Category Archives: demon

Well, well

So, you guys like how Spider’s done on here? I’m kinda happy with it myself.
Yep, it’s me, Res. I’m back.
Where’ve I been? Well, that’s the million dollar question isn’t it? And, despite risking getting your panties all into a twist, I’m not really into talking about it right now. Let’s just suffice it to say I’ve been places, seen things, and done things, none of which I’m very proud of right now. And I’m pretty fucking happy to be home.
Yeah. Home. 
Who’d’ve thought I’d ever call Tyne my home? Not me, that’s for sure. God, I hate that word, not
Anyway, I’m back, and it looks like I’m sticking around. It also looks like I might be getting some company, but I’ll leave that for later, too.
Mom and I are still on the outs, but, that’s pretty much daily life for Res, so I guess I’d just better get used to it, huh?
Thanks to all you guys who stuck around when I was…uh, busy. And thanks most of all to Spider. Looking back at your posts, man, I’m thinking you were close to being certifiable. But, that you were apeshit like that over me and my whereabouts… Well, thanks.
And to the rest of you out there, stay put; the bitch is back.
Oh yeah, and that Avery chick wrote a book about me.  Seems it’s for sale as of now in the Kindle store on Amazon (whatever that is).  She says there are some other versions coming soon, iBookstore and Barnes and something-or-other.  I dunno how she wrote so fast.  Almost like she knew before I did what was going to happen to me.  Oh well, I’ve seen weirder things.  So go buy it.

RESONANCE for Kindle

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The Worst Day of the Year — and an Announcement

Spider, here.
It’s started.  Already.  I’m gettin’ the calls for St. Patrick’s Day ink requests and I’ll be the only one workin’.  Man, I hate that day. Now, don’t go thinking I got a problem with the Irish, or those that think they’re Irish, or those that wish they could think they’re Irish. I don’t. I just don’t wanna have to do any fuckin’ four leaf clovers.
I swear, as soon as New Years is over, every fucker who wants a tat suddenly decides he’s fuckin’ Irish.  The closer to March 17, the more likely it is the dude’ll be too pissed to see straight, demanding I give ’em a shamrock on the balls or somethin’. Try tellin’ a drunk fuck you can’t do his ink because his blood’s thin and he’ll bleed all over the fuckin’ floor. The next thing you know, you’re rollin’ on the tiles as the dickhead screams about you denyin’ his heritage. Then, there’s blood on the floor anyways. And it sure as shit ain’t mine. Still don’t make it any more fun to clean up.
I tried switchin’ shifts early this year, but Trey’s already planned to be drunk in anticipation of sitting his black ass down and celebrating his “Irish” heritage proper, and my boss is the one who handed me the shit gig in the first place. So it’s gonna be me and the piercing chick (whatever her name is, piercing chick #7, I guess; they come and go like there’s a revolvin’ door) and I don’t think she’s gonna be much help.
I’m gonna tell ’em they gotta take a breathalyzer test by law and the machine’s broke.
I’m gonna lock the fucking door and make ’em show me what they want before I let ’em in. 
I’m gonna tell ’em I’m out of green ink. 
Fuck it. I’m gonna do the four leaf clovers. I’m just gonna charge ’em triple. They’ll all be too wasted to notice.
So, call to check my schedule.  I’ll give you a discount if you don’t want nothin’ Irish (no shamrocks, no Celtic, druid or pagan crap, no leprechauns, not even one of those ugly ass setter dogs). 
If want any of the above, you’d best be ready to pay, and feel some pain.
Now that I’ve got y’all all worked up, Avery wanted me to tell y’all that she’s got some book or nother coming out on Thursday.  Tells me it’s got some familiar people in it, whatever that means.  I don’t read much, but I guess y’all might.  So, there ya go.  I told ya about it.  You’ve been given official notice, so don’t let her give me shit about it, later.

