Out of all the characters in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, the character that I found most frightening was Roger Chillingworth. Roger Chillingworth was the husband of Hester Primm. After a long disappearance, he returns to the town only to find that his ex-wife committed adultery with a un-named man. His sudden return to the town, frightens Hester. When Hester is standing on the scaffold, she sees Chillingworth. The look that he had on his face is described as
"His look became keen and penetrative. A writhing horror twisted itself across his features, like a snake gliding swiftly over them, and making one little pause, with all its wreathed involutions in open sight. His face darkened with some powerful emotion, which nevertheless, he so instantaneosly controlled by an effort of his will, that, save at a single moment, its expression might have passed for calmness." (42)
From the moment Chillingworth saw Hester on the scaffold, he wanted to get revenge. He decides to stay in Boston and because of his knowledge, he poses as a doctor. He becomes the doctor to Arthur Dimmesdale. Arthur Dimmesdaleis is the town's minster and the "un-named" father to Hester's child. He struggles with his sin and he starts to physicallyand mentally torture himself. Somehow, Chillingworth finds out that Dimmesdale has a terrible secret. He seeks to find out this secret by all means possible. As Dimmesdale's conditions worsens, Chillingworth moves in with Dimmesdale. Chillingworth and Dimmesdale start to become friends. Dimmesdale refuses to tells his secret to anyone and he starts to be suspicious of everyone. When Chillingworth and Dimmesdale have a conversation about redemption and unconfessed sin, they see Hester and Pearl outside the window and Chillingworth says that Hester is a woman who lives with her sin. Dimmesdale has to fight the urge to not expose his secret to Chillingworth about his sin. With Chillingworth as a doctor, Dimmesdale condition worses and the town start to see Chillingworth as the devil. Then, in the middle of the night, Chillingworth sneaks into Dimmesdale's room and lifts up Dimmesdale's shirt. He sees something on Dimmesdale's chest that makes him rejoice.
Chillingworth is very vindictive and he will do anything to find out Dimmesdale's secret. I think that the nickname for Chillingworth, the Leech, totally describes him, He sticks himself to Dimmesdale and drains the life out of him. I think that in somepoint of our lives, we will meet a person or substance like Chillingworth.