skonen_blades: (Default)
Houses dot the central nervous system-ness in me
The system of these homes all like to shiver nervously
The streets between the houses are the veins; the cars are blood
The spine’s a giant high rise and the cars become a flood
The main exchange a cloverleaf of flexing highway road
A beat that pushes everything according to a code
A morse code based on pendulums that goes from left to right
Repetitive, monotonous, a drummer in the night
Stress can speed the beat up. So can love and so can fear.
The only thing that slows it down is year by crushing year
Every home’s a castle here and home is where the heart is
So many rooms inside of me that I feel like a tardis
Each and every house in here connected by a thread
Stitches from an ancestor, woven by the dead
We are borrowed tapestries from history’s old blanket
When you get the chance, my dear, I recommend you thank it
Beats and streets and tapestries and rhythm keep us living
Life’s a gift and love’s the way that gift will keep on giving




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skonen_blades: (gasface)
I squeeze blood sugar from the prefab four and count the draconian petals on my spine. Each helmet-sized affirmation made of reptile skin and seven-eleven countertops turns my life into a Turkish dice game. Let’s tickle the cheese. Let’s elevate our rim shots. Let’s make baskets just so that we can keep them empty. This clean-shaven hard drive is balding early and trying too hard. Let’s whisper the answer and let the motherboard relax.

It’s a complicated song played in the key of skeleton in dragon scales. It’s a universe in the shape of a balloon animal. A mental rat hunt. Shaving cream on the face of Jesus. I wouldn’t be here selling tickets to the ride if I could take myself up on it. I can’t see the forest for the tease. Crocodile clips in machine-gun brainstorms whip through the wires to the light-bulb idea factory and just like that, it becomes a demolition.

The support structure shudders and you can sense the revolution through the soles of your feet. Capes and counts invade the ballroom to lie to the mirrors. It’s just dessert, you say, but I can’t agree. It’s so much more. It’s February in the oven and this bakery needs an excuse to become a lingerie store. I can’t rid myself of the caretaker’s key ring anymore than I can pilot paper airplanes.

But all the same, get comfortable. Perambulate the plank. Let’s get to gnaw each other. Each bitter peach-pit future can go fuck itself while we settle into the flux of ley-line predictions. Quantum possibilities will flicker and fluctuate around us as the future calcifies, no, coalesces, no, coagulates into a timeline. Clarity is for the weak. Let’s meet the coming storm with a smile and our lucky, lucky teeth.




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skonen_blades: (whysure)
The blood came in quick gasps, rivulets dribbling down between and over the trembling flesh. It smeared around their mouths, making them look like clowns. People who had lost their way and ended up here, paying and paying and paying.

It was a great day. The sun stretched in through the living room windows. There was no way to tell that these thoughts I had in my head were psychotic or harmful. How could they be on a day like today?

The short one begged for his life in between mouthfuls of fresh meat, laughing and crying at the same time. The pale one looked close to the end. His eyes were unfocused and the purple bruising had made it almost all the way around his chest. The beasts were working hard on him. It was doubtful he had enough meat on his bones to feed the young that were working their way around inside of him, coring him, animating him.

I looked out to the front lawn, cigarette in my hand. That hand was a claw thanks to the stroke and I had to close one eye to see the lawn clearly. My speech centers had been affected to the point where only two close friends and my ex-wife had any idea what I was saying. It was hard to express myself unless I was writing or touching someone with my hands.

The pale one fell over. The short one’s begging became grunts. The six others knelt, glassy-eyed and vacant, as the worms slithered through them. Cars with no drivers. Husks in a human shape. Nothing but the mouth inside of them now. Nothing but the hunger. Soon, they would rise to their feet again. Soon they would be bloodless.

I read an ad in the paper yesterday about a miracle cure for stroke victims. I’m toying with the idea of going to the address and paying the eighty dollars. I would love to have full locomotion again. I would give anything to be able to walk without a cane. To give two thumbs up instead of just one.