Religion’s Dead–Or on Walkabout

Spider, here.
When I was a kid, I thought a monster was under my bed. I could hear him hissin’ and growlin’ under there. My ma told me it was the radiator and stop being such a retard. Didn’t convince me, tho. I knew. It was down there, waitin’. The next time it started hissin’, I yelled again. This time my ma came in with a baseball bat. She told me to shut up ’cause she was busy and if the thing came creepin’ up the foot of my bed like i said it was, to hit it in the damn head. I held that chunk of wood and knew there wouldn’t be any more noises after that. Just like I believed in the monster, I believed in that bat.
Later on, when birdie powder and bad boyfriends made my ma more likely to hit me with a bat than gimme one, my beliefs still were about that bat. It was solid. It would deliver pain–and sometimes save me from it. I did some things with that bat most of you’d turn away from. I did some things all of you would say I’m a bad person for. If I am or not, well, that’s not part of this, so I ain’t gonna get into it. It’d end up a big circle of a talk with no answer at the end, anyways. Might as well leave it.
In high school, right about when that bat started gettin’ me into too much shit, I found something else to believe in. A new student from Bal’more named Resonance. She looked to me like this surly girl who’d just as much kick you in the teeth as say somethin’, but the funny thing ’bout her was she liked to pretend she was invisible most of the time. She’d slink around the halls, duckin’ past whatever was in her way, makin’ sure she didn’t have to look at no one. But, every once in a while, someone would do somethin’ she couldn’t overlook and she’d pop out of the shadows and it was all fangs and fury for a good thirty seconds. Then, she’d disappear again.
She still likes to think I didn’t see her, didn’t notice her until she noticed me. That ain’t the truth. I saw her. I watched her, waited to see if she’d ever drop the invisible shit and just be, you know? Then I pulled some shit in class one day and she just–exploded. Not in a crazy, gun-toting, school-burning way, or anythin’. You know that Wizard of Oz movie, where everything is black and white, and then the chick in the house lands and, boom, it’s all color? That’s what it was. She turned to color. And everthin’ around her did the same.
After that, I didn’t need that bat. Life was alive ’cause she was. The walls were colored for her. Music was there so she could pull me into the pit and thrash around like we were forged from anger itself. The air was there just so her mouth could go on lettin’ out whatever the fuck it was she felt like sayin’. 
When the stepdad from hell started layin’ in on me, she’d tell me it’d be okay someday soon. And it was like I finally understood those people who stuffed themselves into their good clothes to pack the churches on Sunday. She spoke. I believed. She became my church. My religion. 
Now the church is empty. And I can’t go back. That bat’s just a hunk of wood. Even that monster can’t get ahold of me, now. My beliefs changed and all that lived before she walked in on my life has washed down the drain like dirty water. I’m clean. Born again. I embraced the color and then the world went all gray again. I saw the light, then the light upped and split.
Shit.

Did you say you like the occult?


There’s been a lot of buzz on the blogs I frequent about writers helping — or, more specifically, not helping — one another. I’ve harbored the same concern for quite a while, and I’ve done my fair share of complaining. After deep consideration and a brief consult with the genius of Benjamin Hoff (The Tao of Pooh) and his insight into the “Confusionist, Desiccated Scholar,” I’ve decided to stop worrying about those who wish to horde information as if it were the rightful property of only a select few and move on. In short, I’m shutting up and putting up.

Below is a list of sites I encountered during my research into occult and magical studies for this novel. There used to be more, but a good number of the links have drifted into oblivion since I began this collection over three years ago. Others were lost with a hard drive crash last summer.

I hope one or more of them will help one or more of you find that extra something to curl the toes of your readers. To those of you who don’t write fantasy, horror or any other genre in the paranormal/toe-curling family, I’m sorry I don’t have anything for you, other than a list of fascinating reads that just might make you want to come over to the dark side.

*****************

University of Virginia’s Religious Movement Project — Covers topics on religions across the United States, with an interesting section on cults.

About.com’s Book of Shadows — Although About is a pretty common site, I’ve included this direct link to basic principles of Wicca that’s broken down into smaller sections on things like altar appearance and symbols.

National Occult Research Association — Dark Magic, paganism… Something for everyone.

Archives of Western Esoterica — The mother of all occult sites! All the archaic magical knowledge you can handle. Make sure you check out the Key of Solomon and the Lemegeton (the Lesser Key).

The Catholic Encyclopedia on Demonology — About demons, by the Catholic Church

Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance — Contains a good overview of many different beliefs, including Wicca and Vodun.

Waning Moon — Information on the Dark Pagan path. The bulk of the information on this site seems to be missing right now, but the link page gives a good selection of links to other sites (a few of which I’ve mentioned here).

Hermetic Fellowship’s Virtual Library — More esoteric documents.

The Alchemy Website — All things alchemical.

Monstrous.com — You guessed it, all things monster. I’m a fan of the demon section.

Sacred Texts Online — Bring your wading boots and lots of patience; it’s a huge site with a sea of religious info.

