S O M E W H E R E - T O - B E - A L O N E
Without proof of one's experience, one did not experience anything. When one is alone, one does not exist.
FRIDAY 26th FEBRUARY 2016
It was fucking freezing
after the taxi pulled away leaving me on the side of the highway in the early
evening. The asphalt was too wide for a backwater country road, but I wasn't
sure if it was a highway, freeway, or autobahn; though really, what the fuck
was the difference? Other than the departing ass of the taxi, there wasn't
a speck of traffic out there. No headlights or any other form of illumination.
The overcast German gloom hid the celestial bodies, and again I was straining
to remember the last time I actually had a decent view of the constellations.
For a moment, I began entertaining the notion that the cabbie was being a
cunt and had dropped me off in the middle of – but then my eyes finally
adjusted to the depth of my woodland surroundings, and a pale building presented
itself through the gusts.
At the end of last year, I had taken the bus to Halle, a university town near Leipzig, and an hour out of Berlin, I first saw this place. There were two empty fields, one with wild grass, the other an expanse of naked soil. In the middle of those two open plots was a narrow driveway that led to a two-story house. Its white-painted stone, elegant windowpanes, and gray-slate roof made it look anything but the typical farm house that you'd expect to find. It was love at first sight.
Clutching my suitcase in my right hand while clinging to my laptop bag with my left, I strode with a hunch toward that lonesome house. On my approach, I began regretting that I hadn't investigated further on Airbnb whether or not the place required coal-stoking for the heating. And then, like those fucking irritating scene-cuts in foreign films, searing white light suddenly soaked the canvas of that small building and reflected back into my scorched fucking eyeballs! The headlights from that unexpected vehicle came plowing slowly up behind me. My first thought assumed it was the owner, perhaps there was a mix up and he had given me the wrong set of house keys when I was back in the township where I'd caught the taxi. But as I watched the car pass me and pull up to the house, I spotted the silhouette of two men sitting in the vehicle. My second thought was a blind effort to look around the empty fields for some kind of weapon if need be. Once the strangers exited their vehicle, I was immediately addressed with the clinical formality of the German authorities, "Herr Knox?"
The cops, already? Who the fuck had complained about me before I'd even arrived? But no, those guys weren't your standard flat-foot beat-cop, (not that German cops walked anywhere). They were plain clothed older guys.
"Herr Knox? You speak English, yes?"
"They don't pay you the big bucks for nothing, do they," I sneered, placing my black suitcase between the house and the BMW.
"Why should I?"
The two big chaps shared a glance of seriously bewilderment.
"I didn't realize the house came with a butler and gimp. Let me guess, you wipe my ass, while it's your job to tuck me in at night."
"Excuse me, I don't think you understand."
So I crossed my arms in that truly arctic breeze, when snow actually began falling upon those awkward introductions.
"My name is Kriminalkommissar Rosswald, and this is my college, Everett." And then up came their respective ID cards. For all intents and purposes, in English, they were 'detectives', and so I will refer to them as such from henceforth. "We are here from the Stuttgart division."
"That's a hell of a commute."
"Excuse me?" These fucking guys were always so fucking polite but ludicrously incapable of grasping sarcasm.
"I tell you what, chief. Let's just see if these keys open that front door. If not, I'll be thanking you kindly for a ride the fuck out of here," I grinned against the snowflakes that were coating my shaved head. "But first things first. What exactly is it that you boys are after, and how precisely did you find me way the fuck out here?"
"We are investigating a missing person."
The building was maybe a couple-hundred-years-old but it had been thoroughly renovated within the last decade – so no coal-shoveling for this lucky little Popsicle. Shortly, after a brief inspection, and with the suggestion from Rosswald, I switched on the hot-water-system as well as the kettle; and then I removed my Earl Grey supplies from my suitcase. The ground floor was mostly an open space with the kitchen on the far side from the front door. An old wooden clock sat on the mantle above a fire place and tick-tocked loudly throughout that chilled lack of any kind of small-talk.
"Now lads, how about some common courtesy and spill the beans on how exactly you found me? All things considered, apart from the owner of this charming establishment, who I don't know beyond a random spot on a map, no other soul has any clue as to my exact location. Yet here I find myself with Tweedledum and Tweedledee. You guys arrived the very fucking moment I did. You got to admit, that's some really fucking spooky shit right there."
The two detectives in their late forties sat on the other side of the large dinning table, both cupping their tea with tilted head above their loose, frog-like throats.
"Was it my cellphone? I'm sure I switched off my GPS–"
"It was the credit-card transaction paying for this house," Rosswald croaked.
A vague smile crossed my face at their volunteered information, "Danke, danke."
Everett lifted his snout, as I opened the yellow pack of slender Leibniz, lemon cheese-cake flavored cookies.
"So who have you lost, and how are you guys expecting me to break the big case?"
"Lurlina Morgen. She was reported missed five days ago, on Monday morning, after she didn't arrive at an appointment."
"No, she is a resident of Stuttgart."
"No. Heidelberg is the closest I have ever been to Stuttgart, and that was Christmas 2006. What the fuck is there in Stuttgart that I would give two shits about?"
"You have a strange way of talking to the police," Rosswald said, sitting back and lifting his saggy chin as we locked eyes. "Perhaps the Bundesprüfstelle für jugendgefährdende Medien were accurate when they labeled you an, 'Obszönitätscharakter'"
"You remind me of the director that I worked with when I first came to this country. A big Belgium guy, good guy. Had a real hearty laugh. It's a great way to judge a person, by their laughter. How authentic it is. He wasn't technically my boss, but he understood that I was more valuable than all the other kids in the studio. It was simple math. I did more footage than everyone else combined. And still, even after the debacle in India, he secured my immediate evacuation, as well as my continued employment. I can respect that. He was willing to stick his neck on the line; not out of some selfless act of kindness bullshit, but because he appreciated the work. But even then, I never once assumed that we were friends on a personal level. That's professional respect. However, what have you two done in order for me have any kind of mutual respect beyond flashing a badge in my face?"
The two detectives became more alert in their seats.
"Who the fuck is Lurlina Morgen, and what the fuck does she have to do with me?"
"On Facebook," Rosswald stated coldly,"you know her as 'Lulu Mourning'."
I leaned back. My eyes rolling into the back of my skull as I rubbed my palms over my face.
"So you see, we have been studying your private messages," Rosswald said taking a sip of his black tea.
"Your conversations have been, as you say, explicit," Everett added.
"Oh, really? Explicit? Guess I would know, I wrote the fucking things! But I prefer to call them, as they say, gratuitous, unadulterated, and piss in the wind."
"You are aware of Lurlina's age?"
"Twenty-one, according to her driver's license. Which makes her an adult the last time I checked."
"It is the nature of these communications that concerned us. You're encouragement her self-destructive obsessions. And especially how she became fixated with the violence toward the refugees seeking asylum in Germany."
"Ah, so that's what this is about."
"The thought-crime of negativity toward the infallible refugees."
"Not at all. After reading your messages closely, neither of you spoke particularly critical of the Syrians; but you also didn't condemn the harassment of their plight. It was the violence itself that she seemed fascinated with. Lurlina appeared addicted to watching videos of ISIS executing individuals. Particularly, it was the sexual tone of your messages regarding the violence that were most alarming."
"Plight? You're the first German I've met who knows what that word means."
The two detectives didn't look amused. Rosswald then added, "Where is the Little China Embassy?"
Pausing, I glanced back and forth at the two gray-haired cops. "Isn't there some law protecting personal communications – no, no, of course not. Stupid me. Nothing's private on the internet. But what if she and I had communicated the old fashioned way, by hand-written letter, or god forbid we actually phoned each other. Well shit, then you would expect to find those letters lying around her bedroom that I'm sure you both thoroughly searched – unless we had anticipated nosy fucks going through our personal shit so we had agreed to burn our letters as soon as we read them. On the other hand, I hear you saying, if she and I had phoned each other then there would be a record on our cells or on her parent's landline – unless of course we only telephoned each other on public phones. Hell, then I guess you would have absolutely nothing to snoop through. And without any tangible evidence to go on, this is all just piss in the fucking wind."
"What are you doing out here?" Rosswald smiled calmly, looking around the well lit house. "Why haven't you told anyone, even your girlfriend, where you are going? That's a little strange, you will admit. However, now that we are here, it makes perfect sense. You're having an affair! So is Lurlina herself going to show up on the front door step any moment now, or is it some other woman?"
"Shit! You got me!" I laughed hatefully, raising both of my hands. "My girlfriend keeps telling me that I'm a terribly fucking liar. Haul me off in chains. I won't resist arrest."
"You can quit being so unhelpful."
"Ask me a straight forward question then!"
"Have you seen Lurlina Morgen recently, and do you know of her whereabouts?"
"No and no."
The snow tapped on the windows and the old clock echoed.
"You drove all this way just for those two questions? This case really must have hit a brick wall. But seriously, you guys surely don't go driving across country over every runaway little girl. Kids fucking run off all the time. She's in Rome for all I know. How is this honestly worth your time and energy?"
Detective Everett subtly nodded his head with furrowed eyebrows.
"Who did you two piss off to get assigned this case? Or... Or are her parents the rich conservative type?" Crossing my tattooed arms, I made my own speculation, "Pretty rich white German girl goes missing amidst the rape-scandal of this immigrant crisis. Merkel fears a shit-storm in the headlines. Better to hope that some pervert on the internet simply abducted her, like it used be in the good old days."
There is a theory that the universe is always talking to you but most people aren't listening, yet if you allow yourself to see the signs you can find them right in front of you. The literal-atheist screams coincidence-superstition toward such a delusion; while the spiritually-impassioned is cautious of nefarious-influence; and yet the student-psychologist categorizes such projections as symptoms of the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. Sometimes though, an omen is simply a fucking omen! Standing on the small front steps, I watched the two detectives slowly reverse their unmarked vehicle back onto the road a hundred meters away.
Squinting against the lingering snow, I slowly turned around. There was a single window either side of the front door, three windows upstairs, and a lone central window from the attic. The front of the house didn't face the driveway but toward the grassy field where a crow had flown from and straight into the window. It lay twitching on the gravel, reminding me of last weekend after I'd been to the Berlin Dom. While standing beneath the grand pillars of the Altes Museum, I had watched an enormous swarm of crows smother the dusk skies. It had caused me to wonder why it was that some birds had evolved to migrate during winter, and yet others endured the scarcity. Google would have had some succinct explanation, but I didn't want to miss such daunting splendor. I was too enthralled by that immense spectacle of a thousand howling ravens dominating the heavens as if their wings were the very fabric of night stretching over absolutely everything. I had felt no desire to pull out my phone and take a fucking photo, I enjoyed focusing of that living moment, and I wouldn't let the internet distract my awe. But on the front step of that little white house, I still wasn't sure why it was that some birds weathered the cold. I stood over the flapping crow considering that perhaps its wing was broken, or maybe it was just stunned. I didn't care. Its throes were pornography to me. Lulu would have filmed the injured bird and then e-mailed me a Quicktime. She would have done so knowing that I wouldn't have condemned her for doing so. The two detectives failed to grasp that. They were far too linear with their conclusions. To them, I was just another sicko corrupting a troubled youth. And they were totally right, of course. And with that, I happily walked back inside the toasty house filled with all that golden light.
