Evil Dame

Today Earth will banish an abomination. Queen Denna, the most sinister creature to walk the planet, will be sent to a prison beyond the cosmic horizon with the aid of ancient magic.

The queen emerged from the lake of fire to face her captors.

As soon as she stepped on shore, the Elder warlocks bowed. They all wore robes comprised of so many exotic colors they looked like spiral galaxies.

The queen scoffed. “You’re embarrassing yourselves. Whether it’s respect or tradition making you bow before me, you look like fools. You’re masters of magic, and you bow to me?

Before the Queen could say another word, a blow knocked her to her knees.

“Then you may bow before me, mortal,” a voice from behind her said.

“God of Jupiter, Lord of Magicians, Shamuk,” the warlocks said in unison before sinking into a deeper bow.

“You feel strong and heroic hitting a women with her back turned, Shamuk? the Queen said.

Shamuk hovered three feet above the sand wielding his staff above her head. “Silence, you wicked bitch, and look into my eyes.”

The Elder warlocks stood in a circle around the queen, frantically tracing symbols in the air in front of them while Shamuk recited the incantation to invoke the guidance of the Serpents, one of the first creatures to slither into the darkness before there was a shred of light. They were the only creatures who could pass through the furthest, darkest parts of space without being torn to pieces by endless chaos. The queen would be bound on the backs of these serpents enduring legendary suffering for thousands of years before reaching the deep cosmic prison.

An event like this is extremely rare, the serpents only existed in stories. The most well known story: the banishment of a tainted soul to the most foul depths of all existence, breaching barriers of time and space, riding on vessels of nightmares.

As the Queen looked into Shamuk’s eyes, she witnessed her fate. She could feel herself moving through the air, cold and hot. The Queen could see stars passing by faster than she could process them. Strange noises all around, thunder and screaming, explosions and high-pitched battle cries, laughter. Wars were raging all around her. Hordes of beasts with no faces appear from nothingness, running through space like a fucked up nightmare. They were running towards her. Those battle cries, they were screaming her name. Stars began to explode and light up the darkness, exposing the infinite number of beasts running at her.

The serpent rode faster and faster as the number of creatures grew so large they were ripping holes in space, exposing unfathomable evil waiting for her on the other side. “Queen,” they said, “minion” others said, “Denna, my bride.”

Shamuk closed his eyes.

Advertisements

Sucker Punched

The following short story is brand new as of today. I refrained from posting what I wrote yesterday because I think it was more of a brainstorming activity. 

Sucker Punched

It was December.

I stood there staring at the shed door. It was almost 5 Am. My legs began to tremble so violently I thought I might fall, but I didn’t. Instead, I held my breath to avoid sucking in the sharp winter air and prayed Emily didn’t wake up early. I’d have to drive her to school in two hours so I had to work fast.

I reached into my fur-lined bomber jacket and grabbed the key. It felt like ice. I took a step forward and played with the lock, working the cold metals together hoping to create enough friction to melt the sliver of ice packed inside. I had nearly rendered the key useless before it slid home. After freeing the lock, I opened the door to find my beauty exactly as I left him. He was sleeping now, maybe even dead. I wasn’t sure nor did I care. All I knew was his body would still be warm from the heat lamps.

I shucked off my pants and peeled off my shirt. My balls shrunk up into my belly, but my cock was already getting hard. I gave the boy a light smack, “wake up.”

He didn’t move. I brought my fist above my head and landed it on his cheekbone. He flinched back and grimaced.

“Hey! There’s my sweet boy. For a second I thought you expired.” I lifted his head up by his hair and brought my shaft against his lips. “Suck,” I said.

“Please,” the boy whispered.

“I can’t hear you? Speak up!”

“I can’t. I feel so sick.”

I laughed before knocking out another one of his teeth. “Watch those teeth. Now get to it, we don’t have much time.”

The boy just hung from his chains, face-to-face with my throbbing member. He was starting to fall back asleep.

“I swear to god,” I said, “If you keep me waiting one more second I’ll kill your entire family.”

The boy did was he was told. I closed my eyes and thought about the trouble I’d be in when I got to work. I was supposed to set up a meeting between the partners and our newest client. It was a big case and we had a chance of winning if the client was willing to spend lots of money, which she had.

After I finished, I put my clothes back on and turned up the heat lamps. The boy wasn’t blistering enough. However, his lips were chapped enough to add more pleasure.

“I’ll be back before you know it,” I said.

“Could I have some water?”

“I can’t hear you. What’d I tell you about speaking up?”

The boy swallowed. “Can I please…. have just one drink of water.”

“Of course!” I said.

I unzipped my pants once again and shot a stream of piss at his face.  The boy writhed and spit the urine all over the place. I said, “You should probably swallow some of that. It’s good for ya.”

