Thursday, December 31, 2015

Wizard Dreams

Once there was a wizard, he was quite a good wizard amongst the magical wizard community and had a pretty good job up at the castle as the King’s Wizard’s second apprentice.

Yet, each night after he was done with his spells and incantations for the day, he would return to his chambers in the south tower, and he would look out the arched window, up at the stars and long for a different life.

He had been chosen to be a wizard when he was a young boy, being the seventh son of a seventh son, and even though he did enjoy conjuring and creating potions for the royal family’s various needs and wants, it was not what he wanted his life to be, it was just the life that had been set out for him.

So those nights alone in his bed, he would dream of a life he would have given anything to have.

For, more than anything, he wanted to be a Wizard of Rock.

Drifting off to sleep with a smile, the young wizard was happy in his dreamlife of throngs of fans cheering his name as he travelled the land bring happiness with his music. His head filled with images of himself playing to teems of rabid fans, all screaming and clamoring to try and get up on a light and smoked filled stage with him as he wailed on his electric lute.

Though, upon waking, he would remember he was just a simple wizard, and would get up to go about his daily duties; leaving his chambers behind, as well as the half-finished wooden lute, hidden sheepishly in the far corner.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Rational Thinking

You always took me for granted,
You never set me apart. 
Always keeping at arms length,
The feelings inside your heart. 

I know you think that i'm foolish,
That my emotions get the best of me. 
But darling love's not a logical thing,
Let me show you & this time you'll see. 

Leave out your rational thinking,
Please wont you take it away. 
Just come on over, let me love you again,
And this time maybe you'll stay. 

I try so hard to act like you do,
Mask my feelings; hide them deep down inside. 
But I can't keep going on pretending. 
I need what only your love can provide. 

You say I'm always on full steam,
That I need to slow down & just breathe. 
But baby it's never been that easy,
Inside my love for you does roil & seethe. 


Baby, this time just stay. 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Christmas Carol

Oh, Carol, how I wish you were here with me now. I have been good all year and now I am missing you; wishing you were here with me on this lonely Christmas night.

I think of the times we had and the love that we shared and I want you to come back to me; come back to me now, so I can make it right.

Oh, Carol, how I wish I could take all that I said and all that I did. If you came back to me now you would see, I really have been good ever since you went away. For now I only sit and look out the window, waiting for your return, but there is only the wind blowing cold outside in the dark, wintery night.

It was a night just like tonight that you took your leave, and I hope that now, perhaps you will finally come back to me, tonight of all nights. But lo and behold, what is this I see in the distance now; a slender, spectral figure, clad all in white.

Is it you who I see? Is it you who has come back to me? I knew you could not be held, deep down in the frozen, earthly soil of your shallow grave. I knew you would come back to me, oh Carol, are you not the most wonderful sight!

But why do you seem so full of anger and rage, my love? You cannot still be mad at me. After all, I did bring you back. I know I was the one, who put you in that hole in the ground, but I have been so good and spoke the spells and incantations correctly; I preformed the rituals right.

Oh, Carol, I have brought you back to me, granted, with the same black magic that I used to murder you the year before, but that was so long ago. Can you not forgive me? Please, my love, why put your cold, dead hands around my throat? Please, Carol, oh please, what will the neighbours think, when they find my body throttled by a ghost? They will certainly die of fright.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Sad Rocket Ship

Once there was a sad rocket ship. It was sad because long ago, after so many outer space adventures, its astronaut had grown too old for the rigors of interplanetary travel and came to settle on the lonely planet on which the rocket ship now sat.

The ship spent its days out in the landing field, remembering all the strange and exotic places it and the old astronaut had been to. They would blast off to a distant galaxy to watch its sun go supernova, and then jet over to black hole and jettison space junk into its gravitational field to see each object get crushed further down into the singularity and disappear into the void.

Navigating through vast asteroid fields had been its favourite thing to do as they flew through space together, both astronaut and ship skilfully working together to avoid being smashed to bits. It was that kind of terrifying exhilaration that the ship grew to crave and love.

Yet now, gathering dust in a yellow-grass field, it stood alone, growing sadder with each passing day, while the old astronaut tinkered away in his work shred, rarely even paying the ship any attention, much less coming out for a visit.

Until the day came when the astronaut's hover bed brought the frail old man out to the rocket ship's grown-over landing pad, a metallic box in tow behind him.

He feebly reached out to touch the ship's directional manifold lovingly, and apologized for not being able to continue on their adventures together. The ship's broke for the dying man and all the years of resentment faded away as he passed peacefully away after whispering something about how he hoped his gift would make up for everything.

The ship stood stoically as the morning suns raised in the green sky, now completely alone on the small planet, and did not notice as the strange, metal create the old astronaut had brought with him started to beep as if counting down to something.

At the apex of the rapid beeping the box then opened with a hydraulic hiss and out popped a small, humanoid robot, which then clambered out to stand on the ground, seemingly testing out its balance and footing for the first time.

It looked at the old man lying peacefully on the hover bed and touched his arm gently, as if saying thank you and then looked up at the rocket ship.

The ship regarded the odd little robot as it stood looking up at it, and then it noticed the writing on the chest plate of the droid, which read, 'Astrodroid 1'.

Astrodroid 1 pressed a few buttons on the hover bed and it started to float its way back to the small dome-home of the astronaut to begin its funeral subroutine, while the robot then grabbed a pack from its box and knocked on the ship's landing fin to open the gangway ramp.

Startled, the ship took a moment to realize what was happening, but then opened the ramp to let the robot board. After a few minutes of clanks and creaks the robot entered the cockpit and began making the ship ready for launch.

Confused, the ship could only respond automatically to the commands Astrodroid 1 punched into its navigation and engine controls before the realization of what the old astronaut's gift really was dawn on it.

He had created a new pilot for the rocket ship, one that would never grow old, and never tire of exploring the vastness of the universe with it.

With that long absent feeling of terrified exhilaration filling all of its modules and compartments once more, the ship's engines roared to life and they blasted off into the stars; leaving behind the slowly burning dome of the astronaut's final resting place, for new worlds and new adventures, robot and ship, rocketing through space, together forever.

And the sad rocket ship was never happier.

Sunday, December 6, 2015


Far out in the middle of the sea, there is a small, tree-filled island, and in amongst the woods the island there is a small, dark cave.

Inside the darkness of the cave there lives one of the most insidious of creatures has ever been.

No one has ever been to this island in the sea, or even knows that it is there, yet they have all seen the creature that resides within the depths its cavern, though they may not have been aware.

For each day before the dawn sun rises, it slinks its way out of the dark, hovel hole and spreads its evil across the world.

Though you may not recognize it, you too have encountered the foul fiend, perhaps even today.

For it can disguise itself cleverly; it can become whatever it needs to be, to carry out its dastardly scheme.

It could have been the one who secretly turned off your alarm clock late last night, causing you to be tardy for work once again.

It could have taken the shape of the sweet little old woman who snuck into line in front of you, only to insist on paying her bill with all the change at the bottom of her enormous handbag.

Or perhaps it took the more sinister form of that irritable barista at you local coffee cafe, who purposefully took your ritual order wrong, only you realized it after you had gone.

Maybe even the most malevolent manifestation of all, that group of tourists that stopped at the top of the escalator to plan out their day, while the gangs of commuters piled up behind you, jostling into you and making you spill your incorrectly-made morning brew all over the front of your newly bought shirt.

All these shapes and forms to attain its purpose, its main goal; to impede you, to cause you delay, to make you feel like you are having the very worst day.

Each day it accomplishes this, it returns once again to its lonely island cave, to laugh to itself in the darkness and gloom; to giggle itself to sleep, to awaken once more, to try and ruin your day.

