"Mister, is it much further?" Hannah asked as the car wound down the hidden dales and valleys of the Moor.
Me: I'll admit that I ditched a few times. Okay I did it a lot. It is a bad idea.
She was sixteen, she was missing school, (really, deliberate, not emotional) and she was now wondering whether coming to this place had been such a good idea. But this was Devon, or to be more precise, this was Buckfastleigh, where the village was full of shifty men who drove around with nothing better to do. Like the man whose car she was in, in fact.
Me: Clearly Hannah is stupid.
Luke Bennet was a drug dealer. He used to go to the local school, and he had since taken to coming back, hanging around there to make money by selling his drugs. Luke had sold them all to the boys, and made almost a month's wages, but he hadn't tried the girls yet. And here she was - his first customer, already made. He couldn't believe his luck. Hannah had just been given detention and so she fitted the bill perfectly. She was, also, stunning - her long blonde hair, her amber eyes. Her uniform was all messed up too, her tie was in fact over her arm. He had asked her if she had really liked school and then he had said if she hated it that much (which she did) she could come with him and do as they pleased. He had promised her her first drink or smoke in her life but they had to be away from school when it happened otherwise the teachers would raise Hell.
Me: Ironic much?
Little did they know how much Hell they were actually going to get that day in the church.
Me: Isn't Luke an upstanding fellow?
They were heading to Buckfastleigh church, Luke was, because it was somewhere close and yet not close to Hannah's school. He smiled. Hannah didn't know what she was in for, but she thought it was just a chance to smoke and be like a grown up. No. She was in for much bigger trouble. Soon she would have to hand over all her money - then he would just abandon her in the church yard because it was him who had to deposit that bank deal from Uzbekistan.
Me: Smoking is expensive not to mention smelly.
"Not much further, no," Luke said, looking through his mirror at her. "Do you smoke?"
Hannah scowled at him. It looked funny on a school girl. "Well no not much," she pouted, "but you promised you'd give me the first one."
Me: Isn't she questioning what kind of church this is? No of course not because she's a moron.
"And yes I will," Luke promised, "but when we're at the church - hey, there it is." Buckfastleigh church rose up ahead of them in the distance, but it was a few minutes before they parked.
"Up here, quick," Luke said, escorting the girl out of the car. They made their way up the steep steps, and immediately Hannah felt an unease upon entering the church yard. It was small, enclosed, and felt like an open-air prison.
Hannah looked around nervously but there was nothing to suggest something was not as it should be.
"Alright come on, let's have a smoke," Luke said, coming up right behind her and stealthily putting his hands on her shoulders. She jumped away.
"So, mister, we start right here," Hannah said.
"This is where the Devil comes when he smells a rat," Luke said.
Me: Now you're thinking something is sketchy. You should have thought about how sketchy this thing was before you got into the car.
"What...?" Hannah didn't like the sound of this, she was unnerved as it was.
"Haven't you heard the stories?" Luke asked, his lips curling into a smirk. Hannah shook her head, alarmed. "They say this church is the haunt of the Devil and he comes to live here. If you walk round the church counterclockwise, you will see him looking out at you from the porch. There's a reason things go clockwise."
Me: Oh sure go ahead and smoke. Don't even think about the sketchy guy you're with.
By now Hannah was totally freaked out, but she kept calm. "OK, so what, this church has the Devil in? It doesn't mean I can't get my smoke?" she asked.
"Go girl," Luke handed over the cigarette to her and she inhaled, coughing a lot as the fumes took effect, but she gradually got used to the smell. Luke smiled in relief as it appeared Hannah liked it.
So he could get her money.
But how to? He suddenly had an idea. "Right, Hannah, something tells me you look sweet," he said.
Hannah felt even more alarmed now and she cast nervous glances round, sweating. But that didn't stop Luke. "Hey, what's that!?!" he diverted, and when she looked, he pressed his lips to hers.
Me: What a stupid bitch.
Strangely, Hannah seemed to like it. She didn't refuse, anyway, and together they actually moved backwards, joined at the lips, and when Luke put his hands on Hannah's shoulders, she didn't even complain.
They broke apart.
"You must really hate school then?" Luke asked.
"Yeah," Hannah breathed, and kissed him again. In doing so, they managed to walk round the whole church, kissing, but against the clock.
So, when Hannah looked over to the church porch and saw something unholy, she didn't even seem bothered.
"Mm, what is it?" Luke asked, clasping her shoulders.
Me: Thanks for the helpful tip. When I see something unspeakably demonic I'll know that it is a demon. Anyone else confused? Raise your hand.
Hannah nodded over to the porch, where in the midst, stood something so unspeakably demonic it looked like, well, a demon.
Me: That doesn't seem like a good idea you jackass.
Luke suddenly felt himself scared out of his wits but he let out a sigh. "So this is the dreaded Devil?" he asked. "Well come on mister, what's up?" He walked up to the church porch, Hannah tailing behind, and he slapped the demon round the face.
Me: Kids don't ditch school because you just might end up burning to death. That would be on my list of ways I don't want to die not that I have a list. It is still at the top of that non existent list.
What happened next was horrifying. It let out a gigantic roar, one so enormous that it rippled the air. Hannah and Luke both screamed, terrified beyond reasoning, and they screamed and screamed, clasping each other, and continued screaming when their flesh began to crawl, and melt off them, reducing them to charred skeletons in a second.
Me: Barbara Desmond