A Victory fit a Tyrant was written from a video prompt, which challenges the viewer to write from that prompt perpetually for ten minutes. The writing prompt video will be embedded beneath this article. The writing prompt reads:
Write a scene from the point of view of a character as they finally accomplish their life-long goal.
The catch? Your character, whether by choice or necessity, has brought a terrible change to the world. Some may even call them a ‘villain’.
Double catch? ‘Villain’ or not, your character has succeeded in their mission. Victory is finally here, at last.
The aim of these writing prompts is not for the writer to write something perfect, but to write as much as they can in ten minutes based on that prompt. What you’re about to see is a stream-of-consciousness draft that may not even be edited at all after being written.
Questions to consider:
- What change did the protagonist bring the world?
- How did the protagonist change the world?
- What setting is the protagonist’s “world”?
- Why is the protagonist criticised for changing the world?
- How does the protagonist justify changing the world?
- Has the protagonist changed the world for the better?
- Can the protagonist even justify having changed the world?
The first two sentences were provided by the prompt.
Is this… it? Is it over?
The dust has settled, and now, we emerge from the darkness, and step into a new world. I see light shining through skies once ashen, and people picking themselves up for the future. But I know what happens now. With every great decision, something is gained, but something is lost. Always. The choices I’ve made have shaped this century, and the next. Like a rock thrown into an ocean of endless possibilities. The tidal wave has passed, but at what cost?
I do not regret what I did. If you think, for a moment, to condemn my actions, I say – what would you have done? In that situation, there was no time for rationalising. You can debate the morality of what I did, but the truth is that you will never relate to the dilemma of that choice being a possibility. You’re free from that, for what I did.
It was easy, in the end. The button was red, but the consideration process was purely psychological. The world is not this way because of what I chose to do, but because of what I did. All it took was a single press. The easiest action. As soon as I realised that the temptation to destroy was more overpowering and more impossible to resist than the desire to stay the same – to remain in this Hellish war – I was able to do it.
My people are dead now. And my people’s enemies. My world, gone. But I live. It feels like a punishment. To live with my actions. So be it.
The conflict between the two races was so destructive that they were destroying the peace-loving planets around them more than each other. I come from a race of immortals. And the army we were fighting could integrate itself with our own technology. There was no other way, in the end. I think that, though this war was the worst the cosmos has yet known, and it’s result more than half the lives lost, the rest of the universe would thank me. They wouldn’t rationalise what I did, and I don’t think they could even understand it. But they’d thank me. The war that intruded into their peace is gone now. If it makes the troubles go away, they’d be grateful. Even if they find themselves forced to turn away their faces. There’s the weight of a billion souls on mine. Luckily, it’s about to change…
(Some of you will know what inspired this.)