Yet, there is a way to fight this most terrible of monsters, to not let it have its own way; simply do not let it get to you. Just smile, and say, 'Have a nice day!'

Just breathe and be kind, despite what others do or say.

If only everyone would do this, the creature would be vanquished, its reign of terror at an end.

But until then, it sits and smiles maliciously, from out of the shadows of its cave, deep within the small forest island, far out in the middle of the sea.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Tiny Bear

Once there was a tiny bear that lived in the forest. Abandoned by his fellow bears because of his small stature, he roamed the towering trees of wood alone, searching for a purpose to his teeny, tiny life.

One day, while he was trying to catch giant salmon in the rushing stream, the tiny bear caught the scent of a camp fire cooking something that smelled delicious, so he let his nose lead him toward a campsite where a family of humans were preparing their mid-day meal.

Easily hiding behind an old stump, the tiny bear looked on as the family of campers bustled around the site; everyone doing their part to get the meal ready, except for two of the young boys who were off to the side of their shelter dome, playing.

Although, when the tiny bear looked closer, he could see they were playing, but larger boy was controlling the smaller one's own arms, making the younger boy hit himself with his own hands, and it seemed the smaller boy was helpless to struggle against it.

This filled the tiny bear with anger, for it reminded him of when his bigger, stronger siblings used to push and paw him around just because he was so much smaller than them. So, he growled his small, but deep growl and barrelled his way across the campsite toward the two human children and leapt into the air, somersaulting into a ball to hit squarely into the middle of the older boy's back.

The boy cried out in surprise and tumbled forward, letting go of his brother as he sprawled out on the damp ground. Bouncing back up on all fours, the tiny bear growled at the downed boy as he stood between him and the smaller brother, who now stood dumbfounded at the sight of the little black bear.

With startled yelp, the older boy jumped to his feet and ran crying to his mother who was checking on the simmering pot over the fire.

The bully defeated, the tiny bear turned to the other boy, who still stood twice the bear's height, and sniffed at him with a friendly air. The boy kneeled cautiously down and held out his hand so the tiny bear pushed his head underneath it, allowing the boy to pet him.

Clearly this boy was in need of protection, and what better protection was there than that of a portable wild bear by your side?

After some begging and promising to take care of him, the boy's family said it was alright to keep the tiny bear and they took him with them when they left.

From then on, the two were inseparable, boy and bear, and there was no challenge or bully too great for them to overcome.

Finally, the tiny bear had found his purpose and as the young boy grew into a man, the tiny bear stayed with him.
Until the day the tiny old bear had grown frail and tired, and passed away in his friend's arms as he wept for his small, loyal companion.

Not wanting to be without his tiny bear comrade, the young man had him stuffed and treated so that when the time came, he could pass him along to his own son, to be the child's protector.

Thus is the tale of the first stuffed toy bear.

Sunday, November 22, 2015


Sometimes it is hard to be a hideous monster, Gorak thought to himself as he stomped home after the long, dark night.

Not the terrifying the humans that slipped into the dark nether regions of the Darkness, between Waking world and the world of Dreams part; that was the fun part.

No, it was the drudging hours spent waiting in cramped, damp spaces like beneath cellar staircases, under close-to-the-floor beds, or in over-filled and disorganized closets, just for the few fleeting moments when a frightened human happened to catch a glimpse of his nightmarish form.

Their screams were delicious, but his massive size made for many uncomfortable nights.

And though he was well-liked in the Company, and the higher-ups were happy with his performance, it was always those slick, wraith-like types that were all long fingers and teeth that kept getting promoted over him; he lacked the drive to bring new and innovative ideas to the field of terror to really make it.

He was just a big, lumbering beast that looked scary but he never got into the mind games that his supervisors were looking for in upper management. Or so they said at his quarterly revues, but he knew they thought he was too dumb to be really life-scaringly scary.

Maybe he was, he thought, maybe he would just be the grotesque hulk that lurked in the dark, night in and night out until he was too old and too tired to do anything else.

With a big sigh he turned up the walkway to his small, one bedroom cave, pushed the door boulder aside and lurched sadly inside. He plopped down on his recliner chair and turned on the television to see what new horrors were happening around the world he could use in his nightly excursions.

Slowly, his heavy eye lids began to droop and, like most days, he fell asleep in his chair in front of the flickering images of the atrocities the humans did to themselves; if only he could think of something half as terrible as those, he would be chairman of the board already.

Instead he drifted into his usual nightmare, the one where he worked at the animal shelter with hundreds of cute puppies and fluffy kittens all jumping on him and licking his face. It was real terror.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


Betwixt the shadow of night and the light of day, out on the horizon of the dawn, there lies a plain of existence separate from our own; a realm where all things are possible and time is stretched out into eternity.

There are some who say that there is no such place, that it is a fleeting fantasy of those that wish to escape reality. They say what lies out on the horizon is only more horizon, a shimmering haze that tricks the foolish into venturing out further and further, until they become lost and drowned out in the frigid sea.

Yet, this is untrue, this fact I know; know it in my heart, that there is another world beyond the edge of this one, and it is there that I must go.

Galloping across the grassy plains, my horse charges on as I push him to dash on; onward fervently, toward the glimmer on the horizon; onward toward the gateway that leads to another realm amongst the golden clouds that hang there.

While keeping my sights ahead toward my goal, in my mind I look inward to see the pleading faces of my family, imploring me not to strike out on my quest. I had tried to explain to them, tried to make them see; there was another world out there; I needed there to be.

But they would not listen, so it was with a heavy heart that I stole away in the night, to race against the rising sun; to meet that perfect moment where the first sliver of daylight breaks through the cloak of night, to reveal the way in.

If only I could be fast enough, I could see her again.

As we moved closer to where I knew the land would give way to the crystal blue waters of the sea, doubt crept, sneaking in to my sorrow-filled thoughts.

It must be there; it had to be, for why else would she not have returned to her devoted love; why had she not returned to me?

I too had thought her tales of the realm between worlds to be a foolish dream, so away from me she had run; towards the dawn's new born sun, until she had vanished into its bright, golden light.

Now my only hope is to find the land she has already found; to tell her I was wrong, that I do believe in that place, in her realm above the sea and below the sky above, where we can be together forever as one.

Sprinting now, the wind whipping in our faces, man and beast moving together, racing to the edge of consciousness; memories of my love's smiling face blurring in my mind's eye, as the horizon melds with the land and sky, allowing us to gallop on through to the realm in between.

Here betwixt the shadow of night and the light of day, I have found you, my love, you were right, and now forever here we will stay. Far away from the grey world we left down below; far away from the cold, cruel sea, where our earthly bodies now lay.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

The Beast

"Many have come before you." The great beast told him in its rumbling voice that shook the ground beneath his feet. "And all have failed. But, come, brave fool; come and take your turn."

Alejandro steadied himself from the tremors and tightened his grip on the hilt of his sword. He had ventured long and far into the dark Forest of the North, searching for the Beast of Legend; a creature the elders of his village had told tales of since times gone by, so ancient and massive that it was said to have existed since the dawn of time, possibly even before that.

Like all the children of the village, he had grown up listening to these tales, filling his head with ambitions of adventure and glory. And once he had grown up strong and skilled, he had set forth on his quest to hunt down and kill the Beast.

It had been an arduous journey, filled with much peril that tested him to his very limits. Through poisonous swamps that robbed him of his strength, an expansive river which caused him to forget who he was and where he was heading, even a crystal cavern where he had come face to face with his own dark reflection.

Yet he had triumphed over all these trials and tribulations to reach the edge of the Forest; to finally arrive at the very and of the world.

