This entry is part 12 of 13 in the series (Vexing) Devil's Advocate

378127_10150441621792624_1477312954_n“Here you go. That should be it,” I said to Manaforge Cinder as I handed him a cardboard box the size of my torso. I had managed to fit everything from my office into it.

“This is degrading,” the elemental responded with a hard stare. His voice sounded like gravel being crushed together, and the air around him smelled strongly of brimstone.

“Okay, no problem. Just go into the hallway and tell Lyzolda that she has to carry my stuff out, because you’re just too dignified for this kind of thing.” I crossed my arms and gave him an expectant look. 

He just grunted at me and walked out the door, box in tow. Vexing Devil gave him a shrug as he passed, but he didn’t bother to offer to lend a hand.

“You couldn’t put on some clothes to say goodbye to me? Not even a loincloth?” I smirked at Vexing Devil.

He just shook his head at me, but he smiled while he did it. “You’re absolutely sure about this? I still have the Tooth and Nail case up for grabs.”

I laughed, and even paused for a second to consider it. “Nope, I think I’ll leave that for someone else. There’s always gonna be another case, but someone else can handle it. This is the end of the road for me.”

Smug B@$#@^&. Go put on some pants.

It’s been a blast, but all good things must come to an end.

He nodded at me, then he held his right hand out towards me.

I took it. It was rough and scaly, and felt hot enough to boil water. I gripped it tight anyway.

“So long,” I said solemnly, before cracking a smile and adding, “and thanks for all the fish.”

“One day, I will understand your references,” Vexing Devil smirked back. “It’s been a pleasure.”

He started towards the door, but turned back to add, “… And if I find a particularly troublesome case, do you think I could send it to that new debate you have? The one with Mr. Clauson? Rivals’ Duel, right?”

“Well, I suppose we could consider looking at it,” I said through an ear-to-ear grin.

He nodded knowingly and turned through the door, leaving me alone in my former office. I looked around one last time.

It was much less crowded without my files on the desk or my books on the shelves, but some things were still the same. My wooden writing desk and old, broken-in chair were still there, matching the scratched up hardwood floor. The whole place still looked like a cross between a small office and a large closet, but for the past few months it had been my little corner of the Magic world. I closed my eyes, and inhaled the smell of it one last time. It was the odour you’d get if you set up an antique shop in the middle of a library.

I cleared my throat and bid one final farewell to the (Vexing) Devil’s Advocate offices. Then I spun around and headed out the door.

G-G-G-G-G-G-Goodnight, folks!

G-G-G-G-G-G-Goodnight, folks!

So, now my first column on the site draws to a close. I hope you guys have loved reading it as much as I have loved writing it, but it’s time for me to move on to making some new things. I don’t want to get stagnant creatively, and I don’t want to stretch out a subject and end up giving you guys subpar content, so I’m gonna close the book on (Vexing) Devil’s Advocate while it’s still good.

So what happens next season? You folks have already gotten a taste of Rivals’ Duel, and if you listened to our (sudden and unplanned) pilot episode then you know that I’m still writing on the site. But what can you expect from next season’s column?

Well, you can expect the narrative to continue. I have established a (very cartoonish and exaggerated) caricature of myself for the site, and I look forward to having some fun with him.

But it won’t just be narrative, and you can expect the next column to be split between story and essay about as equally as (Vexing) Devil’s Advocate was.

But what will it about? Well…

“Ready to go, Killer?” Lyzolda greeted me as I walked out of the building. She was leaning against the wall, staring hungrily at Manaforge Cinder, rolling her extravagant ritual knife around her fingers with a well practiced flourish.

Why would the elemental be nervous? This is clearly the face of warmth and comfortable hospitality.

Why would the elemental be nervous? This is clearly the face of warmth and comfortable hospitality.

The cinder, for his part, stared at her (or maybe the knife) warily but stood still, holding my box of office possessions with stoicism.

“In a minute,” I replied, unconcerned. The cinder was safe for now, she wouldn’t sacrifice him unless I let her, and I wouldn’t do that while he was carrying a box that had a bottle of my favourite whiskey at the bottom of it. It would be awfully wasteful if it broke. “We’re just waiting for someone else to get here…”

“She’s already here,” a voice called out from behind us. Lyzolda spun around violently, shooting out and grabbing the cinder by the throat while she did (and he didn’t even drop the box! I need to give this guy a raise.) and readying herself to sacrifice him for a violent burst of magical energy.

I could hardly blame her, she recognized the voice’s owner instantly.

“Hello Jhoira,” I greeted her politely. I turned to Lyzolda and gestured to stand down, “Easy, Heartbreaker. I invited her here.”

What is it about redhead's that always gets me?

A decision I may live to regret.

“Yes you did, which is very odd. Especially considering our… Strained relationship?” Jhoira stated inquisitively.

“Oh, I’m still not gonna cast with you,” I said confidently. “But that stipulation didn’t stop you from hiring me. I’m here to return the favour, as it were.”

“Oh, hire me? I don’t know how good I would be in a debate, Eric. And I would be wasted as a secretary,” Jhoira jabbed with a smile.

“Haven’t you heard? I don’t work here anymore. I’m starting my own firm,” I grinned back. “It’s going to help people with learning tenets they can follow to build stronger and faster EDH decks.”

“So why do we need her?” Lyzolda protested. “I’m the one who who have become a better player with, I’m the one you still fight beside!”

“Yeah, that’s why you’re working with me too,” I stated flatly. “But she was the first one I tried to get better with, and she was there when I learned my first lessons. I may need reminding.”

“You expect me to work with someone who I have consistently had to fight for the last year?” Lyzolda growled angrily.

“Yes.” I said simply, leaving no room for debate.

Jhoira just smirked back at us both. “So you want to use what you learned playing with the ‘evil’ deck to help the little guy? Fine, I’m game. But if you really are starting a new consulting firm, you’re going to need a name.”

I grinned back, causing Jhoira and Lyzolda to exchange their first look that I had ever seen that didn’t contain waves of hostility. Instead, they both looked very, very concerned. They knew what it meant when I got excited.

“Oh, I think I’ve got a name…”

Are you tired of being pushed around by veterans of EDH? Sick of being the one who isn’t a threat at the table? Fed up with people telling you that you need to play Zur in order to compete? Don’t panic. Starting next season, class is in session. Come back to Commandercast.com weekly in order to learn how you can…

Up! Your! Deck!

Oh sweet merciful... Really, Eric!?

Oh sweet merciful… Really, Eric!?

Well, it’s time for Eric to decompressBut in three weeks, you can come back to Commandercast.com to catch him on Rivals’ Duel, Up! Your! Deck!, and Commandercast proper. If you’re not feeling patient, you can always check him out on Twitter @ThatBonvieGuy, or send him an email at EricBonvie@gmail.com.

 

 

 

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