The one who’d come late, the older one, was the first one to his feet. Even though he had no intelligence left now that the worms had had their way inside him, he appeared to be smirking. His cane was lying on the ground beside him.




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skonen_blades: (bounder)
The milk from Mother Nature’s boob is also known as blood
It rushes through our bodies in a never-ending flood

Each one of us connected by the vibrant colour red
A rhythm beats within us till the day that we are dead

The breath and pump that grants our crimson blood the air it needs
A red accordion that wraps around a drum that bleeds

And so our blood is music and we’re music through and through.
And so is he. And her and me. And you. And you. And you.

If Earth’s a rocky island and our blood is all marooned
Our blood is in a common key, we all carry a tune

And every single one of us is filled up with a sea
A cherry-coloured, scarlet-shaded, sanguine melody

An ocean based on iron. A briny, salty tide
It is the thing that makes us all the very same inside

The differences outside outweigh the sameness that’s within
Capillaries capitulate with one prick of a pin

Or one swipe of a sword, they say, or one gun’s loaded shout
A piece of metal used correctly lets it all run out.

We need to keep the song inside our fragile human frame.
Because of that, while we’re alive, I think we’re all the same.


So let’s acknowledge music with a hearty, heady rush.
Acknowledge that our lives are but a rhythmic, pressured gush
And while our lives may finish with a drumroll and a hush
Our lives begin when music that’s within us makes us blush.





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skonen_blades: (blurg)
When Brother Lazarro’s mutant ability kicked in, he was 19 years old. He’d been a novice priest for six weeks.

His blood glowed.

It appeared to those around him that an inner celestial light was pouring out through his pores. He was lit from within, veins clearly visible as streaks of light, toaster wires buried under his now translucent skin. A halo of divinity surrounded him.

The light also gave off heat. It was tied to his emotions. If he was at peace, the light was soft and comforting, merely a few degrees above normal body temperature. If he was angry or disturbed, it increased.

The archbishop proclaimed that it was a miracle and that the boy was a gift from god, an angel, a harbringer of the rapture, or maybe even the second coming himself.

The archbishop took Brother Lazarro into his chambers after this public proclamation to talk to him about a secret course of action. The archbishop had been contacted by Rome. There was a secret society of priests whose mutations had also become active in the last five years. They had been gathered to create a secret society of assassins whose purpose it was to kill those who opposed the church.

The archbishop asked Brother Lazarro to be a weapon in God’s war against the atheists.

Brother Lazarro had taken the good parts of the bible to heart. He wanted to spread God’s message of love and brotherhood and acceptance. He wanted no part of being trained to kill or to use his powers for murder.

The archbishop wasn’t happy with this. He beat Brother Lazarro with his scepter. He would have beaten him to death except that in his anguish and fear, Brother Lazarro became hotter and hotter under the blows of the archbishop. Within seconds, the archbishop’s robes caught fire and the metal scepter became too hot to hold.

Brother Lazarro fled the church, setting fire to the pews along the way as he ran crying, despondent, and concussed into the warm night.

The archbishop was burned but did not die. Scarred horribly and on life-support, he called a press conference. He reversed his earlier proclamation and said that he had never witnessed evil like he had in his quarters, alone with the boy. He said that the boy had tried to kill him in an unprovoked attack.

The archbishop named the boy as a demon. He excommunicated Brother Lazarro.

Brother Lazarro stumbles now, glowing, through the sewers of Brazil. He is a flame in the dark dressed in ruined priest’s robes. His memory is spotty but he knows he must hide.




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skonen_blades: (hmm)
It’s the deepest cuts that take the longest time to start bleeding. Seconds pass as the body figures out that it’s really serious this time before crying blood from a new mouth.

It’s the same with broken hearts. Cupids are claim jumpers. They’re deaf kids that like to set things on fire.

