By Penelope Downs, AKA Doc

Disclaimer: This is continuation of the story Getting the Devil into Heaven, which is humorous spin-off from a tale in The Decameron. I hadn't planned on doing a sequel, but I received e-mail messages asking me to continue the story so I decided to give it a shot. The characters in this story are mine and I own the copyright. Use without my permission is prohibited. Any resemblance to a person, dead or alive, is unintentional. If you under 18 years of age, are offended by same sex romances, or it's illegal to read about it where you live, stop now and read no further.

The she-devil kept a firm hold on Mach's shoulder, dragging him with her to search for Bel. She wanted the morale support. Besides, although she could be persuasive when she needed to be, Mach was a natural orator and she figured it couldn't hurt to have him come along, just in case. Finding Bel wasn't easy; the she-devil and Mach looked for him in all the public places they had visited the previous day to no avail. They ran into a few of their fellow devils, but they mainly encountered the beautiful local residents.

As the she-devil's grip on his shoulder became painful, Mach realized that Vi was getting angry. He was frustrated since they had spent the better part of the morning on the unsuccessful search for their boss, but the she-devil was more than frustrated. Mach began to hope that they wouldn't find Bel. The last thing he or Vi needed was an angry encounter with the boss. Knowing Vi, he was afraid that a shouting match would degenerate into a bloody fight and that they'd both find themselves stuck in the worst assignment in Hell. In the basement, so to speak, playing gofers to the most despised devil in the underworld, Jude.

'I've got to do something to get her to calm down,' Mach thought to himself. He noticed that they had made a full-circle around Heaven and were approaching the dining tent again. 'Well, it couldn't hurt to get something to eat. Maybe it would actually make her feel better.' Mach cleared his throat. "Vi, I'm hungry and I know you must be, too. It wouldn't hurt if we stopped for ten minutes to get a bite to eat. Who knows, maybe we'll actually run into someone who can tell us where Bel is. Besides, I'm afraid that if we find Bel while you're in such a foul mood that not only will we not get to stay here, we might end up working for Jude " The she-devil looked at her friend. He had a sincere look on his face. (That was rare for devils.) She decided that he was right. She was frustrated and tired; she hadn't gotten any sleep the night before, she hadn't wanted to waste her time sleeping. In such a state, she knew she would be less than likely to persuade Bel to do anything. "Okay, you're right. Let's stop."

Mach was surprised that his friend was so quick to agree with him but he didn't intend on looking a gift horse in the mouth. He led Vi into the tent. They agreed to meet at one of the dining tables after each had gotten a plate of food. Vi headed back toward the table that bore foods that she was familiar with and loved. While she was stopped before the figs, which she was taking several handfuls of, she felt someone come close and lean in toward her. Then she heard a familiar voice whisper her name. "Vi, love." The little angel said. "I've missed you. Let's go back to the lake to eat breakfast and get better acquainted." The devil turned to look at the petite blonde. She smiled at her, thinking about the beautiful, curvaceous body that was under the long white robe. Although the idea of getting to "know" her little angel better was very tempting, Vi fought back the urge to follow her to the lake and make unbridled love to her for the remainder of the day. She wanted more than one day and two nights of passion with this golden creature.

The she-devil put her arm around the angel's shoulder and pulled her closer so that she could speak to her without being overheard. "There's nothing more that I'd like to do than make love to you. I'm going to make love to you again. I promise. However, I can't just now. I've got to meet with my friend Mach. We've got some important business to discuss devil-to-devil."

The she-devil quickly glanced around to determine whether any of her fellow devils were nearby. When she was assured that they weren't she winked and then smiled at the angel. She also made good use of her tail, mischievously poking the little angel in her very attractive rear. The blonde looked around to try and figure out who had pinched her. She hadn't suspected Vi since the devil's hands were full, one holding a plate the other holding her. When the angel saw the she-devil's tail in her peripheral vision, she feigned anger. (That was an emotion that angels rarely experienced.) She quirked an eyebrow, frowned and poked the devil in the stomach.

"Just for that I'm not going to leave you alone. I'll join you and your friend as soon as I get some food."

