A/N: Oh, yes. I've got you. You're hooked.
Summary: "'My name?' he asks, leaning towards me, enough as to where I can see his red irises adjusting to the change in light. The scent of burnt charcoal is coming off his skin so strongly that my mind fogs up, dizzily comprehending our close proximity, his lips stiffly forming his next words. 'My name is Lucifer'." Damn, sin has never been this good.
Summary2: The Devil gives JT DiCarlo one week to explain to him why she deserves to live. At the end of her week, he makes his decision of her fate...but what if JT doesn't want to live anymore? Why? Why, do you ask? Why does this silly dumbass of a teenage girl who has absolutely everything going for her want to throw everything away? Ladies and gentlemen, the answer is simple: She fell in love with the Devil himself.
A/N2: I feel so god-like right now. You guys have no idea. Okay, here we go. I'm giving you, the reviewer, the power to change and warp this story into whatever fashion you see fit. You can offer your opinion as to whether JT should live based on the explanations and reasons that she gives to Lucifer. Personally, I think that's just short of wonderful. However, I already have an ending for this story in mind. Yes, it is already typed, uploaded, titled and saved....but...I know that all of you will hunt me down and shoot me for such an ending. Thus, my open reviews are now in creation. For your opinion to be heard, written and put into story format, I need to be persuaded as to why such an ending should be fabricated. Reviewers, the fate of JT DiCarlo is now in your hands.
"He's beautiful..." I mumble, my mouth full of pretzel as I show my love for the snack item to the world, its fluffy, warm goodness promoted.
"I know," my friend Ashley says shortly, hefting my dropped bags over her shoulder. "Hon, we can't stop in the middle of the hall like this--"
"It's the Friday before Christma--!"
"--he's new, Ash!"
I stand in front of the display, my eyes wide. Ashley turns around, the look on her face suggesting that she's spent the prime of her existence in a convent that's against men. "I swear, JT, I don't care how hot the new....Oh...my...god...Who is that....?"
I've won. Spreading my arms wide with a huge grin plastered on my face, I swallow the pretzel in my mouth and stand majestically in front of the black and white poster, depicting a crazily gorgeous male clad in only a striped scarf with a moose on it. "This is the newest and hottest Abercrombie & Fitch model."
Blushing furiously, my shopping companion swiftly drops all of our purchased items before her and steps closer to the entrance of the booming store, the bass of the music making me inwardly cringe. Ashley's face goes completely lax as she stares up at the black-haired beauty, a silly sort of half smile on her face. "What a sexy beast..."
Nodding appreciatively, I cross my arms about my chest and crane my neck upwards, taking in every pixel of his near-naked body. Lord, he's gorgeous. He's just one of those guys that have it all. The perfectly tossed hair, the five o'clock shadow, the pristinely shaped abs. He's simply got it all, no doubt about it. "Probably foreign..." I say.
"You've got that right."
"Y'know how I was considering going lesbian?" Ashley asks, tilting her head sideways to get a more full view.
I smirk. "Yup."
"I've so changed my mind."
"Thank God for that."
"Just look at him...." she whispers, clearly transfixed by his male-ness.
Distinctly, I hear the sound of a rolling pin chasing me in the distance, but I quickly write that off as a side effect of having my attention brought else where. ("Mommy! Look what I found!")
However, his square jaw and note-worthy white teeth are definitely not in the same league as those eyes of his. That stare is entirely too ridiculous to be on a human being. I swear, he has to be a demi-god, at least. Nobody can look into the lens of a camera with such an intense gaze of longing, so much that several other teenage, spirity girls have stopped amidst their shopping endeavors to pause and brood in front of the Abercrombie model's perfectness. Other people (teenage girls) are starting to flock around us.
"JT?" I hear Ashley breathe beside me, her expression that of half surprise and half relief.
I make a weak noise of recognition.
"I think I just had an orgasm..."
"Isn't it great?"
