Devil Tricks Quotes

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La plus belle des ruses du diable est de vous persuader qu'il n'existe pas." ("The devil's finest trick is to persuade you that he does not exist.")
Charles Baudelaire (Paris Spleen)
Son, the greatest trick the Devil pulled was convincing the world there was only one of him.
David Wong (John Dies at the End (John Dies at the End #1))
Someone who smiles too much with you can sometime frown too much with you at your back.
Michael Bassey Johnson
Buy a gift for a dog, and you'll be amazed at the way it will dance and swerve its tail, but if don't have anything to offer to it, it won't even recognize your arrival; such are the attributes of fake friends.
Michael Bassey Johnson
I believe the greatest trick of the devil is not to get us into some sort of evil but rather have us wasting time. This is why the devil tries so hard to get Christians to be religious. If he can sink a man's mind into habit, he will prevent his heart from engaging God. I was into habit.
Donald Miller
The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist”—Charles Baudelaire “The second greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he is the good guy”—Ken Ammi
Charles Baudelaire
This is what it's all been about with you," he said in an even tone. "All the fear, all the running. The nightmares." When she nodded, he said, "You called him the devil." "He is." What are you thinking, Scot? "But you... married him?" MacRieve's disgusted with me. "Basically? Yes." "Ceremony and everything?" She swallowed. "He tricked me into it. I-I was only sixteen." A muscle ticked in his cheek and his irises grew pale. "Then know this..." She stopped breathing. "Lass, I'm about to make you a widow--
Kresley Cole (Pleasure of a Dark Prince (Immortals After Dark, #8))
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist.
Christopher McQuarrie (Usual Suspects)
The devil's finest trick is to persuade you that he does not exist.
Charles Baudelaire (Paris Spleen)
Do you know what I think about crying? I think some people have to learn to do it. But once you learn, once you know how to really cry, there's nothing quite like it. I feel sorry for those who don't know the trick. It's like whistling or singing.
Anne Rice (Memnoch the Devil (The Vampire Chronicles, #5))
Freddie once told me that I was the worst kind of stubborn-because I wasn't stubborn at all. I was patient. Patient, but determined. A stubborn person could be distracted, or tricked. But not me. I just held on and on and on, never giving up until I got my way, long after everyone else stopped caring.
April Genevieve Tucholke (Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea (Between, #1))
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.
Steve Cavanagh (Thirteen (Eddie Flynn, #4))
So, you got QVC? (Simi) Afraid not, sweetie. (Astrid) You got Soap Net? (Zarek shook his head.) You got any TV? (Simi) Sorry. (Zarek) Are you kidding? You boring people. A demon needs her cable. Akri done tricked me. He didn’t tell me I’d have to go without cable. (Simi)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dance with the Devil (Dark-Hunter, #3))
It doesn't really matter if you are left behind the back, but what matters is your capacity to pull and push everyone by your way to get to the front.
Michael Bassey Johnson
I only met Mad Sweeney twice, alive," he said. "The first time I thought he was a world-class jerk with the devil in him. The second time I thought he was a major fuckup and I gave him the money to kill himself. He showed me a coin trick I don't remember how to do, gave me some bruises, and claimed he was a leprechaun. Rest in peace, Mad Sweeney.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
He’s the Devil, Zahra. Well, that explains why Eve fell for his tricks. If the Devil looked half as good as Rowan, I’d eat the damn apple, too. Screw the consequences.
Lauren Asher (The Fine Print (Dreamland Billionaires, #1))
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was not convincing the world that he didn’t exist; the greatest trick he ever pulled was making us believe we have free will.
Abhaidev (The Meaninglessness of Meaning)
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing Christians that oppression is godly. Their God ordained some people, simply because of their sex or skin color (or both), as belonging under the power of other people.
Beth Allison Barr (The Making of Biblical Womanhood: How the Subjugation of Women Became Gospel Truth)
Nothing can save you from hate, empty all your treasures and give it to people and one out of the multitudes will curse you, so live your life to please yourself and not others.
Michael Bassey Johnson
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he was evil.
Edmund Carver
The great trick of the devil is to make you want to see him. But it is only when you see him that you fear him. And by then, it is too late.
Patrick Ness (And the Ocean Was Our Sky)
The devil tricked you to trigger the apocalypse, and then he stuck a knife through your chest, but I swear it was out of love.
J.M. Darhower (Reignite (Extinguish, #2))
When the devil wants to punish his worshippers, he uses the trick of karma.
Michael Bassey Johnson
It's better to be fooled than to be suspicious - that the confidence trick is the work of man, but the want-of-confidence trick is the work of the devil.
E.M. Forster (Howards End: Case Studies in Contemporary Criticism)
A wise man once said the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was to convince the world he was someone else…
Cameron Jace (The Grimm Diaries Prequels 7- 10)
I think the devil has tricked us into thinking so much of biblical theology is story fit for kids.
Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality (Paperback))
No tricks, Christian. I don't play that way when I play for keeps." "No one ever said we were playing for keeps." "We? I hadn't realized you'd agreed to play at all, beautiful." Triumph gleamed in Sable's eyes.
Megan Derr (Dance with the Devil (Dance with the Devil, #1))
In the words of the great Monsieur Baudelaire, 'The greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing the world he doesn't exist.
Alys Arden (The Casquette Girls (The Casquette Girls, #1))
They're the devil's work, and I don't sin. Much. Today. Well, since last night. Hail Mary full of grace...
Amo Jones (Flip Trick)
He was laughing under his breath, like a cruel wolf, as he leaned over to light his last cigarette. Books play that kind of trick, he thought. And everyone gets the devil he deserves.
Arturo Pérez-Reverte
Marya put down her fork. “Why are you doing this, Koschei? I have had lovers before. You have, too. Remember Marina? The rusalka? She and I swam together every morning. We raced the salmon. You called us your little sharks.” The Tsar of Life held his knife so tightly Marya could see his knucklebones bulging. “Were any of them called Ivan? Were any of them human boys all sticky with their own innocence? I know you. I know you because you are like me, as much like me as two spoons nested in each other.” Her husband leaned close to her, the candlelight sparking in his dark, shaggy hair. “When you steal them, they mean so much more, Marousha. Trust me. I know. What did I do wrong? Was I boring? Did I ignore you? Did I not give you enough pretty dresses? Enough emeralds? I’m sure I have more, somewhere.” Marya lifted her hand and laid it on her husband’s cheek. With a blinking quickness, she drove her nails deep into his face. “Don’t you dare speak to me like that. I have worn nothing but blood and death for years. I have fought all your battles for you, just as you asked me. I have learned all the tricks you said I must learn. I have learned not to cry when I strangle a man. I have learned to lay my finger aside my nose and disappear. I have learned to watch everything die. I am not a little girl anymore, dazzled by your magic. It is my magic, now, too. And if I have watched all my soldiers die in front of me, if I have only been saved by my rifle and my own hands, if I have drunk more blood than water for weeks, then I take the human boy who stumbled into my tent and hold him between my legs until I stop screaming, you will not punish me for it. Are we not chyerti? Are we not devils? I will not even hear your punishment, old man.
