Family Problems part 1

Despair had its claws into my heart, bleeding me dry of hope.  Does that seem a bit melodramatic?  Maybe so, but when you’ve been kicked in the teeth by life so many times that you’ve lost your lower jaw. then you’re allowed to be a bit melodramatic.  At least this time it was just a punch in the gut by my cousin.

“Larry, you disappoint me.  Why don’t you have my money?”  Cousin Antonio punctuated his sentence with another punch that would have sent me to my knees, if it wasn’t for his two associates who were kind enough to help me remain standing by pinning my arms.  “You’re family, but I can’t let you just walk over me.  I want my five Gees.”

We may be family but I doubt anyone would be able to tell without coming to one of our Family get togethers.  Or was that family get togethers.  I always get the two confused, but of course both he and I were both.  I was six foot four and wiry, brown hair grown a bit wild and shocked to attention every morning.  I was my dad if you put him on one of those racks and pulled real hard, which might explain the hair.  Well except the piercing blue eyes that mom gave me.  Now Antonio, he had the short dark hair, was as wide as he was tall, and had a chip on his shoulder that allowed him to tower over me right then and there.

I spit out a bit of blood from where I had bitten my lip.  “You caught me at a bad time.”  Of course anytime was a bad time since I didn’t have the money.  “Just give me a couple more days.”

Cousin Antonio lifted his chin and his associates released their hold.  Unfortunately for me, gravity didn’t see Cousin Antonio’s cue to let me go and I fell to my knees.  Damn that hurt.  “Only because I love you Larry.  Get it to me by Thursday.  Otherwise I might not be in such a generous mood.”

Generous, yeah, that’s what I was thinking.  “Thanks a lot cuz.  I mean it.”

Cousin Antonio flipped me the bird.  “Tell my favorite aunt I said hi.  Come on boys.  Let’s go see a man about a horse.”

“I hope everything comes out okay.”  That earns me another bird, but it’s worth it.  If you can’t get a rise out of family then why bother living.

I collect what I can of my dignity and head back out of the fine alleyway that Antonio had deemed needing to redecorate with my bodily fluids.  I checked my watch to see that all thoughts of getting lunch had gone to hell.  Oh well, Sheryl was telling me I needed to lose some weight.  I mean come on, you can still see me when I turn sideways.  That can’t be healthy.

Sariah’s Story Chapter 14

Kegan walked with Asopt out of the shop.  “I’m not happy not knowing why Lyda went after us,” said Kegan.

“Agreed,” Asopt said.  “Want me to see what I can find?”

“Yeah, but let’s keep this between the two of us.  I think Sariah is worried it would distract her.  If we can handle it without her, we will,” Kegan said.

“Is that smart?” asked Asopt.

“Probably not,” Kegan said.  “Kicking a wasp nest is never smart, but I would rather do that then have the nest surprise me.”

Asopt laughed.  “Did anyone ever tell you you have a way with words?” he asked.

“No,” Kegan said.

“Good, you haven’t been lied to,” Asopt said.   With that he left leaving Kegan stunned with how well he had walked into that one.  After contemplating how hard it would be to hit Asopt with a small tripping spell at that range he decided to head back inside.

There he found the store empty.  Kegan moved into the back room and found Sariah working over the small pot he mixed his signature purple.  “Please don’t play with that,” he said.

Sariah stirred the contents a bit more with a heavily colored stick.  “You really do need more iodine.”

Kegan reached over and took the stirrer from her.  “I don’t need it really at all.”

Sariah slapped Kegan’s hand to make him release the stick.  She caught it deftly before it hit the floor, all this without getting a drop of the dye on herself.  Kegan, on the other hand was not so lucky.

“Really Sariah?” Kegan asked as he quickly cast a small cantrip, forcing the ink back out of his shirt and onto the floor.

“You were the one whole rudely took my stick,” she said.  Sariah went back to stirring the dye.  “I’m confused.”

“Why are you confused?” asked Kegan.

Sariah held up the bottle of iodine.  “I added more of this, but the color hasn’t changed.”

“I told you, I don’t need any iodine.  As long as I have some of that dye there I can add anything.  I crafted the pot to change any liquid into my dye,” Kegan said.

Sariah looked at the pot, then at Kegan.  “You were that lazy?”

“Creating a unique magical item that transmutes any liquid into the dye that makes me quite comfortable financially is lazy?” Kegan asked.

“Okay, if you put it that way, probably not, but still, why did the color shift?” she asked.

“The color is still the same,” Kegan said.

“No it’s not,” Sariah countered strongly.  She stared him down, daring him to disagree again.

Kegan sighed.  “I created the pot, but I made one slight miscalculation.”

“What did you do?” Sariah asked.

