“We are each our own devil, and we make this world our hell.”
“Sometimes I wonder if the light, if goodness, is all that we paint it out to be.
We all have festivals that celebrate the triumph of good over evil, yet we watch movies and devour books that romanticize the misunderstood villains. We seek comfort and security, yet are enthralled by adventure and strife. It’s almost as if the evil beckons to us, testing our limits, then pushing them, breaking down the morals in our heads, creeping in, and gradually making itself home in the crevices of our existence. What if moral corruption is a slow and steady process, a silent killer of the ‘good’, an ongoing journey that disguises itself cleverly through lies and denial? What if, as I speak, as you read, the process is just becoming accelerated? What if you finally feel like your innermost thoughts are being voiced, your innate desires are being discussed, your questions are being addressed and voiced?
What if, at the end of the day, you truly are evil? See, you paint pictures in your head and convince yourself you’re a pious person, or at least a decent one, you tell yourself you have good motives and genuine intentions, but if you admit it, some days more than others, you feel like the battle is beginning to be lost.
Because honestly, why bother? They say blondes have all the fun, they say girls just wanna have fun, but the truth is, it's the so-called villains who have the most fun. And really- aren't we all a little bit more predisposed to questionable actions than we care to admit? How much longer do you think repression is going to work, dear?
Maybe it’s time you embraced the fact that you want this. Do you really want to go about life like everybody else, struggling to convince yourself daily that you’re worthy, you’re successful, you’re kind and generous? When in reality, you only look out for yourself, you despise some of your friends, you lie when you compliment, you cheat- and the list goes on. You see, the ordinary folk, they refuse to answer this siren call that beckons to the ‘dark side’. But you, you’re different. You’re smart enough to see the rationale behind my argument, to realize that trying to be good is a futile attempt, the solace of the weak. If you are truly as clever as I believe you are, you’d wake up and succumb. Succumb to the power that wishes to ensnare you. But if you’re too weak to choose the seemingly harder path, that’s on you. You can continue living a life of monotony, of the common folk. You’d lose your chance to see just how powerful you truly are. The choice is yours - but not really, since you seem to be giving into that very human weakness, the thing you call ‘conscience’. It’s too bad, really, I felt like you had potential. Oh, well.”
The voice booming out of the speakers stopped as suddenly as it had started. The Devil stretched, sipped her wine and glided into the next room. She moved towards her majestic throne, finally sitting, ramrod straight. The red silk of her gown billowed behind her, the material so fine, it shone in the moonlight. A woman walked in, looking pleased.
“General.” the Devil smiled. “So, did we get them?” she questioned, twisting the sparkling red ring on her index finger.
The General smirked. “Another one has fallen prey. It’s becoming almost too easy.”
The Devil looked up. “Just like you to become complacent.” the General shifted uncomfortably.
“I’ve decided to broaden our audience. Recruitment is your job, but your intellectual capacity seems lacking. Well, I solved that, as usual. We’ve now moved our army recruitment programme onto a visual medium as well.”
“As in… paper? The speech on pamphlets?” the General questioned skeptically.
“Recruitment is going on this very second. Yes, I'm looking at YOU, dear reader. Felt the allure of the thrilling evil just yet? Oh, I can feel your revulsion- at yourself. At yourself, for falling so easily into my trap. Ah. The power of simple mind games and psychology. Welcome to the Dark Side honey, you’re going to love it.”
The Devil smiled; a spine-chilling, almost feline smile, her ruby red lips glimmering dangerously in the dark, oozing with promises of the truly sordid times that awaited.
Author: Ananya Chaure
Editor: Sai Reddy