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Let's talk a Finnish icon: The Ismo Alanko primer

2020.09.19 17:52 creatinsanivity Let's talk a Finnish icon: The Ismo Alanko primer

I was challenged into writing a primer on one of Finland's primary songwriters of all time by u/Zhanteimi at the LetsTalkMusic discord. So here's an album-by-album runthrough of his career!
Context
No artist's career begins with the first album, so naturally nor did Alanko's. Long story short, he was born in a highly artistic family (mother a poet, all siblings musicians), picked cello as his instrument of choice, found rock (especially the Hurriganes debut) and picked a guitar, wrote his first song 'Suck and Fuck All Night Long' (no recordings of this exist, but apparently one of his bands named itself after the song), and formed a number of bands with varying levels of success. His most succesful pre-Hassisen Kone band was a prog band called Sight, which got on the second place in the prog section of Finnish Rock Championship competition (in 1977 or 1978). After he finished high school in the spring of 1979, he moved to Stockholm for the summer. This turned out to be the decision that became the catalyst for huge parts of his career, including...
Hassisen Kone - Täältä tullaan Venäjä
While in Stockholm, Alanko caught wind of a new wave of rock beginning in Finland. A breath of fresh air in the previously stale rock scene. He returned to Joensuu and put together a band from his bandmates from Sight (Reijo Heiskanen and Harri Kinnunen), and Harri's then 17-year-old brother Jussi. They eventually named the band Hassisen Kone, after a sewing machine store in town (the deeply religious shopkeeper was not amused).
The band recorded an album-length demo in 1979 and were signed on a label relatively quickly. They were also qualified to enter the 1980 Finnish Rock Championship competition (even though the judges nearly disqualified them, for they thought they might be professional musicians performing under fake names), which they won, gaining reputation preceding the recording of their debut album.
In August of 1980, the band released Täältä tullaan Venäjä. Propelled by arguably the biggest hit single in Alanko's career, Rappiolla [which was hilariously covered by Metallica recently (which was spontaneously responded to by Ismo Alanko himself)], the album became a smash hit. The album provides variety from straight-up new wave punk to talkingheadsian grooves, schlager punk, simplified swing jazz, ska-infused rock, to whatever you'd categorise 'Viimeinen rock ennen aivokuolemaa' as. It's an ambitious yet consistent whole but, in my opinion, the weakest of the three Hassisen Kone albums. The youthful anarchic feel it has can be refreshing every now and then, but this burst of energy from an obviously young (only two of the bandmembers even in their 20s, band only half a year old) band is redirected better on the follow-up.
Hassisen Kone - Rumat sävelet
Following the release of their debut, the band found themselves in a position that many acts today would both fear and envy: they played hundreds of gigs in the second half of 1980 and the first half of 1981. The gruesome touring around the country took a toll on the young band, but that's only barely comparable to the toll that the audience took on them. For example, as time went by, the band grew tired of the audience drunkenly demanding 'Rappiolla', so they stopped playing the song altogether. This time of maturing and growing more and more cynical reflected on their sophomore effort.
Rumat sävelet should not necessarily be described as bleak per se, but it is certainly darker, tighter, and more mature than the band's debut. The band tackles sounds ranging from quasi-prog expression to post-punk, punk, psychobilly, and they take the talkingheadsian qualities into a sharper direction. The lyrics touch upon issues like love, exploitation, and sex (it's curious to think that probably the most explicit Finnish song about sex before this album was about "curly armpit hair", while Alanko dares to sing about penetration itself). I have to admit that I have a bit of a bias when it comes to this one though, as it's undoubtedly my favourite album of all time.
Hassisen Kone - Harsoinen teräs (and High Tension Wire)
In 1981, the band participated on a riverboat tour with a couple of other punk acts. During this tour, the bassist broke (drugs), Alanko met "Safka" Pekkonen, and the band was generally put under huge stress as the diet consisting mainly of alcohol began burning them down and their every move was documented by either film makers Mika and Aki Kaurismäki or the columnist documenting the tour for a zine. Despite all this, some of the better live recordings of the band come from this tour, and both the live album and the Kaurismäki documentary are worth digging up for the music.
After the tour, the band expanded into a septet with the addition of a keyboardist (Pekkonen), a saxophonist (Antti Seppo), and a percussionist (Hannu Porkka). The final form of the band was shaped during the rehearsals by the departure of guitarist Heiskanen, who was replaced by the guitar wizard Jukka Orma.
Released in March of 1982, Harsoinen teräs is the band's most artistically ambitious work. It's an album combining the band's prog leanings seamlessly with the band's new wave leanings, a polished whole that takes cues from I don't even know where. Reggae at least on a couple of tracks, prog and new wave on most, but the general sound is unlike anything I've ever encountered. The album was re-recorded in English as High Tension Wire later on in the year, after a tour had slightly tightened the band's sound. The decision to do so apparently came after the decision to disband the band, which makes it a very baffling addition to Hassisen Kone's discography. You'd think that they'd release an album in English as an attempt to break into international markets, right?
Sielun Veljet - Sielun Veljet
After Hassisen Kone was disbanded (in August 1982), Alanko had a schlager rock project that eventually turned into Sielun Veljet by December. The band was comprised of Alanko, Orma, a drummer veteran Alf Forsman, Alanko's Stockholm contact Jouko Hohko on bass, Vinski Viholainen doing lighting, and a future cult legend Jouni Mömmö doing "weird noises".
Sielun Veljet were signed in early 1983, but they refused to record a studio album because Viholainen's lighting work wouldn't show in a studio recording. Instead, as a compromise, they agreed on recording a live album where "the lighting would affect the ambiance". They set out to do this on a tour they began on March, planning on recording the first show and the last one. However, fate interfered and Orma accidentally cut tendons from his fingers during the tour while cutting bread, which made the recordings from the last show basically unusable due to his difficulties in adjusting to the situation (a very punk move to finish the tour even with torn tendons, by the way).
The live album is punk/post-punk goodness. It's noisy, no-wavey rock that really shows how the band took all the drugs in the process of writing these harsh, repetitive songs. It also shows that Alanko wished to abandon messing around with intricate compositions in favour of a more stripped and primal expression.
Sielun Veljet - Lapset
In summer of 1983, the band brightened up a bit to record this odd EP in a style following directly from the debut. It's angular and distorted, yet the melodies are more melodic and jamming less bleak. It's also the home of the only a capella punk song I've ever heard.
Sielun Veljet - Hei soturit
In 1984, Sielun Veljet took their first coherent step toward a pop/rock idiom with their first studio album. Hei soturit is the awkward outlier between the band's grimy punk era and commercial rock era. It feels like a punk band working with a producer who doesn't understand punk, but even the clumsy production doesn't entirely hide the fact that some of these songs are absolutely iconic. From punk to garage rock, general oddness, and flirting even with metal, this selection of songs does provide good variety for anyone digging deeper in Alanko's body of work.
Sielun Veljet - L'amourha
The Sielun Veljet breakthrough album! The beginning of their rock era of albums, an only mildly angular affair with anthemic choruses and a muscular production. It was recorded after the band had toured all over Europe, honing their sound and Alanko finding a lot to say about international affairs and the human condition.
There are a plenty of anecdotes from the time of release of this album. The song 'On mulla unelma' was written by Alanko in Spain, when he was recovering from a disease (can't remember which one. Dysentery?) and bitter about nationalism, and it caused quite a scandal when the band unexpectedly debuted it on live television. They performed an impromptu Red Riding Hood play on their album release party instead of playing music. One of the members went missing in Russia for days after the band found a corpse. All of their instruments were stolen in Spain. There'd a lot to unpack from 1984-5 alone.
Sielun Veljet - Kuka teki huorin
The follow-up to L'amourha takes the band to a funkier place. It's a minor downgrade from the previous effort, a slightly directionless and overpolished effort that has diverse variety from RHCP-like funk rock to tango-infused rock, tribal chants, and what's essentially watered down imitation of their earlier work. It's an easy album to criticise, yet I don't find ever to be outright bad. A lot of it is extremely forgettable though
L'amourder - Ritual and Shit-Hot
Sielun Veljet recorded a bunch of their songs in English as L'amourder. Most of them follow the originals very closely, but there are a few surprises. The biggest change is on the translation of 'Tuulelta vastauksen saan', which has been turned into a cover of Bob Dylan's 'Blowin' in the Wind'.
Sielun Veljet - Suomi - Finland
Suomi - Finland begins the last era of the band, as this album brings more acoustic instruments to the mix and begins to flirt with psychedelia in a way that will culminate on the follow-up. It feels like a breaking point for the band, as it sprawls on multiple directions at once, the musicians seemingly having lost focus. It feels like a band slowly drifring apart, yet it remains consistently captivating as the different influences come together in this chaotic work.
"Various Artists" - Onnenpyörä
Sielun Veljet performed under a number of false identities on their Onnenpyörä-tour, four of which make an appearance on this recording. All of these are cover bands of sorts, and each one of them had a different repertoire of songs they played on these wildly differing sets. The most noteworthy of these personae are the pavillion dance band Kullervo Kivi ja Gehenna-yhtye and the rock band Leputation of the Slaves, the two having the most songs on the record.
Sielun Veljet - Softwood Music Under Slow Pillars
Who would have thought that the noisy punk band in 1983 would eventually release what could be called a psychedelic flamenco album in 1989? Many factors come together here, as the band continues on their effort to sell their music internationally by making the biggest left turn in memory. Orma's fascination with flamenco combines here with influences Alanko picked up in India and what could be called a somewhat logical progression from the budding psychedelia of Suomi - Finland. It's a weird album, that's for sure. A bit inconsistent, but easily among the strangest albums I've ever heard.
Ismo Alanko - Kun Suomi putos puusta
In 1990, Alanko found himself in a situation where Sielun Veljet had almost run its course and he could finally start building a solo career. He recorded this solo debut as a quasi-concept album about rural flight, combining the various interest he wasn't able to pursue with the band into a unique singesongwriter album of sorts. It's a classic album and, in some ways, an ideal entry point into Alanko's work as it feels like it's his personal expression in its purest form.
The music on the album sounds mainly like pop rock of sorts, but it also takes cues from melancholic singesongwriter stuff, joyous showtunes, post-punk akin to Nick Cave's work, and some field recording experiments. It finds a good balance between artistic ambition and catchiness, and it's home to some of the most iconic tracks in Ismo Alanko songbook.
Sielun Veljet - Musta laatikko
Do you know Tom Waits' Orphans? This one is kind of like that. Three discs filled with random stuff recorded over years.
The first disc, "Muistinmenetys", is one third a new studio album (very weird new direction to take, something that feels like a cross between chill hippie jamming and 80s dance pop), one third music from some production, and one third short excerpts from live performances. The second disc, "Taudinkuva", is mainly live performances of late 80s Sielun Veljet songs, Tuomari Nurmio covers, and some other oddities. And finally, the third disc, "Isältä pojalle", is a full pavillion dance set, the band LARPing as a suave and jazzy house band playing waltz, tango, schlager, and anything that's really expected of them.
This album is definitely a skippable one, but there are a few gems that an Ismo Alanko fan might get a lot out of. The flamenco pieces are cool, the Tuomari Nurmio covers are nice (more about those later), and that pavillion dance set is unexpectedly fun, especially if you're not already familiar with the tradition.
Ismo Alanko - Jäätyneitä lauluja
Alanko goes electronic! This album was originally lauded as cutting edge and a sign of significant artistic growth, but it has definitely fallen in popularity over the years. It sounds extremely like a product of its time, so if you like non-industrial synthpop-y rock from 90s, this is exactly your thing. Overall, it's still very surprising how many Alanko live staples come from this album though, and how some of his live bands have improved on all of them.
Ismo Alanko - Taiteilijaelämää
If someone doesn't think that Kun Suomi putos puusta is Alanko's magnum opus, they usually pick this one. Taiteilijaelämää feels like a combination of the first two solo albums (acoustic, electric, and electronic joining hands in harmony), but brought into the mid-90s rock idiom. The result is an interesting album that lacks real highs but remains consistently accessible, and the one Ismo Alanko work I've heard to have resonated with Beck fans for some reason.
Ismo Alanko - I-r-t-i
I made the mistake of learning that this album was written in only two weeks (because Alanko wanted to test himself), and now that's all I can think of while listening to it. This does feel halfbaked. The accessible rock sound it has is underproduced and covers up lazy songwriting more than once. That said, Alanko has later on proven that some of these songs can be absolutely amazing live, and the demo-like quality many of these tracks have can be seen as a feature instead of a bug. Pushing its flaws aside, I feel that it is underappreciated as an album, and feel like its high points deserve more attention.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Pulu
Säätiö was an interesting group. I'm honestly still a bit unclear whether they should be considered Alanko's backing band, a band that just happened to capitalise on his name, or a fullblown collective of musicians. Alanko's statements concerning the group together with the changing lineups on Säätiö albums both point to all three options. What I do know is that the band has two distinct eras, the first one kickstarted by Pulu.
I genuinely believe that the first iterarion of Säätiö is the most important band Alanko worked with. The amount of pure talent in that band is staggering with Jussi Kinnunen (Hassisen Kone) on bass, Teho Majamäki (HC Andersen, Tapani Rinne, Ismo Alanko Teholla) on percussion, Kimmo Pohjonen (you will want to check his solo stuff) on accordion, and Marko Timonen (Värttinä, Tuomari Nurmio) on drums giving Alanko's songwriting a fascinating folk rock spin, reeking of schlager and eastern mysticism. Pulu is an album that seeps nostalgia, is radical enough to upset traditional folk nerds, is accessible enough to have produced multiple Alanko live staples, and is significant enough a twist on Alanko's tropes to sound fresh even in his eclectic body of work. Yet, I feel like it's so self-referential that I feel like recommending it as anyone's first Ismo Alanko album could be a mistake.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Luonnossa
Säätiö playing acoustic renditions from the entire Ismo Alanko songbook, from Täältä tullaan Venäjä to Pulu. An exciting set, and definitely one of the best live albums I've ever heard. The band reworks this wide variety of songs into captivating folk rock, transforming the music into forms that defy expectations. There are some duds though, but not all fan favourites can sound great with just one band.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Sisäinen solarium
This is possibly the weirdest Ismo Alanko album to this date. It continues with nearly the same lineup as on Pulu, but takes the music in a radically new direction, exploring what modernised folk could be rather than wallowing on nostalgia. This means updating the largely acoustic instrumentation with both electric and electronic instruments, and creating an unpredictable tapestry of music with influences that are surprisingly difficult to pinpoint. Some say this kind of experimentation cheapens traditional folk (which is something I can agree with regarding some songs on this album), but I'm not sure if such a clearcut statement can be made of the full album. It's certainly aiming for a sound of its own.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Hallanvaara
This is where Säätiö's status as a band becomes complicated. There's absolutely no reason to call this anything but an Ismo Alanko solo album, so marketing it as an Ismo Alanko Säätiö album is baffling to say the least. I mean, the only constants on this album are Alanko himself, the producemulti-instrumentalist Riku Mattila, and various symphonic elements (I don't want to downplay the work the symphonic orchestra and the string section do on this album, but they have been used quite haphazardly). There are three members from the previous Säätiö albums involved in this project: Marko Timonen on nine tracks, Samuli Laiho on seven tracks, and Kimmo Pohjonen on one track. In addition to this, there's the bassist of the next iteration of Säätiö, Jarno Karjalainen, on six tracks. Thus, there are Säätiö band members playing on the majority of these tracks, but never as a full band.
That all being said, I believe this to be the best Säätiö album. The melancholic pieces are beautifully fragile, the pop tracks are catchy, the massive songs are massive, and the atmospheric pieces are chillingly well-arranged. And even the weaker songs here are excellent live, making this album probably the richest one to mine for a live set of any kind.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Elävää musiikkia
Honestly, this feels like a bit of a throwaway live album. On one hand, these rock renditions of a great setlist of songs are unique but, on the other hand, none of these performances improve on the studio recordings. 'Kansallispäivä' and 'Julkinen eläin' come really close though, both being sharper and meaner than the 80s versions.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Minä ja pojat
The first album with the second iteration of the band. Fuzzy rock in similar vein to Smashing Pumpkins and their kin, but played through the lense of Alanko's style of songwriting. It's never as hard-hitting or catchy as an album by a great rock band would be -- all of the songs soften up during the chorus -- but the youthful and slightly naivistic touch is welcome after a string of artistically ambitious albums. That said, I'm only attached to a single song on the whole album, which is definitely not a good sign.
Ismo Alanko Säätiö - Ruuhkainen taivas
The second (and last) studio album of the second iteration of Säätiö is a different beast than the first one, taking the rock approach to a slightly more complex direction. It's more mature and chromatic than the first album, yet I personally find it to sound slightly less inspired. However, at the same time, it does have more tracks that I would consider keepers and the general sound is harder to define. Thus, it's definitely a divisive album, conflicting.
I'm not sure how to describe the sound of this album. It's unmistakeably early 2000s rock, sounding like an average Finnish rock band from the era, yet the songwriting and the production also remind me of the band Wire out of all things. It's a digestible alternative/indie rock sound, whenever it doesn't abruptly go in a new direction.
Sielun Veljet - Otteita Tuomari Nurmion laulukirjasta
Remember those random Tuomari Nurmio covers on Musta Laatikko? Turns out, Sielun Veljet recorded a full album of those in (I assume) late 80s. They didn't end up using those recordings for anything, so they were packed away and stored somewhere. Years went by and a good portion of those recordings were destroyed due to poor storing conditions, but someone was eventually inspired to put the surviving songs to good use.
You'll be in for a treat, if you like Sielun Veljet and have never heard anything by Tuomari Nurmio. Most of these covers are originally from Nurmio's early 80s albums, his strange new wave turned into the angular rock Sielun Veljet perfected. Some of these songs only barely work, some sound like Sielun Veljet originals, but most are just serviceable covers. It's still a good album though.
Ismo Alanko Teholla - Blanco spirituals
After putting Säätiö on hold (perhaps indefinitely), Alanko joined forces with Teho Majamäki, the first iteration Säätiö percussionist. Together they stripped down a number of Ismo Alanko songbook staples to a form they could perform as a duo, essentially bringing the strengths of Alanko's live performances alone together with the strengths of him performing with a small ensemble. This endeavour proved succesful, so the two recorded two albums of original music as well.
The music of Blanco spirituals is surprisingly full. The two musicians fill space well, with Alanko singing and playing chord instruments (mainly guitar and piano), while Majamäki stretches himself as thin as possible, working a drumset, vibes, an array of percussions, an oscillating delay pedal, and singing backing vocals. It's usually at least two of those at the same time, often three. Him working in a live environment is a sight to behold.
This is honestly one of my favourite Ismo Alanko albums. The stripped down arrangements bring the most out of Alanko's songwriting. The selection of songs highlight very different sides of his style, from theatrical piano ballads to singalong acoustic guitar romps, silly pop songs, and trance-inducing rock. It's by no means a perfect album, but these simple songs all work in one way or another.
Sielun Veljet - Kansan parissa (1-4)
Archival live recordings of sets recorded around 1989-1991. The first one is a typical Sielun Veljet set, the second one filled with Tuomari Nurmio covers, the third one is material from Softwood Music Under Slow Pillars, and the fourth one is a mix of subtle experimentation, new tracks, and deep cuts. Quite a comprehensive collection of live music. However, only few tracks are really worth keeping, including the electrifying high-tempo performance of 'Lammassusi' and the prototypical version of Alanko's 'Don Quiote'.
Ismo Alanko Teholla - Onnellisuus
The simplicity of the previous album is gone, replaced by a polished and highly produced pop sound. The DIY duo sound gives way to a more layered style, where synths, samples, and doubled vocals are added to the band's sound. Acoustic instruments are largely replaced by electric guitars and synths, turning the folksy garage band sound to a sleak and radio-friendly beast. If the fact that I just phrased the same exact thing in three ways didn't clue you in yet, I'm not particularly fond of this change of direction. However, I've seen this ridiculously often called the best Ismo Alanko album since the 90s, so it does appeal to the masses.
If you like 2010s pop and are looking for a decent gateway to Alanko's music, this could be the album to start with. It's accessible.
Hassisen Kone - 20 vuotta myöhemmin
Hassisen Kone had a reunion in 2000. They played a show that was both filmed and recorded. It's an interesting document of musicians playing music they wrote 20 years earlier. However, it ultimately sounds a bit tired compared to both the tight playing on their studio recordings and the energy levels on their 80s live recordings.
Ismo Alanko - Maailmanlopun sushibaari
Remember when I said that most pick between Kun Suomi putos puusta and Taiteilijaelämää as Alanko's magnum opus? Well, this is that one for me. I'm not saying that to imply that it would be his best album, but it's the album where he finally brings his disparate influences together in a coherent but eclectic way. If Kun Suomi putos puusta is where Alanko's artistic voice is at its purest, this is where it is at its maturest and most representative of the multi-faceted artist he has become during his career.
More or less incidentally, this is also Alanko's midlife crisis album. It's not entirely thematic -- who even knows what 'Kuusilmä' is about? -- but it does touch upon themes like growing old, dying, passing the torch, losing one's touch, and liking the colour grey. It's not quite on the nose, but you don't exactly have to dissect the lyrics to find those undercurrents.
So what does the album sound like? It's lighter than you'd imagine based on the central themes. There's rock, funk, subtle latin feel, a capella, pop, traditional folk, and even an ambitious rock opera about what sounds like a zombie apocalypse. It's fairly eclectic, making it a nice first solo album to release in nearly two decades.
Ismo Alanko - 33 1/3: Kolmannesvuosisata taiteilijaelämää
This is the Ismo Alanko live album I recommend people to start with. Are these performances as exciting as their studio versions? No. But I'd argue that they don't have to be. The main strength this recording has is its uniformity. The songs are played in a generic rock band style, but it doesn't change the fact that the setlist is good and diverse. There's no compilation that would dive this deep in such a digestible manner. Essentially, this is the middle-of-the-road pick that gives an excellent cursory look into a prolific artist's entire body of work (up until 2013).
Ismo Alanko - Ismo Kullervo Alanko
Considering how introspective and self-reflective the previous album is, it's surprising that Alanko decided to name this one after himself. It works though. The songs are produced sparser and airier than on any other Ismo Alanko album, making the music feel intimate and almost confessional. It feels like you're sitting in the same room with him, as he opens up to you. Amazingly produced album.
Ismo Alanko - Pannaanko pakasteet pieneen pussiin?
To be frank, I don't think this EP is an essential release. It's noteworthy for the modern hobo blues feel it has, and for having one of the very few covers Alanko has recorded so far, but none of these songs have an iconic feel to them. The best I can say about it is that none of the songs are bad, but neither are they memorable.
Ismo Alanko - Yksin Vanhalla
I wish more band-focused artists performed live alone every now and then. An arrangement stripped down to just vocals and an instrument (in Alanko's case, usually acoustic guitar, piano, or cello) turns every song into something entirely different. However, the lyrics grow in significance as instruments are dropped, so your mileage may vary with this one. I still enjoy it though.
Pohjonen Alanko - Northern Lowland
Alanko collaborates with Kimmo Pohjonen and Tuomas Norvio to bring us an electronic neon-shamanic album. Primal chants and vocalisations blending together with beats ranging from harsh to chill and breakbeat-y. It's a fascinating EP, even if highly gimmicky and lacking a sense of direction. Besides, this stuff will always be better live than on a studio recording.
Ismo Alanko - Minä halusin olla niin kuin Beethoven
And finally, the latest Ismo Alanko album, where he takes yet another left turn. This one was mainly recorded by Alanko alone in a studio, but eventually a drummer and a keyboardist were brought in to round up the sound. And what a sound it is! Youthful indie rock with a production that's stuck somewhere between the 00s and the 80s. If it were not for 58-year-old Alanko's vocals and eccentric riffing, I could very well believe this to be a debut album by ambitious 20-somethings.
Summary
Since Alanko's full albums are not readily available on many countries (especially the US), I'll provide a summary that's somewhere between a longish TL;DR, a series of recommendations, and a quick-glance overview of his career.
Album:: Täältä tullaan Venäjä (1980) [new wave punk] Representative track: Rock ehkäisyvälineitä vastaan (a bouncy high-tempo punk track)
Album: Rumat sävelet (1981) [new wave/post-punk] Representative track: Jurot nuorisojulkkikset (a gloomy post-punk-infused rock track)
Album: Harsoinen teräs (1982) [new wave/progressive rock] Representative track: Kupla kimaltaa (a well-flowing new wave track with a progressive song structure)
Album: Sielun Veljet (1983) [punk/post-punk] Representative track: Pieni pää (a noisy punk track with groovy tribal drumming and metallic guitar playing)
Album: Lapset (1983) [punk/post-punk] Representative track: Elintaso (an angular punk track)
Album: Hei soturit (1984) [post-punk/alternative rock] Representative track: Tää on tää (a straightforward punk track with a catchy hook)
Album: L'amourha (1985) [post-punk/hard rock] Representative track: Peltirumpu (a hard-hitting rock song with dissonant guitars)
Album: Kuka teki huorin (1986) [post-punk/funk rock] Representative track: Kristallilapsia (a funk rock track with screechy guitars and an unfunky bassline)
Album: Suomi - Finland (1988) [post-punk/psychedelic rock] Representative track: Totuus vai tequila (a ferocious folk punk track)
Album: Softwood Music Under Slow Pillars (1989) [psychedelic rock/flamenco] Representative track: Life is a Cobra (a psychedelic track combining flamenco rhythms and Indian string sections)
Album: Kun Suomi putos puusta (1990) [singesongwriter] Representative track: Kun Suomi putos puusta (a gentle organ-led track with subtle folk influence and field recordings)
Album: Jäätyneitä lauluja (1993) [electronic rock] Representative track: Pornografiaa (a slightly industrial-tinged electronic rock track)
Album: Taiteilijaelämää (1995) [art rock] Representative track: Nuorena syntynyt (a 90s sounding rock track with a freeform looseness to it)
Album: I-r-t-i (1996) [alternative rock] Representative track: Kriisistä kriisiin (a rock track with a steady dance pulse on the actual rock sections)
Album: Pulu (1998) [folk rock/art rock] Representative track: Rakkaus on ruma sana (a track with pseudo-shamanistic verses and catchy choruses)
Album: Sisäinen solarium (2000) (art pop/folk rock) Representative track: Kirskainen hyvätyinen (a largely electronic and pulsing track that feels one part a strange rock experiment and one part a traditional Finnish folk song)
Album: Hallanvaara (2002) (art pop/symphonic rock) Representative track: Paratiisin puu (a smooth pop track with significant classical influence)
Album: Minä ja pojat (2004) [alternative rock] Representative track: Joensuu (a straightforward and fuzzy rock song)
Album: Ruuhkainen taivas (2006) [alternative rock) Representative track: Paskiainen (a rock track alternating between manic psychobilly and catchy radio rock)
Album: Blanco spirituals (2008) [minimalistic art pop] Representative track: Päästänkö irti (an acoustic rock track with an interesting chord sequence)
Album: Onnellisuus (2010) [art pop] Representative track: Onnellisuus (a danceable and atmospheric pop track)
Album: Maailmanlopun sushibaari (2013) [alternative rock] Representative track: Vanha nuori (an accessible pop track with a funky brass section and theatrical choruses)
Album: Ismo Kullervo Alanko (2015) [art pop/singesongwriter] Representative track: Lintuperspektiivi (a melancholic and sparsely produced track with airy ambience)
Album: Northern Lowland (2018) [glitch hop-y tribal electronic music] Representative track: Northern Lowland (a track with primal chanting and glitchy beats)
Album: Minä halusin olla niin kuin Beethoven (2019) [80s flavour indie rock] Representative track: Transsioletettu tanssi (a funky rock track with a somewhat generic 2000s rock chorus)
Discussion
What is your opinion on Ismo Alanko? I personally enjoy how prolific and eclectic he has been, and I find it a shame that most of his work has never left Finland. I can especially imagine punk fans easily getting into his 80s work.
submitted by creatinsanivity to LetsTalkMusic [link] [comments]


