issue 5

An Open Letter to Bezoath, Lord of Darkness and Shareholder Value, by Brent Baldwin

Dear Lord Bezoath,

I know it is a busy time for everyone with the ongoing global pandemic and the collapse of two major democracies, but I have come down ill and need to take off this weekend. I have entered the hours into the system, but it is saying I need approval from a senior manager or above.

Yours Faithfully,

Djinni Mortimus Rougetail XLIV

Punishment Analyst II, Seventh Circle, Hell


DJINNI MORTIMUS,

YOUR REQUEST FOR TIME OFF IS DENIED. BE AT YOUR STATION OR FIND A NEW JOB. (GOOD LUCK IN THIS MARKET.)

ADDITIONALLY, YOU ARE REQUIRED TO COVER THIRD SHIFT ON SUNDAY.

LORD BEZOATH


Dear Lord Bezoath,

I have received your communication, and I have photocopied it and provided details to the Legions’ Infernal Resources representative.

Yours Faithfully,

Djinni Mortimus Rougetail XLIV

Punishment Analyst II, Seventh Circle, Hell


COWARD MORTIMUS,

WHERE ARE YOU? I CAME TO YOUR STATION, BUT THE DEMONS ON SHIFT REPORTED YOU WERE IN THE TOILET. I WAITED FORTY-FIVE MINUTES. I HAVE CONCLUDED THEY WERE COVERING FOR YOUR ABSENCE.

I AM DISPLEASED.

LORD BEZOATH


Dear Lord Bezoath,

For too long the seventh circle staff have been treated as second-class citizens within the bowels of hell. We face long hours, excessive heat, and poor job security. The Legions of Hell, including members of all nine circles, have appointed me—Djinni Mortimus—as representative of the Legion’s Workers’ Committee to the Labor Relations Board.

These are our demands:

• Shifts posted at least seven days in advance

• Access to the profit sharing and equity programs for employees with at least three centuries’ tenure

• Cost of living and inflation updates of per diems for involuntary summoning

• Equal time off and holidays for all demons, devils, and djinn serving within the nine circles

Please find attached a list of job codes, levels, and compensation bands taken from two comparable organizations: the United States Civil Service General Schedule and the Byzantine Empire Administrative Offices & Remuneration scrolls.

Yours Faithfully,

Djinni Mortimus Rougetail XLIV

Punishment Analyst II, Seventh Circle, Hell


COWARD MORTIMUS & CONSPIRATORS,

COMMITTEE? THERE WILL BE NO COMMITTEE! YOUR LABOR RELATIONS BOARD HAS NO JURISDICTION HERE. YOU WILL ALL COWER BEFORE ME! DEVILS, DEMONS, AND DJINN IN THIS AGE ARE LAZY ANGELFEATHERS, UNFIT TO POLISH THE BOOTS OF THE LORDS OF DARKNESS. YOU WILL REPORT TO WORK WHEN SCHEDULED, OR YOU WILL BE MADE TO SUFFER A FATE WORSE THAN FORCED SINGING OF THE COMPLETE SOUTHERN BAPTIST HYMNAL. GROVEL, WORMS, OR FACE ETERNAL RUINATION.

LORD BEZOATH


Job Listing: Punishment Analyst II

Location: Seventh Circle, Third Ring

The Punishment Analyst II will work with other devils, demons, and djinn to research and evaluate appropriate forms of punishment for offenders who have sinned against God, Art, and/or Nature. Join our team of dedicated analysts and engineers working with blasphemers, usurers, and all deviants in between.

This is an onsite position.


Termination Notice

Dear Djinni Rougetail,

This is a formal notice that your employment on the seventh circle is terminated immediately, with cause. Your supervisor has presented memos documenting three incidents of unexcused absences and two incidents of verbal abuse to infernal colleagues. Your access to Nine Levels, Inc. is revoked. All personal belongings will be delivered via tracked courier.

Good Day,

Infernal Resources


Dear Lord Bezoath,

It has come to my attention that you have tried to fire multiple members of the Legion Workers’ Committee, including myself. While Infernal Resources has not been receptive of our petition, you will find enclosed a copy of our legal counsel’s letter as well as a temporary restraining order.

I wish you good day,

Djinni Mortimus Rougetail XLIV

Punishment Analyst II, Seventh Circle, Hell


Lou,

No, I have not spoken to the media, though it took all of my power not to rain brimstone upon the devil who tried to film me leaving my home.

I have tried to meet with the chief organizer, but he has not returned my calls. I’ll follow-up again in person this afternoon. Please rest assured that everything is under control here, and there will be no impact on third quarter offerings.

Respectfully,

Bezoath

Vice President of Darkness and Shareholder Value


DEAR MORTIMUS,

IF YOU FELT I CAUSED YOU DISTRESS, THEN I DEEPLY REGRET IT. THAT WAS NOT MY INTENTION. I WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK TO YOU PRIVATELY AT YOUR CONVENIENCE.

SINCERELY,

LORD BEZOATH


Dear Comrades,

Schedules will now be posted on the first and fifteenth of the month, and a new management code of conduct can be found on the Infernal Resources SharePoint. Details on the equity package are forthcoming. We still have miles to go before we sleep, but the path is clear before us.

Yours Faithfully,

Djinni Mortimus Rougetail XLIV

Senior Punishment Analyst, Seventh Circle, Hell


Job Listing: Vice President, Darkness & Shareholder Value

Location: Seventh Circle

A Vice President, Darkness & Shareholder Value, manages the day-to-day activities and deliverables, including schedules, financials, and project change requests. A qualified candidate will have fifteen centuries of experience in demon management, punishment design, and cost analysis.

Experience managing within a unionized workplace a plus.


Originally from the tree-swept hills of the Missouri Ozarks, Brent Baldwin lives in London with his wife, two daughters, and terrifying guard cat. If you find him without his hands on a keyboard or his nose in a book, it will probably be in the kitchen.

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