'Damn, that's the last thing I want right now," the she-devil thought. She didn't think that it was a good idea for the angel to know too much about her plan to persuade Bel to leave her and Mach behind. In Hell rumors spread like, well, wild fire. The devil suspected that the same was probably true in Heaven, even if there weren't fires everywhere, literally. The last thing she wanted was for Bel to get wind of her plan before she spoke to him. However, she didn't want to hurt her love's feelings either. She pondered various ways to try to thoughtfully discourage the angel from joining them. (It was extremely difficult, almost painful, for devils to be thoughtful. That simply wasn't their nature.) Finally, she decided on a course of action that came naturally to her as a devil--lying. She said in a soft voice that was almost a whisper, "Love, Mach and I really need to discuss sensitive business matters. You know, trade secrets kind of stuff. Our boss would have our skins if I let you sit in on our meeting. You don't want to get me into trouble do you?"

The she-devil attempted to make what she hoped was a pathetic face. As a devil she had had more experience making frightful faces. She wasn't quite sure how a pathetic face was supposed to look, but she improvised and hoped that it would work. Apparently it did. The angel sighed and acquiesced, saying, "Alright, I'll let you have your silly meeting, but I'm holding you to your promise. I expect to see you later." Not caring who was watching, the angel grabbed the back of the devil's neck, pulled her head down and kissed her. Not a chaste kiss like those bestowed by her fellow angels, but an open-mouthed, tongue-probing, carnal kind of kiss like those that the she-devil had bestowed on her during their nocturnal liaison. The little angel also discreetly moved her free hand under the devil's short skirt and gently placed three fingers into the devil's secret pocket to gauge the effect of the searing kiss. When she was satisfied that the she-devil was beginning to "appreciate" her newly acquired oral skills, she broke off the kiss. Still holding Vi's head down, she whispered into her ear. "We'll continue this later." Then she turned and left.

The she-devil was so stunned by the angel's boldness that she hadn't noticed Mach standing watching them. When she finally began to get her bearings again she saw him. Although they were friends, she expected him to tease her mercilessly about her aggressive little angel. (Devils couldn't resist teasing each other. Teasing ranked second, behind pulling practical jokes, on the list of favorite activities in Hell.) He surprised her when he simply put his arm around her shoulder to lead her to a table.

Mach remained silent for several minutes after they had seated themselves at a table. When he finally spoke, he said. "Vi, you and I are lucky. We're devils condemned to spend eternity in Hell. Love isn't supposed to be in the cards for us, but we've both found it here. Like you, I'd like to stay longer. I don't relish the idea of returning to Hell tomorrow, but if we aren't successful in convincing Bel to leave us behind we'll have our memories." Realizing that he was being far too sensitive for a devil, Mach decided he'd better throw in some levity. "Who knows, if push comes to shove, maybe our friends here would be able to convince their management to send a delegation to Hell."

Vi chuckled at his last comment. She could almost see her little angel pestering her superiors until she got her way and a trip to Hell. Mach watched his friend and almost swore that tears were welling up in her eyes. He didn't want to embarrass her further and cast his eyes downward, eating his meal in silence so his friend could regain her composure. The she-devil quickly suppressed her emotions. (Devils weren't supposed to cry or display sensitive feelings. Management wouldn't tolerate such behavior. It would have ruined the establishment's reputation. They had an image to maintain.) She cleared her throat to get Mach's attention. When he looked at her she scowled at him playfully and asked. "Have you come up with any ideas for finding our elusive leader?"

Mach returned the she-devil's playful scowl. Chuckling, he said. "Yes, I happened to overhear a conversation between two of the catering staff who were standing near the food table I went to. It seems that Bel is holed up with the one of the big uppity ups here in Heaven, an angel named Michael. Apparently, the catering staff is amazed that the only thing Bel wants is his usual fare--gruel. They're quite disappointed that he's not willing to try some the their more famous delicacies."

Vi shook her head; it didn't surprise her that Bel refused to pamper himself. He always had to be the most devilish of devils, feeling that he had to lead by example. She asked Mach another question. "You didn't happen to overhear where they're holed up, did you?"

