Enjoy these excerpts from newly released, The Darkest Alleyway, a compilation of early poetic works. Many human elements may be found within these pages, ranging from love, laughter, vulgarity, honesty and beyond...
Below is the poem that began her writing career...
Mother Nature in Distress
Her darkened, enchanted eyes
Hover in the skies
Below is her land, her love
She silently watches from above.
Her eyes are brown, with purple hue
The sky above shines indigo blue
The colors match and blend
The grief she feels will never end.
Crimson tears, matching brows
From her eyes, sorrow grows
Endless pollution of her land
The earth she created, damned.
She is beautiful, age does not defy
The youthful look, a twinkle in her eye
Her own appearance does not change
Just that of her children will rearrange.
A desert lies beneath her eyes
A lone cactus withers and dies
Pollution is her pain
Destroying with its reign.
She mourns for change from destructive ways
Vultures circle, for them death pays
She is surrounded by selfishness and distress
Wondering how her world will progress.
Her children, nature, she shared with others
Where fighting engages our sisters and brothers
War has taken forests with fire
Years will pass, reconstruction is dire.
Partiers throw beer bottles around
Covering the once green-colored ground
Growing waste and toxic fumes
No one notices, pollution resumes.
Stretching into the air, clouding ozone
The result is creation becoming undone
Her precious children, the land, the trees
Suffer along with our oceans and seas.
The world will continue
Her tears will fall too
Uncertain what to do.
But the sadness of her dying land
Causes her to reach out a hand
And devour creatures of negligence
By wiping a hand across existence.
In the social world the problem begins
But we cannot blame nature for our sins
As she suffers, watching the pain
Destruction of her land drives her insane.
Realization and the ability to care
Will save her land from becoming bare
She built mountains, deserts and rivers to nurture
But lives in sad disgrace as Mother Nature.
Created December 03, 2002
Beneath a gentle moon
The weight of the Pacific
heading into oblivion.
Created March 15, 2005
Below, enjoy the Introduction and first chapter of
July 2010 release, The Demon's Fog...
Three males and one female.
Not your typical circle of friends. But some might say four boys hung together, since the girl was your typical tomboy.
Mina Clyne, Jesse Webber, Ryan Fisher and Scott Wood have shared 13 years of friendship. Through those years, from science fiction to the seemingly simpler events of the world and science- such as the evolution of a caterpillar into a butterfly, a tadpole into a frog; this adventure-seeking team has watched in their explorations.
Like detectives, the four have competed with their intelligence, seeing whose hypothesis or idea could explain matters best by checking facts to prove it. As friends, of course, they have disagreed constantly, agreeing nearly as much. It is a friendship based upon the rebuttal of differing ideas and opinions.
Intellectually challenging of themselves, together they attended the same college with scholarships based on their high school academic performance. Together, they graduated the same year. Even the expected wild life of dorm living could not deter their pursuit of intellectual matters.
On this particular day, back in the small town of Joseph City, Arizona, the four gathered at Scott’s house. Searching the Internet for disgusting, horrible or just plain unexplainable events was typical behavior for them. Each had their own belief in the supernatural, though it listed lower on the level of possibilities for some, particularly since science explained a great deal of the workings of the universe.
And so, yes, this is how it all began…
“Check out this one. Wow,” Jesse said.
Ryan looked up from his book at the half naked brunette sprawled across the screen.
“Yeah, she’s attractive,” he replied.
But his voice lacked the interest Jesse’s had. Without another word, Ryan looked back at his book and began to read.
Jesse scoffed and shook his head. His face was mired with sarcasm. He started to turn towards Ryan but was stopped by his reflected mirror image, seduced by himself. His skin glowed a shiny bronze regularly enhanced by the Arizona sun. For a moment, he thought of how attractive he was.
“I am really sexy,” he said.
At 21, with tamed, sandy blonde hair and entrancing brown eyes, Jesse spent the most time entertaining his perversions. He had always been more attractive to the opposite sex, though his interest did not lie in one for very long. He flexed a muscle to his reflection. The flattened doppelganger moved with him, causing him to smile amongst his vanity. His fine athletic build gave him the strong, sexy appearance he needed to downplay his intelligence.
Finally, he turned fully, facing Ryan. But Ryan didn’t look up to acknowledge him. He kept his nose in the book.
“Put the book down and check this one out,” Jesse said.
