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brian-fatah-steele

For Lore Of A Fasting Earth

Posted on 2009.06.18 at 00:43
Tags: , , ,
 He leaned back in the chair and read the information floating before him once again to make sure.  After he had absorbed it a second time, he sighed and got to his feet.  The aria in the background played quietly, a subtle accent to his studies.  He closed his eyes and let the voice sway him for a moment, then moved towards the outer door.  After running his fingers across the grace pad, the panel slid open to grant him access.
 
As he took his first few steps outside, the nanotechs in his body came alive with purpose.  They secreted a thin liquid membrane through his pores that coated his body in a protective  environmental suit.  The bio-engineering in his lungs took over and he began to process the acrid gases that had long ago replaced oxygen.  It took a few moments for his eye design to reset, something he would have to have checked out when he found the time. 
 
Looking towards the heavens, he could make out the massive fusion engines that surrounded the ancient sun, keeping it burning long past its time.  Sol glowed a neon orange in the sky, powered by the same unnatural science that kept the Earth in its permanent rotation.
 
Glancing away from the dying orb, Nathan watched the skies for the coming invasion.
 
 - - - - - - - - - -
 
It had various names:  Earth, Terra Prime, Sol-3.  It was a sparsely populated planet with advanced technology, once a force to be reckoned with in the universe.  More millennia ago than many could remember, the Earthlings ruled much of the known Milky Way Galaxy.  Then, quizzically, they had pulled back.  Few of the other galactic races had been sadden by this turn of events. 
 
The Shirrian had been little more than primitives at the time.  Shirrius was a planet somewhat comparable to Earth, but with even more water at almost 80%.  They had been conquered and not even known it at the time, so behind in the interstellar game.  But they had continued, they had evolved.  Eventually, they had become recognizable force in space, using their immense fleet to overthrow nearby planets and advance themselves through the age old methods of theft and pillaging.
 
As they cut their way through the universe, they came to hear of the legends of the Earth.  Myths of an ancient and far more advanced race that had once held the entire galaxy under its control.  Rumors of powers and technology, even by today's standards, were still beyond anything the Shirrians had ever seen.  A race of people who had simply quit one day.
 
Such a promise of treasures was like a dream to the leaders of the Shirrians.
 
And so an armada of the finest Shirrian warships made their way across the galaxy, searching out for the quadrant that held the elusive planet Earth.  There was much excitement along the way amongst the crews of these ships, for they were they ones who would be bringing untold riches and ultimate glory to the growing empire.  So focused on their mission, so concentrated upon the goal of Earth, the Shirrians flew past countless systems and planets that would have otherwise been perfect for their usual conquest.  No, a greater prize laid in wait at the end.
 
 - - - - - - - - - -
 
Nathan strolled down the metal path towards a greenhouse-like structure.  He ran a finger over the grace pad and stepped in.  The building was narrow but incredibly long, alit from an unseen source.  Vapor clouds amassed around the flora from various worlds and eras, the plants in a constant state of perfection.  Nathan’s queued a telepathic signal in his head and waited. 
 
A couple of minutes later, a snail-like creature came slithering up between an aisle.  It bowed its head in a manner of formal greeting and Nathan made a quick series of hand gestures at the other individual.  The snail turned a bright shade of pink, nodded twice quickly, and hurried off.
 
Nathan had one more stop to make before the invasion fleet arrived.  He made his way over to a teleportation node as the greenhouse began its slow decent underground behind him.  Stepping in front of the giant, glowing silver ball, Nathan spoke the word of his destination and felt the cold lightning ripple off the orb and strike him.
 
 - - - - - - - - - - -
 
The Shirrian were mammals like the humans of Earth.  Their skin tended towards more of pale tones, and they had hair that ranged in shades from yellow to blue to green.  Their facial structuring was relatively different as was the elongated length of their limb, but the resemblance between the two races was quite remarkable all things considered. 
 
And then there was their culture.  The people of Shirrius might have moved slower thanks to all that extra water holding them back, but the society had evolved in almost the same manner as their distant cousins.  The art, the faith, the wars, the inventions, the philosophy... it was all so similar. 
 
