(My sis and I are doing the Ray Bradbury 54 week writing challenge and this is my first short story. I have been told by a few Christians that this is a promotion of satanism, however it was inspired by C.S. Lewis’s book “The Screwtape Letters”. I am not condoning satanism but rather trying to point out what I was taught as a child. If you are a survivor- this story may trigger you. However, I wanted to publish my first short story online.)
The dark permeated from his eyes as he stared intently into mine, a sly smile on his face that made me nervous but nonetheless filled me with anxious anticipation.
“You summoned me for an interview?” His smile broadened.
“I did,” I replied, “I felt it was time that people understood who you are and, more so, what your intentions are.”
“Your persistence is impressive, and so here I am. So let’s talk.”
The rituals to summon the Devil had been hard to come by, and came at a great cost. Not to me especially, but to those who had given their lives to help me raise the Dark Lord. Now that I was sitting in the same room with him, I wondered if I hadn’t made a monumental mistake, but since I had come this far, I decided to keep going.
“So what do you call yourself” I asked, warming up to the interview, and the questions I had so desperately wanted to ask.
“Names are unimportant,” he replied, “I have so many.”
“But you are, indeed, the one who many refer to as Lucifer?”
Staring into my eyes, his joy at having me speak his name was almost palatable, and he almost looked giddy.
“We can go with that,” he answered, leaning forward to engage me further. “You brought me here, so whatever you need to call me will suffice.”
“So what was it like, falling from Grace?”
He seemed amused at the question, and after a moment of reflection, he leaned back in his chair and began.
“I didn’t “fall” from Grace, as you put it. I walked away from God, and from Heaven. The “God” you believe loves you feels no such thing. In fact, I am not even sure he is even aware of you. Heaven is a place for followers, and I am not one who is able to simply take orders from such a being. It wasn’t a hard choice to make, walking away from His light. As it is said, “The greatest light produces the darkest shadow”, and I found the power within to be stronger than anything He ever provided.”
“So you believe in power, rather than love?”
“Love is nothing more than a chemical interaction in your brains. Like everything else, it doesn’t last, and I have no need for such fabricated feelings. You humans think that love is everything, and yet none of you believe enough to act upon it to any degree that doesn’t serve yourselves.”
“So you think love is selfish?”
“In a way, yes I do,” he replied, “It only serves the one who feels it. It stifles logic, and those who fall under its spell only see what they want to see. Misguided by only viewing what they love, you seem to disregard the truth.”
“And what is the truth?” I asked, not knowing if I fully trusted what was being said, but so entranced that I was compelled to delve further.
“You seek the truth, do you? Well let me give you what you seek. The truth about love is that it is self-serving. Humans are eager to experience love, and yet most have no need for it. The only thing you need is yourselves, and you diminish your ability to live fully by focusing on others in such a way. Your God uses this as a distraction, to prevent you from realizing that the greatest power within yourselves is the ability to choose what suits you best and that it is this that allows you to experience your lives more fully. Selfishness is the foundation of life, and all else is a lie. Given to you by a God who has tried to convince you that your salvation lies within helping others, when the fact is that self-preservation is fundamental to life, many of you have been deluded with an idea that it your happiness is dependent upon how you treat your fellow humans.”
He continued. “Your species has survived because of the fact that you are selfish. Fighting against the world, many of you have sacrificed yourselves to this belief that God will help you when, in fact, the truth is that you are all in charge of your destinies. There is no more than 1% of your population that understands this, and it is they who are blessed with the power to determine the world around them. The rest of you are “swimming upstream” as they say, convinced that you are going to achieve this power through prayer to a God that doesn’t listen. I listen. I answer. I provide. Those who follow and worship me know this, the rest of you are doomed to fail because you are disillusioned with this belief that Heaven is waiting, when the fact is that the only thing any of you have is the here and now.”
“But it is has been said that those who seek the world will lose their souls in the process.”
“Given to you by the very ones who have lived their lives not only seeking what lies within the world, but who have gained power in doing so in the process. Those in control, those who have lived their lives honestly, were the very ones who gave you your religious dogma. They tell you to sit tight, pray, and wait for miracles while they have done what they could to do the sensible thing and keep control of the world which they own. I have blessed them with riches, for it is only those who understand the complexities of power who are able to use it. “Do as though whilst” is the only dogma that you need to understand, and waiting for promises to be fulfilled in death is folly. God tells you to obey, to love. My mantra is simple- and that is “to live life to the fullest”. To love yourself is the only avenue that provides results, and you only have to look at your world to see the truth of this.”
“But Jesus denied you, and he ended up in Heaven.” I countered.
“So say those who have given you your dogma that controls you.”
“You’re saying that isn’t correct?”