Ryan shook his head, still not looking up.
“No thanks,” he replied.
Ryan appreciated a woman’s beauty, but did not like to see them on a sleazy, pornographic sight. He was 21 as well; though much more mentally mature than Jesse. Considered a dweeb, or dork most of his life, he took his role proudly, never attempting to fit into the image of beauty in society.
Jesse turned away from Ryan, clicking away at a different site. His eyes widened. Jesse shrieked in excitement.
“Oh man! Look at this. Bet you don’t know what they call that,” he said, laughing in his obnoxious way.
Ryan looked up.
“Ha, ha, ha. Very funny. I’ve had a girlfriend before. Thanks,” Ryan defended himself.
Continuing on his newest crusade, Jesse typed in the web address to find disgusting sexual fetishes. Watching as the screen popped up, he was always baffled at the sickening sights he found.
Jesse began whimpering like a dog. Ryan ignored him.
Instead, he reached into his small black book bag and retrieved a notebook. Scribbling on the paper, he took notes from his latest book on fascinating aspects of the meteor. He planned on finding out the sizes of the largest meteor, the heaviest, the smallest, where they had fallen and more. It was endless how many facts were in existence for only one topic. After viewing a shooting star in the sky just a few nights ago, he became obsessed with the universe above.
Jesse’s voice intruded again over Ryan’s studies.
“I don’t want to watch you watch disgusting sexual fetishes. Just shut up and leave me alone. Can’t you see I’m busy?” Ryan said, without looking up.
He didn’t want his mind polluted. More than that, his book was more interesting than Jesse and his fantasies could ever be.
“You’re a dork,” Jesse replied.
Before Ryan could counter, Mina and Scott walked through the bedroom door with snacks in hand.
Jesse hurriedly clicked the exit icon, so that they wouldn’t see what he was looking at on Scott’s computer.
“What took you guys so long? I’m hungry,” Jesse asked, lingering in his obnoxious tone.
Moving towards Jesse, Mina’s dark eyes widened at his bossiness. Her tall, thin figure stopped, towering over him from his sitting position. Short, almond colored hair hung straight and fine around her face, without a bit of frizz. Her stunning, natural beauty and nearly flawless complexion never matched her voice or physique.
Jesse’s eyes focused on her face, a look of arrogance still draped upon his.
Obnoxiously, she dropped a bag of chips onto his lap.
“Next time you go if you’re so hungry,” she said.
Abruptly she turned away with a misanthropic air following behind her. Jesse smiled sarcastically though his voice softened as he plowed into the bag.
“Thank you,” he replied.
“So what did you guys do while we were gone?” Scott asked.
“Nothing,” Jesse hurriedly replied, with the guilty look of a weasel spreading across his face.
“This moron was looking up porn again,” Ryan spouted out.
“Again?” Scott asked.
Jesse’s face flushed red in embarrassment.
“Sorry,” he said to Scott.
Jesse turned to Ryan, changing his tone, “Thanks a lot asshole, for telling him.”
Jesse’s embarrassment lingered inside of him. It wasn’t that he thought Scott would be mad; it was just that he had a lot of respect for him. Of the group, Scott wore the nice guy title. He would not tell Scott, of course, but deep down, he admired him.
Mina rolled her eyes, uninterested in their fetishes.
“So what’s the subject for the day?” she asked.
She was already bored.
“Meteors,” Ryan responded of his own topic in a quiet, contemplative voice.
“I meant for us, what can we find to debate about?” she asked.
She was in the mood for some fun, stimulating conversation.
Jesse’s eyes lit up.
“We should find something on the Internet,” Jesse added.
“We don’t want to talk about sex with you,” Ryan said, his face draped with disgust.
“Shut up man, I meant real topics. Maybe missing person reports again,” Jesse said.
He looked around at the rest of the group. A tone of seriousness crept into his voice, “We haven’t studied those in a long time. And they’re always happening.”
“That is actually a good idea,” Mina said.
“Sounds good to me,” Scott agreed, nodding his head.
Jesse jumped back onto the computer, finding the proper search engine. Searching, he pulled up a website for cases of missing persons. Mina, Scott and Ryan eagerly gathered behind him, watching over his shoulder for anything interesting. Several minutes later, Jesse pulled up a news article and began to read.
