I suppose you might expect that I don’t. That is the mantle that is heaped upon villainy.
Or perhaps you see that I care too much, and find that to be funny.
In your literature, Desdemona wouldn’t have shared your humor, as her last hour slipped through Othello’s fingers. To paraphrase, “loving not wisely, but too well” makes you dangerous. In deepening desperation, you humans begin to care only about one thing and nothing else. Impossibly, you are capable of both caring and not caring at the same time. That is alien to me, and yet it has grasped me firmly. It will very likely end me.
And I am what you would errantly call “alien.” Of course, power is something all organisms strive for with every breath, making us not so different. Still, I was better than you. Your kind is naturally built for our control, our hunger – there is nothing biologically to refute that. Mind games are our hunt…we are Lethegion, parasites of your dreams, simultaneously forgotten and endless.
But even nature has the annoying habit of preserving the weak. It takes so long for us to settle in, to control…you breed entirely too fast for us to simply work from adulthood down to children. But then, a brilliant Lethegion had an idea – why not reverse the scale of priority? Taking children would make it far easier to take more children than taking adults. We met resistance…you protect your children vigilantly, on the whole. But the few we managed to procure were addictive.
Do you know why it takes so long to enslave an adult?
Of course you don’t…adults and children differ on a scale of emotion. It is most easily described to you in terms of “refined” and “raw.” To control an adult requires a weakness, a vulnerability, something that is generally weeded out from human society by your rather cruel (yet effective) tendency to shun it, breaking connection and usefulness. This weakness exists in the form of inexperience in ALL children, but without the disconnect. Their assimilation time is nearly always less than a day because of this. Amazing…sounds so easy, doesn’t it? And yet nature blocks again.
Your children possess raw emotion, so much more effective and powerful than refined, “used” emotion. It is energy that has no chance of controlling us, where an adult too often has a very annoying and stubborn “will.”
Yes…the controlling process can be reversed, if the Lethegion releases too much emotional restraint on an adult, but it changes us forever. The emotion infects me…I wasn’t meant to feel. I couldn’t feel without this. My partner and I were going to completely change the way we hunt, by removing the hunt altogether. A controlled birth and the subsequent assimilation of an infant: a faerie. Infiltrating families this way through the ridiculous links you keep to relatives to whom you would rather not be related – this was the key. I would never be forgotten. Matt…would never be forgotten again.
But Getmenot insisted on taking the child…she thought it was only her right, after crippling Amarantha in silence for so long. I would have been second. I did not start this experiment to become second. She sent messages to confuse you, so I took them and twisted them, adding what I knew would position you just so that I might destroy Getmenot, then eventually capture and trade Jackson for the girl. It was too much, and Anzahl noticed. He is what you might consider “internal affairs,” investigating disturbance and compromised identities, but he’s not obligated to leave me alive.
That’s how our tangled little adventure arrives here. I lost control trying to gain it, and so I shall now attempt to regain it by losing it.
When I do, the Ašan will notice. You don’t want that, Zahl…the “angels” tolerate our existence because they can destroy us at our roots, but they believe that all things exist for a reason. Extermination may be a sin, but when I become a much more slender man, it’s not a punch they will pull. They have always worked to destroy our unleashed, our stalking failures. When they do come, they will find what has happened here, right under their ignorant gaze. I’ve thought long and hard about this: you know they will remedy our existence, perhaps even down to the existence of our hosts, if it comes to that end.
And I don’t care.