Perry’s anxiety increased as the Devil led him through Hell.
He had the feeling his host was being suspiciously friendly, but when the Devil ushered him through two gigantic doors into an immense hall,
Perry forgot his skepticism as he beheld the glorious sight in front of him.
“How many books are in this library?” he whispered, after gaping in astonishment.
The Devil’s smile seemed genuine, pleased he’d had such an impact on Perry. With a dramatic gesture, he swept his arm across the towering shelves that vanished into the distance.
“Almost every story ever written, almost every story that ever *will* be written. Indeed, upon these shelves you will even find stories that were dreamed of, yet were never put down on paper.
Lost plays from Shakespeare? Errant daydreams of Dickens? The procrastinations of Poe? They’re nearly all here. For you.”
Perry was blinking back tears.
“Are you… are you sure this isn’t heaven?”
The Devil winked.
“Enjoy yourself,” he said, then he bowed as he left.
Perry could hardly believe it. With a trembling hand, he reached out and lovingly removed a random book from the nearest shelf.
It was one of his favorites, one he’d read many times before, but as he flipped through it, he noticed something odd.
He frowned, and began rifling through another book.
Then another and another, pulling them down as fast as he could before throwing them aside, desperately trying to find at least one book that still contained its final chapters.
Behind him, unnoticed, there was a tiny click as the two gigantic doors were locked forever.