Some girl speaks up behind me. "It's wonderful..."
I simply stand there in front of the store, blocking the entrance for some very disgruntled looking males who would absolutely die without their factory ripped jeans and hunky-man gift cards for their cheerleader girlfriends. ("Sasha, but that thing down, you don't know where it's been....Oooh...Oh, my. Is that Autumn Apple Pie?")
Not fifteen minutes ago, I survived the bane of all that I am by stepping foot inside of a ditzy Yankee Candle store to purchase a goddamn fifty dollar, Autumn Apple Pie scented candle. Does some sporty, wishy-washy, blonde soccer mom think she's going to steal my Ma's Christmas present?
No way in hell.
My brain slowly registers that fact that I am indeed in a public establishment and etiquette suggests that I should wipe the drool off the corner of my mouth after staring at an extremely hot guy before confronting a housewife about the invalidity of her findings. I hurriedly do this before sharply elbowing Ashley in her ribcage.
"What?" she hisses.
I blink. Blink again. Blink some more. Yes, there's the Verizon guy pawning off booklets to innocent passerby, there's the lady standing in front of the Cheesecake Factory with a tray of free samples, there are a whole bunch of girl in behind me with dazed looks on their faces and...
The Abercrombie model with my candle.
I would not lie or make up such a thing for I am not that cruel.
My mouth drops open for a second time that day as I watch the model that I was just staring at (I whip around to face the poster to confirm that I'm right) is definitely doing what I think he is.
In short, he's being a tantalizing asshole instead of getting banged by some far out Victoria Beckham/Paris Hilton combo.
He is definitely not a fabrication of my imagination and definitely more sexy in real life.
What really gets me is that no matter how long and how hard I stare, I cannot shake off the weird feeling I get when I see the model is wearing red contacts. (Of all colors!)
My eyes practically bug out of my skull and I cannot, for the sake of my sanity, look away. The Abercrombie model (in all of his gloriousness) is making a mockery of a little, five-year old girl. Apparently, that rolling pin noise that I heard earlier was easily mistaken with that of an expensive Yankee candle cheerily making it's way down the marbled linoleum floor and into the hand of a chipper little blond girl. Also apparently, this jack off of a "model" has taken it from her and is now tantalizing her with it.
Being a complete and total jerk, the Abercrombie model (I dunno what else to call him, but what else is he but thus?) is wielding it above the girl's head and making her jump like a broken toy for it, wailing at the top of her lungs as she screams about how he "stole her treasure". The mother, I notice, is going along with him, teasing her daughter as well.
"Jump, Sasha, jump!" She's calling out like a maniac and laughing like a hyena, clinging to the model's other arm as she does so.
What kind of sick ass joke is this?
"Ashley!" I hiss between clenched teeth, jabbing her in the side again.
"Christ, JT, what?"
This is the point where I can no longer properly form words or sentences. "I-I...he...the Aber...the..." I helplessly juggle my meanings, gesturing at the weird scene with my mother's candle and the poster, crossing my arms in the air and making vague pantomimes.
"Spit it out, Forrest," Ashley says dryly.
I want to scream out in frustration and almost actually do it.
In stead, I wheel around and march towards the woman, the girl and the moron with my candle. Unfortunately, I'm practically right on top of them before, very, very strangely, I start to see my expensive Yankee item melt.
I have no idea what temperature it takes to melt glass, but right now it's most certainly melting into a glob-ish mess right above the girl's head and I yell out: "HEY!!"
Naturally, not one person pays me a speck of attention even though my vocal cords are crying in pain.
Then, several things happen at once.
First, I see the Abercrombie model's face screwed up in an expression of sick, twisted accomplishment in a devilish grin.
Second, he drops the candle which lands with and ungodly crack on the floor, followed by the shattering of glass particles.
