The Great Adventure – Part 1 –

“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.” ― Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild
youngdreamerlove
The trip began by assembling simple items that would benefit a grand adventure in the wild forests of unknown. A can opener, lighters, a couple of pocket knifes, cans of beans we surreptitiously obtained from mom’s cupboard, the obligatory camouflage jackets and pants, and of course a machetes to hack our way through the grass and brush. We made the mile trip to the wooded point right on the cliff above a shallow gulch. Pine trees formed a tidy circle around a clearing and their needles made a nice bed. The sound of wind blowing through these made an eerie sound, especially for boys like us at the ripe age of 14 and 15. Many long days were spent filled with exciting adventures into this government reserve, which by the way, we weren’t supposed to be in, which added to our sense of danger that all boys crave to some extent.
Climbing through the 8 foot chain link fence that surrounded it, we pushed our way through the tall grasses and crossed a couple of dirt roads worn with the convoys of jeeps, tanks, and supply trucks. The last obstacle we clambered across was a double row of razor wire that lined the fields. We knew all the paths and shortcuts here and had already squashed this down and laid branches over it to tip toe on. Finding things while we hiked was an awesome thrill. The biggest finds were items lost or left behind by the troops, MRE’s being the supreme score, followed by empty ammo bags that clipped on to belts, and shell casings, with which we filled our little bags and bringing a smile that only being incredibly stupid and getting away with it can bring to the little men we were.
Reaching the clearing, we built our rough lean-to and found sticks to build a fire. We didn’t understand that if you’re not supposed to be there, lighting a fire on the edge of cliff that overlooks much of the land around it, is not a good idea. But in our exuberance, we lit our little fire and boiled some water to add to a spaghetti MRE I found and heat the beans we stole from Mom. Night came soon and we settled in under our shelter and played with the fire, watching the sparks swirl and find their way up to the star filled sky. Our spot was lit up to the edge of clearing showing the trees and brush around us, beyond that it was pitch black and made the more so by gazing into the fire before we looked out toward the dark. The evening this far was uneventful and our stay in this forbidden zone an apparent success.
Suddenly, right behind our lean-to, a loud snap of branches shot through the night and right up our young spines. Hairs on end, we stumbled forward in a blind panic and grabbed the machete and large walking stick, hewn in boredom just moments before. Standing back to back, gazing at what we couldn’t see, our eyes struggled to make out any images, our ears keen to the slightest twitch of grass. Was it an animal? Or worse, the Military Police? The MP’s were more trouble but we out ran them several times because of our knowledge of the nook and crannies and subtle shortcuts and paths, but, the animals were a big problem. The paths we found were theirs and running wasn’t a good idea. We whispered back and forth having seconds to decide what to do and like most options presented to those caught, running like hell seemed to be the best way out. We sprung through the trees and bounced through the razor wire like an Olympic hurdler fueled by adrenalin and youthful agility. Hearing more snaps and bushes shaking supercharged our escape and made the dark obstacle course easy. Soon the mile was behind us and we dove through the fence finding our way home. We collapsed in excited jubilation with our hearts pounding out 200 beats a minute. The escape was pulled off without a hitch and our confidence grew to heights that can only be reached by imagination. This was a success, however there where things in life that wouldn’t be so easily overcome and these tests waited for us with hungry anticipation.
First published in Opinions Of Eye

Disease

“I swear, gentlemen, that to be too conscious is an illness – a real thorough-going illness.” ― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Notes from Underground 
“Despair filled his skull even more tightly than his own brain. All around him cars filled with normal people perfectly unaware of the disease turning Perry’s body inside out. Fucking normal people.” ― Scott Sigler, Infected   

He folded his arms, tightly, like a knot by a five-year-old, and scratching an unconscious itch, wondered at the bloody drop rolling down his aging skin. Wiping it away, he couldn’t help but taste the irony of death. The tics and eccentric behaviors that manifested since the incident made him an odd sort. It wasn’t his fault, he was told about the consequences of playing with the dark. The dark, always forbidding, forever in tales of lore and fables of heroes and damsels, wasn’t he warned? He wanted to see what was hidden, what moved and was caught out of the corner of his eye, begging an explanation. The blackness held an allure, pushing him into a sort of night that comes on those depressed and abused, and holds them, protecting and discouraging at the same time. On that night, he witnessed what others only pretended to know. 
Praying to the powers that kept life and death apart, he fell forward into the darkness, wholly accepting whatever lived there. As he strained to see, he knew that his senses were his friends, and not the eyes that betrayed him. The shadows boiled and rolled, threatening, yet, comforting. Things calling him, bringing whispers and tickles on the back of his neck. The holy house stood confident at the beginning, though the shadows within betrayed that camouflage. Some shadows were darker than others, malevolent and unforgiving. These fear provoking shades are the ones he desired, the dangerous, the despised, and angry forgotten ones, forgotten by fear and ignorance, chased away, but only in their minds, they drew his curiosity. As one gathered itself from the rolling chaos, it writhed up from the depths and called his name, not his given name, but a name he never knew, a name that reminded him of fairy tales and legends. This began his love affair with the dark and conceiving a hatred for the cursed disease called life. Others longed to live, but he, only to die. Life offered no solace, no hope, but the great emptiness of death, there a lover waited that never left and forever hissed the affection that only cold embraces can show.