Plugging my MP3 player into the stereo, Monster Magnet, Dig That Hole, put a devious smile on my face as I sat upon the huge sofa accompanied by my copy of Othello. It was the second work of Shakespeare that I had ever encountered at the tender age of seventeen, when I had been instantly drawn to Iago. One of the definitively formative role-models of my own youth. "Work on, My medicine, work! Thus credulous fools are caught; And many worthy and chaste dames even thus, all guiltless, meet reproach."
It was well into the small hours when I finished the book, and then heard a loud THUD come from upstairs. The place was too brightly lit to feel like a haunted house, but it was old enough to raise my left eyebrow. A second BANG, and I was up the stairs and flicking on every light switch. There were two identical bedrooms on either side of the small modern bathroom that was at the top of the stairs. All the windows were tightly locked, and there was nothing lying broken on the wooden floor. Another THUMP! It was coming from up in the attic. Oh, exciting! It had to be a ghost, because only ghosts hang out in fucking attics, because we all know that's where suicidal farmers blow their fucking brains out – according to no statistical evidence. Above the stairs was a trapdoor that took some wriggling before it swung open. I'm sorry to disappoint, but the lights were top-notch up there too. It didn't take two detectives from out of town to discover that the storm-shutter on a window had come loose. Deductive logic had banished the demons from this empty attic. This house was clean. A little dusty, but pretty fucking clean. The only thing up there was a stack of candles in a far corner of that vacant space. Opening the small window, I grabbed the shutter just as I spotted a tower beyond the surrounding forest. There was no steeple at the summit of that bleak structure, just a solid block of flat black amongst low clouds. Securing the shutter, I stepped over to the only other window on the opposite side of the timber attic. Hunched over in the small window's alcove, I saw a shallow hill above those trees at the back of the house. Retreating, I stood in the middle of the attic. Turning to my left toward the tower, I then turned to my right toward the hill. The house seemed perfectly positioned in the center.
Downstairs, I glanced out the bedroom windows; just one level down I couldn't see either landmark.
That fucking shutter had came loose again. I wasn't surprised, the latch was a rusted piece of limp shit. Despite how modern the fittings in the house were, I wondered exactly how old the original structure was. My childhood home had survived three major renovations. I had seen a photo from the 1930s of the house on an empty hillside where it had existed as a much smaller building, consisting of the kitchen and main bedroom. At some point between then and the 1970s, when my parents bought the house, it had been expanded upon with a large lounge suspended above the slope. My father had then built the downstairs and a huge balcony. Of course, since my mother sold the house, I had seen a photo of it having once again being transformed into some yuppy summer home: a forth incarnation. Human settlements are never static for long. Yet as much as we rebuild upon of the same subsiding top soil, the bones of all those dead animals are still buried deep in the back garden of my youth. Unless someone happened to go digging. Then what a find they would unearth!
In the kitchen, I found a drawer full of tools. Grabbing a nail, hammer, and a lighter, I climbed back into the attic and nailed that fucking shutter to the outside wall. Scoping up a bunch of candles, I then lit them in a circle upon the floor. I'm not a student of meditation, but I do practice indulging in psychosis. There, I cringed at a possible future where animal-rights had banned the pleasure of such a bloody sight and delicious scent as frying a steak upon pan. One culture's cuisine is another's barbaric savagery, and yet no observable reality is more ethical than any other once you find the skeletons in the closets of every civilization's birth. Why should I obey the moral laws of strangers whose vacuous warnings had never stopped me before? If I ate Lulu's anemic meat that night, how was that worse than butchering her, and how was that worse than slaughtering her, and how was that worse than sodomizing her, and how was that worse than objectifying her, and how was that worse than seducing her, and how the fuck was that any worse than knowing that she even existed in the first place?! When I eat a schnitzel (of any kind), I feel fucking fantastic. There is no moral crime if you repudiate the ethical dogma of giants in favor of your own experiential fucking conclusions.
SATURDAY 27th FEBRUARY 2016
I woke up late, because
I forgot how much I loved to sleep alone. After coffee, I took a stroll so
that I might fathom the scope of my environment. On my left, the highway had
the odd bit of traffic, and once I had gone a few minutes straight out the
front door into that field of grass, I turned and found the little white house
gleaming brilliantly in the daylight. At the edge of the field was a moss-coated
wooden fence holding back the brown and white speckled trunks of the forest.
Onward I went in search of that tower. The woods were easy to pass through,
as there were no shrubs, only dead leaves between the widely spaced trees.
I loved that smell of damp wood. My thoughts returned to that of Lulu and
the trickery of the internet. She had found me via my art six months ago.
Just another curious kid. I remembered her first profile picture where she
wore her brown hair slicked back and into a tight bun; her cute face hid behind
large, thin-framed glasses; while she was dressed in a snug, beige trench-coat
and enormous scarf. Lulu was, by all accounts, perfectly lovely and genuinely
so. She was perhaps too polite for my kind of virtual interactions. Though
the cops weren't kidding about her interest in violent content. But so fucking
what?! The other night, I saw a video of ISIS cutting an old man's head off,
and I was fucking bored! After all, what did Schopenhauer say, "Life
has no intrinsic worth, but is kept in motion merely by desire and illusion."
Lulu's own infatuation with conflict was not repressed, denied, nor abnormal.
She embraced her fascination. She owned it, and had even dubbed her denomination,
The Devotion To Demiurge. And she would castigated herself to this lesser
god while she masturbated in front of me on Skype. She was empowered because
she empowered herself.
It hadn't felt like I had been walking for any time at all when the trees parted above a small gorge where a shallow creak crept below. Directly across the broken landscape were the foundations to that blackened tower. From where I stood, it looked like a six-story structure with only a small ground floor wing crumbling to my left with half a dozen arched windows. The place was a ruin but it definitely didn't resemble a church, more like the remains of a keep from a collapsed castle that was now half swallowed my creepers. The creak was only dribbling, but it was still wide enough to revoke the idea of getting any closer to those looming fortifications. Besides, I had work to do. I hadn't come out to this geographical isolation for my health. I had two scripts to write. My Terminator pitch had again been put on hold while my day-job had kept my idle hands busy with commercial animation. I had laid out the first draft, the basic three act script was done, and I had already begun the longer second draft of act one. I had needed to get out of Berlin and away from too many personal tensions so I could focus, but of course that was lunacy – I couldn't escape myself!
My predilection toward the original Terminator film began young. A reverence toward the unstoppable force of death. I had seen it as a cautionary tale, and the underlying message was one of human tragedy. That was what had attracted me, it was the concept. Like my Alienated pitch from 2011, I had no intention on focusing on past characters, it was the setting that had potential. With Alienated, it was centered around those primal human concerns of extreme isolation, the fear of the dark, and being trapped in a hostile environment. It's the simplest ideas that inspire me, however, the more violent the better.
As I stepped out of the woods into the open field, I shook my head contemptuously. I knew my script for a film was just as futile as anything I did. No one would give a fuck about it. So why was I really out here? Because, like what Camus said about the myth of Sisyphus, I enjoyed my endless toiling. I loved to write, draw, and expel the monstrosities in my head. Self-indulgence was a good enough reason for me to do any-fucking-thing at all – but then I spotted several figures in the distance to my left. They soon saw me too, and we all continued toward the house. There were four in the group. Local kids. They passed by the house about twenty yards ahead of me. All of them scowling. The only boy in the group couldn't stop staring as I stood outside the front door, glaring straight back at that scrawny fucking rut. I didn't unlock the door until they crossed the highway. Creeping out people was something I was famous for.
I spent the day working on the two scripts. The second one being part two of my picture book 'Uncle Fingers'. I sat at the dinning table looking out over the fields, muttering words that rhymed, when I suddenly grinned; I'd finally become a raving maniac talking to myself out in the woods.
While pouring another coffee, I glanced past my laptop, over the stereo that was playing Ken Mode, Blessed, and outside to where a man was standing in the middle of the field. His arms were to his side in a dominant stance. Sipping on my sweet coffee, I slowly approached the front window. He was an African in a scruffy jersey and jeans. I knew he could see me, so we just perpetuated the stand-off. It wasn't until I saw another guy step out of the woods that I placed my cup upon the windowsill – and then suddenly I knew exactly what I had to do.
Opening the front door, I walked out into that winter air and moved below the window where my cup was still steaming. There I picked up the dead crow from last night and turned toward that distant man. He was unmoved, but the second person had returned into the shadows of woods. Holding the big black bird straight out, I spread its silky wings in both of my hands. If I had a shotgun I would have chewed on some tobacco and snarled in my best Alabama accent, "You'd best get off my land." But all I had was a dead crow. Some weapons, however, work wonders when the target is the unconscious fear of your opponent. Placing the bird on the neat gravel that bordered the little white house, I proceeded drawing in the dirt with my finger tips. Even heathens can comprehend the message behind Enochian warnings. So I welcomed this intruder to come a little closer. Come and take a look at what desecration I had just made for him. Come closer so that my voodoo could soak into his fucking nervous system. With blood on my hands, I waved bye-bye to the stranger as I casually walked back inside – locking the door behind.
After I washed up in the kitchen sink, I tucked the claw hammer into my back pocket. Finishing my coffee, I found the black guy was then standing only a few paces from the edge of gravel. He was leaning cautiously toward the mutilated crow, though his posture was spring-loaded and ready to high-tail it back the way he had come. I got a good clear look at the guy. Real cola-colored skin, and looking like he was living rough. He could have very possibly been one of those from that massive influx of refugees that everyone kept complaining about (complaining regardless of if they were for or against the refugees). Seriously though, if the immigrants had already walked all the way to Germany, it wasn't that much of a stretch of the imagination to suppose that some had continued this far north. I eyeballed him one last time, and he gradually backed the fuck away. If the little white house had a porch with a rocking-chair, I would have totally sat on it and watched that guy go while I polished my gun. It seemed the older I got the more of a hillbilly witch-doctor I became. But then I smirked at my own reflection in the glass. Who the fuck was I to judge this guy? This wasn't my property, this wasn't my homeland, and I wasn't even an American hick suffering from delusions of an inbred heritage. Even out there, I couldn't avoid the social politics of the time. Perhaps I could simplify the situation into: the essential need to assert one's own personal boundaries. But then I heard the voice of the regressive-left declaring that there shouldn't be any borders of any kind at all! So then, did that make me right-wing? But if I was sincerely right-wing, then surely I too should get the fuck out this foreign land? So I must have been a liberal at heart, as I obviously supported globalization. But I didn't believe in equality, so then I had to be a capitalist pig! Yet I wasn't wealthy enough, which meant I had to have supported the communist 99%. Though, I fucking loathed hippies, or were they called third-wave-feminists these days? But naturally my penis made me a rape-advocate, which explained why I liked to fuck black chicks: so that I could assert my racist misogyny. Although, if I fucked black chicks, didn't that prove that I loved all colors? But you see, no matter what you do, any contrary argument could be made to condemn your motives. Yet you're never wrong if you know how to apply the Socratic-method correctly. Or then again, were you never right?
