Michael and Jacob – Plywood derby

“Do vampires have feelings? Asking for a friend.” Narrator

Michael’s head began to swim then a wave of nausea struck. He heaved and this was followed by a second. His throat screamed as nothing came up. Michael looked down to notice blood on the ground when his body seized and he fell to his side.

Michael woke up strapped to a piece of plywood. The plywood was canted upward and he was moving backward. Michael could see someone above him. A monstrously tall man with a large backpack under a black trench coat. To the right Michael noticed Jacob strapped to a second piece of plywood. Thick leather straps held him securely as his sneakers dragged over the asphalt.

Michael looked himself over and found a large, bandage wrapped around his waste. A large red stain near his wound and a second near his chest. His boots dragging the ground. Behind him was a mob of zombies. Michael began to get a better sense of his surrounding as he continued to wake. The houses had begun to get bigger as he realized they had left his previous street and were now moving toward the center of the city.

“What is this?” He thought. “Broadway? Richie riches used to live here. Now they are all dead or fled to the North. The monster do not like the cold up there. Leave us poor folk to lie and steal and spend eternity in the City of Monsters. Frick’n backwoods justice from here to Buffalo. If that city still exists…”

Michael’s driver suddenly dropped him with a thud and he complained. He watched as the zombies approached. To the left was a large gate. The tall man was struggling to close. To the right was a small army. They fired and Michael’s ears rang. A row of zombie lay motionless. The tall man strained to pull the heavy gate further till a zombie approached and attempted to surprise him.

“Holy crap,” Jacob said as the tall man grasp the zombie and bit into its rotten flesh. The man didn’t chew but seemed to suck from the zombie victim. He then tossed it away, shook and pulled the gate closed like it was a thin sheet of paper. He turned to Jacob and Michael, his face covered in gore.

“Come on, no! This is not happening,” Michael began. “I understand the zombie apocalypse and all and the shit show my brother and I started by stealing from the Governor. I get that the punishment was life behind the walls of the city for me and my family. All that sucks and now my family is dead but this is not going to happen. I’m done. I am not staying here strapped to a wooden barbecue plate waiting to be sucked dry.”

“Michael.”

“No Jacob. This is the end for me. I’m not being left a husk of skin and bones.” Michael struggled to free himself but was barely able to move.

“I understand,” said the tall man as he grabbed a towel from a go bag and cleaned up his face. “I should of introduced myself.” He said.

“John Peterson and I am a vampire.”

Tough Piece

For some reason the laundry piece has been tough but mix that with life stresses and I find myself missing weekly posts. Thinking of filling in some places with some of my writing. That would involve rewriting some of my signature writing projects. This is not a terrible idea. I tend to do one without the other but that is not necessary.

Question for you:

Which octosubject do you like? Left one or right one?

What advice do you have on light reflecting of the subject’s body?

Romance in a World of Horror

“Jason, you shouldn’t be here,” Amy whispered as the too young lovers hid behind a tree in the back yard.  “You didn’t see what my father did to a Hawkin the other day.  He’s becoming insane.”

Jason leaned back on his heels, looked toward the back porch and then back to Amy.  “I don’t care what he does too me.”

“But… I do.”

“I get that,” Jason replied.  “but I can take care of myself.”

Amy frowned.  Her concern was noticeable even in the darkness.  Jason held her face gently.

“My Amy… this world as twisted and dangerous as it is still evolves but love stays the same.”

“If that’s how you think then meet my parents.”

Jason stepped back.  He stammered all attempts to hold strong disappeared.  Fear evident in his hesitation.


Staring out the window of the house Paul watched as the shadows in the yard stood silently talking.

“They will be ok, Paul,” said Stacy as she approached.

“Will they,” he replied sharply.  “This isn’t pre-invasion earth anymore.  Nobody is safe.  Even if this boy… um… Jason isn’t some shape shifting monster how are we going to protect any more kids.  He is almost a man.  He has reckless passion.  I can’t protect my daughter from the monster and influence of this boy.”

Stacy placed a gentle hand upon Paul’s shoulder.  “She is becoming a woman too.  We can’t protect her from everything…”

Paul turned from the window and stepped to the door.  He slowly opened it.  Stacy protest but he ignored her.  She didn’t know for sure but she felt no reason to worry about her sometimes irrational husband’s actions.  She watched from the covered back porch as Paul approached the couple.

