Been afk!

Sorry everyone!  Bad news is I’ve been absent, good news is its because i’ve been crafting a new novel, I think I might share some!

 

The following is a possible later chapter or at worst a deleted scene involving a side character in the novel I’m working on!

Here goes:

 

 

Charlemagne is A Pot Head and He Gets That Done

But with Acid, how much was too much anyway?  White paper upon his tongue he walked through the desert.  If Char had done it ten times, he’d done it twelve ten times.  He could still think.  He could spell.  The practice of economics lay beneath him like a worm squeezed of life.  The pie charts all made sense now and it pointed places, it pointed out of town, out of all the towns.  Something funky in the water, something rotten in the politics.  Char couldn’t put his finger on it.  He kept walking.  How much was too much?

The thing was just ahead of him.  About twelve steps.  That number seemed important today.  He’d watch it.  He had in his hands a book and he held it up high so that he could walk the land between Debauchton and Heaven’s High while reading the text.  The book was pleasant, a collection of Dickenson.  Char had finally developed an appreciation for her.  A fly had just buzzed for dear sweet Emily as the towers of Heaven’s High emerged in the distance.  The walled city was white and resplendent against the scorched brown landscape.  It looked like an alien god’s sentient vomit strewn across an unforgiven and un-scrubbed water closet in a particularly dodgy section of Welsh’s 80’s/90’s era Leith.  Of course all of that was under water by now, Char knew that, of course he knew that!

He was pleased.  The book was done and Ivan would love it.  Two gifts for the price of one stroll!  Char was truly visionary and prodigy amongst drug lords anywhere AND EVERYWHERE!

“OK WHY AM I SHOUTING, THOUGH?” Charlemagne asked

But no one was there to hear him.

“I think I’m wondering, how much is enough?”  He said.

A few ravens flew by him, they were being harried by a brace of adolescent Red Tail Hawks.  The Hawks called in harsh, shrill cries of warning.

“The ravens were in the wrong here man, I’m just passing through.”  Char told them.

He could see the Hawks, they regarded him sternly.  Certainly he knew better than this.  What was he doing getting mixed up with such rough company?  Ravens were terrible creatures.  He reasoned out an apology,

“I’ll leave you this ham right?  And then you know… I won’t let it happen again.  Right?”  Char went down the road and kept on towards Hawksville.  The hawk’s let him go with a warning.  No eyeball pecking.  Just- stern words.  On to Ivan’s pad— He’d be there backpack, briefcase and fanny back all settled and cozy by nightfall.  Just in time for the ceremony of the seasons to finally fucking end.

Fireworks in the distance told him no, not quite yet.  Not over yet.  His buddy was still squirming on stage next to his sexy sister.   Was it weird for him to dig his friends identical twin?  Was he?  Was that…  Char figured it didn’t matter because he’d never act on it anyway.  Belladonna was out of his league.  Char was just a renegade living out on the prairies in the badlands.  Czarina Belladonna Czar was like an angel with a shotgun… She was like vidscreen star and like better… she was like Bog’s sun Bezus…. And she was like the rising sun… then she was the moon… but more like the night sky strewn with stars… a sunset really.  He settled on that.  She was a fucking sunset.  And he was not going to tell her any of that.  Ivan and him.  That meant more than sunsets.  Wait was that… no…

“SERIOUSLY.”

Charlemagne was, he supposed, very, very high.  Somewhere in the distance he could hear the Shins.  It was one of Ivan’s favorites, something off of wincing the night away.  Did that mean it was Ivan’s turn up on the stage?  He grimaced.  Char knew Ivan hated the speeches.  He knew that Ivan usually got pretty loaded himself just to get by up there.  Bog only knew how his dad[1] Cliff got it done.

The Polis of Hawksville loomed before him.  White walls and black towers stretching towards the sky.  Red banners.  Images of vicious predatory birds— the very same Hawk’s Char had been leary of on the way over.  It wasn’t for nothing that he worried.  Sometimes the wild birds were actually robotic scout drones and sometimes the peaceful polis went out to the villages on the badlands and harvested organs from the living— well the living dead he had come to call them.  They were all that out there.   Not even a friendship with a martyr class citizen granted him much safety.  It was just as well.  The world had gone to shit.  Char kept walking.

