Pair with Demons by Imagine Dragons
“Order, order!” the head demon says. “My colleagues, we have an important agenda to get through so please settle down. House demon do you have an update?”
The house demon scrambles through a cardboard box of bits and bobs in front of him to find something, then gives up and looks around the conference table.
“Uhm, yes,” it says, “I wanted to show you what we have done since the last meeting, but now I can’t find it. Nevermind, we have been working on a constant stream of annoying repairs; we punctured the water heater, we corroded the circuit pump with a follow-up of a burst pipe — that was very successful — and now we are working on a scheme with some old cloth wires that will have to be replaced. We might have to push a little on that one, but I don’t think we’ll have to resort to a full-on electrical fire.”
It goes back to rummaging in its box.
“Okay, thank you,” says the head demon. “Anyone else?”
The weather demon puts up its hand and says:
“Yes, we got inspired by the polar vortex and cranked up the waterworks out here. There has been no real damage from the water, but cabin fever and moodiness are up, and we expect to see some results of that in the coming week.”
“Good!” the head demon says and then raises its monobrow in question to the group, but no one steps up.
“Okay,” it says, “the main reason for calling this meeting is that we have had a request for collaboration from the fears. They have what they call a high diversity/low impact issue over on their side and would like to hear if we can help them out. Emo demon, you can probably say more?”
“Alright, yes,” the emo demon says as it pushes its black bangs away from its red eyes. “I talked to the fears yesterday, and they’re basically running the gamut; fear of abandonment, fear of rejection, fear of change, FOMO, fear of failure, and of success, you name it, they tried it. They even sprinkled in some claustrophobia with house demon’s burst pipe, so that was a nice touch. But they can’t seem to get any traction. Meditation, communication, and lack of attachment to the outcome are at an all-time high, so nothing debilitates the way it used to. That’s why they want to talk to us.”
“Any suggestions?” asks the head demon.
“It almost sounds like they need to level up,” says doctor demon and looks at the emo demon. “have they tried fear of dying?”
“I think only indirectly through fear of missing out,” says the emo demon.
“Yeah, that’s probably not gonna cut it,” says doctor demon. “What kind of access do we have?”
An assistant demon sitting against the wall looks in a file and says:
“Sir, it looks like the whole family is fairly current on their physicals…”
“Hhhmm, then we might have to throw the net a bit wider,” doctor demon says “How about we go through the grandparents? I know we have used that before but it has a high fear score, and we get to do our thing, too.”
“Oh, wait, there is an OB/GYN visit coming up at the end of the month…” the assistant demon says.
“That’s still some time away,” doctor demon says, “but we can use it if we have to. Let’s go with planting something on the grandparents for now?”
“Good idea,” says the head demon. “Can we all agree on that?”
There is a murmur of approval around the table.
“Emo, are you going to talk to the fears?” the head demon asks.
“That’s what I do, man,” the emo demon says, “that’s what I do.”
Regitze Ladekarl has re-emerged as a raconteur after a long, successful career elsewhere. She crafts universal tales from everyday lives with an honest, sharp and witty pen. Besides working on a forthcoming novel, she flexes her voice with personal essays, flash fiction, and method writing here on Medium.