Title: The Devil's Name
Summary: Seek and you shall find.
I made my life's work to find out the Devil's name. I knew that exposing the mythical Grendel, even being at the top of my profession as an investigative journalist, would not be easy. I told my publishers I would be taking a sabbatical, took on a less perceptive mistress, and, to all intents and purposes, faded out from the public view, researching meanwhile the rarefied world of contract killers. My reasoning was that Grendel's early years as an assassin would be less well hidden than his present, giving me more chances to capture him, so to speak, between the pages of what would be my last and most extraordinary (not to mention profitable) book.
The year I thought the search would take became two, and then three, before I thought I was just a step away from finding out who he was.
And then one night he showed up in my studio late at night and told me his name, bonding me to him. I had been so far from the mark, I knew his blanket of deception was deeper and more complex than anything I could imagine. I could never break or expose it, and he knew that. And he didn't kill me.
In exchange for my life I am now writing a different book. It's not about him, of course, but about one of his would-be competitors, which I have no doubt will have his standing in the underworld profoundly damaged by it. He will probably order my death, but still my chances are better than if I betrayed Grendel.
He hasn't told me so, but I have come to understand that he only let me get as far as I did in my investigation to make more believable the book I will now publish.
The book he's dictating to me.