Those kids later returned. They were looking cranky as they gathered around the dead crow. Slowly rising from the table, I watched them kick gravel at the bird before drifting closer to the house. Opening the front door, I found that they had just continued past the house. So I scanned the field ahead, though, there hadn't been any sign of the black guy for hours. Turning toward the departing kids, I speculated that they were probably on their way back home, wherever the fuck that was out there in that overcast countryside. The trees then reminded me of the migration of crows, or their lack of. Why did some trees lose their leaves and others kept them all year round? That time I felt that urge to switch on Mr. Internet, but then the fourteen-year-old boy glanced back and squealed once he realized I was watching them. The group spun and everyone stood perfectly still. Hissing in Deutsch amongst themselves, I heard one of the three ratty girls in a hoody whimper, "Slender man."
Hesitantly, the four kids backed off along that narrow stretch of land between the field of grass and the field of dirt. Eventually they disappeared into the trees, returning the way they had originally come. There, I took note of a small shed enshrouded by the edge of the forest. Lingering for a quite a while in front of the little white house, I had found myself distracted by the nasty snout on one of those bitchy little brats who had reminded me of the-most-hated-girl-I-knew. I had known her for nearly three years, though I had always been curious as to why this one particularly little specimen had inspired so much animosity from such a broad spectrum of people from a wide array of social groups. We had first met at an exhibition where we were chatting with an extraordinary Spanish artist. I had assumed that the pretty blond with big eyes, up-turned nose, weak chin, and dressed in a black Victorian overcoat was a model for the aforementioned exhibiting artist. However, she was a fellow creative. Now, let's not act coy, we all know that my crass agenda was only interested in working its way into her tight young orifices. Once the distraction of sex and sodomy had been taken care of, it was undeniable how talented she really was, though, she lacked direction. Her parents were both success stories within the art world, so it was no wonder that nepotism paved her career straight out of high school. I don't like the privilege-argument, because anyone using it smacks of envy; and the reality is, some are just fucking luckier than others. If we all looked deep down inside ourselves, we too would take advantage of any privileges at our disposal. Unless, you seek to build character by rejecting unconditional benefits. Regardless, almost immediately I noticed the hatred come gushing toward her from multiple angles. At first I shrugged it off as people being jealousy. But after a couple of years of introducing her to various social circles, I could unequivocally confirm that she really was the-most-hated-girl-I-knew. I understood how most paranoid females relentlessly worried about what everyone else said about them behind their backs; but being the charming prick that I am, I had always reassured them that everyone loved their asses. Yet, time and again, I would learn that the-most-hated-girl-I-knew had in fact been right about all her worries. They truly did hate her. It had gotten so bad that people would question why the fuck I was hanging out with her. I had no tolerance for being told whom I should and should not socialize with. I've never required the validation from one set of friends before I could befriend another. Yet the amount of condemnation for that one particular female was fucking ridiculous! So I began testing those that would so viciously expressed their disdain toward her. I would invite the-most-hated-girl-I-knew to parties and events where I would then watch how others reacted. Naturally they all put up the small-talk-front, the socially polite custom of faked smiles with fading interest. But given enough of these observations, I could no longer ignore the general irritation felt by everyone who had interacted with her. The only parallel analogy to describe people's opinion toward my own friendship with her, was like when I told people that I actually owned two albums from Medina. At first they frowned and laughed, and then they realized I was serious, and they looked appalled, followed by a statement that went along the lines of, "Bruce, I love you but you're a fucking idiot sometimes." Yet I maintained my rebuttal of, "Fuck off!" I would listen to whatever the fuck I wanted, just as I would hang out with whomever the fuck I liked. I was free in all the ways you were not. I was not embarrassed by their politics, nor was I dumbfounded by the non sequitur presumptions coming out of the mouths of my friends. For I had no interest in limiting myself to closed-communities with their echo-chambers of pandering yes-men. The internet was a prime example of this kind of one-sided friendship-conditioning. But I wanted wildly abusive ideas, radical thought, and the voice of polemics permeating my sponge of a thought-process. Without truly free dialectic inquiry the conversation stagnates and becomes incestuous and fucking boring! You would think that all these Social Justice Gestapo who live with their heads up their ass would gasp the concept that their shit stinks just as repugnant as every other asshole. And yet, I still want to associate with them – all of them! I want backwater racists as friends, I want vegan fitness fanatics as friends, I want metal-head atheists as friends, I want catholic mommy-boy fagots as friends, I want junkie scene-climbers as friends, I even want "Nazi-gangster-Jews" as my fucking friends. I want to interact with anyone who communicates concepts beyond parroting the Buzzfeed party-line of: All white people are pieces of shit. Perhaps white-Americans ('American' being the operative word there) were in fact just like how the awful writer/director of 'The Intern' portrayed them as: metro-sexual, spineless sons of crackers. But don't marginalize the other side of the argument with such safe-zone victim-thinking. I want paradoxical influences from unreasonable sources to affect my perception, no matter how unsettling or counter-intuitive. Never stop questioning what is real. And that, ultimately, makes me a great fucking humanitarian! But that's a lie. I only want to bask in the misery of every fuck's pathetic little life. I seek no betterment of mankind. I hope only for the extended suffering of you all. Let me scrub my genitals with the phlegm that you spit down on my thought-crime as you rant with the altruistic-egalitarian-freedom-fighting-ethos of a every other Sub-Saharan dictator. We are all egos at war with each other, just as we are at war with our own fucking thoughts! And so therefore, I find myself adhering to that nugget of wisdom from Hegel, "Learn from ideas you dislike." That earlier quote from Pantera, brings up the the whole melodrama that escalated after Philip H. Anselmo made a White-Power salute on stage during a gig. However, I remember a time when being in a band was about saying, fuck all the judgments of others! I joined a fucking band so that I could do whatever the fuck I wanted, no matter how fucking offensive, just for the fuck of it! But now bands are so fucking pussy-whipped by public opinion that rock finally is fucking dead! Doesn't anyone recall when Sid Vicious wore a swastika T-shirt? Should we also retro-actively fucking crucify his career too? Do kids today only start bands so that they can preach how to be moral, upstanding citizens? Bill Hicks put it simply, "That's what we want isn't it, government approved rock and roll." Oh, shit. I just made more than one reference to the word 'white', while being white myself; that's a big no-no if I ever want to be friends with anyone ever again. Racism is a topic in today's anti-shame-but-love-to-blame climate that stigmatizes anyone till they're in their fucking grave. There is no born-again-cure for this label. Even after logical persuasion changes a formerly racist individual's stance, they will always be tainted. Thus, Anselmo has just committed professional suicide, much like Mel did. But who are these holier than thou iPhone-critics with impeccable stature, because I have never meet a flawless cunt. It may be disconcerting when your principles are under attack, but the child that's kept out of harms way grows up sickly. The intellect needs conflict as much as the immune systems needs to roll around in raw shit. And so it seems that the-most-hated-girl-I-knew, was also one of those easily offended offenders. For example, there was a situation a few months ago, when she had just rented a studio space in an artist community. As I helped her carry her heavy art supplies up to the top floor of a look-a-like squat, I wondered how starving artists could afford a flat as well as a studio? Oh, wait, that's right; first-world artists don't starve for their art anymore. Afterward, we went to met her two British friends that also had a room in that espresso-scented, slum-dog-fashioned complex. The-most-hated-girl-I-knew was noticeably hesitant as we neared the couple's room. Clearly she held the status of those two in high personal regard. I had always enjoyed watching people squirm like this. For she wasn't the first friend uneasy about introducing others to my facetious antics. Right outside their door, she reminded me one last time to self-censor my conduct. Man, I was baited with impossible expectations! Weirdly enough though, the guy had worked with one of my old directors back in the 90s. Small world. The couple however, were feeling rather lonely since moving to Berlin. So I kindly offered to take them out and show the around, like I had done when the-most-hated-girl-I-knew had first come to town. Seriously, I'm a fucking saint! But that acquaintance didn't last more than a few days. Shortly after they had added my Facebook, they deleted me, which in today's Stalinist understanding, means the legitimacy of you're entire existence has effectively been disavowed. Dissent was dead on the kangaroo-court of social media. I wept for Rosa Luxemburg. So it was no shock that a few days later the-most-hated-girl-I-knew wrote to me, "You're plain ugly on the inside. I have no time and space in my life for your shit anymore. Not even for mindless entertainment."
Soon another friend went on an impassioned rant about the-most-hated-girl-I-knew, spieling off all the aspects that they completely despised about her. The detail was extreme. From her obnoxious condescending attitude, to her contradictory claims of rebellion, to her unoriginal aesthetic appearance. Listened intently to this lengthy berating, I was still intrigued as to why she particularly triggered this hostility in so many people. Perhaps on a spectrum of personality and physical traits, she encapsulated just the right amount of obnoxious-contradictory-unoriginality that sparked everyone's bile. I deduced this reaction was due to two factors present in the haters: both envy and disgust. The envy of those who wanted what she had (for example, looks and wealth). And the disgust toward her for reflecting the elements that these same people disowned about themselves (for example: irrational insecurity). This envy and disgust was the feedback loop of: THE INHERENT HATRED OF HUMANITY. I believe hate drives all human emotion. Negative emotions are always the dominant. Whether hate for what we have been, hate for what we are, or hate for what we will become. Love for anything is powered by the hatred of losing that love. Hate is the true constant of humanity, not love. The most popular delusion we tell ourselves is that we are better than mere hateful beasts. We aren't! We are all hateful. Love, hate's supposed counter-weight, is easily turned on its self-righteous head. Othello murdered his beloved based on little reason, and that exact same Shakespearean suspicion and betrayal happens all the time in relationships. Hatred, however, is never easily forsaken, forgiven, or forgotten. The Freudian pleasure-principle is said to be oppressed by the reality-principle – but the key factor keeping the pleasure-principle in check is the 'hatred' of the reality-principle. Aversion outweighs attraction. There would be anarchy if all mankind conducted itself impulsively and did whatever we wanted all the time. Hatred toward life keeps life alive and very fucking hateful for doing so. Hate balances us. And then, whether we support the left or the right, we look for the appropriate means to vent our hatred, even in the name of compassion. We will back one side of a dispute for the indulgence of hating the contrary argument. Love has consistently been proven fleeting. Love will only temporarily numb the hate. Like a narcotic, love will dumb down intelligence. Love will even ease the suffering of the masses but purely as the illusion of a carrot on a stick, it only retards our perspective in the short-term. The external population's hatred is perpetual, and we so hate being hateful that we run back to love as soon as possible, but love is always fading and quickly replaced by copious amounts of hatred. Inevitably, hatred wins in the end, every time! Hate has always been there. Hatred toward everything is what compels us to do anything. Sex, hunger, and the need to belong are incomplete instincts without hatred's fuel motivating us away from their opposition: the hate of celibacy, the hate of starvation, and the hate of loneliness. But you have to keep in mind, when I say hatred drives everyone, by 'everyone' I mean 'me'. You are just a hateful part of myself. And I alone am the inherent hatred of humanity!
SATURDAY 27th FEBRUARY 2016
In the late afternoon,
I needed to stretch my legs so I headed around and across the field of dirt.