2020.09.16 21:55 riceisnice29 Looking for honest feedback on this first chapter [4000 words]

The Encyclopedia of Supernatural Organisms
Zombie virus
Automoton-Aeternativirus (Goemon & Montellbro 2017)
Overview Data Media Articles Maps Names
General: Automoton-Aeternativirus (Zombie virus) is the sole virus from a newly discovered viral phylum with two distinct strains. The airborne strain (vaccine, 2020) lies dormant in hosts until they die, whereas the bodily-fluid based strain actively kills the host body*. Once the host is dead, the virus will proliferate throughout the body; it will partially slow biological decomposition and reanimate the host to spread the virus through bodily transmission via violent physical contact. Destruction or severance of the brain is the only known way to end viral control. Host bodies of small enough size will not reanimate, instead forming into a mass of immobile, malignant tumors. There are two categories of host, able to be produced by both strains:
Category-1 (95% probability): The host body will retain its normal form, though progressive decomposition and a lack of complete motor control keeps movement at a walking speed.Category-2 (5% probability): The virus will form cancerous growths that can cause a variety of beneficial and detrimental effects for the host body. It is unknown what triggers this change. Ex: Growing extra limbs, increased stomach acid production, development of partial exo-skeletons.
*The sole known species immune to the Zombie virus are vampires
Chapter 1 – Natural Selection
Muhan ignored the cold, conditioned air swirling through the armored van; the tanned, burly muscles underneath his combat uniform held his body in place despite the constant rocking that rattled the vehicle. Fiery-bronze hair that extended past his ears and into a trimmed moustache and goatee shimmered in the electric-blue glow of a metal case seated beside him. Quietly, his stormy grey eyes read a book. The novel’s sleeve was a minimalist design of a crimson background with the seemingly handwritten title and author: Immovable: Staying True in Lifetimes of Change by Stratus Maridaem.
“So how do you like it Han?” A rumbling yet soothing voice hummed from above. Muhan tilted his eyes up to see the stare of two jet black pupils set against oceans of blood; a bony nose descended between them, whose shadow carved out a thin stretch of darkness across light-olive skin. Underneath was a wide, toothy smile punctuated by thin upper fangs which sat jovially upon Zackiren’s clasped hands.
“It’s okay so far actually,” Muhan replied with a bassy voice. “I didn’t think I’d like this based on the title.”
“Yes, well those of us who lived as far back as him do have much history. Some of it is bound to be worthy of recording.”
“Ha, not necessarily,” Muhan pointed a finger. “Plenty of slackers I know could waste twenty lifetimes doing nothing.”
“Be’n fair, ain’t really easy for many folks to musta up the motivation wit de world mashed up as it is now,” Kiara spoke out, sitting still as a rock and making faces of contrasting emotion as she adjusted and rechecked her sniper’s rifle with long, delicate fingers. The dark umber hue of her irises matched her skin tone, which beaded with goosebumps at the cold running up through her tidy braids.
“Damn it Kiki you know I’m talking about people I knew pre-outbreak,” Muhan groaned.
“And tings weren’t all chaka chaka inna world pre-ootbreak?” Kiara shook her head and sucked her teeth.
“What does chaka chaka mean?”
Can you not figure it out?”
Muhan knocked his head back against the van’s wall in thought, looking to Zackiren in obvious confusion.
“It means of poor quality or disorderly.”
“Much appreciated, how long have you known that?”
“Like 200 years. Picked it up sometime in the 18th Century. Very lovely lady taught me in exchange for some ‘magic’ blood and a tooth.”
Dat is disgusting,” Kiara stuck out her tongue. “Did she drink it?”
“Sure did. Luckily, vampire blood actually does have medical applications when consumed so the deal was proper and in good faith. Tooth not so much, but she just needed a new molar.”
“Could neva be me mon,” Kiara scrunched her broad nose. A knock rung from the front of the van, the metal divider slid open. In its rectangular frame was the focused, icy blue gaze of a man with a large, pointed nose. His lengthy, dark hair was parted down the middle, with a thick ponytail stretched out over his shoulder. Reddish-bronze skin stretched with the flickering of his nose. He sniffed the incoming air, analyzing it.
“We’re five minutes out. Prep your gear.” His voice was strong and rustic. “Also, I smell a Cat. 2. Probably multiple, hopefully not. Likely near the crash since intel didn’t say anything about them.”
“Tenk ya kindly, C-Wolf.” Kiara held her sniper’s rifle between her thighs and pulled down her thermal goggles. Zackiren was nearly invisible as usual, while Muhan’s form morphed to a collage of fuzzy, warm colors. He looked at her with his own goggles and gave a thumbs up, then pointed to her. She returned the gesture. Muhan tapped a small screen on the box next to him, causing a bright blue interface to display and inform him its contents were at 100% charge. He opened it, hands twitching with excitement, to reveal a spiked mace with electrodes in-between the points.
“Looks more and more beautiful every day.” His storm grey eyes elated in a tempest of pride, the electric blue glow crackling brightly in their reflection.
“You earned it, Han,” Zackiren patted his comrade’s back and hunched himself over to the open divider as Muhan faked wiping a joyful tear. The man’s unblinking, crimson eyes stared calmly at the black-haired woman driving the van. “Any courageous words from our fearless leader?” She turned her head an unnatural degree to stare at Zackiren directly. Like him, her irises were an unnerving ocean of blood, set behind the twin eclipses of her pupils.
“Mon dieu,” Armearelle cursed in French. “Shut up and hand me the flare gun Zeke.” She held out her hand impatiently. Zackiren pouted and reached into a large pocket at the waist of his uniform, pulling out the gun and several flares of ammunition. She gripped them all between her fingers and set them on the dashboard. “Merci, go away now.” Armearelle waived him off and grabbed the van radio. “Command this is Taskforce 6-26 radioing in, we’re at Spring Hills now. Cat. 2 confirmed, possibly more than one,” her voice was far less annoyed than before.
“Copy that 6-26,” a crackling voice confirmed through the static. “Radio in once supplies have been procured. Reminder that priority targets are the Insulin shipments, but get everything you can carry.”
“Copy Command. That’ll be all of them.” Armearelle nodded to Charles who responded with a huff of air from his nostrils. “Over and out.”
The van came to a stop as Armearelle shifted off the low hums from the engine. “Alright, everybody out.” She grabbed the flare gun and ammunition, sliding out the van, followed by Charles, who frowned and rubbed his nose immediately. Zackiren, crouched under the van’s roof, stepping out to reveal his almost inhuman height, heads above the others. He stared into the star-filled night. Muhan slapped his back.
“No time for star gazing Zeke.” The mace lay gently against his padded shoulder.
“Always time to admire nature my friend.”
“Yo, bodyguards, ya ward’s ona move.” Kiara strolled passed them, a tripod attached to her sniper’s rifle. Together the five stood before the gated entrance of a silent town. The entire area was encircled with a crudely made barrier of rotting wood and rusting metal. Dried blood and claw-like marks covered a “Welcome to Beautiful Spring Hills” sign nearby.
“What a calamitous event.” Charles walked up to the cobbled defense and put his hand against it; his eyes glowed like ghostly, cerulean lanterns in the pitch black night. “The terror they must have felt.” Bulging out, his left arm swelled in length and size as the hair grew into vast jungles of fur that covered his skin. His fingers stretched and spread further apart while the nails elongated into jagged claws. He shattered a section of the barrier in a single strike. Armearelle patted dust off his clothes as she entered the town.
“C’mon, we can mourn later.”
Aside from the occasional sharp crunch of stepping on broken glass, their approach was silent. The team walked in two distinct groups with Charles sticking close to Armearelle and Kiara flanked by Muhan and Zackiren. They moved quickly, but cautiously, constantly scanning the area.
“There.” Armearelle pointed to a string of apartments to the left of the main road. “Charles, take that position and wait for my signal.” Charles sprinted to the buildings, climbing to the rooftops in a matter of moments.
“In position.” A ghostly blue glow of his eyes in the distance confirmed before his voice came through their earpieces.
“Zeke, clear out that store and get Han and Kiara to that position.”
“Heard,” Zackiren’s voice was a whisper in their comms as he bounded to a grocery store directly across from the apartments.
“Kiki, once you’re in position let me know when you have Charles in your sights. Don’t lose him.”
“Hmph, lose C-Wolf? Could neva be me with that slowpoke,” she smirked.
“Hey, I’m back.” Zackiren’s imposing form materialized before them, thick blood streaked across his hands. “Just a few, the horde must be further back. Are you both ready?” Muhan and Kiara nodded, Kiara more enthusiastically. He hugged them tightly and leapt into the air, casually landing on the grocery store roof. A few moments later, a laser appeared, pointing from the store to the apartments.
“Kiki’s got ya C-Wolf, you ain’ neva outrunn’in dis girl.”
“Alright, get ready everybody, show’s on.” Armearelle raised the flare gun to the air and fired two shots. Their fizzling ascent heralded dazzling red pops that glided slowly through the sky in a radiant glow. The burning lights illuminated a horrific scene: bloody limbs strewn all over the streets and sidewalks, cracked bones sticking out like serrated monuments, dried blood doused the building walls like graffiti as overgrowth crept up as if to drink from them. “Go Charles. Let me know if you see the horde,” Armearelle ordered.
“Understood.” Soft pounces could be heard as a beastly shape dashed across the rooftops where Charles once was.
Suddenly, Armearelle heard the shatter of glass as a hand caked in dirty and curdled blood reached out from the darkness of a clothing store. A dead man reached out to her, dragging himself with one arm. His left cheek had a gash so deep it was left flapping with each rigorous movement. The shards of glass split his pale skin, but he kept advancing, not acknowledging the wounds. Armearelle walked serenely to the window, frowning at the creature.
“Repugnant.” Pulling a knife from her belt, she stabbed through the zombie’s head. It stopped moving instantly, hanging limp off the broken window.
Armearelle bent over the dead body, her crimson eyes gazing into the building. Parsing the reddened shadows of the flares, she could see clearly. Zombies were crawling and staggering through the back of the store. They stumbled awkwardly, one rotting leg after the other, broken and weathered bones further cracking with each step. Armearelle unholstered her pistol and shot them all through their skulls.
“Elle,” Charles’ voice came through the comms. “Found the horde, a few minutes up the street, definitely multiple Cat 2’s. One is probably in there.”
“Thanks for the heads up. Get those supplies, I’ll keep them busy.” Armearelle stared up the street through the red-lit night. “That doesn’t look too bad.”
“That’s our warrior leader,” Zackiren jeered at her as the horde was coming into view. A massive throng of zombies eerily lit in crimson shadows. Torn, soiled flesh resembling raw meat made up the majority of their bodies; spines sticking out their neck, attached to loose strings of nerve and muscle. Rotted eyes hung down the faces of some, attached only by a slimy optic nerve. Something foul was keeping it together, forcing all the bloody pieces to stay together where they should’ve long ago fallen to rot.
Armearelle sighed, briskly walking to meet them, “Sometimes I wish you’d all move faster.”
***
Zeke observed Armearelle carving through the horde, almost dancing; her movements were so fluid in a ballet of bullets, blades, and blood.
“How’s Charles doing Kiki?” Muhan stood by Kiara.
“He’s at de crash site now, getting everyting in dat plane.” From her scope, Kiara could see wreckage from a small plane at the far end of town. The aircraft was broken cleanly in two roughly even pieces, making it easy for her to maintain visual of Charles, who was tying cables attached to several large briefcases of medicinal supplies around his body.
“Where are all these Cat. 2’s he was talking about?” Muhan wondered. “It’s too quiet up here. No way his nose was off.”
“Ya, should be see’in sometin’ or-” Kiara went silent and adjusted her scope slightly.
“Charles okay?” Muhan questioned.
“He smell sometin’ bad. I’m tryna find it, shh.” Her eyes widened as she observed something through the scope. “On ya right, C-Wolf,” she spoke into comms. “Got ‘im.”
“It hasn’t located me yet,” Charles responded. “I’ll lay low until you shoot.”
Kiara’s trigger finger slowly pulled back, but just as she fired a powerful force drag her away from the ledge.
“Goddammit!” she cursed. Zackiren had pulled her and Muhan back just as a colossal zombie in military uniform burst through the ceiling onto the roof. A deformed mass of bone covered its head and body, with a nonexistent bottom jaw allowing a tooth-filled tongue to fully extend from its mouth.
“There’s the other one!” Zackiren raced faster than Muhan’s words to engage the creature, sending a fist straight into the zombie’s exo-skull. It staggered back, its head crushed in, but never took its mindless eyes off its attacker, quickly pushing forward with Zackiren’s fist still embedded inside. The vampire ripped his hand away, bringing a large chunk of oozing brains with him and crushing it in his hands.
“Not so bad-” The unfazed behemoth grabbed Zackiren by the throat and slammed him into the ground. Fluid gushed out from the open skull cavity. “S-so vry bd, M’han git th’ brn stm!”
Before he finished the sentence Muhan buried his mace in the open skull cavity. He quickly pressed a button on its handle; a static noise began to build from the weapon, then electricity erupted fiercely from the electrodes in a vigorous field. The zombie convulsed violently as boiling, steaming blood emptied from every pore on its rotted head. It made a sickening groan as its glazed over eyes expanded and burst with a squishy pop.
Zackiren removed the vice grip from his neck and looked into the hole the monster produced. “More are coming.”
“You and me can deal. Kiki, get set back up and find Charles,” Muhan ordered, his face glowing azure against the mace’s lightning field.
***
He ran, his lower half no longer human, replaced by massive wolf legs encased in thick, black fur. In his mouth was a steel cable tied to the supplies. He stopped for a moment, sniffing the air for that wretched odor. Satisfied, he spit the cable into his hand and tapped his earpiece to 6-26’s frequency.
“Merde! Find him Kiki!” Armearelle’s cursing was a slight comfort.
“Supplies acquired,” Charles reported. “Cat. 2’s on my tail. Heading back now at street level.”
“Jeezum dere ya are C!” He could envision the relieved smile Kiara must be wearing. Two more flares shot into the night sky as the others dimmed out.
“We leave when you get here-move your ass!” Armearelle ordered. “Light a flare for Kiki and get up high.”
“Heard.” Charles pulled out a flare from his belt, but just before he could ignite it his nose twitched. He turned his face to the scent, it stung and burned the closer it got. A putrid odor that took a ghastly form in his mind. “Ugh, no.”
A monstrous zombie in military uniform came charging past the crates. Its head was stuck sideways, bobbing back and forth on a snapped neck, arms wildly grabbing at the air. Charles kicked it back with his powerful legs, but the beast was only pushed a few feet back before renewing its charge. It grabbed his hand in a crushing hold that rubbed his bones together. Its skin was slimy and sticky, gluing itself to Charles as its bobbing head tried futilely to bite him. He forced his face away from the behemoth, and held his breath.
Charles quickly burst his arm into its lycan form, breaking free from the monster’s grasp. He wrapped both hands around the steel cable and yanked it as hard as he could. The supply bundle went flying straight into his assailant, crushing it against a wall. Just as the zombie pushed away the obstacle, he slashed the creature’s weak neck. Its head rolled off as its overgrown body dropped to the floor.
Charles picked up his flare and lit it. With it in one hand and the cable in his mouth, he scaled the building. Atop he saw the massive horde concentrating around Armearelle. He wiped the blood and flesh from his arm on the roof. Behind he could smell even stronger stenches approaching, fast. Charles ran with supply crates in tow towards the blistering flares.
The supplies scraped against the brick walls as Charles dragged them up. He leaped from rooftop to rooftop, panting louder the faster he sprinted. He could hear and smell them coming from below; the remaining Category-2’s rampaging through the streets and smashing through anything in their way. But the much slower horde of Category-1’s developed a stronger grasp on his mind as he closed in on their stench. Charles casually bounded over to another building; he was dragging up the supplies when something started pulling them back. Clasped against the wall was another of the Category-2’s, a zombie so bulky and dense it looked like it’d been flooded with steroids all its life. Cuts and gashes from the debris it charged through covered its body. Violently it dragged down the crates, trying to pull itself up in a sad attempt to scale the wall.
“C’mon C-wolf!” Kiara called in. “Di’jou get them stuck?!”
“Cat. 2’s latched onto them; can’t shake it off.”
“We got plans here! Jus’ drag ‘im up, I’ll take care‘f it.”
Charles morphed his arms into wolf-form and wrenched the cable up as high as he could, forcing the supply cases to fly up. The zombie stayed fastened to them when they all came crashing down. It rose up from its position with a bashed-in skull, lurching forward towards Charles. A single, pounding shot rang out. The zombie’s head imploded as a bullet sailed through.
“Ya almost here, hurry.”
“Thanks, Kiara,” Charles said, and proceeded again across the town.
***
The dauntless horde kept marching at the same sluggish pace it always had. Bodies piled onto bodies like sand bags. Armearelle tirelessly slaughtered all before her, she needed no gun or blade, but they did make the job easier. In the distance, Muhan was using a dead zombie as a shield while he swung away at those ascending to the roof.
“Charles is not making good time,” Armearelle snarled as she stabbed through the heads of two zombies at once, decaying matter drenching her fist and blade. “Agh!” She fell backwards as a zombie bit down on her shoulder, dragging her down to the pavement. “Damn brain dead!” A fist to the face sent its brain exploding out the back of its head.
“Elle, you good?” Muhan asked.
She could see his electric strikes from the ground. “I’m fine Han. Kiki, where’s Charles?”
“Back towards de apartments. Almost ‘ere.”
“Alright, we’re leaving! Break from your position and fall back to the van!”
“Heard!” they all shouted in unison.
Zeke swatted away a swath of zombies with supernatural strength as he rushed out of the small crowd that had formed on the roof. Muhan threw his undead shield off the roof’s edge, fleeing back to his allies. Suddenly, Charles came jolting off a rooftop, whipping the steel cable around in his mouth and catching the supplies in his massive wolf arms. He hit the ground running for the van, spitting the cable into his hands to shout, “Hurry, Cat. 2 coming!”
Zeke swaddled Kiara and Muhan and leapt off the building, the three joining Armearelle and Charles in retreat. As they ran through the hole Charles created, the zombies became a distant threat, their staggered movements and damaged bodies unable to keep up. They loaded themselves and the supplies into the van. Armearelle wheeled them around and shot back down the road, the fading light of the flares succumbing to the night’s overwhelming presence.
“Phew, good job team,” Muhan congratulated everyone as he used a towel to wipe his mace.
“Wait.” Charles’s nose twitched, and ears rotated to better catch sound. “A Cat. 2’s still coming.”
Soon everyone heard from inside, the crunch and crack of wood bursting apart as something rammed through the town’s barrier.
“Kiki.” Armearelle slowed the van.
“Jup, I gotcha girl.” Kiara opened the back door and marked her target with laser sight. She gathered a deep breath and steadied her aim. The zombie’s mindless charge kept a generously straight trajectory. Bits of woods and gravel clung to its torn body as it followed in mad bounds; its mouth had been ripped open, leaving a torn out throat wagging uncontrollably in a grotto of rotting flesh. No fatigue or pain afflicted its constant speed.
“Twenty meters Kiki,” Zackiren spotted for her.
“I got it, I got it,” Kiara murmured under her breathe. The laser sight remained steady in the darkness. A shot rang out from her gun, reverberating off the van walls. Kiara waited for the smoke to clear out of her barrel. “Target neutralized hahaaa.”
“Blessed aim!” Zackiren patted her on the back as she removed the tripod from her sniper’s rifle. Muhan finished cleaning his mace and put it back to charge in its briefcase, pulling out his book.
“Hey Zeke, did this Stratus guy join this war? He’s been in nine so far where I’m at.”
“You’ll find out when you finish the book, Han.”
Muhan rolled his eyes at Zackiren and immediately flipped to the last page. His jaw dropped upon reading it. “He killed himself!?”
“You really couldn’t wait huh? But yes, suicide is a rather natural death for vampires. He died at peace having lived a very fulfilling live, as you’ll see if you keep reading.” Zackiren pushed the book closer to his face, but he continued to stare in wide eyed astonishment.
“I’d kill myself too if I had to live in a time without modern plumbing and the like for millennia,” Charles commented.
“Ditto,” Kiara smirked.
“What the hell man,” Muhan sighed.
submitted by riceisnice29 to WritersGroup [link] [comments]


2020.09.16 16:49 ikieneng (Proofreading) My first long text in Finnish

So I've been learning Finnish again for like two weeks now, and it really helps that I've learned a bit of Finnish a few years ago. And I just wrote my first long text in Finnish, lyrics for a song. A lot of it involved looking up conjugation and declination lists and translations on Wiktionary, so much so that when I was done with the text, I only understood like half of what I wrote... So expect this to be full of mistakes. And I know it's blant, but hopefully, my lyrics will get better as my Finnish skills improve :)
The text is supposed to be in spoken, colloquial Finnish, and not the literary language. I used all the colloquialisms that I knew/that I could find, so please correct me if I missed any.
Colloqiualisms I'm unsure about: - The full conjugation of haluta. Haluun is the only positive colloquial form I know. - I assume mul is the same as mulla and minulla, and the same is true for sul/sulla/sinulla? I couldn't find much information on it. I know mul from the lyrics of Nälkä by Sanni. - Although this is not in my lyrics, which form of oikea is oikee a colloquialism of? Is it the same as oikea?
Here are my lyrics. There's an English translation below, in case it's not clear what I'm trying to say.

Iki Ènèng - Ei mitään
Chorus:
Tiedän, että häiritsin Sä satutit mun takia Mutta en ymmärä miksi et edes haluu tietää
Tiesin, että välitit musta Sä pelastit mut Mutta nyt et edes haluu tietää mitä kuulun, jos oon elossa
Strophe 1:
Tiedän, että me oltiin rakastunut Olin pihkassa suhun, ja sä muhun Tiedän, että et oo mulle Mutta halusit silti ystäväni
Pre-chorus:
Olin sydänsärky, koska jätin sut Olin ilman tunteita, koska mul et ollu enää sä Tiesin, että sä kaipasit mua Et ollu ilman tunteita, koska sul en ollu enää mä Ja sä et kaivannut mua Ja et sanonut mitään Susta tuntuu vain välinpitämättömyys
(Chorus)
Strophe 2:
Tiedän, että oltiin enää vain ystävä Olin pihkassa suhun, mutta et ollu Tiedän, että ei olla yhdessä Ja et haluu mua enää
(Pre-chorus)
(Chorus)
(4*) Ja et sanonut mitään

Chorus
I know I messed up You were hurt because of me But I don't understand why you don't even wanna know
I knew that you cared about me You saved me But now you don't even wanna know How I'm doing, if I'm alive
Strophe 1:
I knew we were in love I fell for you, and you for me I know you're not for me But you still wanted my company
Pre-chorus:
I was heartbroken because I didn't have you anymore I knew that you missed me You had no feelings because you didn't have me anymore And you didn't miss me And you said nothing All you feel is indifference
(Chorus)
Strophe 2:
I know that we were only friends I feel for you, but you didn't for me I know we're not together And you don't want me anymore
(Pre-chorus)
(Chorus)
(4*) And you said nothing
submitted by ikieneng to LearnFinnish [link] [comments]


2020.09.15 01:30 The_Sorrow 31 [M4F] Non-pinoy looking for open talks and language exchanges

Hey! Musta? I am a non-pinoy born, raised and living in Germany and I am looking for laid back (SFW or NSFW), open talks in the form of texting, voice messaging, calls, video and picture exchange of whatever we like to share. NSFW tag because any topic goes. Let's talk about music, sharing what we listen to currently. Let's show what we love to eat, what nature looks like around us and what we do in our daily lives. Tell me what runs thru your mind during these times and/or ask whatever you want to ask. I am often awake during late nights which might not be too bad, since we got a time difference of about 6h so you're always living in the future compared to me :D Replies don't have to be instant, reply whenever you feel like it, even if you take days, so will I if necessary. Not always do we need to exchange pictures or videos if not in the mood, no pressure; we may talk just once or talk for years to come. We all got our lives to take care of so let's be patient with each other, this should be relaxing and amusing after all, diba. I am also interested in learning languages, cultures and snacks! I would love to learn a few more words of your language. Let me greet you with a voice message in your language! : ) Fun fact: I have mixed roots as well, none of them Asian though. Interested? Send me a short introduction of yourself including your name, age and whatever you feel like via pm and let's start to talk.
I am using Telegram App for this.
Am looking forward to see you. Have a nice day. : )
submitted by The_Sorrow to phr4r [link] [comments]


2020.09.14 21:30 Glacialfury [Writing Prompt] You die and are inserted into a generic fantasy world. But as the last roleplaying character that you used.(From Rpgs, tabletop, non-roleplaying games, etc.


