Sympathy for the Devil This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

February 27, 2014
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Every town has one. Fairview is no exception. Call him the boogeyman, the dark man, the evil one, or Norman Ford. You see, Norman killed his wife. Not to get explicit, but the corpse was almost unrecognizable. Pushed her down the stairs and stabbed her until there wasn’t anything left. But because of some unorthodox way the police gathered evidence (I don’t know, I’ve never been a legal expert), the judge threw the whole case out. Norman now lives alone in a house by the lake. A couple of months back, a few kids set fire to the shed in his backyard. Norman didn’t press charges. Last Halloween someone killed his cat, Norman didn’t press charges.

I watch you Norman, do you know that? I watch you walk up and down the streets at night. Why do you give bread to those homeless vagrants? Those same “high class intellectuals” that run this town abhor even simple contact with these individuals. People like Jimmy Goldberg; I think I saw him punching one of them in the chest. Did you know that Norman?

Do you know I saw you take in that dog? That McDougall mutt. The one old Harry kicked out of his house last week. Do you know I looked in your window and saw you feeding that mongrel? I saw you petting him, cuddling him for God’s sake! Why Norman? Does it make you feel better about yourself? Do you think it makes up for the unspeakable act you committed? Do you also know I follow you to the cemetery every night, and see you visit your wife’s tombstone? Why do you weep, Norman? She’s dead and buried and there’s nothing you or anyone else can do about it. Nothing at all.

A robbery occurred last month at the convenience store and Sheriff Goldberg was so sure it was you even though you were having lunch at that diner you always go to. Didn’t they knock down your door and drag you out by the legs, Norman? Didn’t they? They were all ready to lock you up and throw away the key before your waiter corroborated your story. A fire burnt down the Myers mill on Monday, killing the two owners, and the Sheriff was all out to shoot you over it until video evidence pointed otherwise. Yesterday, a fifteen year old boy named Jimmy Myers went missing. Did you know that, Norman? Do you know that even as I speak, Sheriff Goldberg, Mr. McDougal and even Mayor Howard are making a posse to invade your house, kill you, and rescue that kid from whatever hellhole they think you have him trapped in?

I have a secret, though. I know that you didn’t rob that store, or burn that mill or take the boy, Norman. Do you want to know how I know that, Norman? Are you sure? I robbed that store, and then burnt that god forsaken mill down to the ground and I danced on the ashes of those who lived there. I know everything about you, Norman; from the day you were born until the day you’re going to die. I know what and where you eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I even know what brand of toothpaste you use. Crest Cavity Protection. Good brand. What I don’t know, however is why do you give your food to those worthless beggars and that pathetic mutt, and why do you weep at the grave of one which you helped put there? Why, God dammit, why? Sorry, I lose control sometimes. My mother, before she perished in that mill fire, used to scold me for outbursts like that. My own father used to call me insane and locked me in my room whenever we had company. The great cotton king, Samuel Myers, tried his best to hide his only son who he thought had a few bats in the belfry. Well, how do you feel now, Dad? Slaving away in whatever pit in hell Satan forces you to, burning for all eternity! I’m not crazy. You know that, Norman, don’t you? That’s one thing you have to understand about me, Norman, I’m not crazy. I’m going to find out why you weep, Norman, you mark my words. I’m going to find out everything that I don’t already know about you. Then, well… we’ll have some fun then won’t we?

Every town has one. In Fairview’s case, that just happens to be me.

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This article has 19 comments. Post your own now!

societykilledmusic said...
Jan. 14, 2016 at 4:11 pm
WOW! I love this so much! I really do! Great job! :D
WinterFrost said...
Oct. 7, 2015 at 3:02 pm
Wow, this was really well written. Great character perspective - unique and intriguing. Keep up the awesome work!
prettypuppy88 said...
Sept. 7, 2015 at 9:51 am
This is probably the coolest story I've ever read. Congratulations. You're awesome.
ABPippins said...
Apr. 2, 2015 at 9:25 am
Phenomenal! Keep up the good work and looking forward to reading more :)
DarkTower This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 15, 2015 at 6:55 pm
So cool, I love the way you set up Norm as the devil but it's you all along! Bravo!
The_DoctorDonna said...
Jan. 5, 2015 at 11:27 am
wow. that's all I can think to say... you're writing technique is flawless, and I was gasping and holding my breath the whole time. Incredible.
jordan said...
Mar. 24, 2014 at 7:21 pm
Amazing for a 16 year old..can't wait to see more of his writing.  Had me holding my breath.  Beth   
Bama6531 said...
Mar. 24, 2014 at 9:06 am
Great story, love the way he writes, suspenseful.
Sampp said...
Mar. 18, 2014 at 12:19 am
Loved this story. Is there a second one coming?
sindy said...
Mar. 12, 2014 at 1:45 pm
excellent story
sarah said...
Mar. 12, 2014 at 1:37 pm
excellent story
Jim623 said...
Mar. 11, 2014 at 11:40 am
Really cool story, wow, Suspenseful and makes you want to read more.
MegaSock said...
Mar. 6, 2014 at 6:25 pm
The title drew me in on this story. I recognized it was the same as the Rolling Stone's song (nice touch!). I like the questions the devil asks, despite all the answers he sees and knows. He doesn't know human emotion, or human prevail, or motives of regret or kindness that resulted from something so terrible. I lime how you left Norman to be this kind character, obviously showing remorse, while the devil watches and contemplates. Great job on the story!
Luela62 said...
Mar. 6, 2014 at 6:13 pm
Nice misdirection. This is a pretty awesome story. Looking forward to reading more of your writing.
Thalion said...
Mar. 6, 2014 at 2:30 pm
Fantastic writing. That's all I can say!
Sam B. said...
Mar. 6, 2014 at 1:00 pm
Wow, cool.
ShagunThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Mar. 6, 2014 at 9:15 am
very powerful and incredibly gripping, had me at the edge of my seat till the very end. Excellet work.
Susan S. said...
Mar. 5, 2014 at 5:07 pm
excellent writing
talbot13 said...
Mar. 5, 2014 at 3:06 pm
Really well written.
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