“Joanie Milkin, kidnapped from a grocery store in Milwaukee, age 13,” Jesse read, “Sound like a good one?” he asked, turning to face the rest of the group.
“Nah, too common,” Mina replied, “We have to find something more unique.”
He turned back to his search.
“How about John Kingloy, kidnapped in California while with his father on a fishing trip?” he tried again.
“Hmmm,” Ryan muttered.
“Getting better,” Scott replied, “Look up the details.”
Jesse pulled up the screen and they began to read.
Apparently, the eight-year old boy had gone fishing with his father and his father’s friend. Allegedly, while the father ran to a nearby store for drinks and snacks, the friend of the family disappeared with the son.
“Interesting,” Jesse said.
Ryan pushed his glasses up his nose.
“Well what do you think? Do you think the father set it up?” he asked, “Maybe for money?”
Mina shook her head.
“Nah. What kind of father would do that? Of course, how could someone you are friends with just take your child like that?” she asked, “How could someone let them?”
“Probably was a set up,” Jesse agreed, “By the father.”
Now Scott shook his head.
He had to trust the man to leave the boy with him though. I don’t know, I don’t think it was a set-up. I just think the friend must have planned it out really well,” Scott added.
“How long ago did that happen?” Mina asked.
She wanted more details before making a decision.
“Two years ago,” Jesse replied.
“And they still haven’t found him?” Mina whispered.
“What would he do with a child?” Ryan wondered.
Mina blinked harshly.
“Well there are many things, he could have given him to another family, he could have molested him, he could have raised him as his own son if he loved the boy…” Mina offered, before Jesse interrupted.
“Or he could have killed the boy as some sort of sick, diluted experiment in his own desires to want to experience what it is like to inflict such a pain on another being,” Jesse replied.
An odd look crossed Jesse’s face.
Everyone quieted as the group looked at him suspiciously. Jesse always had the sickening aspect of people down, and they wondered at times if it was his own release of testing the waters of committing violent and explicit deeds.
Feeling their eyes on him, he realized that he had intermingled what he viewed as the sickening ways of all people into their current discussion.
Jesse shrugged his muscular shoulders, “It can happen, some people are sick,” he said, trying to brush it off.
Instead of continuing to figure out what happened, Jesse dug deeper to find different cases. The rest of the group moved away from the computer as they contemplated and discussed the last case. But they didn’t have long to consider it before Jesse waved them back. And this was a typical day for them.
“Hey, look at this. This is kind of odd,” Jesse shrieked.
Ryan, Mina and Scott quickly returned to the computer. Jesse summarized the news article out loud.
“22-year old Carey Suttle was at a log cabin in Idaho, about seven years ago when the cabin caught fire. The dental records of her and her boyfriend were used to match the bodies but her younger sister, who was 18, just disappeared. There was no evidence of her body anywhere around,” Jesse said.
Excitement rushed through his voice, matching the inner eagerness of the others.
“Fire starter,” Ryan said.
But his voice was a whisper, lost in a movie of another time. The others ignored his film addiction.
“How did the fire start?” Mina asked.
“Did someone light it?” Scott asked.
Jesse read further.
“No,” Jesse said.
Shock whisked across his face.
“It was due to faulty wiring in the cabin. The cabin was a vacation home that had just been worked on. The electrician did a half-assed job.”
Scott stood back, his bright blue eyes aglow.
“What the hell happened to the other girl?” he asked.
Ryan shrugged, seeming to come back to reality.
“Maybe she woke up in the middle of the fire and escaped. Is there a lake close to the cabin?” Ryan asked.
Jesse read on, his eyes scanning as quickly as he could.
“It says search teams went out, but there was no sign of her. No, it says right here that there was no water source close to the fire. Nothing could explain the missing person,” Jesse said.
Mina tapped her finger against her chin, thinking hard.
“Perhaps she became crazy because she couldn’t save her sister and wandered into the woods, dying of exposure,” Mina hypothesized.
Scott shook his head.
“They probably would have found her body though. She wouldn’t have made it very far,” Scott reasoned.
“That’s true,” Mina realized, though she knew that people in shock tended to have different reactions and sometimes, unexpected strength.
“But look here,” Jesse pointed excitedly at the screen, “It says there was a pile of ashes a few feet from the cabin. It was several feet high, but they couldn’t tell what burned at that part of the scene.”
“Could she have run out of the cabin on fire then?” Mina offered.
