SHELOTH

There are some things a young girl cannot understand as she cowers in her closet, listening to the loud cursing outside...

Even Theseus in the Labyrinth, hearing the minotaur bellow off in the distance couldn't have heard anything so beastly, perhaps because the words were coming from her father's throat. Somehow, that fact and the sound itself combined to make it truly horrid and terrifying, almost as bad as what was to come as the door yanked open.

"THERE YOU ARE!" he roared at her.

I will not tell you what happened afterward, or how many times. Most likely, it would happen again the next day, the day after and the day after that. If not by this man, by others for there is no ground floor in hell...
Is this man evil? In a way and yet, not. He is to evil as a rusty, rundown shack is to buildings. Disgusting, petty, sick... but small, weak and worthless. Perhaps not to the poor girl who has to live in this hellish place but in the grand scheme of things... a minor player is she. He may be evil but his is a small, brutish evil.
But evil has a trick and in that trick is its greatest power...

The same, night after night until...

"HOW MANY...!" The man roared as he opened the door, expecting to find as usual the thing he used, which he thought he had every right to and as he saw fit. Only thinking beings need a reason to live. For some, those reasons are small, personal pleasures. Some of those pleasures can be utterly unspeakable...

But things had changed. Too much vile horror had been visited upon her and now, it would all come roaring back as he found not the girl but rage... Terrible, raging hatred...

She was eleven years old.

It is not content to stay where it is. Much like a virus, it must spread. And more than that, it must remake itself, refine itself and build on its might.

And so, sick little men, women and children do their terrible things and in their own way, plant the seeds, water them and one day, they bloom...

And yet, her hell was not over. In a way it had just begun.

You cannot understand evil but understand this:
Beware evil's taint. THAT is its greatest power and through the appalling deeds of the small ones do the great ones live.

Endlessly...

She screamed. And screamed. And screamed but evil is patient.
Maybe not all the time. I'm sure there are plenty of cases where evil acted immediately, even prematurely. But in the end, that can be more attributed more to the failing of humans than that of the darkness within them. Impatient, greedy, shortsighted, obsessive behavior led to rash action. That may or may not have led to failure but those evils are usually the small ones. True ones are patient.

They will wait.

They will manipulate and control, staying deep in the shadows until it is truly time to bloom, carefully keeping its vessels, knowing and unknowing, on the set path needed for it to become truly strong.

"She'll do anything."

"You sure? My crew and I..."

"She's a freak. I think she likes being treated that way. Found her on the street. Had her for a while. Any time she says 'no', I changed her mind. She'll do what you want."

Another small man, doing his small destructive evils, leading others down the path of least resistance and corrupted vice, offering them a chance to sate their own darker urges at the cost of others. Tapping deep into the innate desire buried deep within all humans, some deeper than others, is the desire to harm.
Why we have such an urge is unknown. Perhaps it is a survival tool no longer needed by any race yet remains, for better or for worse...
Survival is, in the end, what drives virtually everyone and for some, it is mighty indeed. It is so strong that things like mental sanity and seeking change are snuffed out, crushed, obliterated. Even if their life is hell, some still want to live. And some can find no other way than to stay in that hell...
Perhaps that explains why we find this girl here, knowing what we do of her future and what we have seen of her past. She has grown older but her face still seems caught between that of a girl and a woman - a remarkably lovely face, even for that of an alien, unscarred and unbattered but only because the man who believes he owns her does not believe in damaging the merchandise in ways that can be seen. The scars lie hidden and intertwined with older, rotten ones in her very soul.
Despite what she did, it did not free her. Caught in a world which can be truly merciless and cruel to some and her body fraught with a despair that would not allow her to just give up and drift away in the dark, her journey to survive eventually ended in the clutches of this man. He fed and clothed her and extracted a price for such favors that is utterly appalling.
She knew no other way to live, her lone reaction of rage forgotten in the stress of the moment. She only wanted to survive.

Until recently...

"No."

"What did you say?"

"I've done enough today. No."

Evil is patient. It will wait until the time is right. Until so much bile is stored that critical mass is inevitable...

"Look, you *****! You do what I say! I OWN YOU! YOU'RE NOTHING BUT WHAT I SAVED FROM THE TRASH! YOU WILL!"

"I SAID NO!"

The rage comes again and this time, the memories are not obliterated as it all comes around her. And yet, all she can see are their looks. The way all men always looked at her. Her father, her male siblings, everyone she has had to take to survive... like she was something they could use and discard. With no consequences, no cares in the world. With no reason for either. Why would they? They were men and she was just a woman. She was trash and they were gods. They had power while she had none.

Until now.

She does not scream this time. They do. The time had finally come. The dam had finally broken. Anything that was left of the girl in the being we know as Sheloth died that day and something mean was born.

Evil will wait for the right time.

And when it does, the wrong that will be done is far worse.

Such blazing, angry eyes!

Then the Blue Devil made her relive it, again and again, over and over, until her rage was absolute. Then he came to her and made her his ally. Indeed, ally is perhaps the wrong word...
Her pain had driven her mad, a madness that focused around one thing: a furious hatred of men. How the Blue Devil, a male in some senses, managed to convince her to work with him was lost to time. Perhaps she had somehow put aside her terrible rage for what the Phantom Lord had planned at the time: a ritual to gain godlike power that he perhaps promised to share with her. But there was no ritual, only lies and quests. The Blue Devil was already more powerful than any god that had come forth so why would he want this ritual? But Sheloth did not know what plans he had for her, or what horrid things he had in store for her and in the end, she would never know.

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