Lucifer sat back in his chair and regarded Gader’el with calculated coldness.

 

“It is fast approaching the time of sacrifice.” he said, looking down at the file that Gader’el had left on his desk.

“This report is painfully thin Gader’el. Should I be worried?”

Gader’el swallowed before responding.

“I haven’t left anything out.” he said, nervously, “He has spent many years travelling across Asia Minor and the sub-continent. He appears to have acquired a taste for the Eastern philosophies.”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow at this.

“Oh?”

“Yes.” Gader’el continued, “He has been spending a lot of time with the Buddhist’s. That being said, he has also travelled west and visited the Celtic Druids of the British Isles. Overall I would say these past eighteen years have been rather enlightening for the young man.”

“My word.” Lucifer responded thoughtfully, “The boy is full of surprises.”

“Now, what of the competition? Do they suspect anything?” he asked.

Gader’el felt a small pang of annoyance at this. Why couldn’t he just read the bloody report? It was all there in black and white and in very specific detail. To date, he had devoted roughly thirty years to this job and, if he was honest, was starting to get a little pissed off with the lack of recognition his effort was receiving.

“I have seen nothing that would lead me to believe that they are aware that anything is amiss.” he pointed at the file before continuing, “I have created a detailed log of every celestial interaction that I was able to observe. Time, date, place and the celestial being in question. It’s all catalogued. I would like to add that I have, on occasion, had to place myself at considerable risk to obtain this information. There was a very hairy incident in Ireland with some druids and a bull called Finnbhennach that I would… ”

“Never mind that.” Lucifer said waving him to silence. “As long as they suspect nothing I am satisfied. There is, however, one last thing that must be done before he can begin his ministry.”

He opened his desk drawer and pulled out a tightly rolled scroll. The document had a faint ethereal glow about it that made it hard to focus on. He beckoned Gader’el over and handed it to him.

“Everything you have worked for depends on this.” he said, “Once he starts his ministry it is out of our hands.”

Gader’el opened the scroll and quickly scanned the first few lines of text.

“It’s a test? You want me to test him?”

“Yes. However, it is imperative he does not realise that it is a test. You must tempt him, because in tempting you won’t be influencing how he reacts. He will be making his own free choice. We must be certain that he will respond to the temptations of power in a very specific way, otherwise our deception will be revealed.””

“Right… ” Gader’el was skeptical, “Why exactly would he be tempted by anything I tell him?”

“Simple.” Lucifer said, chuckling, “You will tell him that you are me.”

“That seems a little…”

Lucifer’s subtle hand wave had cut him off again. With a soft popping sound Gader’el vanished into the aether.

The Morning Star picked up the file from his desk, placed it carefully in the drawer and closed it. He spent a few minutes idly re-arranging the name plate on the desk before finally giving in to his inner monologue.

“I better keep an eye on this one” he said aloud and promptly disappeared.

 

~

 

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