Of course, the Shirrians didn’t know any of this.  They simply wanted power; to hold on to what they already had, and to gain more.  Another wonderful “Human” trait.  No, the Shirrians blasted across the cosmos, gaining increasingly closer to their destination, none the wiser of what truly awaited them.
 
But those on Earth knew...
 
 - - - - - - - - - - -
 
Reengineering his lungs to meet the requirements, Nathan walked into the giant pool of shimmering liquid.  The nanotechs in his body built him a suit for the living water so not to contaminate it.  Once emerged, he waited.  Eventually, a form morphed before him of a woman much in the same shape of himself.  He allowed his sensations to emanate, his feelings to swim out into the pool.  The woman made of the same liquid he was submerged in immediately understood.  She communicated back her desires to help, but Nathan explain his position.  The woman nodded and dissipated.
 
Stepping out from the pool, every drop of the liquid rolled back into the pool, filling in.  Nathan looked to sky, knowing he didn’t have much time.  The Shirrians would be here shortly.  And once they got here, there would be so much work to do...
 
 - - - - - - - - - -
 
The admiral of Shirrian armada had left his command chair and wandered up to the ship’s view screen with his officers, just as almost every other ship’s leader was doing.  They were just passing the planet the Earthlings called Mars, and the intell on their sun Sol was coming in.  They were staring at the fusion engines, staring at the marvels of technology so advanced it seemed almost magical.  Reports were coming in; this sun was billions of years past going out.  These Earthling had learned how to not only keep it lit, but... the third planet, Earth itself, was on an artificial rotation now.
 
Some of the Shirrian leaders began to question the move against Earth.  These beings obviously had technology so far beyond them that they knew they were approaching.  Must not they have weapons of a massive caliber as well?  How to proceed against such an advanced race? 
 
More intel came in.  The planet was barely inhabited.  Only about one million living denizens on the entire Earth.  There seemed to vast amounts of technological goods and structures, but nothing that registered as a weapon.  Perhaps... perhaps the Earthlings had become pacifists and now relied on their own past legends to keep aggressors at bay? 
 
What to do admiral?  Circle the planet’s atmosphere.
 
 - - - - - - - - - -
 
Nathan calculated every move the Shirrian’s made on a personal computing apparatus that was projected from his palm.  He sighed as they maneuvered their ships into the same pattern as almost every race had done before.  Nathan did some quick math and deduced there was a little less than four a half million Shirrian individuals floating in the armada above.
 
Perhaps that would keep them satisfied for a while.
 
As Nathan thought that, another thought entered his head; one that told him it was time.  Nathan closed his eyes and released the ghost button that activated all of the teleportation nodes in remote function.  He could hear the cold lightning crackle from a few feet away.
 
 - - - - - - - - - -
 
Throughout the entire fleet, every single living member of the Shirrian race saw a silver flash and felt a crackling cold.  Then they all found themselves on the surface of the planet Earth.
 
 - - - - - - - - - -
 
The Shirrian admiral and his officers stood there in confusion.  They rarely carried weapons upon their own person while on deck within the ship, and now... now they stood facing what must be an Earthling.  It was approximately the same height as them, but had no visible hair of any kind.  It was thin, with large, dark eyes and a light, brownish skin.  The bulge between its legs led the shocked Shirrians to assume it was male, but it was covered in a thin metallic sheen to its neck line and wrists, its feet wrapped in some kind of small strands of metal. 
 
The Earthling’s palm was up, projecting a hologram of the planet with the surrounding armada.  Suddenly it vanished, and the human said something.  It said something again, and then finally, in Shirrian language, it said “Hello.”
 
“What... what is the meaning of this?” roared the admiral.
 
“You were attempting to invade us to steal our technology to advance your own cause.  You were allowed to proceed as far as you did... for a reason,” said Nathan.
 
“So you’ve somehow transported us from our ships, “ said one of the officers.  “We have other leaders among the other craft of the armada that...”
 
“No,” said Nathan.  “All of the Shirrian have been teleported to the surface of Earth.”
 
