“You shall not surely die.” scoffed the prince - “Did you really believe that? Is that what you thought He meant?”
“Well, ... yes,” said Pretty Missy hesitantly.
“No, He’s just testing you, just trying to see if you’re‘woman’ enough to make your own decisions,” the prince argued. “Can you think on your feet? You gotta look out for ‘the big number one’, that’s who you are, you know. What are you going to do? Live your life wondering ‘what if???’”
“But He said not to,” Pretty Missy pathetically pleaded.
“Why did He put it there then? Tell me that,” pushed the prince.
She searched for an answer and came up with only a weak one. “Well, it’s beautiful, but - I don’t know - I’m so confused.”
“Of course you are, you pretty little thing, but I think deep inside you know what you gotta do, don’t you?” he flattered.
She gave a timid smile to the confident prince, drawing on his strength and answered, “Well, I guess ... but He said...”
“Now why are you so ready to listen to Him? What does He know? Has He ever been like you?” (What the prince knew, he’d never tell.)
“Well, I don’t know, I don’t think so,” came her weak reply.
“The sooner you stop buying everything He says, the sooner you’ll get your answers, assured the prince.
“But, I thought He’d tell me anything I needed to know,” Pretty Missy tried to reason.
“Oh please, He talks in parables, stories. He wants you to try to figure it out, but He knows you might not ever be able to. Now is that fair?" asked the prince.
Pretty Missy frowned.
"And I gotta tell you," he continued, "once you start enjoying the best stuff this life has to offer, beginning with the ‘forbidden fruit’ (even the name’s tantalizing, isn’t it?) you’ll know all you need to know. Why, you’ll be just like Him! Can I make it any simpler to understand?”
“Then why did He say I would surely die? Was He lying to me? That’s just not right” Pretty Missy reached out for the ruby red delight.
A slow sadistic grin spread across the face of the prince as he said, “I didn’t exactly say that, but come to think of it, maybe He was lying. I can see you’re starting to get it. I knew you were a smart one.”
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