Mach leaned across the table, quirked his eyebrows and said, "Yes, it's close by."

"Well, what are we waiting for. Let's go." The she-devil responded, preparing to stand. She was surprised when Mach grabbed her shoulder.

He looked her in the eyes and said. "First, let's finish eating. We need to discuss our strategy. I want to be prepared when we meet Bel. We'll only have one shot at this, you know."

The she-devil sighed. She had to admit that Mach was right. They needed to discuss their strategy. Bel would only give them one opportunity to convince him. If they argument wasn't persuasive enough, they wouldn't be allowed to bring the matter up again. Picking up one of the figs from her plate, Vi leaned across the table so she could speak to Mach in a low voice that wouldn't be overheard.

Everyone who came into the dining tent noticed the two devils who were involved in such an intense and private conversation. No one dared approach them. Although they spoke in low tones that couldn't be overheard, it was clear that their discussion was very animated; their tails gesticulated wildly at times. (When they got excited, devils often couldn't control their tails. The pesky things would take on their own life.) After an intense discussion that lasted three quarters of an hour, Vi and Mach left the food tent in agreement on the case they would make to Bel. Their next obstacle was gaining entry into the mansion that Bel was at. As they approached it they saw many large angels walking around the perimeter of the prominent home. As the two devils approached, they were confronted by three of the angels, none of whom looked very friendly.

The largest of the three angels said. "You might as well turn around now. You may not enter these grounds."

Mach quickly stepped forward, figuring that he should handle the angels. Vi would only get into a fight. He looked at the angel intently and said. "We have a very important matter to discuss with our leader. We know he is meeting with your boss. We hate to interrupt them, but it vital that we speak to our leader now."

The large angel didn't change his expression. He simply crossed his arms and replied. "Your boss said he wasn't to be disturbed unless the messenger knew the secret password."

Mach tried not to show his frustration. He thought to himself, 'It figures that Bel would do something like this. I have no idea what the damned secret password is. I wonder if Vi would be able to guess what word Bel might have chosen.' He looked toward Vi as he said to the angel, "My friend can give you the secret password."

The she-devil was caught off guard. She hadn't expected Mach to turn to her for assistance. She hemmed and hawed for a few seconds while she tried to make an informed guess about the password that Bel might have chosen to use. Before she could speak she heard a female voice coming from behind the three angels. She was relieved when she realized who it was.

"Boys, I can vouch for these two. They gave me the secret password when I met them in the dining tent. I've already given them permission to enter." The little angel said. She stepped around the three larger angels and said to Mach and Vi, "Follow me." Not giving the three other angels a chance to argue she grabbed the two devils' hands and pulled them along.

Once they had gotten past the three large guards, the little angel pulled Vi and Mach aside into an isolated area in one of the gardens. She dropped their hands, put her hands on her hips and stared at the she-devil while she spoke. "Just what are you doing? And don't try to give me the run-around about it being sensitive devil business."

Vi cast her eyes down. She had some questions of her own for her love, but she was too embarrassed to ask them. She felt like an apprentice devil who had been caught botching up her first assignment. She didn't quite know what to say to the little blonde. Fortunately, she didn't have to. Mach stepped forward, even though the angel was staring intently at Vi, and spoke quietly, telling the little angel everything.

"Well," the little angel replied after Mach had finished speaking. "Why didn't you tell me this earlier, Vi? I might just be in a position to help, you know. I happen to be one of Michael's administrative assistants. I helped prepare for this summit and know the all the topics on the agenda. The major theme for both camps is improving communications. Sounds like your plan would qualify as a possible option. I think Michael would be willing to give it serious consideration. I'd make your argument to your boss in his presence. They're old friends, you know. If Michael sides with you, it might help."

Vi and Mach looked at each other. Neither could imagine that an angel would be a friend of Bel's, let alone the head angel. The little blonde suspected that they didn't believe her so she continued. "You don't know much about your boss, do you? For example, I bet you didn't know that he used to be an angel a very long time ago. He got into big trouble with the head honcho and was 'expelled,' so to say."

