the loophole

She held the surrogate’s hand, she was a pretty young woman willing to carry a child that was not her own, her husband held hers. They were in the delivery room waiting for their little bundle of joy to come into the world.

The doctor coaxed the little one into the world, and handed him to his mother.

They arrived. The witches, there were three of them, standing looking confused about why the others were there.

The mother clutched the baby closer as she recognized one as Ssamdol, the witch she had promised  first born child for the gift of song.

The father recognized one as Fasd, the witch he had promised his first born child to for love.

The surrogate laying exhausted on the bed recognized the last one as Hajilkem, the witch she promised her first born child to her to survive a car accident.

The three witches looked at each other and in unintentional unison, “I’m here for the baby.”

“Who’s baby is it?” Ssamodol asked, her claw of a finger outstretched toward the child.

“Well, its ours.” The two parents said. “But we didn’t give birth to it.”

“So its your first born child?” Hajilkem planed her lender hands on her leather clad hips.

“Sorta, but biologically its not mine.” The surrogate said sleepily.

The witches looked between themselves. Fasd sighed, “Where does that leave us?”

“We should have written down what we did last time this happened.” Ssamodol rubbed her nose. “We alternated, I don’t remember the schedule.”

“The last schedule sucked, having to fly it back and fourth every week was exhausting.” Hajilkem tossed her blonde hair over her shoulder. “What if we did months this time?”

“How do we do holidays?” ¬†Ssamoldol shook her head.

“We usually celebrate together.”

Fasd nodded in agreement. “These mortals thinking they can get out of promises with more promises.”

“Who gets him first?”Ssamodol reached out her arms for the baby, plucking it out of it’s mothers arms.

“Who gets him last?” Fasd suggested. “You take him for now, I’ll fetch him next month.”

They disappeared in a cloud of smoke leaving the parents befuddled.

 

 

The Devil Walks Among You

The two women run on the treadmills next to me. Religion is their main topic, I struggle to focus on my own workout.

“He’s going to send all those perverts to jail.” The most talkative one nearly shouts over the noise of the machines. “He’s going to overturn roe v wade, and bring this country back to its Christian foundation. What this country was founded on, religion.”

I could practically hear my eyes roll. How ignorant could they be, I turn up my machine, my own breathing drowning them out until I can’t run.

“That’s what the evil one wants.” followed by how wonderful and compassionate her preacher is, and something about the pope, and praying for those who sin, sex before marriage kind of thing and something about fake news. “Their lives will catch up to them.”

I reign in every comment I want to spit at her. I shut off my machine and march across the gym to continue my workout. The TVs across the gym are all tuned to the same station, telling us that our president will not be keeping any of the promises that got him elected, and directly contradicts most of the women’s conversation. I wonder how there got to be so much hate in their religion, in their beliefs, and how it was my fault people were so terrible to each other. They’re doing it for God, not for me. Confounded I go home, to eat snacks and watch Netflix.