The Devil came to her in the flame dancing on the end of her cigaret lighter. She had no money, she had no job, she had no family, no friends, no home, no possessions. She had a talent for surviving. When the Devil came to her, she was somewhere in Missouri that wasn’t St. Louis, huddled in a doorway until the gas station across the street opened. She was out of cigarets, but she was flicking her lighter nervously, anyway, just for something to do.

“Colleen,” said the Devil. “Worship Me and I shall make you a Power and a Mighty Dominion. I shall set you above all the Kingdoms of the Earth.”

Colleen thought about this. “Where were you during the winter?” she asked.

“At your word I will turn these crushed pop cans and condom wrappers to food, a Vast Banquet.”

“Where were you two years ago?”

“Worship Me,” said the Devil. “Bow down before Me, and on you will I shower Riches, you will I drape in Silk and Satin and Rare Gems.”

“Where were you when I was seventeen?”

“Worship Me,” said the Devil. The lighter burned her fingers and she dropped it. The Devil disappeared.