Archive for Alex

Moonlit Madness

Posted in Art, Books, Inspiration, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 23, 2008 by blakejohnson

Well, here’s lovely Chapter 3 in my series in the “Well… What Would You Do?” series. I had to give the overall piece of work a name the other day to submit it to another site, so I decided on that, because I kind of think that’s what the story’s about, in part, just playing with people (characters) and seeing what they’ll do in a situation. It’s a fun journey to throw them on, and fun to explore the parts of my mind I haven’t really let out of the hatch yet ;). Enjoy.

NOTE: I’m also splitting them up now, so you’ll get a brief intro for the story and then just click on the “Read More” link at the bottom of this post and you’ll see the whole thing, just so it doesn’t take up my entire main blog page. Otherwise, keep reading!

Lizzy stood there in the hot dry desert, dumbfounded. Alex was waiting for a sign.

“How did we not notice the sand from the doorway?” Lizzy was walking back to the back door now, curious at how she could have managed to miss the fact that they were in a desert, but still in the same house. “It’s like the whole house just got up and-”
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Short Story Pt 2: Fun in the Sun

Posted in Art, Inspiration, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2008 by blakejohnson

The other day, I posted a short story I’d written the previous night, and the past few nights since I’ve been inspired over and over to continue the story. So now I have. I’m thinking of making it into a series, maybe eventually a graphic novel or something. For now, it’s fun to imagine it as a movie that just keeps getting crazier and crazier, and I’m trying to think of ways to keep it making sense, or at least keep it interesting. It’s already interesting for me, but for you guys, who are going to want some clues or something after a while, that’s going to be the challenge I think. But even now, it doesn’t seem that hard, really. Anyway, here’s part two, it’s a bit shorter (as if that were a problem, heh), so enjoy.

WARNING: There is a bit of cursing and adult themes in here. Only proceed if you’re sure you can handle it. 😉

Fun in the Sun

Lizzy got up, wiping her face of sleep and grime, the residue from the tendrils and their ooze now having dried to a crisp, dry crust, clinging as if glued to her skin. She walked to her own door, saw the room just as they’d left it, broken and full of holes. She looked in Dave’s room, he was gone, and his room looked just like hers. Alex stood behind her, half-crying, holding her hands up by her face, trembling with worry.

Lizzy turned around, seeing Alex, and walked past her into the kitchen. Alex followed.

“What do you want for breakfast?”
“What? Breakfast?” Alex asked, shaking her head slightly.
“Well yea. We can’t chase this thing on empty stomachs. Besides, I’m hungry.”

Alex stared for a moment, then walked slowly to the little table, sitting down and trembling. Lizzy walked to her room, and came out with a jacket. It had a hole or two in it, but was in good shape compared to the rest of the room. She laid it over Alex’s shoulders, then knelt down beside her.

“Look. You get warm and fed, we’ll look for this thing, and Dave. But crying won’t solve anything. I understand, but I’ve been single for over a year now, and it’s grating. I’m just gonna say it straight, so there it is. We’ll look, but you gotta pull together and be strong on the way, alright?”

Alex hardly moved.
“Ever seen Lord of the Rings, the third one?”
Alex nodded.
“Alright, well Sam’s right, but I’m not as strong as him, I probably can’t carry you. Not for long, anyway. We gotta both be like him. Alright?”

Alex nodded again. Lizzy stood, but Alex grabbed her wrist. She turned, and Alex pulled at her arm. Lizzy bent down as Alex embraced her, a stray tear sliding down her grime-dirtied cheek. Lizzy put her arm around Alex’s neck for a moment, then pulled away, flushed white. Alex sighed, and Lizzy walked to the stove, then said quietly, “You’ll be alright.”

Lizzy put a pan of eggs straight on the table, the heat sizzling the plastic covering, curling it around the base of the pan. It glued itself to the pan, and as she ripped it off, the covering came with it. “Shit!” Lizzy held it there for a moment, then flopped it back down on the table. “Well, it’s done now. I guess we can’t really fuck this place over any worse than hose bedrooms.” She sits down and hands Alex a fork. “Dig in.”