When I finally stepped out and locked the shed, I noticed Emily’s bedroom light was one. Perfect timing. I walked around the side of the house to the mailbox to get the paper, until I saw red and blue lights. I froze. They weren’t turned on, but they didn’t have to be. Anyone in their right mind could tell it was a cop car.

It was Desmond, one of the local sheriffs.

“Mornin’,” he said.

I smiled. “It’s too damn cold if you ask me. I been living here 35 years and still can’t stand this weather.”

“Well why don’t you do us both a favor and move?” Desmond said.

I laughed. “But if I leave, who’ll fuck your wife?”

Desmond laughed even harder and said, “Watch yourself you sly bastard. I could beat the shit out of you with my night stick and still have my job in the morning!”

“Ain’t that the truth you fucking pig.” I grabbed the paper and began scanning the front page. “Any suspects yet for the Omaha kid?”

Desmond cocked an eyebrow. “Why else do you think I’m here?”

I could feel the slightest tremble travel from my toes to the tips of my fingers. My balls shrunk further into my belly. “What’re you saying, Des?”

Desmond unclipped the holster of his gun. “How long have I known you, Mitch?”

I blinked several times before I could answer. “We grew up together. ‘Bout 30 years I’d say.”

“You’re damn right.” Desmond took a few steps towards me and got so close I could smell the strawberry danish on his breath. “30 years I known you and in 30 years I got to know you pretty damn well.”

I couldn’t breathe. “You got something to tell me? Tell me now goddammit.”

Desmond unholstered his  .40 cal S&W and pressed the tip of the barrel under my chin. “I woke up this morning thinkin’ it was gonna be a pretty shitty day after I knew I had to roll up to your place and see your ugly mug.”

He turned the safety off. “Are you outta your god damn mind?” I said.

Desmond smiled, the bottoms of his teeth black from years of chewing tobacco. “That makes two of us, don’t it? Of course we don’t have a fuckin’ suspect,” he said putting his gun back in its holster. “If we did, I wouldn’t be here.”

“You’re just tryin’ to get your fuck on?” I asked.

“Like I said, I woke up thinkin’ it was gonna be a shitty day. Make it better for me. Where’s that little pretty boy? Still out back?”

“Yeah.”

Desmond made his way to the shed.

“Hang on a sec,” I said.

Desmond stopped and turned towards me. I tossed him the key. “The padlock’s tricky, gotta give it some muscle.” I gave him a wink.

I went into the house and started a pot of coffee. I went upstairs to find Emily brushing her teeth. “Good morning, sweetie,” I said kissing her head.

“Daddy, why do your friends keep going into our shed?”

I laughed and shook my head. “Baby girl, I’ll tell you when you’re older.”

Hell + Death Rant

I want to add a disclaimer before you read any further. I’ve gained some of my followers through my simple rants on film and life. This particular post goes a little deeper and is a bit darker than my other posts so it’s understandable that some may find it unsettling and quite possibly depressing.

10c6a4b8f42c9fa6050faca652c72fd3-pj9mrk

Lately I’ve been thinking more and more about what Hell would be like if it were real. If you had the chance to see it, would you want to? If you could spend a day there, would you go? Of course, many would instantly turn down such an opportunity. Personally, I wouldn’t be too fond of constant torture and unimaginable torment. If I were able to visit Hell without the painful repercussions, I’d be there in a flash.

Then again, Hell simply wouldn’t be Hell if you didn’t experience it. I believe such a place is beyond our comprehension and to sit behind a viewing glass would be futile. It’s not something you see with your two eyes. It encapsulates your soul and grinds it against flaming spikes and peels the skin from your face, down your back and slices the soles of your feet. The most unsettling experience of Hell would be the complete molestation of the consciousness. Perhaps a stage or method of torment would be the disfigurement of the physical body—but the rules of our world don’t apply here. In Hell, you’re there for the long haul. Eternity as they call it. Your body is forever a slave to the lusts and desires of the demons and entities which reside in the deepest cracks of the darkest voids.

Driving on my way to school this morning, I spotted two crosses hammered into the grass next to the highway. I usually never think twice about these things but this particular morning I thought about how morbid it is. At first I considered the fact that such things should be reserved for a cemetery but I remembered these crosses are just simple memorials and reminders to others to be careful on the roads. Maybe they even provide a sense of closure to the family and friends. Anyways, what if we had one of these crosses at the location of every place someone has died? I’m not talking about having them in hospitals and in homes, but public places. Places that you may pass by each day on your way to school or work or the shop. You could be going out to eat and there’s a cross hanging next to a table where a man clutched his chest in horror as his heart gave out, you’re in town shopping and pass by several crosses on the sidewalk where fatal muggings took place. And how horrible would it be to pick up your son or daughter from school and find tiny crosses in the lawn, on the steps, in classrooms and in the cafeteria. It’s even safe to say you may find some in a movie theater.