The forest was an equal distance from this side of the little white house,
with that small hill bulging behind the line of trees. The woods, however,
stayed clear of the small-stadium-size lump in the landscape. While crossing
that expanse of dust, I questioned what was the point of owning this chunk
of land and leaving it vacant? Maybe it had recently been tilled and seeds
were only freshly sown? Or maybe these were pastures and the livestock happened
to be visiting a bolt-gun to the head at the moment? I didn't fucking know,
I wasn't a farmer. There probably was a completely logical reason for that
waste of space. Every process of production involved some aspect that, to
the layman, appeared nonsensical. Why do some birds migrate and some trees
lose their leaves while others don't, seems inconsistant, but that only illuminated
a hole in my own mortal understanding. The black stranger from earlier then
puzzled me again. Unconsciously, I reached for the back of my belt and stroked
the claw hammer that I had brought along with me. Was I wrong bearing arms?
Not at all! This had nothing to do with the whole refugee horseshit. If you
ever saw any unknown person staring at you from outside your residence, you
must take action. If he was passing by, then he would have kept going. If
he wanted something innocent, then he would have come closer and said something.
Strangers in cities are common place, but out here in the middle of nowhere,
every encounter brought the defenses to the fore. Vigilance was necessary
when you only have yourself to rely on against the wild. Yourself a claw fucking
hammer that is.
Once I made it to the summit of the hill, I found that it was made up of horizontal chunks of stone, and I finally got a decent view of the surrounding territory. The country was flat as fuck and smeared with infinite woods, farms, and evening mist. Facing the little white house, I glanced to my right where those kids had returned – there was no town steeple or any human smoke signals of any kind. To my left, was the highway and a large murky lake not too far beyond another patch of woods. Scanning ahead past the house, I focused on the tower. Moving to my left a bit, I began lining up the attic windows with the distant ruin. That's when I noticed I was stepping between several odd rocks. The grass on the rugged hill was shaggy, and I was standing in the midst of a cluster of standing-stones. The rocks were only a couple of feet high, were all uneven and uncut, and about ten meters in diameter. Examining those dark boulders, I uncovered even more that had fallen and were overgrown. And then I looked up and saw a light coming from within the fucking attic!
Rushing back to the house, I was glad that I had taken the foresight to hide my laptop after today's unwelcome guests; but that was beside the point, someone had invaded my fucking space! Either the black guy, those fucking kids, or who the fuck knows. I was sweating in my overcoat as I charged across the field of dirt, and then I noticed how there weren't any other windows of this backside of the house, except for the attic's. No light came from upstairs as I reached the front door. My hammer was in hand while I keyed the lock. Scanning around for any forced points of entry, I quietly scaled the stairs. Nothing seemed out of place and everything was silent – other than that fucking clock. The trapdoor overhead still was closed. Once I was sure that there was no one hiding in the bedrooms, I stormed up into the attic – but there was no one there. Well, shit. It had rapidly gotten a lot darker since I had hurried back to the house, and as I stared out at the hill, it had become sheer black against the haze of dusk. About to double-check downstairs, I stopped dead in my tracks. I saw the light again. It was coming from the tower! One of the tower windows was shimmering with an amber glow. The optical illusion from the alignment of landmarks was then comically apparent. But who the fuck was in the tower?
The creak was almost dried up as I switched off my tiny pen-light torch and peered across at a small gathering of people sitting around to a campfire below the tower. At that point, I made the bold assessment that these guys were in fact real life Syrian refugees, based on the admittedly tenuous evidence being that they simply looked like the incidental background characters in every news story covering the immigrant trend-sympathy. As I stood there watching those sombre folk, a realization came to me: when I had stood here this morning, I had done exactly the same thing that I had accused the black guy of doing to me. And I was doing it again right fucking now. Shaking my head at my presumptuous neurosis, I was in the motions of leaving those guys to their own business, until I heard a violin (or some such Middle-Eastern instrument). Several old men next to the campfire began singing in Arabic. I couldn't be sure of what language exactly, but it was beautiful. Night had utterly arrived as I glared up at the tower. The melancholy song was too tragic to ignore, so I climbed down the embankment, jumped across the stream, and then edged my way around the trees from the side of the tower. I wasn't exactly hiding but no one noticed me, or at least no one cared that I stood only a few feet from the fire. There were five middle-aged-to-old men. I saw a couple others huddling further away. Once the song ended, they murmured something and then all laughed. Laughter, humans most primitive sound. Dogs bark. Cats meow. Humans laugh. It's our animal vocalization. Birds will tweak the moment that they break out of their shell, and so we laugh long before abstract ideas like language come to us. Part of me wanted to sit, listen to them sing, and simply enjoy the campfire. But I was not one of them. And this was not the time nor the place for syncretism. For laughter wasn't enough, without articulate language, to bridge certain misunderstandings that could very possibly arise. After all, my shaved head and tattoos painted me as the stereotypical portrait of those whom had sort to persecute these people the very moment that they had arrived in Europe. Prudence suggested that I didn't push my luck, and I began backing away. A glimpse of flickering light coming from within an entrance to the tower, however, drew me inside. Fuck it, discretion be damned! Creeping into the depth, I made my way up a staircase of ancient stone. Another small campfire crackled in a corner of a large chamber, though, no one attended this one. I headed further up the stairs, only to find the next level bricked up, which didn't add up. The light I had seen from the hill and from the attic had to have come from higher than this first floor – a screaming man then erased my rational investigation in a fucking instant! Clenching my teeth, I twisted on those dead-end stairs and found that black guy howling at me from another doorway. Raising both my hands in a non-threatening gesture, I restrained the urge to grab my claw hammer. Passively heading down the stairs, I was followed and screamed at by the black guy the whole way. The group by the campfire looked too tired for the rantings of the black guy. Again, I kept my palms open and mouth shut. A few more gypsy-like guys stumbled over, and that's when the black guy's words must have registered with the rest of them. Suddenly they all lurched back, cursing and distressed. I have no clue as to what had been said but it was pretty fucking serious. My claw hammer wasn't going to do jack-shit against this number, so fleeing the fuck out of there was running through my head – but they all beat me to the punchline! Just like that, every one of those exhausted looking men shot off like a bunch of cats that had just seen a cucumber. Whatever the black guy had said, it freaked them out so badly that they had even abandoned their violin, possibly the only material possession of any value that they had saved after everything. Left alone with the campfire, I didn't want to sit by myself. The violin looked sad as I stared down at it. For a moment I was about to stomp it into a million fucking pieces and then kick the fucking thing into the flames. But I didn't. I just walked away, back through the woods, and hating everything.
Returning to the little white house in the freezing wind, I slowly climbed into the attic and no longer saw any light coming from the tower. That familiar rage then overcame my temper. Visions of Lulu choked, stabbed, and broken by my hands, only served to frustrate my contempt for that fucking place. Yet there was nothing more satisfying than bringing a beautiful female to her knees – literally and figuratively.
I had fallen asleep in the attic, and awoke with my left shoulder feeling like I'd been bitten by a fucking mule. A sound had caught my attention. A scrapping noise coming from downstairs. Tilting my head so that I could eliminate the background groans of the old house, I then heard a series of miniscule thumps. Footsteps? They came again. Footsteps getting louder. Coming up the stairs. From where I lay, I slithered on my belly across the solid floorboards of the attic and moved up to the edge of the trapdoor. Peering down into the ebony and indigo, it was no shock that I recognized those four adolescents, even though they were all wearing black balaclavas. None of them had noticed the open trapdoor nor its extended ladder in the dark as they spread out into the two bedrooms. Either they were looking to do some thievery, or try and murder me in my sleep. I couldn't have asked for a better gift from the gods. Watching them whisper, I could hear the anxiety in their trembling breath as they eventually accumulated between the empty bedrooms: standing above the stairs and directly fucking below my spiteful little eyes. Without the slightest warning, I reached down with both of my arms and grabbed the closest kid by their fucking face! I screamed like I wanted them dead! They all screamed like they had just shit a burning hot curry into their pants! The kid in my grasp lurched the struck out in terror, actually shoving another kid down the stairs as I ripped the mask clean off. She struggled like a spastic trying to swim with electric eels, but her ponytail was caught within the balaclava in my grip. The horrified screams from those other little rodents was fucking hilarious as they crashed downstairs and out the front door. How quickly they deserted their own. The remaining child thrashed like a chainsaw on a fishing line as I yanked her clean off her two tiny feet by her hair alone. Lifting her up through the trapdoor, I loved her panic like an amphetamine. For you must always remember, those little criminals were guilty of breaking-and-entering. I could openly bludgeon her to death, and then claim it was in self-defense. Her hands then caught the ladder and she frantically tried tearing herself free as she screeched. Twisting in my grasp, we came face to face as I sneered into her abhorrence, "I'm going to cut your fucking head off!"
And as she squealed like a fuck, I grinned and dropped her! She landed with a gasp, a snap, and a clattering as she tumbled straight down the staircase. Jumping after her, I watched that little girl shriek and crawl for the open front door. I could hear her friends crying her name outside, and as I watched them all run off into the night I couldn't help laughing with total fucking glee. A month ago, I had been at a freak-show where one of the performers drove metal spikes all the way through this arms and face right in front of us. My photo was taken at the time while I watched on enthralled. It was later commented on in regards to just how abnormal my psychotic grin had been while enjoying such a ghastly display. I had scoffed at the remark. The pleasure of sadism was nothing to be ashamed of.
Walking after the kids, in order to make sure that they had really fucked off, I approached that humble tool shed amongst the trees. The door was bolted shut, but I soon found the key on the set to the house, and I peered inside. It was impossible to see fuck all in there, but I did spot several large bags of cement powder. There was a weird hollow tone to that shed as I glanced around the obscurity. Returning to the house, I knew that I needed to keep my pen-light on me at all times. A weapon in the wild is of little use if I couldn't actually see what exactly I was dealing with in the dark. Rain then came gushing over those morbid fields just as I stepped inside. My pace slowed to a standstill in the center of the lounge. Those bags of cement would be perfect for coating the mutilated remains of Lulu. Plastering individual bones until they set into unrecognizable configurations would make an adequate disguise before I dumped them in that lake beyond the highway. That should be enough for nature to sweep them under the carpet of: THE GREAT INDIFFERENCE OF THE UNIVERSE. That most high force that leaves children to starve to death and cancer to spread throughout otherwise healthy systems. It was everywhere, that all-seeing eye of nature's eternal indifference. It was right there with me in that little white house. It was outside and surrounding and consuming everything as above so below. That endless emptiness that filled even the spaces between molecules. The inescapable indifference of the external world that would inevitably erase everything about me from the history of existence. It was only the inherent hatred of humanity that fought off the great indifference of the universe. Resisting the smothering hands of pacifism was the will to live! Live hatefully and proud of it! Fuck this entire cunting universe with its designs on my destruction! It would undeniably conquer all things, but to defy is to be! I had woken up abruptly early one morning two months ago, with a repetitive confusion about my understanding the expanding universe. Specifically the 'acceleration' of the expanding universe. It wasn't my usual morning head-space where I mostly lingered upon my violent dreams. However, my mind was rattling with the Big Band theory, that idea where everything had been initially condensed into an infinity small and hot space. Once the Big Bang happened it all expanded at a ridiculous rate, and then it all cooled creating galaxies full of stars and planets – and here we are. According to the observed red-shift taking place, we know that the universe is not only still expanding, but it's speeding up. That's all been established, but the confusion that awoke me so rudely was the issue: why after the 'inflation' period did the expansion slow down and then start speeding up again? I knew that dark-energy was what was causing this second-acceleration by pushing space itself apart. So as I lay in bed in those small hours, I wondered if the universe had already died? Was this second-acceleration in fact the universe exploding? After the first expansion the universe had reached an equilibrium – but then had it all gone POP?! Had the universe already died, but due to its size we couldn't tell yet? They say that as the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate, eventually all the other galaxies will be traveling away from our galaxy faster than the speed of light, and once those other galaxies travel beyond the horizon of the observable universe, it will appears as if our galaxy is alone in dead space. That's what I had understood about the future of the universe. But it bothered me and I couldn't sleep. For if you pushed that idea further, given a long enough time-line wouldn't the very expanding space in our galaxy, solar system, and the very fucking atoms in our bodies also get pulled apart too? Despite the romantic argument that gravity might hold us together, eventually everything will be torn apart! We'll all POP like the proverbial balloon of the universe. I couldn't sleep with that in mind, so spent the morning searching on-line for lectures on the subject of the accelerating universe... And then I discovered that this was not an original idea of mine. It's already an established hypothesis, appropriately titled, the Big Rip theory. Therefore I was right, this second-acceleration is the death of us all! We are already dead and the universe doesn't give a fuck!
