Some scenes can be more fun to write than others. Here, Hector encounters jokes he only thought were old.
“We talk lots of things,” Trevor said, putting the tray down and proceeding to dole out portions of food. “Knows lots bad old jokes. I like jokes.”
Hector knew the sort of jokes the demon enjoyed, as he had been afflicted with them once Trevor felt comfortable enough to share them with his human friend. He seemed especially fond of the sort of jokes that would have scandalized Hector’s grandmother.
“She knows some of the old Galibioniacizeh jokes?” Luci appeared to be shocked at this revelation. “I thought those had been lost to the passage of time.”
“Yes. I like one about shepherd and goat girl,” Trevor told her, then laughed his deep-throated laugh.Luci joined the demon in laughter at the comment.
Hector sat back and watched the two sharing a moment of remembered pleasure. He wondered how often something like that had occurred in Hell. It was not one of the most cheerful places he had ever been.
Schadenfreude did not count, after all, no matter how amusing it might be.
“And all was left was horns!” Trevor guffawed. Luci was wiping blood-red tears from her cheeks with an otherwise pristine handkerchief, having gotten herself back under control, but the demon’s comment took her right back into that laughter.
“I might want to hear this joke, you two,” Hector suggested.
“It doesn’t translate well, Hector,” Luci choked through her laughter. “Please trust me when I tell you that.”
“You could always try telling it to me,” he said, feeling a bit hurt at what seemed to be dismissal of his abilities. “I’m game. I do speak several other languages, after all.”
Luci rolled her eyes and gave a sigh that ended in a soft snort.
“There are too many terms that don’t translate well at all into those other languages, so most of the joke would be lost.”
“You’re kidding, right?”
Luci and Trevor exchanged a look and then erupted into laughter once again.
“That what he say,” the demon giggled. Luci pounded the demon on his shoulder, having reached a point where she was gasping and beyond speech.
“That joke never gets old,” Luci grinned weakly when she once again regained control of herself. “Good to know it’s still making the rounds.”
“How old is this joke, Luci,” Hector asked.
“Several thousand years, Hector,” she replied. “Give or take a millennium or three. Just a wee bit older than the farmer’s daughter joke, I believe, but not by much.”“The farmer’s daughter joke is really that old?”
Yes, he had always known the joke was at least so old that it had gray hair, but Hector had no idea it was also toothless.
“You have no idea,” Luci said. “It actually began as a hunter gatherer joke but changed over time with the discovery and development of agriculture.”
“Try me, Luci,” Hector encouraged her. “I promise I’ll try to keep up.”
“I hope you’ve got a strong stomach, my friend.”
“I’m sure I’ll surprise you.”
“I sincerely hope that’s true, Hector.”
A half hour later, the human was looking a bit green around the gills and more than a little pale.
“That’s funny?” he demanded.
“Context, perhaps, Hector,” Luci replied. “It was a very different time, after all. Social mores were not what they are these days. I told you that there are concepts that simply don’t translate. It would be far funnier if you understood them.”
“Pardon me if I leave it to you then,” Hector conceded, accepting his defeat. “I should have paid attention to what you were trying to tell me and not pushed you into it.”