In Love with the Darkness

I have been in quite a funk for the last couple of days. You see, I don’t adjust well to Daylight Saving Time. It affects my mood in general, and I’ve been affected more than usual this year. However, that’s a post for another day.

Today, I went to see “300: Rise of an Empire” with a couple of friends. I almost didn’t go, and armed with the knowledge I have now, that would have been a tragic decision. You see, the movie was precisely what I needed to calm my nerves, with its sex, violence, and blood, all in glorious 3D. More than that, though, was the main character, Artemisia, played by Eva Green.

Her character was dark. That is, she was arguably Neutral Evil on the D&D scale. She had reasons for her personality, but that did nothing to lessen the cutthroat nature she exhibited. From the punishment she served onto a failing general to how she manipulated those around her, including a God-King, she was cold, calculating, menacing, and dangerous.

…and I was immediately taken with her.

Sure, she was quite beautiful, with her long black hair and piercing brown-eyed gaze, but it was her personality that grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. I found myself, to be brutally honest, turned on by her actions. Even in the scene in which she punished a failing general, I was trying to soak up everything about who she was. I realized I was brainstorming ideas to win her.

That revelation startled me. “I like nice girls,” I told myself, “not women this clearly bad for me.” I have long told myself that I want the woman who is a nice girl. Eowyn from Lord of the Rings, for example, may be a fighter, but she also firmly walks in the light. While I may be attracted to someone like Black Widow from the Avengers, I never really considered her someone with whom I’d desire a relationship.

Or do I? The women I’ve found myself most attracted to in my life were not “safe”. Of course, I’m referring to those few women in real life that I’ve become close to. My first girlfriend was nice to me, but had a wild streak that eventually caused our breakup. My love from NJ was a bad woman from start to finish. While my longest relationship with a woman wasn’t terribly dark, the circumstances surrounding our relationship (and who we had to keep in mind) were not all rainbows and unicorns. While I freely admit that I may be stretching the examples above just a bit, I also think that there may be a grain of truth within it, too.

No matter how small Artemisia would have made me feel, as long as she was there at the end of the day, I would have been more than happy with her. No, that’s not quite right, either. Honestly, I think that she echoes something within my own soul, that I normally keep on a tight rein, for fear that it would break free and chaos would ensue.

Tonight, though, I embraced that darkness, and I found that I liked it. I attempt to live virtuously, not for any deity figure, but because I believe that’s how I should live. Doing the right thing has ever been my driving force, but for a couple of hours this evening, I walked the other path. Even in the sex scene (it’s 300, does that really surprise you?), I found that I would love that kind of relationship. Harsh at times, violent at times, yet with a mutual desire and love that ties it all together and keeps it from being simply a lust-fueled physical affair. I recently even wrote a letter about a bad relationship I had, and in it, I was appalled at my ex’s suggestion that I was anything but a gentle, loving partner.

What I find particularly interesting about this seemingly-new discovery is that, while it may feel new, it probably isn’t. Death isn’t something that many would consider a good thing, yet I have felt an absolute love of Death – albeit as personified by Neil Gaiman in Sandman – for over 20 years now. In recent years, as I have explored my pagan side, I am smitten with Freya; however, not as her love and fertility aspect, but as the goddess of Death who gets choice of the slain before Odin. I fell in love with a Michael Whelan painting of Diana/Artemis (it’s only recently that I learned they are two distinct goddesses, so that one image continues to serve as representation for both in my mind), and male suitors of her, according to myth, did not fare well.

I’ve always thought about my ideal relationship as one in which I am provider and protector. It’s not out of some antiquated ideal, but it’s what I want to do for the one I give my heart. Tonight, though, I considered the possibility that my ideal may not need a protector; truthfully, she may be my protector. I considered the possibility that the gender-standard roles in a relationship are reversed, or at the very least, interwoven more than in a typical manner.

This is a lot for me to process tonight, and I decided to put it down on “paper” before I forget it, because I know this is just the first inkling of a much larger thought process. I’m sharing it on my WordPress mainly because I wanted to get it published somewhere there’s a chance someone will see it. I don’t know why, but I want to air these words with the universe.

If you are here from the Facebook link, you are in the same group that saw that letter about my ex from New Jersey. I apologize for the random, meandering way I wrote this, but as I like to say, flow-of-consciousness is important for puzzling out things like this.




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