SUNDAY 28th FEBRUARY 2016
I woke just before sunrise
and sipped on a coffee as I stared out the front windows at that field covered
in a sinister mist. The small muddy footprints on the kitchen counter top
had given away where the kids had crawled in last night. I located a loose
bolt on the kitchen window lock, and then with nail and hammer, I secured
it shut. Washing the surface clean of dirt and the recently spilled cement
dust, I couldn't stop staring at the blender in the corner as I made a second
Crossing the highway, I walked over another open field of cropped grass before entering a thin section of trees. The lake was golden in the morning light. Completely encompassed by the forest, it looked like a thousand other insignificant lakes in Germany. The only sign of human intervention was a small wooden jetty some distance off to my left. There wasn't any kind of path around the edge, but the trees were just as sparsely positioned again, so I easily navigated the terrain. My fingers were dry after mixing the cement late last night, and I was fucking annoyed that it hadn't already set by now. Maybe I had used too much water in the mix? As I strolled down the old jetty, I suddenly wasn't sure if cement would even last underwater, especially if it hadn't even dried properly. Best to investigate the on internet before the next time. That was when a nice brown dog with a white chest came running down the jetty wagging his tail after me. An old guy in a fedora with a walking cane then emerged from the woods and waved cordially as he approached.
"Morgen," the sixty-year-old nodded, as he kept his distance on the solid jetty.
"Did your vehicle breakdown?"
"Strange spot for sightseeing, isn't it."
"I like it here, but this isn't exactly on the tourist map."
"You're point being?"
"Well, then. I suggest you just keep clear of the house on the other side of the street."
"Just for the best."
"You from around here?"
"Yeah. Well, Zurich. But have a farm back there."
"What's wrong with the little white house then?"
"Just not very welcoming inhabitants, you could say."
"You would know?"
"Where's your car? I can't see it from here."
"Came by taxi."
"What? Why? How are you getting out of here?"
"I'm staying at the house."
The dog glanced awkwardly back and forth between his owner and myself.
"So why are you here if it's nothing special?" I finally asked.
The old chap ran his palm over his white beard, "Ah, well."
I sighed and took a deep breath of the chilled air, relaxing to the sound of the water against the jetty.
"I had enough of city life. Too much drama for the likes of guy like me."
"Drama? In Zurich? In Switzerland?"
"Yeah, we're not all believers in neutrality," he smiled, as we both stared out toward the open lake. "Was a professor of biology at the University. Had to leave. No, I mean, I was obliged to leave after too many of my private views differed from those of the senior staff."
"Were you teaching creationism in class?"
"No! Not at all," he chuckled. "I've always followed the guidelines of my profession to the letter. Unfortunately, keeping your private opinions out of the workplace is trickier than I had expected. But that's the politics of human nature."
"What are you, a philosopher-farmer?"
"It's less bother than trying to make it as a philosopher-king."
"Yeah, fuck Plato and his elitism."
"Indeed! Fuck Plato!"
"And did you fuck a student too?"
"If only it was that simple."
"Hell is not without its bureaucracy."
"And it's bio-diversity and hierarchies too."
"You damn contrarians and your worldly experience."
"Well, like Montaigne once said, "We are double in ourselves. What we believe we disbelieve, and we cannot rid ourselves of what we condemn.""
"We are a curious animal, and that gets us in trouble."
"And then gets us fired."
"And then we both end up fleeing to Germany."
"For the weather."
"You like farming instead of teaching?"
"Oh, yes. Very much so. I'm far too old to make a fuss over my own ludicrous notions about the world anymore. It's not a crusade worth the effort. I just look out for my own well being these days."
"You a fan of Thoreau's self-reliance? "Insist on yourself, never imitate.""
"Naturally. There is no one to impress but yourself. But you're a young man, adhering to "Libido dominandi" as Augustine put it. Your desire to dominate."
"Not so young," I grumbled, sinking my leather-gloved hands deep into the pockets of my black overcoat. "Got to remember, men too righteous end up crucified. While men too cautious never do anything. It's the tactician who's the man that wins the fucking war."
"Well, I'm no tactician."
"So what did you do then, spike the university's drinking water with DMT?"
"No, no, no. Nothing so entertaining. I merely had a few pet theories about certain unexplained aspects of the reality. But that's not the sort of reckless nonsense that a respectable professor should harbor... Even after hours over a few too many drinks. Some ideas one must keep to oneself and never let them see the light of day."
"I don't know. If you stifle an idea you only push it underground where it can gestate and become malignant. However, counter to that, if you foster an idea you nurture it into unfettered growth where it can latch onto like-minded ideas, but the thing is, it too can also metastasize. Either way it blossoms to fruition in uncontrollable good or bad ways. I really don't believe there's one absolutely right course of action when it comes to channeling human potential. Sometimes shit just happens."
"Sounds similar to those arguing for either nature or nurture. More often than not, though, it's a balance of both, not just one or the other."
"So what got you fired?"
"Oh, you know. That old problem with evolution."
"You mean, that Darwin was actually taking the piss when he wrote about it, but everyone took him seriously, so he just rolled with it?"
"Evolved life is rare. Rarer than we think. Yes, the planet is brimming with organisms, large and small – but. But I ask you, why don't new gene-pools spontaneously arise on Earth all the time? We live on this planet in the Goldilocks-zone, not too hot, not to cold, just right, which is what they say enabled our gene-pool to get started in the first place – but. But again, why aren't there other completely new forms of life springing into being and competing against our own Hillis-plot?"
"Because that initial event that sparked the primordial slime into life took more than just the right environmental conditions. And besides, haven't they found life thriving in some acids and miles under ice? So fuck the Goldilocks-zone!"
"Exactly! Thus, life is much more unique than we already take for granted."
"And that got you fired? Seems a tad bit harsh."
"Well, what do you know about dark-matter?"
"Huh, funny. I only really learned about dark-energy and dark-matter a couple of month ago. And that no one really knows what the fuck it is. Dark-energy is causing the accelerating expansion of the universe, by making more of itself the more that there is – somehow. While dark-matter behaves, gravitationally, like regular everyday-matter, except that we can't actually see it. Right?"
"So you were fired for being a heretical biologist because you crossed fields and started talking about astronomy?"
"Ha! Almost," he then pulled out a thin cigar and lit up. "I really crossed the line when I suggested that dark-matter could possibly be the unseen world that we tend to call gods and devils."
"Appropriated named then."
"What do you mean?"
"That's all that got you fired?"
"Well, that and the fact that I told it to three students – who I was fucking at the time."
"Three?! Bravo! It was fucking worth it!"
And we shared a snigger as the dog watched the ripples all around.
"What are you really doing out here? Most people around these parts turn their back on me the moment they hear my accent."
"I'm not one of them."
"So we don't share common beliefs."
"I don't give a shit. I'll enjoy anyone's outlandish ideas without necessarily agreeing with them."
"That's a dangerous position to take. Remember what you said about being a tactician. Sometimes you have to overtly stand on one side or the other, or else everyone will ostracize you. History doesn't look kindly upon the pacifist."
"Pacifism only exists as a bi-product from the excesses of a secure civilization. But a Machiavellian-tactician is not what I would call a pacifist."
"And what does the civilization-organism care about the individual as long as you play the bills-game? But in order to pay the bills, you need gainful employment, which requires fitting in. Your time is up to you to fill, unless those whom employ you no longer find you fitting in. Once you don't play the game properly, you have a problem – with everything! And mark my words, civilization is full of spies that want to see you fail. Those people are beyond fighting, because they use the system of civilization itself to tear you down."
"Yeah, well, with some people the best course of action is inaction. Reason and passion in words and action sometimes never work. With them, inaction can have a greater effect. By removing yourself from the equation, you allow the vacuum left behind to do all the talking."
"Which is an arrogance unto itself. For how do we know we make any difference at all in our absence alone?"
"Inaction in the context of how you end a bad habit. You just fucking stop doing it!"
"But by removing yourself from the problem, those causing the issue most likely see it as a victory."
"My father used to tell me, "He who fights and runs away, lives to fight another day.""
"Why is that all of the great philosophers seem prepossessed with the betterment of civilization as a whole? You would have thought that intellectual power-houses such as Sir Francis Bacon would have used their wits to selfish ends for their own mortal gains. Yet the renaissance and enlightenment were focused on a more perfect world for mankind itself. Why? Were they all saying that in order to truly elevate your own self you must concentrate on the bigger picture? Or really is it only because of their altruistic endeavors that others have chosen to remember them? I heard Nick Cave once quote Auden, something about how, "The artist needs a tragedy to occur in order to make his life a serious matter." But then if questioning the establishment gets you exiled, your fucked by the paradox."
"That's the ongoing struggle of the human experiment. You and I are dealing with the exact same ethical dilemmas that Socrates faced, and that finally had him killed."
"I'm so fucking sick of hearing about our fundamental conflict of fucking interest. Fuck this daily facade that most people have for longing to live a harmonious existence; while the crushing fucking reality of the world and our own fucking self-sabotage leaves us all with a life altogether unwholesome! Fuck the ideal verse the inevitable! None of us truly fucking know how important our fucking principles are until our very fucking life is put on the line. We're all just fucking meat-insects!"
"It's all academic until someone straps on a suicide-vest. And then the pacifists run crying behind the policemen with the fire-arms."
"Yeah, fuck these smug optimists loiter in their comfort-zones, forgetting that the little guy on the street is still malnourished and barely fucking surviving! High ideals from ivory towers do nothing to feed the slave-labor of every-fucking-day life. I hate people that have never known what it's like to go hungry, and yet preach to the little guy who's unable to pay his fucking rent."
"Well, to forget that the little guy is a petty creature, is to alienate yourself from the masses. Look at how well Trump is doing in the American electoral campaign at the moment. People respond best to those whom they can relate to and that don't talk down to them. No one enjoys being talked down to about how things ought to be instead how they actually are. That kind of pretension tends to get you condemned by the masses. After all, who really votes on anything based on reasonable evaluations?"
""It's not my job to fact-check," is the tag-line of today's zeitgeist."