Next, the girl's plaid, tear-stained jumper catches on fire when some of the melted glass lands on the collar of her polo shirt. Oh, holy shit. "NO!" I scream, charging like and enraged rhinoceros towards her, my arms flailing around and making me look like Raggedy Ann, my ugly ass Ugg boots crunching a grotesque mixture of broken glass and scented wax under my feet.
Frankly, I don't care who sees me or what they think, because I'm acting on pure instinct. I seize the little girl underneath the armpits of her flaming jumper and look around frantically for that fountain that I know the mall just spent thousands of dollars on. Like a bat out of hell, I completely and totally book it towards the majestic, concrete angel spewing chlorinated water in a murky pool full of blue-green pennies, no more than twenty feet away. I don't hear and calls of protest and or shouts of "Call 911!" which shocks the snot outta me, but I continue at it anyway, the expression the blonde girl's face showing utter horror at either a) being grabbed by a random stranger or b) being on fire, with her skin and hair now catching. I do say, however, that smell of burning hair closely resembles that of pond sulfur and sounds like small twigs being snapped simultaneously.
Oddly, the Hollister, boob-squeezing, "drunk stitch" t-shirt that I'm wearing is warming very quickly and I can feel it ironing involuntarily to my skin right before I dive (back first seeing as how I have a screaming, bawling five-year old in my arms) into the fountain water.
Never before in my life have I felt anything so cold.
It's now that I have a Final Destination moment and every action that I just performed in the last five minutes come rushing right back into my head with a nice Lost flashback sound effect.
Oh. My. God.
Distantly, I hear Ashley's voice.
"Spit it out, Forrest."
I wrench my eyes open. "Wha...?"
"I said, spit it out, Forrest...Oooh! Look, JT!" Swiftly, she bends down to pick up an orange, glass object off the shiny, tiled ground. It's my Autumn Apple Pie scented Yankee candle that I saw smashed into pieces before my eyes. "Your candle. It almost rolled away there, Scooter."
I merely gape like a fish without water, holding it gingerly with my numb, sweaty fingers. I almost drop it, but I recover by catching it with my cold palms. "It's...it's in one...one piece?" I ask weakly.
"Well yeah," Ashley says, shrugging. "It didn't go that far. Relax."
"The model!" I suddenly yell, finding my voice.
"Mmm, I know. Sexy son of a gun, ain't he?"
"He was..." I point towards...the Verizon guy...? Wait, but the model was just over there! "And there was a fire..." I wave my arms about, causing several people near by to clutch their purchases more closely to their person. "And...and..." Petering off, I realize that I sound so crazy that Ashley's probably debating as to when she should call the men in the white coats.
"What are you talking about?"
"The lady and her kid were--"
I sound retarded.
Looking over to where the scene happened, I see the silly Verizon guy handing out pamphlets to the woman and her daughter that was supposed to be on fire not thirty seconds ago. The Abercrombie model is nowhere in sight, but rather back in his poster. Turning wildly, I semi expect there to be a vague silhouette where his body just was.
Taking a deep breath, I come to terms that I may be committed to an insane asylum if I don't watch out.
"Are you okay?"
"Yeah, yeah." I wave it off. "Fine, Ash. Y'know...PMS..."
"Ah, that sucks."
"Yup. Uh, let's go, huh?" I ask, rolling my candle back into its box, and I gather all of my bags into my arms.
Glancing over my shoulder to make on last confirmation that I was wrong, I see something that makes all of the blood drain right out of my face.
Instead of the regular, piercing dark eyes residing in the sockets of the Abercrombie model, I cannot comprehend how a black and white display can leave room for the man's bright, scarlet, red irises.
Lying on my living room floor, I relish in the new found warmth of the fireplace, the homey grace of the orange flames glancing off the reflective side of my square of wrapping paper. With my tongue sticking out of the corner of my mouth, I concentrate on securing my brother's new, electronic Tonka truck to the best of my Martha Stewart abilities. Feeling quite proud of myself, I rip of another section of tape with a flourish and use a Sharpie to print on the box "FROM: SANTA". At six years old, Sammy has not quite grown out of that Santa Clause/Easter Bunny phase. I give him another year and a half.