God Checker — Not sure if you’re dealing with Ninhursag or Inanna? Check!

The Serene Dragon — All things dragon.

Death and Dementia — I’ve only been to the paranormal anomalies section, so I can’t account for what you might find elsewhere on this site.

Ex Oblivion — The site’s owner has a collection of personal essays on a host of dark beliefs/practices.

Traditional Religion in Africa: The Voudon Phenomenon in Benin — Article by Barthelemy Zinzindhohoue.

DMOZ Open Directory Project — This link connects to their religion and spirituality directory.
Their Vodun
section is quite large.

Maryland Paranormal Research Society — Mostly pertains to Maryland stuff, but still an interesting site.

**************

Maybe next week we’ll talk books.


Flash Fiction







The Hell of Dying
Agony twitched Julia’s limbs in time to the rhythm the fire beat out inside her body. 
Life.  Death.  Life.  Death.  Life.  Death.
The Pilferers fretted their lancinating fingers so the needles sang like chimes, adding their restless anticipation to the tune searing through her.  Soon, they would have one more body to toss onto the putrefying mass at her side.  So many in that pile had once been her anchors to life.  Their absence burned her mind to pitch.
Julia pushed to her knees, screaming with the effort.  The Pilferers stabbed their fingers into the pulses of their throats and extracted more bilious blood.  Amber beads hissed from the tips.
The Hell of dying.  That was what the Pilferers delivered—the fear of the unknown, the grief of parting.  Their liquid dread incapacitated the most gifted Magi, turned their power to fire in their veins, rolled it through their wasted flesh to puddle on the dirt where the parasitic demons lapped it up like dogs.
Julia’s lips split in a mirthless grimace.  Everything she would have regretted lay piled in that stinking corner.  No loose ends.  No fears.  The needles plunged into her arms once again.  This time, her mounting power met the invasive liquid, and drove it back into the Pilferers’ hands. 
The cave overflowed with agonized screams as the Pilferers fought to banish the dull apathy she had gifted them.  They writhed on the floor, incapacitated and denied their crucial sustenance. 
They couldn’t hurt her, not now.  There was nothing left to do but see how well she could make them match the remains of her family and friends.
Julia retrieved her sawed-off shotgun, and went to work.


******


You Want to Know About Heroes?


I can shatter bone. With no more effort than it takes you to grab a pencil, I can pulverize your femur. With a flex of my quads I can leap to the top of your house, and with a swipe of my arm, I can topple it. As a child you gazed with longing at candy-colored comic books, wishing to be all that I already am.


They cry. All night. Voices in the dark, shouting, screaming, pleading. They scurry across the earth, unable or unwilling to pry themselves from the role of victim. “It’s too hard,” they say. “It’s too hard. Help me.”


I did, at first. To shut them up, to win myself a decent night’s sleep. I saved the first one. A sweet-bodied guy with shining chestnut hair and eyes to match. As I convinced his assailants they had chosen the wrong victim, he took in the carnage I wrought with those dark, wide eyes. After the electric terror faded, after the sting of being rescued by a chick had eased from them, I found those eyes were the same as the rest of him–sweet and grateful. I let him thank me. All night. He eventually dozed off, but the screams kept coming. I stared into the blackness and wished for them to stop. The sirens echoed their wails–one passing so near it started my boy out of his exhaustion. He rolled onto his side, blinked those stupid doe eyes at me and said, “Aren’t you going to help them?”


I got up fast, was out of there before the shape of my head had smoothed from the pillow. I left him lounging in bed, confident that now he was safe, his hero was going out to save the rest of the world.


I went and got a drink.


Then another.


Then another.


Behind me, some bastard at the pool table smacked his girlfriend in the face for sloshing his beer. I let him.


There were other times I felt more generous. Times when a rapist was found mangled and stuffed in a trash can. Times when a serial killer stopped killing and the cops thought they’d somehow lucked out and managed to jail him on unrelated charges. But for each of those times there were scores where I heard, and did nothing. Times when I just didn’t feel like getting involved.


I can still hear them. Despite the four window air conditioners I have running at full-tilt, despite the music I play so loud it throbs my eardrums and gives me vertigo, I can still hear them screaming for me. I turn up the volume, and pray for sleep.


So, what do you think of me now, kids? Do I fit inside your hard-lined squares of colorful ink? Do my words fill in the bubbles?


Am I your hero, or what?

