Some of the most beautiful moments in my life have been at the hands of tricksters. I have a gift, to be honest, for intentionally seeking out your sons and daughters. I find them either on the edges of society or victorious in the thick of it, those who have had to fight to survive. There is no middle ground. We’re all so tired, so exhausted, from being thwarted by life and the universe and everything.
I can’t really even explain the feeling. These days, every time that I come across another trickster, it’s simultaneous pity and love for seeing a person who so clearly needs help, and also a grim fear that settles in my gut like a knot. I already know they’ll get one up on me, they always do.
For a few moments, I just enjoy that flighty feeling of lightness and playfulness. The punchline always comes later, of course, and well and truly knocks me out. It’s not as fun to be tricked, in point of fact, as it is to be a trickster. I have been the butt of many jokes, pranks and tricks in my life. This is pretty clearly not my fault, after all, I don’t ask to be used and abused. No one does. But I do offer kindness and ruddy, raw honesty of spirit to everyone that I meet. People use that. The cons I’ve been taken in by (and this is by no means an exhaustive list) include:
- Losing all my friends and social status as a 14 year old to a particularly malicious 7 year old with a grudge
- Being framed for the ‘theft’ of a videogame
- Losing over 5 million gold in an MMO
- A lot of fortune telling schemes
- Being used for emotional labour and support galore
- Paying for other people’s stuff
- Crypto – don’t even get me started we will be here all day
- Well more than my fair share on a fair few assignments
- Pretty much a whole year of my life
- Jeans. All my jeans get holes in them…well maybe that’s my own fault who’s to say.
PT Barnum used to say that a sucker’s born every minute. Well you know what? I’m a sucker and proud. Pretty much anyone can pull the wool over my eyes, and I will just take it. I’ll do the absolute bare minimum to protect myself, and lead myself wide open to get hurt over and over again. It’s a conscious choice, because I don’t want to be hardened, cold and cruel. I want to have a soft, tender heart that absorbs rather than deflects the sharp darts of life. That’s what I want for myself, Loki.
I want to be pulled in by the magic, then spurned and spat on when the show is over. Among the discarded stale popcorn and spilled soda stains is where I find my stride. For I want to have a heart that heals, not just itself but other people too. I want to succeed, but not at all costs or the expense of other people. It’s horrible to use other people, but you know what? If I sign up for it, then I’m not really being used, and if you squint really hard you could say that I’m helping two other people.
I’m helping the trickster, because for the first time in a long time, they’re not *really* tricking someone. I’m helping whatever unwilling victim whose place I’ve taken because they don’t get tricked.
It’s a lot of squinting, though, and you know what would be better? It would be better if tricksters the world over stopped using their talents for morally dubious and selfish ends. Your children are so, so smart Loki. Truly, truly gorgeously brilliant in their schemes. Why don’t you tell them to scheme for the good of humanity? I think you could change the world, you know. Solve crime, cure cancer, fix the environment and whatever else you set them to do. I’d love that, you know.
If I can do one thing in my life, it will be to make other people happy. I want your children to be happy too, and I know they love playing tricks. So I let them play with me. It hurts a bit for a while, but then again I heal quickly enough. But one day, I hope that they will stop playing with me and start playing with me. We could change the world, and like Robin Hood and his Merry Men, play tricks for the best of reasons. It’s just as fun, and no one gets hurt.
Don’t you think that is the ultimate con, Loki? The final trick? To realize that they’ve been playing games not for their own benefit, but yours. The glory of a thousand good deeds, given straight to Loki, God of Asgard. It was his own children who did it. Good deeds.
Maybe this is my trick, nay my trap. That whenever a trickster comes near me, I will stubbornly try to sell them on this idea I have, that they can use their powers for good. So far, my track record of tricksters successfully turned to the light side of the force is zero. But I’m going to keep trying, because I love them. I love you too, Loki. I’ll try and save you too, and after all, that would be a hell of a trick.
It’d be amazing, to be the girl who tricked the one and only Trickster into saving the world.