The admiral laughed.  “Fool, there are four times more of us than there are Earthlings!  Even without weapons, we will shortly take this planet!”
 
“Four million times,” sighed Nathan.
 
“What?”
 
“Four million times more Shirrian than Earthlings.  I am the only Earthling left upon this planet, and I was engineered to exist.  All the other life signs you detected were various other aliens.”
 
The Shirrians merely stood there shocked for a moment. 
 
Finally, one said, “But where...”
 
‘This planet is a museum, well... maybe more like a zoo in some cases.  Unfortunately, it tends to get invaded by races like you.  In cases like that...” Nathan droned off and brought his palm up again.
 
The images that it showed were horrific.  Shirrians all over the planet were being slaughtered by an unseen force, torn apart and their very life sucked from their bodies until dried husks were cast aside, broken and withered.  The images flashed, rotating from one location to another, one gruesome scene replacing the next.
 
“What’s happening!” screamed the Shirrian admiral.  “What’s attacking my people!”
 
“The true Earthlings,” replied Nathan.  “They long ago found that they could transcend the physical form.  However they are rooted in essence to Earth.  While they can travel the cosmos now, free of such concerns of starships or even bodies, they need to return here every now and again to... feed.”
 
The Shirrian with Nathan watch in horror as four and a half million of their people were systematically exterminated.
 
“All the aliens on this planet are the remnants of invading races.  A few are kept as specimens and to do some of the necessary work about the planet, while the rest...” Nathan trailed off for a moment.
 
“They allowed you to think you were invading,” said the last human on Earth, “Because they were hungry.”
 
 

 


brian-fatah-steele

The Intruder

Posted on 2009.06.18 at 00:40
Tags: , ,
 Pagnotti climbed the few wooden steps and turned back to look at the beach before entering.  They had made a good choice coming here to St. Croix, it was the best find yet.  And he couldn’t have wished for a better atmosphere.  Sun, sand and surf; just the opposite of the dreary University halls back home. 
 
He had been on break and had taken a leisurely stroll down the beach, enjoying all the sights the island had to offer.  The beautiful dark-skinned inhabitants and their easy going manners were infectious, as was the island rum he had been consuming at a quickening pace.  Wandering past a group of young students on holiday from the Netherlands, he had paused to listen to their wonderful speaking voices.  Further down the beach, he had stopped at a small ocean side bar for a drink and a serving of the delicious chicken curry that he had grown fond of.
 
Now back at the house he and his colleagues were renting, he smiled sadly.  They had already been here three weeks and soon their allotted time away would be up.  Called back to show results, they would have to return to Miskatonic and report.  It wasn’t that they had nothing to show for their time here, quite the opposite.  Pagnotti, however, simply wished he could remain forever in this paradise instead.
 
Stepping into the small house, he was greeted by a flurry of activity.  Mason was running back and forth between two computers and Sansgaard was shouting at Brown as the young doctor tried to stick pins in a large map.  Fullton was nowhere to be seen, so that meant he was probably in the bathroom.
 
“Where have you been?” shouted Sansgaard at Pagnotti, his anger now turned toward the newcomer.
 
“I was on break, I walked down the beach.  Why, what’s happened?”
 
“Fucking hell, you better not have been getting wasted on their Caribbean rot-gut again or...”
 
“Calm down,” said Pagnotti.  “What’s going on?”
 
“She moved,” said Mason from one of the computer terminals.
 
“Wait, what?  ‘She?’  She or the...” tried Pagnotti.
 
Brown pulled away from the map, clearly side-stepping Sansgaard and tying up her long, curly brown hair.  She walked over to her small desk and picked up a tee shirt that was lying across the back of the chair and threw it at Pagnotti.  He caught it as he realized in was the one she had been wearing earlier.  It was wet.
 
“She moved,” said Brown.  “She sat up... quickly.”
 
“My god.  Is the subject still...”
 
“It seems fine,” said Mason.  “It started communicating right after she went back down into the water.”
 
“Did you have to force her, or did she go back down herself?”
 
“She went down herself, very slowly,” answered Brown. “But by that point we were all crammed in the room.”
 
“All but you,” sneered Sansgaard.
 