Suvarian awoke floating in a sea of darkness.
At first, he had no thoughts, just vague impressions of self drifting through the blackness.
After a time, those fragments began to coalesce and take shape. Slowly, consciousness returned to him in brief flashes of his life, or perhaps it had been a dream?
Yes, a dream.
That made sense to the confused, spectral consciousness that was Suvarian.
For if he had indeed fallen through that transparent floor panel and plummeted, screaming, his bladder emptying, one hundred and fifty stories to the concrete below, then how was he here, thinking about it now? Death was the end, absolute, a light switch of finality—there was no coming back. There was nothing at all.
Yes, it must have been a dream, and he was finally waking up.
A surge of dizzying flashes assaulted his mind, like the electric prickles of life returning to a sleeping limb. They came at him all at once, a torrent of emotions and experiences, faces, places, hopes, and dreams, brief glimpses of anger, hatred, love, and loss all swirled like a vortex in his mind.
The very fabric of his existence heaved, quaked, and erupted into a storm of chaos, confusion, and fear heightened by a pinpoint of light that suddenly appeared in the distance.
He studied that wavering dot curiously for what felt like several eternities before an odd compulsion propelled him toward it.
Suvarian fought savagely at first, of course, how could he not? He knew not to go into any damn lights.
He was all teeth and claws and rage, scrabbling, scratching, and snarling against the inexorable pull of that light. But its source was implacable and drew him in, and Suvarian knew panic and terror.
But something fluttered around the edges of his mind, a benevolent, calming presence. It felt like sunshine and fresh air. Then there was nothing but that terrible light—a rapid series of pulses that blazed into a sun.
Suvarian basked in its magnificent power, and the pulses strengthened, flashed nova-white, and the purifying flames consumed him.
"Welcome back," a melodic voice sang to him from where he lay blinking up at a cloudless sky. "That was foolish!"
Suvarian sat up on an elbow, blinking, confused.
"Huh?"
Several blurred faces regarded him from on high.
"Who's that?" Suvarian asked and was pleased when his voice didn't quaver even a little. "What happened? Where am I?"
A deep chuckle mocked his words.
"I thought ye knowed yerself wasn't a warrior?" A gruff voice spoke up, its blurred face leaning down to peer closely at Suvarian. "Aye, Bards're for the back o' the group, ye durn fool human!"
"Easy, Brom!" The melodic voice scolded. "Don't you think he's been through enough? Resurrection exacts a heavy toll on the mortal coil. He will be disoriented and confused for a while."
"Bah!" Brom responded in his gruff manner, straightening up. "Meselfs been ressrec—ress—brought back a hunnerd times afore, ne'er with ill effects mind ye, he's fine Elustrial. Or I'm a bloody orc!"
Elustrial frowned at Brom, but her beautiful, shapely face and sparkling green eyes struggled to look anything but radiant in the golden rays of the sun.
She slipped her gaze to Suvarian, and the frown transformed into a smile.
"Here," she said pleasantly, her slender hand reaching into the folds of her shimmering blue cloak, retrieving a small corked vial, its contents a vibrant, almost luminous blue. 'Drink this. It will speed your recovery."
Suvarian accepted the offering with a bewildered expression, popped the cork, and quaffed the potion in a single gulp. Its revitalizing powers flowed through him, sharpened his mind, and cut away the cobwebs gumming up his thoughts.
"Wait. Why did I need to be resurrected?" Suvarian wanted to know, clambering to his feet and swaying slightly in a cool breeze that tickled over his skin. "What happened?
Brom cackled, then gestured over his shoulder with a stubby thumb at a massive umber hulk lying belly down in the grass, its armored, tree trunk sized arms and legs splayed wide, the monster's thick blood saturating the grass with its black taint.
"Ye thought to tickle it with that puny blade ye call a sword, and It killed ye dead," Brom explained with what Suvarian thought was a little too much amusement twinkling in his sharp grey eyes. Brom gestured with his red-bearded chin at the beautiful Elustrial. "Elustrial, being a goodly cleric, rezz—brought ye back."
"I was dead?!"
"Aye."
The enormity of that revelation struck Suvarian like a thunderbolt.
"Dead..." He whispered, his thoughts racing. "How, why?"
He tried to recall the life he'd been so sure was just a dream. But even the memory of remembering slipped through the fingers of his mind like sand until nothing remained but the here and now.
"It was not a pleasant experience," Suvarian conceded, scowling at Brom's mirth. "One, I do not wish to repeat."
"Bwahahaha!" Brom cackled again, producing a large flask from a tiny pouch on his hip. He winked at Suvarian, lifted the flask in salute, and took a large swig of its contents. "A toast to yer first death! And me first drink! Of the day..."
Elustrial laughed, a sweet silvery note that left Suvarian's ears longing for more and regarded the dwarf with a curious expression, but she did not speak.
"I am in your debt, Elustrial," Suvarian dipped his head and thanked the elf maiden with a short bow and a flourish of his gold-embroidered, purple cloak. "It's starting to come back to me."
"Fear not, my minstrel friend," Elustrial smiled, placing a gentle hand on his shoulder, and he found himself wondering how there could be darkness in a world with such radiance? "It will all return soon."
She turned away and bent to gather her things but stopped short and glanced back at him.
"In the future," she said while shouldering a leather pack. "May I suggest you leave battling monsters to the warrior?"
At first, Suvarian thought she meant the dour-faced dwarf with the fiery beard. Yet, when he followed her gaze, it led past the dwarf, around behind Suvarian to a small, childlike figure standing proud and straight in gleaming silver and white plate mail.
"Aye," Brom agreed with her, stepping up beside Suvarian and handing him a silver flute that glittered in the sun. "Yerself can play and sing from the back."
Suvarian looked between them in wonder.
"What say you, Sinzan?" Elustrial called out to the figure in the magnificent armor. "Shall we go?"
"Indeed, Elustrial," Sinzan bowed his head, his gleaming helm turning to regard Suvarian. "Leave the close-in fighting to me."
"That's the warrior?" Suvarian blurted out before he could stop himself. "I mean, I just thought..."
He glanced from Brom to Sinzan, his face flushing red.
"Aye, ye musta forgot that, eh?" The dwarf snickered. "Seein's how ye thought it was yerself."
Suvarian's embarrassment deepened to a dark red, and he glanced at the monster. Its hideous, mandible mouth was frozen, half-open, and four glittering black eyes stared at Suvarian from behind death's mask.
He took an involuntary step back, reaching instinctively for a blade that was not on his belt.
Brom nudged Suvarian, a wide grin revealing the dwarf's blocky teeth, and pointed to where a gem-encrusted hilt protruded from the umber hulk's left butt cheek.
Suvarian slunk over, his head hanging low, face still burning red, retrieved the weapon, wiped its blade clean on the grass, and slipped its glittering hilt into his sheath.
"What now?" He asked, fixing his gaze on Elustrial.
She lifted a delicate brow and exchanged glances with the rest of the party.
"To the crystal caves?" Brom suggested, a resounding belch roaring forth from his throat before he patted his belly.
"Indeed," Sinzan agreed. "That is where Sel Greel has raised his undead army. So that is where we are needed most."
Their eyes fell on Suvarian, waiting patiently.
Suvarian closed his eyes, tilted his face toward the sun, and inhaled deeply, collecting his thoughts.
There was something in the air, an energy that seemed to resonate around them.
Excitement, he decided after a moment. They were excited about this next adventure.
But did he share their enthusiasm? Would he stand before this Sel Greel when the time came?
He opened his eyes and regarded his friends with a mixture of bravado and mischief shining in his eyes, and a crooked, roguish grin splitting his face.
"To the crystal caves," he declared, brandishing his flute. "And let Sel Greel tremble in fear!"
He was the bard, after all—they couldn't do it without him.
Perhaps, there would be rooms of glittering gold and sparkling jewels to be plundered. The images of all that treasure widened his grin so that it took in his entire face.
What the hell, he thought. You only live once.
submitted by Glacialfury to Glacialwrites [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 23:25 don_h_kowalski Read, and Dolly Parton will never sound the same.

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to LovecraftianWriting [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 21:59 don_h_kowalski Already published but want to know what went wrong

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to nosleepworkshops [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 18:53 don_h_kowalski Read, and Dolly Parton will never sound the same.

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to stayawake [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 18:52 don_h_kowalski Read, and Dolly Parton will never sound the same.

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to DarkTales [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 18:51 don_h_kowalski Read, and Dolly Parton will never sound the same.

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to Horror_stories [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 18:51 don_h_kowalski Read, and Dolly Parton will never sound the same.

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to Odd_directions [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 18:04 don_h_kowalski Read, and Dolly Parton will never sound the same.

Hello y’all my name's Sam and I gotta hell of a story to tell ya. Ya see, we was always just a bunch of trash for those fancy ass government politician uppity speaking the Queen's Latin and what not and sure there had been the one or other clash between us and some government people but in the end we was all good and respected the guys and the governor and that even though self-serving prick he was, I tell ya.
It was then sometime in spring in the 30’s, I think. It was then, when one day the sky got all colored in a strange red and when that crazy ass wizard turned up and I kid you not, he was not of this earth. There was something wrong bout this guy, some sinister smell. I sposse we all had those dreams before it happened and none of us ever talked about it.
Kept it quiet, hush-hush. I remember it so clearly: This…this thing. It must have been a dream cause I was naked, all of us were there, whole town. And in our midst this white man, white as marble. His head was odd, lower half like a man and upper half like – like something else. Had a bunch of eyes, blinking, on its forehead and horns and the horns twisted and coiled like tapeworms on his face. Like some crazy mixture of ram and man. It spoke. It spoke to us of blood and sacrifice.
I was there when he came to town and he did so on his cheap-ass-ride in a weird coat of many colors with his bunch o hippies.
He was all haggard and dark and the air tasted of rot and grave and everyone fell quiet as a fly, tell you that. And then - nobody said anything as much but the others must have felt it too - there was a voice. Like it was in my thoughts, in my head but it was no my thoughts I swear ya, it was something else.
I am your lamb because we want it and you will it and you are afraid to live and afraid of dying and we wills it in the name of the blood, the lamb and the old time religion.
I heard it, clear as a fart I swear on my Mamaw’s grave.
Give me your old blood, child of the lamb.
That's what the voice said. Guy just was there in the middle of town square, smiling his other world smile. His fellas surrounded him and stared dull onto us.
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I mean, telling it now sounds crazy, I know, but that was just the beginning.
You see, I don't know where you come from but in a backwards backwater ya Reverend has a lot to say and Revered Affas was hellbent on proving this wizard a necromancer and get him killed. So guy strolls in the cheapest ride and there's all kinds of stories about him: my Mamaw who's from the coast, knew his Ma back in the day and confirmed that woman was harlot like no other, back then just married that other carpenter guy because he was dull enough to feed all her kids. Then one day, carpenter just disappeared, like just gone.
There were other, darker things told about him. Dark and strange amidst our dry old land with the dragonflies buzzing without a single care. They said that he was a mischief as a boy already and was vexing priests and communing with sluts and that he wandered around and gathered young men and whispered devil-talk in their ears and did other things with them. Like dark things.
They would then travel in the countryside and everywhere he came people would show up and stare at them goddamning hippie-cult. I always said "Nah man! That's a bunch of lies people mouth about!" but when he came to our God-fearing town Reverend Affas said "Don't let that bastard get to ya!" but not all listened. None listened and we was all payin a price for it.
See, here in the south we're a ordinary god-loving people. The city folks east and north might call us odd hillbillies but we ain't. No Sir we ain't!
But I tell y'all that man was something else entirely. There was long sayings of a God that was our God but then he was not. And when he spoke you felt pulled in like a child's mouth sucks on a honey-coated candy bar. Mostly they was just sittin in the country side - hundreds of people listen to his sermons and it felt like he was in my head the few times I went there too.
Give me the blood of the lamb, child.
He'd talk some stuff from the Good Book but then when you'd thought "That's a fine ass preacher!" he'd go ape shit talkin bout the end of the world and the revolution and dead men walking the earth and waters. Many cheered at that and when he rode in with his bunch o hippies he had quite some fame. Government didn't give a fuck bout religion - didn't back then and doesn't do now. So, he took up residence. He preached. He converted.
The first night they came to town I had a dream, at least I hope it was and I think so cause my friend Paulie saw the same and the poor bastard never got around it and he changed a lot. Somewhere, in the east, Paulie’s walking around and he's a part of them now and proselytizing as some preacher under the name of Saul.
Bad things started to happen. People heard strange whispers in the ol night and felt watched. Ol Jebediah from up Hill Road thought he'd saw naked devils dance up by Mule Creek. Dancing and singing but it was no language he'd ever heard. So, I talked with some others and they all saw it alike: lambs. Lambs with bloody eyes and bloody mouths rolling down on our town and gnawing on the bones of our children and singing in strange tongues.
Around Easter shit started to hit the fan. This strange Boogaloo Man had taken up in town and everyone got itchy, saw Reverend Affas sittin on his porch with some other important lookin folk. Watching, whispering.
It was then when Mamaw asked me to go to the little church fair we have always down there at St. Temple's Church. Walked her down cause Ma had no good legs ya know. She told me again of this odd fella and she seems really frightened o him, ya know?
Said "Sammy, stay away from that devil worship, boy! That Father Jay ain't right in his head. Heard that stuff about that tramp M.M.?"
And of course I heard. M.M. was known to young fellas all around the county. Heck, even current Sheriff had lost his virginity with her! But as I said, we got some people that were really itchy and they don't see that God made boys as boys and they drag that poor filly down on Main Street and start throwing all kind of trash at her, hurling even stones. Poor bitch.
"Now this fella, this Father Jay as they call him," continued Mamaw. "He's coming down there and he talks some of his strange unnamed god and he just drags that stray and takes her with him and his boys. Can you imagine? She's with that crowd since then and none was able to lift a finger."
Poor M.M. was just a gal who made the wrong choices.
Now, we went down to the market fair and Mamaw opened up - wasn't easy back then to lose ya husband cause government didn't give ya shit and it was on us boys to take care of her. So Mamaw bought some scarves and some candles and was really happy to talk to some of the old ladies she hadn't seen for some time when them hippies show up. This Father Jay he looked pissed as noose and his whole face just one distorted angry grimace.
He came forward, hell even his own gang seemed scared of him as he walked towards the fair and without a warning, he flipped over one of the tables and unhinged goes after the traders. Honest folk assaulted by this crazy man. I don’t know why none put a stop to him at first, I think he tore out someone’s throat with his teeth before police stepped in. Police, pah! If you can callem that.
Berserk this madman went I swear it to ya all! From one table to another slapping shopkeepers and makeshift jewelry-smiths and bank appointees with a leathern whip and for a second he seemed like something different at all, like a chimera of hundred eyes entombed in white marble. I took Mamaw in my arms and as fast as we could we made our way out there, not seeing how he - or rather it - went into church. Mamaw was shaking like any old lady in such a situation would and I calmed her down and brought here home and took my ride for my own place. Some people were squatting on the street down from the hills.
"You fellas heard what that bunch o hippies did do?" I shouted.
"That ain't nothing son!" said old Anna, some frenemy of Ma.
She was the center of attention, everyone forming a circle around the old hag. "My son-in-law, who was a fisherman with his Pa when he was still young, wrote me. He'd heard this crazy folk was streaming away from the country to our city here and that I'd better pack up and move in with them," she said.
"Why's that?" asked Mr. Judah, the owner of the barber shop in my quarter.
"Wrote he'd heard from the father of a boy who's now withem," Mrs. Anna seemed scared.
"Wrote all kinds of strange stuff. Folks going amiss. Folks going on black waters. Walkin on it like some solid ground. Said that boy, Petey he’s called, he ran away from home his daddy ain’t not knowing what to do. Wanted to hand him over the boat and all y’all and now he’s gone squatting with some hippies for God’s sake!” she talked herself into a rage.
“I heard some similar stuff. Those are no-goods I tell you! Saw it from first I saw them!” said Mr. Abe. “My cousin down in Alexandria said she wasn’t sure when she first heard of it but now she is. 100 percent sure!”
“A hundred percent you hear that?” screamed Mrs. Anna.
“She said that slut from north and her cuckold husband lived there when they got their first baby and they were nothing but trouble!”
Then, someone else said, “That’s nothing. I knew his daddy – or supposed daddy cause by now we all have heard that story – back when we was young. Was as fine as a man as any. Honest, never lazy and somehow fell in with that trollop. Well, last time I saws him he told me ,Isaac I was so wrong. That gal, she’s of the devil. That boy is even worse!’ he told me and I swears it. I asked him what was wrong and he said that this supposed “son” of his had gone to a swine-farm with him one day. The piggies all squeaking around and their owner, he was a bit out of it. Well our little Father Jay goes up to him, whispers something in his ear my friend, his name was Joe, can’t hear. Boy comes back and giggles like some imbecile. Then the piggies go all crazy around in their stall, jump over the fence and hoard themselves over the farmer. Eat and slurp away on him. Joe was horrified. I don’t know, like I guess most of you, what happened to him, just vanished. Tell you this though: that boy ain’t no human, no Sir! No human!”
Crowd gathered around, more and more people. Heard some of the things spoken there later: Of raising the dead, and exchanging water for blood and all that crap. I didn’t believe in that stuff back then, I was so wrong.
Well, for some days there was quiet. Then shit hit the fan. Met my neighbor Isaac, a fine young gent always friendly. Well he looked like the devil was after him as he crossed me.
“What’s wrong Isaac?” I asked.
“Sam, you wouldn’t believe it.”
“Believe what?”
“I had a strange dream, been having it for a couple o weeks. You probably gonna laugh at me for this,” he said.
I was reminded of my dreams. And that my brothers hadem and my Mamaw. So, “Go on!” I says.
“Well, it was this – this man. It talked and talked. It said the most horrendous things, Sam! It said it couldn’t die and that it came to collect my kids! We was all out there on the farm-grounds, me and my wife and the kids and my Grampaw and all of our family and this guy – this thing with the lamb-head just stood there, drenched in black blood and it went on and on and on about sacrifice and the Old One and how it was there to harvest us! It was just terrible,” he said, mucus and water running from his nose.
Poor bastard was wiping away tears now from his eyes. I wanted to talk it up as some night-terror but I couldn’t. I knew he was right, you see? I put an arm around his shoulder in the waning light of the sun, as a dark long shadow came up the wayside. It was an old man, leading a horse.
“Grampaw!” shouted Isaac.
“What ya fellas doing up here?” the old man asked. “Gotta get down into town they smoke out those devils!”
Isaac wiped away his tears, then joined his grandfather. Both looked at me in expectation.
“What’s your plan?” I asked, strolling down the hillside.
“Got a snitch in his little cult,” said the old man. “That ginger.”
We marched in silence down into the town, into the park to be precise. There was some police-men, the Sheriff and Reverend Affas and amidst them all was the ginger, crouched and fearful to the feet of his master.
Maketh as the blood commands ye!” ordered Father Jay, his eyes emitting a glow from them.
The ginger kept begging and tearing at his master’s tattered clothes.
Do as we will. You will it. We will it, thus you want it. You all want it, thus we will it,” boomed the voice of Father Jay.
The air was full of a rotten smell, of death and sweat and all men around wore red on their cheeks, until one of the officers stepped forth, was that young Officer Malkus who tried to grab the ginger. But then, then one of the fellas stood forth and with a huge Arkansas tooth pick he cut him in the face and put a hand to the wound, blizzard fast, pulling and ripping the flesh from the skin before the others could interfere. Officer Malkus crouched in front o the flowers of the park screaming in pain, his fellas rounding up over him, keeping the cultists away. Those evil-doers laughed.
How fucked up is this? One of their own mutilated another man and they laugh.
“Well done, Simon!” proclaimed Father Jay in his dark coat. He looked at me, I swear it straight and so did everyone else there.
What then happened is not easy to describe. Between them and with a fat bowie tooth pick he slashed the side of the man's face, nearly cutting off an ear. Before anyone was to react Petey was on him, stabbing and laughing at once, and ripped the ear clean off and licked it and laughed like crazy. Was then when all hell broke lose I tell ya that.
All his cultists and the patrol were clawing at each other. All but Father Jay for he walked over to the freshly mutilated who was screaming on the floor. Dunno what it was probably some mocking gesture, but he picked up the torn-off piece of ear and smashed it on the wound from where it came as if he expected it to just stick back to the head. The fella on the floor howled in agony. Finally, Father Jay stuffed the whole thing in his mouth, chewed on it like chicken.
And you know what I saw? I saw my little brother falling from the big ox-machinery and breaking his neck and, and my grandma and my Mamaw and how they all were there in a grave, a massgrave genocided and put to rest in the abyss, and that fucker smiled and laughed and red drops came down his forehead and before Reverend Affas could say a word, Father Jay had put a hand – or claw, for me it was a hand still then – to the throat of the ginger and pulled him close and pressed his wormfilled mouth towards his lips.
There were people shuffling around, and pushing but none touched that vile wizard king and from afar I saw this: The ginger, lifted high in the air, his mouth pressed on the maw of Father Jay and in a sudden movement the Father pushed down on head-plate and up on chin and severed with his teeth the tongue of the ginger within his mouth and swallowed it all whole.
Then he laughed and laughed at us afterwards his chest black from blood and all those damn government people did was staring in fear, like frightened kitten.
The officers took him away and his fellas after them and the ginger in the park coiled in itself and cried and we all scattered for we knew, I swear we knew, something was coming.
Blood of my blood. Lamb of the burning soul eat my flesh be my host and give me the old time religion.
Finally, the mob of patrol and acolytes dispersed after some while, how none was hurt more I don't know.
I barely remember what happened after, I think I walked over to Mamaw’s place and we talked. My brother was down in Galli and I crashed in her home. I saw things. Man, I saw things I can't explain so it must have been a dream, right?
I was there in the lower level of the building. It was dark, pitch-black night. I didn't see it but I knew that the sky above my childhood home was utterly starless and as black as my surroundings in here. Then the voices started. Guttural whispers, high-pitched laughs just outside the house, just in front of the door. Then, a knock. It knocked, and my heart froze bonkers boy I tell ya that!
Surely just imagined that! Had I drunk something and skipped root? Yeah, that must have it why else have a dream all crazy? But then it knocked again, and again. Maybe Ben's twins threw stones again on Mamaw's door, those little shits. Musta spilled over in my dreamlands.
Then I remember, in my dream, I raised myself up and looked throw the slits in the window boards. And all was white like in the stories they told about old Moe and how his people only lived on cotton-candy, whatever that meant.
I started for a while, in the dream I stared and then I realized that was no cotton-candy, that it was moving and shifting like a snake and that it had a head or the half of a head.
I felt raw dread and sweat on my whole ol body and then I woke from a terrible noise, my own screams, I thought first, but it didn't stop so I went to Mamaw's bed and she was screamin all over babbling about eyes and blood and askin and askin if I hadn't seen it but I told her, "Ma calm down t'was all a dream."
Little lamb. Wolves are at the door to take the old time religion. Drink of my flesh, eat of my blood. Become the wrath of the lamb.
It must have been a dream, right? So, I went on my business with a fucking headache and I hugged Ma and headed home. And on my way home I didn't shake it off, this feeling of thousands of eyes looking at me, I swear it was crazy. I cut my way right through town when I realized there was a bunch of our peoples and the wild bunch too, all right there like ready to party it out. Paul was there too, right in the center with the hippies. I stumbled down between the shouting people. There was a small stage in front of the small people above which some ol patrol stood with Father Jay on them, smiling like a sage lunatic.
"Haven't seen ya in a while Paulie, " I said.
"It's Saul now," he replied drily and he had this look and it was all wrong.
“What?” I said.
“Saul, not Paul,” he replied and turned away from me. Fucking snob.
It was a crazy maze this place. People kept shoutin and screamin and I asked a fella what's goin on, and he said they had the wizard when the Governor himself stepped in front.
"Good people here you called for help with dealing with a criminal ain't that right?" he said in the fancy Queen's Latin and he was all uppity.
"Aye and yes," shouted the crowd.
"But I have to tell y'all, that we didn't find this man guilty of any charge," the Governor went on.
At this the whole crowd got angry as a hare in a snake's belly.
"He killed Lassie and made him a zombie", screamed one voice.
"He's doing things with the lepers. Ain't right I tell ye," shouted another.
"He worships a strange new god," boomed a third one.
This one though I recognized. Reverend Affas stood at the helm of a herd of church elders, that great chief cook and bottle washer of all sons of bitches.
"That ain't no crime Mr. Kay," countered the Governor, addressing the Reverend at his first name. The crowd got wilder and wilder like they'd sniffed the finest pussy and patrols got all edgy.
"Though if ya do what ya must I could turn some governmental eye," the Governor winked. "And wash my hands free of this whole business."
Reverend Affas then, led the charge and them all bunch of crazies stormed the stage and took that wizard Jay and they beat him to pulp with all kinda metal tools like none I was doing the same. Through the whole of this (I spare you the details) the guy kept calm and didn't say a word. His followers wept and pleaded but he would only tell em to fuck off and fuck off they did then. Fuck what they did to the poor son of the bitch.
The worst though was when they'd tied him up and hammered nails through him, but him on two planks and pulled him to Mt. Golgo. We all followed, all stared and shouted and when some government guy put a cleaver in his flank the earth started shakin like beans in a pan. We all saw it then, that thing from my dreams, our dreams. We saw it all then, all o us collective the thing with the white head, as big as one mountain standin on another mountain and its head. It had horns and eyes all over and from within my mind I heard its voice.
I am the blood. I am the son. We will the power of the blood. The lamb of blood. There’s power in the lamb.
And I think all o us passed out. The next three days were pure horror, people disappeared a lot, weird sightings of white things stalking the night. My whole family hauled up at Mamaw's and in the night we'd hearem knockin. Their sheepfaces covered in horns and eyes they would look at us and lick their lips as lions like they was fit to be tied like some crazy sons of bitches. The earth was shakin and my brothers and my mother, god fucking mother-fucking god, they were on each other mawing each other and eating one anothers flesh like hillbilly vampires.
I made for the door that’s when I saw them things and they were a multitude of shorn lambs and their skin was as marble and their mouths as blood and their eyes was legion and their voice a deep guttural whisper and all went black.
I slept for a week. The town was dead, all my friends but gone to imbecile. Mamaw was eaten by her own family. None wanted to talk about it amidst the fireflies in the magnolia gardens. None wanted to talk about what everyone of us was hearing. About his voice.
Give me that old time religion. Drink my blood.
Nobody filed a report and, I tell y’all that, it took me some time but I found Paul, or Saul as he says now he’s called. He’s in the east, preaching of this lamb-god this monster.
I don’t know if I can stop it and I think I can’t. Ginger hanged himself day afterwards and all said that’s a real yaller dog for not stickin it out, though none was ready to blame him for it. Petey went to Italy, the others I don’t know. Wild bunch gone and their necromancer is rising, after three days, some said he came back and was all mauled up like a corpse. And he smiled, he fucking smiled.
I don’t know what will become of us. I heard there is people already coming, already coming to see the tomb where that foul creature was left to rot. I think I’ll move north and leave all that shit behind me and I leave it as best as I can.
There's power in the blood, power in the blood There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power In the blood of the Lamb There is power, power, wonder-working power In the precious blood of the Lamb
submitted by don_h_kowalski to nosleep [link] [comments]


2020.09.10 19:40 misstalitha PLEASE HELP

I have a 2003 Buick Park Avenue Ultra.... LOVE the Car.....high milage,live in fl. Had a problem car wouldn't start started it probably 5xs that day running errands etc..... Thought it was a serious issue. Turns out dead battery,all interior lights,radio,everything works. Gave me NO hesitation before it just stops.,Get Mechanic to come check it out(Retired,friend/customer) charges battery it works fine no problem,test alternator Good.Musta left something on.Fast forward,month or so later,have problems. Take to Autozone buy new battery this ones bad(Bought car in Feb.) No problem till now starts great but if I drive somewhere n get right back in car to leave hesitation.Realized Today cruise control switch is on. Related to battery issue??? IDK,Now I'm here any Help/suggestions would be GREATLY APPRECIATED!!!!
submitted by misstalitha to MechanicAdvice [link] [comments]


2020.09.10 12:36 Glacialfury Bard Dreams

A/N I wrote this in response to a writing prompt and thought you guys might enjoy it. Here is the original writing prompt:
You die and are inserted into a generic fantasy world. But as the last roleplaying character that you used.(From Rpgs, tabletop, non-roleplaying games, etc.