Love is a leg sweep from a judo master. It’s a diving board for a pool that may or may not be empty. It’s cigarette burns on church pews. It’s that empty place at the dining table. It’s 2d6 against Godzilla.

There’s a rhythm to love. A purring idle of spoon to mouth. A cobalt ravager of dreams playing the vibraphone through two tin cans and a string into your ear. Your best friend’s window is open and it’s summer vacation. Love floods over the banks, committing open-heart perjury on the witless stand, dooming us to be held in contempt bred from familiarity.

Love is the raft. Love is the river.

Whiles foxes trot and bugs jitter, I know that as sure as a pair of mismatched socks is a sign of a person with more important things on his or her mind, spring’s a comin’. Turn those turtle shells into bongos and let’s pick up the pace. Ninjas, fly your kites. Hunters, dry your linen. And all you scoreboard announcers out there, spray your throats with kerosene and kool-aid.

Spring’s doing the watusi down school hallways with a big fat smile on his face.

This time around, love’s picking up hitch hikers. Show a little leg.





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skonen_blades: (bounder)
I’m a psychic.

My aunt saw the ability and trained me when I was younger. My parents thought I was crazy but my aunt knew what ran in the family.

She taught me that most people have a box inside them where they keep their most precious memory. She taught me how to dig it out.

Surrounding myself with the most pleasant memories that every person had was one of the only ways I could keep myself sane while walking around in the crush of the general populace. I rarely left the house.

My aunt was called Trushka. We were descended from Eastern Europe. Not very many records existed of our nomadic family. We had been gypsies for generations. The circuses that had travelled Europe for centuries always had a Seer. A Reader. A Medium. A Bridge. One of our family.

Always a girl (except for Panthos in 1410 but that’s a tragic tale unto itself) and in this generation, it was me. Except this was Ohio and America was dead inside.

My parents had turned their back on the old ways. They were investment bankers on the property ladder. Ghosts, curses, changelings, fairies, mind-reading; all these were fairy tales from a primitive culture.

They were going to have me committed. They had tears in their eyes. They were happy to let my aunt take me in as a last-ditch effort. That effort turned into a permanent situation. I lost touch with them.

I lived with Trushka until her death twelve years later. By that time, I’d matured into a 24-year old young woman. Reclusive but gifted with the strong figure of my hard-working lineage. I was tall and shy.

When my aunt died, I needed to pay rent on the house she’d left to me. I got a job in the library.

Like I said, I’d been taught to cloak myself in people’s nicest and most cherished memories to keep myself sane during working hours around people.

It was always the same. Wedding. Wedding. Wedding. Honeymoon. Honeymoon. Honeymoon. Wedding. Wedding. Honeymoon. Second date. That one glorious moment from a current or past relationship, glittering on a string deep in the chasm of everyone’s heart.

Most of the time.

I remember the first time I got a picture of a room of dead people. Blood splashed on the walls. A sense of euphoria and honest love. Two little girls and a woman. A man tied up in the corner that had been forced to watch but was now dead as well.

I saw him. Over there in the cooking section. The man with the glasses. Impossible to tell how long ago this memory was from but it was his happy place.

It happens rarely but when it does, I don’t know what to do about it.




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skonen_blades: (meh)
The Man in Charge wears a transparent faceplate.

The only muscles still present are the ones needed to move his eyes, eyelids, and jaw. The rest is just chalk-white bone under two inches of glossy, transparent resin. The irises of his expressionless eyes are bright yellow.

The rest of his skin is grey. I cannot tell his race. I call him The Man in Charge because he is not tied to a chair and he has a gun.

He has boosted muscles pushing the seams of his suit to their limits. I’m sure he has custom clothes for his frame but I guess the suit was last minute to get into this charity dinner and up to my room.

I heard a few seams purr open when he body slammed me onto the plush carpet. It was the first ten seconds of six very painful minutes he used to make sure that I was both motionless and paying attention. The carpet is now a Pollock painting of my blood. I don’t think I’ll ever walk properly again and I’m done playing the piano.