Alex takes a bite, then puts down her fork. She gets up and walks to the fridge, opening it up and looking in. The light’s not on, but she doesn’t notice.
“What, the burnt eggs not good enough?”

Alex grabs a bottle of juice from the fridge. And a beer, as a second thought. She opens the cupboard across the way, looks at the glasses, then at Lizzy. She shuts the door and plops the beer down on the counter. Then she grabs the juice bottle, screws off the top and takes a swig from the bottle. She sits down and hands it to Lizzy, who half-grins and swigs too.

“Glasses mean more dishes to wash. Smart thinking.”
“We’re washing dishes?”
“What do you think?”
And for the first time since Dave’s disappearance, Alex manages a small smile. She finishes off the eggs, and Lizzy offers her the first sip of the beer she’d already opened with her teeth. Alex takes the bottle and drinks a few sips, then hands it back.
“You can finish it. I need to get some things packed.”
“Right.” Then, after a pause and Alex’s almost out of earshot, “Thanks.”
Alex pauses in Dave’s doorway in acknowledgement, then continues into the room.

Lizzy downs the rest of the bottle in one breath. She slams the bottle down, cracking the base, giggling at herself and then throwing everything in the sink, filling it with water, but the faucet dies on her. “Aw, fuck it,” and she walks into her own room. She grabs her shoulder bag and some clothes, a sketchbook, reading book and her digital camera. She grabs the chargers without thinking, thinks better of it, but throws them in just the same. She grabs her change too, and wallet, “In case we need to buy supplies or something.”

Alex, just coming out of Dave’s room with her bag packed, looks up, “What?”
“Nothing.” She looks at Alex and her bag of clothes. “Grab some food too, we’re going to want to take as much as we can carry. Judging by seeing you two together, we’re probably not coming back until he’s with us, and even then I don’t know about facing the landlord after this damage to the place.”

Alex walks to the kitchen. Lizzy picks up her bag, throws it over her shoulder and straps it across her waist. She grabs another bag, a duffel from the closet, and slides her belt through the straps. She brings it out and loads some food into it. She zips it up and throws it over her shoulder too, fastening the belt around her shoulders in a half-assed carrying strap. She looks at Alex, also ready with a bag of food and clothes on her back. They look at each other and sigh.

“Alright, let’s go.” Lizzy heads to the door, looking out, it’s too bright to make anything out. Alex follows her. They step out into the grass-laiden yard with the concrete step entrance to the basement suite, but when they round the corner, Alex gasps and drops to her knees.

For as far as the eye can see, and even farther, for that matter, it’s pure desert. No more city, no more people, no more anything. Yellow-orange sand engulfs the house, now somewhat lopsided in the sand, as if it had landed there after a windstorm and the girls had just failed to notice the house was flying through the sky while they slept.

Dunes and caverns, hills and canyons of sand rose and fell for miles and miles (or kilometers, but they’re not technically in Canada anymore, as far as we know). The sun pierced the sky, a pure blue with an orangish haze to it, the sun itself burning the sand on which it shown. It felt like fire, only intangible. It felt like the pot on the plastic table cover, only this time it was pure light on skin, and there was no way to stop it. No way but to layer clothing, and in the heat of the day, that wasn’t an intriguing idea. They stared out at the sand for some time, until finally Lizzy swallowed.

“Well fuck me… no, seriously… go right ahead.”

Short Story – Night of the Tendrils

Posted in Art, Inspiration, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2008 by blakejohnson

Last night I was pretty randomly inspired at about 1 in the morning while lying in bed trying to get to sleep to write something. So I got up, turned on the computer and sat in my reading chair and wrote something. And this is what came out:

WARNING: There is a bit of cursing and adult themes in here. Only proceed if you’re sure you can handle it.

The Night of the Tendrils

Lizzy lay alone in her bed, looking up at the blackness before the ceiling. It was so dark in the basement apartment she’d recently found for herself in this new city. A place of fresh beginnings. She thought she’d try her hand at acting. “I could do that,” she thought. “No need to keep up the pretenses from living at home. I won’t know the people, and when I know them more, they’ll know me as the actress, and my reputation won’t be ruined. I could do that.” She was smug. Acting was no place for a quiet writer/drawer of a girl. But she wanted to try it anyway.