---

Suvarian awoke floating in a sea of darkness.
At first, he had no thoughts, just vague impressions of self drifting through the blackness.
After a time, those fragments began to coalesce and take shape. Slowly, consciousness returned to him in brief flashes of his life, or perhaps it had been a dream?
Yes, a dream.
That made sense to the confused, spectral consciousness that was Suvarian.
For if he had indeed fallen through that transparent floor panel and plummeted, screaming, his bladder emptying, one hundred and fifty stories to the concrete below, then how was he here, thinking about it now? Death was the end, absolute, a light switch of finality—there was no coming back. There was nothing at all.
Yes, it must have been a dream, and he was finally waking up.
A surge of dizzying flashes assaulted his mind, like the electric prickles of life returning to a sleeping limb. They came at him all at once, a torrent of emotions and experiences, faces, places, hopes, and dreams, brief glimpses of anger, hatred, love, and loss all swirled like a vortex in his mind.
The very fabric of his existence heaved, quaked, and erupted into a storm of chaos, confusion, and fear heightened by a pinpoint of light that suddenly appeared in the distance.
He studied that wavering dot curiously for what felt like several eternities before an odd compulsion propelled him toward it.
Suvarian fought savagely at first, of course, how could he not? He knew not to go into any damn lights.
He was all teeth and claws and rage, scrabbling, scratching, and snarling against the inexorable pull of that light. But its source was implacable and drew him in, and Suvarian knew panic and terror.
But something fluttered around the edges of his mind, a benevolent, calming presence. It felt like sunshine and fresh air. Then there was nothing but that terrible light—a rapid series of pulses that blazed into a sun.
Suvarian basked in its magnificent power, and the pulses strengthened, flashed nova-white, and the purifying flames consumed him.
"Welcome back," a melodic voice sang to him from where he lay blinking up at a cloudless sky. "That was foolish!"
Suvarian sat up on an elbow, blinking, confused.
"Huh?"
Several blurred faces regarded him from on high.
"Who's that?" Suvarian asked and was pleased when his voice didn't quaver even a little. "What happened? Where am I?"
A deep chuckle mocked his words.
"I thought ye knowed yerself wasn't a warrior?" A gruff voice spoke up, its blurred face leaning down to peer closely at Suvarian. "Aye, Bards're for the back o' the group, ye durn fool human!"
"Easy, Brom!" The melodic voice scolded. "Don't you think he's been through enough? Resurrection exacts a heavy toll on the mortal coil. He will be disoriented and confused for a while."
"Bah!" Brom responded in his gruff manner, straightening up. "Meselfs been ressrec—ress—brought back a hunnerd times afore, ne'er with ill effects mind ye, he's fine Elustrial. Or I'm a bloody orc!"
Elustrial frowned at Brom, but her beautiful, shapely face and sparkling green eyes struggled to look anything but radiant in the golden rays of the sun.
She slipped her gaze to Suvarian, and the frown transformed into a smile.
"Here," she said pleasantly, her slender hand reaching into the folds of her shimmering blue cloak, retrieving a small corked vial, its contents a vibrant, almost luminous blue. 'Drink this. It will speed your recovery."
Suvarian accepted the offering with a bewildered expression, popped the cork, and quaffed the potion in a single gulp. Its revitalizing powers flowed through him, sharpened his mind, and cut away the cobwebs gumming up his thoughts.
"Wait. Why did I need to be resurrected?" Suvarian wanted to know, clambering to his feet and swaying slightly in a cool breeze that tickled over his skin. "What happened?
Brom cackled, then gestured over his shoulder with a stubby thumb at a massive umber hulk lying belly down in the grass, its armored, tree trunk sized arms and legs splayed wide, the monster's thick blood saturating the grass with its black taint.
"Ye thought to tickle it with that puny blade ye call a sword, and It killed ye dead," Brom explained with what Suvarian thought was a little too much amusement twinkling in his sharp grey eyes. Brom gestured with his red-bearded chin at the beautiful Elustrial. "Elustrial, being a goodly cleric, rezz—brought ye back."
"I was dead?!"
"Aye."
The enormity of that revelation struck Suvarian like a thunderbolt.
"Dead..." He whispered, his thoughts racing. "How, why?"
He tried to recall the life he'd been so sure was just a dream. But even the memory of remembering slipped through the fingers of his mind like sand until nothing remained but the here and now.
"It was not a pleasant experience," Suvarian conceded, scowling at Brom's mirth. "One, I do not wish to repeat."
"Bwahahaha!" Brom cackled again, producing a large flask from a tiny pouch on his hip. He winked at Suvarian, lifted the flask in salute, and took a large swig of its contents. "A toast to yer first death! And me first drink! Of the day..."
Elustrial laughed, a sweet silvery note that left Suvarian's ears longing for more and regarded the dwarf with a curious expression, but she did not speak.
"I am in your debt, Elustrial," Suvarian dipped his head and thanked the elf maiden with a short bow and a flourish of his gold-embroidered, purple cloak. "It's starting to come back to me."
"Fear not, my minstrel friend," Elustrial smiled, placing a gentle hand on his shoulder, and he found himself wondering how there could be darkness in a world with such radiance? "It will all return soon."
She turned away and bent to gather her things but stopped short and glanced back at him.
"In the future," she said while shouldering a leather pack. "May I suggest you leave battling monsters to the warrior?"
At first, Suvarian thought she meant the dour-faced dwarf with the fiery beard. Yet, when he followed her gaze, it led past the dwarf, around behind Suvarian to a small, childlike figure standing proud and straight in gleaming silver and white plate mail.
"Aye," Brom agreed with her, stepping up beside Suvarian and handing him a silver flute that glittered in the sun. "Yerself can play and sing from the back."
Suvarian looked between them in wonder.
"What say you, Sinzan?" Elustrial called out to the figure in the magnificent armor. "Shall we go?"
"Indeed, Elustrial," Sinzan bowed his head, his gleaming helm turning to regard Suvarian. "Leave the close-in fighting to me."
"That's the warrior?" Suvarian blurted out before he could stop himself. "I mean, I just thought..."
He glanced from Brom to Sinzan, his face flushing red.
"Aye, ye musta forgot that, eh?" The dwarf snickered. "Seein's how ye thought it was yerself."
Suvarian's embarrassment deepened to a dark red, and he glanced at the monster. Its hideous, mandible mouth was frozen, half-open, and four glittering black eyes stared at Suvarian from behind death's mask.
He took an involuntary step back, reaching instinctively for a blade that was not on his belt.
Brom nudged Suvarian, a wide grin revealing the dwarf's blocky teeth, and pointed to where a gem-encrusted hilt protruded from the umber hulk's left butt cheek.
Suvarian slunk over, his head hanging low, face still burning red, retrieved the weapon, wiped its blade clean on the grass, and slipped its glittering hilt into his sheath.
"What now?" He asked, fixing his gaze on Elustrial.
She lifted a delicate brow and exchanged glances with the rest of the party.
"To the crystal caves?" Brom suggested, a resounding belch roaring forth from his throat before he patted his belly.
"Indeed," Sinzan agreed. "That is where Sel Greel has raised his undead army. So that is where we are needed most."
Their eyes fell on Suvarian, waiting patiently.
Suvarian closed his eyes, tilted his face toward the sun, and inhaled deeply, collecting his thoughts.
There was something in the air, an energy that seemed to resonate around them.
Excitement, he decided after a moment. They were excited about this next adventure.
But did he share their enthusiasm? Would he stand before this Sel Greel when the time came?
He opened his eyes and regarded his friends with a mixture of bravado and mischief shining in his eyes, and a crooked, roguish grin splitting his face.
"To the crystal caves," he declared, brandishing his flute. "And let Sel Greel tremble in fear!"
He was the bard, after all—they couldn't do it without him.
Perhaps, there would be rooms of glittering gold and sparkling jewels to be plundered. The images of all that treasure widened his grin so that it took in his entire face.
What the hell, he thought. You only live once.
submitted by Glacialfury to HFY [link] [comments]


2020.09.08 05:27 FudgeSuprme Darker Days - Chapter 47

[You chose to go now.]
Anything could’ve happened to Clem and AJ. So you have to go, right now. You try to move past Aasim but he puts a hand in your chest trying to stop you. You hit it off.
You: “Get out of the way.”
Aasim: “We can all go in the morning, just wait.”
You: “Get out... Of the way.”
Aasim: “No.”
Violet: “Damn it, Aasim! Just let us go!”
Aasim: “You guys aren’t thinking straight!”
You: “Fuck you!”
Violet: “We need to go! Now!”
Aasim: “I can’t go with you! It’ll just be the three of you!”
You: “That’s fucking fine!”
Aasim: “No! It’s fucking dangerous!”
You’re about to respond when Brody’s voice comes from behind you.
Brody: “Guys?”
You turn around as she walks up in front of you all. You step forward a bit.
You: “You should be resting.”
Brody: “I was... But then something woke me up.”
You: “...Sorry.”
Brody: “What’s.... What’s going one?”
You: “We’re... We’re gonna try and find Clem and AJ. Again. We found them but got separated again, so we’re going after them again.”
Brody: “Do you have to go now?”
You: “Clem got hurt, and there was a herd. I’m... Really worried.”
Brody takes you hands.
You: “....I need to go now.”
Brody: “I get it.”
She looks at Aasim.
Brody: “Let them go.”
Aasim: “It’s a bad idea.”
Brody: “Just let them go, Aasim.”
Aasim thinks of a second, he reluctantly agrees.
Aasim: “Fine. Come on.”
Aasim goes to the gate with Violet and Louis. You stand with Brody for a second.
You: “I’m sorry... But I have to go after them.”
Brody: “I get it, it’s fine. Just... Promise you’ll come back.”
You: “I will. I swear.”
Brody: “Ok... Now, go find them.”
You: “Thank you..”
You kiss her quickly.
You: “...Thank you.”
You run to the gate where Violet and Louis are waiting.
Violet: “Are we going now?”
You: “Yeah. Let’s go.”
You all run into the woods heading back the way you and Violet came. You run for a few minutes, you stop in the middle of the woods.
Violet: “How are we gonna find them?”
You: “There’s no way they got to far away from that herd. Look for walkers.”
Violet: “That’s stupid, they would’ve gotten away.”
You: “Did you see Clem's leg? They definitely stopped somewhere. And the herd would’ve followed them.”
Louis starts snapping his fingers, he’s pointing at a small group of walkers, they’re not paying attention to you. So they’re paying attention to something else.
You: “Trust me, Violet. We need to follow the walkers, and avoid getting bitten.”
Violet: “...Fine.”
You all start to follow the walkers, killing the ones that get to close. After a while, you feel the sun on your face, it’s just come up. You, Violet and Louis stay as close as possible to each other. Too many walkers start to notice you so you have to run, Louis hits your arm and points to a wooden fence, you don’t know what’s on the other side, but hopefully it’s better than the walkers. You run and all vault over it.
Violet: “We’ve gotten nowhere by following walkers! We need to make a different plan!”
You: “No, we don’t! This is getting us closer, I can feel it!”
Violet: “If we’re closer, then where are they?”
You: “I don’t know! But they’re close!”
The conversation is cut off by an extremely loud scream, it sounds like a woman.
Violet: “That.... That’s them.”
You: “We have to go. Now!”
The three of you run towards the scream, as you do you run into the beginning of a herd. You all just ignore the walkers, but the herd gets thicker, and thicker, and thicker, until you can’t go on any more. You start killing walkers.
You: “Fuck’s sake. Fuck’s sake!”
Violet: “Cover yourself. Both of you, cover yourselves. Now.”
You all start cutting walkers up and cover yourselves and each other, you throw some walker blood on Louis and he gives you a jokey look.
You: “Good to see you didn’t lose your sense of humour in there.”
He smiles. Violet moves closer to you both and starts to whisper.
Violet: “Stop talking. And walk. Slowly.”
You all walk through the herd, keeping your distance from each other. You make it in front of a barn, you hear some loud crying and screaming coming from the inside. You regroup with Violet and Louis and stay out of the walkers view, you speak in whispers.
You: “We need to clear some walkers.”
Violet: “How?”
You: “I don’t... I don’t fucking know.”
Louis waves his hands around, he clearly has an idea. But he has no way to tell it.
You: “Louis... We just... Is there anyway, you could tell us what it is?”
Louis thinks for a little bit.
Violet: “This is taking too long. If that’s them, we just need to break in.”
You: “And how would we get out?"
Louis waves his hands around again.
Violet: “Lou, we don’t know what you’re trying to say.”
He holds up four fingers.
You: “What?”
He shakes his four fingers around.
Violet: “Four.... Words?”
Louis nods his head. He holds up four fingers again and points at a tree.
You: “Fourth word. Tree.”
He makes a hand gesture as if you’re getting close.
You: “Trees?”
He nods his head again. He holds up two and points down.
Violet: “Second word. Ground?”
He shakes his head. You look at the ground.
You: “There’s nothing there.”
He points down harder.
You: “Down?”
He nods his head.
Violet: “So... Something. Down. Something. Trees.”
Louis holds up one finger on his left hand and makes a knocking gesture with his right.
You: “Knocking?”
He shakes his head.
You: “Knock.”
He nods. You finally realise what he’s trying to say. You get excited.
You: “Oh. Oh. Knock down some trees.”
Louis puts a finger to his nose and points at you.
Violet: “How the fuck do we do that?”
Louis points at your axe.
You: “One of your take it, I’m going into that barn.”
Violet: “It’ll take two people to push a tree down.”
You: “Then both of you go, I’ll be fine going in alone.”
Louis puts a hand on your shoulder and shakes his head.
You: “I’ll be fine. I’m covered guts, just knock down as many as you can.”
Violet: “Please... Be careful.”
You: “I will. Don’t worry about me.”
Louis taps your shoulder a few and give you a confident look, him and Violet run off and you wait for the distraction. You’re watching the barn with the walkers trying to break through the walls. You hear a loud creak, then a few more, then you hear a loud crash, the walkers attention is brought over to the source of the sound. You hear Violet shouting, making sure the walkers definitely move away from the barn.
Violet: “HEY! OVER HERE, YOU ROTTED SHIT BAGS!”
She keeps shouting and you hear another tree go down, you walk through the herd, slowly. You eventually make it to the barn,. You make it round to a broken part of the wall, you enter through break and see a walker try to reach through some bars in a stable gate. You see a pitchfork, you pick it up and drive it through the walkers head. You look through the bars and see a walker lying on the ground, cut open and dead, you also see Clem and AJ. AJ's kinda freaking out a bit and Clem’s lying there, breathing heavily and quickly. You slide the gate door opens me close it as you enter, you kneel next to Clem.
You: “Clem? Clem, what happened?”
You check her over and see that her lower left leg is detached from the rest of her leg, you move to look at it. AJ stand there, not knowing what to do.
You: “AJ, what happened?”
He doesn’t answer.
You: “AJ!”
AJ: “She got bit. I couldn’t kill her... I just... She could survive it.”
You grab him by the shoulder.
You: “Hey, hey, hey. You did the right thing. Alright?”
AJ: “Y-yeah...”
You: “Good. Good... But you need to focus right now, can you do that?”
AJ: “Yeah.”
You: “Good. Go get that walker and drag it over here. Ok?”
AJ: “Yeah. I got this.”
He starts trying to drag the walker by the leg, you go back to Clem. Her breathing is still quickly and heavy.
You: “Clem. Clem, you listening?”
She grabs onto your arm, still breathing sporadically.
You: “You just need to calm your breathing. Clem, look at me.”
She looks at you.
You: “Try and breath slower, ok? Just in.... Then out.”
Clem tries and her breathing gets slightly normal, but not much.
You: “Clem... Breathe... Breathe and talk to me.”
Clem: “I.... It’s..... Fuck.”
You: “I know. I know. Just keep breathing.”
AJ finally brings the walker over to you. You stick your hand in it, pull some guts and start cover Clem in them.
You: “Clem, do think you could stand? At all?”
Clem: “I.... I don’t.....”
She cries in pain. You take off your coat and wrap it around Clem’s stump leg.
You: “Clem, I need you to try and push through the pain. Can you do that?”
Clem just doesn’t answer, she just breathes heavily.
AJ: “Is she going to die?”
You: “If we don’t get out of here now... Maybe.”
You try to lift Clem up.
You: “Come on, Clem... Work with me here.”
Clem: “I don’t... I can’t... Just... I...”
She tries to say something else, but she just starts slipping.
You: “Clem! Stay awake! Come on!”
She doesn’t say anything, her head flops down and her eyes roll back in her head. You check for a pulse, it’s really weak. You rub some more guts on yourself and Clem and pick her up properly.
You: “We're going now! Right now!”
AJ: “But there’s walkers surrounding us.”
You: “Then we’ll kill them and run! Move!”
You go back to the hole in the wall that you came through, there’s walkers still walking around.
You: “Stay close.”
You both move through the herd, you get out without getting to close to any walkers. You make it to the edge of the woods and tune around.
You: “LOUIS! VIOLET! GET BACK TO THE SCHOOL!”
You don’t get a response but you don’t think about it, you just run back to the school through the woods as AJ tries his best to keep up with you. As you run, you meet up with Louis and Violet. You almost fall as you bump into them, they see Clem.
Violet: “Oh, shit. Clem... Clem, what happened? What.... Clem...”
She starts to cry a bit. Louis puts a hand in her then pulls her into a hug, AJ stands there, fully out of breath. Violet breaks out if the hug, you see the tears in her face.
Violet: “What happened? Tell me now!”
You: “She got bit. AJ took the leg off.”
Violet puts a hand on Clem’s head and stands there in worried silence. You look at Louis.
You: “I need to get back now, can you look after both of them.”
He nods.
You: “Thank you.”
Violet: “I’m coming back with you. She... She needs me.”
Tears start coming back into the eyes.
You: “Violet, you’re very emotional, right now. I’ll make sure she’s ok, just trust me.”
Violet: “I need to go with her.”
Louis puts a hand on her arm, but she shakes him off.
Violet: “I’m going back with you!”
You: “I don’t have time to argue. I’m going now, please... Just look after AJ.”
Violet: “...Ok... But, promise me she’ll be alive when I get back.”
You: “Of course she will.”
You don’t say anything else, you just head back to the school. Sprinting the whole way, Willy sees you coming. And gets the gate open for you to run through. You immediately start shouting.
You: “RUBY! AASIM! I... I need... Help.”
You’re starting to feel the tiredness of running flat out for a while. Everyone run to you.
Aasim: “Shit. Is she ok?”
You: “Obviously not, Aasim!”
Your legs wobble and you down on one knee.
You: “Take her... Quickly.”
Aasim takes Clem off you and him and Ruby run to the administration building to look after Clem. You go down on your hands and knees, you didn’t realise how tired you were. Brody tries to help you up.
Brody: “Hey, come on... You need to lie down.”
You: “I... I need to help... Clem, she-“
Brody: “She’ll be alright. You need rest, your a mess.”
You: “...Maybe... You’re right.”
Brody: “I am.”
She helps you over to the couches and you lie down on one.
You: “Not the dorms?”
Brody: “I feel like stairs would be too much for you.”
You: “Yeah.”
Brody kneels down next to you.
You: “Are you ok?”
Brody: “I... I’m fine... You saved me. Just like I knew you would.”
You: “How’d you know that?”
Brody: “I just knew.”
You: “Thanks for having faith in me.”
You put a hand against her face.
You: “I... I went a bit insane, after they took you. I... Ran into the woods with a bad concussion... I missed you so much.”
Brody: “I... It was hell on that boat, they... When they cut out Louis’ tongue I.. I just... I had to hold on to the idea that were coming for me... And then you did.”
She smiles.
You: “Yeah. I did.”
You smile, too. You both sit in each others company for a second she starts leaning in, she stops inches from your face. You whisper when you speak.
You: “I’ll never let you go again. I swear.”
Brody: “I know. I know.”
She kisses you and you kiss her back. You break apart and look into each others eyes. You try to speak but all that comes out are just some noises. Brody laughs a bit.
Brody: “Cat got your tongue?”
You let out a small chuckle.
You: “Something like that.”
Brody kisses you again, it’s short this time.
Brody: “Get some sleep. You’ve gone though a lot in the past couple hours.”
You: “I don’t want to. We have time to catch up on.”
Brody: “Maybe later... Go to sleep.”
You: “I’m fine. I don’t need it.”
You mumble as you say that.
Brody: “Mhmm. Sure you don’t.”
You: “I... Don’t.....”
You fall asleep before you finish. The next morning you wake up on the couch and look around you. Everything seems normal again, sort of calm. But then you aren’t calm, because Clem’s leg. You jump up and race over to the administration building to see if Clem's still there. You run up the stairs and see Louis sitting there, quietly.
You: “Where’s Clem?”
He just looks at you.
You: “Fuck... Is she here?”
He shakes his head.
You: “The dorms?”
He nods.
You: “Thanks, Louis.”
You run down the stairs and over to the dorm building, you sprint to your dorm. You burst through the door. Violet and AJ are both sitting on AJ's he’d while Clem sleeps on hers. Violet gets up as you break through the door.
Violet: “Quiet. Clem’s asleep.”
You: “Sorry.... Sorry.”
You sit pull the chair over to the bed and sit with the two of them. Just waiting for Clem to wake up.
AJ: “Owen?”
You: “Yeah.”
AJ: “Is Clem going to die because of me.”
You: “No. Why would you say that?”
AJ: “I cut her leg off... And now she won’t wake up.”
You move of the chair and kneel right in front of him. You out a hand on his shoulder.
You: “AJ, even if she... Doesn’t make it, it’s not your fault. Alright? You... You have her a chance at life, buddy. You did the right thing. Ok?”
AJ: “Ok.”
You hug AJ.
Violet: “She would’ve died anyway... This way... She might live longer.”
AJ doesn’t say anything, he just stays in the hug with you. You pull back to look at him again.
You: “But... She probably won’t die, alright? We got her here fast enough... She’ll probably pull through.”
AJ: “Can you promise?”
You look at Violet and she looks at you. You don’t know what to say.
Violet: “I... I don’t think we can. But we’re hopeful that she’ll wake up.”
AJ: “O-ok.”
You: “Come here.”
You hug him again, tighter this time, just so he knows that he’s still got you. You sit in the bed next to him and keep an arm around him.
[Time skip: 1 day.]
Clem still hasn’t gotten up. The closet you came was when she groaned a little bit. So she’s definitely alive. AJ left not too long ago to go hunting, you and Violet are still sitting in with Clem.
You: “I... I can’t lose her, Violet. She’s... Basically behalf the reason I’m still alive. The other half is all the other people who died.”
Violet: “She sing dead. We heard her in the night, she’s alive.”
You: “But that doesn’t mean she’ll wake up! Does it?”
She’s taken back by you shouting.
You: “I-I... I’m sorry. I’m just scared... That if she doesn’t come around soon, then she won’t come around at all. And if that happens... What do I do? What does AJ do?”
Violet: “You both stay here, in Texas Two.”
You: “Jesus Christ. We’re making a new name, cause that ones shit.”
Violet: “I think it’s pretty good.”
You: “We aren’t near Texas. And we aren’t a state... Why Texas anyway?”
Violet: “I grew up there, before here.... My dad was a shithead but my mom was pretty good. And most for my happy memories are with my grandparents when they were alive. So... It’s a pretty good name to me.”
You smirk a bit. It’s not too bad with the backstory behind it.
You: “Whereabouts? In Texas.”
Violet: “Austin. We lived in a trailer. It was a real shithole.”
You chuckle.
Violet: “What about you?”
You: “Florence. South Carolina.”
Violet: “Shit. I had you pegged for like... Florida, or some shit.”
You: “No. South Carolina, mostly.”
Violet: “Mostly?”
You: “Yeah. Mom was from Mississippi. At least that’s what dad told me, I never... I don’t really remember her at all. She died when I was four, I was just... Too young to remember.
Violet: “I’m sorry. That musta been pretty shitty.”
You: “Yeah, it was. My sister would distract me, though. We had some forest out the back of the house and we’d play there. One time, we went so far that we came across some farmers barn. He wasn’t happy when he saw us, he chased us all the way back to the house. We obviously went back, many times.”
Violet: “You sound like a pair of troubled youths.”
You: “Maybe, Abbie. But I’m perfectly fine.”
Violet: “Sure you are.”
You both sit in the quiet form a bit.
Violet: “Sorry... That I wouldn’t let you go in the woods. I was... I was worried about Clem and I was being selfish and I just-“
You: “Shut up.”
Violet: “What?”
You: “I would’ve done the same if it was you holding Clem. You don’t need to apologise for loving Clem.”
Violet doesn’t say anything, just smiles. You smile, she sees and hits you.
Violet: “Fuck off.”
You: “I never will.”
It goes quiet again, all you can hear is the breathing from the three of you. Violet gets up.
Violet: “I should... Go round, make sure people aren’t fuck things up.”
You: “That’s the leaders job.”
Violet: “I’m pretty sure Clem’s the leader now.”
You: “She was always doing everything for everyone... I’ll find you when she wakes up.”
Violet: “Thanks.”
She leaves. You sit there, patiently waiting for Clem to wake up. It take about an hour, but she finally comes around. She groans and sits up on the bed, you move beside her.
You: “Clem. How you feeling?”
Clem: “I’m really.... I’m tired.”
You: “Do you remember what happened?”
She thinks for a bit.
Clem: “I remember Minnie on the bridge. But that’s it.”
She looks around.
Clem: “Where’s AJ? Is he ok?”
She tries to get out of bed.
You: “He’s fine. You need to take it easy.
Clem: “Where is he? And where's Violet, and Tenn?”
You: “Violet’s fine and Tenn... Tenn died on the bridge.”
Clem: “What? I need to find Violet or Louis or AJ.”
She tries to get up again but you try to stop her.
You: “Clem, take it easy. There’s... Kinda some big news.”
Clem: “Tell me later.”
She gets up and immediately falls, you catch her. She sees her missing leg.
Clem: “What the... Oh, shit! Owen! Where-Where's my...”
You: “It’s alright. You’re alright. Just calm down.”
You help her sit down on the bed and then sit beside her. She puts her head in her hands, she’s shaking a bit so you pull her in close for a tight hug.
You: “Hey. Hey. You’re alright, Ok? You’re alright.”
Clem: “Where... What happened?”
You pull away from the hug.
You: “Do you not remember?”
Clem: “No. Not really.”
You: “So, Minnie cornered us on the bridge and cut your leg open. Then... You got bit, and AJ cut it off.”
Clem sits in shock staring at her stump.
Clem: “What about Tenn?”
You: “AJ shot him. He was saving Violets life.”
Clem: “...Why don’t I remember it?”
You: “You lost a lot of blood. We weren’t... I wasn’t so sure that you’d make it for a while.”
Clem: “I... I don’t... I can’t...”
You: “Hey. Stop. We’ll... Work something out with this later, we always do. But right now, I’m so happy your alive.”
You hug her again, she hugs back this time. It ends
You: “Never do that again.”
Clem: “I’ll try.”
At the moment Violet walks back in with a pair of crutches.
Violet: “Hey. I found these in the-“
She sees Clem and drops the crutches, she moves and hugs her, then she kisses her.
Violet: “Holy fuck. You’re ok.”
Clem: “Yeah, Vi. I’m fine.”
You pick up the crutches and have a look at them. Their completely wooden and look pretty sturdy.
Violet: “I... I was so worried about you. I’m sorry I wasn’t there... This wouldn’t have happened if I was there.”
Clem: “That’s not true. And this isn’t your fault... It’s... A big shock, though. I don’t know how I’ll get around.”
Violet: “That’s why I brought these back.”
You hand Violet the crutches.
You: “They aren’t as good as an actual leg, but they're pretty good.”
Clem takes them both and stands up with them.
Clem: “Yeah. They're pretty good.”
You: “We should find AJ. He’s been worried about the whole time.”
You all go outside, it takes Clem an little bit longer because she’s getting used to her new extra set of legs, but she manages. You get outside and see Brody, she waves you over.
You: “Hey, are you ok on your own?”
Clem: “I’ll be fine. Just go.”
You: “Thank you.”
You make your way over to Brody. She greets you with a brief hug.
Brody: “So Clem’s awake.”
You: “Yeah. Yeah, she is.”
You fidget with you hands a little bit, Brody takes them both in hers.
Brody: “What is it?”
You: “It’s just... I was so scared. And she’s ok, I can see that she’s ok. But, I dunno, I guess there’s still some worry left.”
Brody: “You’ve been through so much with her. And she went through a lot before you even met.”
You; “I know, I know. But... I’m always gonna be scared about losing her... She basically raised AJ without me, without her... I wouldn’t know what to do.”
Brody: “I’m sure you would’ve worked something out.”
You: “No, I really wouldn’t have. You should’ve seem me with him when he was younger, I was awful... I only got better because she was there to show me what to do. I'm not good with babies."
Brody: “Well, I can picture you with a baby.”
You smile a little bit.
You: “Oh, yeah?”
Her face goes a bit red and drops her head down.
Brody: “I didn’t... That’s not what I... You’re a dick.”
You laugh and lift her head up a bit.
You: “Tell me more about what you’ve pictured.”
Brody: “Stop it. I... You’re embarrassing me.”
You: “Alright, I’m sorry. I’ll stop.”
Brody: “Thank you.”
You both kiss again. This time Willy sees.
Willy: “That’s gross!"
Brody: “No-one told you to look, Willy!"
Willy: “But I still saw it!"
Brody: “Just fuck off!"
Willy runs away.
You: “I love it when you do that.”
She looks away from you shyly.
Brody: “I... I’m sorry. Sometimes I just.... Snap at people sometimes.”
You: “Hey, it’s alright. I said I love it.”
You kiss her again.
You: “I... I love everything about you.”
Brody freezes a bit when you say that. You panic slightly, until she kisses you again, deeply. When she pulls away she has a massive smile on her face.
Brody: “I love you, too.”
You smile. You hear Ruby shouting.
Ruby: “Foods ready everyone. Come and get it.”
Brody: “Shall we?”
You: “We shall.”
You both head over to the table and start to eat weight the others. You all sit easy and laugh, and have a relatively good time. Ruby does a small burp, which AJ follow up with a massive burp.
Aasim: “Goddamn.”
Willy almost died laughing.
Clem: “AJ.”
AJ: “What? It’s good.”
You: “Sure is, buddy.”
Everyone starts to finish up, Violet and Clem leave and head over to another table, AJ follows them, you stay at the main table and finish eating. Louis gets a piece of paper and a pencil, he scribbles something on it and slides it to you. It says “Read out Loud.” You pick it up, look at it and try to read it.
You: “Yeah... Lou... This ain’t English.”
Aasim: “Let me read it. Reading Louis’ handwriting is something only a few of us can do.”
He takes it and read it out loud.
Aasim: “Fantastic as always, Omar.”
Omar: “Why, thank you, Louis.”
Brody: “But, why didn’t you just give it Omar? Why’d you give it Owen?"
He thinks for a second, and then just shrugs.
You: “We need to find some other way to talk to with you, Louis. Because writing stuff down... It’s not gonna work.”
Aasim: “You mean like... Sign language or something?"
You: “Yeah. Something that lets him talk again. That isn't charades.”
Louis smiles.
Brody: “Oh, we could make our own sign language. Something that one else would be able to understand.”
Louis nods his head excitedly at that, but Aasim has some to say.
Aasim: “That would take a long time. We need something now so we can talk to him now.”
Brody: “But other people might know other sign language. If we make our own, then we could talk secretly around strangers.”
You: “It would also just be fun to do."
Louis points at you in agreement.
You: “Come on, Aasim. Have fun for once.”
Aasim: “...Fine. We’ll make out own secret sign language.”
Brody: “Let’s start now.”
Louis gets more paper and scribbles something else on it. He hands it to Brody. She reads it.
You: “What’s it say?”
Brody: “It says we should go to the library to find some books to help us. You coming?”
You: “Maybe later, I wanna check on Clem again.”
Brody: “Ok.”
She looks at Louis
Brody: “Come on.”
They both run off to the library behind the dorm building. You get up and walk over to Clem she’s sitting on the administration building step, by herself. You sit next to her.
You: “How you doing?”
Clem: “I’m alright. I’m just a bit tired with the crutches.”
You: “You’ll get used to it. Where’d AJ go?”
Clem: “Bringing my hat back to the dorm.”
You: “Hang on, are you giving it to him?”
Clem: “Yeah. What’s the problem?”
You: “You threatened to kill me once when I picked that thing up.”
Clem: “Yeah, well... You probably deserved it.”
You laugh a bit. You and Clem both look around the school.
Clem: “It feels weird... Having a safe place to stay.”
You: “I know. I’m just glad we found a safe place or AJ. That’s... That’s something we’ve never had.”
Clem: “....It be nice if Lee and Eddy were both here, with us.”
You: “Yeah. But... If they hadn’t died, you wouldn’t have ended up at that cabin and I wouldn’t have ended up at that Ski lodge. And we’d never have met.”
Clem: “Yeah, that’s true. But... I just wish I still had Lee. I wish I had the chance to meet Eddy. I wish a lot of people were still around.”
You: “You mean like, Luke and Nick?”
Clem: “Or Kenny and Sarah.”
You: “Carlos.”
Clem: “Alvin.”
You: “Would he be, Alvin senior?”
Clem: “I... Think so?”
You both laugh a little, than you think about the rest of the people you’ve lost.
Clem: “I’m going to make sure, that AJ doesn’t lose as many people as we have. I’m going to make sure, that when people die, it’s form old age.”
You: “I think people will only make it to about fifty now, there’s no more doctors.”
Clem: “Then we’ll all make it to fifty.”
You: “Yeah. Let’s make it to fifty.”
You both just look out again in silver.
Clem: “Owen?”
You: “Yeah?”
Clem: “I... I don’t know... Who I’d be without you..... You’re a good friend.”
You: “You, too, Clem. You, too.”
You sit and watch the trees dance in the wind. And for the maybe the first time in eight years, you’re actually at peace.
The End.
That’s it. It’s over. This was actually so much fun to write. I know that in some places it sucked, and I know not everyone might’ve enjoyed it. But I did, so screw you. I counted it as I went along and the total word count for the whole series is over 130,000. This chapter alone was nearly 5000, which I just find mind boggling. I do have another plan for another fic, it would follow Abbie and Chloe in Richmond after season 3. I don’t know if I’ll even post it, but tell me if you would like something like that, or if you want more of this. And let me know what you thought about Darker Days (e.g. favourite bit, something you liked, something you didn’t like, an improvement I could make. Etc.) Also do the vote about what you thought of this entire series. Thank you so much for reading this, I really mean that, and I’ll see you all next time.
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submitted by FudgeSuprme to TWDGFanFic [link] [comments]


