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The Secret of the Attic

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Belphegor flopped himself down in the back row of the emptying classroom. “How long is this going to take, human?” he asked, his voice already thick with sleep.

“It’ll take as long as it takes,” she said from the closet behind him.

“Just let me call some Little D’s and we can go home and nap properly.”

“No, Belphegor. The teacher asked me to tidy the supply closet so I am going to do it,” she said, while removing boxes from the floor to the main room. “Unless you’re offering to help?”

He sunk deeper into his pillow before standing up. “Get out of the way,” he said with a heavy sigh, using his tail to quickly drag all of the boxes that littered the floor of the closet out into the main room.

“Thank you!” she said, before they heard the sound of glass breaking. “Oh no…” The hands that she'd been about the clap happily dropped to her sides.

“It’s fine, it came from somewhere on the top shelf,” Belphegor said, motioning lazily. “Somewhere on the left side.” Ready for sleep, he stepped over the bench and folded his arms back over his pillow.

Tossing her school jacket aside, she rolled up her sleeves, and stepped into the large closet. ‘Everything out today. Clean the room tomorrow. Organize and replace everything the day after,’ she thought. ‘Piece of cake.’

Belphegor could hear her dragging the ladder out, heard her sweeping up the glass and dust before grunting and lifting more objects. Clamping his pillow over his head he tried to drown out the noise. He stewed as he waited for her to quiet down. It would be easy enough to fall asleep, but it wouldn’t be a good sleep.

Fed up, he got out of the bench seat and scooped her off the ladder. “Out of the way, Alarm Clock,” he said, setting her down outside the door. It had already been well over an hour of her disturbing his rest. ‘I’ve been more than patient!’ he thought. 

With little effort, between demonic strength and three appendages, he managed to pass all of the remaining items back to her without ever using the ladder.


“I don't want to deal with this any more right now,” he said while taking in her flushed appearance. “Let’s go home. You can clean more tomorrow when it’s Beel’s turn to watch you.”

“But…”

“You can’t possibly want to do more work, you have almost every desk covered in boxes already,” he said, picking up his pillow and their bags. “Come on, those idiots are already going to complain that I’m bringing you home looking like I dropped you down one of the chimneys.”

She looked down at herself. ‘He’s not wrong,’ she thought. “Hold this up like this for just a second?” she asked, presenting her unfurled jacket to him, high enough to cover his sight.

“You want me to block out the illusory sunlight, and stand here like an idiot?”

“Yup!”

If he hadn’t been curious, he would have rolled his eyes and started walking home, but humans always found ways to surprise him. So he waited. ‘She’s lucky I don’t have wings,’ he thought. ‘I’d fly us home and actually drop her down a chimney for wasting time like this.’

He heard the rustle of fabric near the back alcove of the room. “You can’t be serious,” he said, dropping the jacket, just as she shook out her green shirt with a snap.

“Belphegor!” she said, her admonishment shrill. “Turn around!”

He tilted his head back as he rolled his eyes at her. “You realize that the chalk alcove only absorbs chalk dust, right?”

“Yeah…” she said dejectedly, looking at her arms. “I realized that a little late.”

Glancing back down he looked her over with amusement. Skin still flushed and sweaty, all of the dust she had stirred up now clung to her.

“Quit being a perv and look away!” she said, holding her grubby shirt to her chest.

She looked more ashen than usual, with only the brightness of her brassiere cutting through the grime. ‘How am I ever going to explain I didn’t get her filthy?’ he wondered, before turning around. “C’mon. I'm tired of waiting," he said, and took the few steps required to put his back to her. ‘Mortals and their modesty.'

When she finally walked past him, sleeves still rolled and shirt half unbuttoned, he held out her jacket to her.

“Could you hold on to it?” she asked, showing him her mucky hands.

He shrugged and they kept walking. The jackets were a pain to wash with all of their tassels and sashes.


Finally through the front doors, he watched her head towards the library. Only his hand grabbing the back of her collar halting her. “Where do you think you’re going?”

“I’m supposed to meet Lucifer shortly for a progress report,” she said, looking up at him with a dark smudge across her cheek.

A brief thrill lit up inside of him at the idea of her presenting herself like a chimney sweep, but he pushed it aside when he saw the way the sweat had accumulated lines of dirt on her chest, and how it dripped down further out of sight. ‘Ugh, he’ll think something stupid like that I stripped her and rolled her home in the dirt.’

He let go of her collar and shifted the items in his hands before holding out her backpack to her. “Put this on your front for a second?” he asked, as innocently as possible.

Raising an eyebrow at his request, she slid her arms through the straps. ‘Weirder things have been asked of me,’ she thought.

It wasn’t until the floor rose up to meet her that she began to kick her legs. “Belphegor! I am not a piece of luggage! Put me down!”

His hand snug between the straps and her back, he hurried away with her in the opposite direction.

It wasn't long until he was kicking his boot against the bottom of a door. “Asmo open up. I have a present for you.” He yawned widely, unable to cover it with either of his full hands.

The door quickly swung open, and Asmodeus looked expectantly at Belphegor. “Well?”

Nodding his head to the side, Belphegor indicated to the human that had gone silent.

Amodeus recoiled with a grimace. “What hell pit did you drop her in. You fiend!”

“And this is why I didn’t let you go to Lucifer first,” he said wryly.

“I’m fine. Let me down!” she said, beginning to flail her limbs again.

Raising her and the bag higher, Belphegor made sure she didn’t strike the floor. “I present to you our pact-holder,” he said, thrusting her, and the bag, into Asmodeus’ grasp before walking away.

“Why are you sparkly?” Belphegor heard Asmodeus ask loudly as he rounded the corner away from them.

“Idiot,” he thought. Whether he meant himself or the human he wasn’t sure, but it didn’t matter, he could finally sleep.