"Alright, now then; Once upon a time there was a knight named Nightmare, who had a powerful weapon called Soul Edge…"

"Speak not its name! It pains my ears to hear it!"

"Shut up. Now then, Nightmare had a hobby, which involved traveling the world causing mass mayhem and chaos."

"Why must you remind me of my regrets?"

"Shut up. Now, while it was general consensus that while Nightmare was probably the most hated person on Earth…"

"Oh, woe is me!"

"He was indefinitely cooler then the whiny, anxiety ridden wimp he was to become!"

Nightmare, or Siegfried, as he now preferred to be called, let out of sigh of despair while Astaroth tried his hardest not to give up and lob off his head and be done with it. He had stumbled across his former master in a bar, where he was selling laments and dirges for a dollar a piece. As it turned out, he had thrown away Soul Edge, and was now spending his time trying to 'struggle with his inner demons,' a cliché that made Astaroth want to throw up. It pained him to see one of the greatest evil minds the world had ever seen go to waste like this, to spend it's time regretting it's past actions, to attempt to become (Astaroth shuddered at the thought) a tragic hero. So Astaroth had taken the wretch out back and was attempting to get the Knight to stop this silliness.

"Alright, boy, up on your feet," he said as he hauled Siegfried up from the ground. "If you keep kneeling like that people are going to think you're looking for loose change."

"Yes, looking for money, like the dirty tramp I have become. And what fate could be more fitting, for one who was as wicked as I?"

"Shut up. There's nothing worse then a villain who 'learns the error of his ways.' Next you'll be falling in love with some one whose voice can attract blue jays, or wood peckers, or something."

Siegfried smiled and gazed at the sky. "Ah, but that I could. Then perhaps, she would cleanse my soul and I would know peace."

The giant rolled his eyes. "Oh boy, then you could knit little quilts, and put together bouquets, and drink straight honey."

"No, no, I would add sugar to it, and then drink it."

Astaroth slapped him. "Look, Nightmare, not only would that make you sick for days, it would also ruin your image for your fans as the heartless villain who shows no mercy."

Siegfried raised his hands in the air. "Fan, I have no fans! I have done not but ruin the lives of others!"

"EXACTLY!" Astaroth shouted. "You were a good villain! You robbed from the rich! You killed the poor! You kicked over trash cans! You burnt villages! You switched mayonnaise with glue! And then, after you came back from lunch, you would do it all over again!"

Siegfried gave a small cry of dismay. "Why must you torment me so? Forcing the memories of past evils on me?"

Astaroth shook his head. "What kind of a world is it that won't even let you have a good bad guy any more?"

"But I am a good bad guy."

"No, I don't mean a bad guy that is good, I mean a downright evil, twisted, conniving, heartless scoundrel!"

"Ah, that was I, long ago…"

"I swear, if you start doing that every time I finish a sentence, I'm going to punch you right in the mouth!"

"Oh, I'm sorry."



"Look, you need to go back to being evil again," Astaroth pleaded. "Think of the children!"

Siegfried looked perplexed. "Run that by me again?"

"If we're not careful, kids will never get to see a truly diabolical villain! All they will see is a bunch of whiners torn between there evil ways and a desire to be good! And do you know what that means?"

"A greater understanding of character development?"

"No, all it will lead to is monologues! Morning, day and night, all they will here is the 'villain' fighting with himself!"

"But it makes for a better, more intellectually stimulating story."

Astaroth slapped Siegfried on the head. "No, it makes for a boring wuss that no one can hate and thus loses any drive for the heroes to get anything done because the person who's SUPPOSED to be trying to foil the good guys is too busy sitting around feeling sorry for himself!

"Now, do you understand why it is so imperative that you go back to being evil?"

Siegfried looked out into space, contemplating this bit of information. "Well, I don't rightfully know. I mean, going around the world killing innocents with an all powerful weapon seems so…"

Astaroth pointed a warning finger at him. "No!"

"But if they can't fight back, it just seems so…"

"NO! NO!"

"And really, the whole affair just seems so…"

Astaroth grabbed Siegfried by the shoulders and shook him. "DON'T SAY IT!"


"AAAAAAAAAUUUUUGGGGGGHHH!!!" Astaroth screamed to the heavens, and punched Siegfried in the face. "Never, EVER use that word! It is strictly reserved for fancy pants heroes as an attempt to rile up their enemy!"

Siegfried spat out a tooth. "Ow, that really hurt!"

"Good! The situation is worse than I thought. We'll have to get you back to normal now, or it'll be too late." Astaroth looked around for something to aid him. "Alright, we'll start off slowly. Go and step on that flower."

Siegfried grimaced. "But it's so pretty and wholesome."

"It's a bloody flower."

"But it's public domain."

"Go step on it."

"But I…"

Without warning, Astaroth pushed Siegfried forward, causing him to trample the flower flat. A look of pain shot across his face at the horrible crime he had committed, yet slowly, it vanished into a small smile. "Hey, that was kind of…fun." Suddenly, his body became rigid, his pupils dilated, and ever so slowly, his eyebrows started to furrow. A sneer emerged on his face, his back started to bend slightly, and without warning he shouted out, "SOULS!"

Astaroth smiled. "Ah, I see we're feeling better already."

Nightmare looked around him wildly. "Armour… need…. Armour!" Dashing into the nearest Smithy, he punched the blacksmith in the face, stole a full suit of armour, took all the money out of the till, wrote 'Nightmare was here' on the wall in permanent ink, and returned to Astaroth. Finally, his eyes resumed their usual red tint. "Hey, Astaroth, let's go make some wannabe warrior eat his own feet!"

Astaroth nodded in consent, pleased that once again, all was right with the world.