"It's nothing new. We are all openly bigoted behind closed doors – until the masses endorse our bias. People in numbers are malicious entities. We'll seize any opportunity to humiliate and ridicule others. The end of an intimate relationship is a prime example of how easily we regress to our impulsive nature. We don't want to hear the truth or facts, we're emotional-engines running on pure instinct. And when emotion gets in the drive's seat, we abandon that most divisive delusion of all: the belief that other lives have meaning and value, and should thus be treated as equal to our own life. Without that conscious limitation, that other lives matter, we refute all evidence and even society's dictate in order to prove ourselves right. Ultimately, we are all wrong about everything. If we objectively-observe, then we are missing out on experiencing. And if we experience then we are not objective. To be right, one must objectively-experience; one must coexist both inside and outside of the universe. To be right you have to be god and his only son... And... I'm afraid I've lost track of where our conversation was going."
"You were getting to why I'm supposed to stay the fuck away from the little white house."
"Ah, Ha!" The old guy looked away and puffed on his cigar. "Avoid the marrow of this land."
His grim tone made me slowly swivel my head to the side and glare bemused at his suggestion. "Why?"
"What stops someone from crossing the line and doing something wrong?" the philosopher-farmer said. "Respect or fear of the consequence. You have neither. Consider this your caveat, come what may."
Writing on and off throughout the day, I took a break when the sun broke through the clouds, and I wandered around the outside of house while drinking a coffee. I swept the gravel away from at the back of the house, and revealed a totally different sort of stone, much rougher and yet immaculately joined. The foundations were seemingly made up of an older masonry. Maybe the house once had a patio around it. As I casually kicked away the gravel around the edge, I saw I was fucking-up my shoes, so I headed over to the tool shed. With the crisp light of day, I counted the remaining bags of cement in the shed, before my eyes were distracted by a mound of rocks about the size of doghouse to my left. Stepping inside the shed, I moved up to that strange stone structure. There I found a padlocked iron gate, like the bars on a prison window above a black-hole. I could hear the vague sound of water sloshing below, as if a steady current was pouring smoothly by. So it was a natural spring, but I had never seen a well like that before. It looked more like the entrance to a medieval dungeon. Learning down closer, I spotted some letters craved around the inside rim of stone. As I was reaching for my pen-light, I then heard a fucking car pulling up to the house.
Marching from the far side of the little white house, I grew more pissed off by the second. For fuck's sake, what part of going somewhere to be alone, doesn't the fucking universe understand?! A white Mercedes-Benz was parked some distance from the house and a small woman was reluctantly approaching with uneasy footsteps. She appeared as though she was cautiously crossing a minefield, with her arms crossed. Again I wished I had a fucking shotgun and rocking-chair as I impatiently called out, "You lost?!"
The gray-haired woman paused. Her shoulders twitching as her distressed expression replied, "Mr. Knox? Do you remember me? We briefly met two years ago. In Berlin. In the hotel Adlon Kempinski."
Squinting at her, I did find her somewhat familiar. "Where?"
"I was visiting Natalie. You had grown your hair at the time."
My mouth opened and eyes drifted. "And I shaved it the very next day. What was your name again?"
"Huh. So what brings you out here? Portman finally want her portrait?" And then suspicion struck me. "How the fuck did you find me?"
"It doesn't matter."
"Oh, yes, yes it does fucking matter," I laughed bitterly. "How did you find this exact location in all the whole wide world? I seriously want to fucking know!"
The fifty-year-old woman in her thick woolen jacket and blanket-like scarf, took her glasses off, glanced around, and finally spoke up, "A worm told me."
"Holy shit. Why didn't you say so. Well, come inside. Get warm. Would you like a tea or coffee? I only have instant if you can handle it? I know some people can't stand instant coffee. Yeah, like it really tastes any worse than some of the baked rat shit that some cafes serve. Come in. come in. Chloe, tell me, how is little Natalie doing these days?"
"Please... I would rather stay out here."
I slowly turned back toward the weathered woman. I still couldn't place her accent. Maybe she was Greek?
"I don't mean to cause a fuss. It's not my intention to intrude."
"We're long past that."
"It's very difficult for me to be out here."
"Yeah, it's fucking freezing. That's what they call winter. You might have heard of it."
"Please. Let me say what I came to say, and then I shall leave."
"Alright then. What's on your mind? Tell Uncle Fingers." As I took a few steps forward, Chloe immediately inhaled and backed off, maintaining the gap between us. I stopped and grit my fucking teeth. "Explain, would you please, how did this little worm tell you how to find me?"
"You must leave here! Come with me!"
"What? Why? Go where?"
"Just leave here. This place. These cross-roads. Please, come with me!"
"Cross-roads? If you haven't noticed, it takes two roads to make a fucking cross."
"I will explain as best as I can, but not here. At least let's take a drive to the nearest village."
"No. I don't so."
"Where are you from?"
Chloe rubbed her arms as she looked around the fields and took another step backward.
So I mirrored her action and backed off too. "It's touching. So many well-wishing strangers concerned for my safety today, and for absolutely no apparent fucking reason. Would you look at this place. It's pretty as a fucking picture. So fucking convince me, or get the fuck out of here!"
She shook her head, then nodded in surrender. "Lisbon. I've been driving since Friday night. When the worm woke me."
"It woke you? Jesus, is this a tape-worm you're talking about? 'Cause you should probably go to the doctor and get that shit checked out."
"It was in a dream. I was here. In this house. I saw what you did to that girl. She trusted you. I didn't want to watch. But I was forced to. Those hands. Hands behind the curtains. They grabbed me. They made me watch you. But there was no one behind the curtains. They were so strong."
I was quite fascinated by her traumatic accounts, as visions from my own reoccurring childhood nightmares were immediately brought to the surface.
"I know what you have!" Chloe spoke louder, though her voice trembled as if she were about to burst into tears at any moment. "I know what you took from the Old Grahams house."
That was outstanding! I hadn't even mentioned anything about that when I had written about my experience at Loch Ness. However, I also understood how cold-reading worked, so remained silent as I grinned.
"It will eat you. The gate. It will eat you!"
"You do realize that the worm was a liar. You do realize that, don't you. We're all lying right now. So who the fuck are you to decipher the truth in this labyrinth of complete fucking deception? Who can trust whom when we all know there is nothing truly worthy of being trusted? Yet you believed a worm! A FUCKING WORM!"
"I found you here though, didn't I."
With a grin and a wink, I pointed my index finger at Chloe, as I walked away. "You drive safe now. Say hi to Natalie for me."
Oh, that tone, when females snarl my name like its a leash around my fucking throat.
"Seek out the one with the seven eyes and the backward arms!" Chloe strained her voice as she spoke. "Please!"
The whole time I watched that hysterical old woman drive away, I was only picturing Natalie's mischievous smirk as she had laid naked on that hotel floor.
Later, while writing, I was listening to Le Royaume Oublié / La Croisade Contre Les Albegeois / La Tragédie Cathare, Les Trois Principes, Alef, Mem, Shin. The moment the song ended, I heard a splash of water. Reaching over my laptop, I killed the stereo. The tick-tocking clock kept the beat to my left, and birds murmured through one partially opened window, but that was it. This was bullshit! I stood and looked around the room. I had fucking heard it, like a brick dropping into a fucking bath. Or... I looked over at the stairs. Or it sounded like a cement coated bone being thrown into the lake. Smiling, I liked this place. Here I was without distractions. Here I could focus on my art. Though, this was never meant last. The short-term appeal was what I had found attractive. Being there was balancing my life in the city. There was always that balance to find. Professional verse private life, social verse intimate life, internal verse external life, etc. The duality of love was no different. The music I had been listening to reminded me of the Troubadour concept of love. Domestic verse romantic love. The two should always be kept at a distance. Like they say, never mix business with pleasure. Domestic love was the long-term relationship of couples living together; while romantic love should never be tainted by such mundane tedium. Romantic love should be passionate and short-lived. Both sides have their benefits. To deny either is to become imbalanced. Yet Game-Theory says no one wants to come second place, so secrecy becomes the key to attaining a healthy balance of domestic and romantic love. When YHWH said, "I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me:" he was stating it when he was in love; just as the domestic and romantic lover says there is only you. It's a sentiment of devotion but it has no objective basis. There are plenty of other gods and plenty more females, you just ignore them. Females, unlike gods, have always been a formidable adversary; but like gods, inevitably jealousy forces its way into unwelcome places. Those that go looking for what is not meant for them, deserve to suffer from what they find. Domestic or romantic, they are all females: dangerously insidious beings, consumed with latent rationalizations exclusively justifying their actions and identity upon an infallible pedestal of disassociation. Keep the domestic separate from the romantic! The Troubadours were right. However, chemistry always breaks down sooner or later. Heat-death is not only the destiny of the universe. There has never been any lasting cohesion between any female that I have ever fucked. Some are great lovers, some are shit. I have been a perfect gentleman by some standards, and a disgusting fucking moron according to others. It's best to grasp the parameters of a relationship from the get go. Once the definition of the dynamic blurs, all the pleasuring in the world will never hold off her nagging. Nagging is a creative downer. Nagging kills inspiration. Nagging suffocates freedom. Listening to any female nagging that her feelings are more important than anything, is like enduring the whips from a slave-driver. Pussy-whipped! I have no tolerance for any female's defamatory perception toward my lifestyle. And if you ever bow down to their whimsical urges, the nagging will never fucking end. No domestic or romantic relationship is worth suffering a nagger. Forgiveness in a relationship is much like Nietzsche's stance on Christian forgiveness: merely the inability to take revenge! Punishment or forgiveness, though, it makes no difference. She is what she is. I can't teach her anything, for she is in denial of her own belief that she is owed whatever she wants. She will always absolve herself to herself. It's human nature, and not at all a female trait. I have no power over her. However, in turn, I also do whatever I want, which happens to be exactly what she fears the most. Unfortunately, she too knows that she has absolutely no power to do a fucking thing about it! Once the innocence has gone from a domestic or romantic investment, it is doomed. The innocence is systematically replaced with nagging. But out there in that little white house all by myself, I was spared the nagging, and instead, I was confronted with the great indifference of the fucking universe.
Making myself another coffee, I recalled Lulu talking about her rape-fantasy. The vanity of a female's ego was exactly that boundless: she craved being desired so much that she needed a man to lose all self-control and risk imprisonment just to possess her. Lulu's glorification of rape had failed to factor in being raped by some gross old, unattractive piece of shit. The eternal delusion of controlling the uncontrollable. The reality of rape-fantasies were never as well directed as Gaspar Noé's, Irreversible. Lulu had complained that whenever she saw people eating pork, it made her feel like she was being raped – in a 'bad' way. I had asked her how was one type of meat worse than any other? For surely her meaty fucking cunt was just as fucking disgusting! Outraged, she sneered, "No!" She sounded just like those moments when I was about to slip my erection into a girl's vagina, yet she had assumed I was going for her asshole. That was the last time we had spoken on-line. I end friendships as easily as I begin them. I am no Troubadour, tactician, nor Iago. I am imbalanced.