“But look here,” Jesse pointed again, “There were no teeth left over in the pile- nothing to decipher with dental records, no bones either, just ash. But if she were outside, she would have had a better chance of putting out the fire by rolling on the ground. It was just a pile of ashes.”
Jesse’s eyes opened wide, his voice incredulous now.
“That wasn’t her body,” Mina started, “I doubt that she would have burned completely to ash with no bodily remnants. Maybe she ran to the road, flagged someone down and was kidnapped from there.”
“That’s possible,” Scott agreed.
Ryan shook his head.
“Depending on how far away the main road was and since it was a cabin, I’d imagine the road was quite a ways away,” Ryan added.
“It was in the middle of the woods,” Jesse finished.
Their debate continued until Mina had to leave for work. At the end of the day, they decided they didn’t have anything extra to add to the missing cases report. There were just too many theories and possibilities to be picked apart.
They all parted ways. Jesse went home to look at some pornographic magazines he ordered, Ryan went to his house to read in the comfort of his room, while Scott surfed the Internet and emailed some of his other friends. None of them continued to mull over the case, except for Mina.
The case rang on her mind as she rang people’s orders into the cash register. Although she had a Biology degree, Mina worked two unfulfilling jobs, one at a café and the other at the local library. Her brain needed the stimulation she lacked. And this case seemed like a good start.
The more she thought about the case, she realized that it was just one example of a sad occurrence, a tragedy of youth. But that was not what she focused on. Her mind wandered with the pile of ashes in the scene nearby.
How could this pile, this lone pile of ash several feet in height stand where nothing explainable had burned?
Of the group of friends she encircled herself with; she tended to take on more of an interest in the supernatural. To her, it just seemed strange that stories of monsters and ghosts could exist, without proper evidence of origins.
She believed they existed.
The evidence must be alive, though it is probably hidden well, she thought to herself.
When the workday ceased and she returned home that night, Mina immediately logged onto her computer. The others would have no interest in the case since it was so difficult, so she would research it on her own. Recently, she had not been able to find anything to drag her interest until now.
Hours passed until her eyestrain and stiff neck caused her to question her use of time. She blinked and looked away from the screen, still seeing the endless lines of sentences and paragraphs all tangled together in her vision.
Not even one more case.
She could not find another missing case with the same similarities. After hours of reading and researching with no new results, she gave up for the night. Her brain was spinning with the faces and words of lost people’s stories. All those stories had no visible, shared ending with the rest of humanity. She tried to blink away the sadness, the sorrow buried in those faces and the faces of those who loved the missing. Together, they began to jumble in her tired mind.
She lay down and stared at the ceiling. Tomorrow, when she was not so tired, she would be able to do better research.
From the Perils of Melancholy:
In sight of failure comes the knell
Ringing loud, but slow that bell
Signifying an altered perception now
The tide is death and you will bow.
Sweet, ungraceful melancholy's mettle
For lovers in (dis)content will settle
Disturbed by the pain in her soul
Listless spirit- fate bestowed the hole.
Ancient riddles- dreams you caressed
Separate love from your chest
Watch fiery fledglings catapult your fear
Winged demon afar, but always near.
Chart your fate, this course
Crying, moaning, lost discourse
Desultory ways, you are obscure
Your dreams involve roaming forever and more.
Castaway you suffer eternal loneliness
This is what you made.
Created June 10, 2009
From A Dark Kaleidoscope
I have searched the world for my greatest pleasures. I have fulfilled them time and time again. I have tested the world, endangered it and killed parts of man and his land. When people speak of me, I always stand alone. My latest mission is one of which no one, not even God himself could understand. I wander the world in the form of a human in a curious, yet perhaps futile attempt to understand their inadequate ways.
My new identity goes by the name of Brian Williams. I am 25 years old. I wear black hair, brown eyes, a dimpled smile I scarcely use and a mischievous, though pearly white grin. I stand at 6’2 with a developed, muscular build, which I never had to work for. With an almost secret job like my own, I can’t complain. I always get what I want. This time, I plan to do things differently, as this is the most memorable story I will ever be able to tell…
Ding, ding, ding.