My security would have arrived by now so I can only assume that they’ve been bought out or killed.

The Man in Charge looks at me with an almost insectile curiousity. He opens a cel phone, dials a number, and attaches it to my head with a thick rubber band. He gets close and I can tell that he isn’t sweating or breathing hard.

This henchman in front of me is worth millions.

I hear the digital chirp of a ring tone in a different continent before the click of a receiver picking up. It sounds like a party.

“Ronald? You there, Ronald, you old scamp?” says a drunk London accent.

I recognize the voice immediately. I gift the Pollock painting in the carpet with a convulsive jet of urine.

“Have you met La Lune? He’s the exquisite man I told to get your attention. I trust he has? He’s a very…ah….thorough employee. Angela!” the voice on the other end of the line says. He’s talking to someone else at the party now. “How nice to see you. Just a second dear, I’m in the middle of something. Talk to you soon. Ronald? You still there?” he asked.

I gurgle through missing teeth something approximating a positive response.

“Good, good. La Lune should be setting up a video feed now so that we can all learn a valuable lesson. There’s a few people here that aren’t entirely on board yet and I need to show them what happens to people who try to jump ship. Can you see him?” he asks. I can almost smell the expensive champagne on his breath.

La Lune is indeed setting up a tripod and a small camera a few feet away. It’s pointed at me.

I think the next few minutes are going to bring me new experiences.

The red light on the camera comes on.

I hear cheers from the phone.

“Ladies and Gentlemen!" says the voice on the phone to the party guests, "Before dinner gets underway, I must ask you to bring your attention to the screens above the buffet tables and at either end of the hall. The man in the chair is a man you’ll recognize. He was here just last week. He left our little organization with the idea of telling the outside world about our plans.” He says.

“He will be our entertainment before dinner.” He chuckles. “La Lune? You may proceed.”

La Lune, the skullface in the tux, nods and walks towards me.

I figure I might as well scream.



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skonen_blades: (cocky)
This is a locked room.

Terms and conditions apply. There are stacks of contracts here, all of them signed in blood, a disturbingly high percentage of them marked with a big, red letter X. One doesn’t need to be able to read to make a mark.

There are tricky logistics involved in keeping paper records safe in a dimension known primarily for fire. An organization that has been operating since the dawn of cognizance has a lot of records to contend with.

It’s a paper trail that can’t be traced.

There are stacks of parchment here. A wing for stone tablets. A few rooms containing bark. There are mile high stacks of cheaply made photocopier paper, bound together and alphabetized by the damned.

It’s the latest room that has the devil smiling, though. It’s the new storage wing that came online in the early nineties. It’s empty except for a hard drive that isn’t full yet, not even after ten years. There are millions of .docs stored on it.

A new clause has been invented. It states that if the signer of the contract promises to sign in blood once they are at the threshold of Hell, they can forgo the actual blood signing at the time of the contract acceptance.

This makes it possible for the devil to reach out online.

He’s slipped contracts into the privacy term agreements of several large internet companies without their knowledge. Over seven thousand lawyers from Hell have managed to boil the essence of the standard contract down to an airtight paragraph of generalities.

No one reads those things anyway.



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skonen_blades: (thatsmell)
I’m tied up better that Bettie Page and struggling not to choke on my gag. I’m squirming around in the spacious red vinyl back seat of an old Chevy. It’s like I’m in a restaurant booth going 100mph down the ragged highway of bat country.

It’s night out. There’s a one-eyed vampire at the wheel shouting my secrets out the window into the ears of jackrabbits and coyotes. The engine is becoming one with his low, ravaged voice. It sounds like he’s powering the engine with what he’s stealing from me. His teeth click together on the consonants like he’s eating these treasures, these things I struggle to keep inside.