I’d wish to go a level deeper and wonder how many civilians have met their fate to mortars, machine gun fire, car bombs and chemical weapons. In the United States, we hear about this type of things only happening in the Middle East or Africa. I daresay if they happened in America we’d be encountering these cross memorials much more often. And then what purpose would they serve? What could we as a people possibly gain from these constant reminders of death? Would it be an increased appreciation of life or mourning for the dead? What if it’s both? I’m willing to bet several people would argue that is the current state of affairs; we don’t need these memorials to remind us how precious life is or for us to be sad over the dead who we believe died an untimely death. We don’t need these reminders because we have the television and Internet, two excellent news feeds providing each day with morbid realities and distractions to keep us going.

Side note: If you want to be part of a community who’s really into horror, go here: http://instasynch.com/rooms/mroddish/

It’s a great group of people, friendly and funny!

Amelia, Young Amelia

                                                                                                                                     amelia

You could dance like the seasons

and sing like the angels

A head full of imagination with princesses and princes

wizards and witches, giants and goblins

I was late to your recital that night

but it didn’t matter, you wouldn’t be there

My Amelia

Didn’t you learn never to talk to strangers?

What did the devil say before he took you?

Did he promise a wish?

You could’ve never known

I made a thousand wishes you had

Because maybe then you’d still be here today

and I wouldn’t have found you buried beneath the snow

I remember cradling you in my arms for the first time

I’ll never forget the last

Your face a sheet of white with a tint of blue

The tears stuck to your face

I still held you close and played with your hair

Winter had betrayed you

But I can still hear you in my dreams

the voice of an angel

I still hear you baby girl, I still do

Weekly Photo Challenge: Pop-Tart

Look at this photograph. Examine the exotic sugar rubies coating the surface pairing well with the marshmallow-white frosting. This elite double team of oral pleasure compliments the freshly baked crust harvested from the wheat fields at the base of Mt. Kilimanjaro. The ingredients are then flown to Venice where specialists examine the acquired goods and, if they’re of only the most exceptional quality, they give the green light for production. Mixed, shaken, baked, sprinkled, and cooled, the finished products endure the packaging process in an underground cellar in Paris where F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote Tender is the Night. One sample is pulled from the batch and flown on a private jet from an unknown hangar at an unspecified time to parliament where the decadent treat is heavily scrutinized by a board of aristocrats and the Royal Family. If visually appealing, it makes it to phase two of inspection.

The individual bestowed with the responsibility of tasting the pastry is chosen by the people of the world. Ballots are cast and collected from all reaches of the earth from the Sandwich Islands to North Dakota and the tribes of Budapest. The United Nations serve as a type of electoral college who also perform a full physical on the elected taste tester. After being knighted by the queen of England, the Chosen One is ready for the tasting ceremony.

The ceremony takes place at the Vatican in the presence of one first grade class, one UPS deliveryman, a Professor of History (also serving as a scribe to record this momentous event), one scientist, five randomly selected civilians from around the globe, and the Dalai Lama. The Chosen One is clad in only a white silk robe and has their head shaved and tattooed. The world waits. Will it taste good?

The Chosen One removes the treat from a gold platter lined with diamonds and sapphires. Sniffs it. Mouth waters. Brings it to their mouth and takes a generous bite. Those in attendance are at the edge of their seats, some begin to perspire. The Chosen One chews for a solid two minutes to fully exhaust their sense of taste. If the pastry is of the most exceptional quality, the Chosen One will drop dead. The first grade class put their hands together and pray that the Chosen One dies. Everyone wants the Chosen One dead so bad. “Don’t ruin this for us,” the UPS man thinks. The Chosen One swallows, loses his footing, and falls to the floor. The Chosen One is dead.

Everyone shoots to their feet, roaring with applause. Tears are shed for the martyr that has given the world its greatest gift. A moment of silence for the Chosen One. Moment over. The United Nations alert Kellogg’s that production of Pop-Tarts is to commence immediately. The world weeps collective tears of ecstasy. Babies are born and named after famous flavors. Cookies n Cream, Raspberry, Blueberry, Hot Fudge Sundae, strawberry, AND PLAIN. I rushed to the market searching for a box of Pop-Tarts. I snatched the Strawberry off the shelf and ran out of the store without paying. Sorry. I get home and back-flip up the stairs to the kitchen, rip open the box and unwrap my nutritious breakfast. I fix my eyes on this glorious sight. I cry. I cry because this work of art and personification of the divine is sacrificing itself so that I may, for the briefest of moments, satisfy my empty stomach. In memory of strawberry Pop-Tart 2/1/2013 1:30 PM – 2/1/2013 1:34 PM. 