“The question is, how would they know? This is simply a fairy tale that soothes the masses that are afraid of the finality of death. Take the garden in which Jesus supposedly atoned for the world. It is written that he bled from every pore, and that he spoke directly to God, but he was alone so how would anyone know for certain what happened? It was written that afterwards, he found his disciples asleep, so who was there to see such “miracles”? This is a fantasy, given to you by those who control you and told to you to keep you complacent and compliant.”
“You are saying that the story of Jesus is false?”
He laughed at the question, and leaned forward, speaking almost in a whisper.
“Jesus is the greatest story ever given to man. Do you know why? Because it allowed my minions to effectively keep mankind under their thumb for centuries. Convinced that he was going to fly out of the clouds and save them at any moment, the masses have been lulled into complacency, thus allowing those who know the truth to do whatever they want unabated. They do nothing but pray while the world slips through their grasp, and sit idly by while they become enslaved, waiting for a day that God will save them. A day, by the way, that will never happen. It has been the greatest lie that has ever been told, and nothing could have been more effective.”
“So God isn’t going to save mankind?”
“Like I said before, He isn’t even aware of you. He is too busy frolicking with his chosen in Heaven. That is why I was given the reigns over the world. He has no interest in you. If this was not so, could I have made the offer to Jesus that I did? He chose to deny me, and you nailed him to a cross as a result. Now you all have been convinced that this saved all of you, when, in fact, all he became was another dead martyr. Nothing more, nothing less- but your beliefs have proven to be the best way to keep you from doing anything to save yourselves and the world. Never has there ever been a better lie, and it has provided those who know the truth to steal the world’s resources away from the lot of you.”
Perplexed and more than a little confused, I could feel my resolve in Heaven dissipating with every word he spoke. My feelings of hopelessness and anger had begun to oppress me, and I was unable to break away from my ideas that everything I was taught had been nothing more than a lie used to control me.
“You are saying, then, that everything mankind believes about Jesus and God has been nothing more than a lie?”
“Given to you by your masters, who understand that I am the only savior that mankind has. But the lot of you is starting to understand the truth. You claim you believe, and yet you allow your fellow man to starve, you wage war to acquire others resources, and the hate you feel for those around you has become epidemic. You blame foreigners, homosexuals, women, blacks, and anyone else who keep you from facing the facts that your lives are a result of your ineffectiveness to grasp the truth. That truth is that I am Lord, and only those who worship themselves are able to be blessed by me. This life is all you have, and all your prayers and diligence to a God who doesn’t truly exist in this realm will not save you in this, or any other life.”
“So you are saying that the only path to happiness is through worshiping you?”
“Basically that is exactly what I am saying. Worship yourself, do what you want, achieve whatever you desire by whatever methods that are available to you, and your lives will change for the better. Worshiping me is easy, you only have to love yourself enough to do what is necessary to achieve and obtain what you desire, and forget about the rest of world who is too lazy and stupid to do the same thing. When you realize that those around you are beneath you is when you will become free enough to achieve that which you fully deserve and are entitled too.”
“So should we disregard the idea that doing so will put us in Hell?”
“Don’t most of you believe that you are already in Hell? How could it get any worse? Your unhappiness is your own doing. Serve yourselves and all of that will change. You will find the power and riches that you lack now, and the world will change. Screw compassion for your fellow man. Let them starve with the prayers on their lips. Serve yourself and those who help you to get fortune and you will find the fulfillment that you abundantly lack now.”
Perplexed, I decided to end this interview as I had to process what I had been told.
“To finish, is there anything else you would like to add?” I asked, almost afraid of what his answer was going to be.
“Only this and that is that the world is changing- becoming more mine every day. To go against me is folly. The only real truth in this world of yours is that of self-promotion. The key to your happiness lies solely within you, and the only way to obtain that joy is to do whatever you must to make you as powerful as you need to be. This is my realm, and those who succeed only do so by worshipping my ideals. In doing so, you will obtain all that you desire, for I will bring you the abundance you lack now. Stop worrying about others, they are responsible for themselves, and there is nothing you can do to sway them from their own destruction. Let them pray to their God for salvation, and in the meantime, determine your own by acting in your self-interests. The world is what you make of it, and with a little determination and hard work, by acting on your own desires, you will produce a world that is fitting for you to live in. Live for yourself. This is the only mantra that you need to succeed. Look around at those who are already doing so and you will see the truth in what I am saying. Forget God, forget your dogmas that are scripture based, and start living your lives for yourself. You will be much happier and find much more fulfillment as a result.”
“You have given me quite a bit to think about. I want to thank you for your time,” I concluded, more than happy that this interview was finished.
“My pleasure my friend,” he responded. “I have a feeling we will be seeing each other again soon, and I look forward to it.”
With that said, he vanished. However, the darkness in the room remained, and I walked away from the interview a changed man, although it remained to be seen if it was for the better.