Catherynne M. Valente (Deathless)
The devil may be nasty, but he doesn't perform tricks." His smile was temptation incarnate. "He bargains.
Kerri Maniscalco (Kingdom of the Cursed (Kingdom of the Wicked, #2))
never believed in demons or monsters lurking under my bed. But lately I’ve started to wonder if evil hasn’t in fact infiltrated this world, slithering streets and sidewalks, wearing what- ever disguise suits its immediate purpose. When a choirboy is molested, is it by the devil in a priest costume? Or does Satan play a more clever game to get what he wants? To win the contest, accomplish his goals, might the prince of hatred mask himself as love?
Ellen Hopkins (Tricks)
They say that the devils greatest trick was convincing man that he didn’t exist but their wrong. You are the devils greatest trick. Your very name is a trick. You are no Angel but a demon from hell sent to test us and while the men have failed I will not. Do you understand, I will not. I see you for what you are so go back to hell because I will not yield another member of my family to you.
Angelique Jones (The Matriarchs (The Family #6))
I won't be stuck in traffic 'til I see how rugged my path is And right now I'm loving how fast my troubles are fasting No they don't bother me oh realizing I'm psychopathic A wild beast, baby I'm gladly running after Yes a thing called peace outlasting any madness The devil fears me oh he's feeling Like a fragment of a fraction No he won't come near me 'Cause his hat trick's out of practice
Criss Jami (Venus in Arms)
They say the greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was to make people stop believing in him,
Mick Herron (Dead Lions (Slough House, #2))
The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist,
Jeaniene Frost (Twice Tempted (Night Prince, #2))
It’s better to be fooled than to be suspicious’—that the confidence trick is the work of man, but the want-of-confidence trick is the work of the devil.
E.M. Forster (Howards End)
One of the crafty tricks Satan plays is to guide a person safely on the wrong path. When your safety is the priority, you may be on the wrong path but may not know.
Israelmore Ayivor (Daily Drive 365)
I believe that the greatest trick of the devil is not to get us into some sort of evil but rather have us wasting time. This is why the devil tries so hard to get Christians to be religious. If he can sink a man’s mind into habit, he will prevent his heart from engaging God.
Donald Miller (Miller 3 in 1: Blue Like Jazz, Through Painted Deserts, Searching for God)
The one plus side to demonic infestation is that children cannot be harmed by a demon. The sanctified aura of a child somehow repels the demon and they can only oppress them if the parent makes a contract allowing them to do so. Because they can be very clever in tricking people into agreeing to additional contracts, it is important to never converse with a demon. Either call in a priest or move out as soon as possible.
Alexei Maxim Russell (The New Homeowner's Guide to House Spirits)
I have become intoxicated again. You are such a potent wine, my friend. To escape your withdrawal effects, tomorrow I will drink in excess. Alas, why make me love? I was aware, conscious, and sensible before. I am ill by cause of this illusion. The devil plays tricks on me more and more. I was a harp you immaculately plucked at will. Your score, the nightingale song within notes composed to imprison and bear me wings. Oh, if only they could hear how it sings! I am now beyond parched. My strings left untouched. You are no longer an oasis, my friend, but a mirage soon coming to an end.
Kamand Kojouri
Imagine living each day and not being able to trust your own mind. Imagine having it lie to you, trick you, tell you you’re worthless or that the world would be better off without you in it. It would be like… like always hearing an awful radio playing inside your head, one that you can’t seem to turn off.
Libba Bray (Before the Devil Breaks You (The Diviners, #3))
You remember how he would trust strangers, and if they fooled him he would say: ‘It’s better to be fooled than to be suspicious’—that the confidence trick is the work of man, but the want-of-confidence trick is the work of the devil.
E.M. Forster (Howards End)
Not a soul But felt a fever of the mad, and play'd Some tricks of desperation; all but mariners Plung'd in the foaming brine, and quit the vessel; Then all afire with me the King's son Ferdinand With hair up staring ( then like reeds, not hair) Was the first man that leap'd; cried Hell is empty, And all the devils are here.
William Shakespeare (The Tempest)
The Devil’s greatest trick isn’t getting you to think he doesn’t exist. Quite the reverse. It’s getting you to think he’s God and that you must obey him without question. Devil worshippers aren’t a rare exception in our world – they’re the norm.
Adam Weishaupt (Abraham: The World's First Psychopath (The Anti-Christian Series Book 5))
He is the Devil. Zahra. Well, that explains why Eve fell for his tricks
Lauren Asher (The Fine Print (Dreamland Billionaires, #1))
The devil will try any trick to keep God’s people out of spiritual warfare... he has everything to gain by it.
Frank Hammond (Pigs in the Parlor: The Practical Guide to Deliverance)
Upon learning of Sebastian’s success with the commissioner, Cam Rohan remarked admiringly, “That was a spruce trick, my lord. I’m beginning to think you can persuade anyone to do nearly anything.” Sebastian grinned and glanced at Evie, who was sitting nearby. “I should think Lady St. Vincent is proof of that,” he said.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Winter (Wallflowers, #3))
I’m a natural salesman. I sold my soul to the devil. I’m so shrewd that I got pennies on the dollar for it. Ha! Wait, a buyer who gets pennies on the dollar is the clever one in the deal. Damn it! Lucifer tricked me!
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
In cases of organized and multi-perpetrator abuse when the abuse occurs in the context of rituals and ceremonies, some elements of the experience may have been staged specifically with the intention of encouraging the disbelief of others if the victim were to report the crime. For example, someone reporting such a crime may mention that the devil was present, or that someone well-known was there, or that acts of magic were performed. These were tricks and deceptions by the abusers-often experienced by the victims after being given medication or hallucinogenic drugs - that render the account unbelievable, make the witness sound unreliable, and protect the perpetrators. (page 120, Chapter 9, Some clinical implications of believing or not believing the patient)
Graeme Galton (Forensic Aspects of Dissociative Identity Disorder (Forensic Psychotherapy Monograph Series))
Pressed into the gray scum of the tub, our boot prints looked like those fossil feet frozen in rocks that my crazy cousins said the Devil had planted all over the world to trick people into believing that we came from frog shit and monkeys.
Donald Ray Pollock (Knockemstiff)
But Golden's dark form in the doorway had imprinted something new and painful on the hard plates of her chest: that old devil, hope. The kind of hope that abandons you in your worst moments and is suddenly there again, weeks later, trailing you like the stubborn, slinking dog who will not take no for an answer. The kind of greedy hope that tricks you into believing that at least some of the things taken from you might be restored, that after everything, you might find your way back to something like happiness.