As the sun started to set he could see the Geistkin suddenly emerging across the badlands.  They were pale and glowed a faint turquoise like that of a healthy sea from story book days. Vicious fuckers really but from a distance Geistkin were cute in a way.  They danced and twirled to their own music.  Certainly not the Shins.  Something older and darker.  Something elegant.  It was like the music you find playing at a vampire’s ball.  They were one thing that kept thriving in all climates and seasons and in spite if not as a result of the nearly constant wars.

 

[1] Ivan’s that is.  Char’s father was a dead naval captain.  And a good one too.  Still dead though.  A lot of people were.  Char hardly blamed him for it.  Although the naval bit had been voluntary… so there was that.

An alleyway incident pt. 2

A pair of blue shadows stood flickering and edged towards me. The hooded man stood up and let the cold of his eyes glint in the dark. Beneath him the girl lay still. Her eyes burned unholy and neon green. Vapor trailed from her mouth- I had caught this schmuck in the middle of a hasty resurrection ritual. His poor timing and lack of situational awareness painted him as an apprentice. Someone new to town. This fuck didn’t know the rules yet.

“She’s mine. My kill and I claim her.”

“You know I’m just walking home.”

“You look weak, are those spiders your familiars? You look very weak.” He said.

“I’m broke. You try fielding an arcane study on this budget.”

“The kill is mine.” He said again.

I wasn’t about to take it either. I never did have much traffic with murder. As I said before it ruins the magic for me.

Next door I heard a ruckus in the bar. It wouldn’t pay to be caught next to some murdering mind magicked death sworn Mage, not outside of this bar at least. I did my best to defuse the situation. I could probably take this one creep and his weird blue shadows, but I couldn’t handle a bar full of Irish mer canneries and their friends. That would go downhill fast. It would be a storm of knives, the crack of a shotgun and then silence.

“Keep the kill, let me pass.”

“Tribute.” He demanded.

I rolled my eyes,

“I just said I was broke asshole.”

Fucking tourists think they can to town and start conjuring the dead like its nothing. I wondered if this guy even knew how hot this alleyway was.

“Pay it or I will take it.”

“You don’t want to dance here.” I said

“I think I do.” He replied.

The blue flickering shadows soared towards me reaching out with bubbling ghost flesh that hardened into talons. A pair of bird spirits maybe, or something he’d built in his free time. Either way they stopped short and drew back before me. The twin Geisha ghosts I’d been given by my old mentor rose from the slick, black concrete and growled beneath the pouring rain. They appeared fierce and ethereal- choosing in this moment to bare rows of sharp diamond teeth.

“I’ve seen those.” He said.

His shadows buckled and vanished. My geists stalked around him snarling.

“I did say you didn’t want to dance here.” My voice was a soft whisper. “You should leave.” I told him.

His eyes shone bitter blue- mind magic, cold though and tempered with death as well as something that felt and smelled older.

“This is my kill.” He repeated.

Some people you lead to water and they’ll still die of thirst.

He sent a barrage of memory damaging magic towards me. It flickered blue and swift like silent lightning in the dark. It caught the rain and echoed off of it. Now it was all around me but I just grinned.

“Every old lady in Boyle Heights knows that trick schmuck.” I held up a charm of the world tree- a surprisingly potent investment from Tibet. “Your cheap spells won’t work on me.”

“Aye but I hear bullets do.”

I didn’t bother turning. It was the Irish. Now we were proper fucked.

The hooded murder Mage turned to face them though and that was his last mistake. A red dot found his forehead and sniper found his shot. The bullet flew wordless and left him brainless. He fell like so many potatoes tumbling in a sack and collapsed across his kill. It was his kill. Her eyes still glowed- halfway through the conjuring and still she burned undeath across her brow. Perhaps she hadn’t been ready to be dead. I knew I wasn’t.

Rough hands seized me and put a bag over my head. My hands were bound and my geishas slunk through the shadows frightened and embarrassed. They were a fine gift but as my teacher had warned, only as strong as they’re weilder. Right now they were as blind as I was. I felt those same hands drag me up stairs, across floor and then down stairs once more. I was tied to down and left wiggling on the floor, my eyes still covered. The geists nuzzeled me from the shadows but could do no more.

“Keep a watch on that one while we fetch them corpses from the street.” Someone said. And then I was alone in the darkness.