SUNDAY 28th FEBRUARY 2016
At twilight, I climbed
back into the attic while a surly wind battered the stone walls and whistled
through weary gaps in the roofing. I wanted to see the sunset from up there
as it fell on the backside of the house, and then I felt it. An awareness
like I had just remembered a chore I had forgotten do. Scanning the framework,
I found that pale porous stain clinging to a corner of the ceiling. Bone colored
and riddled with tiny holes like a thousand spider eyes, it stared back at
me as if I was looking in a mirror. The sunset began drawing my attention,
though, just before I looked away, I saw several of those wet black leech-like
things reaching out of that mass resembling a wasp's nest. Realizing that
the sun was sinking directly behind the summit of the hill, I turned toward
the opposite window, keeping myself directly between the sun and the tower.
There was light coming from inside several windows that dotted the silhouetted
ruin. Approaching the window, I was without a doubt that there was definitely
access to the upper levels.
The creak was flooded when I came through the trees. It was a fucking torrent! Too wide and far too rapid for any kind of crossing, and the roar was amplified by the steep banks. There must have been a storm somewhere south in order to account for such a dramatic surge. Looking up at that imposing stronghold, I couldn't spot any refugees camped outside, but those narrow slits in the fortified walls continued to flicker from a contained fire on each level.
It could have just been the wind, but the sound of crushed leafs directed my torch into the woods behind me. Something caught my eye. At first I thought it had started to rain. They looked like droplets in the beam of my small flashlight, until one landed upon my sleeve. It was a maggot. There were maggots falling all around. Glancing upward into the swaying trees, my flashlight swept across the hung remains of dead animals. Dozens of slaughtered, disfigured, and extensively rotten carcasses were swinging everywhere above. I don't know how I couldn't smell the stench that must have been produced by so many decomposing bodies strung up in the branches. The more the wind brushed through the forest, the more gutted and toothy displays of mutilation presented themselves. It was hard to tell exactly what type of animal they were, their hides were skinned and the flesh putrefied. Pigs, or cows, or horses? They weren't small carcasses, these were big animals. How the fuck had anyone gotten all of them up there? Then I heard it again. Something out in the woods. I could clearly hear someone stomping through the leafs. I killed my flashlight. It was a human figure. He was running at me. I replaced my torch with my claw hammer, but then I saw the machete in the hand of this stranger. Touche! Turning toward the river, I grinned and resigned myself to the only apparent option – so I ran at that fucking gorge! I heard that lunatic screaming furiously as I leaped with my hammer still in hand. The embankment on the tower-side of the river was soft with damp soil and I actually bounce off – luckily the claw hammer hooked an exposed root, and only one foot sunk into that freezing fucking water. Dragging myself half way up the the bank, I realized that it was the black guy shouting incessantly at my escape. In the weak light it was obvious that not only was he stark naked, but he was covered in severe lacerations. Glaring at that brutal fucking machete, I couldn't help wondering if his wounds were all self-inflicted. He was seriously fucking pissed off. He chopped at the ground with his weapon and yelled as sweat coated his demented expression. Suddenly he went silent. I watched, clinging to the roots on the bank, as this naked guy slowly turned his back on me. He had seen something in the woods that I couldn't discern from my vantage point. Shaking his head, he began sobbing like a child. Both his hands rose in front of him as if he was apologizing to someone. I was about to climb higher so I could catch a glimpse of what had so abruptly terrified this big guy. And then he was attacked! His body snapped back as his scream instantly became shrill. The momentum of the collision sent him back off the edge of the gorge. There he defied gravity and levitated directly over the river. Before I had the chance to question what the fuck – he was ripped apart! His body tore open like a loaf of blood-filled bread caught within the invisible hands of a fucking giant. Limbs, guts, and his head were split inside out in a single moment. A fine spray of his blood even reached my face as the rest of his tattered flesh slopped into the relentless river. After that, I clung to the bank for a while, absorbing what I had just witnessed, and scanning the other side for signs of – anything.
Inevitably, up to the tower I went. There was a weird groaning noise coming from above. A howling. Circling the ruins for the first time, I assumed the sound was caused by the wind cutting through the cracks in the stone. Once I reached the far side, I came across smaller broken down walls leading to a courtyard below the tower. That was where I could finally envision that there had really been a rather large building here once upon a time. But it was those three tiny glowing windows next to an external staircase that zigzagged up this side of the tower which led me upward.
Inside the first window came the moaning of men. Looking inside that utter darkness, I saw burning hot metal tools. Those torture devices illuminated only as much of the burning skin as they were peeling from the flesh of what appeared to be an enormous pile of bodies. The room was full of people slowly being stripped of their meat and strength. I couldn't make out whom the torturers were, until one of them was turned on by another who began hacking off his face. Whoever picked up the fallen instruments carried on doing the same to anyone else.
I continued upward. Inside the second narrow slit of a window the cries were louder but just as inarticulate. There was more than enough light in that chamber. Again, dozens of naked individuals were crawling over each other and burning. Each seemed to have been burdened with a head-sized coal somehow implanted in their gut which was slowly roasting everyone from the inside out. Writhing with inexorable agony, nothing they did could diminish their internal suffering. It was an orgy of smoldering torment mounted recklessly upon itself.
The third window was almost completely silent. All I heard as I climbed those precarious stairs was the snorting of a hundred humans choking down molten hot iron. The heat scorched my face as I peered inside at that smelting chamber. There was a massive cauldron in the center were all those deranged people clambered against each other just so that they could reach into that insanely hot substance. Their hands instantly burst to flames as they cupped the liquid metal and then drank it down! Some even dunked their faces directly into the pot, and despite completely melting off their identity, they seemed incapable of quenching their thirst or resisting the immense damage they caused. Everyone was burnt, disfigured, and yet rabid for more. The only ones that weren't packed around the edge of the pot, were those squatting as they shit or pissed out that still golden metal. Their genitals were charred to the bone, and some even then began eating the burning fecal matter as it poured out of the rectum of another.
Once I reached the top of the steps, I followed a walkway around the parapet. Finally I came to a sealed gate that stood between the open roof and myself. Looking through the old iron bars, I leaned away from the sight of a body lying naked in the center of that six-meter-square space. It was impossible but it was Lulu's body! I recognized the tiny unicursal hexagram tattooed on her left ankle. The gate wasn't locked yet it wouldn't budge as I violently shook it out of sheer frustration. I had to know if it was her. Using the exterior wall as a support, I climbed up and over those internal battlements. Landing on moss and dead leafs, I looked up as Lulu herself slowly rose to her feet before me. The wind cut right through my overcoat, but Lulu stood without a stitch of clothing nor her fucking head! Reaching out, I took her in my arms and held her tight. Her skin was like all long-dead meat: cold and unappetizing. The stump of her neck felt soft against my jawline as I sniffed at it. She still smelt great. Her hands held on desperately as she began trembling. Glancing up, I saw a light. A huge fire back-lit the little white house. A bonfire on top of the hill. Lifting my head for a better view, Lulu's headless body then twisted us around. Her hand then sunk into my pants while she grabbed her own breasts with her other hand. I shoved her away, and she immediately spun about and bent over, displaying her luscious ass. That fire on the hill then meant nothing to me. Though, suddenly she was no longer made of flesh. Her white meat had stiffed and was now covered in thousands of gaping holes. She had become made of that porous entity that had haunted me ever since Loch Ness. And then even her anus spread wide open as one of those ebony serpents slithered out of her ass like a infernal erection. Dozens more snake-sized leeches extended from Lulu's new orifices as she slowly stood and faced me. This time she wore a crown of such inhuman features that only a devil would flaunt it. She was more beautiful than ever. Impatiently, she slapped me across my fucking face, and then grabbed my throat as serpents slid around my head and pulled me close! There she pointed out to the distance and wanted me to see something. Gradually she rotated, her outstretched index finger covering the entire circumference of the battlements, while her grip crushed my throat harder. I tried breaking free with both of my fucking hands tearing at her wrist, but those serpents then wrapped around my eyes and contracted until I was sure my fucking skull would crack.
Blindfolded by black snakes, I then saw what they were force-feeding directly into my optic fucking nerves. Through that pain the pith of human perception was peeled back, unveiling the unseen world. A vast desolate landscape bleeding as if it was mortally allergic to itself. The Earth had become the great-beast-with-two-backs and bubonic plague. A place without death for everything had already been sacrificed to eternally suffering. Where the forests had been, now millions of ash sodden insect-like animals ate each other alive. It was a grotesque riot without end, like watching a swarm of human-like ants sweeping over thousands of others as if they were a tsunami of the wicked. Looking toward where the little white house had once been, I saw in its stead was a circle of arcane stone pillars surrounding what looked like some kind of pit. Those legions of devils kept well clear of the pillars. To my right, where the lake had been, was a massive entanglement of god-size serpents that were strangling each other as they stretched all the way to the fucking horizon. To my left, in the distance, I saw three enormous creatures that resembles mountains with horned heads, multiple limbs, and even more disproportionately huge mouths. They clashed with each other so abrasively that they sent chunks of the land miles into the sky. There was something even bigger looming behind me and casting a shadow over this entire hemisphere, but I was unable to turn my head any further. With one of my hands gripping little Lulu's hip, my other sunk fingers into her esophagus and trachea. But how the fuck do you choke the headless?! Then I saw the burning hill rise up as if hell itself was flexing its muscles. The shrieks of a billion victims of the battlefield filled the air, but then Lulu's absent head gave rise to a sickeningly disembodied voice that screamed directly into my fucking ear, "DO WHAT YOU DO!"
Collapsing against the battlements and coughing frantically, I was instantaneously alone. There was no demonic Lulu anywhere. A light rain on my head finally got me to my feet. The bonfire was still blazing on the hill. I was once again looking at an Earth that geologists knew and loved planting flags of dominion upon. The only question that bothered me was, how come the fire on the hill was in both versions of a vision?
Taking one last look around the empty rooftop, I hurried down the dangerously slippery stairs. I had already reached the top window when I realized that the gate onto the roof was open when I had left. Frowning against the gales, I ignored the now darkened windows. The Harrowing Of Hell then came to mind as I nearly slipped off the stairs. If Jesus had traveled to Hades for the three days after his crucifixion so that he might liberate the biblical forefathers, how the fuck was he meant to find all of them so quickly? The Syrian refugees couldn't even walk to Germany in three fucking days, so how was anyone who was hoping for salvation meant to rendezvous with Jesus in time? Sheol was a fucking big place. And besides, the older you get, the more you forgot. You forget people, places, and experiences. It all fades given long enough, until the current ordeal is all that seems relevant. Environments shape everything into entirely different organisms. Evolution takes place even in the depths of Gehenna. Our reptile-brain may have instincts, yet what were instincts but residual memories from our primordial origins. Ergo, even in hell the most egregious pain would eventually become the norm. The past perception of sensory experience would no long exist, and suffering would be what you had adapted to. Your past would be reduced to unconscious formative instincts. So those that Jesus might have sought to save would no longer be who he was looking for. The abyss changes even the best of us.