2020.09.07 16:45 yallknowme19 The New Owen Anthem

It's the man that you love to hate / Gettin' run outta Washington state / CPS don't like my profile / 'Cause gammas got 'em on speed dial / So the man is on my trail / He wanna take Big Bear to jail / If he does, I'll make the bail / 'Cause I know a lot of rich gay males / I'm shakin' 'em just like this / Keepin' that Porsche in fifth / Gig Harbor cops don't quit / Even when a Youtuber's legit / So they follow me wherever I go / I hear 'em on the radio / With a scanner that I bought from the sto' / 'Cause a brother like Smith gotta know / I'm checkin' them cops with radar / They don't believe I'm a farmer / That my IQ's 147 / An' I'm ready when they follow my car / I know they wanna spray me with mace / 'Cause I keep child porn at my place / But they best get outta my face / 'Cause one times got no case, give it to me /
One times got no case /
The police think I'm makin' CP / They trip 'cause I talk about dicks constantly / Knock on my door an' they yell at Charlie / I'm whippin' out my I.D. / My goats sit under my seat / The cops throw me out in the street / They found my goats like thieves / Officer Friendly has got a new beat / So I show him my goat permit / I told him I roll legit / Give me a test to see if I'm drinkin' / They claim my breath was stinkin' / They had me walk on the line / I walked backwards stopped on a dime / Cause I mainly drink turpentine / And all my gay gut grabblers are dyin' / I'm hip to the SWAT procedure / They get ya everytime they see ya / They stop ya, they cuff ya / They roll ya an' they rough ya / They ask what I do for a livin' / Should this information be givin'? / This is what keeps me driven / Some gammas want a Big Bear in prison / So I got LLoE attorneys / Just in case Patreon wanna burn me / They protect me and arbitrate / 'Cause one time's got no case, break it on down
One times got no case /
A gamma asks me, "What's my name, and don't lie" / And I'm askin' squirt-boy "Why? / Why ya wanna mess with a brother like Smith / When you know I protect trans kids?" / The gamma said, "Don't get smart / I tear Youtube grifters apart" / I said, "Well take off your gun, if you wanna get done / An' I'll show you that I ain't the one" / The gamma rolled up his fist / Tried to squirt 'cause he was so pissed / But i"m 6' 12" so he missed / A CPS worker pulls up and she's pissed / But these gammas weren't from DLive / Some ex-Bear musta dropped dime / I said, "Won't ya help a good man with a good. /family who is crushing outta bind?" / But that badge was going to her mind / So she pulled out her taser too / She said, "Don't think because you're 1/8th Jew / That I won't tase you", ZAP, "Hit you with the gat" Her partner starts to laugh / So they took me on down to the jail / LLoE came to pay my bail / Then we called Vox Day and Randazza / Them's my lawyers / Walkin' up the stairs / To the courtroom dressed in tutus / 'Bout to give a couple cops the boot / So the female cop takes the stand / Told that judge everything I planned / The judge said my lawsuit was frivolous / The arbitrations would continue on the fifth / I'm gonna lose my house / I feel a few tears on my face / Sorry baby, Idaho's my new place / Idaho's my new place / Onward to Beartardia!
To the tune of Sir Mixalot, "One Time's Got No Case."
submitted by yallknowme19 to owenbenjamin [link] [comments]


2020.09.05 20:12 Sam_Ir_Am To prologue, or not to prologue: [1,700 words]

To prologue, or not to prologue—that is the question.
I aware of the many reasons for which prologues are generally frowned upon in fantasy writing. "Get to the point," the reader cries, as they set down yet another book that has failed to quickly and effectively draw them into the story. The cover slams, and Chapter One never sees the light of day.
That being said, I am anything but a pragmatist, and I cannot help but to love prologues. My question for you, should you choose to accept it, is this: what (if anything) do you get out of the passage below? Does it pique any interests? Stimulate any curiosities? I may indeed need to axe this prologue eventually, but as the rest of my book currently stands, I feel that these few pages give some background that would be awkward to wedge into the first chapter. Every budding author says that of their shitty prologue, I know, but bear with me.
- u/Sam_Ir_Am

Prologue: Parchment


Scrape. Scrape. Scrape.
Dust motes floated lethargically past thin windows. They danced to a silent song, passing here and there as they swirled around unsteady pillars of books and the legs of furniture. Warm, late-summer sunlight drew sharp lines through the meandering throng, but it was a feeble attempt to impose any order on the small, sandstone room. Piles of parchment and cracked leather bindings vied for space on the cramped floor, while specks of light danced carelessly through sunbeams only to disappear into shadows once again. Pages rustled—a table creaked. The dust swirled. It never did much of anything, really, other than swirl, and occasionally elicit a muffled cough from the room’s sole occupant.
Scrape. Scrape. Scrape.
A hunched figure rocked methodically over a sheet of stretched-out parchment. Long, ink-dark hair pooled in braids on the woman’s shoulders as she worked. Her hands traveled with practiced ease over the surface of the page, first wetting it from the bowl of milk and silt at her side, then scraping it clean with a small, curved tool. Ink ran off the page in dark rivulets, sliding down the angled wooden panel on which it lay to collect in a bucket at its base. Flakes of thicker, metallic ink occasionally floated to the surface of the opaque liquid, filigree clusters mimicking the shapes they had so recently formed on the page. The woman’s hands moved decisively between page and bowl, passing in and out as she washed and abraded and scraped and wiped with the deft touch only brought by years of repetition. Slowly, the parchment lost all distinguishing features, as words drained away and colors faded to cream.
Scrape. Scrape.
Sigh.
Serra set aside her tools and stretched with a groan. She was tall—taller than one would have guessed from her hunched profile. Her white tunic bore no decorations besides the occasional spatter of ink, as if it, too, had suffered the soaking and scraping as the parchment before her. Serra stretched again, arms now extending upward, and the dust motes reveled at this new member to their dance. The woman coughed, and twisted to pop her back, and upset a pillar of books, and all became a mad tumble of light and limb and dust and ink.
Thud.
“Shit!”
Creak.
The room’s single door cracked open, revealing the curious eyes of a young boy. His face passed quickly through confusion to concern, coming to rest on childish glee as he took in the chaos of the cluttered chamber. The boy picked a tottering path across the messy floor towards the fallen woman, who was vainly trying to extract herself from the still-damp pages that clung to her person. “Mum I was gonna ask if I can help today,” he giggled. “I fink I shoulda been faster.”
Serra straightened quickly at his words—bumping her head on a table corner in the process—and managed to contain a second expletive. She climbed to her feet and glanced lovingly at the boy, performing a quick mental inventory of her scattered workstation before meeting his gaze with a subtle smirk.
“Young Page,” she huffed in mock annoyance. “Your kin have been treating me poorly today,” she said, gesturing to the parchments scattered widely about her. The boy pulled up short with a frown, opening his mouth to defend himself, only to be swept up into a damp hug before he could get a word out.
“I’m kidding, El, I’m kidding,” his mother said softly, using one thumb to smear a faint line of ink onto his laughing face. “You aren’t an annoying page like these ones. You’re my special Page, and you bring me nothing but joy. Although you have been remarkably messy lately, I must say. Have you been getting into trouble up in the university gardens again, you little ink splotch?” She tugged at the incriminating mud-stains on the knees of El’s tunic, and he squirmed out of her arms to run and hide behind a stack of particularly cumbersome tomes.
“No no no I was playing wif the cats an’ one of they ran off into the bushes and they have kiddies unner the bushes an’ I wasn’ a trouble to anyone!” El rattled of his story in one breath, peering out over the walls of his bookish fortress. “Also mister Merrymas was there an’ he always gives me a candy an’ he woudn’a give me a candy if I was a trouble so I wasn’a trouble to nobody.” The boy seemed pleased with this logic, as he smiled and stepped out from behind his cover.
Serra, however, was still looking at him with an appraising eye. “Do you mean that mister Merrymas only gives you candy when you’re a helpful little boy, and therefore that you must have been good if he gave you a sweet, or do you mean that mister Merrymas only gives you candy when you’re a good little boy, and therefore that you acted helpful just so you could get something out of it?” Her hands were on her hips, her expression stern, though the hint of a laugh played at the corners of her eyes.
“No no no ummmm I...” The boy trailed off with a pained expression. “Yeah?” He peered hesitantly up at his mother for affirmation.
Serra smiled affectionately at the confused child, then ruffled his hair and turned back toward the mess that was her handiwork. “Don’t worry, little page, I meant nothing of it.” She let a flash of annoyance cross her face once it was hidden from El’s view. There would be a lot more work today than she had bargained for, now that she had cleaning to do on top of the usual parchment scrubbing. Her merchant buyer would be leaving tomorrow at the sixth hour, and she needed to get everything out in the sun before she slept if there was to be any chance of it all drying in time to sell. If I were still on the road, none of this would have
But no matter. Those days were gone for now, and it would be years more before she could consider taking El with her. Serra turned back around to the boy, who was poking curiously through one of the large books by his side. It was a thick treatise on the suns of Old Fall—full of speculation and long since out of date, yet written on salvageable parchment. The covers were of dark, still-pliable leather, and she was sure that the volume could be sold to the university as a unit once scrubbed and reassembled, rather than divided up into scraps for the traveling merchants.
“Have you finished the problems I gave you yesterday, El?” Serra spoke to the boy absentmindedly as she began sorting through the larger parchment sheets on the floor. El did not look up from his dusty book, instead tracing one finger along the complex solar diagrams laid out in front of him. “I did ‘em last night,” he mumbled, “cuz I couldn’ sleep cuz the yoonversidy people was loud outside.”
“Hmmm, yes the older students have been quite raucous recently,” Serra muttered to herself before smiling at the boy. “Good work, El. Although they are un-i-versi-ty students, not yoonversidy people. And they were loud, not they was loud. How about the sunlight in our room? I assume that it’s too bright, if you’ve been able to work on your problems while I sleep. It’s that dratted crack in the door again, isn’t it? Tomorrow while I’m out, I’ll see if I can’t find something to patch it up with. Perhaps that will keep the noise from outside down as well, eh?”
“Mum what’s a longbar?” El asked with a tilt of his head. “All the liddle words are too big an’ I don’ know what they mean but this one’s all fancy an’ impotent.” The page he was leaning over contained a map of the western coast, dotted with the occasional city or sun and superimposed with a dense lattice of solar boundary lines. One city stood out amongst the rest, both for its sprawling size and for the large, archaic script that some skilled calligrapher had worked into the city’s title.
“Impotent?” Serra cocked one eyebrow as she stuffed the pages she was sorting under one arm. “Let me take a look. Ah, yes, Old Longbar. It’s one of the largest cities by the ocean, little page. I’ve never been, even back when I was a merchant, but I do trade with some merchants who travel that far. Although the word is important, El, not impotent. People won’t be able to tell what you mean if you say impotent. But yes, it is quite an important looking city, isn’t it? It even has a port. Doubly important, eh?” She sniffed at her own joke. “Anyway. Oh, El, can you tell me anything about the way ‘Old Longbar’ was written?”
The boy stopped tracing the curving astronomical diagrams and ran his pointer finger over the semi-reflective gold and splotchy grey of the city’s name. “Ummmm it’s got gold on it so it must be fancy, an’ it’s too squiggled to read so it musta been write by an old person.” He poked at the smudged, greyish portions of the words, but said no more.
“Do you remember what I told you about those faded bits you’ve got there? Or what about this green stuff on the ocean that comes off on your finger?” El just shrugged, so Serra went on. “These grey bits that look like someone smeared the ink are old silver pigment,” she said as she pointed out a few examples. “It seeps into the surrounding parchment over time, unlike the finer gold inks, like this kind, which stay put. And this green stuff is old copper-based pigment. Careful with your hands after you’ve been poking at that, El, and make sure to wash them after this. Actually, you probably should anyway, because I can see that you never washed up after crawling around in the gardens. Although, I guess, now that you’re already an ink-smudged little goblin, do you want to help Mum clean up her mess?” She gestured to the room at large.
El looked up at that, and grinned, and closed his book.

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2020.09.03 07:14 TodaystheDayeee In honor of the 75th anniversary of the end of WW2 (Sep. 2nd 1945), here's the Ares and Wonder Woman transcript to my next video.