Brady Udall (The Lonely Polygamist)
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.”—from the motion picture screenplay The Usual Suspects, by Christopher McQuarrie
Steve Cavanagh (Thirteen (Eddie Flynn #4))
Whiteness embodies Charles Baudelaire’s admonition that “the loveliest trick of the Devil is to persuade you that he does not exist.
Robin DiAngelo (White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism)
You don’t escape from Hell without learning some of the devil’s tricks.
Sansa Rayne (Erased)
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing Christians that oppression is godly.
Beth Allison Barr (The Making of Biblical Womanhood: How the Subjugation of Women Became Gospel Truth)
Emotions are but the tricks of the devil, sent to tempt us into doubt and hesitation, and obscure the deeds committed, whether good or ill.
Iain Pears (An Instance of the Fingerpost)
BegulationywctioThe best trick the devil can perform is to trick you into thinking there is no devil; if there's no devil, then there's no hell, and if there's no hell, then there are no consequenses.
C.S. Rutkey
BOOK BEAUTY Here's the end of that story about the old woman who wanted to lure a man with strange cosmetics. She made a paste of pages from the Qur'an to fill the deep creases on her face and neck with. This is not about an old woman, dear reader. It's about you, or anyone who tries to use books to make themselves attractive. There she is, sticking scripture, thick with saliva, on her face. Of course, the bits keep falling off. "The devil," she yells, and he appears! "This is a trick I've never seen. You don't need me. You are yourself a troop of demons!" So people steal inspired words to get compliments. Don't bother. Death comes and all talking, stolen or not, stops. Pity anyone unfamiliar with silence when that happens. Polish your heart with mediation and quietness. Let the inner life grow generous and handsome like Joseph. Zuleika did that and her "old woman's spring cold snap" turned to mid-July. Dry lips wet from within. Ink is not rouge. Let language lie bygone. Now is where love breathes.
Rumi (Jalal ad-Din Muhammad ar-Rumi) (The Soul of Rumi: A New Collection of Ecstatic Poems)
She was working as a waitress in a cocktail bar when she decided to summon the devil and sell her soul for fame. As you do. Hell, we’ve all been there… Of course, things didn’t go according to plan. Never have, never will…
G.H. Finn (How to Trick the Devil)
I don't want these. They're mud and they've got no color. Or at least the color is different from what I'm used to. Take any American city, in autumn, or in winter, when the light makes the colors dance and flow, and look at it from a distant hill or from a boat in the bay or on the river, and you will see in any section of the view far better paintings than in this lentil soup that you people have to pedigree in order to love. I may be a thief, but I know color when I see it in the flash of heaven or in the Devil's opposing tricks, and I know mud. Mr. Knoedler, you needn't worry about your paintings anymore. I'm not going to steal them. I don't like them. Sincerely yours, P. Soames
Mark Helprin (Winter's Tale)
But that’s precisely the devil’s trick,’ Robin insisted. ‘This is how colonialism works. It convinces us that the fallout from resistance is entirely our fault, that the immoral choice is resistance itself rather than the circumstances that demanded it.
R.F. Kuang (Babel, or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators' Revolution)
Our world is full of submissive activities. Shopping is submissive. You wander around buying the things the controllers have placed in front of you. Watching TV is submissive. You watch fictional lives rather than live your own life. Playing video games is submissive. You sit there shooting up the world (in virtual reality), while having no impact at all on actual reality. It’s easy to be a virtual hero, hard to be a real one. One involves no work, and the other is as hard as it gets. Video games are an avoidance of the real world. Voting is submissive too – you delegate your authority to one of the puppets of the controllers. Dominants are active, not passive. They DO. They ACT. They MOVE. They CHOOSE. They DECIDE. They are NOT CONTROLLED by the system. They are FREE. So, what are you?
Adam Weishaupt (Christianity: The Devil's Greatest Trick (The Anti-Christian Series Book 4))
But whiteness goes even one better: it is a category of identity that is most useful when its very existence is denied. That’s its twisted genius. Whiteness embodies Charles Baudelaire’s admonition that “the loveliest trick of the Devil is to persuade you that he does not exist.
Robin DiAngelo (White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism)
MY MOTHER, WHO lived and died by superstitions, used to make us say together before we went on a trip: We’re not going anywhere. It was meant to trick the Devil. I can’t say I believe in that kind of thing, but then again, I didn’t say it before I left home, and look at where that got me.
Jodi Picoult (The Book of Two Ways)
Psalm 111:10. The fear of God. The awe and dread of all that spooky action at a distance. And the Devil was understood to be less an adversary than a particularly evil employee of God. He was that bastard in the Human Resources Department who looks for ways to screw with your life. Satan was real. And he wandered around each day with an eye out for opportunities to tempt ordinary people into sinning. And God allowed it. There was presumably a housing crisis in Heaven or something, and he let Satan roam the earth, tricking people out of their renting privileges in the afterlife.
Warren Ellis (CUNNING PLANS: Talks By Warren Ellis)
Before you work with me you must know that I am an atheist and I believe in neither supreme powers of any God or the trickery of the Devil, I am student of the criminal psychology and believe that behind every murder there is psychopath at work with some insidious agenda at play and motive unknown to human mind.
Adhish Mazumder
if you’ll let me hijack your feed for one second, I think we could help each other. The voice was chemical-sweet, carcinogenic, a pool of oily promise cooking in a silver spoon. Its silky bravado reminded Deirdre of stories about devils and demons, about dark fae spirits feasting on firstborn children after a handshake and a trick.
S.R. Hughes (The War Beneath)
Who knows what new devils we might create? And so now I tell you my story. Now is the time. For rumours swirl and oceans stir and in that maelstrom, I fear, devils will rise. Are rising. Have risen. The great trick of the devil is to make you want to see him. But it is only when you see him that you fear him. And by then, it is too late.
Patrick Ness (And the Ocean Was Our Sky)
You are the proximate cause,’ insisted Professor Chakravarti. ‘You can make it stop.’ ‘But that’s precisely the devil’s trick,’ Robin insisted. ‘This is how colonialism works. It convinces us that the fallout from resistance is entirely our fault, that the immoral choice is resistance itself rather than the circumstances that demanded it.
