A gunshot rang out and immediately the Cadillac started to swerve and slew alarmingly. With a grating crash it mounted the crash barriers, snapped the bridge rails like matchsticks and plunged fifty feet into the winter swollen river. The driver of the pickup, and his rifle toting passenger, stopped and surveyed the dark tumbling waters. No one struggled from the inverted wreck which was sinking fast. Satisfied, they pulled away. "Where the hell am I? And who the fuck are you?" "You could call me your destiny." Said the figure enigmatically. "What the fuck does that mean? What the fuck is going on?" "I am here to complete an assessment on you." "Fuck You! Now how the fuck do I get out of here?" "You don't." Smiled the figure. "At least until your assessment is complete." "You better let me go man. Or your ass is grass." The finger waggling furiously under his nose did not cause his smile to slip a millimetre. "I feel that I am being somewhat lax in the performance of my duties. So I will explain your situation to you. So if it is alright with you I will continue." He cocked an interrogative eyebrow. The pimp shrugged. Suddenly not looking quite so self confident. "Yeah, OK, whatever." "Thank you. As you can see you are no longer, as you call it, living. In fact you have died, fairly quickly I might add, from a single 7.62mm high velocity bullet to the head. For you information it was delivered from a vengeful ex-boyfriend of one of your, err, stable." The annoying smile remained. "What the fuck? What do you mean dead?. I don't feel dead." "A common reaction, but you are surely dead. Now it is up to me to complete an assessment as to where you go on to from here, in the great celestial journey. His omnipotence has ordered it, the one whom you call God <He consulted his notes> Ah I see that you have professed to being a disbeliever. You now have a chance to modify your views on this subject. I'm sorry I am wandering off the subject, please forgive me." He took the quick hunch of the shoulders as confirmation. "As I was saying we have to complete an assessment. I would like to point out to you that I don't actually sit in judgment on you. The very opposite is true. I am to discuss the areas of concern with you and you will actually make the decision. I do believe that is fair and in this place you will find that we are always fair. Before we begin do you have any questions?" "Do you mean that this is where you decide whether I'm going to hell or not?" The smile broadened. "If you like. In fact the concept of heaven and hell is something that was thought up by humans. We did try, through various prophets and seers, to modify humanities' views but in the end we decided that it was easier to let you believe that than to try and educate you into what really does happen. "If it makes it any easier let me suggest that there are various manifestations of your soul and we are here to agree on what your next manifestation will be. I'm sorry if it seems so complex. There is so much for you to learn and so little time. I will try my very hardest to help you to understand. I hope you find this acceptable?" "Yeah. Just get on with Ok?" Nervous. "Thank you. Now I must explain that your decision making may be assisted by us examining some of the relationships that you had with other humans. I'm sure you understand that this is our greatest concern for it will have a profound effect on what you manifest into during your next phase." "What d'you mean?" "Please indulge me and I will tell you <he glanced at the notes again>. Fine. Now let's see your occupation is described here as a trader in human misery. I believe that is correct." "What the hell does that mean? I didn't trade in no misery mothafucker." "I think you will find our assessment is correct, after all we have been monitoring you since you entered that particular manifestation, as we do for all of our subjects. Let me give you an instance. Do you remember a female-human called Mandy, whom you renamed Pussy?" "Fuck! She's long gone man." "Yes she has. Eight years ago in your years. She died of an overdose of a mind altering substance if you are interested. According to our records she was nineteen years old and was previously at a College studying medicine. You incarcerated her soon after she had had the misfortune to suffer forced sexual intercourse with numerous male humans. "Just at the point where she most needed help and solace from another human you forced her to undergo a further series of deliberate sexual assaults. You denied her her freedom and, through fear and intimidation, you forced her to start selling her body for the gratification of others and the enrichment of your pocket. I can see from your look of wonderment that I am correct." "Err, yeah man. 