By Resident Afterlife Solutions Expert Dante Cypher

Recent revelations concerning a sudden spike in handcart sales has been met with almost universal condemnation. Word has got out that the non-physical realm, Hell, has recently invested heavily in renovations and restorations, which in turn has seen the place for the eternally damned being a more desirable place to end up. Calls have been made for hard hitting newspaper columnists to wade in on the debate – after all, a lot of them like to use the “Hell in a handcart” phrase to make a point where they see a part of society getting increasingly worse. But it seems that even these media types are rallying together with everyone else on the controversial clean up of Hell’s image. I interviewed a denizen of Hell, the demon Asmodeus Askwith who’s speaking on behalf of Satan, as he wants to set things straight on this whole situation. We resolved to meet in Purgatory, about mid way between Earth and Hell, more or less.

TDJJ: “Since this news hit Earth, there was a lot of initial confusion as to why such a place like Hell, with the kind of people who dwell there, needs any kind of makeover. Can you explain why the renovations took place?”

AA: “You’ve got to understand, no matter what belief system you may follow, everyone knows that the place is very old. We had a lot of leaking issues and rising damp in some of the rooms, and this was affecting the heating. After all, we’re famous for our firey interior. Satan finally decided to do something about it, he was getting sick of the dripping noises he could hear coming from his bathroom. So, yeah, that’s the main reason. Plus, he felt that the place could do with a new lick of paint.”

TDJJ: “Is there any truth in the news that more vending machines were installed in the communal areas? This point has really got a lot of people’s back up, if it’s true.”

AA: “I know, I read some of the outspoken views in the British press. So hostile. Yes, we did get some more, but we got a good deal with them. We’d actually make a profit with them after five years, even if we keep the prices of the cans of pop the same.”

TDJJ: “What do you say to the claims that Hell now sounds more like a holiday camp?”

AA: “It’s a bit unfair. Listen, we’re still going to punish the despicable dicks, malevolent maniacs and right bastards in the same way as before, we’re not going soft. And we’re still on the lookout for more of these absolutely atrocious arseholes coming through to our realm, our punishment policy hasn’t altered. Plus, the security is as tight as ever, we’ll still discipline those who try and make a break for Limbo in the same way.”

TDJJ: “And what about the rumours about having an underhand interest in the increase of handcart sales?”

AA: “We’ve been made aware of the phrase that posits the need for a handcart in order to enter Hell. It’s a bit more complicated than that. To be honest, the handcart is neither here nor there. We have nothing to do with these sales, but I’m sure the manufacturers are rubbing their hands with glee, it seems they can name their price.”

TDJJ: “But there’s a lot of people now wanting to visit the place, and they see committing heinous crimes being the way forward when they die. Does Satan feel any responsibility about a possible future where Earth becomes a breeding ground for evil?”

AA: “As I mentioned earlier, their eternal suffering is still going to be the plan when people end up here. All we’ve done is spruce up the place a bit. By the sounds of it, there’s too many people on Earth believing every ignorant, uninformed word they read. They’ll realise after just two minutes of getting their innards sawn in half that we mean business.”

TDJJ: “Finally, you say that your torture methods will remain unchanged, but is there any change in the criteria for getting here?”

AA: “No, not really, it’s still the same old sins. Though we’ll still decide on a case by case basis whenever it feels necessary. Basically, if you don’t want to end up getting your eyelids and nails bitten off slowly by cacodemons, or don’t fancy the idea of being continuously subjected to Les Dawson style piano playing, stay out of trouble!”

Published by The Daily Jabjab

Hi, I'm from Stockport, Greater Manchester England. My plan on my blog is to hone my creative writing and write a post every day this year. It sounds daunting, and I'm sure things will evolve over time. Let me know what you think about my writing - any tips, useful websites and things like that would be quite lovely. Thanks for reading!


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