Tommy and the Trees of Madness

 

The screen door flew open as the young blond-haired boy burst out carrying a pile of toys nestled against his chest. He made his way to the edge of the property near the forest and dropped them on the ground, sending a toy ball rolling past the trees and into the woods. He didn’t think much of it for he was too busy placing his toy cars side-by-side to get them ready for the grand prix. He picked up a small twig and held it like a microphone.

“Ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, welcome to the North American circuit, home of the finest racers and the fastest cars. Please, if you haven’t already, place your bets on the car you think will beat them all. Captain Hurley is the favored pick. Did ya see his performance last week, Jack? Oh I sure did, Tommy. Who could miss such a grand performance of speed and endurance? Right you are, Jack.”

Tommy pulled some grass out of the ground where the track would be. After a fair amount of tugging and pulling, he pressed his hands against the ground to smooth it out.

“The drivers have taken their places,” Tommy said. “Wait, Jack, where’s Crazy Charles? Your guess is as good as mine, Tommy.”

Tommy did a quick scan of the yard around him.

“He’s gotta be around here somewhere. Crazy Charles never bails right before a race!”

Tommy grabbed a toy car that was hidden under a small pile of grass.

“No worries, ladies and gentleman. Crazy Charles is pulling to the starting line right now. Drivers, start your engines!”

Making his best efforts at imitating the sounds of a growling engine, Tommy blew forth a shower of spit  from the wild vibration of his lips. He then started counting down from 10. Tommy set the faux microphone down and focused his hands on the shiny die-cast metal cars before him.

“10…9…8…7…”

More engine noises, more spit.

“6…5…4…3…”

When suddenly, the small toy ball he lost earlier rolled into his makeshift arena. Tommy fixed a confused look on the object, staring at it as if it were some foreign artifact. He then looked up and into the forest looking for whoever it was that rolled him the ball. There was no one that he could see, just the same old trees standing as still as statues.

That’s when he heard it. Someone was calling his name.

“Tommy,” it said. “Tommy, come here.”

Curious, Tommy slowly rose to his feet, gripping one of the toy cars in his left hand.

“Come here, Tommy I’m not going to hurt you,” it said.

Without saying a word, Tommy slowly walked to the forest’s edge. “Who is it?”

“A friend.”

The voice was neither male nor female. It was almost like a combination of both. Like an overlapped monotone voice of a man and woman.

“A friend?” Tommy asked.

“Yes.”

“Well, then come out. Let me see you.”

“I’m right here, Tommy. I’m right in front of you.”

Tommy took a single step back looking up and down, left and right. “Stop it, this isn’t funny.” His voice began to tremble. “Come out and show me who you are.”

“Foolish boy,” said the voice as one of the trees began to twist and turn like a towel being wrung dry.

In awe, Tommy watched as the tree in front of him became animated, stretching its branches out on all sides as if emerging from a deep slumber. The sounds of creaking lumber echoed through the forest, leaves sprinkled the ground while lush vegetation seemed to sprout along the trees exterior, starting near its roots and spiraling up to its apex. A few birds called out and flew from the forest annoyed by the sudden disturbance.

Tommy swallowed. “Are you… Are you my friend?”

“Yes, dear boy. That’s what I’ve been telling you all along, have I not?” The tree let out a final sigh that produced a sound beyond description. As if the tree were expelling its impurities while consuming the energy around it.

Tommy took a step closer, closely examining the patterns in the bark, captivated by its maze-like quality. After several seconds of admiring this grand tree, Tommy said, “Do you have a name?”

The tree laughed a long, echoed laugh that seemed distant yet genuine.

“Of course I have a name. Call me Crusoe.”

“Crusoe,” Tommy said. “Nice to meet you, Crusoe.”

The branches of the tree lowered, almost as if the tree were attempting some bizarre type of bow.

“And what about me?” came a sharp, high-pitched voice.

Tommy jumped. The voice had come from right next to him and he immediately noticed a second tree, equally as exquisite and enamored with the jewels of nature.

“What are you called, Mr. tree?” said Tommy.

“Mister tree? I am no mister!”

Tommy apologized. “You’re a lady?”

“Of course! Just look at my vibrant leaves, my delicate branches that reach far and wide, observe the curves in my trunk and the beautiful flowers that sprout from my bark.”

“I didn’t know there were girl trees,” Tommy said.

“That’s absurd!” the tree cried.

Tommy tucked his chin into his chest, slightly embarrassed. A small, thin branch stretched out to Tommy’s face, stroking it softly. “It’s alright, Tommy. I’m not mad at you,” she said. “Chin up, young man.”

Tommy looked up at the tree. “What are you called?”

“Lisanne. And don’t call me Liz for short.”