She laid there in the quiet dark, listening to her new roommate and his girlfriend in his room, whispering to each other in the dark. She wondered what they were saying. Not that it mattered, or concerned her. The girlfriend had been hesitantly friendly and the roommate was almost as quiet as she was. The fact that he was a guy and she was a girl and they shared the basement suite was awkward in itself, since they were strangers and not friends. Not yet, at least, she thought. She rolled over and tried to bury her head under the covers of her sheet and blanket combo, but the fake pillow didn’t let her relax.

She’d forgotten to pack a real pillow and had had to stuff a pillow case with shirts until she could find a real pillow somewhere for sale. She really needed to go back to that grocery store again. But where the hell was it? New cities are confusing. Her dad told her his dad would be proud; her instincts told her she should be proud, but it just wasn’t enough. She needed real comfort. And not just the kind offered by a soft, gentle pillow, though that’d certainly be a good start. She shut her eyes to the blackness, only seeing more blackness behind her eyelids. Or maybe her eyes rolled back into her head when she shut them, she’d hear that when she was younger but never been able to figure out if it really happened. Whenever she tried to open her eyes quickly, they caught up with her and she’d be staring at herself in mirror again feeling very foolish. So she tried to shut her eyes and think of things other than her lumpy pillow.

All of a sudden, she rolled over again. And looking up, saw the black. Again. Her roommate’s room was quiet now though. “Maybe now I can get some sleep,” she thought. She laid there and stared at the blackness some more.

Thick, black-green tendrils began to shroud her view. They oozed from the ceiling and the wall, twisting and turning, poking their beady little heads this way and that, reaching and crawling down the pale yellow walls of her little room. Lizzy just laid there and stared.
“What the fuck!?” She jumped out of her bed and the tendrils latched onto her arms and legs. She felt them pulling her upward. They felt cold, and oddly soothing in the warmth of the apartment.
“Don’t let them get you!” Her roommate’s girlfriend was in the doorway now.
“It’s a little fucking late for that, don’t ya think!?”The tendrils began pulling her harder, stronger. She grabbed for her chair, but they melted that. She grabbed for her little side table that was actually a cardboard box, but the tendrils burned that up. Her books, cell phone, bracelets, money, wallet, all of it, gone. Just burned. She couldn’t believe it. Until the tendrils started getting warmer. Then she could definitely feel where that heat was coming from.
“They’re getting hotter!”
The roommate’s girlfriend (who we’ll call Alex) began ripping at her night shirt, a wild look in her eyes. “And so am I,” she taunted.
“What!?” Lizzy couldn’t believe her ears. She was hanging upside down from the ceiling – which wasn’t that high off the ground – and the only person around to help her was a sci-fi/horror version of an S&M freak!? What the hell was going on here!?
Lizzy fought to grab one of the tendrils which were now burning through what little clothes she had on and beginning to sting her flesh.

Alex was slowly sauntering around the room, watching and ripping at her own clothes, tearing them into a tight, all-white but very revealing two-piece. She was indeed getting hotter. She had flames in her eyes and at the tips of her fingers to prove it.

The entire ceiling was pasted with this green goo, and dripping the toxic sludge everywhere, burning holes in the floor, in the bed, in the sheets, in that damn fake pillow. Alex almost got hit with a piece but she dodged it just in time, jumping onto a chair over by the desk and sitting down slowly on it as if someone who thought they were at a strip joint was watching. She slowly bent herself down and over, letting the tight bits of cloth come up even higher, revealing a tuck of skin here, a round, firm feature there. She swung herself around with the actual help of some of the tentacles, onto the back side of the chair, where, sitting on the top of the back, she spread her body out flat, horizontally balancing in mid-air, the tendrils now peeling back the layers of cloth she’d left on her body, and her writhing in joy and agony at the strands of fire she felt against her skin.

