Fear. They all live in fear. They fear everything and trust nothing and no one. The fear causes destruction. When someone fears they act and when they act in fear they often make the wrong choice. They love the fear. Ding. The doors of the subway car open up and twenty strangers walk into the trap. Twenty; that’s a good number. A wide array of people. All from different walks of life. A mixed bag of races, genders, personalities, incomes, and social statuses are on this train car. Welcome to my social experiment. By the end of this subway ride, my theory is that someone is going to die.

Forgive me, but I did not tell you how I was dressed. I am sitting in the corner of the car wearing a dark black three-piece suit with a black vest, white collared shirt ,and blood red tie. I also have black, shined leather dress shoes on my feet and a fedora on my head, and the outfit comes complete with a pocket watch and cufflinks. I look at the time on the circle watch connected to my vest with a golden chain. 9:30. The watch is returned to my pocket. Plenty of time. I read the newspaper in the corner, just trying to go unnoticed. The headlines made my heart leap for joy anger, hate, violence all the things that do my heart good.

Phase one. The car comes to a stop in the middle of a tunnel. Some people fly forward with the abrupt stop. Everyone wonders what is going on with fear in their hearts. I feed off the fear. The crowd murmurs and cries in outrage until the conductor comes on. “Sorry folks, but we had to make a quick stop for general maintenance concerns. Nothing to worry about.” The group groans and grows angrier. Anger comes from fear. Fear of the unknown the uncertainty of our collective future. They grow angry that the future is not certain. The future is never certain.

Phase two. The group has grown restless. They want to leave and the repairs have not been made yet. As the time passes they turn to their phones. What lovely inventions! They cause no one to think for themselves. They take away your individuality. They cause you to lack human skills. With the phones, everyone wants instant gratification and no one can wait and be human. They must get it now and be closed off in the bubble of their choosing. Don’t look outside and don’t think for yourself.

Once they are on the phones they call work and friends. Now for the second part of my experiment. Phones off! All the devices go silent. No signal and no service. Then the conductor comes on. “Um… folks we had to cut cell service to the car. There was too much interference with the issue at hand. We ask that you bear with us, ah…. And sorry for any inconvenience.

“What the hell?”

“Ah, come on!!” Many others are upset over this. The group starts to actually talk to each other. They discuss the situation and what it could be, and they do not even come close to the real cause of the hardship. Then it gets quiet. Too quiet. This is the kicker. Phase three.

Some people of the car realize that the police are on the tracks. They can see them through the windows. Then one of them catches a glimpse of the policeman’s back and they gasp at the words printed, “BOMB SQUAD.” “A bomb?” they wondered. “It makes sense that they cut the cell service, then; it must be a remote detonator." “Hold on, we do not know what it is, it could just be something that fell on the tracks,” another one said. But this group's rational thinking was long gone, and fear took over. “I can’t die today.” Some went to the door and started banging and demanding safety. “They can’t just let us die!” The doors of the car took blow for blow and the beatings of the passengers. They turned and started blaming one another once the conductor said this: “Well, folks, the train has been repaired and we can resume our normal course.” But only the car ahead of us in the train started moving. Our car stayed put and then the main lights went out and the emergency lights came on. The car was dark and the group imploded.

The banging grew louder. The screams of outrage became common. The younger members turned to crying. The screams of terror were music to my ears. Some were huddled in the corners, others hit the doors in attempts for freedom, others went to the emergency exit (that was stuck), and even more just complained and wined and demanded satisfaction. Dunk. The door of the car was forced open and one man fell out and collided with the train moving on the mirror tracks. The car was loud with misery. Well, this could not have gone better. I stand up and move to the center of the car. I put the newspaper under my arm as I lift my hat onto my head and reach into my pocket. 12:00. Noon, perfect timing. I reach into the other pocket and pull out the button and… Boom! The fire cleanses me as I gain new souls. I walk from the flames up to a city that has no idea what had happened down below. My newspaper in hand, I walk to the next victim. Oh dear… I have forgotten to introduce myself. My name is Lucifer.