“I won’t, don’t worry,” Tommy said. He watched as the growth on the trees began to move like waves running towards the shore. The leaves became afflicted with bright shades of blue, red, purple, black, and gold in an endless illusory cycle.

Then came the androgynous, monotone voice, “It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance,” Crusoe said with an outstretched branch. Tommy hesitated before gripping the end of it when dozens of skinny branches wrapped around his hand like hundreds of cold worms.

“Hey!” Tommy said. “What’re you doing? Stop that!”

His requests were ignored as more and more braches snaked around his wrist and forearm growing tighter and tighter like a pumped up blood pressure cuff.

“Please,” Tommy said. “You’re hurting me, Crusoe.”

The serpent-like branches shrank back into the larger branches. “I’m sorry, Tommy. I didn’t mean to hurt you.”

Tommy flinched as he rubbed the tender spot. “It’s alright.”

“Good. Because I really am your friend and don’t mean to cause you pain,” Crusoe said.

“Of course you’re my friend. I’m just really confused,” Tommy said.

“Confused?” Lisanne said. “How so?”

Tommy, staring up at the fluorescent leaves, said, “I didn’t know trees could talk in real life.”

“They can’t” said Lisanne.

“But… you’re talking to me right now. And I know I’m not dreaming because I remember waking up and eating a big bowl of fruity crisps before I watched cartoons. Then I grabbed my toy cars and toy bouncy and came out here to play. And then I heard someone trying to talk to me and here I am now.” Tommy said.

“We know you aren’t dreaming,” Lisanne said.

Tommy scratched his head. “So, if trees can’t talk in real life and you’re talking to me right now and I’m not having a dream then how is this happening?”

“You have a very powerful imagination,” Crusoe said. “An incredibly powerful imagination.”

“Really?” Tommy said. “Does that mean you and Lisanne are my imaginary friends?”

“Yes. We are your imaginary bestfriends,” Crusoe said. “And there are hundreds and hundreds of us in the forest waiting to be your friend.”

“But there’s no way I could become friends with hundreds and hundreds of you!” Tommy said.

“Why not?” Lisanne asked.

“Because I’m just a kid and I don’t know how to be friends with trees.”

Crusoe and Lisanne let out their respective crude laughs.

“We can help you with that,” Lisanne said. “So far you’re doing just fine.”

“You would impress every tree in this forest,” Crusoe said. “We don’t ever get to talk to humans because they don’t know how to listen. We try all the time like I did with you earlier.”

A large smile grew across Tommy’s face, his blue eyes gleaming with excitement. “OK, I’ll be friends with all of you and I will meet every tree in this whole forest. Maybe I could even build a tree house with you!”

At that moment, the two trees let out a deep bellow, their leaves rapidly falling to the ground as the branches turned black and quickly retracted into the tree like measuring tape. The once luscious growth wilted and died, the bark appearing to grow thorns the size of large swords, all while a noxious black liquid oozed from every pore of the tree, polluting the ground beneath it.

This startled Tommy so much that he stumbled and fell on his back. Tears fell down his face yet his throat was unable to produce the slightest whimper. He could only watch as the trees went through their demonic transformation, silent tears streaking his rosy cheeks. “You guys… What’s going on? Stop it, please. You’re scaring me,”

Crusoe let out a long sigh that caused the air around him to spring forth in every direction, flapping through Tommy’s clothes and frilling his hair.

An even better idea is snatching up all your little human friends and chopping them up into little pieces. Then, we could stack them on your head, Tommy,” Crusoe snapped.

That wouldn’t be as fun as butchering his mom and dad and making a little fort for Tommy to play in.” Lisanne hissed. “But we both know humans start to smell after a while and they get real messy when you cut them up.”

“No!” Tommy said. The silent tears now sang notes of despair. “No, no, no, no. Please, Crusoe. Stop, Lisanne. I didn’t mean what I said. Please stop this. I take it all back, I take it all back!”

The trees laughed their wicked laughs once again. And as quickly as they made their transformation, they went back to the magnificence they displayed earlier. The branches emerged from the trees like a rolling red carpet, the leaves springing up just as rapidly and shining bright as ever. The flowers and growth crawled up the trees once again, the thorns disappeared and the mysterious black liquid melted into the ground.

“Very well then,” Crusoe said. “Human houses would be no fun anyways.”

Tommy was still on his back, hiding his face in his hands as he wept relentlessly, struggling to breathe through the gripping terror.

“Stop crying, Tommy,” Lisanne said.

Tommy continued to cry.

I said stop crying!”

“Lisanne,” Crusoe said. “We’ve obviously scared the boy. Tommy, we didn’t mean to scare you as much as we did. What you said made us angry, but we didn’t intend to terrify you. We were only trying to illustrate the sheer madness of your statement.”