The Beast spoke true enough though, on his voyage Alejandro had come across the remains of the many warriors that had come before and not made it as far as he had. This had filled his heart with pride and renewed strength, for he had come further than any had before; he had found the Beast and would triumph over it as well.

The Beast's massive head swung around atop its great, scaled neck and looked down upon the tiny man standing ready to strike on the ground so far below with its grotesquely huge eye.

It laughed and the world shook.

"I can hear your thoughts, boy." It rumbled amusedly. "And you are mistaken. It is not as if the others had not made it this far. It is that they came to realize what you shortly will. And, like them, the knowledge will drive you screaming in madness."

Alejandro's nerve wavered slightly; what did the great creature mean?

No, he thought, steeling himself once more, it was toying with him, trying to make him lose his resolve; but he would not break, he would not fail.

Before the Beast could muddle his mettle further, Alejandra leapt into action and charged toward where the huge creature's neck had erupted from the edge of the cliff that dropped abruptly at the forest's end.

With a fierce shout, Alejandro took a mighty leap and jumped onto the Beast's thick neck and ran up its long, curving slope, brandishing his sword and baring his teeth.

As he neared the humongous head, he hefted his sword above his own head, readying to rein deadly blows upon the old monster.

He then caught sight of the view beyond the Beast's massive form; beyond the cliff's edge, and it froze his heart and stopped him dead in his tracks.

For below where he stood upon the reptilian-like neck of the ancient creature he had come to slay, was nothingness.

No land far below, no rushing river being fed from a high waterfall, not even clouds or sky; only the nothingness of space that hung all around them, the stars and the sphere of the sun shining far off in the distance.

Alejandro looked back at the cliff's edge and saw that it was made up of the enormous form of the Beast; everything was. The land itself was riding on the back of the Beast's scaly back.

The truth flooded his mind and everything began to swirl as he lost his balance and slipped backwards, hitting the hard surface of the Beast's neck and bouncing off to fall, screaming out into the void of space.

His final vision, before his mind fell into the madness that was the abyss below, was of the entirety of his world floating above him in space as he plunged further and further away from it, into the darkness, and the Beast laughed its gravely laugh.

Saturday, October 31, 2015


The street lamps flickered in the distance and then, one by one, started to blink out.

Sonja's mind raced with fear as the darkness of the deserted street marched toward her with each failing lamp post.

This cannot be happening. She thought to herself. That old fraud could not have done this.

It was only her mind playing tricks on her.

But the dark spreading toward her seemed very real and very final as she stood on the damp sidewalk, frozen with fright.

She should not have listen to Fiona; her stupid friend had suggested that it would be fun to go to the old fortune teller tonight instead of going to the usual Halloween parties. And when the creepy woman in the cluttered and incense-stinking shop had suggested Fiona was a shallow and vapid person, she should not have let her storm out without paying the woman for her unappreciated services.

The crone had grown scarily angry and muttered some incantation in a language Sonja did not understand or even recognize. Before she could go after her friend, the crazed woman clutched at her arm with a bony hand, cursing that, 'the darkness will take the both of you!'

Sonja pulled herself away and ran out of the grimy shop after her friend, however, Fiona was no where to be seen. Sonja called after her as she quickly walked back down the street the way they came but her friend had seemed to have just vanished into the night.

As she had walked on, there seemed to be fewer and fewer people out on the street, until it felt as though the entire neighbourhood had been abandoned and Sonja was left alone in the lamp-lit night.

And now, those lights were going out as she stood and watched fearfully, until all but the lone streetlamp post that shined down upon her were darkened.

From her tiny island of light, she looked frantically around; searching for signs of any other illumination, but there was only the complete and utter darkness that surrounded her now.

As her eyes strained to see anything in the pitch black that lay beyond the circle of amber light she dared not move from, something large and hideous moved in the shadows just on the edge of her field of vision.

Sonja's blood turned to ice as she heard the unmistakable sound of heavy hooves stepping on the cement of dark sidewalk outside the circle of lamp light.

A huge and menacing presence loomed up from the darkness behind her, and though she dared not turn to see it, she knew it had come for her.

One single, crunching hoof clomped down; breaking into the sanctuary of light, and Sonja let out a blood-curdling cry, sprinting out into the darkness; her fear of what lay in wait abandoned to the need to get away from whatever nightmare was behind.

Her scream was cut abruptly short as a car horn blared and its tires screeched on the pavement, too late to avoid hitting the woman that had suddenly run out into the middle of the street.

As the diver got out a saw the crumpled body of Sonja lying on the ground in front of his car, he looked around at the well-lit street and called out for the passer-bys to call for help.

In the crowd of people the had gathered to witness the grisly scene, the little old fortune teller stood watching, her wrinkled and creased face, distorted by the lamp light, and by the cruel smile she wore with satisfaction.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Wendy and the Whale

Wendy laid back and looked up at the vast swirl of stars as they drifted by, relaxing her breathing to match that of the great beast's beneath her.

Sometimes, even she got caught up in their quest and forgot to take the time and really appreciate the beauty that surrounded them, so it was nice to just lay there and breathe.

Scanning the constantly changing kaleidoscope of twinkling stars, she caught sight of her tent out of the top of her vision. Her modest little dwelling was a few meters away from where she lay and a wave of contentment washed over her as she looked upon it.

Here, so far away from everything she had ever known, it was all she really needed. It gave her a sense of pride that she was able to get by with just a sturdy, green canvas tent and cot; not even the fact that they were pitched on the back of a giant whale as it swam its way across immensity of space.

She rolled onto her side and patted the whale's rubbery skin lovingly as it sang out its own contentment with its high pitched cooing song.

The massive orb of a derelict moon reflected the solar system's distant sun's light a pale blue as the whale crossed over its expanse; a small silhouette against the moon's surface.

Wendy and the whale had travelled through many lonely star systems together, in search of the lost space cruiser that held her home planet's entire population inside its great, city-sized hold.

The ship had been on its mission to seek out a new, viable home planet after the destruction of their own, when Wendy had accidentally opened the aquarium containment unit while sneaking in to swim with the big whale.

The two vagabonds tumbled out into space as the ship jumped to the next system, leaving them to follow slowly behind; to try and pick up any signs of the engine's particle trail and track them from galaxy to galaxy.

So, in fact, it might have been Wendy and the whale that were lost, though she could not really put any blame on the whale. It was her fault they were wandering through the cosmos, and she was determined to find a way to reunite them with the ship, and their families.

But for now, it was nice to take a break and enjoy the wonders of the universe as she rode through them on the back of a whale.

As the strange creature made its way passed the blue moon, a small ship drifted cautiously in the shadows of a slowly turning asteroid, its pilot sat watching from the cockpit; watching and waiting to see where the beast and its tiny passenger would lead them next...

Monday, October 19, 2015

My Love

Why do you shake, my love?
Though, the fire is roaring with its heat so bright,
There is indeed a chill in the air that cuts me to the very bone.

Why do you shiver and quake, my love?
For it was I that was lost in the dark and cold of the woods tonight,
Though I cannot remember how I came to be there, dirty and alone.

Why have you gone so pale, my love?
It was I who had visions so terrible and full of fright;
Visions of being buried alive in the earth so deep,
For past sins I had to atone.

Why do you not come to me, my love?
I have returned home to you, but you do not delight.
After I awoke in that muddied field,
At the foot of that foreboding tombstone.

What is that you whisper, my love?
I cannot not hear what you have said.
Mutterings to yourself,
That I cannot be here...

That I am dead.

Monday, October 12, 2015


King Ricardo squinted angrily through the long, golden telescope that was pointed out the window of his private chambers, toward the neighbouring kingdom of Gertal; homed in specifically on his rival's castle's balcony window.