They’re more valuable than blood to his kind. The wind dives into the car playfully as our passage shreds the calm of the night-time desert. His long hair turns into medusa turbulence and tugs at his eyepatch.

I can’t give up. I try to saw my bonds with my ragged fingernails. Maybe if I bleed enough, I’ll be able to slither free. There’s too much blood in my nose. I have to breathe around the gag.

My life has been a whip in motion since my birth. Free will is choice. Choices are made based on values. Values are instilled during childhood. The years of my life have been long braids of leather strung together and my childhood has created a destiny that’s pulled the years tight into an arching thrust that has only one inevitable outcome.

My entire life has been a beating and I was never told the safe word.

The arm is coming down now. The end of my life is about to break the sound barrier with a snap that every dominatrix is familiar with.

The demon driver pulls a hard left with his one good arm and now we’re off-road, bumping into the night, kicking up dust.

He’s getting low on secrets and looking for other people to exploit. His desperation is making him take a straight line across the desert to another victim. I can’t let that happen.

I managed to get one hand free. I stop moving. I’m slick with blood and burning from the ropes. I reach up to the gag and undo it.

The vampire-demon driver screams “I am free!” out the window, pauses, and slams on the brakes in panic.

Too late.

I arch up over the back seat like a gymnast. We become each other’s nightmares.

His teeth worry the flesh of my stomach in a wet, chattering maul. With my one arm free, I punch into the weakening flesh of his chest. I’ve put toothpicks under my nails. Five stakes pierce the driver’s heart.

I can feel myself getting dizzy in time with the driver’s slowing pulse.

The car is now a coffin. We die together in a supernatural suicide pact, our corpses in a fully-clothed 69 that will confuse the police if they ever find the vehicle.

We die in the desert but it feels like burial at sea.




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skonen_blades: (blurg)
This heart had caverns. Each ventricle was the size of a cathedral. The ceiling of the aorta curved above Dr. Johans like the dome of a blood-coated football stadium. Her twin spotlights shone out of the darkness, picking out platelet details here and there.

She was ankle deep in the spongy mass of the arterial wall. It had taken hours to get here from the wound. She crawled over drifts of non-moving blood cells the size of hula hoops. They were becoming crusted from their exposure to the outside world.

She’d rappelled down from the starfish entry wound, spelunking into a damp and musky canyon. She had seen the ragged edges of rib-bones like broken overpasses after an earthquake poking through. They had pointed towards her as she slid down her rope, surrounding her as she entered through where the sternum used to be.

Their whiteness had made her think for a second that she was being eaten. The ribs looked like huge, ragged teeth rammed into the maw of some unimaginably huge leviathan.

She had checked her safety harness, wiped condensation off of her faceplate, and kept on descending.

It was just scale playing with her.

She’d become a pathologist because of her agoraphobia. It was odd that becoming as small as this to examine the bodies just made her fearful sometimes on the same level as when she was regular height. It was enough to handle, though, and she kept at it.

All around her, the platelets were crunching like thick snow under her feet. They had the consistency of frost-covered leaf piles. They were hardening now, scabbing over. The sponge she was wading through was slowly turning to mud. Soon it would be too hard to walk through and she’d have to have someone come and get her if her feet got trapped in the mud.

Best not let it get to that point. She thumbed her mic.

“Hey Al. Nothing to report down here. No nano, no bios, no germfacs or pizzons. All clear. Scanners and vis report normal. Death confirmed as basic trauma.” She said.

“Okay, Dr. Johans,” came the reply crackling through the smallsuit's speakers. “Get back to the polywire. We’ll pull you up.”

With a last look around the cooling heart of the murder victim, Dr. Johan started the trek towards the dangling safety rope that would take her back to the surface. Once back in the lab, she could enlarge to full size and write her report.




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skonen_blades: (borg)
Vein networks. Tree branches. Tributary rivers. The spatter patterns of supernovae. Lightning reaching down to the earth. That crack in the ceiling. The ivy on the side of city hall.