“Son,” Paul began.  Both young adults leapt straight.  Paul had interrupted a kiss.  “I caught you before you ran away this time.  For a young man that wants to be brave for my daughter you are cowardice.”

“Dad, don’t hurt him.”

“I’m not going to hurt him,” Paul replied.  “You love my daughter?”

Jason pawed at the ground with his black, military boots.

“Have you done your mandatory time in the service yet?”

“I have not, sir,” Jason said.

“How are you going to promise anything to my daughter when you may not make it through the service?”

“But… sir…”

“I don’t want to be a ballbuster here son,” Paul began.  “The world is not for the Romantics anymore.  Romance has no place inside a world of horror and pain.”

“I disagree,” Jason said as he straightened his posture and stared at the older man.  “You dare to call me a coward even knowing the facts that I suffered the most horror.  My parents and my sister all killed while I watched with axe in hand.”

Paul tried to respond but Jason continued.  “Even after that horror I still have enough hope to speak to Amy every night.  Enough hope to stand here as you insult me and promise that your daughter will be happy with me as her husband.”

Amy stood shaken by the promise of marriage.

“You would promise to be my daughter’s husband in this world?”

“What other world would I possibly be able to be her husband?”

Paul stood quiet for a long moment.

“You will have to live here with Amy.  How are your grandparents?”

Paul directed the pair toward the house.  Stacy was thrilled to hear the news and invited Jason to dinner.

The Reaper

“Dad Stop!”

The words pierced Darrin’s ears like tiny, sharp knives.  His foot reacted first and stomped on the brakes.  The Jeep lurched forward followed by every passenger.

Stopped in the middle of the road.  An empty, backwoods road Darrin waited for something to happen.

“Sarah!”  Darrin shouted as he turned his head.  He stared at his young, teenage daughter.  She stared back then pointed to an object outside the front window.  Darrin turned back toward the steering wheel and watched as the trees on the right rustled.

“What is it?”  His voice quiet.

“I don’t know,” Sarah replied.

Small branches broke.   A tall, human-like creature stepped from the woods.  It wore a thick, black, hooded cloak and had it’s head down.  Darrin took in a sharp breath and instructed the girls within the Jeep to stay silent.  “It’s a reaper,” he whispered.

The reaper stepped from the trees and the brush on the right side of the road and rose up the embankment.  Darrin watched as it stood three feet from the front of the Jeep.  It’s attention was focused on an object on the left side of the road.  It stopped and waited.

Janice, his wife, noticed it first.  It was a rustle within the brush on the left side of the road.  After a moment it appeared.  A white cat with black stripes stood by the road.  It searched for something… the reaper moved forward and stood near the center of the Jeep.

“You can’t let it eat the cat,” His younger daughter Tracy pleaded.

Darrin scolded her silently.

The reaper moved forward as the cat continued to search.  Once the tall, strange creature became close enough it almost snatched up the cat.  The event so fast it looked as if the reaper disappeared for seconds.  Once it had the cat it bite down upon the soft belly while the cat fought.  The reaper seemed to ignore the scratches till the poor cat had enough and passed away.

“This is disgusting,” Tracy said anger evident in her tone.

Her mother, Janice leaned back.  “Do you want it to be us,” she asked.

Tracy folded her arms and sat back.

After the reaper finished it’s meal it disappeared within the trees.  Darrin put the Jeep into Drive and pulled forward.

 

It Came from the Living – Darkness series

“This scrawny man hopped the train of the dead?”

A large man stood from a circular bench.  He was larger than Angel.  His wings had gone partially gray.  You could see the older age on his face and posture.

The other harpies tried to help him stand but he brushed them off.

“Tell me young man.  How did you climb aboard the Spirit of the Dead?”

Dontarious stepped forward, with a forced smile, he introduced himself.  “I was chasing my wife.  She stepped aboard the train.”

“Is she living too.”

“No,” Dontarius began with hesitation.  “She was murdered.”

“…and you saw this murder?…”

“It’s likely he participated in the murder,” shouted a younger Harpie with bright colors displayed beneath the bones of his wings.

“Hold on, Aristotle.  We must listen first before we conclude that.”

Dontarius swallowed hard as a bottle crashed against a wall to his right.  A burst of laughter then another crash.

“I did not kill my wife.”

“So you’re telling us that you just happened to see your wife’s spirit walking to the Spirit of Death and followed it?”  The younger harpie replied in disbelief.

