Depths

The sky! The Glorious Sky! The stars shining like a glittering fiery spread across the inky blue! A universe boundless with the nebulas and galactic arrays of celestial majesty. A God capable of such works is surely beyond the conception of mere men; but it won’t likely be long till men take their first fledgling steps amongst those stars.

Beneath it the elegant spires and ivory riches of the Overcity: resplendent and shining in the light of the blinding heavens. Libraries and meeting halls full of the Great and Good all nestle in these angelic perches far above the ground. The tomes and works of academia and High Thought spread amongst the clouds and there is little that must be done beyond think and create. Spread between these towers long embellished catwalks that glitter like a spider’s web amongst the long tall spines of the towers.

That sits above the ordinary people in their slums; sprawled out for miles across the rigidly divided broken lands; an ocean of rooftops and concrete as far as the eye can see even from the very highest of the towers above. The people who live down here have a much harder life; struggling to get buy on what little can still be gleaned from the struggling land. Crime is common and hunger ubiquitous; but the glimmer in every man, woman and child when looking up at those spires pulls them through it all. The promise of hope pulling them from the depths of despair.

But below the slums are the sewers; a labyrinth stretching almost a mile underground and with edges so distant and unmaintained that likely no one is aware of the entire boundary of them; only they extend even further out than the cities do. Down here are the truly destitute; barely surviving in the lightless suffocating depths with only the run off of the land far above that trickles all the way through the soil and down the gutters and through the gaps in the rocks and into the “rain catchers” on the roofs of the Sewer homes for water. Rats are the true kings here; with men simply an afterthought; the peasants in a land of Rat Kings and sewer urchins. The people here do their best to get by; but dare not explore the deepest depths of the networks of sewers; long since abandoned by men.

Down there, in the very bowels of the Undercity, lie places built by men and gods but left to rot by both. Where nature smoothed out caverns man bent them into tunnels then left them. Down there only the hardiest Rats will even dare venture; for the horrors that lie in those depths defy any description by men. Those who get lost in these parts here a splat or squelch, see a horrible hole-filled eye or cheek, and are devoured: never to be seen again.

But even that is not the lowest point; for below those depths, unbeknownst to the likes of mere men, lie things that even the horrors dare not face; things that were best left to those dark depths.

Otherwise who knows; they might just remember there’s something above them.

Power Down

Beep…

Beep…

Beep…

Ten thousand years went by between each breath and the eons flew by: my slow mechanical chest gently whirring with the infinitesimal amount of effort required to keep me functioning. I saw fewer stars by the moment; the eras uncountable eating them all up in moments. It was distressing to see so much time simply drain away- but it was the only way to save power.

Beep…

Beep…

Beep…

By then it was very dark. By then it had been dark for millennia. On this frigid little rock I stood across epochs as the last breaths of the atmosphere were stripped away. My meagre remaining flesh struggling for breath until the mechanical life support took over; slightly increasing the workload and increasing the tempo of the hum ever so slightly. I began to scrawl something across my mental interface; the same bland electronic font it used for everything not fully capturing my words.

Beep…

Beep…

Beep…

I’m beginning to feel more sluggish; the last of my fusion batteries burning down like the billions of stars and trillions more space fleets and installations lost to the storm of ages. Entropy tore at all sides and the planets were becoming dust by the day; every attempt to resist only making it worse. I went, for the first time in millions of years, from standing to sitting and then lay down on the soft dirt that had presumably once held plants. I began to feel sleepy; ready to be consumed by darkness. I looked up into the void and knew no longer any hope of an end to the destruction. I lay back and smiled for the first time in an army of my former lives; it was finally over.

Beep…

Beep…

Lost Souls Collection Part 2- The Eyes Have It

She lost everything in that fire, a house, a son, a husband. But the most devastating loss of all was the one she would never acknowledge: but one could see it in her eyes. The innocence of an optimistic Young Woman ready to take on the world had been crushed out and an empty cynicism was all that was left in its place. She was not a Young woman anymore; but the wounded pride less despair still shone like sickly yellow light in her withered old face; having not felt the warmth of the flames for four decades. She strode through the night; seeing nothing but the pavement ahead, hearing nothing but the roar of cars, and feeling nothing but the constant wearing stab of psychic pain.

He lost everything that day in 2008, when the bubble that everyone assumed would never stop growing puffed up and burst, and you could see it in his face, the bold scarred misery of a man who had once had everything and now nothing. The millions of dollars he never made, the mansion he never finished saving for, the car he had to sell to pay off his debt; it was all in his eyes. He drove home that night with a determination that only fit a man driving home to drink one last scotch before putting a gun in his mouth.

