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Quotes / Sealed Evil in a Can

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     Comic Books 

Inside the magic flask, the thing writhes like smoke. I can feel it through the glass. It's hungry. It wants me. The funny thing is - I want it. I want to feel it inside me... scrabbling in my veins. But I resist. For once, I have the power. I trapped it, John. Trapped a demon... in a bottle.
The high lasts until late at night - but the come-down is vicious. It chops the legs out from under me. Stark fear punches me in the gut. The demon talks to me. A million tiny, whining voices tell me its name: Mnemoth. I try to shut it out, but it keeps on and on. Pleading - threatening. It sings out in the night... and whispers in the dawn.
Gary Lester, Hellblazer: Hunger


Moria. You fear to go into those mines. The Dwarves dug too greedily and too deep. You know what they awoke in the darkness of Khazad-dûm... shadow and flame.

You locked me into your stuffy little hyper-lock chamber and tossed me away in the depths like yesterday's trash! Do you have any idea what it's like to be locked up in a rotten egg for 6,000 years? It's BORING. Not to mention I've had a Charley horse since the Renaissance...

Freddy: Hey, these things don't leak, do they?
The tunnel had been closed up long ago for safety reasons, and no one had ventured inside for reasons. But it was sealed not to keep people out, but to keep something in. And that something has gotten lonely over the years... lonely and hungry. And now it's coming to the surface to hunt... and to feed.
— Summary of "The Breathing Tunnel," In the Mouth of Madness



But in his arrogance and wrath, Immael allowed himself to be glimpsed for a moment in his true, blighted form. He was confronted by a Cistercian monk named Erdric from the monastery at Sedlec, and they fought above vats of molten silver in a great foundry. At last, Immael was cast down, caught in the moment of transformation from human to Other, and he fell into the hot ore. Erdric called for the metal to be slowly cooled, and Immael was trapped in silver, powerless to free himself from this purest of prisons.
And Ashmael felt his pain and sought to free him, but the monks hid Immael well and kept him from those who would release him from his bonds. Yet Ashamel never stopped seeking his brother, and in time he was joined in his search by those who shared his nature, and by men corrupted by his promises...

"It is not a calling that can be made in an hour, or even in a day. There are many bars to be let down, sealed doors to be broken, locks to be opened for which the keys were thrown away. If we are to have help against Ardneh in time, I must begin now to call upon — the powers that are to help us."
Wood, The Empire of the East

"... they open doors to they know not what, they take down bars that were put up when they were wiser and more frightened."
Anita, also from The Empire of the East, on what Wood was doing.

The ninth was strong and fought with might,
But lone Orannis was put from the light.
Broken in two and buried under hill,
Forever to lie there, wishing us ill.

I do not need yellowed paper to recall the creature to mind. It stays with me, and it will always be thus. For sometimes, when I am in the church alone at night, I believe that I can hear it digging, patiently and intently, moving tiny stone after tiny stone, its progress infinitesimally slow, yet still progress for all that.
It can wait.
After all, it has eternity.

Here I lay and for fifty years hated, and lusted for revenge on them that put me here. And for fifty more I desired only to be up and about my business, which is to put down my enemies. And then... then I thought me: but my murderers are no more. They are bones in graves of their own now, or dust blown on the winds. And in another hundred years... what of even the sons of my enemies then? Ah! Well might I ask! What of the legions who came up against these mountains in ages past and met my father's fathers waiting? What of the Lombard and the Bulgar, the Avar... and the Turk? Ah! A brave fighter in his time, the Turk - he was my enemy, but no more. And so five hundred years fleeting by, for I was forgetting the glories just as a grandfather forgets his own infancy, until I had forgotten - almost. Until I was forgotten - almost! And what then, when there was nothing left of me but a word in a book, and when the book itself crumbled to dust? Why, then surely I would have no reason to be at all! And perhaps glad of it. And then you came, a mere boy, but a boy whose name... was... Dragosaaaniiii....
Thibor Ferenczy, Necroscope

The humiliation of that night would be with him forever. They'd picked their season so carefully: high summer, and no rain in two months. The undergrowth of the Wild Woods was tinder dry, even the living tree caught the flame easily. He had been flushed out of his fortress with streaming eyes, confused and fearful, to be met with spikes and nets on every side, and that... thing they had, that sight that could subdue him.
Of course they weren't courageous enough to kill him; they were too superstitious for that. Besides, didn't they recognize his authority, even as they wounded him, their terror a homage to it? So they buried him alive, and that was worse than death. Wasn't that the very worst? Because he could live an age, ages, and never die, not even locked in the earth. Just left to wait a hundred years and suffer, and another hundred and another, while the generations walked the ground above his head and lived and died and forgot him.