Dontarious dug his heels into the dirt floor.  “Yes, that’s what happened.  I followed the shimmer, that was my wife.  I saw the train.  I followed her… Rebecca… to the train car but I could not enter.  I found another car that was partially open and I slipped in.”

The older harpie studied him as the younger ones talked amongst themselves, Angel along with them.

Another bottle came close enough to Dontarius’s head to make him duck.

“Hey!”  He shouted.  Can you watch where you’re throwing those things?”

A pair of men, faces distorted and frog-like, laughed.

“Five gold pieces if you can hit the human,” one of them croaked.

“Ten gold piece if you can shut the hell up,” Dontarius replied loudly.  The noise from the bar disappeared as he finished.  The two frog-faced men stood up and approached.

The harpies stopped discussing the arrival or the stranger and watched.  Dontarius prepared for a fight and it came within moments as the first frog-faced man swung and missed.  The second grabbed the first one and pushed him out of the way.  He swung and missed.  Dontarius returned with a kidney punch.  The frog-faced man sucked in and held his side.  Stepped back, took a breath and charged.

Yanfis – Darkness series

The small brick and mortar building in Yanfis withstood a downpour as the rain fell hard.  Dontarious covered his face as Angel disappeared into a small building.  He followed.

The rain was a dim fraction of the noise within this room.  It was full of creatures Dontarious could name from fantasy and mythology.  He saw a couple elves.  The ears extending over their bald, round heads, as they stood at a counter.  A long counter sat on the end of a spacious room.  On top of the counter were stacked glasses.  Behind the counter were several shelves containing glass bottles.  Behind the bar was a strange, snake-like creature that hissed when it spoke.  This creature, green and full of scales, had a pair of human arms and hands and a human-isk face.

“Are you going to move,” someone shouted.  Dontarious turned to see the pale face and extended canines of a vampire.  The quintessential bad guy in any action fantasy he had seen once when he was still on Earth proper.

“You can’t stand in front of the door.  Human, you’re lucky I like this place and have to be invited or you would be a crumpled mass of skin and bone by now.

Dontarious stepped back and looked for Angel.  He found him, with his wings behind his back and pushing through the crowd of noise.  Near the left side of the room several other harpies stood talking.

“He is the only guide I have to this world,” Dontarious told himself and pushed through the crowd of colorful creatures.

“Ah, here he is!”  Angel shouted as Dontarious approached.

“You are hanging with a human, Angel… disgusting,” this harpy wore a Cincinnati Reds baseball can over platinum blond hair.  He looked to be nineteen years old or younger.  His wings were smaller than the rest.

“Angel, we don’t want him around here.”

“Wait,” Angel said addressing the largest of the harpies.  An older looking birdman with greying hair and skin folded under his eyes.  “Christoff, the human can help us with the operation.  If you hear what I’m saying.”

The older harpie stood.  He flexed his wings and shook his head violently.  “How can this small human help us?”

Angel had an answer prepared, “he hopped the Spirit of the Dead from the world above.”

The harpies all gasp at the same time.

Shadows – Darkness series

The shadows began within a mile after stepping out of Narcissus Forest.  They would appear then disappear.  Angel seemed to be unfazed but Dontarious’s eyes darted back and forth.

The tracks lead to the left and rose at a fifteen degrees.  Within a half mile the two were looking over the Shadowlands.

“You said, humans built this land?”  Dontarious asked.

Angel stopped, immediately, and turned.  “Built, no… we built this land.  You humans influenced the land with your technology magic.”

“Technology is not magic…” Dontarious began to argue but stopped.  Angel’s face twisted.  “Legendary creatures are a bit naive,” he continued to say under his breath.

After moments of awkward silence Dontarious stepped forward and continued to follow the tracks toward a long, wooden railroad bridge.  Below the bridge he could see a city.  The buildings were mud and brick but in the darkness of the morning he could see electric lights.

“Electricity?”

“Can we ask some questions in the city below?”

Dontarious looked around but Angel had left him.  Moments later, he found him making his way down a set of stairs toward the small city.

The rain fell hard causing the wooden steps to be a bit slick.  Angel walked expertly with his three-toed claws as Dontarious struggled.  The soles had been worn-down over time.  His earthly job involved long hours on his feet.  It didn’t help that rain had forced his feet to swim.

