Shadows dancing across the ceiling in the half light were keeping me entertained yet again as they had over many years. The images forming into a dark ballet of flowing movement that reminded me of my old lava lamp I would watch for hours but on a much larger and faster scale. The ream state I was falling into was known to me and I was happy their no-one to tell me what to do or make fun of my issues. You see I can’t keep a relationship for longer than three months, the women all get sick of me and they soon find out that commitment to me is based on how often I can get them to spread their legs for me. I’m shallow and I know it, not a handsome man, nor ugly but tall and strong with the gift of the gab, as my dear old mum would say. I could talk any woman into bed but keeping her there was a totally different thing! Work was good designer for a huge marketing agency meant I could hone my “bullshitometer” to the max! It’s all about how you say it not what you say. It’s in the body language the look in your eyes, sensual contact with the other person male or female and making them feel like they are the centre of your world. Cynic! Yes I suppose I am.
Am I a Loner? Yes again, I have many acquaintances but very few friends. I love the night and all it brings with it hence my love for the shadow ballet I am watching now as I drift off yet again comfortable with whom I am and the dark conceited ways of my life. As the haze of sleep washes over me I smile as I know I will soon be in a world of my making.
The corridor was dark and the timber distressed as I walked past an old photo of a woman with manly jowls and a late 1800’s dress looked back at me with what looked like a scowl on her face, her eyes never leaving me. I remember thinking, “Why aren’t I on a beach somewhere or at a pool watching bikini clad women walk past me like they normally do”. The air was thick with decay and damp to match the walls, paint and wallpaper was hanging from walls like ripped clothing hanging from a shoulder, as well as door frames and the undercoat was moist and black as night. As I turned the corner to the lounge room an old TV was sitting in the far corner blinking out undulating static and with a hiss that sent shivers up my spine.
“Wake up now you wanker” I thought aloud to myself, but to no avail. The rocking chair that was positioned in front of the TV was moving but empty as if someone had put the kettle on and it was an add break. I felt my testicles tighten in my underpants and not in a good way, as I moved towards the kitchen. Plates of old half eaten rotting food was just sitting on a table with just two chairs and in one was an old man stuffing the rotting maggot and cockroach infested plate of used to be food into his toothless mouth and the sucking noise he was making as he did so made the bile in my own stomach rise to my throat before I swallowed it back down. He looked at me with white dead eyes and made a “yum yum” sound as he did so. I stood for what seemed like hours but was a few mere seconds when he sat bolt upright and said through a drool of crawing and disgusting grool “Upstairs is where you’ll find what you are looking for”.
I made to answer the old man but he just went back to slurping filthy rot into his greedy rubbery lipped mouth. I stepped slowly out of the kitchen, turned and was greeted by the figure sitting in the rocking chair. “Upstairs is where you need to be” the old woman said and as I moved through the room to the other door I glanced back and saw that her frail body was sitting rocking back and forth with eyes that could not see, the lids had been sown to the top of the cheek, and I could see the bloated orb underneath writhing against the thin folds of skin as if she could see thru the translucent membrane. I stumbled as I walked backward toward the stairs back in the rot infested corridor. I could now smell it for the first time “FEAR” I was smelling my own fear it was thick and musky like I hadn’t showered for a week or more and heavy with uncertainty and misgivings. Each step I placed a foot on gave me a surge of thickening fear and doubt. Doubt is something I never have so the sensation was quite new to me. “What am I doing” I said to myself as I placed my left foot on the second to last step. I couldn’t turn around, for some reason I needed to be here! This is my dream and there is obviously something for me at the end of the dream a blond, oh I know a redhead boy how I love a curvy redhead.
The top of the stairs was a stark contrast to the bottom level it was light and airy with fun wallpaper and photos of kids playing in fields and on playground equipment. I had a closer look it was me I was smiling and having fun, I remember this I was about nine and mum left me at the party and was supposed to pick me up after but she never came I had to sit waiting for her for an hour. It was cold and started to rain by the time she arrived. All the “I’m sorry darling” in the world didn’t make up for that day. I was so scared I remember I actually pissed my pants as the shadows of darkness danced around the trees. Man how things change now I great the darkness like an old friend. A door opened in front of me and I walked in and was guided by one of the shadow dancers to sit, so I did.
Now I don’t know why but I laughed at that moment to myself, about just how silly and stupid this really was, and where were the beautiful women clad in not much. Was I being punished, or was my mind making the end much more enjoyable.
“Jack” a voice boomed silently at me from behind.
“SIT! you must stay and chat a while".
I thought I was going mad but it’s only a dream so I sat and my shadow dancer flowed around me as if warding off evil spirits.