I walk the streets, hating the ringing bells signifying the Christmas time to come. Why wouldn’t I be disgusted by the celebration of my enemies? It is only weeks away from that celebratory time and every street corner seems to rush it in. Each store fills my ears with the joyful sounds of angels and everything holy. It makes me want to yell and spread a fiery wrath around the towns, to euthanize this entire land in one big burst…but that would be too kind of a way to incinerate the earth’s creatures. But then I also remember the agreement, which for now forces me to walk away with anger in hand.
As I walk through the crowded plaza of city streets, I inherently know human time. It is around noon. I decide alcohol will do the trick of trial. Perhaps it will act as my temporary anger moderator. While in my human form, I can actually feel the buzz that humanity thrives off of. However, just as quickly, I can kill the feeling and venture back onto the sobriety of the powerful being that I am. I will just take the liquor back to my hotel room and shut out the sounds of cheer until the charming evil of night comes around.
As I walk past a food store, the repetitive dinging sound of charity bells rattles my nerves. The human bell ringer is standing just before me. Slowly, I turn to this man who is bundled up in a large jacket, ringing his bell even faster towards me. Natural fire builds up inside my chest. I could have exploded into my natural form right then and there. My anger and hatred for plebeians is undeniable. I’m still not sure why I would put myself through this, what with my temper and lack of patience. It’s certainly a trial I shouldn’t try, however much I enjoy torture.
I snarl at him, permitting him to see the fire of many ages through my eyes. His face freezes and the bell stops mid-swing. Before I can allow myself to cause him greater harm, I turn away. I turn back to my original path and walk directly into a woman. I begin to snarl again, I just can’t help it, people are a nuisance and I have exactly no patience. So I’m spoiled. But wouldn’t you be if you were me?
But then something odd happens. The woman before me looks at me and I smile. Her wavy almond colored hair and dark eyes match those of my body, her pale skin illuminated her face into a glow and those red lips make my semi-human heart beat faster. She smiles back at me. Those lips curve upward and I see her naked in an instant. Then I stop myself for the first time ever. Lust was all I lived for.
When we collided, I had knocked a bag from her hands, but I was too mesmerized by her to even stop and pick it up. As she looked into my eyes, she seemed to have forgotten she dropped it. I didn’t try to entrance her or show fire with my eyes nor did I entice her with any other sort of natural trickery. For once, I was astonished that she was willingly enchanted by me. She was looking at me, staring with real and natural interest. Wow. Usually I scare people off in an instant even when I’m not trying.
An awkward silence filled us as neither said a word. I stare into her soul. To my dismay, she is clean, she is caring and she has not committed any major sins. But she still carries a small bit of the potential for evil deeds around with her that I love and exist for.
Now, someone bumps into me from behind, trying to get around me. I almost snarl, but I stop. To mask my disdain, I bend down and pick up her package. She moves down at the same time but is agile enough not to bump heads with me. It’s a good thing- I’m pretty sure she would be hurt by the impact. A small bottle of perfume had rolled from the bag.
“Christmas shopping?” I ask.
I smile although my insides are disgusted at the thought. So was this what it was like to be human? A whole bunch of pretentious lines to get what you want. Well I guess as coward-like as it was, it’s no better than some of the ways I normally get what I want.
“Um, no,” she says, looking away as if ashamed, “We don’t celebrate Christmas.”
Oddly, a strange joy rose within me. I shrugged it off as the interception of some kind of weird human feeling. Human skin is the mad mask of vulnerability.
“Neither do we,” I say.
My mischievous grin can’t help but take over now.
She looks enlightened, as if she does not have to feel ashamed of her beliefs.
“Thank you,” she says.
I hand her bag to her but I say nothing more.
“I have to get back to work.”
She smiles one last time, then moves around me. My human-like heart pounds fast. I shake my head, ignoring the intensity of interest that is trying to replace my natural indifference.
‘What the hell is wrong with me,’ I wonder.
I keep walking, but that face pierces my mind. I cannot quit seeing her and how she looked at me without me making her. I try to think of Chernobyl or any other lingering disaster that excites me, but her face keeps coming back.
Finally, I make it to the liquor sore. I grab a bottle of Jack and then reach into my pocket. A large wad of money appears there. I pay and then walk out. I don’t know exactly what it tastes like but many of my prisoners have asked, even begged for a drink of this. I figure it must be something good. Perhaps I could go back to the pits for a little bit and drink it in front of them for torture. Nah, not today. It’s not fun transforming so often and the fire that waits would singe this skin beyond repair.