The perfect parabolic curve of smooth flesh snuggled up against the hardness of his hip-bones.

The colourful reaching of muscle ringed around the twin pinhole cameras staring forward. The dendrites connecting the neurons in the human brain glitter like tinsel on a Christmas tree as electricity arcs from abandoned post to abandoned post. The water is a conductor to a symphony of second thoughts surfing inside the meat.

He stares at the back of her head.

They’re cuddled up cozier than forks in a drawer.

He should be comfortable.

Three decaf soy-milk lattes. Five traded childhood recollections. An honest laugh that neither of them expected. Two burned steaks. Sixteen nervous tics. Nudity. One person asleep, one person awake.

Nine months. 46 chromosomes. Knife-throwing target practice at the terrified volunteer tied to his clenched heart. Worry without limits lying in a crib down the hall in a room coloured with fresh wallpaper. Toys with the price tag still attached lined up against the wall.

Trace a pattern of gold-dust and iron filings on a map. The impurities winding through a slab of marble. Seaweed on a beach.

Tiny shoes.





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skonen_blades: (heymac)
This is the life of a red blood cell rushing through the heart. You are brandy attaching itself and bleeding golden through cell walls to make a person think, for a second, that things might actually turn out okay.

This is the life of an electron in a microphone. A signal ordered, amplified, and turned into noise, rushing down the throat of a wire. You are the song.

A dresser with angel’s wings in the top drawer next to the socks.

Whales beach themselves believing they can flee the ocean. I know how they feel when I listen to you speak and watch you across from me. Having the faith to leap onto the hot sand is easy when you’re near.

You’re a parachute I haven’t pulled yet.

You are the living difference between sheet music and the swelling sound of a piano.

You are time’s enemy. Life speeds on and you are forgotten by the forces that age us all. Is it a fault in my eye that it never perceives you getting older? A sickness you cause in those who love you?

You are summer’s excuse, a reason for races, and the promise money is based on.

Time will steal from all of us but I feel like I have stolen you from time.






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skonen_blades: (grrr)
I can feel the sickness ripping open bonds between my cells as I load the gun. It’s a sickeningly pleasant sensation. The sneaky thing about the virus is that it steps on your endorphin throttle pretty hard as it goes to work. Capillaries unzip, organs start growing roots into each other, and skin starts to turn into a body-wide blister. All the while, it feels like great sex and good memories all rolled into one.

I leave puddles when I walk. It feels like ferrets are fighting in my stomach. My bones are becoming more and more pliable. Soon, my fingers will be tentacles and my arms will be rubber.

I wish it didn’t feel so good.

All anyone knows is that it came up from the south. A government installation is suspected but nothing’s been confirmed. The television stopped broadcasting anything other than the EBS two days ago.

I’m chuckling as I slot the last bullet into the clip. It’s a bit a contest between my fingertips and the metal. Mostly, my fingertips lose but the bullet snaps into place when it hits the bone.

There’s a thrill across my back and thighs like a lover’s breath. My cock is rock hard and shows no sign of softening. I’m sure it’ll be the last thing to succumb to this disease. I’ve been turned on for days.

Outside, what’s left of humanity is melting into puddles of basic biological matter. The race is composting. Anyone that still has the capability to move is either trying to have sex with each other or kill themselves. Some are mixing the two. It was raining bodies outside up until this morning. Seriously, there was a lineup two floors down the stairwell from the roof; a patient queue waiting for the sixty-storey diving board.

I guess there aren’t very many people left. Bodies are only coming past my window about twice every half hour now. I can hear their laughter Doppler past.

I ram the cartridge into the base of the gun. I feel something give way in my wrist and I know I’ll have to do the rest with my other hand.

I turn the gun around so that it’s pointing at my eye.

I sigh deeply like I’m on ecstasy.

Laughing, I pull the trigger.