I roll over onto my stomach and shove the package under the tree, the first of many to find a new, pine-scented home. About two hours ago, my parents dumped all of the Christmas wrapping on me, seeing as how they cannot bear to up until the wee hours of the morning. For several years, it has become a sort of tradition for my family to sit Sammy in front of a Harry Potter movie until he conks out and then quickly wrap as many of his presents as we can. Normally, a few minutes into the project, my dad complains of the late hour and drags my mother upstairs to do Christ knows what. I've come to accept this.
For Ma's damn Yankee candle, I use one of our re-used bag from my grandmother instead of bothering to wrap the silly thing, for I know that it will be completely useless if I even bother to try. Upon finishing that, I come to a realization that something is desperately wrong.
Very alarmed, I dive across the living room carpet and execute a very nice quarterback slide to my iPod, which lies on the coffee table. Anxiously, I click through my playlists, searching for Perry Como.
Where is he? What is wrapping presents without some Perry Como in the background? I know I put him on here at least a week ago, where could he have gone to?
Grumbling a whole load of unprintable profanities, I slip my iPod into the front pocket of my flannels and meander my way into our kitchen, my mother's Perry Como CD in mind. Being the oddity that she is, she always listens to her CD's in the kitchen while she bakes Sammy's cookies for Santa and I now shove aside the knife block to find it.
Hello, Perry, may I introduce you to Justin Long? I dare say that you can star in the new Apple commercial.
Feeling quite pleased with my snooping abilities, I walk over to our new stainless steel fridge (a gift from Dad's company) for I know that if I don't put out the milk and whatnot, Sammy will just murder me in the morning, claiming that Santa will die of thirst.
The cool Kenmore air hits my flushed face with welcome fervor, my brows perking when I lay eyes on the milk jug.
Yay, we actually have some.
Suddenly, I hear a harsh buzzing of plastic against granite behind me.
"Shit," I swear, surprised by my cell phone lying abandoned on the counter. I turn, leaving the fridge open and assess my messages.
Not surprisingly, I get a text from Ashley, who has still yet to lay off about the whole mall thing. Apparently, she just thinks that it's a riot. Along with her message, I've gotten one from my boyfriend, Bobby.
Grinning happily to myself, I read it, the teenager in me just overjoyed at the thought that my boyfriend texted me at midnight on Christmas Eve to wish me a happy holiday. I then do an over-exited twirl dance in the middle of my kitchen, holding my arms out wide. Of course, I have to bang my knee on the side of the oven/stove/grill combination, letting out a string of curses.
My phone slips right out of my hand, landing with a lovely crash on the parquet floor. I reach out to try to get it, but my iPod fall out of my loose pocket, dangling by the earbuds an inch from the ground before the headphones let go.
"Son of a bitch!" I call out, just loud enough to make the neighbors dogs start barking. Muttering under my breath, I lean down to snatch up my electronics just when the hem of my shirt catches on the knob of the stove.
I sharply inhale. That was Express...
Not any more.
Looking like I just escaped from a meeting held by the dregs of society, I peer over my kitchen counter to only let out a short scream.
Quickly, I duck back behind the counter, my lungs working over time and my phone jammed underneath my thigh.
Oh, Holy Mother of Mary.
He's in my house!
What in the name of God is the Abercrombie model doing in my fucking kitchen?
This is when I start to talking to myself. "Maybe you're imagining things, JT," I whisper gently. "It's really late and he's really hot so—"
"Miss Jennifer Taylor DiCarlo, what are you doing on the ground?"
I am so dreaming.
Meekly, I look up above me to see the gorgeous man himself glimpsing upon my sprawled form. Gathering up my appliances and dignity, I scramble off the floor, shoving my belongings into my pockets.
