The following work had been written for a story writing competition whose focus was on the Seven Deadly Sins.
“Demons and devils! Monsters and ghosts! Welcome to the event you have waited a century for. No really, you’ve literally waited a hundred years for this.” said a voice crackling through the microphone. “The Twenty First Sin Tournament!”
And with that the crowd went wild. Over-enthusiastic demons slammed their pitchforks into the ground. Some demons wore scarves that flaunted the names of their favourite contestants. Father ghosts hoisted their children above their shoulders so that they could get a better view of the arena below them.
“With the fires of Hell as our witness,” continued the voice “let us now welcome…”
You could hear the drums roll in the distance as the moment everyone was waiting for had finally arrived “…The Seven Deadly Sins!”
This time the crows went berserk as all the sins walked into the arena in succession. Envy came first, followed by Gluttony, Greed, Lust, Pride, Sloth and lastly, Wrath.
“As you all know,” said the voice, “The winner, apart from bragging rights for the next century, also receives a 25-year membership to the Resort of Doom and is also personally felicitated by Lucifer himself.”
Despite the lucrative offer, a sudden hush washed over the crowd, which lasted for about five seconds.
“Keeping up with the mortal trends of the previous century, our theme for today is an impromptu rap battle by each of the contestants. Without further ado, let us begin with the defending champion, Pride!”
The announcement was met with a mixed feedback. Pride was heavily tipped to win his twelfth title, and there were rumours doing the rounds that one particular demon had bet a whopping 35 thousand souls on Pride.
Pride took centre stage wearing a hoodie and with his pants worn alarmingly low. His voice boomed all over the arena.
“They call me Pride,
And underneath my stride
Are all the human souls that eventually died.
Through the Gates of Hell,
I can be your guide.
Making men think glory is their bride.
With a stroke of my fingers,
I can reverse the tide.
And to my rules, make a fool abide.
So if you want to have fun,
and not take my side.
Know that you can run,
But you cannot hide.”
Pride proceeded to drop an imaginary mic as the judges, the Furies of Hell, furiously took notes.
Next up was Gluttony.
The audience had high hopes from him after he finished impressively as runner-up in the last tournament. But this century’s catch clearly caught him off-guard. His palms were sweating as he faced the audience, who expectantly looked at him, waiting to start.
“I…uh…make people fat.
And then they eat more
Which increases their fat.
And that is that.”
As Gluttony walked back to his podium, some of the devils claimed that they actually heard crickets chirping, even though there were no crickets in hell.
The rest of the contest went on intensely for a grueling two hours. Never before had the audience witnessed a tournament as nerve-wrecking and closely contested as this one. Some of the audience were even escorted off the arena for their unruly behaviour.
During all the commotion, Greed managed to procure a human cap that had ‘S.W.A.G.’ written on it. Despite being questionable, this stunt earned him some brownie (or demon-y?) points with the judges.
At one point, Lust enthralled the audience as she ‘spat a few verses’ claiming to offer a century of satisfaction. But her performance didn’t go down well with some of the rap enthusiasts as they said it sounded more like poetry than rap.
The contest concluded with a performance by Wrath that had something to do with unicorns, which was very unlike her character.
Another hour elapsed; this time the judges were engaged in a hotly-contested debate as the crowd awaited their verdict with bated breath.
“Devils and demons!” said the voice as it came to life again. “The winner of the Twenty First Sin Tournament is… GLUTTONY!”
The crowd went silent.
“No, this is not a Miss Universe goof-up. The most prominent sin for the next hundred years is Gluttony.”
This time the crowd applauded, out of politeness mostly.
Seven years had passed since the verdict. There were probes into it after allegations of corruption were made.
In a shocking turn of events, it turned out that Gluttony had actually bribed the three Furies prior to the contest. The amount of human souls that exchanged hands after the contest cannot be certified yet with proper proof.
On a completely unrelated note, the three Furies seemed to be putting on a surprising amount of weight.
Despite public demand, all the rap battles could not be published due to the editor’s strict word limit policies. Sloth’s rap could not be published due to excessive usage of verbal abuses and profanities, which surprised even the demons present, who proceeded to cover their children’s ears.