“I didn’t realize I had to use so much ink to infuse the pot, so I kind of used all of the original ink to make the pot.  I had to whip together a new batch to begin producing new ink,” Kegan said.

Sariah waited, but Kegan wasn’t adding anything more.  She decided to push the matter.  “And?”

“I ran out of iodine.  I figured the purple was close enough,” Kegan admitted.

“Ha!  I knew it,” Sariah said.

“That’s nice Sariah, but I would be more concerned how you are going to arrange for an accident for a certain someone,” Kegan said.

Sarah stopped stirring the dye.  “I have a pretty good idea how to do it.”

This time it was Kegan’s turn to wait, but Sariah didn’t say anything more.  Finally he caved in.  “Okay, how?” he asked.

“We need to go to the river and see someone about some slime,” she said.

“Great.  Slime,” Kegan said.  Sariah nodded.  “What are you going to do, make him slip to death?” he asked.

My Personal Demon

I look my demon in the eyes without flinching, much.  My demon could sense my trepidation, taste my fears.  “You will never be a success,” my demon says.  “You don’t have the fire inside to do it.”

I shake my head.  “I can do it,” I say, but it sounds whiny in my ears.  “I can change.”  My demon smiled even more, his eyes throwing daggers at my resolve.  “Really.”

“You are a wanna be,” my demon says.  “Remember that time you wanted to ask Renee out, but instead you just babbled for like five minutes, making you sound like an idiot before walking away?”  I look at my feet, but that doesn’t stop him from continuing.  “You said you could do that too.  But don’t worry, you will never be alone.  You are a loser, and I will always be here to remind you of that.  That’s how great of a demon I am.”

I begin to walk away, but stop.  “You know something,” I say, “If I am such a loser, that means you must be one too.”  I turn and look him in the eyes again, this time without flinching.  “I mean, why would you be my demon if you didn’t suck at being one.  I mean, if you were awesome you would be plaguing Tom Brady or Beyonce.  Instead you’re stuck with me.”

“Boy, get out of here with that,” my demon sputters.  “Without me being so awesome you would be kicking butt and living the good life.  I’m one of the best demons there is.”

I smile my own grin of daggers as my demon realizes what he had done.  “Thanks, now I know I’m awesome.”  My demon watches horrified as I walk away from the mirror.

Walking on the Dark Side

Short post for tonight.  Was working on trying to get one of my computers to be happy on the network.  This took so long I was left with no time to work on a post for tonight.  I tried to write a few things, but I kept going into very dark places very quickly.  That left me with a good question.  As a writer I try to get inside people’s minds and put their essence onto a written page.  This can be fun, but it can also be disturbing.  Some of my characters scare me.  Some of them make me want to punch them in the face.  Others come off as arrogant or untrustworthy.  The question is when you visit that place inside of you to find where those characters live, do you bring them closer to the surface?  Do they begin stalking your persona, trying to dominate, or threaten your current mindset?  I am sure my dark storytelling tonight was because I am tired and I should be going to bed, but since I am tired and ready to go to bed does that leave me more vulnerable for that pace of foulness to come out.  Interesting things to dream on.  Stay writing my friends.

A Blogger’s Dillema

His brain was too broken, or worse

As he picked up his paper and pen

Trying to craft some lines of verse

But crossing out words once again

 

The picture he tried to impart

Kept changing inside of his mind

He tried to paraphrase Descartes

‘I can think, therefore I can find’

 

With that he picked words to  pursue

The words hid themselves out of sight

And with deadlines long overdue

He sat down to fight the good fight

 

So what did the author create?

For that we will just have to wait.

The Beginning of the End

The two armies waited patiently just three hundred yards apart.  Forty thousand men and woman, waiting for the order to lose their humanity and rip the other side into hunks of meat for carrion.  Their swords were sharpened, their armor polished and oiled, almost glowing in the morning sun, but no one dared cross the imaginary lines that divided the two armies.  No one, that is except for the two groups parlaying in the center.

A mostly bald woman with a body as lean and muscular as a panther looked at her counterpart with a hatred stoked by centuries of slights.  The young man, whom she assumed from his size had barely been inducted into manhood, was wearing the Tazibe general’s traditional garb incasing him in pure white linen, only exposing his ice blue eyes.

“I call forth Barbenzal, a ninth ring wizard whose specialty is fire,” spoke the blue eyed general.  A tall dark skinned man dressed in yellow robes and hair to match stepped forward from the entourage behind the blue eyed general.  The general continued.  “We claim five thousand lives.”

The bald woman waved her hand and a large man wearing many chains that seemed to cover his body like clothing waddled forward.  “I am Nazeal-Benari.  I am a ring ten earth master.  I discredit your five thousand, and give you only one thousand.  I also take credit for removing four thousand of your troops.”