“Jack, why are you here” the voice commanded me this time, asking a question I did not have an answer to. I thought about it and maybe it was my subconscious testing me so I gave my normal smart arse comment in reply.
“No it’s you who are here in my head, so why are you here” I asked now looking around waiting for the girls to appear.
“I live here Jack this is my house you came to me for a reason, you all come to me for a reason” the voice said again.
“You keep saying here where is here” I yelled the words now feeling visibly uneasy for the first time.
“How did you get that picture of me from that party” I demanded not my anger feeding me false bravado.
“I told you I live here” there was a short pause “this is my home I see all who come to me seeking answers and or retribution for a past deed or insurrection”. It finished.
“You are a self serving bastard of humanity Jack, you have achieved so much but at what cost, you have destroyed women , made men feel inadequate, left lovers feeling unfulfilled and most of all you have lied to yourself!..........you are exactly the type of person I am looking for to assist me in tormenting the world in which you live.” It paused as if taking an almighty breath inward and the room seemed to go light and my head spun then it started again.
“I am in need of souls to become my workers so to speak on your earthly plane, you are mesmerised by my dancers every night and live out your sordid fantasies inside your mind each and every night. You empty your seed into husks of woman or a tissue having no human relationship with either it is just a means to an end Jack, don’t you see you are made for this! help me and live eternal by my side” it finished.
I was floored I could do whatever I wanted, torment the humans I so despised and had no affiliation to, but for some reason my morals which I thought I did not have kicked in and I whispered one word. “No!”
“I will not do such a thing” I said quietly and with some conviction of word. The shadow dancer became agitated as it flowed around my body as I rose from the chair to leave. The featureless creature stopped and seemed to shake a shadow head as if telling me this was not good.
“This just won’t do Jack we must have your compliance or you cease to exist that is the law”. It said with an air of sorrow in its tone.
“I don’t care I will have no part in this” I said as I made my way down the stairs. Each footfall feeling harder and more sluggish than the other like I was descending in black treacle. I pushed on only to be met by the old man with bugs crawling from his mouth and out of his nose. “You must stay” it said to me as It spat putrid food and air at me from it’s over sized rubbery mouth. I pushed past it and my shadow dancer guided me further down toward the front door.
A piercing ear shattering scream filled my ears to the point where my sanity was on the verge of leaving and running away without me. It stopped and I looked up blood running from my nose and a ringing in my ears that kept all other noise at bay. The woman with sown eyes lifted and grew into a think of revulsion, the eyes split open and the eyes that stared at me were dead like a shark, the mouth devoured by rows of sharp needle like teeth. The woman’s legs grew thick and sinewy and I heard the bones crack as they formed into backward facing knees with webbed clawed toes on reptilian feet. Her skin blistered into pustules of cream and green and spilled out all over here like a demonic boil. Blood spilled now from the pustule sores and her hands melded into a three fingered hand with razor sharp claws.
“You will stay with me Jack” the voice echoed from all around my brain.
I screamed and ran at the thing in front of me and hit it with my full body weight taking it by surprise. It stumbled and fell sideways of newly formed knee joints as I rushed past to the door.
The handle in site I felt ten thousand needles enter my shoulder and take with it a portion of meat.
I looked back and smashed my thumb into the eye of the daemon and it squished under the pressure and oozed but the desired effect was had. It let go and as it did I slammed out of the font door and landed on the soft green grass. My eyes flew open and the pain in my shoulder was real. A needle tooth was still embedded in my soft tissue as I slowly made my way to the bathroom in my apartment. Blood flowing and meat flapping I grabbed a towel I dialled 911 gave my address and passed out.
“He’s bleeding badly, did you see a dog in the apartment, what did this to him” the voices flowed and mulled around him drugs and painkillers and loss of blood all holding jack from being on the mortal plane.
“Jack you are mine and you can’t get away, you can feel this I know” the voice said and I recognised it from the house of my dreams.
“I am not yours and I never will be I am my own person, YOU DONT OWN ME!” I said and the words drifted through my lips in a whisper to the attending paramedics.
I felt my body gasp for air and the soup that was my thought process at that moment started to clear even with the drugs in my system, I felt strong and more over, different, I felt my body healing. One of the paramedics looked on in shock as the wound in my shoulder started to close by itself with regenerative speed. She looked at the other and they both stopped inhaled at the same time and held their breath as they stared at me. It was at that moment my eyes shot open to reveal dead black orbs where my eyes should be.
© All books copyright of Graeme Hawke (and all nom deplumes) plagiarising is punishable by law.
© All books copyright of Graeme Hawke (and all nom deplumes) plagiarising is punishable by law.