Tommy slowly let down his hands, his eyes bloodshot and slightly swollen. “That was the scariest thing I have ever seen. That was scarier than all of my bad dreams put together.”

“Fear makes you stronger. Don’t be so afraid of the darkness, Tommy.” Lisanne said softly. “We want you to be our friend. Please, Tommy, come with us and be our friend forever.”

Tommy’s face softened and his muscles started to relax. “Forever?” he questioned. “How long is that exactly?”

“However long forever is,” Lisanne said.

Crusoe said, “One thing you’re going to learn about the forest is that time is measured in more ways than one. We don’t have clocks or watches here. The trees never speak about time nor do we pay much attention to it. We can only know when we first emerge from the earth and see our first sunrise to the time our branches become brittle, our colorless leaves shiver and fall, and our exhausted bark collapses to the ground. We get to experience this world only once and during that time we see so many beautiful things. You can’t begin to imagine the splendor that exists in this world.”

Tommy’s eyebrows shot up like switchblades. He wiped away his tears and said, “What kind of things are you talking about?”

“I can’t quite tell you,” Crusoe said.

“Oh but why not!”

“It’s not something that can be understood through language. These things of unfathomable beauty and mystery you can only experience.”

“I want to experience it, Crusoe! Lisanne, please, you two need to show me how!”

“I don’t know if you’re ready for it, Tommy,” Lisanne said.

“I’m ready!” Tommy shot to his feet. “I want it! I want it so bad!”

Crusoe said, “This is a big deal, Tommy. Once you decide you want this, there’s no turning back.”

“Oh, Crusoe,” Tommy said through tears. “I’m certain I want this. I know with all my heart I want to see all that you have seen.”

Tommy walked up to Crusoe and softly placed a hand on his bark. “I want to be your friend forever.” He looked over to Lisanne. “I want to be friends with you and every tree in this forest and every tree in the whole world! I’ll be with you for as long as I can.”

“Say that you want it with all of your heart,” Crusoe said.

“I want it with all of my heart,”

“Say you want it with all of your soul.”

“I want it with all of my soul,” Tommy almost whispered.

“Ok, Crusoe. He truly wants this, he’s ready,” Lisanne said.

Crusoe agreed. “Tommy, it’s time for you to meet the other trees of the forest. It’s time for you to become one of us.”

Tommy took a couple steps back.

“Are you ready?” Lisanne said.

“Yes,” Tommy said.

“Then close your eyes.”

Tommy’s slowly lowered his eyelids. His world was dark, but he could feel the air changing. He could taste it, the metallic flavor of the air. The earth started to shake violently. He fell on his side but kept his eyes squeezed shut.”

“Keep your eyes closed,” Lisanne said. At least it sounded like her voice except a little deeper and harder to understand.

“I am!” Tommy said.

But Tommy could only keep them closed for so long. After several seconds he stole a peek and instantly wished he didn’t. The trees were turning into the nefarious creatures that haunted him earlier. Except, this time, Crusoe was slowly descending into the earth. Lisanne shot up into the sky above the clouds and not a moment later did every tree in the forest follow her lead, shooting up into the sky like thousands of loosed arrows. Tommy watched as flames shot up from the spot Crusoe once resided. The brilliant flames licked the air, searching for something to burn. Tommy was terrified. The fear crept over him like it did when he would fall in a dream. That brief moment you experience an ethereal terror of horrible, unexplainable suffering that paralyzes every muscle, freezes every bone, and electrifies every last nerve in your body.

It was like being tied at each limb, watching the horsemen ride off in every direction as the coiled ropes grow smaller and smaller, moments before reckoning.

Tommy shrank into the fetal position and placed his thumb in his mouth. From all around him thick black branches sprang up high enough to cast a shadow that consumed him in complete darkness. The branches looked to have deep scars spread like wicked tattoos all over their exterior where red liquid flowed like hundreds of tiny rivers. The monstrous branches then began to twist and weave together like rope before falling onto Tommy, forming a heinous sight to behold. The black branches meshed together into a single organism; rhythmically pulsating, its surface boasting patches of random growth like a demonic atlas.

Those hungry flames pounced on this organic spawn of the earth, consuming it like a feast to a starved man. As soon as these flames engulfed its prey, the structure sank back into the depths of the earth, leaving behind nothing but a single violet lotus standing all on its lonesome like an erected flag on a battlefield.

Rebirth

“Tommy,” Lisanne said. “Tommy, can you hear me?”

Tommy felt like he was being pulled up from the ocean floor, escaping a great pressure.

“Tommy, look! Hurry!” Lisanne said.

Instantly, Tommy felt weightless; every part of him instantly aware of every sound, every smell, and every thought to ever be conceived. He felt great power emanating all around him. He witnessed a sunrise that seemed imaginary. It’s magnificence striking enough to induce deep feelings of anguish and sorrow at the beauty not ever to exist through the eyes of mortal men. His sympathy would soon diminish, for it was irrelevant to Tommy.