Slow and full of steady caution I heard the scurry of my spiders. The young came and whispered to me. I knew their tongue. They told me the mercs were outside and that something had their attention. Vampires I hoped. The spiders said they weren’t sure. A larger one began nibbling at my ropes. I promised him the sweetest blood I could fetch from flies if he’d hurry. Then they began to lift the veil from over my eyes. The guard wasn’t looking- I set my geisha geists upon him. He went down the scraping crunch of stone upon stone- rows of sharp diamond teeth grating against each other. There was no body left. The spiders lead me through an exit where everybody just so happened to be preoccupied with a ruckus in the alleyway I had come from. I didn’t bother finding out what, I slipped through the front and winked at the bouncer stationed there. I started running and was gone before displeasure and recognition played across his ugly face. Behind me trailed spiders and before ran those the spectral dogs- the geisha ghosts. Free for the time being.

An Alleyway Incident pt. 1

It was raining as I walked through east Hollywood. The dirty streets broke out gleefully with graffiti and street art. Skulls and anarchist charging- death on the winds. The alleys were not as safe at night, east Hollywood is not the Chinese theater- it’s more like Bukowski’s bachelor pad after a run of bad luck but some of us still call it home. Hell some of us were born here. I know I was… That’s how I got caught up with everything anyway. Hollywood is simply rotten with undead. Hell- necromancers even have it on the short end of the schttick. On one end of it the mortal authorities generally kept corpses off the street. Fresh ones were easy to get- gang fights, robbery victims, crack heads drawing there last in the park at night on Tuesdays- anywhere really but you had to move fast. The mortals hated death. It sucked given that I courted her. And then of course on the other end of the sthickkk were vampires and lich kings running rampant throughout film, television, music, shit pretty much every department of everything throughout the city. Couldn’t so much as bat an eye or take a leak without seeing some crumbly faced ice kings and strange greedy demons. Basically I had nothing to work with really and I refused to dirty my hands in order to replenish my stock. Some necromancers think murder is a good option, a step on the road to getting what they want but I think that just ruins the magic. Lives and deaths of mortals aside necromancy itself is a very beautiful thing. For me it’s sort of like the best punk show I’ve ever been too. There’s an art. To it. And I won’t bore you with it.

Basically I was going down the alleys of east Hollywood not far from my basement lab and looking for stuff that had died or could be overcome. I kept a few rats here and thither for scooting and sniffing around and spiders, I had tons of spiders running around and laying little zombie spiders eggs everywhere. At night sometimes they would come running back to me with whispers. Mostly gossip though…. Something in the soil made them prone to it. But once in a while something good. Tonight, they had told me, was a great big old bloody old disgusting ass vampire initiation ritual involving most of the fresh dead for the night.

Shit luck sent me down a narrow road choked with five separate factional posts. Over here was a shop held by a pyromancer, there an inn that served as a front for Dionysian revelry, a barber shop held basements of vampire and necromancers and their dead. The bar was owned by some tough fucking soldiers- badass fucking mercenaries with no love for the living and hatred for the dead. I did like that bar though, an Irish tavern, guys from Boston, formers boxers- bouncers and bar tenders there. Not pleasant on their bad days…. All that down one road I walk when I need to do these dark deeds by the moral code I learned living in the woods. That things aught be nurtured and things of the wild aught to roam free in their own right. For my day to day that meant keeping the dead kicking when and while I could- was it so wrong if they happened to step to my tune? Was it my vault I gave the undead Mohawks and guitars? Was it so wrong for a necromancers to dabble in orchestral rock?

I walk the streets with a black acoustic guitar. I don’t mean to brag but it’s a fine piece of art. I’m really just a man of art. Right. I strum chords down the alleyway. The squeak of rats, the scurry of spiders greets each performance. But something more tugs- the murmur of horrors- dirty old spirits I’ve got working for me. At least it seems they work for me.

Murmur my geisha geisha and find me something. Find me something for my spiders to meet. Not too large and not too meek.

A simple spell to set the spirits flooding out in the avenues and alleyways.

The rushed low and smoked across the concrete in thin valor trails. Black things from the underworlds or whatnot. My spectral guard dogs with grinning diamond teeth. My geisha geists. A rare gift from an old mentor. A rare thing, rare enough to keep me alive at night even on these streets. If only I could say the same of cars…

I passed the bar and splashed my boots amongst t he puddles in the crags those Irish guns called a parking lot and god damn me sideways and upside down but there stood before me a serious problem.

A rich fresh corpse lay in the road. A dead girl. Shot in the heart. A young heartless dead girl. Her eyes burning green chemical death, und earth and above loomed a robed figure and a pair of shifting blue shadows.