He never lost anything; nothing much happened to him at all actually. He had lots of plans to do things; he would write a book and travel the world and learn an instrument. He thought that if things went wrong it would be in big dramatic ways. But nothing ever happened to him; he was never rich but never poor- always in the unremarkable middle ground. He never wrote a book, he went to Spain a few times but never left the tourist spots where everyone spoke English. He just went to work, came home, and watched Television. You could see nothing in his eyes, not a trace of anything out of the ordinary, but he was a Lost Soul alright. He would convince himself the issue was some trivial thing. It was that he hadn’t got that promotion or found the right girl or bought a good enough car or something; but to admit what it really was, even for a second, would have driven him to a madness that he could never escape.

Wisdom of the Elders

The Blood Priest stepped down from the Mount after the evening’s ritual; his hands were wet and trembling with subdued passion. I was just a child back then so my memory of the Blood Priest is of a huge hulking man when in fact he was likely the size of the other adults in the Village. His robes covered his face in dark and what momentary flashes of skin I saw were pale save for the crusts of dried blood. The Blood Priest shook my Fathers hand who seemed unbothered by the smear of red it left on him (Father usually loathed getting his hands dirty). The Blood Priest said something to my father quietly and they both laughed. After a time he shambled over to me and squatted down to my height. The Blood Priest, like all adults, was intimidating to a timid little child like myself and the thick stench of death from the days offerings did not help that. I was scared of the giant looming down to talk to me but my father’s big warm eyes a few feet behind him let me know, without a word, that there was nothing to fear from this man. The Blood Priest maintained conversation in spite of my childish ineffectiveness and cracked a big grandfatherly smile at me. We talked for a few minutes before the Blood Priest really dove into what he had actually been asked to talk to me about.

“Now your Father tells me you have been having some terrible dreams. Is that right?” He asked with a slow meander that instantly put me at ease before throwing the gear the other way and sending me trembling with panic again. The dreams revived and swam around inside my head; biting and tearing their way out like beetles. I must have looked ready to scream because instantly the Blood Priest embraced me; his stench of death almost soothing now.

“It’s okay there… don’t worry it’s perfectly normal.”

But I knew it wasn’t. There could be nothing normal about what I had seen; or what I would see.

That’s the last intact memory I have of that time: when my culture still existed.

Lost Souls Collection Part 1

“People who still need to drive or walk somewhere by ten pm on a Saturday do not have it figured out. They are the lost souls of our era: the Wraiths of a generation.”

-Unknown

This is Frank. He’s been at work for sixteen hours in the factory hell hole he calls a job. The vast and ravenous Goliath of American industry slowly and gracelessly flailing to the ground from the slings of the little Island Nation across the sea. He works the last open car manufacturer in his state when, just ten years ago, it was one of fifty thousand others. He’s a cog in a machine about to drive off a cliff but he can’t bare thinking about anything but the road directly ahead. His car swoops by me with a screech and there’s the momentary flash of his approaching then passing headlight. Frank doesn’t have a wife to come home to anymore; but the kids need feeding somehow. He swoops home; still with another hour of driving down empty yellow roads to undauntedly persevere.

Susie always smells of tobacco at this sort of time: her lips rouge like plastic whilst her trembling fingers gripped a cigarettes. She stumbles along; not even homebound, she’d rather not be at home whilst her mother is awake), through a fog of darkness from nearby trees. She’s here in a momentarily blunder of swears and boozy breath and gone with the plume of lingering smoke left behind. I turn to check she’s okay after a minute or so.

She’s gone.

In the stolen darkling hours of the deep night all tempered rested minds and bodies are safe and warm inside; but the dysfunctional, the decrepit, the morally broken; they are our citizens in these troubled times of night. These are the precious hours of the Lost souls of our city.

The Tube

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It’s very important you understand what we’re doing is not wrong. It’s illegal sure but that’s only because of just how limited our small minded little society is. What we did was a righteous good man it made the-

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Sorry I just don’t like tubes very much; that noise really grates at me. Anyway; we’re gonna take this till we get to the edge of the city then bolt. Hopefully that will minimize how many security cameras-

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…oh god. Come on don’t pussy out now we’re so close to freedom and we’ve done nothing but the right thing. History will judge us heroes and our statist and corporate oppressors the real enemy; the tyrants who disguised our heroism as deviance with the rich sickly sweet allure of their propaga-

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… Okay I’m only saying all this because I don’t want you to experience any guilt about this or worry about justification: the Master says its right and so-

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-it-

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Tap Tap TAP

At the door door

Door door

She wants to get in she wants to get in

She… wants it!

It isn’t wrong it isn’t it isn’t it isn’t it ISN’T Goddamnit

GODDAMNIT

Civilisation pulls the tether on my mind

And I recoil from the door

But her sweet voice excites my

Id.

“Come in Come in sit yourself down”

Have to think of something

“Have a drink or something”

Stupid stupid stupid

got-a-think got-a-think got-a-thi-

“No don’t go!”

It’s now or never

“No no no!”

Free of that wretched tether

free free free

free free free

me me me

My mind free

to mindless majesty

in the wild wild wild

She screams

into the wild wild wild

wild wild wild…

Wild Wild Wild Wild….

the end the end the end the end

no end no end no end no e———————-