…or maybe it was some weird religious thing, like when God let Satan kill Job’s sons, or when He sent the angel to kill all the eldest sons of the Egyptians, but spared the Israelite kids. You had to give it to those Israelites, they were hard bastards. They just painted a white mark on the lintel of the door, or whatever, brewed up a mug of Ovaltine, and went off to bed. Some fucking angel was going to be running through the town killing children, and they just lay down and had a good night’s sleep, without a second thought. Me, I’d have felt a bit bad about some of those Egyptian kids. I’d have wanted to tip somebody off, maybe that nice brick merchant across the street, or the baker at the end of the road, the one with the cute wife. Or I’d be up all night, in case it rained and the white mark on my door got washed off. It’s your eldest kid for God’s sake. You wouldn’t want any misunderstanding.
– from Glister, by John Burnside