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skonen_blades: (didyoujust)
There comes a point in some people’s lives when the acts of breathing, seeing, and walking are joys in and of themselves. Being alive becomes its own smile-causing reward. The trials and tribulations of life are experiences that never fully penetrate to a depth that affects the base happiness that now takes up space near the heart.

Just the act of being hurt or feeling anger or happiness are all signs of being alive which beats the hell out of the alternative. Every moment after waking is gravy.

Grace thinks that this is a sign of age.

She checks the calculations again underneath the base of the huge quantum distiller oscilloscope proto-generator. She’s near the valve at the bottom. It looks like a tap.

The smooth upturned bell of the generator housing arcs away up to the ceiling. It has a circumference of over seven miles. If she looks directly up, the polished metal and pipes snaking their way across the bowl take up her entire peripheral vision.

If she were claustrophobic, she’d be sweating right now.

As it is, she’s smirking and checking the screens on the terminal below the tap.

Everything looks good but of course, it’s all theoretical.

The government wants oil. There is no more oil left beneath the glass craters that used to be the Middle East. Canada is dry now as well.

Panic is rising.

Grace and her team have used the computers to prove that there is oil in the quantum distiller oscilloscope proto-generator. By proving this mathematically, it’s hoped that it will collapse into a ‘real’ state when the final step is taken.

The final step of turning on the tap.

Grace gets the command in her headset to step forward and turn on the tap.

With a deep breath and a straight back, she takes two decisive steps forward, holds up a glass beaker and turns the knob very slightly on the bottom of what could become a life-giving breast to the entire planet.

Grace’s eyes widen as liquid drips out of the nozzle. Her smile drops.

Something must have gone wrong with the proofs.

Drops of blood are dropping from the tap nozzle and filling the beaker.



tags

Kids

9 July 2007 17:48
skonen_blades: (watchit)
Two dots underneath The Stumble’s jaw meant that it was time to duck. Quite the gamble on Darren’s part, betting that The Stumble wouldn’t pull the trigger with a brain wound while the barrel of The Stumble’s cannon was pointed at my head.

Seeing the red dots fish around underneath The Stumble’s jaw, I closed my eyes. I think I even prayed.

I could feel the impact of Darren’s bullets core the air before I felt a hot rush of liquid on my upturned face that I could only assume was The Stumble’s organic CPU.

I opened my eyes. The gun was still trained on my left eye but the stump of a neck said that The Stumble had turned into a statue. Darren’s gamble with my life had paid off.

I guess I knew where that put me, expendability-wise.

Darren came up through the shadows in the back of the warehouse.

“Hey G, how’s tricks?” he smirked.

Slowly, I got out of the way of The Stumble’s gun. I knew better that to try to get it out of its massive purple hand. Most of their weapons had owner traps that liked to pretend to be functional until they were around a large number of humans or involved in a firefight.

Lessons like that were expensive in human life and well-learned.

“Not bad, Darren. Guess you’re a pretty good shot, huh?” I said back, hands in my pockets, willing my heart to slow down.

“You worry too much, G. Those things don’t have the reflexes God gave a code frog. You were never in any danger.” He walked towards me.

The Stumble’s gun went off at that moment, tunneling a hole in the floor. The recoil caused the massive body to lean back and then fall over onto the floor. It sounded like an elephant wrapped in mattresses. The impact echoed around for a while.

We froze.

After the dust settled, Darren shot me an embarrassed chuckle.

“See? Lots of time.” He said. “Heh heh.”

I left. We were even as far as I was concerned.



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skonen_blades: (angryyes)
My Christmas season as extra help at the slaughterhouse changed my life.

I had been a vocational therapist as well as a stress counselor for pilots. As a side hobby, I trained dogs. All professions were jobs I found fulfilling but not challenging. I found them efficient uses of my time and a help to humanity. These were criteria that had been drilled into me by my parents over the course of my childhood.

That month at the slaughterhouse changed all that.