“Oh, shut the fuck up Erik.  I assume Fullton’s in the bathroom now?”
 
Brown nodded as Sansgaard fumed and turned to the map.  Pagnotti began walking to the other end of the house, a smile playing on his lips at Sansgaard’s aggravation.  Mason called his name out behind him.
 
“Don’t you want to know what it said?”
 
“I’ll ask Fullton,” replied Pagnotti as he made his way down the hall.
 
The house was relatively large, which suited the scholars.  Meant for a family gathering or a party of students, it had four bedrooms and two baths.  The two bathrooms had been essential.  Rarely were anymore than two of the team members asleep at one time, so the bedroom number didn’t so much matter, but that bathroom situation... that had been a necessity.
 
Pagnotti rounded the corner and could see Dr. Anthony Fullton sitting on the top toilet seat, fiddling with a recording device.  His gray hair and short-cropped beard marked him as the oldest of the Miskatonic University team, the field leader in this little island adventure.  For him it was a last chance, but a chance of a lifetime. 
 
Pagnotti leaned against the open door frame and said, “I heard I missed some excitement.”
 
Fullton smiled.  “I’m sure Erik told you all about it.”
 
“I wouldn’t let him,” replied Pagnotti.  “What really occured?”
 
“She sat up.”
 
“Brown told me that much.”
 
“She was sitting in here, it was her duty turn,” said Fullton, “When the host simply, suddenly shot up out of the water.  Sat straight up, rigid as a board.  Soaked poor Emily and probably scared her half to death.  It was her scream that alerted us.”
 
“And then she just slowly returned to the position?” asked Pagnotti.
 
“Yes.  She was already moving back by the time we arrived.  It took, perhaps, all of a full two minutes for her to resume a completely submerged and settled form.”
 
“And the Fortian Creature is fine?”
 
“It spoke moments after she became immobile again.”
 
Pagnotti leaned across the bathroom, over Fullton and peered into the tub. 
 
Inside was a young woman, completely naked and lying on her side in a fetal position.  Somewhere in her early twenties, she had long dark hair and a slender form.  She had been quite beautiful once, with large dark brown eyes that now stared off under the water.  On the side of her head and just barely cresting out of the top of the bathtub’s water level, it sat attached to her skull, slightly draping over her face.  It looked almost squid-like, but more solid, more durable.  Eight tentacles laid splayed about her head, the suckers having woven themselves into her flesh and a small, bulbous bag of organs and fluid rested on her neck.  It pulsed with life, with purpose.  Right above the bag, right in the center of the tentacles, there was an orifice of types.
 
And it was from this orifice that the creature spoke.
 
“I thought we all agreed that the host was no longer a functioning organism,” said Pagnotti.
 
“We did, and I still stand by that,” said Fullton.  “I think the creature was simply exercising base electrical activity and that was a result.”
 
“Seems a bit... controlled.”
 
Fullton looked at the bathtub with concern.  “I know.”
 
“Well, what did it say?”
 
“Something along the lines of, ‘The Seas Will Gather The Slaves To Make Amends For Its Culling Time,’ I believe.”
 
“Still in a mix of broken French and ancient Sumerian?” asked Pagnotti.
 
“Hence the ‘I believe’ part.”
 
“Well, Sansgaard is a bastard, but he’s a damn fine linguist.  He’ll figure it out.”
 
“Careful, it sounds like you might be respecting him,” laughed Fullton.  “Could you watch this while I go use the other bathroom?  I could use a moment with my pipe as well.”
 
“Go have your piss and your smoke, old man,” said Pagnotti with a smile.
 
The two doctors exchanged places, and Fullton left.  Pagnotti placed the recorder on the makeshift table across the sink and stared into the tub.  The Miskatonic Fortian Science branch had been searching for something this definite now for decades.  Not since their rise back in the early 1920’s had a find like this ever come about.  It was an elite group of some of the most brilliant doctors and researchers on the planet; however, many came from fields that were too bizarre or obscure to find real challenges anywhere else.  Miskatonic sent them on excursion into the occult and the mysterious, sent them to find answers.
 
So often, they came back with nothing.
 
