I present the Thinking Mans Chaotic Evil, in the form of the improvisational manipulator. As before, I welcome your comments and criticisms.
The world is a hard-luck kind of place. Survival from one day to the next, for some people, is taken care of for them. They have a good, vigilant force of protectors watching over them as they sleep, and they have a routine they follow religiously that either keeps them out of harms way or waves a red flag when that routine is broken. Then there are people like me. I don’t have the luxury of dedicated police looking in on me. I don’t get to have that routine to keep my days occupied. For me, survival is a day-by-day, minute-by-minute crapshoot. Survival is hard enough, so why wouldn’t I bring loaded dice to the game?
Life never gave me a chance, really. I was born into a world of “No.” No, you can’t eat today. No, you can’t sleep here. No, you can’t come in from the cold. No… no, your son is in a better place. When you’re hungry, tired, and shivering, and no matter how badly you’re hurting, the world doesn’t really care how much you just want to hear “Yes.” The only way to make it through, I learned, is to make your own “Yes’s.” When my stomach is growling, I take food. When I’m wet and frozen to my bones, I find a coat. When a healer, a supposed “man of faith,” tells me there’s nothing he can do for me and mine, I don’t give him any option but one: find a way.
People get this crazy notion like I’m a menace to their little world. The thing is, though, I don’t go out of my way to screw with them. I don’t wake up every morning and think, “Oh, what a beautiful day! There are birds chirping, the sun is shining, and everyone has a smile on their face! How can I destroy it ALL?!” I’m no sadist, I’m a realist, and the sad reality is that if I don’t stand up for myself and actively try to improve my lot, this miserable world and the people in it will go out of their way to destroy me. Sometimes that means taking something that doesn’t belong to me. On rare occasions, I have to find a way around someone, and if they refuse to move, then yeah, sure, I’ll find a way through them. For the record, I can’t remember the last time I met someone I couldn’t incentivize to get out of my way.
While we’re on the subject, I’ve had my run-ins with John Q. Law, to be sure. They can’t understand how someone like me can find anyone to get along with. They simply don’t understand that I just don’t care who I run with. Why should I care? If they don’t take issue with me, why should I take issue with them? Smart or dumb, as long as they’re not a snitch and don’t have a stick up their bum, I’ll find any port in a storm. The more people you surround yourself with, the easier it is to get lost in them. The more people you can ingratiate yourself with, the better protected you become. The more folks that start to like you, the more they start to act like you. In fact, you’d be surprised how little it takes to get an otherwise upstanding member of society to start seeing things from my perspective:
“You know, Tommy, he’s just going to keep lying to us.”
“Tommy, just put a little pressure on him, he’ll cave.”
“Oh, come on, Tommy, what’s a little blood compared to the lives he’s thrown away?”
“Tommy… Tom. Listen to me now, Tom. We can’t just let him walk away. He’ll tell everyone what you did to him. He’ll jeopardize everything we’ve been trying to do. He has the cuts to prove it. You have to finish this, Tom. You have to protect yourself. You just have to keep cutting…”
“You and me, Tom, we’re in this together now.”
...yeah, until I say we're not.