'Cept you ain't quite got it right, she was a natural hooker man. She just loved to fuck." "I'm afraid you are not correct in that judgment. She was frightened and disgusted up until the day she died. For your interest she was actually a virgin up until the day that she was assaulted and fell into your hands. I really don't think that you really believe that either judging by the number of beatings you administered to her when she <again he consulted his notes> 'got out of line' as you called it. "Incidentally don't feel sorry for her she ended up judging herself as passing from one phase to another and is, as we speak, growing up as the only son of a very wealthy couple. Let us carry on. Now we can discuss Violet. Do you remember her?" "Yeah man. She was my top bitch, she loved me man you ain't got nuthin on me there." "I'm afraid we do. You see she was absolutely terrified of you and was prepared to undertake the most loathsome tasks in order to save her from abuse by you. Our records indicate that she had an unusually low threshold of pain and so she was very suggestible if violence was offered. You forced her to have sexual intercourse with up to fifty male humans per day. "You also, by the sheer weight of the terror in which she beheld in you, forced her to punish the other unfortunate females that strayed into your orbit of influence. She conceived two children, of which you forced her to abort one. I believe that you thought she had been killed too. In fact she was rescued by her brother who, by chance, recognised her on the street and secreted her away in a safe house. She now lives in New Rochester and is married with one child." "I'll get that bitch." Mumbled the pimp. The smile continued, blithely. "I think I must remind you that you are dead and so you have no influence in terrestrial matters at this time. I will continue if I may? Fine. Now we come to the case of Marie-Anne. She had run away from home after a rather pointless argument with her parents. You had met her at the transit authority bus terminus and had sexually tortured her for a number of days before she gave in to your commands and became one of your whores. "I see that she was sixteen when captured and is twenty five now. She has had sexual intercourse, of some description, with thirty nine thousand five hundred and twenty three men and is, as we speak, indulging in a rather unpleasant act for which the male is being charged two hundred dollars." "Good girl." "I rather think we take a different view on that. She will find out about your demise later today and will be forced to join Guiseppe Vincenza's stable later this week." "That sonofabitch. Fuck him." "If it makes you feel any better he will die next year in a knife attack. Marie-Anne will be dead next week, she will be beaten by Guiseppe for trying to escape and will suffer a ruptured spleen. Even after all the ill treatment she will still regard you as a better master than Vino." "There you go you see. Maybe I ain't such a bad guy after all." "As I stated before we will not be sitting in judgment on you. So whether I find you good or bad does not enter into the equation. Shall I continue?" "Yeah. Go for it." He was feeling a little more confident. A confidence that drained from him, drip by drip, as the catalogue of sexual tyranny unfolded. Girls he barely remembered were brought up, discussed and their present whereabouts were revealled. Most of them were in far better positions (One of them was even a male rabbit in New Zealand!) which meant that they had passed through a particularly harsh manifestation. Finally the litany of terror ended. Seventy three girls had worked for him at one time or another. He had earned nearly two million dollars from the enforced use of their bodies. "It looks bad huh?" "As I said before it is not up to me to sit in judgment on you." The smile was becoming annoying now. "So what happens now?" "You choose your next manifestation." "Look. I err...What do you suggest?" "It's not really up to me to make suggestions, however as you asked..." *** Lotitia Scot. Lotty. A small, unhappy looking girl stood shivering on the street corner hoping to hustle a couple of tricks before her man came around. At least she could get into the warmth of a John's car for a few minutes. Her man had decided that she had to wear her miniskirt even though it was ten below and the wind howled through the darkened streets. Suddenly she sensed someone beside her. She turned and was about to ask whether the stranger wanted to party. Then she noticed the smile. Reaching back through her memory she thought she recognised it but, try as she might, she couldn't think from where. It was a smile. No more, no less. No warmth, no heat. A non judgmental smile. "I've just dropped by to see how you are getting on in your role," said the smile. "What the fu....." said Lotty. But he was gone.