White naked moms

2020.11.19 15:03 LukeH883 White naked moms

Sexy white girls twerking clothing such as yoga pants leggings and booty shorts also naked
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2019.04.15 21:31 White naked moms

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2020.11.25 15:51 _certified_ White naked moms

I just bought an IDE to USB cord to save an old harddrive of mine.
But i realize now that i only got the "classic" white 4pin power connector -> to sata. I.e i cant plug in power to the harddrive without opening my chassi and even then the cord is so short it will be alot of problems.
Is it safe/possible to have an old PSU just naked out of the chassi (on my desk) connected to my wall outlet and just run the power for the harddrive thru that? I dont know why but something tells me its not a good idea, also might it fry the harddrive? I intend to use the PSU from the old PC that the HDD was originally in.
3.5 Old HDD -> IDE to USB connected to my main PC
Old PSU on my desk connected only to the old HD and my wall-power outlet.
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2020.11.25 15:33 AvEx_SoL White naked moms

Prologue
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
——————————————————————————-
Ryker sat back and dug his toes into the sand, closing his eyes he let the warmth of the sun swaddle him as he breathed the salty air.
The sound of distant laughter mixed with the rhythmic crashing of the waves sounded half muted as he relaxed deeper into the beach. Ryker lazily half opened his eyes as the sound of seabirds squawked overhead. There was hardly a wisp of cloud in the pale blue sky.
Not a bad way to spend the afterlife, Ryker thought to himself. At least after the fight with the night men in the mountains he would be allowed to re live in his blood and he had chosen such a serene moment, one of Ryker’s very favourite. He sat up and looked at the people on the beach, all dressed in brightly coloured clothing. That was one thing that he couldn’t get used to, the sheer amount of colours they would wear. He pondered over each of the groups around him; one of these people were his ancestor, but which he could never tell.
The witch of Kalki had taught him that his nightmares were not from a curse but a gift blessed by the great Kalki, the gift to see into the memories of his family. All he had to do was learn to control it, after months with the witch he still couldn’t get the full grasp but he had learnt much.
His own memories were the easiest to control, as he had already lived them. But those before him were harder, he could only walk in the past if his ancestors had formed a strong connection to the memory. He still couldn’t identify which of the people on the shore he shared blood with, but it was peaceful and a happy time.
Suddenly Ryker felt dizzy, the world around him rippled and distorted. The sounds of laughter changed into a low buzz as everything around him slowly faded into a murky blackness. His skull felt like it was being torn in two from the inside. Ryker doubled over screaming as flashes of blinding white stabbed at his eyes.
Ryker couldn’t tell how long he was in pain, he couldn’t focus on anything apart from it, every part of his body now burned like he was laying inside the fires of the crater of silence. No matter how hard he tried to remember anything, all he could conjure was more pain. He tried to open his eyes and bare the blinding flashes long enough to see what was happening but to no avail, just blackness cut with flashes.
He sobbed to himself, what type of curse was this? To travel to the afterlife and still be haunted by pain! “I died with honour!” Ryker screamed through the pain “I am Warlord of Kalki! And even in death I will not become a slave to pain! Show yourself haunter! Daemon! Face me or leave me to my afterlife!” Ryker gave himself strength as he shouted into the dark and managed to get himself to his knees. He spent his life fighting and it would seem he would have to continue the fight.
The flashes slowly left from behind Ryker’s eyes and surrounded him in columns. With each strike they moved closer and closer until it was one dazzling beam of pain strobing before him. The column began to compress and warp until it was roughly the same size as Ryker.
The daemon accepts, Ryker muttered to himself as he pushed himself up through the agony and prepared to fight his tormentor. The light carried on shifting until it was the shaped of someone covered in a sheet.
Just as suddenly as the pain started, it vanished. The light became a woman, naked and panting clutching her head. Who was this ghost? Thought Ryker not letting his guard down, She looks as if she felt the same pain as I.
The woman slowly opened her eyes and took a blinking look at Ryker. She rubbed the shaved side of her head and laughed. “What are you daemon. Why do you torment me, what do you want” Ryker demanded to the apparition stood in front of him
The woman blushed as she looked down and tried to cover her nakedness and squeezed her eyes shut. When she opened them again she looked down at herself and tensed up and shut her eyes tight again “What is she doing” Ryker asked himself. It was then he looked at himself and noticed he was still in the strange clothing from the beach. “Not fitting to fight whatever this thing was” now the pain and fog had lifted from his mind he could think clearly. He focused a thought on the battle of the united clans, and specifically the armour he wore. The bright coloured clothes shimmered and were replaced with a burnt red padded armour adorned with a human skull on the left shoulder plates.
The woman gasped at the sight of him and tried to cover her body more and squeezed her eyes shut once again. She cried out when her eyes opened again weakly she spoke to Ryker in a strange language. It seemed familiar somehow, he had heard it before but couldn’t place where. She pointed at Ryker then to herself. She blushed more when Ryker looked her up and down.
What did she want? Why was she here? Clearly she wasn’t a daemon, maybe a lost soul? The witch had said that there were souls who couldn’t find afterlife. Where did he know the language from? He thought to himself. It was similar to memories he had walked through but slightly different. Then he remembered. He remembered the attack on his tribe, he remembered hearing that language as he and his best fighters scrambled into an old bunker, he remembered hearing that language as fire stones ripped through him as his spear found enemy flesh. He remembered the Night men who killed him.
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2020.11.25 15:04 millionvirgo White naked moms

