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18 April 2009 @ 10:54 pm
Fan Fiction | Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea ~ "The Devil in the Details"  
Fandom: Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea
Title: "The Devil in the Details"
Author: Dash O'Pepper*
(*This was originally written under a previous handle in late 2000 / early 2001 for some sort of "Monster Challenge" on the long-defunct Voyage group on Yahoo!Groups.)
Genre: Gen
Rating: 10+ (because of themes)
Spoilers: None
Summary: Screwtape reflects on the latest missive received from his nephew, Wormwood.
Warning: Crossover
Length: Under 1000 words
Status: Complete
Disclaimers: The characters of Wormwood, Screwtape, Mal-Edil are owned by the estate of C.S. Lewis, and have been used in homage to this great writer. Mutter’s Spiral is a registered trademark of the BBC. All Rights Reserved. Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea is a registered trademark of 20th Century Fox and Irwin Allen Productions. All Rights Reserved. This work of fan fiction is not meant in any way to infringe on copyrights already held by these companies, their subsidiaries and/or their estates.
Notes: While this fic can be read as a stand-alone, familiarity with C.S. Lewis's The Screwtape Letters and the third season Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea episode "Day of Evil" (written by William Welch) are recommended.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

My Dear Wormwood,

It never ceases to amaze me. The hubris of young dæmons like yourself. Is it merely the curriculum of Iberot, growing stale with the passage of millennia, or are you truly so filled with your own pomposity at the correctness of your position that you fail to realize that as far as these bipedal animals are concerned there is nothing that our infernal ministers haven't already done?

Despite your failure during your last manifestation on that accursed planet and your subsequent remediation, at my urging you were assigned to what should have been a relatively easy post: the SSRN Seaview, whose berth I might add is only a short distance from a city we have held under our thrall for close to a century.

And what have you suggested? What has your recent communiqué been? More of the same, more of the same.

Nephew, that you would even attempt such a foolish gambit, puts me in, shall we say, an indelicate position.

At least your time in the re-education level has made you realize that these two-legged animals have long since evolved beyond accepting us as reptilian, flying beasts with snarling jaws and dripping fangs. That was passé by the time of the Age of Enlightenment. Our manifestations have been far more mundane during the last half-century . . . from a scholarly man of letters who would topple a dynasty to an innocuous paper hanger, we have merely reflected their society's ills back upon them. Pity that their simple minds cannot comprehend our true forms or natures until that day when they are inexorably ours, but their base character is such that they are mindless fools and lemmings unable to grasp the simplest of concepts.

Your decision to appear to the hu-man named Nelson as a distorted illusion of himself was well thought out. There is none so blind, as he who cannot view his own faults. However, your whole premise was flawed. It is not within our power to stack the deck, as it were, against them. Nephew, you caused the damage in their puny reactor room; it was not their own incompetence in handling powers for which they have no understanding. By that one wilful act of yours, you negated years of careful preparation by those of our legions who have gone before.

Did you lay out the terms of the bargain you struck with Nelson? As the law governs our great enemy, we are also governed by laws -- laws which we in the nether regions must also obey. Nelson's sacrifice of his soul was selfless, and such offers are useless to us. Your ill-formed conclusion of using him to trigger a nuclear holocaust was wasted, in so far that you created the original situation in the first place -- you were putting his soul into the enemy's camp! And because of that mistake, you cost us the soul of the one known as Crane, as well. And his would have been a feast for the ages.

While fear of nuclear war is a tremendous motivating factor for them to come with eyes open into our realms, the actual atomic holocaust itself would secure us nothing. Certainly, our hunger in the present might be assuaged, but it would only be a temporary solution. A dead cinder on the outer rim of Mutter's Spiral, would mean that our own mal-edil would be forced to search for food in other regions. And like all mal-edil, we guard our territories jealously. How much better by far for them to continue building their weapons of mass destruction, polluting their waters and air, gutting their natural resources -- we will continually have souls upon souls to play with as their devastation and realization of all they have lost becomes apparent.

Your failure, my dear poppin, means that you cannot be trusted with even the simplest of tasks. The council has recommended your withdrawal immediately from Terra, and your superiors will be pleasured by what can only be described as your retooling.

With kindest regards, I remain your most affectionate and ravenous uncle,


~ Fin ~

© 2009 Dash O'Pepper
tikatutikatu on April 22nd, 2009 04:16 am (UTC)
I will have to go back and watch that episode of VTTBOTS, and see where this fits in - it's been a while since I've seen the show. I do think you've captured Screwtape's voice very well, and I enjoyed the reference to the mal-eldil. Nice work!
Dash O'Pepperpfeffermuse on April 22nd, 2009 04:38 am (UTC)
Thanks so much for your kind words. Your post really made my night.
(Anonymous) on October 24th, 2012 08:52 pm (UTC)
From one C.S. Lewis fan to another
You really have Screwtape down to a science! Pity, humanity never learns...

New Gaia
Dash O'Pepperpfeffermuse on May 5th, 2013 01:05 pm (UTC)
Re: From one C.S. Lewis fan to another
Thanks. I've always adored Screwtape; he's probably one of my favourite C.S. Lewis characters.