That bit of news really threw Vi and Mach. Bel couldn't have been an angel. There wasn't a nice bone in his body. He was one hundred percent devil. They were certain.

Confronted with silence, the angel started to speak again. "Alright, follow me. I'll prove it to you." The little angel led the two devils to another garden. She didn't speak but signaled for them to hide behind some large scrubs. As soon as they had taken their places, as if on cue, Bel emerged from the building followed by a very large and handsome angel. Vi and Mach couldn't believe their ears when they heard Bel laughing and cracking jokes with the angel. He had never even smiled in their presence. Bel even used an abbreviated version of the head angel's name and called him Mike. A name that no one else in Heaven had dared use.

Vi and Mach were listening to Bel's and Michael's conversation so intently that they were caught off guard when the little blonde angel pushed them forward out from their hiding places. She stepped out too and began speaking first.

"I'm sorry for being so bold, I must apologize to both of you. However, I thought you both had to hear the most scathingly brilliant idea that I overheard these two devils discussing. I think they may have hit upon a solution to our communications problem."

The little angel stepped back and waited for the two devils to carry on. Vi and Mach looked at each other then Vi stepped forward and spoke.

"Well, sir . . .[The she-devil didn't dare get too familiar with Bel in the senior angel's presence. She didn't want him to think that Bel was soft on his subordinates. It would ruin his reputation.] . . .Mach and I thought that communications between Heaven and Hell might improve if a small, permanent delegation was assigned to each establishment." The she-devil decided not to expand upon her explanation and waited for Bel or the head angel to ask questions.

Bel was the first to speak. "And do you have any particular devils in mind whom you think would be qualified for such an assignment if we were to agree to this proposal?"

Mach stepped forward and, unflinching, responded. "Yes, sir. Vi and I believe that we're qualified to serve in such a capacity." Mach held his breath, half-expecting Bel to get up from his chair to strike him down. He was pleasantly surprised when he didn't. It didn't hurt that Michael had chosen to speak up once Mach had finished speaking.

"Bel," the senior angel said. "I sort of like this proposal, and I think that these two would be qualified to serve as your first quasi-permanent delegates. They had the courage to broach the topic with us directly and I don't think they'd flinch and shirk their duties if I asked them to carry a message back to you that they knew might make you angry."

Bel unconsciously reached up and scratched one of his horns. Something he did when he was deep in thought. He finally responded to Michael. "Mike, these are two of my more experienced devils. I'm not so certain that I'd be able to spare them. Their presence is sorely needed in Hell."

The head angel knew what his old friend was hinting at but couldn't come straight out and ask for. He knew that Bel secretly enjoyed the opportunity to visit his old stomping grounds occasionally, even though he was supposed to be competing against them. If the truth be told, the angel enjoyed talking to his old friend in a relaxed environment where they could let their hair down, so to speak, and relive some of the good times they had had before Bel got expelled from Heaven. He answered his old friend.

"Well, if we agree to this, I would expect to hold an annual summit meeting with you to ensure that the arrangement is working. What do you think."

Since his subordinates were present, Bel resisted the urge to smile at his old friend. Instead, he held out his hand and said. "I think that would be essential. Why don't we shake on this."

Michael took his old friend's hand and shaking it said. "Deal."

Bel waived his hand at the two devils to dismiss them. Vi and Mach almost ran; they were anxious to get away from him. They had never seen Bel agree to anything so quickly and wondered if he would change his mind. They didn't stop running 'til they were back near the dining tent. When they stopped, they noticed that the little angel was tagging along, behind them. She came up to Vi, stood on tiptoe and kissed the she-devil. Vi embraced the angel and deepened the kiss, only stopping when Mach cleared his throat.

"I'm going to go look for my friend. I'll see you two later." He said.

"Sure," was all that Vi said, never taking her hands off the little angel.

Once Mach had departed, Vi kissed the little angel again, deeply. The blonde smiled as she felt something stir beneath Vi's skirt. Breaking the kiss, Vi leaned in and whispered into her ear. "Let's go back to our spot. I have a promise to keep."


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