Dying in the Witch

 “I love you,” he whispered, and that was the moment he knew what he was going to do. When you loved someone, you put their needs before your own. No matter how inconceivable those needs were; no matter how fucked up; no matter how much it made you feel like you were ripping yourself into pieces.” ― Jodi Picoult, The Pact
 

The light vacated her eyes and left a dull black, dull like wet rocks dried in the sun. I saw it, and ran to stay clear of that magic, only the most vile of curses could pull the life from the eyes of wizards. Hurrying to my home in the tangled roots and quickly pulling my herbs and potions from the cellar, I began making a remedy against this foe, glancing out the window at the dark eyes as the wizard became the witch. I knew she smelled my cure, her nose in the wind as the ears of the night prowlers pushed out beside her once beautiful face. How does this happen? Can purity be so easily chased from the soul? Crushing the ingredients, small clouds of dust surrounded the bowl as I poured in the cure. She crouched on all fours now, all innocence gone, the grimace of hunger replacing her kind and gentle smile. I poured in the oils of remedy and brought them to a rolling boil. She gazed intently at my door, the instincts from another world directed her to my haven. Picking up the pot from the fire, a sudden slam at the door almost made me drop the concoction, that and a frantic clawing and growling made my task all the more urgent as the sweat of my concentration dripped down my nose and into my brew. The door splintered under her assault, just as I filled a small bottle, and ran, tripping over my feet and stumbling into the cellar. The door here was made for protection and had a spell on it to prevent entry but I knew no incantation would keep me safe now. She saved me not so long ago, as I endured a moment with with wicked things of night and now I would die for the chance to repay that kindness. Shadows crept around the entrance as the smoky tendrils flung open my last refuge. I knew she would kill me, though she loved me, and with that impetus, I swallowed the cure. The potion ripped through me like freezing water, taking my breath and leaving me helpless before her mauling fangs. As the life slipped from me, I saw that the flesh she bit off allowed more of the cure to repel the evil that overcame her. With my last breath, I saw the light come back to her, and as she stood, beautiful and glorious, her lovely eyes glistened with the tears of my death.

Power of the Blade – Faith in action

   “Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother.” – Khalil Gibran

“If fear is cultivated it will become stronger, if faith is cultivated it will achieve mastery.” 
Swinging wildly, I caught the beast just under the jaw line. It’s chilled dark blood spewed across my chiseled chest and tainted my lips with the taste of iron. My blade performed perfectly, its power in the sound of visions, its speed in the echo of images burned in my mind from my youth. The creature fell like so many, and meat for the taking lay at my feet. The promise of the blade is that with unwavering certainty, the purpose of the wielder is accomplished. Like many of the nether regions promises, a condition of sort is implied. I cannot for one second doubt the accuracy and lethality of the keen edge and rune struck blade, for in that second of doubt, the blade dulled and its weighty course lost it’s objective. It’s quite disturbing to see my weapon lose its edge and become a twig in my hand. I learned over the course of many battles, that faith in that blade, gave me favor and strength in my choices as I pressed across this desert land. During one lengthy battle I lost my grip and it flew off down a steep ravine. Left with only a very ordinary staff, I forgot to lose faith…for so long I trained myself to never doubt, that I swung that wooden accessory and to my amazement, it hit home with the same unerring providence! I then learned that, the blade though magical, only served to train me, that though magic is strong, faith is stronger and even above the metamorphic power of unseen spells, my faith gave me the ability to transform the ordinary into that of perfect power. I found my blade, but, I never forgot the lesson. All things are possible with faith, and if I will just persevere with that faith, though I lost one advantage, another will fulfill my purpose just as well.

The Queen – Chapter 2 – The subjects of the Queen

The late afternoon turned to the late night, evidenced by the visible change in both volume and appearance of my queens subjects. The large middle aged blue collar slave, began to morph into, a slicker, more refined slave, those whose love for my queen, gave birth to other interests, like little meetings in the restroom, hushed conversation with obvious handshakes concluding their business. The toll my queen takes on her subjects spurred them on to more devious measures of support for her, their habit. I reached for what I thought was my last 10, and with disgruntled acknowledgment, got a small wad of pocket lint in return. My evening was over, time to make room for the others. I swayed a little when I got up, the servants of my queen were generous in their distribution of libations, knowing that it eased the passage of my money, her money, onto her throne. My breath, in a misty complaint of the cold air, clouded my sight as I walked out into the dull colors of the night. I breathed in deep, sorrow at having to leave my queen. Lowering my eyes, focusing on the crumpled paper blowing aimlessly at my feet, I followed it’s haphazard path down the street away from the throne. I felt the slight tap at my shoulder, it jolted me from my miserable summation, and turning, I see, my queen. Or was it? She had removed her royal garb, her hair a different color, (the wig hanging with her ornaments in the changing room). Her eyes softer, dare I say, innocent, without the heavy colors, the extended lashes, that brought out their seductive gaze from the dark. Speaking a whisper in my ear, I knew, it was her, my queen, her voice had confirmed her bond. She still had control, even in this visage. I knew, in a few soft words, my role of servant, now went to protector…amazing how she can put me in positions that I never thought I could fill. I, the newly knighted slave, threw my coat around her. Come my queen, I’ll protect you, youll be safe with me. This is why I work my mundane, back breaking job, so I might protect her and escape from the listless world that was mine, outside this Queen’s castle.

Related Posts: The Queen, 
Also Published in: Broowaha
  4.bp