When reports came in across their network of a young tourist who had been stricken with some kind of unknown parasite down in the Caribbean, Miskatonic sent in a team.  Dr. Anthony Fullton was a Microbiologist, Dr. Emily Brown a Speculative Disease Specialist.  Gregory Mason tagged along as Medical Data, and Daniel Pagnotti slid in at the last minute as their Fortian Zoologist.  Pagnotti had been the one who had suggested submerging the host in salt water after Brown had muscled her way through the St. Croix hospital staff.  The hospital had been more than happy to see the coma patient and her freakish little friend go.
 
Once they had obtained the house and filled the tub with salt water, they had placed the girl along with her attachment into it.  Almost immediately, the creature had begun to speak.  Both Brown and Fullton had recognized some of the French, but realized that either they weren’t fluent enough or that it was speaking in multiple languages.  Sansgaard arrived two days later.
 
“Where’s Fullton?” came a voice from behind Pagnotti.
 
He turned to see Sansgaard standing there frowning.
 
“He went to the bathroom upstairs, why?”
 
“I don’t answer to you,” snapped the linguist.
 
“What IS your problem?” asked Pagnotti, genuinely confused.
 
Sansgaard rolled his eyes and stormed off.  Pagnotti shook his head and turned back to the tub.  All of the statements from the creature had been translated as a mixed of French, the young woman’s native tongue, and a form of ancient Sumerian.  They were all usually single sentences, dire warnings of a kind.  They all talked about the seemingly end of humanity and the rise of the seas.  Some kind of broken treaty and the return of elder ones.  The department heads back at the University all had seemed very interested in this.
 
Fullton came back and leaned against the door frame much as Pagnotti had done. 
 
“Any change?” he asked.
 
“Nope,” said Pagnotti.  “Sansgaard is looking for you.  He’s in a pissy mood.”
 
“He’s been increasingly so,” said Fullton.  “And he has a particular distaste for you.”
 
“I’ve noticed.”
 
“Have you eaten yet?”
 
“Yeah,” replied Pagnotti.  “I got a curry on my break.”
 
“Damn.  I was going to send you to get one for me if you were hungry, too.”
 
“Hell, I’ll go get you one.  I’ll pick up one for everybody.  Besides, it’ll piss off Sansgaard to know I left again.”
 
Fullton laughed as they traded spots once more.  Pagnotti slipped down the hallway, almost wishing for a confrontation with the linguist.  Back in the living room, he found only Brown and Mason at work.  He told them of his plan, of which they both thanked him for greatly.  Pagnotti made it through the front door without incident.
 
He took his time walking down the beach, enjoying the feeling of the warm breeze.  Night was just beginning to fall and the lights of the town glowed orange and yellow close by, a distinct opposite to the gorgeous shades of darkening blue in the sky.  Pagnotti couldn’t understand how Sansgaard could be so miserable in a place like this.  The stars started to erupt in the heavens above, twinkling in a majestic way that they never could back home.  He could hear faint singing off in the distance and he smiled.
 
Finally at the small ocean side bar, he ordered five medium curries to go and had them bag up the meals.  While he waited, he ordered a small drink, more of that “Caribbean rot-gut.”  As Pagnotti sipped on his island rum, he noticed an old man, blacker than he had ever seen any other human, staring at him.  Pagnotti smiled at the man and titled his drink in the elder’s direction.  A few minutes later, the curries were delivered and Pagnotti made to leave.
 
He was just about to step out of the light of the bar when the old man grabbed his arm.
 
“You an intruder here, boy.  An’ it’s gonna take you,” he said grimly.
 
“Excuse me?”
 
“The waters, it don’ like yo’ kind,” he replied, getting agitated.
 
Pagnotti pulled away from the old man as the bartender started yelling.
 
“Papa Lucia, you leave that nice doctor alone now.  You get on outta here, Sir.  Pay no mind to Papa Lucia.”
 
Pagnotti nodded and made his way off down the beach, glancing behind him only once to see the old man shaking his head, then hobbling back to his table and bottle of rum.
 
