Night of the Green Devil


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Post April 19, 2012, 11:51:29 PM

Night of the Green Devil

Other than making a new thread on the forum, I didn't know how to share my extreme enjoyment of the story "Night of the Green Devil" by Christopher Owen. He is talented and clever. One of the few webzines I've been to where the very first story I tried was excelent. Thanks Aphelion.
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Post April 22, 2012, 12:32:59 AM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

First, LordoftheMarsh, let me say, welcome to Aphelion. Keep reading; you'll no doubt find a lot more to like here.

As to the story, about all I could think of it is, "This nasty SOB just never quits, does he?" It was a well-written piece, though.
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Post April 28, 2012, 01:45:02 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

I enjoyed this story quite a bit. It's in the style of high fantasy. It takes some skill to write in this genre without being clunky or overusing tropes. The theme is an ancient one, but the author somehow keeps the story from appearing to be stale.

I don't have any critiques to add. Good job!
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Post April 28, 2012, 05:24:14 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

This is just a well told fantasy story. I don't have anything to add - except that I like the fact the kid had a budweiser at the end. The U.S. is way too uptight about stuff like that. Good job on the story, I enjoyed it beginning to end.
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Post April 29, 2012, 09:29:42 AM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

I have no quibbles with either the writing or the pace of the story. Both were well executed.

My only complaint -- and it's likely just me -- was with the fact that the devil could force someone into a compact based solely on unspoken wishes. Even fleeting wishes that the wisher may be unaware of (see the phrase: "...not knowning what the Green Devil meant..."). When I read that, I thought -- sheesh, if *that's* how it works, then the Green Devil could just walk down the street, peeking into hearts and minds left and right: "I know what it is that YOU wish ... and YOU ... and YOU..." Pretty soon, he'd have the whole country in his pocket. Heck, the whole world, given time.

But again, maybe it's just me.
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Post April 29, 2012, 11:05:28 AM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

regrehan wrote:I have no quibbles with either the writing or the pace of the story. Both were well executed.

My only complaint -- and it's likely just me -- was with the fact that the devil could force someone into a compact based solely on unspoken wishes. Even fleeting wishes that the wisher may be unaware of (see the phrase: "...not knowning what the Green Devil meant..."). When I read that, I thought -- sheesh, if *that's* how it works, then the Green Devil could just walk down the street, peeking into hearts and minds left and right: "I know what it is that YOU wish ... and YOU ... and YOU..." Pretty soon, he'd have the whole country in his pocket. Heck, the whole world, given time.

But again, maybe it's just me.

It wasn't just you. See my previous comment. I'm accustomed to the more traditional satanic contract: the one signed in blood, that bursts into flame the instant you sign it.
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Post April 29, 2012, 05:28:32 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

I don't think the rules were quite as loose as you think... the party of the second part had to be aware of the possibility of a bargain, as the boy was when his Master was killed, and as the second-generation boy (who was not exactly an innocent) was. Strangers on the road having passing thoughts ("Boy, I sure wish I was as rich as Lord Arglebargle! Then I wouldn't have to spend half my time shoveling manure, and the other half feeding the hogs so they can make more manure...") wouldn't qualify, as they wouldn't know there was even the possibility of a deal.

Sergio, of course, made his deal being fully aware of the consequences (hence his frequent posts in the "plug their work" thread). However, he has called up the ghost of Daniel Webster to prepare his defense in advance... (I think he will claim to be a worshiper of the old Roman gods, and therefore not bound by a Judeo-Christian demon / fallen angel. You know, the old "you can't take me -- you don't have jurisdiction! Neener neener, eh eh eh" strategy.)
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Post April 29, 2012, 07:22:55 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

Re: "the party of the second part had to be aware of the possibility of a bargain"
I'll have to take your word on that -- it was not at all clear to me.

Admittedly, you're dealing with a devil here, so any hope of consistent rules is a wasted hope. Given that the devil twisted the words "I want nothing from you" -- when the boy's intent was to NOT enter into a compact -- then intent means nothing, but words do. And, later, Nicholas said nothing, but apparently let some wish bubble to the surface of his mind, which the devil latched onto as binding -- so, then, words don't matter, but intent (of some sort) apparently does. Finally, the devil tells us that "[h]e has sinned in this world, and that is all that is required to deal with me." ... well, who in this world would that requirement exclude?
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Post April 30, 2012, 12:32:57 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

regrehan wrote:Re: "the party of the second part had to be aware of the possibility of a bargain"
I'll have to take your word on that -- it was not at all clear to me.

Admittedly, you're dealing with a devil here, so any hope of consistent rules is a wasted hope. Given that the devil twisted the words "I want nothing from you" -- when the boy's intent was to NOT enter into a compact -- then intent means nothing, but words do. And, later, Nicholas said nothing, but apparently let some wish bubble to the surface of his mind, which the devil latched onto as binding -- so, then, words don't matter, but intent (of some sort) apparently does. Finally, the devil tells us that "[h]e has sinned in this world, and that is all that is required to deal with me." ... well, who in this world would that requirement exclude?


If intent matters, then the offhand "I wish that bugger would drop dead!" thoughts that cross most minds at least once per day (unless that's just ME...) wouldn't count because the wisher would have no expectation that his or her wish might have some effect. Again, I think the awareness that the wish (spoken or not) MIGHT be granted is necessary here.
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Post April 30, 2012, 03:11:22 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

[quote] Finally, the devil tells us that "[h]e has sinned in this world, and that is all that is required to deal with me." ... well, who in this world would that requirement exclude?regrehan
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Really, if you're getting specific, it could mean more people than you think. For instance those who have recently confessed would have no sin - via the Catholic Church. That's why McBeth didn't want to kill his enemy while he was praying, because his soul was pure and he would go straight to heaven.

Also (once again via Catholism) infants who have been recently christened would be guilt-free (ergo the CHRIST in christened).
Sin free: Jesus Christ; Mother Mary (ever virgin - sorry about that Joseph); Mary's Mother...
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Post April 30, 2012, 03:15:52 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

Wait Wait Wait! That reminds me of a joke! So Jesus Christ has stopped the stoning of Mary the prostitute, and he holds up his hands and says, "Let he who is without sin throw the first first stone." The crowd is enveloped in silence until suddenly there is a small 'plink' as a pebble hits the ground at the girl's feet.
Jesus the Christ looks over and says, "Mother! Sometimes you make me soooo MAD!" :wink:
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Post April 30, 2012, 04:38:53 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

Re: bottomdweller's pre-joke reply

Fair enough.

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Post May 04, 2012, 11:46:14 PM

Re: Night of the Green Devil

That was a very good story. I enjoyed it a lot!

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