*******


The Empress of the Fescue


This is how a snake feels, awaiting the first rays of light to banish the insidious chill. This is how it will always feel, cold and alone. This is why my desperation grows–as hers must have-wild.

I purchased her at an estate sale to stand sentry against the hordes of sticky-mouthed candy-grabbers trampling my front lawn. My beautiful, winged, snarling chimera, the Empress of the Fescue.

With a childish thrill I ventured under the harvest moon to admire her fearsome grimace. Only a flattened patch of turf remained to belie her post. There was no time to gape, or wonder. She came with full fury, a winged wrecking ball to the back. I toppled forward against the dew-dampened grass, gasping for air.

Masonry talons clicked against the sidewalk. I heaved onto my back. She was there under the halo of light, waiting for my gaze to register her carven jaws stretched wide with hunger. Panic jolted my bones and I scrabbled away, clawed hands and bare feet churning the earth in desperation.

The grass was slick. I was slow.

Her terrible weight prematurely expelled the last of my breaths. That gaping mouth sucked deep into my own. I struggled to stay inside, but there was nothing to hold onto, no anchor to cast.

I pushed myself up with shaking arms.

Not me.

She, wearing me.

I fit her like a well-made suit, and she smiled. She did a small dance of joy, cavorting out of view as she tried her new legs. My head could not turn to follow. Cast in a haze of gray, my world contracted to a narrow strip of grass, a patch of siding, and my living room window.

It aches, sitting here with my knees hunched around my chin. A spider has built a web in the crevice of my right ear. The grass is cold against my immovable hide and I spend the long dark wishing for the following day to come without rain or clouds so I might briefly remember warmth.

I catch snippets of her through the window, clips from a movie I will never see. She seems happy. And why shouldn’t she be? She has it all: my life, my husband, my flesh. And she has me, her Empress of the Fescue.



********


Problem Child

The creature stopped twitching, and immediately she wished she could take it back. She held her daddy’s hammer tightly in the palm of her shaking hand and stared at the mess that had not too long before been a head. The insides of her stomach twisted into a dozen tight balls of string. There was no taking this back. No putting life back into the small form.

She gazed at the ruined body in contemplation. It had been so small, so weak. When she had picked it up, the thing squawked and squealed in panic, but had been helpless to do anything more. Surely that meant something? Her young mind gnawed the problem, chewing it like tough meat. She gazed at the lifeless shell, and the bits of swirling emotions settled, locking in her mind as a much more logical, concrete outlook.

Because it had no chance against her, the creature deserved to fall under her control. With no means to defend its life, its death became hers to decide. She hefted her daddy’s hammer in her hand and felt a surging swell of dominance. The young monster gazed down at the rest of the tiny, scurrying humans, and smiled.


********

The Love of the Job

Like a mechanical mosquito the needle hammered into his flesh, drawing out slick smears of crimson, depositing various shades of gray in return.

Remember Nikky, this spot is mine.

Those had been the last words spoken to him by his grandfather, Sid “the Ink” Shepherd, as the dying old man patted the final bit of virgin skin on Nick’s motley arm. Now only the walls’ collection of flash stood as silent witness to the fulfillment of that promise, the memorialization of Nick’s mentor, despite the torturous regret it fostered.

The job was going horribly wrong.

Nick’s sweat-slicked right hand clung to the battered, duct taped armrest as his defiant left arm steadily worked his grandfather’s prized shader across his flesh. He could no more stop its progress than will the frenzied staccato of his heart to slow. The needle buzzed into his skin with hot, jabbing intensity. The newly injected ink swarmed through the dermis, breaking lines here, joining others there, willfully reshaping his chosen design to suit its own undisclosed end. Nick could do nothing but watch.

After hours of slow agony, the maniacal tension in Nick’s arm dispelled and the shader clattered to the floor. His stomach knotted with trepidation, Nick grabbed a handful of rough paper towels and wiped away the sanguine and ebony swirls. From its place in the center of his forearm, the grayscale visage of his grandfather stared sternly up at the collection of lewd cartoons pinned to the ceiling. Like a slow moving wave, the skin on Nick’s arm gathered and broke, folding over his grandfather’s eyes as dark, hooded lids. The tattoo gave a slow blink and then rolled its gaze down, sweeping back and forth, studying its new incarnation. Sweat ticked down Nick’s face as the eyes–those eyes wrought by his own hand–turned upwards to bore into him. With a careful stretch of its mouth, the tattoo gave Nick an admonitory scowl.