"You do not exist," I say firmly, more to my own conscience instead off the foreboding figure before me. I find it kind of amusing how I tell him that he is non-existent and a figment of my imagination before telling him to leave.
Quirking a brow, he lifts up the Hood milk bottle. "Oh?" he piques, taking the cap off the container and taking a swift sip.
My draw drops. "Hey!"
"Give me my milk back! That's for Santa, you know!" I blush furiously after reviewing what I just said. Oh, just kill me already. "...Asshole!" I add on for more of a mature angle.
Brazenly, he brings the jug back to his lips and spits the milk back into the bottle. "There." He hands it to me, his motion suggesting that I take it. This I do, slamming it onto the counter, infuriated. Now, it's rather dented.
"Get out of my house!"
"No," he says simply.
I blink. This is going to be difficult. I fumble with my cell phone, flipping it open. "I'll call the police."
He just stares at me, his head cocked at an ignorant angle. I notice how the whole time, his face is completely blank; devoid of any emotion. He hasn't smirked, grinned or showed horror over the fact that I'm calling the authorities.
Of course, his ridiculous red contacts don't add much to the effect at all. Frankly, I think he's crazy and is going to ass rape me before stealing all of my Christmas presents.
Hence my calling the police.
"Are you?" he asks me. I swear that my heart jolts a couple of extra beats when I notice the tone of his voice. It's very similar to that of gravel being shaken about in an empty drywall mud bucket. Exactly. Cold, calculating and unmistakably masculine. I feel goosebumps raise the hair on my arms. I should probably get to shaving that soon.
"GET OUT!" I practically scream, frustrated at seeing my phone's screen as black. I must've jingled something up when I dropped it.
Did he seriously just asks that...?
I bite my bottom lip, my eyes frantically searching for the cordless that my dad always keeps in the kitchen. Seeing it next to the sink, I just above dive under the Abercrombie model's arms to get to it. I wrap my sweaty fingers around the black phone and I jab the call button.
Dead as a doornail.
"Fuck," I say thickly, throwing it down into the dirty mixing bowl in the sink.
"You curse a lot," he responds flatly, his words without any accent what-so-ever.
"You need to leave," I say slowly, turning towards him, my fists clenched.
Like greased lighting, the model's red eyes flash darkly and he clenches his jaw, exhaling sharply through his nose before shoving me right up against the refrigerator.
I didn't even see it coming.
I slam right up against it so hard that I can feel my brain clattering around in my skull when it bangs against the steel door. He clamps his big, meaty hand over my mouth, a staunch scent campfire and burning metal clogging up my senses. Breathing heavily, my eyes bugging out of my head, I push, shove and kick against him, his muscled, GQ'd chest not even close to giving way to my meager trials.
Biting his hand doesn't even work at all. I can feel his blood on my lips but his expression remains calm.
Holy shit, I'm going to die.
Looking into his creepy, red irises, I am going to die by the hand of an Abercrombie model with the nasty, tinny taste of blood in my mouth on Christmas morning.
My screams are muffled and useless against his palm and I can feel stinging tears crawl down my face, his body hard, flat and oh so hot against mine. His breathing is slow and regular, the rising and falling of his chest prone against my stomach, his knee jammed up right between my legs so I can't kick or struggle. I can feel every follicle of stubble on his chin, his cheek pressed harshly against mine, his lips tingling against my ear as he speaks.
I am completely still; his whispered words are like molten fire, melting me from the inside despite their cruelty. "You are going to die," he breathes.
He says it like I don't know this.
I so don't wanna die.
Now is sooo not a good time to snuff it.
What about Stanford? Bobby? My job, my life...
I can't move, I can't think, I can't comprehend my inevitable end. Completely immobile and scared shitless, I just feel the man's stiff body holding me against the cold fridge, his bloody hand clamped around my mouth so I'm breathing irregularly out of my nose.
"Listen to me..." his drawling, honeyed voice says in my ear. My skin prickles at the hash, yet sweet sound of it. This is so weird.