R.F. Kuang (Babel, or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators' Revolution)
I pray that the world never runs out of dragons. I say that in all sincerity, though I have played a part in the death of one great wyrm. For the dragon is the quintessential enemy, the greatest foe, the unconquerable epitome of devastation. The dragon, above all other creatures, even the demons and the devils, evokes images of dark grandeur, of the greatest beast curled asleep on the greatest treasure hoard. They are the ultimate test of the hero and the ultimate fright of the child. They are older than the elves and more akin to the earth than the dwarves. The great dragons are the preternatural beast, the basic element of the beast, that darkest part of our imagination. The wizards cannot tell you of their origin, though they believe that a great wizard, a god of wizards, must have played some role in the first spawning of the beast. The elves, with their long fables explaining the creation of every aspect of the world, have many ancient tales concerning the origin of the dragons, but they admit, privately, that they really have no idea of how the dragons came to be. My own belief is more simple, and yet, more complicated by far. I believe that dragons appeared in the world immediately after the spawning of the first reasoning race. I do not credit any god of wizards with their creation, but rather, the most basic imagination wrought of unseen fears, of those first reasoning mortals. We make the dragons as we make the gods, because we need them, because, somewhere deep in our hearts, we recognize that a world without them is a world not worth living in. There are so many people in the land who want an answer, a definitive answer, for everything in life, and even for everything after life. They study and they test, and because those few find the answers for some simple questions, they assume that there are answers to be had for every question. What was the world like before there were people? Was there nothing but darkness before the sun and the stars? Was there anything at all? What were we, each of us, before we were born? And what, most importantly of all, shall we be after we die? Out of compassion, I hope that those questioners never find that which they seek. One self-proclaimed prophet came through Ten-Towns denying the possibility of an afterlife, claiming that those people who had died and were raised by priests, had, in fact, never died, and that their claims of experiences beyond the grave were an elaborate trick played on them by their own hearts, a ruse to ease the path to nothingness. For that is all there was, he said, an emptiness, a nothingness. Never in my life have I ever heard one begging so desperately for someone to prove him wrong. This is kind of what I believe right now… although, I do not want to be proved wrong… For what are we left with if there remains no mystery? What hope might we find if we know all of the answers? What is it within us, then, that so desperately wants to deny magic and to unravel mystery? Fear, I presume, based on the many uncertainties of life and the greatest uncertainty of death. Put those fears aside, I say, and live free of them, for if we just step back and watch the truth of the world, we will find that there is indeed magic all about us, unexplainable by numbers and formulas. What is the passion evoked by the stirring speech of the commander before the desperate battle, if not magic? What is the peace that an infant might know in its mother’s arms, if not magic? What is love, if not magic? No, I would not want to live in a world without dragons, as I would not want to live in a world without magic, for that is a world without mystery, and that is a world without faith. And that, I fear, for any reasoning, conscious being, would be the cruelest trick of all. -Drizzt Do’Urden
R.A. Salvatore (Streams of Silver (Forgotten Realms: Icewind Dale, #2; Legend of Drizzt, #5))
What a World do we inhabit! where there is not only with us a great Roaring-Lyon-Devil daily seeking whom of us he may devour, and innumerable Millions of lesser Devils hovering in the whole Atmosphere over us, nay, and for ought we know, other Millions always invisibly moving about us, and perhaps in us, or at least in many of us; but that have, besides all these, a vast many counterfeit Hocus Pocus Devils; human Devils, who are visible among us, of our own Species and Fraternity, conversing with us upon all Occasions; who like Mountebanks set up their Stages in every Town, chat with us at every Tea-Table, converse with us in every Coffee-House, and impudently tell us to our Faces that they are Devils, boast of it, and use a thousand Tricks and Arts to make us believe it too, and that too often with Success.
Daniel Defoe (The History of the Devil, as Well Ancient as Modern: In Two Parts)
More strange than true. I never may believe These antique fables, nor these fairy toys. Lovers and madmen have such seething brains, Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend More than cool reason ever comprehends. The lunatic, the lover, and the poet Are of imagination all compact. One sees more devils than vast hell can hold: That is the madman. The lover, all as frantic, Sees Helen’s beauty in a brow of Egypt. The poet’s eye, in a fine frenzy rolling, Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven, And as imagination bodies forth The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen Turns them to shapes, and gives to airy nothing A local habitation and a name. Such tricks hath strong imagination That if it would but apprehend some joy It comprehends some bringer of that joy; Or in the night, imagining some fear, How easy is a bush supposed a bear!
William Shakespeare (A Midsummer Night’s Dream)
Don’t be fooled by clever hands, sir” the Sunlight Man said. He’d be lying with the back of his head on his hands, as he always lay. “Entertainment’s all very well, but the world is serious. It’s exceedingly amusing, when you think about it: nothing in life is as startling or shocking or mysterious as a good magician’s trick. That’s what makes stagecraft deadly. Listen closely, friend. You see great marvels performed on the stage - the lady sawed in half, the fat man supported by empty air, the Hindu vanishing with the folding of a cloth - and the subtlest of poisons drifts into your brain: you think the earth dead because the sky is full of spirits, you think the hall drab because the stage is adazzle with dimestore gilt. So King Lear rages, and the audience grows meek, and tomorrow, in the gray of old groceries, the housewife will weep for Cordelia and despair for herself. They weren’t fools, those old sages who called all art the Devil’s work. It eats the soul.
John Gardner (The Sunlight Dialogues (New Directions Paperbook))
It’s all either kammerjunker or general. All that’s best in the world, all of it goes either to kammerjunkers or generals. You find a poor treasure for yourself, hope to reach out your hand to it—a kammerjunker or a general plucks it away from you. Devil take it! I wish I could become a general myself: not so as to get her hand and the rest of it, no, I want to be a general simply to see how they’ll fawn and perform all those various courtly tricks and equivocations, and then to tell them I spit on them both.
Nikolai Gogol (The Collected Tales of Nikolai Gogol (Vintage Classics))
Lucifer endears himself to us only as the Lord of Lies, for in this role he is most convincing as a character, which is to say, as a fiction that has been so fully realized that he misguides us with a false feeling of our own reality because we are the ones who made him: he is subordinate to us, especially in the art of lying. For the acephalics among us who have said that the Devil’s greatest trick was convincing the world that he did not exist, it must be said back: if he did not exist, then neither would we.
Thomas Ligotti (The Conspiracy Against the Human Race)
And yet, and yet; it is a strange dance that the Fool must learn as he encounters the Devil on his path. Like the serpent who offered Eve the fruit of knowledge, or Samuel who seduced Lilith away from paradise, all knowledge comes from darkness, and so we are drawn towards it. But darkness and evil are not the same thing. We go to the darkness willingly, so we can, as Cormac McCarthy wrote, “learn how to carry the fire”, but sojourn too long and we open the door to forces we may not be able to pry ourselves from. Indifference, doubt and scepticism form, as Kelly Braffet describes, the “logic that the Devil likes most”, to trap us into the conviction not just of the absence of evil, but more cynically, the non-existence of virtue. Thomas Aquinas rather beautifully defined sloth as "sorrow about spiritual good", for perhaps it is not that “the greatest trick the devil ever pulled is to convince the world that he doesn’t exist” (Baudelaire), but rather the far superior and more hellish of hoaxes, that God doesn’t either.
