Soul Eater – The Jackal

“Here is the frightening truth, my friend,” the strange creature said with a slight smile, “there is life after death. This world… the here and now. Is your truth.”

The creature smiled as he thought for a second. He shucked some of the dust from his large dark feathers and stepped forward. “Listen to me, tall, dark and mute. You can sit there in your life-long stupor and mourn the life you had in that other world. The world that, coincidentally, crapped you into this one, or you can get off your ass and do something awesome with us. Narcissus has something special planned for the soul eater. That being you.”

The stranger looked up and stared at the creature. He looked him over. His hair-covered face and head. His bright, colorful clothing and finally the wings. The stranger stood and stared into the dark eyes of this meta-human. He raised his hands and clapped them multiple times in rhythm. The stranger’s face stared forward, unimpressed. The other passengers in the car, most of them now fully formed humans, stared silently waiting for the creatures reaction.

“Ah, I get it.” He said. “You are one of those funny men. The rebel assholes that don’t follow the rules. I get you, trust me. I get you completely cause… you know I have experience.” The creature then thrust his right hand up and twisted his wrist. He turned and continued to look over the railroad car that had now become full of flesh and blood humans.

“The engineer is not going to be happy with all this going on. Remanifesting dead humans is so illegal in these woods. Eww… he is going to be pissed and there is going to be blood everywhere.”

Above the car, upon the roof was the sound of hooves marching toward them. The creature began to speak but his voice stumbled. He cleared his throat and tried again. “Speaking of the engineer… that sounds like him.”

Another few steps and the other winged men began to stir. “Mr. Jackal, sir. We need to go now.” Whimpered another winged humanoid.

“You guys are such…” The Jackal began but stopped when a snake-like monster peered from the large hole in the passenger train. He motioned for the cabin to be quiet. Then instructed his men to grab the stranger and restrain him with a roll of plastic wrap.

They grasp the stranger and dragged him backward toward the rear door. The Jackal reached over and grasp a long wire that was strung along the top corner of the car and pulled. The breaks scream and the car slowed. Anyone standing, fell forward and that included whatever was on the roof. The snake-like creature disappeared from the hole in the ceiling. The Jackal leapt through the hole and onto the roof followed by his feathered friends. The stranger was wrapped in plastic from the shoulders down and carried upward by a sixth creature.

Once upon the roof the engineer lie on top of the car in front of them. He had four hooves and six snake-like heads all connected at the base of the horse. He struggled to stand with his snake-like heads trying to lift the 400lb creature. The Jackal and his gang spread their wings and lifted from the train.

Soul Eater – The Spirit of the Dead – All aboard!!

Rain fell upon the stranger’s head. Thunder grumbled in the distance. The new world he stood in was dark, dank and full of sadness. The stranger looked around to see a decomposing shack behind him. It’s rain soaked planked walls weighed down by years of neglect. Words, painted in white, spell out mysterious destinations.

-Artemisia

-Obsidian

-Deuterium

-Ambrosia

Beside the names was a small rain-soaked sheet. White splashes if paint drip down the right-side. Painted on the sheet is a dark train. Followed with the words:

“Missing

Train of Light

Taken by the Darkness -1863”

A sharp gust of wind shoved past him and struck the rain-soaked sheet. Something grasp the sheet and ripped it from the wall. The sheet fell to the wooden floor. The stranger watched as a human form stood in the rain for a moment then disappeared. The wooden planks below his feet shook. The stranger turned. A plume of white smoke stalked through the dark trees. The Spirit of the Dead pushed through the dark of night toward the stranger.

A large articulated locomotive, painted black, stretched eighty-five foot from cowcatcher to cab. The engineer stood behind black iron windows and is shackled to an iron loop in the floor. The fireman faded into the darkness, then reappeared. He shoveled a substance into the firebox then flickered out of existence. The engineer stood with his long left arm upon the whistle and waiting till the station appears.

The black train runs on the essence of life.  The molecular essence of every living being on the train, collected within a steel-walled tender. Upon the tender is a set of ledges, one on top and the second two feet above the train wheels.  The ledge on the top was merely decorative but the one on the bottom was two foot wide, barely enough room to walk across.  Aluminum hand holds are placed at body length along both sides of the car.  In the center of the car, painted on both sides, is ‘Spirit of the Dead’.

The engineer pulled and the whistle released a scream from above the train.  The scream pierced the darkness and started the stranger. He watched as the large train approached the wooden deck. He saw beside him another figure, feminine but ghostlike. Another, then several more. They appeared with a suddenness. From ghostlike to human, bone and muscle. They all appeared fully clothed but dressed in period clothing. Almost like a Western on the television back when he was a child. He stared down upon his dress to find himself wearing a pair of faded jeans and a t-shirt stained in large dark patches.

The whistle blew a second time.

The Spirit of the Dead approached the wooden deck of the train station.  The engineer pulled the brake. Forced air pushed the thick rain soaked air out of the way as the brakes squealed. The stranger watched as the engine passed the station.  Followed by passenger cars.

The engineer pulled hard upon the brakes forcing the cars to jostle and jam into each other. When the train came to a stop the engineer disappeared from the engine and reappeared upon the side of the engine and then reappeared upon the wooden station deck.  He disappeared again and reappeared near the front corner of the engine.  He seemed to be inspecting the train.  From Benin’s the tender car a large man appeared.  He meticulously walked along the side of the car holding the handles as he went.  A chain danging from both ankles.  He then disappeared within the cab.  Several large wooden doors opened within the passenger cars behind the engine.  

Several men stepped from the cars and jumped to the wooden deck. They then turned and folded down a set of steel stairs built within the bottom of the cars.  The men, dressed in black, stood and waited as ghost-like figures stepped from the cars. The figures mingled with some of the ghost on the station then the station began to clear.

“All aboard!”

The stranger