Authors’ Commentary on “The Dark Arts”

Lawyers in Hell Authors’ Commentary on
»The Dark Arts,«
 a story in Lawyers in Hell

I have always been attracted to writing about the dark side of Life; everything in this world is in balance between light and dark although the dark is ignored or made to be a taboo matter. For me, however, I see it as a pleasing challenge for I respect it for what it is.

When I was invited to write a story for Lawyers in Hell, I considered it to be quite the honour, for although the story would be set in a shared universe, the possibilities were still endless.

Lawyers in Hell Hell, from what I have read thus far, is a strange and wondrous place, filled with immediate tortures reserved for the blackest of souls and yet I found it to be more. Hell is a vicious cycle involving repeated pasts with a shred of possible change all the while knowing that there is no hope.

That was one of the reasons why I used Clarence Darrow in my story; to me, I wanted someone who would be the least likely to wound up in Hell and yet sadly resign himself to his present eternal state knowing that there was no chance of ever leaving. I also used Darrow because he was an agnostic; what better place to send him than to a place that he once thought did not exist? What better torture and revelation of the dark side than to inject him into a plane where everyone has a place and everything has a fatal price?

Kimberley RichardsonPenemue, the fallen angel who introduced ink and paper to Mankind and cured their “stupidity”, was used primarily as a counterpoint to Darrow’s stoic nature. I wanted to use someone who thought of his station as advancement, a setting himself apart from the rest because he is worthy and arrogant enough to do so.

Penemue, then, is Darrow’s dark side, a shadow of the shred of dignity Darrow still holds in Lost Angeles. The idea of suing the fallen angel of ink and paper on the grounds of plagiarism seemed to be both a joke in everyone else’s eyes except for the one bringing the suit forward and yet a spoke in the vicious cycle of Hellish life. D

arrow knows that his client is innocent and yet there is a shred of wonder; this is Hell after all, a place where one can get away with anything . . . and still pay a horrible price for it.
The Dark Arts, © Kimberley Richardson; Perseid Publishing, 2011
2011© Lawyers in Hell (Janet Morris), 2011, all rights reserved

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