Dr Aisling O'Donnell (THE MAP: Archetypes of the Major Arcana)
As far back as 1563 the courageous Dutch physician Johannes Wier published his masterwork, De Praestigiis Daemonum (On the Delusions About Demons) in which he states that the collective and voluntary self-accusation of older women through which they exposed themselves to torture and death by their inquisitors was in itself an act inspired by the devil, a trick of demons, whose aim it was to doom not only the innocent women but also their reckless judges. Wier was the first medical man to introduce what became the psychiatric concept of DELUSION and mental blindness. Wherever his book had influence, the persecution of witches ceased, in some countries more than one hundred and fifty years before it was finally brought to an end throughout the civilized world. His work and his insights became one of the main instruments for fighting the witch delusion and physical torture (Baschwitz). Wier realized even then that witches were scapegoats for the inner confusion and desperation of their judges and of the “Zeitgeist” in general.
Joost A.M. Meerloo (The Rape of the Mind: The Psychology of Thought Control, Menticide, and Brainwashing)
Driving me nuts, bolts, screws I got the blues from paying dues For programmed news of honeycoated lies Your eyes can't believe That weave the Devil's magic with the latest gadget From the Mean Machine A'running the Same Game with Another Name Down in your brain, blowing your mind Stealing your time, smooth and slick With the latest trick to get rich quick From nonsense at your mind's expense As your mind digs the scene From the Mean Machine Designed to drive your brain insane From "Mean Machine" by the Last Poets
Jalal Mansur Nuriddin
Not my mother. Just a trick. Never deal with the devil—that much he knew. Live like a king. Right. The king of a ruined world. The king of nothing. But down here, he was alive. An agent of chaos. Caca grande. The shit in the Master’s soup. Gus’s reverie was interrupted by footfalls in the tunnels. He went to the door and saw artificial light coming around the corner. Fet came first, Goodweather behind him. Gus had seen Fet a month or two before, but the doctor he had not seen in quite some time. Goodweather looked the worst he’d
Guillermo del Toro (The Night Eternal (The Strain Trilogy, #3))
Without warning, a smooth voice spoke next to her ear- a woman's voice with an American accent. "You're nothing but a skinny, awkward child, just as he described. He's visited me since the wedding, you know. He and I have laughed together over your juvenile infatuation with him. You bore him senseless." Pandora turned and found herself confronted by Mrs. Nola Black. The woman was breathtaking, her features creamy-skinned and flawless, her eyes deep and dark under brows so perfectly groomed and delineated, they looked like thin strips of velvet. Although Mrs. Black was approximately the same height as Pandora, her figure was a remarkable hourglass shape, with a waist so small one could have buckled a cat's collar around it. "That's nothing but bitchful thinking," Pandora said calmly. "He hasn't visited you, or he would have told me." Mrs. Black was clearly "picking for a fight," as Winterborne would have put it. "He'll never be faithful to you. Everyone knows you're a peculiar girl who tricked him into marriage. He appreciates novelty, to be sure, but it will wear off, and then he'll send you packing to some remote country house." Pandora was filled with a confusing mixture of feelings. Jealousy, because this woman had known Gabriel intimately, and had meant something to him... and antagonism, but also a stirring of pity, because there was something wounded in the biting darkness of her eyes. Behind the stunning façade, she was a savagely unhappy woman. "I'm sure you think that's what I should fear," Pandora said, "but I actually don't worry about that at all. I didn't trick him, by the way." She paused before adding, "I'll admit to being peculiar. But he seems to like that.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Spring (The Ravenels, #3))
Della sank down beside the creek, waiting for the flash of white fur that would herald Tidda's arrival. The first time she'd come across Tidda she'd been no more than a joey hardly big enough to be out of her mother's pouch. Perhaps because she was different, with her strange lack of color and red eyes, the mob had rejected her. Charity reckoned it was the sign of the devil, a punishment or a curse from the Darkinjung ancestral spirits. That was nothing but a load of rubbish. Tidda was more beautiful than most because of the strange trick natures had played upon her.
Tea Cooper (The Woman in the Green Dress)
She squints into the shadows between the trees, but there is no shape, no god to be found—only that voice, close as a breath against her cheek. “Adeline, Adeline,” it says, mocking, “… they are calling for you.” She turns again, finding nothing but deep shadow. “Show yourself,” she orders, her own voice sharp and brittle as a stick. Something brushes her shoulder, grazes her wrist, drapes itself around her like a lover. Adeline swallows. “What are you?” The shadow’s touch withdraws. “What am I?” it asks, an edge of humor in that velvet tone. “That depends on what you believe.” The voice splits, doubles, rattling through tree limbs and snaking over moss, folding over on itself until it is everywhere. “So tell me—tell me—tell me,” it echoes. “Am I the devil—the devil—or the dark—dark—dark? Am I a monster—monster—or a god—god—god—or…” The shadows in the woods begin to pull together, drawn like storm clouds. But when they settle, the edges are no longer wisps of smoke, but hard lines, the shape of a man, made firm by the light of the village lanterns at his back. “Or am I this?” The voice spills from a perfect pair of lips, a shadow revealing emerald eyes that dance below black brows, black hair that curls across his forehead, framing a face Adeline knows too well. One that she has conjured up a thousand times, in pencil and charcoal and dream. It is the stranger. Her stranger. She knows it is a trick, a shadow parading as a man, but the sight of him still robs her breath. The darkness looks down at his shape, seeing himself as if for the first time, and seems to approve. “Ah, so the girl believes in something after all.” Those green eyes lift. “Well now,” he says, “you have called, and I have come.” Never pray to the gods that answer after dark.
V.E. Schwab (The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue)
Since we’re all here in hell-on-earth, where the devil and his children run everything that is organized, it makes sense that the children of the devil would trick us into worshiping their asshole god. But before the God of love makes the scene, it will be important somehow to help His children—the children of love—have their eyes opened to who this cool fucker is who will be coming to befriend them on the day known in the Bible as the ‘Great and Dreadful Day of the Lord’ (great for His children; dreadful for the assholes)—which is also known in the parable of the wheat and tares as ‘the harvest.
Jon Krakauer (Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith)
The magician isn’t just performing sleights-of-hand but is also guiding our thinking by what’s called “magician’s patter.” The magician explains what’s happening. Of course, the magician isn’t saying what’s really happening, but the magician is using words and body language to trick our minds and make us think something is happening when it isn’t happening. In the same way, the devil, the culture, and our sinful flesh work to influence the way we interpret our experiences. Some of the tricks are extremely effective. Some of the tricks deliberately manipulate us. Other tricks are just natural deceptions.