I remember the interview consisting of me lifting the bolt gun successfully and signing a piece of paper. It was over in less than a minute. One criminal record and credit check later I was in.

For those four weeks, I was ankle deep in blood. I had to wear ear protection to keep the screams of the cows from damaging my hearing. The bolt gun was only as precise as my placement against the foreheads of the unsuspecting cattle.

There was no boredom involved in the repetition for me. I reveled in the continuous quest for the perfect death blow. I marveled at the different reactions of the animal’s bodies.

In the morning, I dressed in white paper clothing that was stained pure red by the lunch break.

Taking a life became a release for me. I left every shift elated.

I cried and got really drunk for the first time in five years when my contract for the ‘extra help’ part of the season ended.

I was a changed man after that. It woke up something deep inside me.

My wife notices it in the bedroom and my co-workers notice it at work. I’ve been promoted. The vice-president invited me out to dinner. People look at me differently in the street.

I go out of my way to drive past the slaughterhouse on the way home. I roll down the windows to try to catch a whiff of blood or hear some screams.



tags
skonen_blades: (meh)
In a rush of blood, the fight was over. Dripping and snarling, they let their hearts slow down. Antlers pulsed with the knowledge of war. Skin hung in flaps off the bark sampled forests. It was one blue eye that looked out on a broken landscape of hearts and anger. One lay down to end the fight and the party began.

Masters cheered and hugged. Money changed hands. This was the recipe of conquest.

Duke pulled the switch and water rushed across the floor to cleanse it. Marble glistened, blood-free, in sudden sparkling new-morning clarity.

He flailed his way in an off-balance gait to the healers. He needed to be put back together sharpish for the festivities. The man was huge with the head of an elk.

He left red footprints for the gods that watched or cared.

Funeral curtains flapped slowly in a breeze coming off the stagnant river outside. Dishes of flowers and scented candles tried and failed to fight the stink.

The fighter lay back on the healer’s bed.

The healer came out dressed in white. The bandages across her face were red and wet around the eyes. The stigmata of her eyes marked her profession. She saw with her metal fingers.

Needles hissed under each nail as she ran her fingertips over the fighter’s long body.


tags
skonen_blades: (borg)
They lived in the basement of the slaughterhouse and lived off of the blood that slid down between the cracks in the floorboards. The loud machinery kept them from being noticed. In this modern age of the new century, these 1800s, the common vampire was becoming far from common.

The fought like rats over the scraps that dribbled down through the cracks. Their red eyes glinted in the darkness.

They’d be extinct by the turn of the century.



tags
skonen_blades: (dark)
Officer David ‘Pizzaman’ Pasadena chuckled wetly on the twisted hood of his patrol car and died. Watery black blood flooded out from his exit wounds. It was dawn. He was the last cop in Texas. Texas now belonged to the Bluecrests.
They fought the law and the law lost.
The zone expanded. Nothing stopped them. This part switched from Ours to Theirs easily. Perhaps quickly is a better word. There was nothing easy about the casualties.

David dropped different colours of food colouring into the water when he and his brother were kids. Into the aquarium after the fish died. He had fed the fish a piece of his birthday cake the day before and the fish had died. The drops of food colouring bloomed like upside down mushroom clouds. David could remember the Flash Gordon skies they got for a few minutes before the water ended up just turning brown. He remembered the shared sense of wonder with his brother. He remembered staring wide eyed at the new world in the aquarium.
His brother was shot to death in a corner store hold up a year later.
That’s why David decided to become a cop.

David’s eyes were filled with blood.
His body lay cooking on the hot metal, broken and awkward. His face was speckled with little glints of embedded windshield diamonds. His pores squeezed out a black sweat of oily death. His corpse lay in a pool of thin black blood that was evaporating, sizzling on the hot metal. His dead eight-ball eyes were looking up at a Flash Gordon sky.
They’d won here. It was only a matter of whether or not they’d stop here.


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