A villain can be many things – from the casual cruelty of the hobbyist to the concentrated machinations of an expert. But Arching, the true Arching of a hero, that, my friend, takes love. Oh, it’s often thought that it’s hate, boiling rage or vengeance that fuels the rivalry between a hero and villain, but this is only the surface of the grand story. Deep down, beneath the rage, beneath all that fire and vitriol, must be love. You must love your hero, my friends; you must love her like she is your own child, like she is a part of your soul. When another villain tries to kill your her, it is jealousy you must feel. When she falls in love, you kidnap her lover because she cannot give so much time and attention to someone who isn’t you. Anyone who dares take her attention from you must be destroyed.
But you can be no mere stalker. No mere obsessive. You must make yourself worthy of her – you must shine as her darkened mirror – you must glow in her refracted glory. It is through you that she is great – because she can defeat you, is she all the more glorious.
You must follow her, watch her, bide your time with her, adore her, memorize her movements, impersonate her. You have to make her costume yourself, as she must have done, sewing together the spandex and leather, slipping into that smooth fabric, the shine against your skin. Look at yourself in her skin, her flesh – you are inside her now, you wear the mask that is her face and you know her at last.
At some point, you will team up with her. She will be persecuted, condemned – driven from her sanctuary by the mob that once exalted her. You will be there for her, as you’ve always been. You will help her hunt down those that have hurt her and you will destroy them together. But then, after her enemies have been struck down, you will betray her, because you can never be just an ally, because you love her, you love her with every ounce of blood that pumps though your blackened heart.
If she falls by the hand of another, you must destroy them for daring to touch what was yours. And if you kill her, if you crush her heart in your hands, if you burn her to nothing in acid, if you do manage that, you must follow her into that night because you are dead without her, nothing, burned away.
To Arch takes love. Anything else is just playing games.