Lizzy almost screamed, but a pile of sludge fell on her face. She became more preoccupied with that than screaming. The ooze seared the flesh on her face, scarring the skin and piercing her muscles below. She thought she’d never see the light of day again. She couldn’t remember feeling this much pain. The agony went beyond her threshold for pain and left her reaching for ways to comprehend what was happening to her face. She ripped and tore with her hands at her face, stopping only when it began to hurt, and when she stopped, the tendrils were gone, and she was lying on the floor beside her bed, holes and all. She looked around and found Alex had turned on one of the lights in her room, on the desk. She was now sitting in the chair, trying to cover her now naked body with what was left of her clothes. Most of them had burned. Lizzy looked around and saw that she’d torn off bits of her face as well in her fit to rid herself of the ooze. When she could, she looked around some more.

“You can use some of my clothes in the cardboard box there, those are dirty anyway. Or the clean stuff in the drawers over there.” She pointed to the open doors of the closet, where most of the dresser had been burned away by flying bits of sludge and the occasional impact of a tendril or two. But now there was nothing but smoke and ash and steam.
“Thanks.” Alex didn’t move. She was too timid even to say more than that.
“What the fuck were those things?” Lizzy tried to stand, and decided sitting was fine.
“I don’t know. But Dave’s-” She trailed off.
“Dead!?” Lizzy wasn’t surprised, those things almost killed her, only she’d just met the guy.
“No, he’s asleep. He didn’t hear us, didn’t notice the whole thing when they came in to our room. Well… his room. But he didn’t even flinch.”
“Weird.” Lizzy decided to look out the doorway and see if she could see any damage to the rest of the apartment. She couldn’t. There was nothing out of place. Even the door to Dave’s room was locked, as usual. She didn’t know why he locked it, but he did. “Well, take my clothes from that dresser over there, we can split the couch or something. It’s tiny, but I”m not getting back in that bed. It’s torn to hell anyway.”
“That’s going to be a little weird… no offense…”
“None taken I-”
“…just with us not knowing each other and all.”
“-perfectly understand.”
“Ok. Well I guess it’s alright then… You’re not a lesbian, are you?”
“I’m tired. How about you?”
Alex grinned heartlessly. It was enough. “Alright.”
“You get changed and I’ll be out there. It doesn’t fold out, but it’s soft enough. So long as you don’t mind the noise it makes when you move on it. It’s killer when you’re trying to watch a movie, but it might be alright once you’re asleep.” Lizzy walked out into the living room, toward the sink in the kitchen area. She tried dowsing her face in water, but that didn’t help. She found a dish towel that still looked clean and drenched it in water. Then she wrung it all out, and left it damp. She wrapped it around her head, tied it in the back and left an opening where her eyes were.

Alex came tentatively out of the bedroom, now clothed in a large T-shirt and some boxer shorts. Lizzy couldn’t help but sigh. She liked those clothes, and now they had little holes in them. But Alex did look pretty in them, despite the ordeal they’d just been through. She trudged herself over to the couch and stood there for a moment. Lizzy came over, took off her sludge-covered shirt and shorts, or what was left of them anyway, and since she wore boxers and a sports bra anyway, she laid down on the couch and waited for Alex, who laid down next to her. On their sides, they both looked out at the blackness in the living room, fearing another attack, but feeling strange comfort in the body of a stranger. Lizzy sighed and closed her eyes, sliding her arm up and over Alex’s middle. Alex paused for a moment in her breathing, then continued, and let her hand follow Lizzy’s arm to her wrist, and her hand. Their fingers intermingled for a few brief moments, and then they were asleep. Peacefully, calmly, they slept together in the warm living room, Lizzy letting the cool dish towel on her face sit against the skin on the back of Alex’s neck. “Maybe it’ll cool her down a bit, calm her, or something,” were her last thoughts before she slept. Maybe she had to care to sleep.

The next morning, Lizzy was awoken by Alex’s frantic rattling of her shoulders.
“Lizzy, Lizzy, oh God, Lizzy!”
“mmmMRRAAA…. What!?” She wiped here eyes and slowly peeled off the bandage.
“It’s Dave, his room’s covered in that green stuff, there are holes and smoke and little sparks everywhere. And he’s… he’s… he’s GONE!”

Lizzy looked from Dave’s doorway to Alex, “Well, good fucken’ morning, world!”

Let me know what you think in the comments.