The man dressed in yellow inhaled quickly, sounding like a crackling flame.  “You are not a tenth ring,” said Barbenzai, “I refute your claim.”

Nazeal -Benari whipped his arms into the air, his chains making the sound of a thousand gongs.  “You dare refute me,” Nazeal-Benari shouted.  “I will challenge you to Parjorn if you continue on this path.”

Barbenzai took a step forward.  “I will agree to…”  The blue eyed general’s fist snapped up into the air.  Barbenzai immediately silenced.

The blue eyed general slightly nodded his head at his female counterpart.  “Accepted.  Remove your thousand and I will remove my four thousand.  The battle shall commence in one hour.”  With that the general turned and walked away from the parlay.

Barbenzai sneered at Nazeal-Benari.  “You’re claim will be your death.  We will still Parjorn after the slaughter.”  With that he turned and was about to walk after the general.

“You are right there is to be a slaughter,” the bald woman whispered.

Barbenzai stopped in his tracks and turned around.  “A Mupine woman who speaks to foreigners?  This is unheard of.  To what do I owe the honor?”

The bald woman smiled a very predatory smile.  “My name is Queen Alie Harn Treshold.  Sometimes the time of customs must come to pass unto death.”

Barbenzai looked confused.  “Why does the custom of not speaking in the presence of foreigners end today?”

Queen Alie Harn Threshold walked up to Barbenzai.  “Your employers made a mistake sending a boy to insult me.  They will regret that today. ”

Barbenzai looked back at the blue eyed general and the rest of the entourage.  They were almost back to friendly lines.  “You are outnumbered, even with the loses falsely negotiated by Nazeal.  They could send a lion cub to destroy you.  I am surprised they…”  Barbenzai stumbled and looked down and the blood welling from the hole in his stomach where a small dagger had come through his back.  He sagged to his knees before collapsing to the ground.

Queen Alie bent down to retrieve her dagger.  “Enough of this stupidity.  Nazeal, do your worst.  No one is to be left alive.”

The blue eyed general turned around and saw the blood of Barbenzai drip off the dagger.  His hand raised into the air and trumpets belted out the call to charge.  Thirty thousand troops began to run across the field.

Nazeal  lowered his head and closed his eyes.  He had waited for this moment his whole life.  Magic hadn’t been unleased in battle for centuries, and his would be the first.  He collected his energies and felt the calm descend upon him.  His place in history began now.  Nazeal flung his arms up and with the sound of a thousand gongs the earth around the blue eyed general erupted.  The screams of battle lust turned into screams of panic and death.  Everywhere the ground heaved and collapsed.  The mighty force was a third of its size after the first few seconds.  Nazeal dropped his hands, worn from the exertion, but the smile on his face echoed the glory he felt.

Queen Alie put her hand on his shoulder.  “Rest.  Now it is my turn.”  She cupped her hands around her mouth and roared.  That sound froze her enemies in their tracks with its fierceness.  Her troops, waiting on that call, broke into action.  Queen Alie’s troops screamed their war cries as they plunged across into blood soaked field.  Her army ran down their prey and slaughtered them to a person.

Queen Alie watched the slaughter, her smile sending chills down Nazeal’s spine.  “It has begun.  Time to take this world, or have it burn.”

Quantum Leap of Faith

Thomas worked down the checklist one more time.  All the equipment checked out.  It was finally time to give this a try.  “It looks like it’s time for me to pack my bags.”

A mop of red hair poked out from the other room.  “Are you sure you want to do this?” she asked.

“Elsa, this is going to go down in history.  I want to be the first real time traveler,” Thomas said.

Elsa popped her head back out of the room.  “It’s your funeral,” she said.

Thomas left the equipment room and went into the control room.  Elsa was still doing a few diagnostics while watching some anime on at least half of the other seven monitors in the room.  “Really?  That’s what I get for doing something for humanity?”

Elsa closed one of the diagnostic windows.  “What do you want from me, a medal?” Elsa asked.  “I still say do some more testing with Pinky.”  She pointed to the skinny white mouse twitching in his cage.  “Better him than you.”

“Elsa, Pinky has done his part,” Thomas countered.  “Besides, he still hasn’t fully come back to himself this last time.”  Thomas hurried into the small office, closing the door.  He began stripping down.  “Now remember,” Thomas shouted through the door, “ send Raul to the GPS coordinates after I leave, not before.  I don’t want any problems with causality.  I’ve worked out a system to get close enough using technology of the day to bury my time capsule at that spot.”  Elsa mumbled something from the other room.  “Elsa, you need to promise me.”  On went garb fitting the time period.  He groomed his beard as he looked in the mirror.  Definitely could be an extra in a movie from the period.

Thomas threw open the door and struck a pose in front of Elsa.  “Ta-da!  So what do you think?  Does it look sheik?”  he asked.

