“How dare you say that?” Satan shrieked.
“Look, I think you were interpreting my signals in the wrong way” Ba’al started to explain.
“You say that I was the one who was misinterpreting your signals? You are going to give me that now?” Satan was enraged.
“Yes, of course you were! I was just being nice!” Ba’al shouted.
“Being nice?” Satan could not believe what he was hearing.
“Yes, being nice” Ba’al repeated. “I am a nice person, I tend to be nice to people in general. Isn’t that right, Mary?”
“He actually is” Mary stated.
“Nobody is nice in Hell! If you are nice in Hell, it means you love someone!”
“But remember, Satan, I am not from Hell” Ba’al cut Satan before he started to rant.
This statement had caught Satan off guard. He seemed hurt. “So you were just being fake…”
“No, that’s not it, either. I consider you my friend” Ba’al was exasperated, as if that was the 7 millionth time that he had to explain the same thing.
“Oh, so that’s what I am, then? Just a friend” he spat the last word.
Both Satan and Ba’al remained silent for a whole minute, so Mary decided to take part in the conversation. “So… Now that the misunderstanding has been cleared, are you guys going to go back to Hell, so that we can start the rebuilding of our town?” she asked.
“No. I’m only going to go back with Ba’al” Satan stated, his words calm, but full of fury.
Mary thought about it. “OK, I think I know how we can settle this. Each side gets a kiss with Ba’al, he stays with whichever side wins his heart. What do you think, Satan? Do you like the idea?”
Ba’al turned towards Mary in shock. “What…?”
“I agree” Satan said, confidently, with a twisted smile in his lips.
Merlin intervened. “Mary, can we speak for a minute?”
They both moved a few metres away. Merlin whispered. “Are you crazy? Satan’s kiss can bend any will! We are definitely going to lose Ba’al!”
“I know all of that, that’s why I have proposed it If we beat him in his own game, he will leave us alone for a while”.
“But it’s impossible to beat him!”
“I have a plan. I just need you to…” the rest of it became completely inaudible. Merlin nodded. When Mary finished speaking, the wizard left.
“Where is your friend going?” Satan asked.
“Don’t worry about him” Mary answered. “He will be back soon enough. Anyway, Satan, it’s your call. Kiss Ba’al”.
Ba’al’s eyes were wide open. As Satan approached him, he tried to go back, but Satan held him from the neck with a firm hand. Satan approached with loving eyes, and looked up at Ba’al’s face, which stood about 10 centimetres taller. He licked his lips and pronounced a low “At last”, and then he pulled Ba’al’s face down. When their lips connected, Ba’al’s resistance started to decrease, until it became non-existent. Satan enjoyed the kiss for a long minute.
As the kiss finished, Merlin arrived. Mary looked at Ba’al, who was very obviously out of his own mind, controlled by Satan. Satan licked his lips and faced Mary Clark. “This is not ideal, but he’s mine now. Your call now, Mary”.
“Oh, I am actually not involved with Ba’al romantically” she explained. “And I am also not going to be the one kissing Ba’al from our side”.
Satan seemed confused. “So then, who…?”
“Her” was the only thing that Mary responded.
Diane approached with Merlin, and she advanced towards Ba’al as Merlin stood next to Mary Clark. She pulled Ba’al down softly, and she kissed him in the cheek. “Thank you for always being there, dad” she said.
Ba’al snapped out of it and hugged Diane. “How…? How do you know? I thought I had erased your mother’s memory…”
Satan was puzzled. “How is this even possible?”
“The love for a child cannot be beaten by anything” Mary explained. “Now, as you have promised, please, leave this town” Mary requested.
Satan and his troops disappeared. Merlin looked at Mary, as confused as Satan had been. “But if Ba’al is this child’s father… then this child must be the Antichrist!”
Mary shook her head. “Nothing further from reality. Ba’al was a God that was forgotten by his people. He then joined the ranks of Angels, and Satan took him down in the War in Heaven. But Ba’al has retained his divine being”.
“That’s the reason he could heal! Demons lost the power of healing when they turned away from Heaven!” Merlin understood.
“Yes, that’s it. Then Ba’al got involved with Diane’s mother, and left her pregnant. He is an immortal being, so he did not feel like an adequate candidate to be the father of the child, so he erased the woman’s memories and disappeared from her life. But then this woman somehow found her way through the desert and got here with her baby child. Ba’al has secretly been taking care of her ever since. Of course, Diane knew everything from the very beginning, which was the reason why she allowed him to be around her” Mary completed the explanation.
Merlin nodded. He then brought out a sapphire gem out of his pocket. “With this, my work here is finished. I have assessed Diane’s power and assisted the town when it was in need. If you ever need me again, use this” he handed the gem to Mary.
“Fiery Creek thanks you for your assistance” Mary bowed. “You will always be welcome in this town”.
As he said his goodbyes and left, Merlin felt that those words would remain true forever.