There, standing leisurely with his foot resting upon a footstool, puffing a bejewelled pipe, King Hildegar looked out over his kingdom, trying to make it seem like he was not aware Ricardo was watching.

The stupid fop had done it again! Ricardo thought angrily to himself as he caught sight of Hildegar's fur-lined, crushed purple velvet cape draped perfectly upon his frail shoulders.

Every time he thought he had gone out and hired the best tailors of the land to create the most luxurious and elegant cloak out of the most decadent fabrics to rest upon his sturdy shoulders, that pretentious cad, Hildegar would one up him with his own ostentatious creation!

Well not for long! He steamed and swung round to storm over to his chamber doors, knocking the telescope spinning wildly as he did.

"Capers!" he bellowed as he opened the big, oaken doors wide.

Before he was more than a few steps down the winding staircase leading to the lower floors that housed his army of personal tailors and seamstresses, the head garment master was bounding up to meet him, several apprentices scurrying up after him.

"Yes, my liege?" the garment master bowed deeply as they met the King standing over them a few steps above.

Ricardo roiled and yelled about how his current cape was an embarrassment and how could they let his lordly frame to be sullied with such a tattered and peasant-like garment, which he whipped from around his shoulders and hurled furiously to the ground.

"What did your highness have in mind?" the garment master ventured timidly. "You only have to ask and we will do our utmost to please your every royal whim." He bowed low again, his assistants mirroring his placating stance.

Oh, he had something in mind, Ricardo mused to himself, and it will show that pissant Hildegar once and for all which King wears capes around here.

Dictating his plans, Ricardo watched as their faces went from attentive listening, to intrigued scepticism, then finally, bemused horror as they heard his completed orders.

When he was finished, he made sure they understood, and told them to begin right away for he wanted the task completed for sunrise the next day.

As they began to scuttle off, he bade them to have the hideous cloak he had discarded burnt in the kitchen fires, then turned to storm back up to his chambers to shut himself away for the rest of the day to sulk.

The new day's sun rose in the east as King Hildegar opened the doors leading to his balcony and stepped out in the fresh morning air; the lavish purple cape flowing behind him as he swept out on to the stone carved balcony.

He breathed deep the brisk spring air and surveyed all that lay below his tall reaching tower, content with the world, and his beautiful cape.

A shadow fluttered across the sun and darkened the light upon his balcony, sending a chill over his skin so that he pulled the cape's furry edges closer around to keep him warm.

Looking up at what had caused the shadow, Hildegar gasped and swore aloud. Quickly, he ran to his own golden telescope to get a closer look at what he saw.

Through the looking glass's magnifying lens, King Hildegar could make out the figure of his rival Ricardo standing atop the highest turret tower of his shabby castle, as a great, long blue velvet cape draped itself over the parapet walls.

The cloak was massive, so much so that it was literally blocking out the rising sun's rays from making way to Hildegar's own castle.

He fumed with annoyance, picking up the handcrafted ottoman he loved to rest his foot upon while lording over Ricardo, and chucked it over the balcony's stone-carved railing.

Once again looking through the telescope, Hildegar could see Ricardo standing, smiling smugly with the ridiculously long, flowing cape, perfectly rippling in the morning breeze as he tried to make it seem like he was not aware Hildegar was watching.

Hildegar scream out with jealous rage.

It was a magnificent cape.

Turning with a snarl to dash open the chamber doors, he shouted, "Capers!!"

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Dawn Patrol

The stars had begun to fade from the still dark skies as he made his way across the grassy field, dew wetting his leather riding boots.

Brisk, fresh air tussled his dark hair as he approached the staging area, his leather helmet tucked under his arm.

There was the usual bustling around the corrals as he arrived; the young Handler apprentices running to and fro at their masters' commands. The old Handlers, most of who were retired Pilots themselves, making sure all was prepared for the early morning departure.

He neared the corrals' blackened Stonewood fences and one of the apprentices ran hurriedly up to him to take his leather satchel from him, and then sprinted back to the pens to pack it on his mount.

Stopping just outside the corral gate, he looked up at the blackness of the clear sky; deep, purplish blue began to seep into the edges of the horizon as the sun made its way back from its nightly journey.

This was his second favourite part of the day; his favourite would come soon enough.

A familiar sound came from behind him and he turned to see a grizzled, old Handler leading his mount out of the shadows of its pen.

While some of the other mounts of the Patrol pulled and lashed against their reigns as the Handlers struggled to keep them in check, his simple strode toward him, its head held proudly high and its gaze held steadily upon him.

Pride filled his own chest as well as the magnificent creature cantered closer to him, not needing to be led by the old Handler at all. The old man grunted his greeting and passed over the reigns before ambling off to attend to his other duties back in the pens.

With a soft whisper, he patted the creature's armour-skinned neck and it purred deeply, rumbling like some massive feline at its master's touch.

A quick adjustment of the stirrups and saddle upon its strong back and, donning his helmet and goggles, he clambered up onto the beast and strapped himself in.

Behind him, the other members of the Patrol were mounting up as well.

With a quick shout and a gentle prod of his heels, his mount leapt into the air agilely and began to beat its powerful wings.

Almost spanning twice its own length, it beat its leathery wings gracefully, lifting both rider and beast easily into the chilly dawn air.

Deftly guiding its movements, he spun them around in a smooth arc that faced them with their backs to the rapidly approaching sunrise.

The entire team of the Dawn Patrol came into formation around him in its standard flying wedge as he took the lead.

The cold wind whipped around him and could not help but grin with the pure pleasure he felt as they flew across the skies; racing against the dawn's orange light.

Tapping the beast's sides with his heels in a complicated pattern, he sent a message to his mount and felt the surge of energy within its mammoth body.

With a deafening roar, his Dragon belched forth a torrent of flames from its mouth, signalling to all those below that the Patrol was high above; keeping them safe as always.

This was his favourite part.


Along the sidewalk of the tree-lined street, the little old man shambled; his beat up steamer trunk in tow. The rusty wheels of the trunk's hand cart rattled loudly, breaking the peaceful quiet of the residential avenue.

On their way to school, Richie and Tim doddled as they stopped to look at the strange wildlife of caterpillars, beetles, and spiders that thrived upon the grassy yards of the well-kept homes they passed.

Across the street, Richie spotted the little old man who had stopped and set up his trunk atop the hand cart which doubled as a stand for the worn and battered case.

The hunched man stood serenely beside his closed trunk; as if awaiting any interested parties to arrive.

Richie tugged at Tim's packsack and motioned for them to go over to see what the old man was all about.

Reluctantly, Tim followed as he ran to catch up to Richie who had already started to cross over to where the benign looking old man stood.

"Hey, Mister," Richie blared unabashedly. "Whatcha got in the trunk, there?"

The old man smiled to greet them as Tim came up beside his friend, but the way in which his grin did not touch his black eyes made Tim's skin crawl. There was nothing benign about the little old man in the brown polyester suit.

"Oh, hello, boys." He said in a tinny voice that set Tim's teeth on edge. "My trunk? Oh well, I have something very unique inside; very special."

He placed his ancient fingers upon the leather-bound case, gently kneading its scuffed surface as he leaned in closer so he could lower his already quiet voice to a whisper.

"Would you believe," he started, the black pools of his eyes glistening. "That inside this old trunk of mine, I have a real, honest and true ghost?"

Richie scoffed loudly, but Tim's eyed the case warily.

"There ain't no such thing as ghosts, mister." Richie stated brazenly. "My dad told me, they're just in stories to scare people."

