusty camera. The demon glared down in their direction before he stepped up to the candy man’s door and rapped on it. Jim sucked in a breath of air. What would happen when the door opened? No Jim had ever seen the two warring heads interact. Perhaps there would be a bloody war. Or maybe a simple fisticuffs. Or perhaps one would destroy the other with a single move.
Jim looked down at his fellow Jim then back to the patiently waiting demon. Surely Jim would understand? Without thinking too much about his decision, Jim rolled to the other side of the hall, lying flat on his stomach, his camera trained on the demon and the door. Luckily, the demon didn’t notice him.
Soon the door opened and the candy man appeared, a wide grin brightening his curly mustache, “Darkipoo! What brings you to my humble abode?”
The demon rolled his eyes at the greeting. Jim waited expectantly. Would this be the end of the shaky peace treaty between the two?
“Wil, I believe the Jims are expecting some of your cider. Two of them were just loitering out here a few moments ago.”
“Ah, yes! I was wondering when they would drop by! Where are they now?” the candy man questioned. He looked down the hall and Jim felt a sense of pride. Sneaky Jim had taught him well. Even the candy man could not see him!
“I’m afraid I might have scared them off.”
There was an element of sadness underneath the demon’s annoyance and Jim looked up at him surprised. Was he imagining things?
The candy man smiled softly, “Don’t worry, Darky. They’ll get used to you eventually. They like The Host, after all. You remember how uncomfortable he made them at first. You’re just a little more… intense.”
“I know, Wil. Thank you. Now might I have that cider? I may as well get it for them while I’m here. Who knows when they’ll think to come back.”
The candy man grinned cheekily, “Sure thing. But I think a little bit of payment is in order first,” he leaned forward and closed his eyes, his lips puckered.
The demon rolled his eyes, “Really, Wil? It’s not even for me.”
The candy man raised his eyebrows expectantly.
Jim watched in confusion. Was this some kind of demon ritual?
The demon sighed and leaned forward as well, softly pressing their lips together. Jim gasped at the sight. They were lovers! What a story this would be!
“Okay, now hand over the cider,” the demon drawled, pulling away slowly.
The candy man grinned, “As you wish, my dear,” he disappeared for a moment before coming back with a basket of bottles.
Jim almost started to drool. The candy man’s apples were so close yet so far. He zoomed in on the basket, his stomach clenching when he realized that he would still have to go through the demon to get his hands on the prize. If only Thieving Jim was here! He would know what to do!
The demon started down the hall towards Jim and he panicked. He scrambled back across the hall, crouching next to Field Reporter Jim. Even Sneaky Jim couldn’t get out of this situation.
The basket thumped to the ground in front of Jim and he squeaked, looking up at the demon in terror. The demon scowled back at him. No! He was not scowling! A small smile was pulled onto his lips and Jim was in awe.
“Give Mother Jim my regards,” the demon rumbled before he turned and walked away.
Jim watched him leave, flipping his camera from the basket to the demon’s back until he was out of sight. He looked down at Field Reporter Jim and placed the camera next to his hip, grabbing the basket and placing it on his lap. He pawed through the bottles, inspecting each one for any signs of tampering. When he found none, he looked back up at where the demon had disappeared.
Perhaps the demon was not a character to be feared. Perhaps he could be an ally to the Jims. Something told Jim he would be a very good ally indeed.