"To me you are the most hateful of all gods who hold Olympus. Forever quarrelling is dear to your heart, wars and battles." - Zeus, Iliad, Book 5
Our story begins in Olympus in the time of the old gods but it could be anywhere at anytime. Hera, Queen of Olympus, Goddess of Marriage and Women had a son with her older brother and husband Zeus, the King of the Gods. They brought forth Ares, God of War and personification of the primal carnage of men. Not just war, the brutality of it. He would wage a war against love and unleash death where death need not be.
But Ares was not the only name used to invoke war. Not even the first. It's actually not clear where or when it first manifested. In the long prehistoric infancy of our species large scale conflict was likely not even possible. Contact was probably limited to fights over game as small bands or tribes followed herds, staying close to fresh water and foraging grounds. One of the earliest cemeteries called Jebel Sahaba in the Nile river valley near the border of Sudan and Egypt dates back at least 11,600 years. Of the 61 individuals found, 26 skeletons had arrowhead fragments near them or in some cases still embedded in them, causing speculation of a massacre. There was also evidence of healed injuries indicating persistent raids.
In 2005, excavation work began in Hamoukar, a large archaeological dig near the Iraqi and Turkish borders. The settlement there dates back to the 5th millennium BCE, but it was destroyed about 3500 BCE. Slings and thousands of clay bullets have been found among the ruins, possibly evidence of the earliest urban warfare discovered so far.
Then finally, writing began in Egypt and soon after the Palette of Narmer is inscribed. It tells the story of the 1st pharaoh of a unified Egypt vanquishing his rivals. This marks the beginning of the first dynasty about 3100 BCE in the mythical, as yet undiscovered capital city of Thinis which worshiped the Egyptian God of war, Anhur, the slayer of enemies.
The rest, as they say, is history and there is a lot of it.
The causes of war are simple. Simple needs. Simple desires. Desperation and greed. All seven deadly sins. All four horseman. Some call it the devil, temptation and evil. Bad thoughts, bad words, bad deeds.
And the story begins again around 850 years before the common era. A man of myth and his followers establish a city of mostly male bandits. Shortly after they throw a festival and announce it to the neighboring cities as a celebration. During the festival, the myth tells of 30 young women, all but 1 a virgin, who were abducted by their hosts and later implored to marry their abductors. The mythical man is known as Romulus and the newly founded city was Rome.
The scene becomes popular among artists and sculptors and is known as The Rape of the Sabine Women. The resulting hostility with the surrounding tribes erupted into the invasion of Rome which they fought back. Rome was quickly becoming a powerful force and defeated 3 neighboring tribes. It was soon on the offensive against King Titus Tatius of the Sabines, fighting against the fathers of their abducted wives. Intervention finally came, according to Roman historian Livy when the women,
"from the outrage on whom the war originated, with hair disheveled and garments rent, the timidity of their sex being overcome by such dreadful scenes, had the courage to throw themselves amid the flying weapons, and making a rush across, to part the incensed armies, and assuage their fury; imploring their fathers on the one side, their husbands on the other, "that as fathers-in-law and sons-in-law they would not contaminate each other with impious blood, nor stain their offspring with parricide, the one their grandchildren, the other their children. If you are dissatisfied with the affinity between you, if with our marriages, turn your resentment against us; we are the cause of war, we of wounds and of bloodshed to our husbands and parents. It were better that we perish than live widowed or fatherless without one or [the] other of you."
- THE HISTORY OF ROME. BY TITUS LIVIUS, or "Livy"
A treaty was struck, and the Sabines united with the Romans as one nation. Titus Tatius ruled with Romulus until his death five years later and as we all know, Rome was just getting started. Like the Spartans and Egyptians before them, the Romans had an affinity with their war God, this time known as Mars.
There are many other war gods and goddesses as well such as Agasaya, Agrona, Agurzil, Ah Chuy Kak, Ah Cun Can, Ah Hulneb, Ahulane, Alala, Alaisiagae, Al-Qaum, Alke, Amphillogiai, Anahita, Anann, Anath, Andarta, Andraste, Androktasiai, Anhur, Ankt, Anouke, Apedemak, Aray, Ares, Ashtart, Ashur and Athena. And that ladies and gentlemen, is just the A's.
The longest conflict in history is the Reconquista on the Iberian Peninsula between the Christians in what is now Spain and the conquering Muslims who invaded in the year 711. It lasted 781 years, finally ending with the 10 year long Granada War. Christian forces made a massive offensive push, recruiting farmers to swell their ranks, destroying enemy crops and pushing the Muslims towards the sea. It ended on Jan. 2nd, 1492 with the surrender of Islamic rule. 7 other wars or conflicts lasted longer than 500 years. Another 106 wars lasted longer than 50 years. But the God of war is insatiable and humanity was about to manifest the most destructive incarnation the world had yet seen.
In 1162, in a desolate place where food and luxury was scarce, a baby was born in exile from a disgraced family. He would go on to become a warrior and unite the Mongol tribes as Genghis Khan. His conquest was fueled by fear. He readily employed brutal tactics like spreading disease by catapulting the dead over walls. So many people died that weather patterns were disturbed and forest grew back on previously populated land. The Mongol horde trampled empires, handing down ultimatums of death or alliance. Fear spread like a plague, and the horde rode in behind it destroying some to tame the rest. Khan would promise protection and relative normalcy in exchange for complete surrender and regular tributes. Those made subordinate became sources of income, fueling the Khan’s engine of war. For a brief moment in time, Genghis Khan and the Khan's that followed carved out the largest contiguous empire on Earth.
Perhaps the deadliest confrontation in history took place under Hulagu Khan during the Siege of Baghdad in 1258, which lasted only 13 days. At the time, Baghdad was the capital of the Islamic Abbasid Caliphate. Their leader, Al-Musta'sim, was either overconfident or incompetent or both. When the Mongols had overcome the city's defenses they executed Al-Musta'sim and massacred the people leaving it greatly depopulated. Contemporary accounts state Mongol soldiers looted and destroyed mosques, palaces, libraries, and hospitals. The Grand Library of Baghdad, called the House of Wisdom, containing countless historical documents and books on medicine to astronomy, was destroyed. Priceless books torn apart, their leather covers used as sandals, their contents dumped in the river with the dead. Its said the Tigris ran red from the blood of philosophers and scientists and then turned black from the ink of their wisdom. The siege is considered to mark the end of the Islamic Golden Age.
This level of carnage would not be unleashed again in so short a time until the 20th century during WW1 and again just 1 generation later in WW2. The Siege of Leningrad alone, which lasted from 1941 to 1944, would leave 1 million to 5.5 million dead. Then the Battle of Stalingrad began in August 1942. It lasted into the winter and added again to list of bloodiest battles in the history of warfare. Air raids dropped bombs on civilians as fighting devolved into close-quarter, house-to-house combat. Both sides poured reinforcements into the city and by the end, as many as 2 million were dead. After five months, one week and three days of fighting the Axis forces had exhausted their ammunition and food, finally forced to surrender in February 1943. It was a turning point in the war that began pushing the Nazi's back to Berlin.
In the middle of this hell on Earth, in July 1942, Wonder Woman issue #1 - The Origin of Wonder Woman is released by DC Comics. In it, for some reason, she's carrying a parchment in her outfit which tells the history of the Amazons. Of course, she loses it and obviously someone at the Smithsonian gets it and translates it so we all get to learn what's happening now.
The story returns us to Olympus, Aphrodite is arguing with Ares over who will rule the world - men and violence and hate and war or women with love. Their argument spills over onto Earth. Women throughout the world are enslaved by Ares. Aphrodite turns the tables with a magic girdle she gives to the Amazons. The girdle is eventually stolen by Hercules who enslaves them. Aphrodite intervenes again, granting the Amazons the power to break the chains and remain free for as long as they refuse to submit to men. Their strength lie in the bracelets they wear as reminders of the chains that enslaved them. Away from the influence of men, they create a utopian civilization called Paradise Island.
But back in the real world on a different island in the Pacific theater of WW2, Ares was about to transform the meaning of war and place humanity's very existence on a knife's edge.
bellum omnium contra omnes (Latin phrase meaning "the war of all against all")
On July 16th 1945, the US detonated the first atomic bomb in New Mexico as part of a test. 9 days later the decision to drop one on Japan was made and Allied forces issued the Potsdam Declaration on July 26th which handed down an ultimatum of complete surrender or "the inevitable and complete destruction of the Japanese armed forces and just as inevitably the utter devastation of the Japanese homeland". The bomb wasn't mentioned and it ultimatum was rejected.
On August 2nd, Truman and other high profile US officials boarded the USS Augusta, headed back home across the Atlantic. A group gathered in Secretary of State James Byrnes’s cabin the first night at sea to watch a movie. It was called Wonder Man. A nightclub owner is murdered by gangsters but comes back as a ghost to haunt his killers. Truman stayed in his cabin, perhaps thinking about the explosion that was coming and the weight of his choices. He had written in his diary the day of the decision that, "the target will be a purely military one". It's hard to imagine he didn't know better.
About 3 days later, on the other side of the world, Tsutomu Yamaguchi was going to work at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries for what was supposed to be his last day in the city. It was 8:15 AM, on August 6th, 1945 in Hiroshima, Japan and an estimated 70,000 people were about to die. Yamaguchi heard a plane overhead, he looked up and saw The Enola Gay B-29 bomber and he saw the object drop and the parachute attached to it. What dropped was an atomic bomb equivalent to 18,000 tons of TNT. It was more powerful than the previous largest bomb ever used in warfare by more than 1,500 times.
Yamaguchi described the blast like “the lightning of a huge magnesium flare.” He had barely been able to dive into a ditch before the boom ruptured his eardrums and the shock wave sucked him into the air and tossed him into a nearby potato patch. His face and forearms were badly burned and he thought he might of fainted for awhile but he was alive. He described everything like the start of an old film before the picture begins, "when the blank frames are just flashing up without any sound." The morning sun was blotted out by dust and debris and falling ash. A mushroom cloud of fire was rising over Hiroshima. He was less than two miles from ground zero.
A mile and a half away, half a mile from ground zero, Shigeyoshi Morimoto was luckier than 95% of the others within the same blast radius. The master kite maker was part of a secret military study to use kites against American planes. Suddenly he found himself under the rubble of his cousins home where he was visiting but Morimoto, his cousin, and his cousin's son all survived.
He said in an interview by Robert Trumbull in 1956 that it was like a lightning flash, then "the house collapsed and we were pinned beneath the fallen ceiling and roof." When they dug themselves out they couldn't believe level of destruction. Every building was flattened within a mile of the explosion, and fire would soon destroy every building within a 4.5 square mile radius. Within weeks, another 70,000 would die in the aftermath.
Sixteen hours after the explosion, a video was released of President Harry Truman revealing the existence of the atomic bomb to the world for the first time. “It is a harnessing of the basic power of the universe,” he said. “The force from which the sun draws its power has been loosed against those who brought war to the Far East.”
Truman was actually still aboard the USS Augusta in the Atlantic ocean. He was having lunch when a navy captain delivered the message. Truman turned to his Secretary of State James Byrnes and shouted, “It’s time for us to get on home!” He then addressed the sailors in the mess-hall, calling for attention by banging silverware against a glass. The sailors went quiet and Truman made his announcement to an explosion of applause. Morale was soaring all over the Augusta. A sailor's quote summed it up best saying, “I guess I’ll go home sooner now.”
Yamaguchi was thinking about home too. In a daze, he found a couple coworkers who also survived. After taking shelter for a night, the three began making their way toward the somehow still operational train. They trekked through a desolated city of smoldering fires, crumbled buildings and the charred and melted corpses of the dead. Yamaguchi was forced to swim through floating bodies at a river crossing because the bridges were twisted wreckage. All to reach the station, where he boarded a train full of other burned and bewildered passengers.
Morimoto had gone back to the hotel he was staying at for work. It was badly damaged but still standing and three of his colleagues were alive. They got permission to leave the city on August 8th. The four men along with Yamaguchi were trying to get back home, to Nagasaki.
At least three trains made the 190 mile trip from Hiroshima to Nagasaki and arrived there by August 9th, the day that city would be bombed. 165 survivors from Hiroshima are thought to have traveled to Nagasaki and lived through the 2nd explosion as well. People who experienced both attacks are called “nijyuu hibakusha,” or “twice-bombed person.”
Yamaguchi reported for work at Mitsubishi’s Nagasaki office and at about 11 a.m. he was giving a full report on Hiroshima. He recounted what he could, the blinding light, the deafening boom, the devastation—but his superior didn't believe it, didn't believe a single bomb could destroy an entire city. Suddenly, another white flash exploded outside. Yamaguchi dropped just seconds before office windows were shattered by the shock wave and debris blew through the room. In his panic, he thought it had followed him but he had just survived a 2nd atomic bombing in 3 days.
He ran out of the wrecked building and past the ravaged city to get home to his wife and son. When he got there part of his house was a pile of rubble but they were alive and barely hurt. His wife had left to buy burn ointment for him, and she and the baby were near a tunnel when the bomb dropped. If Yamaguchi hadn't been burned in Hiroshima, his family might have been killed in Nagasaki.
Morimoto, the kite maker, had just finished describing the atomic bomb to his wife when their house was suddenly flooded with the same blinding flash. He was shouting as he shoved his wife and son into their air-raid shelter and pulled the heavy door shut behind him as their home was destroyed. Morimoto and his family were also uninjured.
But many others were not lucky. Roughly 200,000 people died after four months, about half on the first day, from the effects of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It remains the only nuclear bombing used in warfare and although Hiroshima had a sizable military garrison, most of the dead were civilians. After the immediate aftermath, people continued to die in the thousands for months from burns, radiation sickness, and injuries, made even worse by illness and malnutrition. Japan surrendered to the Allies on August 15th, six days after Nagasaki and the Soviet Union had also declared war on them. Japanese government officials signed documents on September 2, effectively ending the war and beginning occupation.
It is generally thought the casualties from the bombings is at or near the low estimates for casualties had the war continued on the ground. It was feared the number of dead could reach a million or more if the Allies invaded the Japanese homeland. Americans were also war weary, the massive operations were expensive, and military strategists were worried about the Soviet Union expanding its influence in the East. However, the debate over the ethical and legal justification for the bombings in still debated today.
But it didn't matter then. The war was over and America was celebrating. Humanity began to rebuild but there was little time to reflect. The full implications of what had happened were still coming into focus. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, William Leahy once decried the use of atomic weapons as "an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages", but in 1947 he reported a military requirement for 400 atomic bombs . The Soviet Union detonated an atomic test in September 1949. Oppenheimer, concerned about the devastation that future nuclear war could bring, was stripped of his job and commission. Despite his opposition, the U.S. had developed and tested a Hydrogen bomb by 1952. Ordinary fission bombs like the ones dropped in Japan would henceforth be regarded as small tactical nuclear weapons, a thousand times weaker than the new versions. The US had 23,317 nuclear weapons and the Soviet Union had 40,159 by 1986. More than 90% of the world's remaining 13,865 nuclear weapons were owned by Russia and the United States at the start of 2019. Over 2,000 nuclear tests have been conducted in over a dozen locations around the world by 8 different countries. 9 countries have nuclear weapons.
A team of researchers studied 1,024 species of mammals, and found the rate of lethal violence between Homo sapiens is 7 times higher than the average among all mammals. A different study found that although there are 7.6 billion humans we make up just 0.01% of all living things. In other words, humans are statistically insignificant, not only in the universe but on Earth as well and yet since the dawn of civilization, humanity has caused the loss of 83% of all wild mammals and half of plants. And now our seeming dominance has put us on a path quite possibly to our own destruction. Unwittingly in some cases, proudly in others and cynically in some.
When Yamaguchi's son died from cancer at 59 in 2005, he went public with his story. After remaining silent since his 1950's interview, he began speaking out against nuclear war. Of the estimated 165 people who experienced both attacks and lived, he became the first and only survivor to be officially recognized by the Japanese government as “nijyuu hibakusha,” the “twice-bombed person.” A year later in 2010, he died at the age of 93. He said he got through the many years after the bombings with poetry.
It may seem as if the God of war is at his most powerful, feeding constantly on the chaos in the world and now humans have amassed the potential for total destruction. In the myths and the comics, Ares had done his best throughout the years to destroy the Amazons, sending Hercules against them and sacking their island but he had another plot for all humanity. To spark a war between the United States and Russia, provoking World War III. His ambitions were only thwarted when he was finally forced to face the truth that without the chaos of men he would cease to exist, having no one to worship him.
However, there would be survivors in this nightmare, like the Ginkgo biloba. A ginkgo tree survived in Hiroshima less than a mile from ground zero. It's nicknamed the Tree of Life and it happens to be the oldest species of tree on earth, dating back 270 million years. It also smells like vomit, helping it to survive thousands of generations of grazing animals. Along with the Ginkgo tree, other survivors would probably include rats, cockroaches, ants, scorpions, flies, wasps, worms, bacteria like E. coli, amoebas and the seemingly indestructible tardigrade. It wouldn't be the most pleasant world, but it would still be alive.
And the story begins again, one more time. There was once a utopia. At least that's what outsiders had come to think. It made sense from far away. It had been mostly forgotten, cut off from the world and for a long time no one questioned this supposed utopia. It had achieved an almost mythic, paradise lost status until finally an explorer came to stay there for awhile. At first it seemed the view from the outside was correct. But one day their leader died leaving a power vacuum and a tyrant emerged to fill it. Not all were willing to follow. A group of dissenters separated, forming a smaller group but this did not bring peace. A member of the new group was ambushed one day without warning, beaten badly and was never seen again. Over the next four years the smaller group was picked off 1 by 1 and systematically destroyed. The victors ate the flesh and drank the blood of their victims. They celebrated over the dead with hoots and screams. The explorer was horrified. There was no mercy. But it wasn't men that did these things, not this time. These were the events observed in the jungles of Gombe Stream National Park in Tanzania from 1974 to 1978 during the Gombe Chimpanzee War. The explorer was Jane Goodall. By the end, 10 were dead or missing and only 3 females remained. They were beaten and kidnapped and in that way the two groups became 1 again.
Goodall discovered the systematic hunting strategies and aggressive nature of chimpanzees, exposing their cannibalism and taste for smaller primates. She turned conventional wisdom upside down and found it difficult to come to terms with what she saw herself. But she also observed peaceful and affectionate behaviors, intelligence, emotions, social bonds and forced man to redefine itself, "or accept chimpanzees as human".
In 2019, there were at least 29 conflicts or wars where more than 100 people lost their lives including 17 minor conflicts, 9 wars and 4 major wars in Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria and the Mexican drug war. But despite the headlines. Despite the violence. Despite the tragedy and chaos and the potential destructive power Ares or Anhur or Mars could unleash on humanity at any minute. Despite how things might feel right now. Overall, things are getting better and can get better.
Because something else happened in the 20th century. It was said that a soul of an unborn daughter held back from creation when the first woman was murdered by a man, was put inside a baby girl made out of clay from paradise island. The baby girl was given life by the Greek Pantheon of Goddesses and named Diana. She grew up among a legion of sisters and mothers and became the champion of the Amazons and emissary to the world of men. They would call her Wonder Woman.
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2020.08.30 04:31 madoto-78 My Nonno's convenience store sells something special beneath the counter

