Jack and Stan~ Paranormal Taxes

     The Goodbody family prized individuality above almost everything else. A younger Jack had been encouraged to find that job which made him feel truly alive, and go out to make a living at it. His father hadn’t considered that Jack might run away at the tender young age of seventeen and make a living as a cleaner. His company, which he ran with his rugged companion Stanley Whitkins, was called Paranormal Cleaners. It focused entirely on cleaning those places where the line between banal and bloodcurdling met. He ran into those places with gusto, because to Jack, cleaning was the most basic fight against evil and uncleanliness. He might not be able to remove the hunter from his blood, but he could repurpose it to something that better suited his tastes and desires. That left him with a dilemma come tax time, which had not reached its utmost zenith. Just a little longer until they were finished with their taxes. Then Jack could earn them an audit from a disbelieving government as he had the year before.

     Since he could afford to hire an accountant to help with his taxes, he did so. Turbotax hardly covered the type of business expenses he incurred over the course of an average year. Benjamin Burke was the man who worked with him every year. He wore a suit which appeared to have been ironed into deadly edges. His glasses shone whenever they crossed a stray beam of light. He had grey hair, but it was the sort of grey hair which said that he had experience and vigor. Like Jack, he was incredibly thorough and precise at his work. One would think that would make them the best of friends, but that was decidedly not the case.

     “So you’re telling me the van was surrounded by these vampire cows, and then what happened?”

    “Stanley laid them out with his croquet mallet, and then we staked them with some rosewood. I was wondering if we could deduct his mallet, because it broke on one of their fangs.”

    Benjamin felt his hair growing thinner every year. If Jack didn’t pay so well, he would have quit working with him a long time ago. “Fellas, please. They’ll never take money off your taxes for, and I quote, “Durable croquet mallet made for crushing the skulls of your enemy.”

     “But I need them mallets for crushin’ the skulls of…”

     “Yeah, but Stan they’re never gonna buy it. How much cleaning fluid could you buy for the price of one of those special mallets you break with such frequency?”

     Stan looked up at the ceiling and started holding up fingers. This went on for a long time before he looked down and stated with absolute seriousness, “A lot.”

     “Fifty. It’s fifty. Further on down, you had another goblin hunt. Please, Jack. Tell me you didn’t use your own booze for it this time?”

     “I wish we had, the poor man had a king’s ransom in high end liquor.”

     Benjamin clapped his hands, “Thank God for small favors. I’ve got your mileage for the year already, no thanks to you. Do you have any questions on your end?”

     “If I burned down a motel because it was filthy beyond all reason, the owner is liable and not me, right?”

     “If he had insurance, he should get something for it, but you can’t just go around burning down clients buildings like that.”

     “I’m not sure he was from Earth, so I’m pretty sure he didn’t have insurance.”

     “That would also explain why he never pressed charges. Now we need to talk about your dry cleaning bill, which is substantial. One more thing, fellas. We’re going to have go over your numbers one more time. Just once, before I die, I would like to get you out of an audit.”

     Jack groaned and braced himself. Tax time went on forever every year. They were going to get audited anyways, they always did.

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