Across the opening to the great central chamber lay a huge circular stone. Emblazoned on it was a hideous human-headed spider, whose belly had become home to quite the collection of graffiti over the years.
Nearly every culture that had ever inhabited or invaded either this ancient city or the modern one above it was represented. Though the highest were in languages unknown even to Yulric, the lower he read, the clearer the messages became. The last three warnings were obviously the most recent: in Arabic, May Allah protect against that which is inside and damn any who open it; in English, For the preservation of the Empire, sealed 1910 under orders of his Majesty by his humble servant Sir Henry Calibrey. May God preserve us; and in American, No seriously. Don't fucking open.
An Unattractive Vampire by Jim McDoniel

There's a blurry photograph of a concrete box inside the file, snapped from above by a high-flying U-2 during the autumn of '61. Three coffin-shaped lakes, bulking dark and gloomy beneath the arctic sun; a canal heading west, deep in the Soviet heartland, surrounded by warning trefoils and armed guards. Deep waters saturated with calcium salts, concrete coffer-dams lined with gold and lead. A sleeping giant pointed at NATO, more terrifying than any nuclear weapon.
A Colder War, by Charles Stross

     Live-Action TV 

"The Ancient Greeks foretold of a terrible container in which were housed all the evils of the world. How prophetic they were. All they got wrong was the name - they called it Pandoras Box, when of course they meant... Baldrick's trousers."
Edmund Blackadder, Blackadder the Third

You weren't there. In the final days of the war. You never saw what was born. But if the Time Lock's broken then everything's coming through, not just the Daleks, but the Skaro Degradations! The Horde of Travesties! The Nightmare Child! The Could-Have-Been-King with his army of Meanwhiles and Never-Weres! The war turned into HELL! And that's what you've opened. Right above the Earth. HELL IS DESCENDING!
The Doctor, Doctor Who, "The End of Time - Part 2"

"Ahh! After 10,000 years I'm free! It's time to conquer Earth!"
Rita Repulsa, Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers (opening theme)


"Peggy": We are free!

     Tabletop Games 

Teysa: Hello, Pazapatru. How are you?
Pazapatru: Teysa. I am well and look forward to my freedom in precisely 2,281 years, nine months, eleven days, two hours, forty-four minutes, and... ten seconds. On that day I will destroy you all.
Teysa: I don't doubt you will, but I hope to be a ghost by then.
Pazapatru: That would be wise.
Magic: The Gathering: Guildpact

"You've begun to understand the hedrons' true purpose," said Ugin. "The Eldrazi can be imprisoned."
"And how did that work out last time?" asked Jace.

Eventually, the waters of the quarry are drained. Despite the legends, the hole is not bottomless. If Veridian succeeds and the townsfolk don't destroy each other, what happens then? Something had to etch that poem on the shadowy stone of the cave. In this story, that "something" awaits at the bottom of the pit, where it has existed since before the town was built. What is the thing? Is it some fey creature, cruel in its whimsy and alien in its desires? Or is it some slumbering serpent, coiled and very, very hungry? The thing could be anything - an immortal man chained and cursed to live a painful eternity, a wretched djinn like those found in the Arabian Nights, or even the Devil himself.
— "The Swimming Hole," Mysterious Places

Belatedly, the acolytes of the Children did the only thing they could: they hid the accursed names within their thoughts, never daring to speak them, to breathe power into them, to tempt the Children closer to consciousness. This act served its purpose - barely; deprived of a steady stream of sustenance, the Children remained teetering on the border between dream and waking. Fortunately, the sleepers did not know they still slept; they lived in their dreams, ruling a shadow world that existed only in their fevered imaginations.
But to keep the Children trapped in these fever dreams took power, as much power as had been wasted over the centuries in calling the Children closer to wakefulness. To keep the Children asleep, the first tribe tortured their brethren, raped their own children, mutilated themselves, devoured the weak in cannibalistic orgies and walled in filth and degradation. Sacrificing what shreds of morality remained to them, they filled the dreams of these monsters with the sounds of anguish and misery, keeping them asleep with a murderer's lullaby. As long as their was sufficient rapine in the monsters' dream-worlds, they would not stir to seek it elsewhere.
Vampire: The Masquerade - Clanbook: Baali