"Mmmpth" is my wonderful, negating response.
Holy Mother that voice...
Hell, maybe this won't be so bad. Y'know, getting raped by an Abercrombie model. I know some girls that would pay to have that done to them.
"Good. Now, listen." I figure that this is my only option. Maybe he'll give me and ultimatum like Jason Bourne. "I am the Devil."
Oh, that's the end of that.
What a crock of bullshit.
The raving, red-eyed lunatic think he's the Devil?
Of all things. I swear.
Shockingly, I find myself letting out a slight laugh against his hand. I hurriedly stifle it upon seeing his still blank expression.
"You want me to prove it to you, JT?" he breathes in that intoxicating, seductive way as he nips my earlobe with his teeth.
"Hmmpt, dypft knmmft mff namfffpt?" How do you know my name?
"I know lots of things."
I swallow. With much difficulty, I may add.
"If you promise to be good, I'll move my hand..."
I find my brows rising. Ooh, move your hand where, exactly? In retaliation, I simply nod. Finally, as if my some grace of God, he removes his hand from my mouth. Sucking in a deep breath of air into my deprived lungs, my face flushes with much welcomed oxygen. "Thank you," I mutter dryly.
"You don't believe me." He says this as more of a statement then question.
"No," I say, finding myself to be chuckling. His body is still noticeably (and rather roughly) pushed against mine.
After a moment, he leans in once more. "Look at your Christmas tree..." he mumbles slowly into my ear. Over his shoulder, I see fire.
Flames, a pure riot of blue, red and orange engulfing my living room, the branches of our decorated, tinseled Christmas tree withering before my eyes. I stare as the fire brushes against the ceiling from the tree in a column of smoke and incendiary pyrotechnics. The presents underneath are quickly reduced to sputtering ashes, the Yankee candle a pool of bubbling wax.
I am completely speechless and my legs go weak right underneath me. However, the Devil's propped knee keeps me form falling to a heap into the ground.
And then they're gone.
It's as if there was no fire, no flames, no anything.
The fire just disappeared, leaving everything as it just was. Suddenly, the tree's lights are back to their twinkling merry selves, the candle wrapped back up in its little foil box. It's like my living room was not in a ball of hot, molten fire at all.
"Fucking bastard!" I cry out, wondering why nobody can hear me. "Fucking son of bitching, no good—"
Sharply, his hand is on top of my mouth again. "I told you to be good." His tone is still flat. Before I can understand what's going on, his voice lowers. ''My name..." he mumbles, leaning towards me, enough as to where I can see his red irises adjusting to the change in light. The scent of burnt charcoal is coming off his skin so strongly that my mind fogs up, dizzily comprehending our close proximity, his lips stiffly forming his next words. "My name is Lucifer."
He's right. He's so right.
"You have one week," he continues, "to show me why you think you deserve to live. One week to prove to me that you belong in this world. One week to convince me like only a select few before you have."
I swallow the bile in my throat as those eyes of his bore into my common, unknowing blue ones.
Brusquely, he steps back from me and I crumple to the ground in an exasperated, confused heap.
"I'll be back tomorrow."
With that, Lucifer is gone, just a wisp of black smoke in my kitchen, the cordless in the sink now gives off a loud, dull busy signal and I can hear my parents trampling down the stairs.
"Jennifer Taylor DiCarlo, what in hell are you doing?"
Nothin', Ma, I think to myself. Just talkin' with the Devil.
A/N: Should I change this to "M"? Oh, and I posted a pic in my profile of what this "Devil" kinda looks like in my mind. Oh, yeah. He is wicked hot. Sorry, sorry for this stupidly long chapter...I just had so much to say and I thought it'd be kind of gay with two entires...it just would not have been the same. None of them will be this long in the future. And that whole bribe thing? You guys can let me know whenever; I just put that out there for you all to chew on. Also, I see seven chapters for this. One for each day of the week, possibly? Lemme know what you guys think.