The Zoologist bit his lip, his thoughts running dark.  He tried to banish them, to let the warm Caribbean air blow them from his mind but they stayed rooted as firmly as the creature did to the poor French girl’s skull.  What exactly were they dealing with back at the house?  So far, none of them had really wanted to theorize on the ramifications of what the creature was saying.  They were scientists, not theologians, and they had all been very quick to dismiss anything outside their little realms of expertise.
 
All the scientists, except for Sansgaard, thought Pagnotti as he stepped through the front door of the house.
 
As he thought this and stepped in, he had only moments to see the horrific scene displayed before him before pain exploded in the back of his head.  He dropped the bag of food and fell to his knees, a hand coming up to the back of his skull defensively.  That had merely opened his ribs for a swift kick, sending him sprawling next to one of Mason’s computer terminals.
 
Pagnotti felt wetness on his arm and, through the dazed pain, he lifted it to see it covered in blood.  Mason’s blood.  Mason lay back in his computer chair, his throat slit wide open and red draining down his front.  It had splattered all of the terminals and began to pool on the floor.  Across the room, Brown sat on the couch, her limbs dangling awkwardly about in death, her throat even more viciously slashed open.
 
A shadow fell across Pagnotti.
 
“I want to kill you.  I want to kill you for my Lord, but it desires you,” said Sansgaard.
 
“Sansgaard... Erik, what have you...”
 
“Be silent,” he said getting down next to Pagnotti and placing a large kitchen knife at the Zoologist’s throat. “Be silent and listen.”
 
“Listen to wha...”
 
Sansgaard punched Pagnotti in the face with his free hand then pointed towards the hallway.  She sauntered in, almost gracefully, naked and dripping with salt water.  Her eyes were blank, staring like the dead.  In her hands she carried the creature, only a few blemishes to mark where it had attached itself to her.
 
She spoke, not as a young French tourist, but as the creature, the strange words now tumbling from her lips.
 
“And The True Kings Reside In The Deep,” translated Sansgaard. “The Children Rise To Vanquish Those Who Would Intrude.”
 
“Erik...” tried Pagnotti as the girl knelt down beside him.
 
“It has already laid its first egg in her,” said Sansgaard with a smile.  “Now you’ll be the next.”
 
Pagnotti sought to struggle, but Sansgaard brought the knife up to face, cutting him in a shallow motion.  He gestured with the blade towards Pagnotti’s throat, and the Zoologist fell back.  Teeth clenched, his muscles grew taught as what used to be the French girl drew near with the creature.  At the last moment, his eyes shot over and he saw the fangs of the underside mouth undulating in need, and Pagnotti screamed.
 
And then, Pagnotti knew nothing but the ocean...
 
 
 
 

 



brian-fatah-steele

Hooray For Humans

Posted on 2009.06.18 at 00:36
Tags: , ,
 Arianna stood in front of the mirror and adjusted her red bodice.  It hugged her small cleavage perfectly, giving her an added perkiness and an even smaller waist than she already had.  At barely five foot tall, her long black gown hid the four inch heels that granted her a slight height advantage.  So many thought of her as just a child and she appreciated tonight’s opportunity.
 
Strolling causally into the dining hall, the great room erupted into whispers.  There were not a few heads that turned her way, many of them with eyes wide.  Her long black hair had been swept up into curls that adorned the top of her head in a crown, two ringlets hanging down  framing her face.  Taking care to appear unaffected by the gossip all around her, she glided across the floor and retrieved a chalice from one of the severs.
 
“Arianna,” came a low voice from behind her.
 
She turned to see her childhood playmate, Prince Nikoli, standing there.  He had grown into quite a handsome young gentleman, yet he kept his hair long and free, his sideburns reaching down his face.  Not from the current style of the court, but Arianna found it charming in its decadence.
 
“Nikoli, a far cry from our days running amok in the fields behind your uncle’s summer home, isn’t it?”
 
“Yes, and infinitely more boring,” he replied, smiling.
 
“At least you’ve grown since those days.  I’ve stayed about the same size,” she giggled.
 
“You may be petite, my dear,” said Nikoli, “But you are still a Countess.  I suppose you don’t get to hunt much any longer?”
 
