Creative Writing Prompts: November, To Have and To Hold

You started with an imp. They were the least powerful demon you could summon, easier to subdue, but they taught you a lot. They wanted to be free as much as any other, and they were as tricky as their larger brethren. So the Imps were good training ground.

Cali never wanted to progress beyond imps. It wasn’t that she thought they were better than the later demons; it was that they were just such a pain in the ass. If an imp was this annoying, surely the others would be worse. So she’d summoned the imp, couldn’t get rid of it, but didn’t want to go any farther.

So she and the imp had come to an agreement. She would grant it an unheard level of freedom for a bound spirit, and it made sure she wasn’t bothered by other demonic entities that would normally seek out those who had made the sort of pacts she had. 

Between the two of them, they settled into a routine, and she was surprised to discover after a few years that she almost thought of the imp as a friend. One that would rip her soul from her body as soon as the agreement between them was nullified, but one who was fun to have a movie night with in the meantime. Also, the imp was required to listen to her complain, and well, when you’re talking about people who were awful to you and the entity listening is a demon? Things start to occur to you.

Cali wasn’t evil, despite the whole making a pact with a demon thing, so she never held a single bad day against someone. But an established pattern of behaviour? Specifically, an established pattern of abuse? Well, that was worth giving a name to a demon who was bored with the material plane and interested in making mortals suffer. After a few instances of this, the imp realized this could be a mutually beneficial thing, and began to ask her about her day.

She was aware the imp was trying to lead her to lower her definition of someone who deserved a visit, but she held tight to it. It was enough to put some of the challenge back into the relationship. It really was the last thing they needed to resolve between them. They had their little game, the imp had its souls to torment, and Cali didn’t have to worry about proceeding on a path she no longer wanted to go down.

Until she received a letter from her old mentor.

Really, she should leave the old coot to rot, but she did still owe him a debt, even if he started her on a path that would have led to her destruction, she was absolutely certain. After all, she’d decided to give the whole thing up. That was more than enough evidence she wasn’t cut out for it, in her opinion. Surely, her mentor should have seen that.

But it didn’t matter in the end. She owed him, and that bound her almost as tight as her pact with the imp.

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by | Nov 27, 2023