Age- 21
Sex- Female
Height- 5'5
Weight- 125
Race- white
medical issues- Central Vertigo, family history of Heart Disease, Diabetes
current meds- none
drug use- I smoke marijuana every day
duration- a year
For the past year I have had extreme night sweats regularly. Last night for example... I set the thermostat at 69 degrees and turned my fan on high speed, wore a crop top and loose silk pants to bed, I still woke up about 2-3 times in the night drenched in sweat. I usually end up taking my pajamas off and sleeping naked. Even after doing this I will get super hot and then immediately get really cold if I do something to alleviate the heat.
Also, throughout the day I get so many mini hot flashes and chill flashes (if thats even a thing). At least 15 a day, combined or of each. They only last about 10-15 seconds each but its so frustrating and uncomfortable. Because I will get super hot, especially in my arms and then it'll go down and I get very very cold in those areas. If I wear a jacket or a sweater I will start sweating so I take it off, but then 2 minutes later I'm so cold I have to put it back on. Then I get hot flashes again... so I take it off. The cycle just repeats.
I'm getting restless and uncomfortable. I've experienced a hot flash and the chills just writing this post. Sleep is becoming very difficult. Every time I research this anything that comes up is about menopause. I just got off my period so I highly doubt I'm going through menopause at 21.
***Also, side note cause I think these might matter?
I am horrible at taking my birth control pill. All year I've just fucked it up, either taking it too late or not at all which has caused me to have irregular periods. I know this is irresponsible, I am working on getting a different method of birth control because the pill is just not for me. But I stopped taking the pill about a week and a half ago, and my prescription expired so I don't plan on getting back on it.
My diet is not good. I can't eat a lot, and when I do I get stomach aches sometimes. I know its bad but I can't do anything about it. I feel hungry but nothing seems appetizing to me at all so a lot of times I just won't eat. I also don't drink as much water as I know I should.
submitted by millionvirgo to medical_advice [link] [comments]