“What do you see, Tommy?” asked Lisanne.

“I… I don’t know. I don’t know yet, Lisanne. I’m just afraid forever might not be long enough.

Phantasmagoria

Author’s Note:

All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

 Introduction

 

You’re about to read a short story describing one girls trek from one state to the next in an attempt to chase her dreams and fully harness her creativity.

She grew up in the Pacific Northwest. More specifically, Washington State. Rainy, dreary, unpredictable Washington. After graduation, her life was beginning to plateau. For some reason, she just couldn’t break past these imaginary barriers that were set before her. What was she to do? In a panic, she gathered a few friends together and suggested they move. To where? They asked.

Portland.

It would be perfect.

However, preliminary plans were made and broken. It wouldn’t be until much later that they would pack their bags and spend a weekend down and stay with another friend who lived there.

And so they went.

Upon their return, realities were checked. They were checked so hard that their hearts were crushed; its smooth fragments melting into the cracks of their now fractured souls.

Coming home didn’t feel like coming home. It felt like returning to a house of horrors with an ominous darkness that seemed to have a face glaring back at her. She didn’t want to be here, but she had nowhere else to go. Portland was ready for her, but she wasn’t ready for Portland.

Some time later, after spending a great deal of time in this treacherous place, she adapted to her surroundings, becoming one with all that she once despised. How could this have possibly happened? Well, she wasn’t aware it was happening. She thought it was maturity easing her hate. But it wasn’t. It was her flaws and vulnerabilities in disguise holding her back.

However, there is no such evil that cannot be overcome by love. And love is often accompanied by passion. And that passion holds her purpose. And her purpose was bigger than she, thus prevailing over her reluctant mind.

And so our story begins.

M. Williams, Winter 2013

Departure

I boarded the 8am train to Portland and began searching for my seat. 12D. I spotted 9A and 10B on my right and to my left was 12D; a window seat. I packed my suitcase into the space above and settled the backpack in my lap.

I glanced out the frosted window through streaks of water left behind by the fresh rain, watching trees sway in the wind like a pendulum moving in slow motion.

I barely got any sleep lastnight and my head was throbbing, eyes aching. I closed them and used my thumb and index finger to gently massage them. It slightly dulled the pain causing temporary relief. I began thinking of the night before and how much I cried. I was such a whiny bitch. I couldn’t help it though. It’s so sad leaving my sister behind. She needs me. She’s still so young and naïve; she needs her older sister to help her through life. And she’s right in the middle of breaking up with her boyfriend which doesn’t make things any easier. I let out a soft sigh. I’d never seen her as happy as she was with him and now all that has temporarily gone to shit. I’m just glad her and I grew really close this past year. Something I had only dreamt of happening.

Mom dad both think it was incredibly stupid of me to move out. But they’re not me. And though what they say and do is with honest intentions, I’m a grown-ass woman who can make her own choices.

The train finally started to move. Slowly it crept forward, gaining more and more speed. I felt the steady vibrations from the wheels gliding across the tracks coarse through my body. It reminded me of being soaked in a nice, steamy hot tub.

I watched as the city grew smaller and smaller until my neck got tired and I stopped looking back. I smiled at the fact that I was finally saying goodbye to that place. My departure was way past due.

The land out here was hideous. Ridden with abandoned warehouses, dismantled fences, a few totaled cars, and no grass, just dirt with patches of water spread throughout. How did this place get so ugly? Surely, there was once a time when it was a bit easier on the eyes and didn’t appear to be the aftermath of a nuclear strike.

I felt a large lump in my throat. I’ve lived in this area all my life and I’ve ridden down these very same tracks when I’d go down to see Sydney and yet, this entire area was unfamiliar to me. It was completely new. The thought was disturbing.

I looked at one of the abandoned warehouses in the distance. The roof was caved in on one end. All the windows were busted out. And that’s when I spotted him. A man was standing behind one of the windows completely motionless. I just stared at him. Even at this distance, I could feel his eyes on me. He was watching me.

It must be a homeless man, I thought. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out homeless people sought refuge here. This is paradise compared to sleeping in gutters and being spit on by assholes walking by.

I looked back but the man was gone. A sudden icy wave went through my body down to my toes causing the hairs on my arm and neck to stand up, and my back grew stiff. I then felt compelled to scan the train car I was in.

Nobody was sitting next to me. An older man behind me was sitting alone. A young couple across the aisle. A little boy and girl sitting near a blonde woman who I assumed was their mother.

And that was it. Well, that was everyone I could see.

I sat back in my seat and tried to slow my breathing which became an exercise in futility. I didn’t like this feeling at all. Slowly, I was filling up with dread and I felt nauseous. Then my body started to shake and tremble before I was nearly thrown from my seat.