“Makes me want to shriek, and not in a good way,” Elsa replied.  “Look, we both know this is a one way trip, so why go back then?”

“I want to prove my faith.  I want to go back and meet my savior face to face,” Thomas replied.

“You’re going to meet him all right, when you end up at the pearly gates,” Elsa said.

Thomas shoved what he was going to take on the trip into a camel hair sack.  “You heathen.  You don’t believe that,” he said.

She grinned and placed her hands over her heart.  “You really do listen to me,” she said.

“I don’t know why sometimes,” Thomas said.  He rushed over and gave Elsa a hug which she returned tepidly.  As he let go he gave her a kiss full on the lips.  “For luck of course,” he said.

Elsa slapped him across the face.  “For not asking,” she replied.

Thomas rubbed his cheek.  “Sorry.  Remember not to-“

“Send the GPS coordinates till after you leave,” Elsa said.  “Yeah, I know.”

Thomas clutched at his heart.  “You really do listen to me,” he said in a falsetto voice.

Elsa picked up a Sailor Moon plushy and chucked it at Thomas’ head, missing but hitting him where his hand was on his heart.

Thomas picked up the plushy and placed it on the table.  “Really, thanks for working with me on this,” he said.

“Thank you for letting me,” she replied softly.  “Now get going before I cry and fry this equipment.”

Thomas grinned and gave her a thumbs up.  He ducked back into the instrumentation room and moved onto the platform.  He thought back to Samuel Beckett and watching him leap through time.  “I wish I had an Al,” Thomas whispered.

“What did you say boss?” Elsa said over the loudspeakers.

“Just a quick prayer,” replied Thomas.  “Start up the sequence.  I don’t want to waste any more time.”

“Very funny boss,” Elsa said.

Suddenly there was a hum of the machine coming to life.  The room darkened as the equipment demanded all the power it could find.  It needed it to show time who’s boss.  Thomas began to feel light headed.  The feeling turned into feeling like he was two places at once, each part pulling on him.  It hurt so bad, mentally and physically.  Thomas could feel himself dissolving, losing himself to the ocean of pain.  “God help me,” he prayed.  “Give me strength.”  Thomas felt his whole body and mind shift, just as he passed out.

 

Elsa watched as one bank after another of the giant capacitors burst into flame, causing the sprinklers to kick in.  Since they had built this lab in a residential space, the sprinklers weren’t built for electronics so water rained down destroying more and more of the machine.  Elsa looked at Pinky as water rained down on her cheeks in solidarity with the sprinklers in the next room.  “Do you think he made it?” she asked the mouse.  Pinky didn’t reply.

 

Thomas opened his eyes and his vision was blurred.  It took blinking numerous times to get to the point of seeing more than blobs.  A hand touched him on the shoulder and Thomas could see his vision clear immediately.  Thomas turned and saw a man with the kindest eyes he had ever seen.  He bowed and said in Aramaic, “Teacher, I have come to find you.”

Jesus smiled.  “I know you have come a long way,” he said.  “From now on you will be known as Judas of Iscariot.”

Thomas blacked out again.

 

Raul found the GPS coordinates and began to dig.  It was twelve feet down. But he found the small capsule that Thomas had promised would be there.  Raul quickly called Elsa.  “The son of a bitch made it Elsa.  I have the capsule.”

“Open it,” said Elsa.  “What’s in it?”

Raul opened the capsule.  He pulled out a piece of clay tiled.  “He left a piece of tile.”

Elsa sounded excited.  “We can carbon date that puppy.  We will know when he went.  Anything else?”

Raul flipped the tile over. “There is something scratched on the tile.  It says ‘By having faith I betrayed my religion.’”

 

Thomas looked on the cross and wept.  He slipped out of the crowd and looked to give back the silver.  He wondered if the machine would recall him soon.  Thomas thought about what he would have to do soon and thought about the sacrifice he had just helped make.  He found his way down by the river and threw the capsule in.  Assuming he had the currents right, this was about the right spot.

Thomas watched the sun go black and knew his part was almost over.  Time to find someone who would let him borrow some rope.

A Wave of Silence

A quiet seemed to flow through the open windows, flooding the house in a tide of silence.  The lack of sound deafened me and I wanted to scream, but as I opened my mouth the silence poured in, threatening to drown me.  I made my way upstairs, trying to climb out of the quiet, but it swirled up with me.  I closed the door to my bedroom and turned on the TV, but was met with a picture with closed captioning.  The silence was already there, mocking me.  It was daring me to try to make a sound.  It was daring me to invite sound over.  The silence screamed that if a sound came in that it would kick its backside back to where sound came from.  I then knew that I had no chance to hear anything again.  I started to cry, sobbing silently, watching as the tears fell wordlessly to the floor, never to be heard again.