For seventeen long centuries have I remained in this blade, confined within these metal walls. During all my imprisonment you are the first I have seen who is worthy to bear me into battle. Come, take my hilt, and I will serve you in the manner of my kind, drawing the blood of your enemies, protecting you in the midst of the fight, bringing you safe home again. Now draw me from the scabbard and test the fitness of my balance. See how easily I swing, how my keen edge cleaves the air. A good choice, am I not?


We try not think about the scariest one of them all. The gigantic, half dragon, half octopus, half humanoid Great Old One himself: Cthulhu! Waiting to return from his city beneath the sea!
Who day & night must slumber in R'lyeh?
Wave his tentacles, having nasty dreams
And who has the might, as master of R'lyeh
To drive humanity insane?
CTHULHU!!! Cthulhu!
CTHULHU!!! Cthulhu!


     Video Games 

When the Darkness and Angelus re-emerged during World War II, the Brotherhood was waiting for them. Don't ask me how, 'cause I sure as hell got no idea, but the Brotherhood defeated the Angelus, trapping her inside the Prism, where according to legend, she remains today... But here's the thing, Jackie: I'm looking at this Prism right now and I'm not picking up a thing. No holy essence, no dark magic, nothing. The Angelus is not inside the Prism. In fact, it never even touched it. If I can be honest, this scares the living fuck outta me.
The Angelus has not been seen on our world in seventy years. We thought it was because she was trapped - in this! But she's not, Jackie. She's still out there.
"Be bound here for eternity, Hunger stilled, Rage smothered, Desire dampened, Pride crushed. In the name of the Maker, so let it be."
Malcolm Hawke, Dragon Age II Legacy

Seals are meant to be broken.
Sage Ghido, Final Fantasy V

"An Ancient Evil Awakens..."
Halo 4 trailer slogan

After a terrible struggle they subdued Xerath, but they could not destroy his ascended form. Instead they trapped him within an enchanted sarcophagus and sealed him in an underground tomb. Eons passed, civilizations rose and fell, and Xerath's imprisonment was lost to memory. For centuries, Xerath's vast power tore away at the sarcophagus and weakened its spell. Finally, he willed forth a burst of magic that shattered his prison, but its core remained, containing Xerath and his power within its broken pieces.

And there are those who slumber in the spaces between. They hum their own nighted songs: "When the blazing sun is gone... When the nothing shines upon..." The Dreamers! Do not think of them too directly, sweetling. They'll hear you. The Sleeping Ones! Gaia's music boxes must play their lullabies forever. They must not wake. They idly tongue craters in moons, dreaming of the bigger feast...
The Buzzing, The Secret World

"The Adephagos disappeared into the void. Yeah well, guess that they didn't really say they destroyed that thing. They just went of and left this piece of crap remnant behind."
Yuri Lowell, Tales of Vesperia

     Web Original 

I'm just saying, the forces of good have this nasty problem of shoving evil inside of a box, writing 'DO NOT OPEN' on it, and then expecting that to be the end of it!

This place is a message... and part of a system of messages... pay attention to it!
Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.
This place is not a place of honor... no highly esteemed deed is commemorated here... nothing valued is here.
What is here is dangerous and repulsive to us. This message is a warning about danger.
The danger is in a particular location... it increases toward a center... the center of danger is here... of a particular size and shape, and below us.
The danger is still present, in your time, as it was in ours.
The danger is to the body, and it can kill.
"This Place Is Not a Place of Honor," from Damn Interesting

At the end of every season, we get to hear about the Snitch, a scary bad guy who spends 5 seasons FROZEN IN SYRUP!! Oooooooh, spooky.
JelloApocalypse, So This Is Basically Adventure Time

     Web Comic 

Beitus: AGGGGH
Nohmyt: A containment box
Nohmyt: So you can pay attention

     Western Animation 

And so, once again, we find that the evil of the past seeps into the present like salad dressing through cheap waxed paper!

"If an alien race possessed the technology to trap that thing and use Earth as their personal toilet, they did so for one reason...they couldn't kill it."
Lex Luthor, from Superman: Doomsday.


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