"Oh?" the old man questioned mockingly. "Is that so? Well, I can tell you for a fact that there are ghosts and that I have one right here in this trunk."

Tim looked from the serpent-like smirk on the old man's wrinkled face to the mysterious steamer trunk with an impending sense of dread that made his stomach tense and knot.

Richie laughed out loud this time.

"Oh yeah?" he said belligerently. "Prove it. Show us your 'ghost'!" he nudged Tim with his elbow knowingly, but Tim continued to stare at the now menacing trunk on its rickety old cart stand.

A curious thought popped into his and a got the better of his fear so he heard himself start to speak before he realized what he was doing.

"How," he creaked, "how did you catch a ghost in there?" His own voice seemed distant in his ears. "If it's a ghost, couldn't it just float through the case and escape?"

Finally looking back to the old man, Tim was startled by the knowing wink he gave as his smile grew, this time making it all the way to his raven-black eyes; making him all the more terrible.

"Ah, yes." The old man delighted. "That's the tricky part. You see this is a very special trunk. Why don't you boys come closer and I'll show you."

Crossing his arms in defiance, Richie scoffed again and took a bold step toward the trunk. Tim however, an icy chill stealing over his heart, shook his head and took a step back.

"We... we better get to school, Richie." He said as he tried to pull his friend away by his shirt sleeve.

But Richie pulled away, moving closer to the trunk still.

"We got time." Richie stated, not taking his eyes off the old man who simply smiled his sickly smiled back at the pig-headed boy. "Go on, show us."

Sliding his bony hands to the trunk's tarnished brass latches, the old man's smile broadened and he became even more hunched and warped-looking as the locks snapped open.

"You sure now?" The old man inquired, almost gleefully. "You really want to see?"

Tim backed away as the trunk top creaked open to let a sliver of the darkness it held inside, and real fear gripped him; terror at what was in that darkness.

Richie's smug expression started to falter as the lid slowly opened wider and Tim almost thought he heard him whisper, "No."

But he would never be sure, for as he looked on in terror, the image of Richie doubled and a transparent version of his friend began to be pulled from his solid form and sucked into the blackness within the trunk.

Finally finding his legs, Tim turned and ran; horrid cries from Richie mixed with the cackling laughter of the old man filled his ears as he sprinted down the street, leaving his friend and the nightmare of what was happening behind him.

The screams and laughter faded and were soon replaced by the noisy squeaking wheels of the big, leather-bound trunk being pulled along on its cart by the little old man in his brown polyester suit, shambling along the picturesque suburban street.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Final Approach

The wind whipped passed him as he fell ever faster through the air.

There was no panic in him; no sense of dread or doom at his impending fate, only a calm that radiated from him as he travelled rapidly on his descent.

All around him was a sea of blue with wisps of white clouds that he occasionally passed through; gaining momentum as he picked up more mass.

Blurrily, the vast expanse of land below began to take up more of his field of view as he fell tumbling further and further; over and over, down and down.

The cracked and arid brown of the landscape below was in stark contrast to the deep, azure blue of the sky above.

Yet, even as the ground drew nearer, he was filled only with a serene sense of being at peace; at peace with the air, the ground, all that surrounded him. For he was not rushing toward oblivion, but to his purpose; to fulfill the destiny that he had been given.

It was a satisfying feeling to know, and to be able to achieve one's destiny, and for that, he was truly joyful that his existence would mean something.

If only a tiny something.

Closer still, the land neared and he could at last make out his ultimate destination. His goal within sight, he was then filled with a sense of pride; a pleasure that filled him to the point of bursting.

On his final approach, turning once more to face the sea of blue above, he saw the multitude of his brethren in close pursuit, filling the sky on their own journey toward the dry desert below.

There was only happiness as the falling drop of rain splashed upon the prickly surface of the tall cactus that stood solemnly in the seemingly unending New Mexican desert.

The droplet's life-giving moisture absorbed into the cactus' tough, but porous bark; into its nearly depleted reservoirs of water stored within its cavernous bulk.

Soon after, more and more drops fell upon the dehydrated cactus and parched earth, darkening their surface with much needed rain as the clouds high in the sky above burst forth with their payload.

The destinies of millions fulfilled in a short, afternoon shower.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Nemesis: Conclusion

The rain pelted down from the dark sky and matted his dark gray fur to his slender body; struggling to stand back up on his four shaky legs, he looked up at the small back cat that hovered high in the air above the roof of the apartment building.

As the cat's black fur glistened in the rain, it glared down at the wizard cat with power-crazed eyes that glowed with red malice.

He was outmatched, his black cat nemesis had accumulated too much dark energy, and his own feeble light magic could not withstand the onslaught the misleadingly harmless-looking cat had rained down upon him.

Another barrage of the dark lightning and the battered cat wizard would be finished.

Nevertheless, he would not face his end on bended knee, as the malevolent cat above him would want; he would stand in defiance of the darkness, even if it took the rest of his already depleted energy to do it.

The black cat growled in anger as the cat wizard stood once more and shook the drenching rain from his face.

Descending closer to the rooftop, the black cat's glowing red eyes intensified as the power within him built up and his hissed maniacally; the weak and wavering wizard cat prepared for oblivion.

A flash of light erupts, blinding the defiant cat momentarily as he lets it wash over him; lets the end come.

The intense light fades however, and he opens his eyes to see a figure standing before him, shielding him from the fatal blast.

Ralph looks back at him as the black cat's beams reflect off the powerful barrier of light emanating from Ralph's hands.

A moment of confusion grips the little cat wizard and he looks over to the roof's access hatch to see the pretty woman in her rain soaked floral dress watching on worriedly.

Ralph loses a step and the sound of sliding gravel makes the cat look back to his human, who struggles against the black cat's powerful magic blast, which intensifies with each passing moment.

Ralph struggles, even though he is obviously a very powerful wizard in his own right to withstand that much dark energy. That was the fact that had caught the cat wizard by surprise, for, up until very recently, he had always though his human roommate a very dull human being indeed.

"Arg!" Ralph exclaims in duress, which brings the cat out of his stunned state to see the human wizard struggling to maintain the deflecting spell which was saving them both at the moment.

With intense strain in his eyes, Ralph looks down to his cat companion.

"Come on, Mr Fluffernutters!" He shouts, "I can't do this alone!"

It was his hatred of his own name more than anything else that raised Mr. Fluffernutter's ire to the point he no longer felt the bruises and pains that wracked his little body, and gave him the strength to make the great bounding leap to Ralph's shoulder.

Digging his claws into the fabric of Ralph's sports coat, Mr. Fluffernutters adds a blast of his own magic to Ralph's and a radiating blast of dark and light energy explodes with a booming resonance.

And everything is awash with light.

As he curled up on the couch between Ralph and his lady friend, the great and powerful cat wizard Mr Fluffernutters tried to lick his bandaged paws to no avail.

After their battle, Ralph had explained to him that he too had felt the dark power growing, and his new special lady, Morgese, had become more and more fearful of her cat, Professor Jingles; who it seemed had been exhibiting very unsettling behaviour, which he, also being a wizard, had recognized as signs that the cat was indeed a dark wizard, an agent of evil.

It was not until they had come back from the occult store, where he had been asking an old conjurer friend about any human spells that would work against cat magic, and saw the two of them having a wizards' duel on the roof tops, that he realized that Mr Fluffernutters was a wizard as well.

Each use of his name made the cat wizard growl angrily, causing the two humans to laugh at his annoyance, and tell him to stop being such an old cranking puss.

They then settled in to eat their microwavable meals while watching their favourite game show on the TV.

