“How hard can this be?” I muttered while pulling on an oversized, peacock blue robe that had way too much glitter in my opinion. But, what can you expect when you buy something off of eBay? Plus, it was called a “Glittering Wizard Robe”… *sigh*. The things you have to do.

I was tired of sitting on my hands, drinking “healthy” smoothies, following the latest trends on TickTock, scrolling through my Instagram, and doing online surveys. Although there’s nothing wrong with that—and I did get paid to do some of them—it’s just not practical. I mean, how can you say I’m a focaccia when I’m obviously a baguette! The audacity of some of those surveys! Anyway, we’re getting off-topic. 

The other day, I was laying on my couch in my workout gear about to start my stretches, when I started scrolling through Instagram instead – as one does – an ad popped up. Now, normally I would just keep scrolling but this… something made me stop. It was a post from an advice blog talking about how to get instant job offers in your career field. 

To be honest, it did look kind of shady but desperate times call for desperate measures. So I called the number they had listed, and let me tell you, it was not your usual advice column.

After talking to the “consultant”, I had accumulated a list of some of the items I’d need, hence the blue coat. They would also be shipping a manual and told me to start as soon as I could. Thank god for same day delivery! 

After pulling on the robe I looked around my living room. I had moved the furniture to the side, rolled the rugs up, and drawn a perfect circle on the oak floorboards with some of my old Crayola chalk. And inside the circle, a five pointed star. Look, I know what you’re thinking, but the company assured me that this was a sure fire way to get instant job offers and it was completely safe! 

All I had to do was summon a… demon, I guess. I mean, that’s what it says: 

How to summon a demon 

The manual —which was a parchment scroll, stained with age —in hand, I set out to prepare the final steps. The stupid robe kept getting caught under my feet and I was worried I’d fall on my face and rip either the robe or scroll. I placed five lemons at each of the points of the star, and a glass of Simply Lemonade in front of me. Look, I know this is weird but at least I didn’t need to go get blood or do a sacrifice. 

I stood at the front of the circle and began to chant, “Abracadabra – What? Are you kidding me?!” I looked down at the manual and at the bottom in bold it stated, “Just read the chant, yes it sounds weird.” How professional. I rolled my eyes and continued on.

Abracadabra Alakazam, Minute Maid Lemonade… As sweet as a lemon… I summon thee to help me?” 

As soon as I ended the chant, a gust of wind blew through my apartment. Yellow fog began sprouting from the circle and I went tumbling backwards. Hands shaking, I pulled down the robe covering my face, and I was shocked at what I saw.

“WHAT?!” the yell tore out of me as I couldn’t believe what was there. “What – What are YOU?”

“I’m an accountant,” the thing replied.

“HOW? HOW?! I summoned a DEMON!” I spoke outraged. I could feel my cheeks begin to heat up and the telltale sign of a headache beginning to form. “I got a LEMON?!”

This – this THING stared at me standing on its skinny little legs. It looked like someone drew a lemon and put tiny little arms and legs on it. Then drew a cute little smile. 

A cute little yellow LEMON was standing in the middle of the circle, inside my apartment, where a demon was supposed to be. Where did I go wrong?!

“Look lady-”

“Aria. My name is Aria.” I corrected it as I went over the instructions on the manual.

“Right, right. Aria. You need to learn how to read.” It said nonchalantly.

“Learn how to READ?! The manual says “demon”!!!” I exclaimed, waving the scroll at it. 

“Noooo, it says “lemon.” Cursive,” The little shit gave me a smile. “The curl at the beginning of the “L” is a tad bit more defined than usual. You should’ve known better.” It blinked up at me innocently. 

My blood boiled and my left eye began to twitch. A crazed look set across my face.

“If I had half the mind, I’d make you into a lemonade!” I screeched.

“Aria, maybe keep it down a bit. The neighbours will think you’ve gone loony,” It said, giving me a pitiful smile. “We wouldn’t want that, would we? Oh, and lemonade? I’d like a glass please. With mint.”

“That is cannibalism. And I need you to help me!” I seethed.

The lemon simply shrugged and began to look around my apartment. “Nice place you got here,” it said as it moved towards my furniture, placing its dainty stick hands into its lemon pockets?

I sighed in exasperation as I saw where the lemon was going. “Don’t you dare! Don’t – d – no! Get off my sofa!”

“Why? It’s comfy.” It said with an angelically innocent look on its face.

I couldn’t believe this. After all this effort, after everything I did, I was tricked? I was yet another victim of a scam company. Silly me for thinking this would actually work. Well, I could at least make the best of the situation. Who knows, maybe the lemon could help me?

“Look, I need help. I don’t have a job and the consultant said that all this,” I said gesturing to the circle, “would help me. You would help me. Albeit I was thinking I’d summon a demon but I got you instead.”

The lemon jumped off my sofa and walked towards me. “Well, if you summoned me then I am supposed to help you. Besides, I am an accountant.” The lemon peered up at me, smiling. “You need a job, you say? Well, I know someone who knows someone who knows someone who works in a job agency connecting candidates to prospective clients and employers. Send over your resume to me and I’ll connect you to them.” It said as it pulled out a laptop and a bottle of Simply Lemonade from its pocket?

“Where are you getting these things from?!” I exclaimed.

“I’m an accountant.”

Image: Francesco Cantinelli on unsplash.com