I lived above my Grandparents’ convenience store, opposite the train station with the highway overpass adjacent. Dan’s and Dimmy’s 24/7 Milk Bar was a lonely shop with a neon sign, reading WELCOME in the window. My Nonno sold silver bags beneath the counter. Although he’d been nominated for a few charity awards in the city, the rest of our neighborhood hated Nonno for selling them. I noticed growing up the glares people would send my grandparents, servers ignoring us at stores and restaurants. The side of our house was always covered in graffiti, the mail was never put in our letterbox, just dumped in the dirt.
All of this definitely gave me issues growing up. I always tried extra hard to be “good.” On all my school reports every teacher praised me for being “a diligent student and eager to learn.”
When I was younger, my older siblings, Junior and Ella would let me tag along with them and their friend, Harrison. Normally we kept inside the wetlands next to the overpass but one day we rode our bikes beyond. We’d been racing each other around when Junior noticed a girl on her bike in the distance.
“I haven’t seen her at school?” said Junior. “Maybe she’s from the factories. Nonno says all the girls who live out there are whores.”
Nonno fed me and Junior pretty warped ideas about women and at that age we believed every word. Harrison, the most outgoing of us, rode up to the girl. Soon, he was bringing her over to us.
“This is Abbey,” he said. “She’s from the industrial area.”
Junior raised his eyebrows at me as if to say ‘I told you so.’
Ella had a narrow look as she said; “I’m Anabella and these are my brothers Giordano Junior and Christopher.”
Ella was very envious of girls who talked to Harrison.
“I was just headin’ to Silver Road,” said Abbey. “They’ve started selling custard donuts for 2 dollars at the servo.”
That grabbed me and Junior’s attention. Harrison’s face curled up in disgust as we sent excited looks to each other. We started scrounging around our pockets for coins.
“Yeah we got enough!” said Junior. “Please Ella can we go?”
She just shrugged and Junior let out a whoop of excitement. Soon we were all peddling off. We cycled through the wetlands, squinting against the damp wind blowing into our eyes. It was the furthest we’d ever biked but Abbey wasn’t puffed at all.
“Do you do sports?” asked Harrison to Abbey. “I do swimming. I wanna get to the Olympics when I’m grown up.”
We rode on, Ella sulkily falling to the back.
“Harrison has a crush on her,” said Junior to me. “I’m not having sex til I’m married. If you sleep around you attract dirty women. If you’re chaste you attract clean women.”
It took us nearly an hour to ride over to the factories. Riding past an abandoned caravan, we pulled up next to the curb. Silver Road was a dead-end street, running off into the wetlands. The huge smokestacks of the refinery stood against the horizon, the stench of motor oil thick in the air.
Across the road was the service station with a big sign in the door that read CLOSED FOR PUBLIC HOLIDAYS.
“We rode all the way here for nothing?” said Ella, glaring over at Abbey. Abbey couldn’t look at us, her shoulders stiff. I felt a thrum of sympathy for her. It wasn’t her fault it was closed.
“Darling?” a voice called out from behind us. “Darling?’
We all looked around. The voice was coming from the caravan we’d thought was abandoned. A fat woman wearing round sunglasses was standing behind the screen door.
“Lunchtime!” the woman called. “Bring your little friends along too.”
Then she disappeared into the darkness again.
“Is that your mum?” Ella said mockingly. Abbey didn’t answer.
“Do you want lunch?” she asked.
“Well I guess to make up for your lie,” Ella replied. Harrison shrugged and then followed Abbey towards the caravan, the rest of us behind him.
Inside, the caravan was dark and dank. We all blinked, trying to make out our surroundings. I could hear someone playing the piano from a closed door to the side.
“Maybe we should leave?” I whispered to Junior. “What about stranger danger?”
“Don’t be a pussy,” Junior hissed back. “I’m starving, I want lunch.”
The corridor opened up into a kitchen, gloomy and smelling strongly of mould. The woman waddled over to a table and booth seat, pulling a rotisserie chicken, a bottle of coke and a cake box out of a shopping bag. She was still wearing her sunglasses despite the darkness of the room.
We all squashed up together in the booth seat. The woman hadn’t given us anything to eat with. Abbey gave her a pointed look and she stared confusedly back at her. Then Abbey made a motion with her hands, miming using cutlery.
The woman grabbed a bunch of plastic plates, cups and cutlery from the bag, dumping it on the table. Then she went and sat on a folding chair across the room. Harrison eyed the spread and reached into his backpack. He pulled out his lunchbox full of healthy snacks. The woman sat very still, just staring at us as we helped ourselves to the food. I thought her eyes seemed to glint scarlet and her teeth seemed too sharp. It was too dark to tell for certain.
“Can I please use the toilet,” I said in a tiny voice and the woman’s head moved towards me.
“Of course, it’s just through that door over there,” she said, nodding to the side. “Wash your hands in the kitchen sink though so you don’t interrupt Carla. She’s busy casting her spells and you don’t want to face her wrath now, son.”
I just giggled, thinking it was some kind of weird grown up joke. I walked over to where the woman had nodded, opening up the door. I found myself in a shadowy corridor, with rooms on either side. I heard the door shut behind me. I was instantly uneasy. The corridor was far too long. From the outside the caravan looked about two rooms big. This didn’t make sense.
The stink of wet dirt and rain water filled my nose as I stood in the darkness. I could see ahead of me one of the doors was slightly open, revealing the bathroom. The bathtub was overflowing with black water coated in green moss and floating clumps of mud and sticks. A woman was lying in the muck, her face pulled into a snarl, her heaving breasts slick with soil.
There was movement from the room next to me. Feeling like I was in a dream, I slowly turned my head to look. There was a pile of blankets in the middle of the floor. Something was moving beneath the fabric. In my panic-stricken mind I thought for a moment it was some kind of formless monster shaping and reshaping before my eyes.
Then I heard a voice whisper; “oh my god.”
Horrified eyes stared out at me from under the blankets. Another larger person was on top of them.
“Ssh,” the larger shape said to the person beneath them in a soothing way and then pressed their mouths together.
I turned and bolted.
I crashed into the main room, finding it empty. I felt tears pouring down my cheeks, my breath heavy with fright.
“Ella, Junior!” I sobbed, putting my thumb in my mouth as I looked around. I ran down the front corridor.
“What do you think you’re doing?” an angry male voice hissed and I jumped, thinking it was towards me. Then I realized it was coming from the closed door to my side.
“They’re children, Beryl! Have you no pride? How’d you even get a hold of them anyway?”
“I dunno,” I heard the woman say in a sheepish voice. “I just bribed some street urchin to bring me a bunch of kids over.”
“Well send them home,” the man’s voice snapped.
“You already scared them off,” she shot back. I looked beyond the screen door and saw the rest of the group gathered among the reeds. I crashed out of the caravan towards them. Ella went and scooped me up in a hug
“What a bunch of freaks!” she said angrily. “You okay Kit?”
I expected Junior to start teasing me for crying but he was silent. I looked around the group’s frightened faces. Abbey was nowhere to be seen.
“Let’s go,” said Harrison. Ella put me back on my feet. I was suddenly embarrassed that I’d run and cried to my big sister and sniffled as I picked up my bike.
Junior, Ella and Harrison wheeled off as fast as they could into the wetlands. I took one last look behind me. I saw in the distance, Abbey was peddling off down the industrial road, not looking back.
I remember they stopped inviting me to hang out soon after that. Ella was the main instigator of my shunning. She wasn’t mean, she was just a teenager who didn't want to hang out with her kid brother. She’d spend all her time with Harrison. Nonno and Junior lost all respect for Ella as soon as they found out she had a boyfriend. Nonna however, loved Harrison.
“He’s such an impressive young man,” Nonna would gush on the phone to her friends. “He’s gonna be in the Olympics! Such a good character! Doesn’t drink or smoke, like other boys his age. You don’t see temperance like that nowadays!”
Without Harrison and Ella, Junior became completely friendless. Nonno had really gotten into his head. Everyone at school was put off by his sexism which was so over the top it was almost funny.
I’d just turned eighteen with my last year of school ahead of me. I'd heard Nonno complaining that his night shift worker wanted to swap to mornings and afternoons. So one night I knocked on his bedroom door, peering in. Nonno was sorting and filing paperwork.
“Excuse me sir?” I said in a tiny voice. From across the corridor, I saw Junior’s bedroom door open and his dark malicious eyes peer out at us. Nonno’s head snapped up, turning on me.
“What?” he snarled. “What’s all this bloody noise?”
“I’m sorry,” I said at once. “I just heard the night shift job was open at the shop and I could do it. I could work at the shop for you?”
Nonno shot me that disdainful look he was so good at. Then he flapped his hand, turning back to his papers.
“Whatever,” he said pushing his glasses up his nose. “Waste a time, you’d be no good, too much of a cry-baby but I put you on.”
Junior snickered.
“Thank you, sir,” I said and quickly left. I decided to read my books for the upcoming year’s English class. I went to the balcony with a book light to read in the dark. I heard movement behind me and the door lock.
“You’re twenty years old Junior this is kids’ stuff,” I said to my giggling brother.
“If you say please sir, I’ll let you in,” he replied.
“Please sir, let me in,” I said and he unlocked the door. As I was about to step in, he shoved me over. I banged into the chair, cutting my knee open.
“Oh please sir, can I work at your shop?” Junior said in the doorway. “I swear you’re queer, Kit, I would never bend over backwards to please Nonno. Do you bend over to please guys in another way?”
As usual I had no reply as he went back inside, locking the door behind him. I sat up, staring at my bloody knee. I waited until it began to coagulate and then picked it so the blood ran free again. I repeated the process over and over, feeling like I was in a trance.
I heard the shop door’s bell ring as it opened. My bare arms were prickling with goose bumps and I looked at my phone. It was past three in the morning. I had been picking the cut for hours and my knee ached, my finger crusted over with blood. It was dripping through the slats of wood to the ground below. My room was in the attic, so I went to stand on the balcony railing to hoist myself up. I became aware of a presence beneath me.
A pair of big yellow eyes was staring up at me from the darkness. I felt my heart in my throat, my skin prickling. It must have been a fox. I was up against Ella’s bedroom window. I could see through the crack of the curtains, Nonna and Ella sitting on the bed. My sister was in tears.
“He hates me so much,” she said.
“He’s an old-fashioned man,” Nonna replied.
“Everything was better before mum died,” said Ella. “Everyone says she was the kindest person they’d ever met. “
“Too kind,” replied Nonna. “She would sleep with anyone who asked, cause she felt sorry for them. Then she said oh no don’t bother driving me to the hospital I can get my own way there and crashed into a telephone pole when the labor pain hit.”
Ella snivelled. My own eyes stung. I’d heard the story before. Sometimes I wondered if it was the reason why my grandparents didn’t like me. Did they blame me for it? For my mother dying?
“How do you put up with Nonno?” asked Ella.
“Marriage is all about patience,” said Nonna. I heard a slurping sound from beneath the balcony. Looking down, I saw a dark shape licking the ground. It looked far too big to be an animal. I clambered up to my bedroom window.
Finally clumping to the floor, I slammed my window shut behind me. When I got into bed, I hid under the covers. I drifted off to sleep, despite the gnawing fear of what I might have seen outside.
*
When it was time for my first shift, I walked into the store and the girl at the front counter looked up. Her name badge read “Bea.”
“Well come on in,” she said.
She opened up the STAFF ONLY door, letting me inside. To the left side was the stairs to our house and in front of us was the side door. To the right side was the area behind the counter. A screen of plexiglass separated us from the public with a rectangular slot for money at the bottom that you could just fit your wrist through. Bea quickly went over where everything. Then she glanced at the freezer beneath the counter full of silver bags.
“You’ve lived above this place all your life I don’t have to explain to you the rules, do I?”
I muttered out a ‘no.’
“Great,” she said, a note of sarcasm in her voice. “Well tonight’s just a trial run, if ya Pop don’t feel like you’re a good fit, he won’t keep you on.”
She grabbed her bag and chucked me the keys as she left, calling over her shoulder; “best of luck mate.”
I settled in for my shift. I picked up a spray bottle next to the cash register, giving it a sniff. The stench of garlic filled my nose. I put it back down again. Above the freezer was a red button that read DURESS.
For the first hours, I had no customers. About ten minutes to three, a big fat truck driver lumbered in. I watched as he grabbed his purchases. When he caught sight of me, he sighed, rubbing at his beard.
“It’s wrong,” he said, “Bloody wrong to put young kids in here. They oughta put old blokes like me in these joints. No-one wants a bite of this grizzled old bastard, I’m humble enough to admit it.”
I silently scanned his items and he reached for his wallet to pay.
“You look after yehself,” he said before he left. “Best of luck ter ya.”
I watched as the clock slowly ticked over to three. Right on cue, a woman entered. She was short and rotund, wearing sunglasses. I felt a strange shift of nostalgia go through me, but it wasn’t a pleasant feeling. It was like seeing an old film that had given you nightmares as a kid.
“I’d like all the AB negs you have,” she said with her hand over her mouth. I bent down to the freezer and got every silver bag that had AB- stamped on them. I scanned them all and slid them one by one through the slot.
She took out her purse, taking out a banknote and just carrying it in her palm down in front of the slot. Obviously, she wanted me to reach over and take it out of her hand. Her nails looked like talons, black and razor sharp. I pointed for her to put down the money. Her closed lipped smile didn’t leave for a second. Slowly, she lowered the note into the slot. I quickly took it, putting it into the cash register and dumping a few dollars of change back at her. She grasped at it with her long nails, scraping against the metal.
“You’re doing well, son,” she said as she left.
I didn’t get anyone for a while after that. I was just scrolling through my phone when the door smashed open. A woman raced inside.
“Please,” she said. “I’ve totalled my car, you need to come out and help me.”
She was wearing cat-eye sunglasses and was talking in a strange way out of the corner of her mouth. I felt an itch in the back of my head like an ant was chewing away there.
“I can call roadside assistance from here,” I said.
“For god’s sake, this is an emergency!” she hissed. I looked out of the window and couldn’t saw a wrecked car in sight.
“I’m calling help now,” I said starting to tap in a number. Then I jumped again. The woman had pushed over a chip display in a fury. She stamped on the packets, crumbs flying everywhere.
“Well?” she snarled. “Gonna come clean it up?”
I said nothing. She was quiet for a few seconds, her chest heaving. Then she pounced at the counter, pounding against the plexiglass until her palms split. I grabbed the spray bottle and she scuttled away like a cockroach from the store.
I stared at the mess she’d left behind, blood smeared on the plexiglass, chips on the floor. Switching off the Welcome sign I moved for the door. I was coated in cold sweat and my breathing was harsh as I grabbed the mop and bucket.
It seemed like the second I was out in the open there was a knock on the window. It was a silver-haired man dressed in a black suit and wraparound sunglasses.
“Don’t mind if I just pop in for a sec, do ya?” he called out. “Just gotta grab a few bits and bobs.”
I ignored him as I began to sweep up the chip crumbs.
“The missus can’t leave the house you see, I just wanted to get her some Panadol for her pain,” the man went on. “C’mon don’t be so heartless!”
I moved to start scrubbing down the plexiglass. When I didn’t acknowledge him, he began to hum a familiar tune, swaying from side to side. He broke into a waltz with himself, dancing away into the shadowy street. He was humming Once Upon A Dream as he danced in endless circles under the electric glow of the street lights.
When I was done I walked as fast as I could back to the door and behind the counter. I checked about half a dozen times that the door was locked before I switched on the Welcome sign. The man in the suit didn’t enter. There was only the darkness of the night outside the window.
I felt close to tears. I couldn’t believe I had done this to myself, all to impress my bastard grandfather. I was going to end up dead for that old asshole.
“Hello pretty boy,” I heard a voice say at the counter and my heart lurched. I hadn’t heard anyone come in. As I looked up, I stared into a pair of unblinking yellow eyes. At once, I felt a pull in my chest.
“What’s your name?” said the man behind the plexiglass. He wasn’t like the others. He didn’t wear sunglasses and he bared his mouth full of dripping fangs shamelessly.
“Kit,” I answered at once.
“Kitten?” he said with a grin.
“No…” I replied. “Kit.”
“I’m gonna call you kitten,” he said. “Where’re your parents?”
“Mum’s dead,” I said without thinking. “I don’t have a dad.”
I was transfixed by his yellow eyes. I would do anything he’d ask.
“Don’t worry, kitten, I’ll be your Daddy,” he said, grinning wider. I cringed away at the lust dripping from his voice. The magnetic hold wavered for a few moments, nearly failing. I tried to break eye contact, but I couldn’t.
“Hey, this is about being gay or straight,” he said easily. “You wouldn’t say the rabbit is gay for the fox would you? This is just animal business. Now how about you let me in?”
My hand rose and I felt myself move towards the door.
“That’s it,” he whispered. Tears dribbled down my cheeks as my fingers curled around the handle.
The front door smacked open and the man looked away. The spell was broken and I breathed out hard, feeling like I’d crashed through the surface of the sea. Looking over the counter I could see it was the woman in cat-eye sunglasses from before.
The man sighed with annoyance as the woman slunk up beside him.
“I need one of the AB neg,” she said and I gave my head a weak shake, managing to croak out; “none left.”
“Who keeps taking the good stuff?” she said, throwing her hands up.
“Beryl’s always here 3 on the dot, musta been her,” said the yellow-eyed man as the door slammed open again. The man in the suit and wraparound sunglasses was waltzing inside.
“Evening Len, Carla,” the suited man said as he danced towards us.
“Past fuckin’ evening now David,” said Len. He snapped his fingers to get my attention.
“Gimme half a dozen of them O pos’s,” he said and turned to Carla. “Whaddya want love?”
“AB pos, four of em,” she said.
“I’d like the AB neg, please and thank you,” said David. Carla shook her head at him and he glowered.
“Every night Beryl takes it all, the disgusting glutton,” David said under his breath. “Ah well, I’ll have whatever dear Carla’s having.”
I bent down to gather up their purchases from the freezer. As I put the bags through the slot, their black claws grasped at them. All three of them were swarming the counter, with their sharp teeth and wet mouths. Fresh tears slid down my face.
“Aww it’s okay kitten, Daddy’ll look after you,” crooned Len with a smirk.
“You oughta be ashamed,” David said to Len, shaking his head. “This isn’t how it was done in my day, terrorising teenagers just trying to do their job. I swear we’ve lost all our respect and decency.”
“Fuck off,” Len snapped. “I saw ya banging on this here window not half an hour ago, ya were tryna get at ‘im too.”
David’s mouth thinned as I reached for the scanner with a trembling hand.
“I liked Abbey better,” said Carla as she and David put their money down. “She was feisty. This kid’s a sook.”
“Too right,” said Len, as he put his cash on the counter as well. “Keep the change, kitten.”
They all sauntered out of the store again. The memory of a little girl riding away down Silver Road flashed in my mind.
I rested my head on my arms, trying to control my breathing. It was an hour til dawn. I could make it. I had to. I got out my phone again, deciding to play a few videos to settle my badly shaken nerves. I saw I’d gotten a text from Ella.
How you doing Kit? Call if you want.
I stared at the words. I used to always run to Ella for comfort. She was only a few years older but she’d felt like a mother. I didn’t want to admit it, but it had really stung when she decided she was too cool to hang out with me anymore. I slowly typed in her number one digit by one. I listened to it ring, waiting for her to pick up. It rang twice, three times.
“Hi Ella speaking,” she said, the sound bouncing around the silence of the store. “I can’t take your call, please leave a message, thank you.”
I felt emptiness right in the middle of my chest.
“You’re welcome,” I said quietly back to her recorded voice.
“Oh, am I now?” said someone from over in the doorway. My blood ran cold as I looked up. Len was leaning against the glass with a big grin on his face. He strode forward. For a moment, I was frozen and then I saw him raise his boot and kick the door down. He was behind the counter.
I tried to scream as I reached for the panic button. He grabbed my wrist and I went for the spray bottle with the other hand. He grabbed me by the hair and swung me onto the ground. I was sobbing as I tried to crawl for the door. He grabbed my ankles pulling me back down across the floor and around to face him. Then his whole full weight was on me, pinning me to the ground.
“Don’t cry kitten,” he said into my ear. “I can make it good for you.”
A urine stench filled the air. I had wet myself, the hot dampness sliding down my legs.
“Aw pretty kitten piss his pants?” Len laughed as my body shook with sobs.
His lips were at my neck, licking and mouthing the skin, dousing it with saliva. His teeth scraped just slightly at the flesh and he moaned as my blood ran free.
“See it doesn’t hurt so bad does it?” Len said, all butter-soft as he used his grubby fingers to brush the tears away. “Why’re ya still cryin’ huh?”
I just whimpered.
“Now you went and made me feel bad so I ain’t gonna suck you dry and leave ya for dead,” he said. “I’m gonna turn ya. How ‘bout that? You wanna live forever?”
He was opening up his shirt, revealing his chest. Using a black claw, he cut open the flesh right underneath his nipple, dark blood oozing out. His hand slid through my hair, gripping the back of my head and pushing my face into the open wound. I pressed my lips together, trying to turn my head away but his grip on my face was tight. The overwhelming stench of metallic blood and unwashed skin filled my head. I tried to breathe through my nose, but I was suffocating.
There was a bang of the front door and frantic footsteps.
“Jesus Christ Len, fuck off!” screamed Bea as she burst in behind the counter. She started spraying with her bottle, a fine mist of garlic-smelling water settling down over us. The man wrenched away.
“Get out, get out you piece of shit!” Bea threw the bottle at him and then the mop and then the bucket. He swore, covering his head as he ran out the door, racing away into the dawn. Bea was breathing heavily, eyes wild as she stared after him. Then she looked down at me still shaking on the floor.
“Thank god he decided to do that just when my shift was about to start,” she said to me, giving me a hand to help me to my feet.
I felt very small, like a little boy who’d woken up from a nightmare. Waves of humiliation were crashing over me. I couldn’t stop sobbing and I was soaked in my own piss and tears and snot.
Bea noticed the wet patch at the front of my pants and the blood trickling down my neck.
“Did you drink his blood?” she asked and I shook my head. “Then don’t fret. Only a blood exchange can turn you. But he’s got a taste for ya now, so just be extra careful, alright?”
I nodded.
“Well, we’re not gonna keep you on,” she said. “Ya didn’t do too well, Kit.”
I nodded again, hugging myself and rocking from side to side.
“Why do you stay here?” I asked and a sheepish look crossed her face.
“Greed’s always been my vice,” she replied with a shrug. “Now off with ya Kit. Get some sleep.”
I staggered numbly for the stairs to my house. I remembered the little girl riding down Silver Road. Half way up the steps, I paused and turned.
“Abbey?” I called after her. Through the doorway and behind the plexiglass, her shoulders went stiff. Then she went over and shut the door.
I walked into the kitchen and just took a seat at the table, staring at a point in the wall. As the morning wore on my family trickled in one by one. I heard my Nonno’s voice boom from the store beneath us but I couldn’t make out the words.
Suddenly we all froze as the downstairs door slammed open and Nonno stormed up the stairs. Then he was looming in the doorway.
“I knew you’d be useless,” said Nonno, jabbing a finger at me. “I don’t know why the hell I even bothered putting you on. Why you go waste my time for, huh?”
“Poor widdle piss pants,” Junior said and Ella bit back a grin. I felt fresh tears spring to my eyes. Even Ella. Even Ella.
I got to my feet and ran from the kitchen.
“What a bloody girl,” Nonno said in contempt after me.
I moved silently into my room, taking my backpack and filling it up. No-one said a word to me as I ran down the stairs, exiting through the side door. The air felt cold on my skin, the sun weak and the sky grey.
In a daze I went under the shadow of the overpass. I was in the wetlands. My feet crunched over the trail, insects buzzing in the dark still water, the dew-slick reeds gently waving in the morning breeze. There wasn’t a single thought in my mind. All there was, was the endless drive to just walk and walk and walk.
I found the caravan door open and I slid inside. It was just the same, dark with the smell of mould in the air. The door where I’d heard the angry male’s voice was slightly open. Inside I could see it was a lounge room with David at the piano, singing.
I faintly recognized the tune. As Time Goes By. I went through the door to the long corridor, seeing the room with the blankets on the floor. I slowly lowered myself down and curled up into the bunch of warm fabric. I sighed, slow and happy, consumed with waves of blissful relief.
It felt so good to finally relax. I wouldn’t have to work myself to exhaustion anymore trying to impress people who would always hate me no matter what I did.
Looking through a gap in the blankets, I saw familiar yellow staring eyes. I watched as he put his finger between his teeth, biting down. Then he cupped his hand under my chin and slid the finger into my mouth. A dusty old disgusting liquid filled my mouth. His blood ran down my throat.
Stroking my hair, he got up to leave.
Nights bled into days. When I saw the sun through the curtains, my eyes watered and my skin prickled painfully until I pulled the sheets over me. One day I woke to a throbbing hot ache in my jaw. I slicked my tongue over my teeth and felt them wobble. Reaching into my mouth, I prodded at my front tooth. It was nearly completely loose. Taking it between my fingertips I pulled it out, slick with blood. The fleshy socket left behind burned with a pain that shot through the bones in my face. I felt around with my finger and winced. I’d snicked myself on something growing in the inflamed socket. The tip of a razor-sharp fang. It didn’t take look for the floor to be scattered with teeth.
“Poor thing,” Len’s voice said above me. “Hurts don’t it?”
I tried to speak and felt warm blood gush down my lips. Len’s breath hitched.
“Holy shit,” he said. “Yer mouth’s full of it, kitten.”
Like a hungry animal he was on the ground, taking my head in his hands. I flinched when his thin narrow mouth pressed down over mine.
I quickly realized it wasn’t a kiss. The wet muscle of his tongue was worming around the fleshy sockets, lapping up as much blood as possible. The point of one of my fangs had nicked Len’s tongue and his blood was filling me up. It was foul and delicious, revolting and wonderful. My mind was a white endless fog as I swallowed it greedily down. His full weight pushed me into the ground and I choked on the stench of dirt, blood and sweat as we drank each other’s bloody saliva.
There was another presence in the room. I could smell mud and rainwater. My eyes slowly dragged over to the figure in the doorway behind Len’s shoulder. It was a small, shaking boy with wide horrified eyes, staring into mine.
“Oh my god,” I whispered, feeling the blood drip from my chin.
“Ssh,” said Len soothingly before pressing our mouths together again.
submitted by madoto-78 to Odd_directions [link] [comments]


2020.08.17 22:18 Greenbread01 Blood and Rain (One-Shot)

Clementine slid down the slippery tiling of the roof, the flaps of her denim jacket flowing freely in the heavy breeze. A packed bag rested on her back, the stolen supplies inside rattling with every movement. Deafening thunder snapped across the sky as the brunette jumped to another building, clutching the gutter with one hand and pulling herself up. The yells and screams of fury motivated each and every action that her sore and aching body took.
The teenager dived behind a nearby chimney as a bullet whizzed past her head. She swore as a tile gave way, falling to the ground with a large crash. It was a long drop and for once Clementine was glad AJ wasn't with her. She loved the kid with all her heart but right now he would be a liability.
"Give us our shit back and maybe, just maybe, we'll let you go scot-free." A man called. He had a deep gravelly voice that sounded untrustworthy. She stayed silent and started planning her next move. Amber eyes discovered a lonely balcony just below her.
The issue? She was going to have to pull some serious acrobatics to get to it. Exhaling, Clementine steeled herself. Thunder crashed as the teenager found herself bolting across the roof, avoiding the hail of gunfire that came her way. She slid and grabbed the edge of the roof, swinging into the balcony and rolling. Clementine slammed her shoulder on the door and it gave way instantly. She barrelled into the dusty and abandoned room.
A heavily degraded walker hung from the ceiling fan, its skinny limbs swinging wildly, desperate. The rope from the noose cut grimly into its grisly flesh. Her gaze softened. The poor guy musta given up near the start. Swallowing the lump that formed at the back of her throat, Clementine moved on. She couldn't stick around for long. The guys she stole from knew the city way better than her. They were probably already inside.
She pushed the door open and entered into a long and winding hallway. The deep blue carpet wasn't very easy on the eyes and doors littered the walls, ordered neatly. She must be in a hotel of some sort. Much to her chagrin, flashlights danced at the end of the corridor. Clementine groaned irritably as the men charged around the corner, thundering towards her. Looking behind her revealed nothing but a dirtied window.
Unsheathing her knife, Clementine stalked towards the two charging men. She ducked the first punch and launched the point of her blade into his jaw. A pair of thick meaty arms wrapped around her midsection. Before she knew it, she was lifted off the ground and slammed into a wall. Her knife stabbed backwards, slicing up the man's shoulder. He grabbed the back of her head and forced the body part into the wall. She grunted as pain exploded behind her now broken nose.
Her leg shot outwards, catching the man in the knee. His weight bucked and they both scrambled to the floor. Clementine clambered to her fallen knife but something grabbed her ankle. She was dragged roughly backwards and the man climbed on top of her, his hands clutching around her neck. He squeezed and her breathing became restricted. She gasped and weakly hit at his arms. It didn't work and he shook her harder, making the back of her head hit the floor.
The corners of her vision were going dark and Clementine knew she didn't have much time left. She dashed her hands along the floor, desperately trying to find something. Her hands eventually located something. An old rusty pipe. She hit the man in the side of the head and he let go, sprawling across the ground.
The teenager struggled to her feet and staggered backwards, stopping in front of the window. She took deep and heavy breaths. That was close. Her eyes widened as the man picked up her knife and began charging at her. Unable to move, she shot her hand out in a blind panic. She grabbed his wrist, stopping the knife from stabbing her in the gut. However, that didn't stop their momentum and her back crashed through the glass of the window.
They both fell. Wind warped past her ears, distorting both hers and the man's screams of terror. Suddenly, her back smacked against the ground with a loud bang. She gasped and arched her spine, feeling a stabbing pain in her thigh. Clementine looked down and bit her lower lip, fighting back tears. A piece of blood-stained rebar had torn through the muscle and flesh of her leg.
She glanced to her right, the man was dead. His neck was snapped and a large pool of blood was filling itself around his head. It was a gruesome sight. Clementine propped herself up onto her elbow and looked at the rebar. She wiggled her leg upwards and cried as it scraped her innards. She soon stopped, the pain was too much.
The girl fell back against the wet ground of the alley, defeated. She was dead.
No.
Not yet. She couldn't give up, not when AJ still needed her. She inhaled and braced herself to repeat the painful process once again. Her eyes clenched shut as she let out a bloodcurdling scream, the rebar remained still as she slowly and painfully lifted her leg off it. Eventually, the leg escaped the metal's grasp and she rolled onto her side in relief. The hard part was over. She stared at the exit to the alley.
Maybe not, she still needed to escape the rest of them.
Clementine pushed herself onto shaky legs, using the brick wall for support. Slowly, she limped, leaving her knife behind. She needed to move and didn't have enough time to grab it. The rest of the raiders would find her soon enough. She yelped as the wound throbbed, desperate to hurt her.
She leered at it, watching as the thick clots of blood dribbled feebly down her pant leg and onto the ground. Clementine swore. She was going to lead a trail to where she and AJ were hiding. They were going to have to make a quick escape with the car. The city wasn't safe. She still didn't know why they chose to stay. Reverse psychology? No-one would be in the city if they thought everyone would be in the city right?
Holding the hole in her leg, attempting to slow the bleeding and only succeeding in staining her hands red, Clementine mustered up the courage to keep moving.
Not for the first time that night, Clementine regretted stealing from the raiders. It had not gone as planned at all.
She looked back at her leg and muttered to herself, "At least I didn't lose it. That would suck."
submitted by Greenbread01 to TWDGFanFic [link] [comments]


2020.08.06 05:49 FunPeach0 Part 5: Amazing In Depth Essay About Sopranos Symbolism and Subtext (credit: FlyOnMelfisWall source: thechaselounge.net)