Mr Fluffernutters huffed loudly, but rested his chin on Morgese's leg and soon began to purr contently as she stroked his still singed fur.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Nemesis pt.2

It had been almost a month since the wizard cat had realized his evil nemesis was living in the apartment building across the way; living with the new lady-friend of his human roommate, Ralph.

And the tension was reaching a boiling point.

His evenings were no longer spent watching television on the couch with Ralph, who was too caught up with his new lady love to spend much more time on him than it took to fill his food bowl before rushing out to meet the woman from across the street.

Instead, the cat sat in their living room window and stared at his nemesis, the green-eyed, black cat that looked intently back at him from the woman's darkened bedroom window; sparks nearly shooting out of each of the cats' eyes as the gazed at each other until the darkness of night shrouded them in the shadows of their empty apartments.

His days were full of restless naps that were constantly interrupted as he compulsively peeked over the window sill to try and catch a glimpse of the other cat doing the same, but the black cat never seemed showed himself in the daylight hours.

At night, deep within the walls of the apartment, the wizard cat searched fervently to find a spell powerful enough to protect himself, Ralph, and hopefully the rest of the city from the dark magic that was radiating from the cat across the street.

Yet, each hour slipped away without yielding much more than a different variation of this warding spell or another.

So much of the benevolent and good magical energy had faded from the world, and now there was very little left, and very few who could still conjure it.

Dark energy was more abundant with each passing day, and the wizard cat could feel it amassing in the unassuming apartment of Ralph's lady fair.

The days and nights blurred into one another as the weeks went on and still no spell powerful enough could be found, he was at his wits end and feeling drained from the constant barrage of malice directed at him from the unwavering stare of the black cat each evening.

Then came a night when Ralph and the woman had gone out on the town and left both cats alone in their respective apartments. As the wizard cat sat waiting for his nemesis to show himself, there came a rumble of thunder in the distance and the skies blackened prematurely with dark storm clouds filled with flashes of crackling lightning.

A crash of lightning hit behind the building close by and all the power went out in the neighbourhood, plunging the buildings into darkness.

Still intently staring at the window across the street, the wizard cat saw the figure of the sleek, black cat hop down from its usual spot on the bed and, as another flash of lightning brightened the sky for a moment, the cat bounded out of the room.

The wizard cat transferred his focus to the next window which was the kitchen as a flash of green light hit the apartment door, causing it to open slightly; enough for a cat to slip out of.

Quickly, he leaped from the window sill himself and ran for the door to their apartment. Hitting the door with disengagement charm, it opened enough for him to wiggle his way out of and into the red emergency light-lit hallway and continued to trot hurriedly toward the fire exit.

Using a transparency spell, the wizard cat passed through the thick, metal door and raced up the stairwell to the very top, which did not lead to a residential floor, but the maintenance hatch to the roof above.

Levitating himself up and through the locked hatch, he found himself on the gravel-covered roof, under the dark skies filled with menacing storm clouds that threatened to burst forth with rain at any moment.

Bounding to the roof's edge, he put his front paws up on the ledge and scanned the rooftop of the building across the street. Another flashing of lightning revealed his green-eyed nemesis to be standing, staring wildly back at him.

There would be no more time for searching for an appropriate spell, the time had come at last; the wizard cats would battle for the fate of the city tonight!

Sunday, September 6, 2015


Once there was a great and powerful wizard, who also happened to be a cat.

Although he was a very potent wizard, the cat chose to live with a very ordinary human named Ralph in a one bedroom apartment in the east end of the city.

And even though the great and powerful wizard cat could conjure spectacular spells and wield magnificent amounts of magic, Ralph had no idea he lived with such a cat sorcerer.

He was a very dull and ordinary human.

Most days the cat lounged in the comfy, sun-faded chair that sat beside the big picture window of the living room and soaked up all of the glorious rays from the afternoon sun.

When Ralph returned home from work in the evenings, they would sit and watch their evening game shows together as they ate; Ralph his single, microwavable dinner and the cat his fish-smelling canned food.

Then, in the late hours of the night, after Ralph was sleeping soundly in his bed, the cat would begin to weave his magical experiments.

In the dim shadows of the his clandestine workshop between the walls, the cat wizard practised his ancient arts, poring over the multitude of spells scrolls he had collected over his long years, building his repertoire of enchantments and charms; all the while, searching for a spell powerful enough to protect him from what was coming.

For sometime now he had felt a great force building, a shadow creeping in secret across the city; an evil presence that threatened his thoughts with a probing malice.

After long hours of searching and spell work, the cat would lumber groggily out from the maze of passageways behind the walls in time to curl up in his bed at the foot of Ralph's just before the human awoke to his bleating alarm to get ready for his day.

Conjuring so much magic, even for a powerful wizard such as the cat was, was draining and he needed to rest in the sun's replenishing beams to regain his strength for the next night's work.

One evening, Ralph came home, yet seemed to be in a hurry, but not to put his meal in the microwave. The normally dull human rushed around the apartment, changing out of his work attire, showering, shaving, and putting on a clean shirt, slacks, and a tie.

He slopped the cat's can of food in the bowl before giving the wizard a hurried scratch on the head and heading out the door, humming to himself.

The confused cat trotted up to the window to look down at the building's entrance and watch his human companion exit and walk jauntily along the sidewalk, cross the street, and approach the apartment across the way.
Ralph rang the building's buzzer and stood worriedly for a moment before he answered whoever had spoken through the speaker before opening the door for him to enter excitedly through.

He disappeared into the building and the cat scanned the lit windows of the low-rise apartment building to hopefully see if Ralph showed up in one of them.

Sure enough, after a few minutes, in the window directly across from their apartment, a young woman in a pretty floral dress hopped up from her kitchen chair and went to open the door, revealing an awkwardly smiling Ralph whom she invited in.

The cat chuckled to himself as he thought that Ralph might not be so dull after all.

As the two went to sit down in the living room, as wave of menace came over the cat, the feeling of dread he had felt over the passed few months bore down on him with such intensity it nearly bowled him over.

Looking over to what was most-likely Ralph's new lady friend's bedroom, the wizard cat saw the dark outline of another cat sitting in the window, staring directly back at him.

The two cats gazed at one another, and the cat wizard knew that this was who he had been preparing for; this green-eyed cat was his nemesis.

And his roommate was on a date with its owner.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Under the Mountain

Once, long ago, there were two kingdoms that lay sprawled out on either side of a great mountain, and for many years they lived in peace and harmony with one another. Their trading and diplomatic business was conducted through grand tunnels that ran through the mountain depths, and both kingdoms thrived and prospered.

The rulers of each kingdom, powerful emperors, would often visit one another's cities and celebrate their peaceful existence with festivals and revelries to which all their surrounding allies would attend.

So it was that that the young son of one emperor and the young daughter of the other met on one such occasion and became the closest of friends.

All year long, each would wait with excitement until the next visit to see their friend and they would play and laugh during the festivals; marvelling at the exotic animals that were brought in from far and wide, enjoying the strange and delicious treats from the vendors, and watching in awe during the fireworks displays that lit up the starry night skies.

Soon, as it is oft to happen, the young friendship grew into more as their feelings for each other evolved into love and they would not wait until the next festival, but sneak out into the mountain tunnels to meet one another in secret.

In the multitude of tunnels that snaked through the base of the mountain, they had discovered a hidden chamber midway from each entrance, and there they would meet and be with each other, promising their undying love to one another.

Unfortunately, peace between nations sometimes only last when there is prosperity for both, and soon the dark shadow of famine fell upon the kingdom to the south of the mountain while the kingdom to the north, still prosperous, began to increase their prices for the goods and services they had always provided fairly.

The shadow grew through long months and became the darkness of war between the two kingdoms.