“Not exactly proper for a young lady of my status,” growled Arianna sarcastically.  “I miss it terribly.”
 
“How these fools cling to the old ways,” sighed Nikoli, watching as a number of various dignitaries came scurrying up to them.
 
Arianna and Nikoli played their respectable parts for about an hour, greeting a myriad of individuals.  She had thought this event would be something special, something exciting.  It was not.  Although almost everyone was treating her like a formal young woman of court, it was all rather dry and ridiculous.  Only Nikoli’s scathing comments that usually went over the heads of his victims, (and threatened to break her into torrents of laughter) kept her from yawning.
 
Finally, Nikoli turned to her and said, “That’s it, I’m leaving.”
 
“Don’t leave me here!” Arianna hissed in his ear.
 
Nikoli turned and regarded her with a sly smile for a moment, a strange gleam in his eye.
 
“I have three in a cage outside that I brought with me,” he said in a conversational tone.
 
Arianna gasped.  “You do not!”
 
“Of course I do.  I knew I would need some kind of enjoyment after this idiotic affair,” he said while motioning to his squire.
 
“But... but about the dinner?  What about...”
 
“Dinner?” he asked, his eyes turning red as he began walking backwards out of the hall.
 
Arianna finally let the laughter out she had been holding in.  She ran her tongue across her growing canine teeth, allowing various shocked glances from those assembled as her ears grew long and furry.   Her gown shifted from her emerging tail as she sauntered across to take Nikoli’s outstretched hand.
 
“Let’s go hunt,” said Arianna.
 
 
 
 

 


brian-fatah-steele

Such Secrets

Posted on 2009.06.18 at 00:32
Tags: , ,
 The winter wind roared outside Jacobson’s car like a mad television's white noise.  Even at his reduced speed, visibility was virtually nonexistent and the duty of the wiper blades were pitifully inadequate at best.  That was the thing about Ohio, if you didn’t like the weather... wait a few minutes.  Jacobson was hoping those few minutes would soon be up.
 
He thought back to the afternoon with Virginia, his ex-wife.  They had discussed restructuring Jacobson’s visitation right’s with his daughter, Alicia.  What had started out as a civil meeting had quickly escalated into the tired out routine of veiled threats and backhanded innuendoes.  He had left with little accomplished, his return drive from his ex-wife’s retreat to the boondocks made even less pleasant by the sudden blizzard.
 
Still aggravated, he took his eyes off the road just long enough to try and crank up the heater a bit farther.  Long enough to miss the massive form that appeared before his lights.  Long enough, so that when Jacobson looked up, he was almost upon it.
 
Swerving, he spun the car as he slammed onto the brakes, his car sliding hard into a snow filled ditch on the side of the county state route.  Jacobson sat absolutely still for a moment.  Then, once he realized he was fine, the anger erupted inside him.  It was the same anger that had cost him his marriage, but he would never acknowledge that.  All Jacobson knew at this moment was that some fool had wandered out in a snow storm, into the road and caused him to have an accident.  Jacobson flung open his door and climbed out, unconcerned about the possibilities.
 
He had not got a good look at the person who had caused him to wreck, not really seen the individual standing in the blizzard with arms outstretched.  Jacobson did now.  He did now, and the anger that had fueled his movements chilled as surely as the air that surrounded him.
 
“Ah, such rage,” Jacobson heard it speak. “Such rage makes me feel alive.”
 
Jacobson stood there in the biting wind, the snow still obscuring the most of his view.  For that he was grateful.  For that, he thanked God.
 
“God?  Oh, I could tell you tales of the heavens above and the depths below.”
 
Stammering something incoherent, Jacobson began to take a step back.  This was not a man.  It was too large, too dark, too... something else.  Some word that the English language didn’t have, that no human had been tainted enough to think up.  With a single step back, that before him took two forward. 
 
Jacobson felt his bowels release.
 
“Let me tell you about that which you will understand.  About atrocities, desecrations and other wonders.  Let me whisper secrets to you about the what lies in the cold wind.”
 
Before Jacobson could move, before he could think...
 
... and such secrets they were.