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Space is Big

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Other than the words "Don't Panic" emblazoned on the cover in large, friendly letters, the device looked like one of those fancy calculators with graphing capabilities. Must've cost someone a fortune, Crowley mused. Wonder why they left it sit in a pub.

Possession being nine-tenths of the law (something that any demon knows by heart), he decided to experiment with his new gadget a bit. There had to be a way to make some nice occult symbols turn up on the graph. He pressed the power button, and nearly dropped the device when it started talking.

"Space," it said, "is big. Really big..."

It went on like that for a while, until Crowley got tired of the calm, reassuring tone of voice and pressed another button. This did nothing to the voice outside of changing its topic of discussion - narration, really, but it amounted to the same thing. He tried a few more buttons, to much the same effect, and was on the verge of throwing the device across the room when someone tapped him on the shoulder.

"Excuse me. Could I have that back, please?"

Crowley gave the man who had interrupted his experiments a long, measured look, and decided not to give up on the device just yet. "Certainly," he replied, "but first, tell me where they hid the graphing function on this, and whether you can make it shut up." Currently, the device was going on about getting a receipt from the lavatory, of all places.

"I mean, really," he said to himself, "I knew I had Texas Instruments under control, but I didn't think they were this experimental--"

"I'd love to help you out, but I'm in a bit of a hurry. You see, the world's about to end."

"And you think this device is going to help prevent it, is that it?"

"No."

It must have been some combination of blunt honesty and cynicism that compelled Crowley to hand over the device. The way Armageddon had entered the conversation so lightly would have worried him, if he were a different sort of demon; instead, he spent the rest of the morning convincing himself the Antichrist wouldn't have that much control over his power this soon after his birthday.

On his way to meet Aziraphale for lunch, he happened to glance at the date on his wristwatch.

It was Thursday.