All the while the young lovers continued to meet in secret until her father's spies discovered their clandestine rendezvous and relayed the information to their emperor.

He forbade her from seeing the young prince and in his fury, gave orders to destroy the mountain tunnels, thus cutting his enemies and their young love off forever.

Unaware of the eminent destruction of the tunnels, the young prince stole away from his family's palace and went to meet his adored one in their secret chamber deep within the mass of rock and stone that separated them.

Horrified at the thought of her love being crushed underneath the mountain when her father's army set off their explosive powders, the princess escaped her chambers and fled to the tunnels' entrance.
Perhaps she could get to him before the tunnels were caved-in and they could escape far away to the west or barring that, at least that they could be together for eternity, buried deep in their mountain tomb.

She was within sight of the darkened gates of the tunnels' carved entrance when the massive blast exploded in a fiery flash like flames out of some terrible dragon's gaping maw and she fell to her knees as her heart broke with more force than did the mountain itself.

Weeping for her love she vowed never to leave from where she knelt and that she too, would become as the stone that buried him.

Try as they might, the emperor's guards, alchemists, and even the Emperor himself could not move her, as she had indeed become as immovable as the very stone of the mountain.

And there she remains, still kneeling, alone, all remnants of the two kingdoms eroded away over the millennia, leaving only her stone image, untouched, weeping for her love entombed deep within in the ancient tunnels.

Enwrapping him through the very rock she had become part of, the two lovers embrace forever more, under the mountain.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Black Tower Return

Against the hazy horizon it stands starkly contrasting the golden glow of the dawn sun, the Black Tower radiates its darkness into the very air that surrounds it; its evil trying to bleed into the world as it has always attempted to.

Its true nature hidden from the rest of the world, the Tower cannot hide from me. I see it, not as the modern, sky-scraping building that it disguises itself as to the rest of the citizens that dwell in its shadow, but as the ancient abode for the earliest of evils.

Throughout history it has always been, not always in the same location, not always taking the guise of the looming monolith against the sky; sometimes as the tower of an ancient stronghold, or a lone lighthouse on the cliffs surrounded by the crashing sea, or even as a sacred cathedral on occasion.

Yet, how ever it has hidden itself in plain sight, I too have been there to prevent the evil within from seeping out into the world and infecting it like a deadly virus, and turning it into a insidious nightmare from which there is no waking.

Over countless years I have fought my way to the Black Tower; fought my way inside and to the very apex, to face the evil that I always find there, each time, sacrificing myself in order to prevail.

Though, this time it has taken me much longer to find my way here, to realize my purpose. So much of this time is distraction. In days gone by, I was able to focus my attention, sharpen my mind against the darkness that threatens to envelop the world, but this time feels different.

This time feels as if too much of the Tower has leached its way into the world; leached its way into the hearts of the people. And it is growing.

Perhaps my spirit has grown tired and weary, having battled the undying evil of the Tower over and over, through the millennia, but this time feels different, this time feels wrong.

As I stand looking out over the sprawling cityscape, the Black Tower looming ominously in the distance, I feel alone.

I feel that I am missing a part of myself, the part that gave me strength in times of yore.

Did I have a companion once? One who fought along side me, as we moved as one, our combined strength out-matching even the primordial evil of the Tower?

If so, where have you gone, my friend? Did you fall in battle some time before and throughout the years I have forgotten you? Or did the evil behind the Black Tower find away to wipe you from my memories?

Where are you now; now, when I need you most; now when I face the Tower once more, alone and unsure.

The sun rises up from behind the Tower's dark outline and its golden light falls upon me, warming the chill that has descended upon my heart.

From behind, far off in the distance, a fierce roar echoes out and I turn to look over my shoulder as a memory blossoms in my mind and a smile appears across my face.

Have you return, my old friend? Have you come to my aid once again?

With a roar of my own I charge forward down the slopping hill, courage and strength returning back to me as you have done, and even as I race along, I can feel you fast approaching to join me. Your strong legs hurtling you along, coming up strong so I can almost feel your breath on my neck from behind.

Not even death could keep you from my side, could it, my trusted friend? Come; let us face the Black Tower once more; come, let us roar.

In response, you bellow thunderously, heralding our charge.

Be warned it cries out to the Tower and the evil therein; man and beast have come for you once again.

Sunday, August 9, 2015


Lately, I have been fixated by the idea that there is another me living directly underneath me.

Not in the apartment beneath mine, or even in the basement, but underneath the very ground, mirroring my every action, my every movement in a world opposite my own.

It began a few weeks ago when I was out for a jog in the park. I had taken the wooded path that went through the thick canopy of the trees, to get away from the hot sunlight; becoming distracted by how the rays of light flitted through the leaves prettily, I tripped on an exposed root and fell sprawling onto the hard-packed ground.

I was surprised more that hurt, yet the impacted winded me for a moment and lay there, feeling the cool soil against my skin.

Pushing up with the palms of my hands, I instantly felt the sensation of my palms coming into contact with what seemed like someone else's hands pushing back just underneath the surface.

The sensation startled me more than the fall and I scrambled back up to my feet and stared at the impression I had made on the ground. There was indeed the outlines of my hands but they were not depressed into the soil as they should have been from the impact, they only seemed level with the surface, as if they had been pushed back into position from the other side.

Shaking my head, I disregarded the thought and continued on my run, but that night, as I lay in bed, my mind drifted back to that sensation of someone underneath me on the ground and started to ponder if there were other dimensions sitting right next to this one, why could there not be one below; a world just underneath the surface where our opposites live and go about their lives counter balanced to those in this one.

The idea festered in the back of my head, distracting me during the day as I tried to focus on my work, and then consuming my thoughts while I walked home each night. A few times I nearly walked straight out into traffic because I was too busy looking down at the sidewalk under my feet, fooling myself into imagining feeling the footfalls of my opposite on the soles of my shoes through the concrete.

Searching online and even going to the library to research books on physics and theories of multiple universes, I became obsessed with the subject. Though, in all of the books and articles, most spoke of dimensions stacked metaphorically on top of one another, not actually sitting beside or on top of each other.

None mentioned being able to actually feel the other pushing back, but each day I became more convinced I could; convinced that the fabric between me and my other was somehow wearing thin.

The question is: could it wear out?

What if, through our constant contact with the thinning floor between our worlds we manage to tear a hole in the fabric between our worlds and we fall through, sucking everything down into each other's dimension, causing both to collapse into each other; obliterating both.

I know how ridiculous this sounds, and I cannot explain how it is possible, yet I believe that is what is happening. That is why I am writing to you.

I have stopped leaving my apartment; stopped setting foot on the floor unless absolutely necessary, for fear any more contact with fabric of the floor between our dimensions will only further damage it, thus destroying both our worlds.

I know you are reading this letter as we write it, so please, I implore you, stay off the ground; stay off the floor, and I will do the same.

Though I fear the damage is already done, I can feel you underneath me now; feel you sitting cross-legged on your bed, writing this letter to me as well.

Monday, August 3, 2015

The Darkness Below

The darkness was encroaching, soon it would swallow the light and there would be nothing; nothing except oblivion.

Looking up toward the shimmering rays of light that danced above him just outside the dome of the void he now sank further down into; teasing him, the heavenly beams seemed to pull away from him as he swung out a flailing arm to somehow grab hold and pull himself out of the blackness that threatened to suck him down below.

For a moment he let himself float in between the darkness and the light, the calm of the muffled silence washing over him even as the burning within his chest intensified. It was peaceful down here, all the troubles and stresses of the world above slowly fading as he began to drift downward.

He looked away from the mocking light and down into the dark; down into the vast blackness of the void, and felt it calling out to him to let go and let it enfold him within its icy arms.