Tony Defies His Father’s Life Lessons

Season 6, part 2, depicted Tony as a heavy gambler, one who risked far more money more often than had ever been suggested before. While he always profited significantly from bookmaking and loansharking enterprises (his own and those of his crew), his personal wagering was limited and low-key in the first five and a half seasons, consisting mostly of casual card games or the odd day at a casino or racetrack. He certainly had never been depicted as the kind of man who gambled enough to endanger his liquidity or to necessitate six-figure loans just to stay even with his bookies, which describes the state of affairs in the episode Chasing It.
His gambling problem becomes so significant in that episode that it’s even addressed in therapy. Tony admits he’s been sending “good money after bad” but quickly defends the practice. “If you couldn’t lose, what’s the fuckin’ point, huh? See, you need the risk,” he tells Melfi. She asks, “What are you chasing? Money or a high from winning?” His shake of the head indicates that he doesn’t really know the answer to her question.
Many viewers couldn’t provide an answer either and felt this sudden gambling crisis reflected a writing failure, an attempt to manufacture drama by imposing unnatural or contradictory behavior on a well-established character. I felt a bit that way myself until I began to consider the gambling in light of Tony’s contemporaneous, burgeoning, and subconscious anger towards his father at that point in the series. In that context, the gambling began to make perfect sense, and, once again, it all goes back to the night of the incident involving the cleaver.
That was the night when Johnny emphatically imparted to Tony the lessons that gamblers are scum and that gamblers who borrow money and fail to make timely repayment are even bigger scum. If, in the last half of season 6, Tony’s subconscious was stuck on the cleaver incident as the true genesis for his life trajectory and was subtly pushing him to rebel against his father 35 years after-the-fact, then borrowing huge sums of money, gambling it all away, and shirking the responsibility to repay the loans would be a natural, safe course for that rebellion to take. Making Hesh the victim of his irresponsible borrowing would be a bonus, since Hesh’s age and relationship to Johnny and to Tony himself make him another natural father figure.
Of course this is exactly what happens in Chasing It. Having already borrowed 200K from Hesh in the prior episode, Tony visits his home one night. In a near-replay of his gift to Beansie, he brings Hesh a Cleaver hat while expressly denouncing the movie itself as unfit for viewing, a blatant self-contradiction reconciled only in that it signals Tony’s ongoing subconscious preoccupation with the movie’s cleaver logo and themes of violent retribution against a father figure. In any case, Tony shares gossip about Phil’s “boss” party from which he’s just returned and offers an almost stunning sentiment when Hesh questions why he left the party and the company of his crew so early. “I look at my key guys . . . what’s number one on their agenda, you know? They’re all fuckin’ murderers for Christ’s sakes,” Tony jokes, only you get the feeling he’s more serious than not. “What I’m tryin’ to say is, it’s nice bein’ here.” “Here” of course meant in the company of a guy who he fancies is able to put friendship above business, who makes his living under the auspices and protection of the mob but without directly participating in its violent aspects.
The warm fuzzy feelings disappear pretty quickly, however, when Hesh reminds Tony of the outstanding loan. Even though Hesh makes clear he is only wondering about repayment of the principal and is not looking for a “vig”,” Tony unreasonably seizes on this debt reminder as grounds for judging Hesh to be a stereotypical, money-grubbing Jew. He insists on paying Hesh a vig anyway and rubs two quarters together in derision when Hesh stops by the pork store the following week. Suddenly Tony is offended at the notion of folks collecting debts and profiting from gambling loans, something he’s unapologetically done himself directly or indirectly all his adult life. Then again, his subconscious is in a different place than it’s ever been before, fixated on the pivotal events and people in his past that contributed to him becoming what he is instead of what he’d like to have been.
The always-prescient Hesh ominously notes that this is not the usual Tony. “He’s all worked up, or something. I don’t like the way he talks. Hostile remarks. It’s not like him. Makes me worry.”
A secondary thread in this episode deals with Vito Jr. experiencing behavioral and social problems in the wake of Vito’s death. He dresses full tilt “gothic” with black lipstick, overturns headstones for fun, kills a neighbor’s cat, bullies a handicapped girl at school, and craps in the gym shower as revenge on hateful peers who tease him because his father was gay and notoriously died with a pool cue rammed up his butt.
Marie Spatafore asks Tony for $100K to move far away where Vito Jr. can start with a clean slate. Reluctant to give her that kind of money, Tony tries first to make Phil, as Marie’s cousin and Vito’s executioner, assume financial and quasi-paternal responsibility, with predictably bad results. Underscoring yet again the fatheson/surrogate theme of season 6, part 2, Tony tells Marie, “It’s not easy to substitute for a dad. I know. But maybe I can fill in here.”
Tony does talk to Vito Jr., employing a tact reminiscent of his intervention with AJ in Johnny Cakes and polar opposite of the one his father undertook with him after Satriale’s. He tries to plant or reinforce in Little Vito’s own mind a fundamentally good self-image by praising that he’s always been a “good kid.” Vito rejects Tony’s presumptuousness, noting that Tony is such a stranger to their family that he often mistakenly calls him “Carlos, Jr.” instead of “Vito Jr.” Still Tony tries to accentuate the positive. “Look, all I know is I couldn’t shut your dad up about what a good kid you were,” he scolds. “We were friends you know.” “But buddies?” Vito asks sarcastically. After excusing the zinger, Tony offers some genuine compassion for what it’s like to lose a father you loved and yet who caused you shame or disappointment at the same time. “I’m sure you miss him . . . a lot . . . whatever he was.”
Obviously this encounter is included in the story for what it says about Tony, not for what it says about Vito Jr., an inconsequential character in the overall scheme of the show. Tony’s counsel reveals his own latent conflicts, that despite what Johnny Boy was, and what Junior was, they were his father and uncle, the most important men in his life, the men who were around him throughout his formative years and who provided what measure of paternal love he knew. Not all of it was bad. Very much like what Tony recounts regarding Christopher’s childhood -- holding him as an infant and riding him around on his butcher bike -- there were endearing memories and experiences, enough that he could still love these men despite all the harm they caused him.
Little Vito is correct that Tony has no idea whether he (Vito) is an intrinsically “good kid”, and we have no idea whether Vito Sr. ever said or harped on that fact to Tony (probably not). But it doesn’t really matter whether either is true. Tony says these things because he intuitively recognizes how damaging it was to his own psyche and self image as a kid to hear his father euphemistically tell him after the cleaver incident that he innately possessed the sadistic, evil, or predatory nature to do what he witnessed in Satriale’s. He knows at a core, unconscious level that living up to his father’s concept of him was more important than living up to his fledgling concept of himself, a self-concept which, stripped of his father’s corruption, is revealed in all its relative innocence and idealism in Join the Club. That Tony is a mild-mannered salesman, loves his wife and kids so much that he sabotages his one chance at an illicit affair with an attractive woman, is naturally uncomfortable with minor credit card fraud, and is positively stunned at a level of violence in which another person merely slaps his face. So his effort to make Vito Jr. think of himself as a “good kid” and to internalize his father’s ostensible view of him as the same is Tony’s effort to help Vito Jr. avert the self-doubt and sense of innate moral inferiority that paved his own path to a life of crime.
Though I don’t think Chasing It asks us to make this juxtaposition, I can’t help but recall another, early episode featuring Hesh, Denial, Anger, Acceptance. There the Hasidic motel owner tells Tony he is a “golem”, a “monster, Frankenstien”, prompting Melfi’s question near the end of the episode, “Do you feel like Frankenstein . . . a thing, lacking humanity, lacking human feelings?” We don’t hear Tony’s answer in the therapy room, but it’s provided years later in his Test Dream when Tony the “mobster” (“monster” minus an “n” plus a “b”) runs from a torch-bearing, lederhosen-clad mob. Yes, he feels like Frankenstein, a monster, albeit one created by other people, against whom we can presume he bears a serious grudge.

Chris’ Displaced, Murderous Rage as a Precursor to Tony’s

In Walk Like a Man, Chris finds himself “ostrafied” by his mob cohorts because, in his effort to stay sober, he spends very little time with them at the Bing. When he does see them, he is ridiculed for drinking non alcoholic beverages and witnesses his once-favored status and earning opportunities in Tony’s crew being usurped by Bobby Bacala. Chris seeks Tony’s understanding for the fact that he inherited alcoholism from his mother, making sobriety especially difficult for him to maintain. But Tony doesn’t buy this “excuse”.
Tony: I know a crutch when I see it.
Chris: So my dad? You obviously musta knew he had a crutch.
Tony: What the fuck are you talkin’ about?
Chris: Com’e on, Tone, huh? Between the coke, the vodka, whatever the fuck else he was squirtin’ up his arm. Let’s be honest about the great Dickie Moltisanti, my dad, your hero. He wasn’t much more than a fuckin’ junky.
Tony is speechless. He doesn’t know what to think or say in the face of a son calmly debunking a lifetime of false paternal myth and hero worship and replacing it with naked, unvarnished, and unflattering truth. He is undoubtedly also disturbed to see the pedestal he built under another of his own father figures crash to the ground so suddenly and emphatically.
Elsewhere in the episode, Paulie provokes a squabble with Chris over stolen power tools that ultimately results in Chris beating and throwing Little Paulie out of a second story window and Paulie driving his car like a high-speed plow over the expensive new landscaping at Chris’ home while Kelly watches in terror. Tony forces a truce, which Chris seals with a drink to placate Paulie. This sacrifice and effort to fit in is rewarded when Paulie mocks Christopher’s drunken soliloquy about his daughter and makes her the butt of two cruel jokes in front of the crew. As Chris’ “friends” convulse in laughter, and especially as he absorbs the depths of betrayal written in the broad smiles of his “father figures”, Paulie and Tony, Chris storms out of the Bing and to the home of JT Dolan.
There’s a natural symmetry to him showing up in that moment at the home of the screenwriter who helped him express his covert hatred of Tony Soprano in a movie script. But on this night, the hatred spurting out of him is far more urgent and tangible. He threatens to “bring everybody down” by revealing sensitive secrets, like the truth behind the murders of Ralph and Adriana, and notes the rewards of the Witness Protection Program. He even mentions that Sammy “The Bull” Gravano is “living large” in the program in Arizona, a remark with some portent for the next episode.
JT repeatedly warns that he doesn’t want to hear these things that could get him killed and is unmoved by Chris’ plea for sympathy. “You know my father abandoned me,” Chris cries. “I thought you said he was shot,” JT fires back coldly before trying to shock Chris back to the realities of the life he chose: “Chris, you’re in the Mafia!”
Clearly Chris doesn’t subscribe to the “don’t shoot the messenger” theory. He impulsively draws his gun and blows a hole through JT’s head, but driving the action is the anger accompanying his sense of paternal betrayal and abandonment. It’s a transparently displaced act of rage reminiscent of the beatings Tony administered to Georgie through the years when the motivating anger was actually aimed at others or at himself.

A Reprise of Tony’s Paternal Guilt

Just as Christopher’s paternal hatred was exploding, Tony’s was imploding. And, once again, the explicitly acknowledged guilt Tony feels as a father and the unacknowledged blame he dispenses as a son are part of the same, swift current.
In Walk Like a Man, Tony has decided to quit therapy once and for all following Melfi’s demand that he honestly assess its value to him and whether he is serious about continuing. But before he can share his decision with her, Blanca ends her engagement to AJ, plunging the younger Soprano into a deep, suicidal depression.
When AJ cries that Blanca was “the best thing that ever happened” to him, Tony makes his most concerted effort of the series to boost AJ’s self-esteem and convince him of his intrinsic worth, telling AJ that plenty of girls would love to have a guy like him. AJ tearfully scoffs.
AJ: Yeah, right. Like I’m so special.
Tony: [earnestly] You’re damn right you are. You’re handsome and smart . . . a hard worker. And, let’s be honest, white.
I guess Tony had limited raw material to work with, but he did his best to sell all points.
AJ’s crisis causes a reversal in Tony’s decision to quit therapy, making his position in his next session paradoxical. On one hand he declares that therapy has been one big “jerk off” but allows that he is now “trapped [there] forever”.
The immediately striking aspect of this scene is that Tony is intellectually aware of the reasons for AJ’s depression: painful, personal rejection and the demise of his first, serious romantic relationship. That could happen to any young person in any walk of life with any kind of father or background and produce serious depression. But Tony’s awareness of this fact doesn’t stop him from feeling he is to blame for AJ’s plight.
Tony: Obviously I’m prone to depression . . . a certain bleak attitude about the world. But I know I can handle it. Your kids, though.
[His watery eyes and frangible voice betray the sincerity of his emotions as he continues.]
Tony: It’s like when they’re little and they get sick. You’d give anything in the world to trade places with them so they don’t have to suffer. And then to think you’re the cause of it.
Melfi: How are you the cause of it?
Tony: It’s in his blood, this miserable fuckin’ existence. My rotten fuckin’ putrid genes have infected my kid’s soul! That’s my gift to my son.
A long pause ensues as Melfi absorbs the importance of the moment. These words are almost a verbatim echo of Tony’s emotional outpouring years before in Army of One, the only time he came really close to condemning his gangster way of life and particularly its harmful effects on his son. His verbiage here is even stronger in that he speaks of having “infected [AJ’s] soul”, a metaphor with considerably greater moral and spiritual weight than implied by the innocent, biological conveyance of a defective gene for regulating serotonin uptake.
So, as before, this confession of guilt and sorrow is clearly about more than genes. It’s about more than Tony wanting to save AJ from romantic heartbreak. This is about Tony feeling an inexorable corruption of his own humanity and sense of worth by the influence and value system of his violent father. And it’s about his concomitant guilt for fearing that, as a man like his father, he has done the same thing to AJ.
Just as in Army of One, Melfi’s gentle tone of voice signals how much she’s pulling Tony to make these realizations while his angry tears show how much he’s pushing to resist them.
Melfi: I know this is difficult. But I’m very glad we’re having this discussion.
Tony: Really? Really? ‘Cause I gotta be honest. I think it fuckin’ sucks.
Melfi: What does?
Tony: [yelling] Therapy! This! I hate this fuckin’ shit!
And there, in a nutshell, is the problem. He can’t stand to feel sorrow or indulge the pain of deep introspection, a theme recurrent through the series and explored openly in House Arrest and The Ride.
It’s no coincidence that Walk Like a Man and a number of other episodes from the final nine essentially begin by showing Tony soundly asleep in his bed. It’s also no coincidence that, after waking in Walk Like a Man, he plods downstairs while singing a verse from the Pink Floyd classic “Comfortably Numb”, a song which also features prominently in the following, culminating episode. Remaining numb to his deeper feelings of conscience and humanity is both the secret to Tony’s success as a gangster and the reason why some of his most personal, tactile acts of violence have followed moments of great sorrow (e.g., belt-whipping Zellman, killing Ralph, viciously beating a drugged-out Christopher after the Adriana hit.) Psychological distraction and extreme sensory manipulation are the keys, whether achieved by adrenaline-inducing violence, compulsive sex, compulsive eating, compulsive spending/material acquisition, or compulsive sleeping. The objective in all cases remains to either feel anything but pain or to feel nothing at all.
Walk Like a Man brings these deeply repressed feelings close enough to the surface that Tony glimpses the price of dredging them all the way up. And it’s not a price he’s willing to pay.
He knows that in order to “grow”, to truly progress in Melfi’s office, he has to be willing to essentially condemn an entire lifetime of immoral choices and acts that inflicted immense suffering on other people. He has to be willing to experience the guilt and remorse associated with that process. He has to be willing not only to smash the pedestal he erected under his father and denounce his way of life and his example but to own the fact that he willingly followed in his footsteps as an adult, compromising the potential of his children and especially of his son. In short, he has to do what the monks in his coma dream were suing to make him do: take personal responsibility for his life and actions. No more blaming Livia consciously or Johnny Boy unconsciously. No more blaming Junior or Paulie or Dickie because they were equally poor surrogate fathers. No more “going about in pity for himself” because of his upbringing.
All of this is why the explicit admission never comes, the breakthrough never truly occurs. It’s too hard. It opens him up to too much sadness and regret and sense of waste and failure in his life. As hard as it is at times for him to live with the repression of those feelings, repression is easier than confrontation and all its consequences.
Of course the very fact that Tony has such feelings to repress has always been paramount for me. Though his actions grew increasingly dark over the course of the series, he always betrayed evidence of some conscience, some capacity for love, some capacity for sorrow and moral conflict, without which I can’t imagine that I would ever have been as obsessed with this show as I became. I cared about him and devoted so much passionate energy to trying to understand him only because his vulnerability and shreds of goodness made him, in my judgment, worthy of caring and understanding.
The humanity was often microscopic, but it was there, even in relation to some of the darkest deeds on the show: the way he was haunted briefly after killing Matt Bevalaqua, who he recognized was barely more than a “kid”; his reaction to the way Richie Aprile maimed Beansie; his long resistance to the idea that Pussy was a rat that had to be killed as well the way the murder troubled him well afterward; the way he uniquely (among the crew) was saddened by and took moral issue with what Ralph did to Tracee. We glimpsed his humanity in his red, grief-swollen face and defeated voice in All Due Respect when he instructed Chris where to find and bury the body of Tony B. We even saw it after he coldly ordered Adriana’s execution, both in the angry beating he administered to Chris (classic distraction from sorrow and punishment of Chris for having “created” the whole situation to begin with) and in his lumbering, emotionally oppressed frame and countenance in the closing scene of Long Term Parking.
So by the time of Kennedy and Heidi, even though there was nothing new about Tony killing people for whom he felt some form of affection, there was something entirely new about him killing a loved one without any trace of regret, sadness, or moral conflict. That’s why his seemingly remorseless, defiantly triumphant murder of the young man he thought of as a surrogate son forever changed the way I view Tony Soprano. Or at least I thought it did.
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 6
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2020.07.29 02:17 FudgeSuprme Darker Days - Chapter 6

[You chose to accept Nick's apology.]
You think Nick’s apology is real enough, if he didn’t mean it then he probably won’t have apologised at all.
You: “It’s fine, Nick. Don’t worry about it.”
Nick: “Alright, thanks. I’m gonna go.”
Nick gets up from the table and goes to find the rest of his group. It’s just you and Luke left at the table now.
You: “...Thanks, Luke.”
Luke: “Hey, don’t worry about it.”
It goes a little quite between the two of you.
Luke: “So... Who was your friend.”
You: “......He was..... Um.....”
You trail off, it’s still painful to think about, you definitely couldn’t talk about it. Luke notices that it’s sore spot for you.
Luke: “Hey, hey, you don't have to talk about it. I'm sorry I asked.”
You: “It’s ok. It's not your fault.”
It goes a little quiet again. Luke speaks.
Luke: “Well, I better go find Nick. Make sure he isn't, I dunno, fucking something up.”
You: “Alright.”
Luke gets up and leaves, your now just sitting by yourself. You don't know what to do but you are a bit tired, so you head to your bed. You go to bed and fall asleep. You get woken up by people rushing outside and the sound of an out of control wind turbine. You get up and run outside to the wind turbine, axe in hand. As you get there a loud bang goes off.
Luke: “What the hell was that?”
The lights go out.
Kenny: “Damnit. Transformer musta gone. Gotta check it, I could use a hand.”
Luke: “I’ll go with you.”
Sarita: “I’m going too.”
Kenny: “No, it’s too dangerous. Rest of you, get this thing shut down.”
Kenny and Luke run off in the direction of the transformer.
Carlos: “Does anyone know how to do this?”
You: “Yeah, Matthew showed me once. But I can’t see shit.”
Clem: “I have a lighter.”
You: “Good enough.”
Carlos: “Ok. We’ll watch you back. Nick, scan the tress with me.”
They walk off with and start scanning the trees. Clem lights her lighter. You grab the key, stick it in the button then turn it and push. The wind turbine runs off.
Clem: “Is that it?”
You: “It was designed to be easily used.”
You hear walkers in the trees.
Nick: “Something ain’t right.”
Walkers start making there way towards you.
Carlos: “We don’t have much ammunition.”
Nick: “We gotta get back to the lodge.”
Everyone starts shooting walkers, you don’t have a gun do you just stay on guard in case one gets to close. You see Clem shooting one in the head and notice one close enough by. You swing the axe down into it’s head, it goes down to about it’s mouth. You look over and see Clem shooting at a big group, she isn’t the best shot so she misses a bit and eventually runs out of bullets. You run up and bring the axe right into a walkers face, shots go off as Carlos finishes the rest.
Carlos: “Run. Go!”
One sneaks up behind him and knocks his rifle of his back.
Carlos: “Keep moving, get to the lodge.”
Everyone starts running. You hear a shot going off and look round, you see Clem lying on the ground with a walker coming at her, you also see the rifle just lying there, you could probably get it. You move quickly, swiping one of the walkers legs in half as Clem dives under the table to get a knife. She finishes the walker off while you get the rifle. You start running. The two of you see Nick struggling with a walker, he’s losing.
Clem: “Nick!”
Walter stands near by with his gun, but for some reason he doesn’t save Nick. Nick starts going down, the walker starts eating into his neck, he screams out in pain as you, Clem and Walter run to Carlos and Sarita.
You: “Hey, Carlos. Wanna swap?”
You hand Carlos his rifle and he hands you a silver pistol. You turn to Walter, pure anger burning in you.
You: “The fuck was that, Walter? He needed help.”
Walter: “You don’t understand, Owen. He killed Matthew.”
This takes you by surprise but you don’t show it, you have a bigger issue with Walter.
You: “But he needed your help.”
Before Walter can respond Carlos states shouting.
Carlos: “Clem, get inside!”
Clem runs away as the four of you start shooting walkers. It’s not even a couple of seconds before you hear gunfire that isn’t your group. Walkers start dropping everywhere, as four new people make their way out of the trees.
You: “Who are they?”
No one answers you. A man with a moustache starts talking, you assume he’s in charge.
Mr moustache: “Howdy, folks.”
He come up to Carlos' face.
Mr moustache: “Where’s Rebecca?”
Carlos spits in his face, so the man punches him hard. Sarah, stupidly, runs out of the lodge as this happens, she runs up a hugs Carlos. The man looks at the lodge.
Mr moustache: “Inside.”
They take your weapons and lead you back inside the lodge. One of the new people is rambling on about something uninteresting and unimportant. He turns to talk to his friend when you see Clem spring to the stairs, it’s a wonder no one saw. You’re forced to kneel in a line with your hands ziptied behind your back.
You: “Carlos, who is that?”
Carlos: “Carver.”
Carver has a look around the lodge, probably looking for the rest of your group. When he doesn’t find anything, he pulls Carlos out of the line in front of everyone. He punches Carlos in the gut and he fall on his knees.
Carver: “Listen, I'm only gonna ask you once. Where’s, Rebecca.”
Carlos: “Sarah, look at me. It’s gonna be ok.”
Carver grabs his finger and breaks one of them. He starts calling out for Rebecca.
Carver: “Rebecca? Rebecca, our baby deserves to be raised in a place of safety. I know you’re out there. And Alvin. And Luke. And the girl. This is real simple. You want this over quick. You play nice and show your faces.”
Sarah is crying, like, a lot.
Sarah: “Don’t hurt my dad! Please.”
Carver: “Well, sweetie. That’s entirely up to, Rebecca.”
This doesn’t help the situation. Carver waits for a bit and when nothing happens, he breaks another if Carlos' fingers.
Sarah: “DAD! Just stop! Don’t hurt my dad. Please.”
Carlos: “Fuck you. Shoot him! Somebody just shit hi—”
Carver grabs Carlos by the hair and holds a knife to his throat.
You: “Sarah don’t look.”
Carver: “Say goodbye, Carlos.”
Carlos: Don’t look, sweetie. Don’t look.
Carver holds his knife right on Carlos throat, when suddenly Alvin shouts out from their hiding place.
Alvin: “Bill! We’re up here.”
Carver throws Carlos flat on the ground. Rebecca, Alvin and Clem all make their way downstairs. Rebecca goes up to Carver, he places his hand on her face.
Carver: “You alright?”
Rebecca: “Fuck you, Bill.”
They all get placed back in the lineup. Carlos whispers to Clem.
Carlos: “Clem, can you reach my hands.”
Clem: “I’ll try.”
You: “Don’t bother. They’ll see you and even if you could reach, what would you do.”
Clem: “Yeah, I suppose.”
A gun goes off, the window smashes and one of Carver’s guy falls to the ground with a hole in his head. Carver and the other two all get into cover behind the wooden pillars. Red hair: “I can’t see him.”
Carver: “Watch them.”
Carver makes his way round to Walter, he pulls him up, uses him like a human shield, throws him down then shots him in the head.
You: “Fucking, bastard.”
Carver just ignored you and gets back to his cover.
Carver: “That’s for our man. Now, I didn’t want to do this, but you ain’t leaving me much choice. So here’s what’s gonna happen. I’m gonna march another one of your friends out here and I’m gonna put a bullet in the back of their head. Or you can give up now, your choice.
Another shot goes off. Your pretty sure it’s Kenny.
Carver: “Hey, Alvin.”
Carlos: “Alvin.”
Rebecca: “Bill, no! Tell him to stop. Kenny stop!
Carver walks Alvin over to the window, you can’t heat what their saying though. Carver stops with Alvin at the window.
Rebecca: “Bill no! We’ll do whatever you want.
Alvin: “I love you Bec.”
At this point Clem runs at Carver, but he hears her coming and whacks her with his gun and then knocks down Alvin. He picks her up and uses her as a threat, instead of Alvin.
You: “HEY!”
Carver just waits with his gun to Clem’s head. Kenny come in quietly through the doors. He gets placed in the line up.
Carver: “Where’s Luke? Finally cut and run, uh, why am I not surprised. I warned you, I warned you not to follow him. Now, look where he’s lead you. Alright, round them up, where heading back to camp.”
You all get lead to a truck and force you into the back of it, they take all your stuff as well. You’re still actually pretty tired so you fall asleep without trying before you even start driving. A bump in the road makes jolts you awake, and you find yourself in the middle of an argument.
Kenny: “We’re in a fucking precarious position here. We gotta do something about that.”
Carlos: “Settle down, Kenny. They took everything. We need to keep a level head.”
Rebecca: “He’s right. You don’t know Bill like we do.”
Kenny: “Bill? This whole time it’s carver, carver, carver and now he’s fucking, Bill?”
You can’t be bothered with the whole thing you decide to space out and stare into the middle distance. You come back into reality when the truck rocks again, you see Kenny getting ready for a fight. You think it’s a bad idea but it’s hard to get Kenny to stop sometimes.
[Try get Kenny to stop, or let him do his thing.]
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Yung Bae - Must Be Love Buy/Stream: https://fanlink.to/mustbelove SUBSCRIBE http://bit.ly/YUNGBAEyoutube MERCH http://shop.thefutureoffunk.com TOUR htt... Provided to YouTube by Rhino Atlantic Must Be Love · James Gang Bang ℗ 1973 Atco Records/Elektra Entertainment Group Bass, Percussion: Dale Peters Bass Guita... Alan Jackson performs It Must Be Love Lyrics: First I get cold then hot Think I'm on fire I'm not Oh what a pain I've got it must be love There's nothing I c... Official music video for Roxette - 'It Must Have Been Love' from the movie 'Pretty Woman' (1990) Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube. Check out Armada Music Radio on Spotify: http://bit.ly/ArmadaRadio Download on iTunes: http://bit.ly/MustBeTheLoveIT Grab your copy on Beatport: http://bit.l... You're watching the official music video for 'You Must Love Me' from Madonna's soundtrack album for the motion picture 'Evita' released on Warner Bros. in 19... Christina Grimmie - Must Be Love (Audio) A home for our podcast about knitting, crocheting, spinning, making, festival going, new products and events at the store and so much more! We will be adding... It Must Have Been Love - Roxette (Alyona cover) Recently watched the movie Pretty Woman and was so inspired to record this one! ... (Alyona cover) Recently watched the movie Pretty Woman and was ...