The Sphinx

Lee Crowley

“The Sphinx, an enigma who sat outside the city of Thebes, guarding its entrance to all travelers, challenging all who would dare enter with a riddle.”

“This creature was one of great intellect, asking its question to the unassuming travelers full well knowing that none would be able to guess the answer. As merchants and warriors passed through, they would face the monster in a battle of wits, each of them failing to answer, the Sphinx’s words winding through their heads, leaving them confused long enough for the beast to capitalize on it, devouring them and stopping them from entering Thebes.”

“The Sphinx thought itself infinitely wise, almost unconquerable in its intelligence as it stood between them and the city, the last challenge before their journies could come to an end.”

“However, there was a single man who could conquer the beast, Oedipus. A king in the making, he stood in front of the Sphinx and demanded to pass. None of the sphinx’s twisting words could daze him, instead, he stood his ground. Without intimidation on its side or confusion to manipulate its prey, Oedipus overcame the riddle, toppling the Sphinx.”

“Without its riddles, the Sphinx was powerless, grieving its defeat, it threw itself from a cliff, wishing to die rather than live as a failure.”

“Edward Newton, you use your riddles as a way to control the many men who have challenged you before. Weaving your words together into a net with which to entrap them, stopping them in their tracks as they attempted to march their way to greatness. Much like Sphinx guarded Thebes against prying eyes, your logic, and puzzles are the final vanguard, your intellect forming the treacherous path between obscurity and greatness. As the Sphinx before you, you guard something of great importance, you are the vigilant eye watching over the OSW title.”

“Many men have tried to beat you, and all of them have ended up failing, your traps and plans laid out so perfectly that they could never hope to overcome them. With each victory, each victim consumed, your figure became legendary. A being of pure intimidation and unmatched wit, you used these tools to your advantage, toying with your adversaries until they were so convinced that they were wrong that they would never dare answer your riddle, instead letting time run out on them, damning them to fall to you, becoming but another meal for the great Sphinx.”

“But finally, a king stands before you. I have watched you grow into the monster that you are, seeing each of your foes fall before you, their minds a maelstrom of disorientation and fear of what may come. But what sets me apart from the fallen is that much like Oedipus, I am destined for greatness.”

“I will not allow you to deceive me, when I come across your perch and answer your riddle, I will do so with confidence for I know I am right.”

“And as I make my way to Thebes, to lay my hands upon the title, I will just… smile.”