Although I might enjoy the taste of a fine whiskey, I decide Coke would wash it down better for a leisurely afternoon. A Jack and Coke. That’s what many of my prisoners ask for. How dull of them. You would think they’d request a new chance at life. Not those morons. They just ask for a Jack and Coke.
As I head back to the store, the bellman has resumed ringing. When I pass by him, I don’t look in his face this time; instead I just smile in my sickening way. He stops the bell, reminding me of a toy robot whose battery just died.
‘Ahhh, I love being me,’ I think, ‘what is better than power?’
Inside the store, as I look for the line with the fewest people, I see her. She works here; she is a cashier. Her eyes catch mine just as I see her. Perhaps this is what those terrible angels meant when they would say something ‘was meant to be.’ Really, I never believed in any of that nor did I think I would see her again.
She was so gentle, so strong, so… I could not find enough words to describe her. My heart pounded, I began to sweat. What was this? I’m a primal, impulsive being, so I never have to feel nervous. Perhaps I have spent too much time here in this human body already. Maybe the human ways are trying to integrate into my personality. Yuck.
Finally, it was my turn to check out.
“Long time, no see,” she says.
Long, spider-like black lashes fluttered beautifully and I forgave her cliché. It was so beautiful just to watch those lips speak.
“Yeah,” I smiled.
But that was all that came out.
“Starting the night off early?” she asked, nodding at the paper bag tucked under my arm.
“Ah, just trying to relax a little while I’m in town,” I say, “On vacation.”
I think my cheeks turned red. I think I was embarrassed, but that is hard for someone like me to admit.
“Vacation, that’s what I need,” she says, “Your total is $1.69.”
I hand her the money, then find the suave I so frequently display.
“Would you like to have dinner with me later?” I ask, “You are such a beautiful lady and I would enjoy the companionship.”
She blinks nervously and doesn’t say anything at first. This silence makes me anxious. She’s summoning the courage. I can see it.
“Sure, I work until 6,” she says.
“Good, good, shall I pick you up here at eight?” I ask.
I’m a little forward but that’s okay. She’s a little shy. If nothing else, I could always eat her for dinner. But that would be in violation of the temporary agreement.
“That would be great,” she says.
“Well, I’ll see you later,” I smile, walking out the door.
Once outside, I let out a large breath of relief. How could I let a simple human girl cause me such anxiety? The bell ringer stopped again as I approached and I laughed. Then I looked at the man and smiled this time. He simultaneously rang his bell.
‘What the hell did I just do?’
I shook my head.
After a few drinks, the alcohol did not help. My nerves were acting up. These feelings were so new to me. Why would I let myself be put in such a vulnerable state as this? Humans are nothing but a slew of vulnerability from birth onward. How disgusting, decrepit and well, well, just plain weird it was to learn to be one of them. Yet I couldn’t surrender the form I wore. At least not yet.
Around 7:30, I walked out the door wearing a nice black suit. What kind of car did I want? A silver corvette appeared before me as I got in, starting the ignition. On the passenger seat, six blood red roses waited.
As I pulled into the plaza, the woman waited. A long, black overcoat covered her dress. She looked absolutely stunning the way the wind blew her dark hair around her pale face. I planned to take her to the best restaurant.
“What a nice car,” she said.
As she got in, I handed her the roses. Immediately her face was drawn to them in search of the enticing, sweet aroma.
“You are so sweet, thank you,” she says, “What’s the catch?”
“Catch?” I ask.
I did not know what she meant.
“What’s the catch?” she asks again, “You’re a handsome man, apparently with an excellent job, a nice car and you gave me roses on the first date. Men don’t do that, unless there’s a catch.”
I laugh, “You just might have to marry me,” I say, “There’s no other catch.”
She laughed, but was hoping I was joking. She didn’t know me after all.
At dinner, we talked easily. A bond seemed to be growing between us already. It was a strange feeling for us both. So I admit it, I used my powers to know what she was thinking and feeling. So I cheat sometimes when it comes to reading humans. How else would I be so good at my job?
After dinner, we held hands, walking around the town, although neither one of us really cared for the joyful lights and continuing sounds of Christmas.
“Gabrielle Anne, you have to be the most beautiful woman on earth, inside and out,” I say.
She stops, letting go of my hand.
“How did you know my middle name?” she asks.
I stop too, taking her hand again. Reluctantly, she lets me, though there is fear in her eyes.