Once I made it to the gorge, the river had dried up into barely a few puddles. Climbed up the other bank, I found the machete of the black guy lying on the ground where he had been torn asunder. The very fucking moment I picked it up, I knew I fucking shouldn't have – yelling voices of men suddenly come running this way. It was the other refugees. A group of them emerged below the tower, searching the ruins with flashlights. The machete must have reflected their light, because they all pointed their torches directly at me. And that's when I noticed exactly how much of the dead black guy's blood was on my face, I was painted in it. With the guy's machete in hand, there was no way that this looked good for me. I swear to fucking god, I hate it in movies when retards pick up the fucking knife at a fucking crime scene! I am that fucking idiot! Naturally, those men on the other side of the gorge screamed vengeance. Shaking my fucking head at myself, I run like a motherfucker back toward the little white house. Not that the front door of the house was going to stop this angry mob for any more than two fucking seconds. By the way, a fucking machete is not the most aerodynamic thing to carry while running for your fucking life. I was sweating like a Japanese school teacher on a regular day in a class full of fourteen-year-old girls in mini skirts. So when I made it to the house, I yanked off my fucking overcoat and flung it at the front steps. Sparing a moment, I glanced back and counted six men racing out of the woods and across the field, all of them screaming bloody-murder as they came. If only they had pitch forks on them, then I could have said, "Frankenstein had days like this." Running around the house, I charged straight for the hill, and the refugees followed. There have been times when I thought to myself, wearing all black will come in handy one day when I need to ninja my way out of sight. Well, my light-bulb-white fucking head destroyed that fucking idea! However, I found the practical application of running at the gym had actually severed me better than expected. I shot up that hillside within a fucking minute.
There were in fact several small fires surrounding those standing-stones, not one big bonfire. As I approached, the random rain drops increased in frequency. In the midst of the stones, I saw a ball of long human hair. It was a head! It had to be Lulu! Marching right into the circle, I reached out – when a heavy fucking chain swung over my head and looped around my fucking throat! A foot then kicked my legs out from under me, and a knee slammed into my kidney on the way down. The machete had fallen to the ground, and as I was about to grab it, Chloe stomped down on the blade. And then the mob stumbled up the hill. Squinting, I was honestly shocked at Chloe's ability to keep me on her leash. Never underestimate the elderly. She scowled at those men as they spread out and slowly approached. Regardless, I had to see the face of that head lying on the ground. Clawing at the top soil, I strained against the chain with every ounce of energy that I could muster.
"What are you doing?!" Chloe snarled. "Who the hell are these people?!"
The head was only a few inches from my finger tips.
A man then came running, yelling as he held a thick length of wood above his head!
Chloe released me and I lurched onto the head. Scoping it up, I glanced back at the attacking man as Chloe raised some small trinket in her hand and spoke in an unknown language. The enraged man suddenly dropped straight to the ground in spasms! Chloe began addressing the others, but I had to see the face of the head, yet when I look at what lay in my hands, I found nothing but a large clump of dirt. Fuck this shit!
"Where's your fucking car?!" I demanded, as the rain really began to carpet-bomb the night.
"Why didn't you listen to me?!" Chloe hissed anxiously. "You're a fool!"
"Yeah, yeah. Now where the fuck is your fucking car?!"
"Back down there. It's a long way off."
"Lead the fucking way. Run!"
"Yes. Good idea."
And we ran down the side of the hill in the opposite direction to the highway. "Are you fucking sure this is the way?!"
Chloe didn't reply.
I then realized that neither of us had brought the fucking machete, for fuck's sake! "What the fuck are you doing here?!"
Chloe just struggled to keep up as the flashlights from the men swept through the trees behind us. I have often pictured myself being attacked by a random person who brutally murders me, and while it happens I nod to myself figuring that it was about fucking time. But I couldn't say I had ever imagined myself running from a literal lynching-mob. But the cause was no surprise. Misunderstandings will get us all killed sooner or later. It's never a simple fucking matter of clearing up the mistake by just talking like reasonable adults. The more I hear people gloating about their rational intellect, the more unrealistic it fucking sounds. We're all emotional rapists, and words can't unrape a broken heart.
The woods went on for-fucking-ever, and my faith in Chloe leading us out of there was about to end, except when I looked back, we were no longer being followed. Thank fuck!
"There!" Chloe gasped, pointing ahead. "I parked not from from there."
I could barely make out an ominous barn amongst the black trees – when a man leaped out of nowhere and slammed into Chloe! She screamed and was tackled to the ground. I kept running toward that fucking barn as the rest of those refugees appeared from all angles. I guess Chloe's voice caught everyone's attention. I made it to the building and slipped in through a huge door without anyone coming after me. My lungs were exploding as I bitterly tried controlling my breath. I knew I should keep running the fuck out of that clusterfuck, but the reality was worse than my heaving lungs. I needed Chloe in order to find her fucking car. Fuck! Why the fuck didn't I bring the fucking machete?! This was fucked! But I couldn't just leave her out there. And then in that morbid pitch black barn, I saw the most welcome sign I have ever seen. The long wooden handle of a fucking ax!
I'm not saying that those five men were attempting to rape Chloe, no, I wouldn't want to sound like a Islamophobe perpetuating the fear-mongering. So let's just say that those five men were assisting her out of her pants while they insisted she relax and catch her breath face-down on the ground. That sounds like a less critical assessment of the delicate situation. And then I bashed that first cunt right in the face with the happy-swung force of my ax handle. If only the ax had a head, I could have gone CHOP, CHOP, CHOP all night long. But with my baseball bat-like friend, I continued going BASH, BASH, BASH through three heads before the other two scrambled the fuck out of range. I still got one guy in the knee cap, and another in the ribs. Grabbing Chloe by the elbow, I snarled with the worst bed-side manner that anyone has ever had toward a potential rape-victim, "MOVE!"
Two of the men can running back at us. I swear that his left ear looked like piece of raw bacon after the ax handle had WHACKED into the side of his fucking face! The other guy hesitated, so I went for him. He ran the fuck off, and I didn't follow. Clutching Chloe's arm, we made it safely back to the barn.
"Where exactly is the fucking car?!" I whispered, keeping a look out. "Hey! Wake up! Hello! Where the fuck is the car?!"
"It's just... It's not far... It's next to the creak. We just need to follow the creak back to the car."
"You go now. Get in the fucking car and start it up. I'll make sure they don't fucking follow. If I'm not there in like a fucking minute after you, leave and head back to the house. I'll meet you there."
"Shut the fuck up, and get the fuck out of here!"
"Don't fucking make me use this shit on you!" I sneered so fucking bitterly that Chloe backed off without another word as I lowered the ax handle. Turning to the woods, I spotted several figures hurrying through the dark. It's times like this that I wish I had a M249 light machine-gun and Arnold Schwarzenegger reminding me, "If it bleeds, we can kill it."
Someone then grabbed my shirt and tugged from within the a crack in barn! I was amazed that I didn't feel a breeze around my ass after clenching my anus so tight that I should have bitten a hole right through the fabric of my shorts. Restraining my wooden weapon, I discovered the arm of a child gesturing for me to come inside. Without another thought, I raced to the door as the voices of those men started yelling from all sides. It was that skinny boy who had broken into the little white house with his gang of little cunts. He was already at the other side of the cluttered barn, waving brazenly for me to hurry the fuck up. The sound of planks of wood breaking were joined by flashlights as the barn was suddenly raided! By then, however, the kid had led us out a rotten hole in the corner where I learned that the rundown building was actually an old watermill. The creak that Chloe had mentioned, eked past a huge clogged waterwheel. Without a word, the kid quickly jumped into the shallow pond and pointed under the motionless turbine. I shrugged with an expression of so-fucking-what?! The men were getting closer, so the kid pulled my ax and we both crawled through the icy water into an obscure cavity behind the huge wheel. I hate caves, but the water was trickling further inward. When I glanced up at the kid, that fucking prick then kicked me in the back of my shoulder – and I went head over ass off a ledge and plummeted into the void!
The water was terrifically awful. Just fucking terrific. My first thought was one of relief, glad that I never kept my phone on me while on vacations. I surfaced waist-deep in a subterranean cavern, while the screams of the kid confronting the men echoed above. A delirious battle of confused languages proceeded shrieking out into the blackness as I stood in that hollow oblivion. The tiny hole that I had fallen from was just above my eye level. Searching with frozen fingers, I needed my ax handle. It was wood, that fucker should have been floating somewhere nearby. The voices of the men soon faded and I was left in the dark. I may have hated caves in general, but I fucking dreaded water-filled nightmares without a fucking light. Hang on and fucking second! I still had my motherfucking penlight on me – you sweat little son of fucking bitch! Once that halogen beam came on, I was presented with nothing that I had expected. Cathedral-like arches were carved directly out of the solid stone. It was a man-made tunnel, and the inhuman statues lining the walls encouraged me onward.
The water-level lowered as the passageway swayed from side to side, probably following the natural course of the original cave. One thing I was absolutely not about to do, was get lost down that fucking rabbit hole. The moment the path might fork, I would be heading back. Fuck getting disorientated underground in tight spaces. But the tunnel was one way and one way only. Eventually, I came to hole in the ceiling. It was the well in the old tool shed. But there was no way I could reach the ceiling, and besides, I couldn't open the locked bars at the top.
Further down the tunnel, it finally opened into a large circular chamber. That's when I heard the sirens above. Maybe the fire services had been alerted after someone had spotted the blaze on the hill? Or maybe Detective Rosswald and Everett had returned with reinforcements? Sirens all sounded the fucking same to me, "Too late! Too late! Too late!" As my flashlight surveyed above, it was obvious that I was standing directly where the basement of the little white house should have been. The floorboards were about twenty-feet overhead. Listening to men yelling in Deutsch, I heard more vehicles arrive. Someone then thumped vigorously at the front door, and I smirked as I shrugged but said nothing. And then the water broke open as those things slowly surfaced surrounding me. Slowly turning, I shone my light on their opaque presence. Then I put out the light...
By the time I crawled out of the lake, I was frozen to the fucking core of my fucking spinal column. Reaching the tree line, I watched those emergency vehicles departing the scene, and I finally understood what Chloe had alluded to about 'cross-roads'.
Never in my life have I showered for as long as I did in those small hours. I had had some serious concerns about the circulation in my toes, but gradually the color returned. Stepping out of the shower, I saw that I had forgotten about my little test in the bathroom basin. I had left a few pieces of cement fully submerged in water, there to verify if they would maintain their integrity. They had.
MONDAY 29th FEBRUARY 2016
I hadn't slept that night.
I never saw Chloe again. I didn't care. I had things to do. Evidence to dispose
While listening to Planet Of Zeus, Stab Me, I sipped on a sweet creamy coffee by the front windows as I watched the first signs of sunlight stain the tree tops. As the light grew, I saw thousands of people standing outside. Headless naked females. Thousands and thousands of females with every skin color and tit-size. All of them standing as though the fields was finally ready for harvest.
The taxi soon arrived at 7am. Walking down the driveway, I found it paved with the heads of those reaped females. Climbing in the back seat, I never looked back as I smiled. Life is a game of what-the-fuck-can-I-get-away-with. I used to enjoy sharing experiences with someone special, but I had come to find that disappointing once they failed to see what I did. Why waste your time sharing anything when the universe teaches you to focus on the self and nothing else!
THE DEVIL HAS HIS OWN PROPHETS.
Arriving back at my flat in Berlin, I checked my letter box at the front door. There was a envelope with that familiar handwriting. It was a simple note from Lulu, stating that she had just arrived in Rome as we had planned. The experiment had worked perfectly: no one could track her once she had abandoned all electronic devices.
So whose bones had I coated in cement? Well, as Wittgenstein had once said, "Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent."
© 2016 BRUCE STIRLING JOHN KNOX