Petros Scientia (Exposing the REAL Creation-Evolution Debate: The Absolute Proof of the Biblical Account (Real Faith & Reason Library Book 4))
At the moment—March 1893—the greatest inconvenience confronting Holmes was his lack of help. He needed a new secretary. There was no shortage of women seeking work, for the fair had drawn legions of them to Chicago. At the nearby Normal School, for example, the number of women applying to become teacher trainees was said to be many times the usual. Rather, the trick lay in choosing a woman of the correct sensibility. Candidates would need a degree of stenographic and typewriting skill, but what he most looked for and was so very adept at sensing was that alluring amalgam of isolation, weakness, and need.
Erik Larson (The Devil in the White City)
Here are seven angels, one with peacock feathers for wings and a crown, but no devil. And here also is God, behind it all, who created both Himself and them, whereby everything else was created. Yet there are other things as well, you must remember—things which have always been, which fools without true religion sometimes choose to worship, or trick themselves into worshipping. Small gods for small minds, trapped in small places. And while these creatures' scope is narrow, as with all half-made things, their reach can be long, long . . . just so long as their names are still known in this world, so they may hear them whispered somewhere, recognize themselves, and come calling. . . .
Gemma Files (Experimental Film)
Sara hadn’t needed a battlefield to teach her that lesson. Her entire life had been spent in study of men. Not from love or admiration, as was the proper way for a woman, but from fear. Men were dangerous. They were fickle of mood, liable to lash out when disappointed, and they were frequently disappointed – most often by their own shortcomings, though only a fool would tell them as much. ‘If you don’t think a devil’s prowling this boat, what’s responsible for that mark on the sail?’ prodded Arent. ‘I reckon one of the crew’s got hold of the story and is playing tricks on his betters.’ Drecht flung his hand towards the waist of the ship. By the reaching flame of the running light, Sara could just about see the crew
Stuart Turton (The Devil and the Dark Water)
There are in the music of the violin— if one does not see the instrument itself, and so cannot relate what one hears to its form, which modifies the tone— accents so closely akin to those of certain contralto voices that one has the illusion that a singer has taken her place amid the orchestra. One raises one's eyes, and sees only the wooden case, delicate as a Chinese box, but, at moments, one is still tricked by the siren's deceiving call; at times, too, one thinks one is listening to a captive genie, struggling in the darkness of the sapient, quivering and enchanted box, like a devil immersed in a stoup of holy water; sometimes, again, it is in the air, at large, like a pure and supernatural being that unfolds its invisible message as it goes by.
Marcel Proust (Du côté de chez Swann (À la recherche du temps perdu, #1))
To Urbain Grandier, for example, the Good Fairy had brought, along with solid talents, the most dazzling of all gifts, and the most dangerous -eloquence. Spoken by a good actor - and every great preacher, every successful advocate and politician is, among other things, a consummate actor - words can exercise an almost magical power over their hearers. Because of the essential irrationality of this power, even the best-intentioned of public speakers probably do more harm than good. When an orator, by the mere magic of words and a golden voice, persuades his audience of the rightness of a bad cause, we are very properly shocked. We ought to feel the same dismay whenever we find the same irrelevant tricks being used to persuade people of the rightness of a good cause. The belief engendered may be desirable, but the grounds for it are intrinsically wrong, and those who use the devices of oratory for instilling even right beliefs are guilty of pandering to the least creditable elements in human nature.
Aldous Huxley (The Devils of Loudun)
There is an intellectual trick, which consists in associating the idea of the gratification so firmly with some painful thought, that after a little practice the thought of gratification is itself immediately felt as a very painful one. (For example, when the Christian accustoms himself to think of the presence and scorn of the devil in the course of sensual enjoyment, or everlasting punishment in hell for revenge by murder; or even merely of the contempt which he will meet with from those of his fellow-men whom he most respects, if he steals a sum of money, or if a man has often checked an intense desire for suicide by thinking of the grief and self-reproaches of his relations and friends, and has thus succeeded in balancing himself upon the edge of life: for, after some practice, these ideas follow one another in his mind like cause and effect.) Among instances of this kind may be mentioned the cases of Lord Byron and Napoleon, in whom the pride of man revolted and took offence at the preponderance of one particular passion over the collective attitude and order of reason. From this arises the habit and joy of tyrannising over the craving and making it, as it were, gnash its teeth. “I will not be a slave of any appetite,” wrote Byron in his diary.
Friedrich Nietzsche (Daybreak: Thoughts on the Prejudices of Morality)
Hi again ! My fav quote from "Kisses from Katie " By Katie J Davis frm page 174 As an 8 year old ,when I first started hearing Céline Dion’s songs, I did not realize that she was almost always singing about someone she is sooooo desperately in love with ! She has such longing and such agony as she is away from her lover .But now a I feel so much longing for my boyfriend whom Im losing .I see a lesson in this : I think the way Celine Dion feels about her lover is the way God must feel about the church ,which in some ways seems to have strayed so far from Him . I think God allowed me to REALLY MISS my boyfriend so I could catch a tiny glimpse of what God’s heart must feel as the church strays into religion and away from things that are so important to Him like helping the impoverished, unwanted people of the world . He longs and desires for my heart to come back to Him each and every minute of each and every day . God so deeply ,passionately , desperately loves us . He intensely longs for his lover to come back to his teachings of giving all we a have to Him ,our beloved , who lives in the hearts of the suffering poor people of this world and unite as a community in an effort to serve HIM in Them and I am so awed by his love for me .I feel so precious and dear to him that He is singing to me even more longingly and passionately than Celine Dion sings to her lover. That is pretty WONDERFUL !!! Satan is not a fan of God our love affair with God and so Satan is battling every day to keep us from giving our hearts to God. I am becoming more keenly aware than ever before of this battle between God and Satan to claim my heart . The devil tricks us into giving our hearts to materialistically selfish desires: wanting more and more for ourselves so we forget Love for God and our neighbor. So that we trade our noble inheritance : the precious treasure of LOVE God wants to shower on us which no money or processions can buy for more ME ME ME . No where in the bible does it say I deserve a reward (boy friend and material abundance ) here on this earth but it does say that I will have a joy so great that it is greater than all good things of this world combined . Colossians 3:23 says “Whatever work you do do it with all your heart (it does not say “and after this work you deserve a long hot bath and some me time “ it does say “Serve with all your heart since you KNOW that you will receive an in heritance in heaven from the Lord as a reward “ …And we KNOW in our hearts that God is ALL we need to overflow with joy …. (Matthew 19-21 says Do not lay up for your selves treasures in this world where moth and rust doth corrupt …..but lay up for yourselves treasure (Love for God )which will be yours for eternity “ Bless you , Dari
Katie Davis
One—that each coven must have its leader and only he might order the working of the Dark Trick upon a mortal, seeing that the methods and the rituals were properly observed. Two—that the Dark Gifts must never be given to the crippled, the maimed, or to children, or to those who cannot, even with the Dark Powers, survive on their own. Be it further understood that all mortals who would receive the Dark Gifts should be beautiful in person so that the insult to God might be greater when the Dark Trick is done. Three—that never should an old vampire work this magic lest the blood of the fledgling be too strong. For all our gifts increase naturally with age, and the old ones have too much strength to pass on. Injury, burning—these catastrophes, if they do not destroy the Child of Satan will only increase his powers when he is healed. Yet Satan guards the flock from the power of old ones, for almost all, without exception, go mad. In this particular, let Armand observe that there was no vampire then living who was more than three hundred years old. No one alive then could remember the first Roman coven. The devil frequently calls his vampires home. But let Armand understand here also that the effect of the Dark Trick is unpredictable, even when passed on by the very young vampire and with all due care. For reasons no one knows, some mortals when Born to Darkness become as powerful as Titans, others may be no more than corpses that move. That is why mortals must be chosen with skill. Those with great passion and indomitable will should be avoided as well as those who have none. Four—that no vampire may ever destroy another vampire, except that the coven master has the power of life and death over all of his flock. And it is, further, his obligation to lead the old ones and the mad ones into the fire when they can longer serve Satan as they should. It is his obligation to destroy all vampires who are not properly made. It is his obligation to destroy those who are so badly wounded that they cannot survive on their own. And it is his obligation finally to seek the destruction of all outcasts and all who have broken these laws. Five—that no vampire shall ever reveal his true nature to a mortal and allow that mortal to live. No vampire must ever reveal the history of the vampires to a mortal and let the mortal live. No vampire must commit to writing the history of the vampires or any true knowledge of vampires lest such a history be found by mortals and believed. And a vampire’s name must never be known to mortals, save from his tombstone, and never must any vampire reveal to mortals the location of his or any other vampire’s lair. These then were the great commandments, which all vampires must obey. And this was the condition of existence among all the Undead.