“You would not believe me. I would have to show you,” I say.
She pulls her hand away.
“This is weird, too weird,” she says.
She starts walking away. Somehow, I immediately feel crushed. Suddenly, for the first time ever, I don’t just feel alone but also lonely.
“Gabrielle, just give me five minutes,” I holler after her, “you know you have never felt this way before.”
She stops, but does not turn around. I go to her; I take her hand again and then lead her to a bench. Her expression bothers me, but I should have expected it. This could go either way. Although, with my power, I could have her against her will anyway. However, there’s the seasonal agreement that keeps lurking in the corner of my mind. I wouldn’t want to start a war over Christmas, now would I? I chase those thoughts away and turn my attention to her.
“Gabrielle, there are so many things about the world that you hear, but never understand. I know more than anyone who has ever graced this land and I am willing to share it with you. Imagine a life of having everything you want all the time, of others bowing down to you like you are their queen and I their king. In the life I live, I am the king. And I want you to accompany me in it. I cannot tell you in this moment who I am, but I can show you. But do not be frightened, I will not come to harm you and you may decline to join me,” I say.
I don’t know if I’m being honest or not. But she doesn’t know that. She sits there in silence.
“You are a human who is very unlike any of the others I have seen. You made me feel nervous for the first time, you made my heart pound and you have made me sweat. Already you have made me smile at times I could not. Just please come with me and we will have each other for eternity,” I say.
She looks into my eyes and sees sincerity.
“Will you come with me?” I ask.
“I will come with you now, but I will not promise anything,” she says.
In a flash, we are at the hotel room. I pull the curtains in front of the windows and she sits on the chair. I stand before her.
“Please do not be frightened. I am only showing you who I really am because I do not want to keep secrets. You should have the choice,” I say.
I can’t yet know if my words are true. Yet somehow I think they are. She nods her head in fearful agreement and anticipation.
I take a deep breath. Instantly, my skin begins to sizzle, evaporating with a clear mist that turns into a thickening fog and then a red steam permeating from my body. Flesh begins to slowly drip away from me in small layers at first. Tints of red skin began to show through. Now, the skin chafes off in larger chunks, settling and sizzling against the floor before me.
She gasps, holding tightly to the arm of the chair, sinking back into it in fear.
The flesh dissolves quickly, my scaly red skin peeling through entirely. My clothes rip off completely. Webbed wings grow unrestrained out from behind me stretching out and spanning across the room. My human face melts away as chiseled cheeks and a pointed chin poke through. Bug-like beady black eyes stare out at her in circular shape. My legs and arms lengthen, with long yellow claws appearing at my fingertips.
She gasps more. She looks as if she could faint at any time and I hear her heart beating hard. Somehow, she keeps her composure. She keeps telling herself to be strong and I wonder if she can.
My legs lengthen even more, bringing me up to the ceiling, though I have to quickly duck down to keep from breaking it. I open my mouth, showing large, yellowed wide pointed teeth. A spiked tongue whips out to show that it is several feet in length. Scales moved down my back, between my wings, following down to a thick, snake-like pointed tail. Now, I can see that she is really frightened.
In an instant, I am sitting next to her on the couch, wearing exactly the same type of tuxedo in the same form I had when I met her tonight for the date. I take her hand and kiss it and then realize the quick change back into human form was too much for her. She looks at me and her eyes roll into the back of her head, showing me the whites just before she faints.
To my surprise, she doesn’t immediately awaken. I let her sleep as I pace the room. Within her dream state, I can’t read her and do not know her decision. Perhaps she needs to sleep on it to decide.
The next morning, she awakens at 9:20, in quite a panic. She does not immediately realize where she is. I soothe her and then she begins telling me she had a most horrible dream. Just as she says it, a realization sweeps over her. It was not a dream. She looks at me, she is scared, ready to flee, but I pull her into a kiss. The soft warmth of our wet lips meet so impulsively, flashing insatiable electric vibes through our bodies. I know that she feels undeniably good. I want to touch her and she wants me to do more, but I don’t. Minutes later, I pull back. Her face is stunned; she was deeply lost in the feeling. Part of her wonders why I stopped. The other part of her is still scared.
“Well, what do you think?” I ask.
She looks away from me.
“I never felt like that before. You are heaven and hell in an instant,” she says.
“Yes, I am,” I say.
She looks at me then with pleading, pouting dark eyes.
