The Steeple People

By: John Alfred Taylor

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Orabas is a demon who is the head of Couching and Portal, the Steeple People, a company specializing in making steeples for churches. However, these aren't just ordinary steeples. They come with a resident imp or demon hidden inside for the purpose of stirring up trouble for each church's congregants. While preparing for a visit from a minister who wants a tour of the facility, Orabas notices vultures flying around outside, but they're actually angels in disguise, leading Orabas to wonder if their time on Earth may be up.


"The Steeple People" is a stand-alone short story about a factory run by demons that specializes in manufacturing church steeples. However, they aren't ordinary steeples, but instead come with a resident imp or demon living inside that stirs up trouble in their new digs. Orabas, the head of the company, is preparing for a minister who is coming for a tour, which will require extensive glamouring of the facility. Then he notices what appear to be turkey vultures flying around outside, but it turns out they're angels in disguise. The angels seem to be scoping out a lot of different steeples and steeple factories, making Orabas wonder if his and his employees' time on Earth may be limited.

This story wasn't as bad as some in the Blood Lite III: Aftertaste anthology where it's found, but it was rather dull compared to others. It kind of felt like I was following a businessman throughout his days at work, except that said businessman isn't a man at all, but a demon. There were a few too many characters for such a short tale, and I didn't feel like got to know any of them well enough to genuinely care. The question of what the angels are up to didn't really hold my attention well either, and for a supernatural story, there isn't really any action until the last couple of pages. The ending was rather anticlimactic, too. So overall, it was just an okay read that didn't really do a whole lot for me.


John Alfred Taylor @ GoodReads