Anne Rice (The Vampire Lestat (The Vampire Chronicles, #2))
A Season in Hell - 1854-1891 A while back, if I remember right, my life was one long party where all hearts were open wide, where all wines kept flowing. One night, I sat Beauty down on my lap.—And I found her galling.—And I roughed her up. I armed myself against justice. I ran away. O witches, O misery, O hatred, my treasure's been turned over to you! I managed to make every trace of human hope vanish from my mind. I pounced on every joy like a ferocious animal eager to strangle it. I called for executioners so that, while dying, I could bite the butts of their rifles. I called for plagues to choke me with sand, with blood. Bad luck was my god. I stretched out in the muck. I dried myself in the air of crime. And I played tricks on insanity. And Spring brought me the frightening laugh of the idiot. So, just recently, when I found myself on the brink of the final squawk! it dawned on me to look again for the key to that ancient party where I might find my appetite once more. Charity is that key.—This inspiration proves I was dreaming! "You'll always be a hyena etc. . . ," yells the devil, who'd crowned me with such pretty poppies. "Deserve death with all your appetites, your selfishness, and all the capital sins!" Ah! I've been through too much:-But, sweet Satan, I beg of you, a less blazing eye! and while waiting for the new little cowardly gestures yet to come, since you like an absence of descriptive or didactic skills in a writer, let me rip out these few ghastly pages from my notebook of the damned.
Arthur Rimbaud
have loved her more than the light of these eyes that the earth will one day devour, I have not seen her as many as four times; and it is possible that on those four occasions she has not even once noticed that I was looking at her, such is the reserve and seclusion in which her father Lorenzo Corchuelo and her mother Aldonza Nogales have brought her up.’ ‘Oho!’ said Sancho. ‘So Lorenzo Corchuelo’s daughter is the lady Dulcinea del Toboso, also known as Aldonza Lorenzo, is she?’ ‘She is,’ said Don Quixote, ‘and she it is who deserves to be the mistress of the entire universe.’ ‘I know her well,’ said Sancho, ‘and let me tell you she pitches a bar as far as the strongest lad in all the village. Good God, she’s a lusty lass all right, hale and hearty, strong as an ox, and any knight errant who has her as his lady now or in the future can count on her to pull him out of the mire! The little baggage, what muscles she’s got on her, and what a voice! Let me tell you she climbed up one day to the top of the church belfry to call to some lads of hers who were in a fallow field of her father’s, and even though they were a good couple of miles off they could hear her just as if they’d been standing at the foot of the tower. And the best thing about her is she isn’t at all priggish, she’s a real courtly lass, enjoys a joke with everyone and turns everything into a good laugh. And now I can say, Sir Knight of the Sorry Face, that not only is it very right and proper for you to get up to your mad tricks for her sake – you’ve got every reason to give way to despair and hang yourself, too, and nobody who knows about it will say you weren’t justified, even if it does send you to the devil.
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (Don Quixote)
The government doesn’t care if our kids learn to think or learn for the sake of learning, as long they learn to love their country, and grow up and pay taxes. How much of what we learnt in 10 years of our schooling actually comes handy in our day-to-day lives? Why can’t we learn useful skills, like cooking, in school that actually come in handy when it comes to survival? Does schooling need to last for 10 years? Is it possible to complete schooling in 7 years? Nobody knows and schools have done a great job at not letting us ask questions. We live in times where we cautiously invest 4 years in undergrad schools or 2 years in B-schools in the hope that we acquire strong skills or at least secure a job. Schooling, as it exists, is a 10-year course that neither helps us get a job nor imparts a skill and unfortunately, it is compulsory. Half the jobs that exist today won’t even exist 10 years from now. That’s how fast the world is progressing. We still ask our kids to learn when Shah Jahan was born. It is a joke that at the end of these 10 years, we are expected to choose a career in science, commerce, or arts when school education hardly helped us explore ourselves. Some of the world’s greatest artists, athletes, inventors and scientists are from India. Unfortunately, they are all engineers and tragically none of them know about their talents. The biggest reason for this tragedy isn’t the society, parenting, coaching or anything else. The school is the reason and they too are all eventually victims of the same century-old schooling system. In the legendary words of Kevin Spacey from Usual Suspects, “The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.” and our school is our society’s biggest devil.
