"How long has it been?", asked Jonathan while petting Sock's hair as they were cuddled together on the couch, watching some trash tv.
"About two years I think."
Sock hated to admit it but his human counter part had grown to him quite a bit and Jonathan actually started to enjoy the demon's presence instead of being alone so he hadn't protested when sock started the habit of cuddling up against him every now and then.
"How long do you still have?"
Sock turned his head a bit to look up at the other teen with a confused expression and asked:
"What do you mean?"
"I mean like... your boss surely doesn't want to wait like 50 years for you to make me kill myself...."
Sock didn't like talking about that topic. He wasn't sure anymore if he actually wanted Jonathan to kill himself so keeping quiet he nuzzled his face into Jonathan's chest.
Eventually, he answered:
"No timelimit....Mephi doesn't even understand the concept of time...."
"So technically I could live a more or less normal life and have a family and all and I just have to kill myself in the end?"
"Y-you don't HAVE to kill yourself. It's just that if you don't do it I'll get fired and have to suffer and burn in the fires of hell for all eternity."
The dead teen didn't actually know what would happen to him if he got fired.
"That's what I meant, sock. You're like..." he stopped and sighed. "You're like a friend to me...my only friend...and I don't want you to have to suffer like that if I can prevent it."
Sock felt his cheeks grow hot and he wanted to answer 'you're my only friend, too.' but he didn't. Instead, he desperately tried to find something else to talk about instead of the uncomfortable topic of suicide.
The moment the words left his mouth and he felt Jonathan tensing up, he knew he should have picked a different topic.
"So how's your mother doing?"
When Jonathan's mother had been brought to the hospital the demon had decided to do something else while his friend was visiting her. He was supposed to pester his human counterpart but family wasn't something he wanted to intrude in on so he always had to ask how she was doing.
The blonde teen drew a shaky breath before slowly answering, his voice shaking badly:
"I-it has been nearly a y-year now a-and...the doctors d-don't think she'll ever w-wake up again."
Sock felt bad for bringing it up. Really bad.
After taking a few deep breaths Jonathan had calmed down again.
A long silence followed.
"...tomorrow's your birthday right?"
"Y-yeah..." sock replied hiding his flushed face in the other teen's gray hoodie. Jonathan had remembered his birthday even though he only mentioned it like 2 times since they first met. Did that mean he actually cared about him?
Jonathan had stopped petting the smaller male's copper hair and was now playing with it, gently massaging his scalp every now and then, making the demon blush an even darker shade of red.
"You should ask your boss to give you the day off. You deserve it."
Jonathan cut him off.
"Please sock... you look like death-"
"Well I AM dead, you know."
"You know what I mean!" The blonde sighed.
"I do enjoy having you around, sock, but I think we both could use a one day break."
Defeated the little demon mumbled: "okay...but I'm gonna visit you in the afternoon." and then just fell asleep.
~ ~ ~
The next morning sock woke up in his place in hell. As jonathan had requested he had asked his boss to get the day off and he had actually said yes.
Something was off.
From the moment he woke up he had the feeling that something was wrong.
He brushed it off as just worry about his human and decided to walk around a bit to get his mind off things.
To his surprise he ran into mephistopheles only a few minutes after starting his walk.
"Hey sowachowski! Good to see you. I wanted to congratulate you aaaaand" he reached into his pocket and pulled out a plain white card.
"Someone wants me to give you this."
With that he handed sock the card.
The small demon took it and opened it.
Inside stood just three words.
"Happy birthday, Sock."
It wasn't signed.
"...who?" He looked up at his boss again "I have to thank them."
The ginger just nodded towards a door further down the hall and then disappeared.
Sock approached the door and entered without looking what it's sign said and without knocking.
Inside at a desk set a male with fake blonde hair and a dark undercut, wearing a gray hoodie. The purplish red bruise going around his neck stood out in contrast to his deathly pale skin.
Jonathan looked up from his new work, smiling as he saw that it was sock who had entered.
It was a sad smile accompanied by an apologetic look in his eyes, and for the first time since he was a little child, Napoleon Maxwell Sowachowski started to cry.