“I don’t want to sell my soul to the devil,” she says.
I laugh, “You can retain your soul if you must, but that means you will not fully acquire the powers of the dead. You will never be able to shape shift.”
“How do I know you will not trick me or leave me for another woman? The devil is said to be so deceptive. How will I ever trust you?” she asks.
I pull a ring from my pocket. It is a large, gold ring with a throne on it.
“I have been around since before the earth and I have never sought companionship. Perhaps I am getting lonely in my old age. Yes, I can be deceptive, but with you, I will promise to make an exception, unless you deceive me. I cannot stress this enough. I will keep my word to you honest and forever, unless you deceive me by giving in to the lusts that will surround you as well. I will find out, as I am the ruler of Hell. If I ever deceive you first…” I take in a long breath, “then you shall have my throne and I will wither away in shame. I give you this ring to instill my promise.”
I place it on her finger, as if marrying her.
She looks up at me then. Her eyes flash hope and desire.
“Now you must consider this carefully,” I start, “I am evil and my business is in hurting others, with the exception of you. I will treat you like a queen. I treat others badly, I destroy land and I kill men with their desires. I may allow you to counsel with me, but I cannot be told to be a kind being, because I am not. If I changed, there would be an uneven balance in the world, which would cause man to live forever unpunished in an already overpopulated world. In the matter of your soul, if you choose to keep it, you will grow old and die and your soul will travel on to another place, either place. I will allow my human body to grow old with you, but I will not die. I prefer for you to live in another form as I do. I will never let anyone hurt you and if they do, they shall suffer in the deepest of torture for the rest of their time,” I say.
“I’m flattered,” she jokes.
She sits there in silence. I watch her face. She turns to me.
“Make me one like you. I will have the power to change into anything?” she asks.
“Anything,” I say.
“Then I will join you, forever,” she says.
I pull her into a kiss. This is a longer kiss that places us into the deepest throngs of desire. When she opens her eyes, we are in a red room ornamented and mirrored with silver and gold just like an ancient king’s palace. A long table lined with candles sits in the middle of the room. Chandeliers hang from the ceiling, their light casting only a dim red glow. The entire room is made up of her favorite colors of black, red and silver with a few specks of gold. It is so beautiful to her. I watch her face as she looks around in awe. We are sitting on a long leather couch, with a shiny black table in front of us. She continues to look around in amazement.
“When do I become one with you?” she asks.
“You already have,” I answer.
“What?” she asks.
“The kiss of death is the kindest way of dying. I use it very infrequently. Pretty much never,” I say.
She looks concerned and then eyes me again.
“Does this mean I can be anything?” she asks.
“Give it a try,” I say.
“I want to be a bat,” she says.
Quickly, without effort, she turns into a bat, flying around the room, giggling a human voice, even in her new form. Suddenly, in just one blink, a woman stands before me. She is tall, blond and beautiful, wearing a short, leather skirt and shirt to match.
“How do you like it?” she asks.
“I like the original you better, but you will look good no matter what you do,” I say.
She turns into a seal.
I appreciate her humor. She makes me laugh.
She makes seal noises and then turns into a tree, shaking the leaves.
“Care for an apple?” she asks.
I laugh uncontrollably.
Finally, she goes back to her original form, sitting next to me on the couch.
“Boy, that tires you out,” she sighs, “So what’s next?”
I know what I’m thinking but I decide to be a gentleman for now.
“We can watch a movie,” I say.
I’m prepared to show off all the perks of this new life before I show her the biggest one. Her eyes widen.
“We can do that here?” she asks.
“Why not?” I ask, “We can do anything, of course, I prefer horror movies, if that’s ok.”
“I like romances but we can compromise,” she says.
I almost snarl, but I stop myself. A wide-screen television appears before us with a horror movie already starting. Suddenly it changes to a romance.
I look at her, stunned. She smiles that charming look. I turn away. The horror flick comes on again. Five minutes later it is a romance.
“What did I get myself into?” I wonder.
She smiles again, as we flick the channel back and forth until finally I shut it off.
Women are definitely the more wicked breed and now, I have to spend the rest of eternity trying not to be selfish and compromising with a woman. I am an intransigent being. Do you know how long eternity really is? An eternity of compromise. Oh, what greater hell is there than that?
Originated December 16, 2005
Wandering words of advice linger about...