Adhitya Iyer (The Great Indian Obsession)
Cam let go of Evie and approached Sebastian as the room emptied. “You fight like a gentleman, my lord,” he commented. Sebastian gave him a sardonic glance. “Why doesn’t that sound like a compliment?” Sliding his hands into his pockets, Cam observed mildly, “You do well enough against a pair of drunken sots—” “There were three to start with,” Sebastian growled. “Three drunken sots, then. But the next time you may not be so fortunate.” “The next time? If you think I’m going to make a habit of this—” “Jenner did,” Cam countered softly. “Egan did. Nearly every night there is some to-do in the alley, the stable yard, or the card rooms, after the guests have had hours of stimulation from gaming, spirits, and women. We all take turns dealing with it. And unless you care to get the stuffing knocked out of you on a weekly basis, you’ll need to learn a few tricks to put down a fight quickly. It causes less damage to you and the patrons, and keeps the police away.” “If you’re referring to the kind of tactics used in rookery brawls, and quarrels over back-alley bobtails—” “You’re not going for a half hour of light exercise at the pugilistic club,” Cam said acidly. Sebastian opened his mouth to argue, but as he saw Evie drawing closer something changed in his face. It was a response to the anxiety that she couldn’t manage to hide. For some reason her concern gently undermined his hostility, and softened him. Looking from one to the other, Cam observed the subtle interplay with astute interest. “Have you been hurt?” Evie asked, looking over him closely. To her relief, Sebastian appeared disheveled and riled, but free of significant damage. He shook his head, holding still as she reached up to push back a few damp amber locks that were nearly hanging in his eyes. “I’m fine,” he muttered. “Compared to the drubbing I received from Westcliff, this was nothing.” Cam interrupted firmly. “There are more drubbings in store, milord, if you won’t take a few pointers on how to fight.” Without waiting for Sebastian’s assent, he went to the doorway and called, “Dawson! Come back here for a minute. No, not for work. We need you to come take a few swings at St. Vincent.” He glanced back at Sebastian and remarked innocently, “Well, that got him. He’s hurrying over here.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Winter (Wallflowers, #3))
I can only imagine the sort of havoc Oliver must have wreaked as a boy.” Oliver handed Minerva in, then climbed in to sit beside her. “We weren’t that bad.” “Don’t listen to him,” Minerva exclaimed, her eyes twinkling. “One dull evening, he and his friends went to a ball dressed in the livery of the hired footmen. Then they proceeded to drink up the liquor, flirt and wink at the elderly ladies until they were all blushing, and make loud criticisms of the entertainment. After the lady of the house caught on to their scheme and rounded up some stout young men to throw them out, they stole a small stone cupid she had in her garden and sent her a ransom note for it.” “How the devil do you know that?” Oliver asked. “You were, what, eleven?” “Twelve,” Minerva said. “And it was all Gran’s servants could talk about. Made quite a stir in society, as I recall. What was the ransom? A kiss for each of you from the lady’s daughter?” A faint smile touched Oliver’s lips. “And she never did pay it. Apparently her suitors took issue with it. Not to mention her parents.” “Good heavens,” Maria said. “Come to think of it,” Oliver mused aloud, “I believe Kirkwood still has that cupid somewhere. I should ask him.” “You’re as bad as Freddy and my cousins,” Maria chided. “They put soap on all the windows of the mayor’s carriage on the very day he was supposed to lead a procession through Dartmouth. You should have seen him blustering when he discovered it.” “Was he a pompous idiot?” Oliver asked. “A lecher, actually. He tried to force a kiss on my aunt. And him a married man, too!” “Then I hope they did more than soap his windows,” Oliver drawled. The comment caught Maria by surprise. “And you, of course, have never kissed a married woman?” “Not if they didn’t ask to be kissed,” he said, a strange tension in his voice. “But we weren’t speaking of me, we were speaking of Dartmouth’s dastardly mayor. Did soaping his windows teach him a lesson?” “No, but the gift they left for him in the coach did the trick. They got it from the town’s largest cow.” Oliver and Minerva both laughed. Mrs. Plumtree did not. She was as silent as death beside Maria, clearly scandalized by the entire conversation. “Why do boys always feel an urgent need to create a mess others are forced to clean up?” Minerva asked. “Because they know how it irritates us,” Maria said.
Sabrina Jeffries (The Truth About Lord Stoneville (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #1))
No, she couldn’t blame this one on him. This one was entirely hers. She’d sent him running away. Everyone knew it, too, which was nowhere more apparent than in the carriage once they were all settled in and headed off. Lisette was unusually silent. The duke’s wooden expression said that he wished he could be anywhere else but here. And Tristan was studying her with a cold gaze. He did that for a mile or so before he spoke. “You’re a cruel woman, Jane Vernon.” “Tristan!” Lisette chided. “Don’t be rude.” “I’ll be as rude as I please to her,” he told his sister, with a jerk of his head toward Jane. “That man is mad for her, and she just keeps toying with him.” Guilt swamped Jane. And she’d thought that spending half a day trapped with Dom would be bad? She must have been dreaming. “It’s none of our concern,” Lisette murmured. “The hell it isn’t.” Tristan stared hard at Jane. “Is this about Nancy? About the fact that if she has a child, Dom will lose the title and the estate?” “No, of course not!” How dared he! “Tristan, please--” Lisette began. “That’s why you jilted him years ago, isn’t it?” Tristan persisted. “Because he no longer had any money, and you’d lose your fortune if you married him?” “I did not jilt him!” Jane shouted. An unnatural silence fell in the carriage, and she cursed her quick tongue. But really, this was all Dom’s fault for never telling his family the truth. She was tired of being made to look the villainess when she’d done nothing wrong. “What do you mean?” Lisette asked. Jane released an exasperated breath. “I mean, I did jilt him. But only because he tricked me into it.” When that brought a smug smile to Tristan’s face, she narrowed her eyes on him. “You knew.” “Not the details. I just knew something wasn’t right. But since it was clear that neither you nor my idiot brother were going to say anything without being prodded into it, I…er…did a bit of prodding.” He smirked at her. “You do tend to speak your mind when you get angry.” Jane scowled at him. “You’re just like him, manipulative and arrogant and--” “I beg to differ,” Tristan said jovially. “He’s just like me. I taught him everything he knows.” “Yes, indeed,” Lisette said with a snort. “You taught him to be as much an idiot as you.” She glanced from Tristan to Jane. “So, is one of you going to tell me what is going on? About the jilting, I mean?” Tristan cocked an eyebrow at Jane. “Well?” She sighed. The cat was out of the bag now. Might as well reveal the rest. So she related the whole tale, from Dom’s plotting with Nancy at the ball to George’s involvement to how she’d finally discovered the truth. When she finished, Tristan let out a low whistle. “Hell and thunder. My big brother has a better talent for deception than I realized.” “Not as good as you’d think,” Jane muttered. “If I hadn’t been so wounded and angry at the time, I would have noticed how…manufactured the whole thing felt.” Lisette patted her hand. “You were young. We were all more volatile then.” Her voice hardened. “And he hit you just where it hurt, the curst devil. No wonder you want to strangle him half the time. I would have strung him up by his toes if he’d done such a thing to me!
Sabrina Jeffries (If the Viscount Falls (The Duke's Men, #4))