The train… the train was going off the tracks.

I couldn’t make sense of what was going on around me; it was all happening so fast. Bags flew across the aisle every which way. The little girl was thrown to the back of the car and I heard her smack into the glass sliding door. The sound was awful. It was like a sopping wet towel slapping the floor. I held onto the small headrest of the seat in front of me in a deathgrip and squeezed my eyes shut. I was going to die right here on this train. Oh fuck. Oh fuck.

I screamed.

The train shook violently more and more. I could hear cries and shrieks so loud I swore my eardrums were going to burst. I also heard loud pounding from behind me and when I looked back I saw the old man slamming his fists against the glass sliding door. Pointless, I thought.

And suddenly, it all stopped.

I stole a quick glance out the window and couldn’t believe what I saw. We were airborne. The train was fucking airborne. As we made our descent, I shut my eyes and screamed one last time.

 

Arrival

My head felt like it was going to explode. I couldn’t move. I slowly opened my eyes and felt the cool, light rain pepper my body as I stared up at the grey sky. I could hear someone groaning nearby, but I was too afraid to move. My bones felt frozen and my back glued to the mud.

“Help!” someone yelled. “Help me please!”

It was a man’s voice; raspy and baritone. In my head I told the man I could help. I told him everything was going to be ok and help was on its way. But still I lay in the mud helpless as ever. I started to hear what sounded like someone running towards me, their feet slapping the mud quickly and growing louder each second. Please help us, I thought to myself.

“Oh thank god,” the man said. “I’m so glad–wait, what the… What the fuck?! Get away from me!”

I heard a grunt and the man scream. A scream silenced soon after what sounded like popping and cracking. Now he was crying.

“Oh god please. Please help me. No, no!”

And then I could hear what sounded like slurping and crunching, the man crying and screaming. More crunches and chewing. Oh. My. God. Was he being..eaten? No. No fucking way.

His cries suddenly grew silent.

I felt tears stream down my face, but didn’t feel sad. I was scared to death. It began raining a little harder and it got a little colder so I closed my eyes. I couldn’t help but briefly wonder if the life I lived was enough. What was I leaving behind?

A few funny stories and pieces of art, some friends that thought they knew me but really didn’t, and maybe a few broken hearts and failed romances but nothing that lasted. I already felt dead. So maybe dying would be a little better.

I felt something hot against my neck. I opened my eyes and looked to my left and found myself staring into the dark blue eyes of some hideous creature. Its foul breath came at me in hot waves and made me gag. I turned away from it only to see another one of them standing over me, shaking and smiling.

It looked nearly human. It had a torso, arms, hair, and it stood on two bony legs. Its nose protruded from its face like an upside down coat hanger. But its eyes weren’t human, I knew that. They were large and round just like 50 cent pieces. And its mouth hung open revealing a set of sharp yellow canine teeth. The thing just looked down at me, shaking violently as it let out a low groan.

I then felt something on my back. One of them was lifting me off the ground with its bony arms. It was strong, too. Two more creatures appeared in front of me and I felt long, cold fingers drag down my back, cold fingers sliding underneath my shirt and tearing at my pants. I closed my eyes, weeping uncontrollably; screaming until I tasted blood. One of them grabbed my head in its hands and looked into my eyes, closely examining me before a long, thick, purple tongue rolled out of its mouth. I felt it slide across my face, down my neck and in my ear. I yelled at them to stop when the tongue slithered into my mouth. I tried to cry once I could feel hair and skin being pulled from my scalp.

As fingers clawed at my flesh, and teeth nibbled at my fingers and toes, tongues caressing every bit of my now exposed body, making their way into every orifice, I wondered why this had to happen to me.

What did I do to deserve this? What, in my entire lifetime, could I have possibly done to warrant such pain and torment? And that’s when I was absolutely certain there was no god. And if there is one, he’s twisted as fuck.

As I felt the last of the fingers on my right hand get chewed away, I threw up all over myself. This excited the creatures and they started panting and licking it off my body which made me vomit again, this time all over one of the creatures. It laughed hysterically and smeared it all over himself while another creature started to lick it off.

I became dead weight as pieces of my flesh were ripped and clawed and chewed off. My world went dark as flashes of red and blue and yellow danced in the darkness with me.

I felt enraptured.

The ice cold rain, the searing pain of my swollen, torn muscle tissue, the stimulation I received from my exposed nerve endings. I felt my back hit the mud once again. Did they drop me? Was I just a torso now? I kept bleeding and bleeding and the pool of blood crept over me and I felt the ground melt and become softer and softer as I began making my descent into the earth. I tried to open my eyes one last time, but I couldn’t. All I could see were the flashing lights dancing with me in the darkness.