For the first time he got to take a good look at this monster.  Angel’s wings spread several feet out when at rest.  Dontarious had not seen him fly yet.  Angel had long red hair draping over the thin bones that made up the wings.  He wore a dirty, white linen tied around the waist with a rope.  He was slightly taller than Dontarious at six-feet.  He looked human, as much as possible with the wings.

“What are we walking into?”  Dontarious shouted as the rain clobbered the ground.

“You want to find your wife,” Angel said, “then we need to figure out where that train went.  I have some friends down in Yanfis.”

NaMo – Decisions

“So what are you going to do now?”  Asked Silver as he hung onto the bottom of the car smoking.  

“I don’t know,” Dontarius paused.  He stared up at the tubes that ran across the bottom of the train.  He listened as humans or some creatures talked in English to his right.  

“What kind of world is this?  What am I going to see when I roll out from the bottom of the train?”  

Silver shimmered.  His figure was translucent and faded where it met the sun.  He let go of the train and fell slowly to the rocky rail bed.  He took in a breath from the cigarette and blew it out.  

“The world feeds of the souls of the dead.  What are you expecting?”  

“I came from the world of the living.”

“Right…” Silver replied, “…and your expectations are that the world is covered in incorporeal beings like me.  Translucent spectres that roam the world without purpose.  I’ve been dead a while so my memory of life is fading but I recall some of the stories of death.  The bright light, they called it.  Well, that my friend is the train.  The Spirit of the Dead has been running since before the Maker created our existence.  The world, is covered in matter and life but the souls are transferred and collected throughout the territories.  Many are used up to power the technology.  Where they go after that I have no clue.”  

Dontarius struggled above the rocks but his thoughts wandered to the mission of finding his wife.  He lost her twenty-four hours ago.  He saw the spirit of his wife step from her body and walk out the back of the house.  Dontarius followed his wife’s spirit to the train.  The monstrous engine pushed through the trees behind the house.  The light above the engine blurring all sight of his wife.  Dontarious followed other spirits appearing beside him into the wooden train car.  

“Hey,”  Silver shouted jolting Dontarius from the memory.  

“You’re not the first one to hop on the train.  Human’s like you are still rare around here.  Mainly because you are hunted by every creature walking the territories of Serching.  To answer your question you are lying in Black Fog Downs.  It’s in the territory of King Mor.  The Spirit of the Dead covers the three territories of Qiull.  Morland, Lau and the Realm of Corpses.  Not really all that dark and spooking but the Realm of Corpses holds the prison of Noone.  A terrifying place to even mention and I’ve never been there.  The population survives off of rumor and superstition.  It’s not friendly but it’s home.”  

The train began to hiss.  The train cars shuffled slightly.  “Your search will be short if you don’t figure something out soon.”  

Dontarius searched and crawled toward the large ramp that helped the centaur enter the train car.  He entered the dark crevice and within moments the ramp was lifted and moved.  Dontarius watched as the cars passed in front of him.  The ramp then turned revealing a massive line of cars.  Some storage and built with wooden planks and others rounded passenger cars.  

“If my wife is one of the precious she may be within the passenger cars.  I have to get there,” he thought but the ramp turned away from the train and was placed near a small station on the right.  

“There is no guarantee of that,” Silver quipped from a corner.  

“Guarantee of what?”  

“You wife, she may already be dispersed into the atmosphere.  Only the precious have a physical presence here.”  

Dontarius stared at Silver insulted by the abrupt invasion of his thoughts.  

“Your thoughts are loud as obnoxious as a bull minotaur.”  

When Dontarius recovered he spat, “she is precious.  She has to be.  Why would I be allowed to follow her to the train.  She will have a physical presence.”  

“Well, you’re going to miss your train.”  

The engine whistle blew.  The operator flickered and the engineer took his seat within his car.  The train cars all shifted as the brakes were tested.  The remaining ramps were removed and placed next to the one Dontarius lay in.  

Dontarious left the ramp and darted forward.  He lept from the edge of the station as he heard shouting behind him.  He bolted through thick trees and made his way toward the passenger cars.  he looked back to see a group of centaur standing at the station but they did not move.  The rain above the trees leaked through the thick branches leaving mirror-like puddles between them.  Dontarius stepped through them.  His shoes dampening but soon the train disappeared into darkness.  

Dontarius slowed then stopped after the trees disappeared and the darkness surrounded him.  

“Hello!”  

A light appeared then others till a hallway appeared.