However, his glance happened upon what he held in his left hand, the object that had brought him down into the deep in the first place, and the vividness of life above came back to him and he once again found himself filled with the desire to be in the light.

A surge of energy run through his body and he kicked and clawed his way out of the suffocating dark up into the dancing beams of light that played near the surface.

With a final, agonizing push of his exhausted arms he felt himself break through and out into the open air above.

Holding his treasure high in his left hand, he gave a triumphant shout as he gasped for air to fill his almost depleted lungs.

Blinking as the water dripped down his brow into his eyes he orientated himself so he faced his family who were gathered on the dock of their cabin on the sunny lake.

Wearily, he started to swim toward them as the shouted encouragingly for him to come back out of the water, all the while, holding his left arm in the air, not wanting his trophy to touch the inky waters ever again.

"I found it!" He tried to shout as water sloshed into his mouth and he sputtered and coughed. "I found Jimmy's shoe!"

He clutched tiny child's Velcro running shoe in his hand as if it were the most precious treasure the world had ever known.

"Good job, honey!" his wife said somewhat proudly. "But you didn't have to jump in after it, we have another three pair. They were on sale."

Her words could not tarnish his triumph as he swam close to where his son sat on the dock's edge, wearing his little, yellow life jacket, swinging his legs out over the water; one bare-footed, the other still wearing the matching shoe to the one he had dove down into the deep for.

Swinging his legs happily as his father came splashing toward him, Jimmy laughed; laughing and swinging; swinging and laughing.

Until, as he watched, Jimmy's other shoe was flung off his chubby little foot, arced into the sun-filled air, and then landed with a plunk into the deep, blue waters of the lake and began immediately to sink.

Sunday, July 26, 2015


The oppressive heat of the tunnels made Carmel feel as though she was traversing further and further into some gigantic oven; voluntarily baking herself alive.

The cluster of pipes that ran along the length of the tunnels sweated with the scorching steam that travelled within, so she had to be extra cautious not to touch the surface of them, else a slight brush up against them would sear her skin.

Sweat drenched her face as the moisture in the air caused her hair and clothing to cling to her already overheating body, yet she kept on moving deeper still; deeper and closer to the center of the mystery she was determined to uncover.

All of her life, she, and everyone living topside hundreds of levels above, had gone about their lives in the seemingly utopian city in the clouds, Himmel, unaware of the dark secret that dwelt directly below them in the depths of the massive floating island's engines.

Until, that is, a few weeks ago when Carmel and her friend Luciana were in the archives doing research for a project in history class and had stumbled upon an odd book.

What made it so odd was that it was so old and moreover, that it was not made of regular holographic paper as every other book in Himmel, but actual organic pulp-paper.

It had been wedge in behind the shelves of all the other identical, super-thin books as though someone had hidden it there for them to find.

Within the book, the fragile pages were filled with handwritten entries from whoever had authored it. The journal told of how the people of the city were being lied to by the Counsel of Elders and that there was a hideous secret that they hid from everyone; the secret of what actually ran the floating city.

The girls had snuck the book out of the archives easily because there would be no digital tracking on it like the other books housed there, and so they had hurried home to Carmel's family's unit, high up in the Avex Sector, to pore over its contents in secret.

The journal was hard to understand because of the scrawling writing, yet they followed along as the author told of a secret entrance to the tunnels below the city that led to the hidden engine room down deep within the bowels of the floating continent.

After searching for the clandestine tunnel entrance for weeks, Camel and Luciana had found it; an abandoned maintenance hatch in the dingy Hallum Sector that must have been long forgotten even to the Counsel for it was unguarded and, though the hatch wheel was rusty, unlocked.

Once they had found the entrance, they had gone back home to prepare for their journey to uncover the truth and snuck out after nightfall as the city powered down for the evening.

Steeling themselves, they hefted open the hatch and climbed down the rusty ladder that led down to the tunnel below.

At first, after getting over the darkness and initial scariness of the tunnels, the going was fairly easy, just long corridors of old pipes and wire casings that hummed constantly as they made their way down the seemingly never ending levels.

Every so often they had to choose which way to turn down a new corridor, and more times than not, the way they chose stopped in a dead-end of impassable pipes entering the thick metal wall, so they had to back track and go the correct way.

Until the door.

After what seemed like the entire night had passed, they had become weary and tired, so they stopped to rest and eat some of the protein snacks they had packed. While sitting there in the dim lamp light, Carmel had noticed a door at the far end of the tunnel. They had come across a few doors which led to the stairwells to the next lower level, but they had all been fairly thin doors with portholes through which they could see the stairs.

Yet, this was a big, thick door with no window and another hatch wheel, with what looked to be frost built up around its seams.

She pointed it out to Luciana, who said they probably should not open it because if it did not lead down then it was probably just some dead end room, perhaps a cold storage, which was causing the frost.

Carmel was already too curious to just let it be and so had gotten up and walked over to the hatch and hefted the wheel a turn. It spun more easily than the entrance hatch and before she knew it, the door was cracking open with a gushing of air.

Since she was already holding onto the hatch wheel, Carmel was able to keep herself from being sucked out of the door that opened right out into the frigid open air of the night sky.

Luciana was not so lucky.

Unprepared for the vacuum of air that was powerful enough to lift her right up in the air, she screamed as she flew toward the opening and hit her head on a low hanging pipe, knocking her unconscious.

Carmel watched in horror as her friend was sucked out right passed her and hurled into the star-filled night, falling out of sight silently.

Once the vacuum had depleted itself, the pull of the air outside died down so that she could crawl herself along the pipes and over to the next set of stairs, where she slammed the stairwell door shut and fell to the ground in a sobbing heap.

That had been what felt like a lifetime ago now, as she tried not to think about Luciana limp body falling forever downwards into darkness and wiped away the sweaty tears that welled in her eyes.

Now, she was almost to the end of their journey and was determined to find out the horrible secret the old journal had spoke of, and uncover the truth behind the lies the Elders were feeding to the masses back up on the surface.

She was determined for her friend, Luciana, and so kept on even through the maddening heat, down further into the ever-constricting tunnels.

Until at last she came to a final hatch, and had to cover her already singed hands with cloths torn from her sleeves in order to grab onto the wheel and wrench it open.

A gush of air from behind the opening door made her flinch and grip harder onto the scoring hot wheel, but it only let out a cooling breeze that felt like the refreshing open air compared to the stifling heat of the tunnel.

Hurriedly, Carmel went through the opening and let the door shut out the heat behind her.

Everything was dark in the coolness of the room she was now in and she once again turned on her lamp to light the open space in front of her.

All of the heat and energy of the outside tunnels must have been to keep this vast, open room cool, because she shivered as the drop in temperature caused the sweat on her skin to instantly go cold.

In the muffled silence of the dark room, she heard a laboured breathing from somewhere off in the middle of the open space. Moving as quietly as she could, Carmel crept closer to the sound which was then joined by the noise of rhythmic motion, a kind of trotting pace.

As she moved further into to the dim room, she could tell it was not just one individual in there with her, but many; a multitude of labouring beings, breathing heavily from their movements in the cold dark.

Abruptly, she hit into a metal railing that blocked her from going further and she could see a dim glow from what seemed like below her. She looked down from the ledge she must have been standing on to see figures moving in unison on the floor below.

As her eyes widened to adjust to the low light, she could make out the shapes of the massive amount of figures below.
Though never having actually seen them outside of picture books of old fairy takes, she recognized recognized the creatures instantly, and she gasped in shock.

For running on stationary treadmills, with wires connecting them to the light-filled machinery that lined all the walls around them, were thousands of galloping horses.

Himmel, it would seem, was run on horsepower.