"How in God's name am I supposed to get from L.A. to Saskatoon with thirty bucks?"
"Well, I had been planning to let you use one of my cars --"
"Not another hellcar."
Satan shrugged, casually elegant in his plantation-chic. "It would've gotten you there. Or closer."
"Riiiight. But you won't, because you're evil."
"Well, there's that, but you really do need to learn to watch your language, Ezekiel."
"My lang -- oh, I take it back. You're not evil, you're just petty."
"Sulking is highly unbecoming for a member of the Host."
Canada. Thirty dollars. Fuck. "Satan's petty! Do you hear me, world?! Satan! Is! Petty!"
Satan just smirked at the passers-by, most of whom were determinedly looking everywhere but at Zeke.
"You're being invisible again."
"I must admit, I never get tired of watching people blatantly ignoring those in obvious need of assistance."
"Well, that's... in character."
"I do my best, Ezekiel. And I expect you to do the same."
Gone with the usual threat, and really, if anyone had ever told him he'd eventually get used to Satanic threats...
He probably would've backed away. Slowly.
Now that's comedy.
Or, well, his life.
Which didn't improve over the course of the week it took to hitchhike to the border.
Four rides convinced they'd picked up a serial killer, two serial killers left moderately beaten in the care of local police, one day spent being questioned by a frighteningly interested sheriff, three rides from the automobilically suicidal, and the vast majority of Washington passing to the tune of the most cheerily offensive polka ever produced.
Satan had joined them for that ride, singing along and dancing in the backseat while the mildly psychic driver slowly drove himself into a full scale panic attack.
Still, though, he made it across the border with a friendly schoolteacher who'd cheerfully lied to the guards about Zeke being his brother.
And then proceeded to get friendlier in a motel outside of Coquitlam. The fact that he'd kept the radio tuned to the 'oldies' station for the entire drive probably played a major role in Zeke's decision to help the man out.
"The road does strange things to a man's mind, Ezekiel."
Mr. Friendly blinked up at him. "I'm sorry...?"
"No, no, not you."
The long, long drive East was entirely uneventful, and Zeke wondered if Canadians really were better people than Americans. Which was a thought that should've brought Satan to his side, but didn't.
Lasted until he caught up with the latest demon in a shack somewhere in Saskatchewan, smack dab in the middle of cleaning and dressing two... fur trappers.
Dale Charbonneau had been one of Canada's first and most radical animal rights activists, with a love of irony Zeke could appreciate.
Managed to shoot out one of the guy's eyes before he was seen, and after that it was just a matter of slipping around in blood and... other things, some wrestling, and one firm poke.
Sardonic applause and Zeke made a rude gesture in its general direction.
Satan clapped him on the shoulder. "There's my boy." Took a deep breath. "I love the smell of carnage in the morning, don't you?"
"Tch. Well, you will before you're done. Good enough for me." Satan slipped his arm through Zeke's, a gentleman with his lady on the promenade.
Zeke rolled his eyes. "So what's next, boss?"
"Same thing we do every night, Zekey --"
"You hate me, don't you?"
Satan... snuggled. "You just keep on believing that."