“Your shading is shit, boy.”


***********


The Walk of Shame

Liz eased onto her feet. The coverlet, which had wound its way around her foot sometime during the long night’s thrashings, trailed her like a train. She shook it off with impatience, more mindful of her body’s nagging soreness than the ridiculous irony of the image. 

He had left before she had awoken. The room was a shambles, his belongings scattered across the floor as if abandoned in hasty disgust. In the bright morning sunshine the electric surge that had filled Liz’s heart at the apex of their encounter seemed all but drained away. She felt small, weak and exposed.

“Oh. You’ve awakened.” Victor stood just inside the doorway, hair mussed, clothes disheveled. He avoided her eyes as he gestured to the far corner. “Your dress is over there.”

“Thank you,” was all she could manage. Liz picked up the soft black garment, puddled it on the floor at her feet and then stepped in, aware of the odd pull of tightened muscles across her back. She struggled with the sleeves for a few moments, wondering if he was watching, wondering if he was aware of the toll their riotous night had taken on her. If he knew, he made no attempt to assist her as she fumbled with the buttons. After a few moments of struggling she abandoned the top two, leaving a gaping V at the crest of her shoulders, followed by a series of odd bulges and gaps where she had incorrectly fastened the fabric. She turned back to Victor and forced a small smile. “Better?”

Victor’s eyes, hooded with guilt, shifted to the door. “I have work.”

Liz started to nod, but then shook her head. “No.”

“Excuse me?”

“I will not.” She stamped her foot. An aching throb traced up her leg. Was there anywhere on her body their transgressions had not touched? Liz caught the warning arch of his eyebrow, the downward tug of his mouth and altered her tone. “How can you act this way? After last night–?”

“I am busy, that’s all. I told you, I have work to do.”

“And you don’t have time enough to spare me a moment now that your conquest is complete? Have you checked me off of your list, yet?” He didn’t answer and Liz choked back the lump in her throat. “How can you be this way?”

“I am not being any way,” Victor said. He ran his hand through his hair, tousling it even further. “I do not have time for this.”

“And I have no inclination to let you leave without admitting last night was special. You… My body… Touched everywhere. Your hands traced the most intimate parts of me. Last night we connected as no others have. Admit that, and I will leave you alone.”

“Of course!” Victor shouted. “Of course it was intimate. I was there! I was! But it’s no longer last night. It is tomorrow.”

“I see.” Liz fought the tears that threatened to overspill. “It is tomorrow, and you have work to do.”

“Marvelous!  You’ve got it. That’s only what I have been telling you for the past five minutes.”

“Then do not let me keep you one second longer.”

He slid from the room like a scolded child, his shamed relief staining the air. Liz limped past the gurney to the window. The leaded panes mimicked the tracery of stitches across her face–the fine, careful lines Victor had sewn all over her body. He had made her. From castoff corpses to single being, he had made her, infused her with this life, and then tossed her aside. She pressed her forehead against the glass until it hurt, staring out at a world she would never enter, straining away from the world she would never leave. 

“You are a bastard, Victor,” she whispered. “Such a bastard.”

RESONANCE now available on Nook

Hey, it’s Res, again with more news from the Avery camp.  Seems the book about me is now available at Barnes and Noble’s Nook store.  Here’s the link she gave me to toss up here:

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Resonance/Avery-DeBow/e/2940012175632/?itm=1&USRI=resonance

She says Apple’s iBookstore is still pending, and she’s trying to get something together for Google so you Sony people can read it, too.

You know when you’re talking and have no idea what you’re saying?  Yeah, that’s what’s going on with me right now.  I’m writing this shit and can’t even tell you what it means. “Sony people,” “iBookstore”–it’s all just letters senselessly blurring together.  I’m not big on reading.  Well, I wasn’t until lately.  But, my foray back into the literary world didn’t quite cover the topics Avery seems to want me to spout off on here.  I don’t know jack about them.  

Of course, I could change that with one good look at a webpage or book on this junk.  Having–uh–skills–is pretty cool sometimes.  Other times, not so much, but I don’t feel like thinking about that right now.  My head would probably explode.

Right now, I’m just happy there’s enough left of me to still be me, you know?

No, you probably don’t.

If you read the damn book about me you would.

Yeah, that’s a hint.

Dontcha wanna know what I’ve been going on about these past couple months?