2020.11.25 14:31 cleanyourbedroomboy White naked moms

For a moment, there was nothing but a terrible silence. During this silence, I didn’t exist. Everything I loved, things I loathed, my future and my past, they were never there, and I myself, was emptiness. Slowly, but eventually, the world faded back into existence around me.
The first thing I heard was my heavy breathing, forming blankets of mist in the distance ahead of me. The room was unsettlingly cold.
Marion was still. A deep redness emerged from her chest; her blood soaked into her clothes and her hands trembled. Her eyes were wide from shock and tears flowed down her cheeks. She had come back to realization. Her body fell with a thud, coiling up, and death took her immediately.
Zackary’s body still twitched; a man in excruciating agony. I couldn’t tell if there was any will left in him to live, but I did know that he was beyond helping now.
I pushed myself against the wall behind me, and forcibly pushed myself up to my feet, only to fall again on my knees. I vomited all over the floor, my knees trembled and my chest felt weak.
I struggled to stand up again, but using every last bit of strength I had in me, I finally managed it and went out the room. Anna was still there. She was alive, but still in shock.
I placed my arm on her shoulder, “Anna…we have to leave…” I told her. She didn’t react. She seemed a prisoner in her own body.
“Anna please…” I said again. A futile attempt.
“Fuck it.” I said, forcibly pulling her up to her feet, but doing so was a mistake. She screamed the loudest, most painful scream I have ever heard; so much so that I expected that it would tear her throat apart. She clawed at me with her nails, opening a cut on my cheek. She had gone feral.
I pushed her away, and she continued screaming and sobbing on the floor. She was lost as well. I had to leave.
My phone buzzed in my pocket, and I pulled it out immediately, seeking refuge in the light of the little screen as a distraction from the horrors that had just unfolded.
Up on the screen there was a new notification. It was a text from Billy.
Apparently, the only relation between the three bodies and the girl Torri, was the fact that they all used to be in a charitable rehab run by Zackary Levitt.
Torri…Zackary…Dina, Lem and Jack, there was something about these names that bound them together, other than the fact that the four addicts used to be at Levitt’s rehab centre.
Zackary Levitt had made a name for himself in the town, he had been given control of his father’s business and his ambition got him to be one of the richest men in town. A lot of his wealth went into funding his own charitable organisations.
I felt reluctant and even some amount of disgust in what I did next, but I knew that this was the only way I would find some answers.
I turned the lights off, and shut the front door. I hoped that the gunshot hadn’t attracted any neighbours, and even though chances of that were slim, considering that the house was fairly isolated, I didn’t want to take any chances.
I would go through the room quickly, and make my way out of the house.
I searched through the wardrobes, going through piles of dresses and shirts, and even the drawers. Every moment I spent searching through their house for clues, I became more convinced that I would definitely find something if I look hard enough.
I searched up almost through the entire house deeper into the night, uncaring for the time. I knew… I definitely knew that what I was doing was wrong, and that I should call and report all the horrific mess that had happened in this house, but I also didn’t want to loose my chance of finding a clue.
Every time I heard a creak, or Ann sniffled too loud, I took cover, fearing the worst, cocking my gun, ready for whatever was to come, but thankfully, nothing ever came.
The attic was where I finally found something. It was the place I was the most reluctant to go to. I knew that once I was up there, it would be hard to make it out in case someone got in the house.
In a box, that I observed, wasn’t so dusty, I found something. There were albums. I picked up one which, like the box, seemed to be less dusty.
Mostly, there were pictures taken from, as far as I could tell, nine or ten years ago. There were pictures from high school, from parties, even vacations. I didn’t spot Anna in any of them so I assumed that this contained only Zack’s old memories.
Skimming through the pages of the album, I felt increasingly worse, knowing that the lively young man I saw in these pages had come to meet a horrible fate. Though I couldn’t say I really cared for the Levitt’s much before, but seeing how happy he seemed before what became of him, or rather, what remained of him just under my feet… it was disturbing.
Then, I spotted something that caught my eye. There was a picture of Zack with a bunch of other people, faces I knew. There was Torri, right there in the picture, a little younger than she is now, actually, a lot younger. Perhaps 15 or 16, and there, she was next to Zack at a party.
And then a thought hit me. What if there had been more faces here, faces that I was familiar with, but I wasn’t looking for. Maybe this was the clue, the missing piece that bound everything together?
I looked into the box, finding another album there which contained nothing but family photos, I opted to look through that one again. This time, I saw it. I saw everything that was missing in this deranged puzzle.
Zack didn’t have kids of his own, instead, opting to adopt a child, who’s mother lost custody after she was deemed to be an unfit guardian. She was an addict and ended up in Zack’s rehab. Dina, Lem and Jack, the four dead addicts who had bits of their skin torn off weren’t a random group of junkies that got together and just happened to meet an unfortunate fate, they went to the rehab as well.
And not only that, they had been friends with Zack all through high school. They didn’t have any children of their own.
I searched up the name Elizabeth Grimes, one of the first children to go missing. I somehow was certain that I was now on the right track, that I had finally pulled onto the right string that would put everything in place.
The six children, Elizabeth, Michael, Marion, Jade, Chris and Don, their parents, all with the exception of one Marqus Piper, either their father or their mother, in Elizabeth’s case, both of them, were amongst Zack’s friends in high school. Their parents weren’t random classmates, not just colleagues, from the pictures I saw, they were all definitely friends, and close friends at that.
I took the album with me when I left, carefully making my way down and then across the hall, where Anna was, still as ever.
I went down the stairs, and rushed to my car. Only when I gripped the steering and felt familiarity of it, I felt somewhat lighter. It was as if I was no longer in the presence of some great evil that had taken that house.
Then, another thought hit me. Torri Reid. She was the only one in the group still unharmed. She hadn’t been killed, or she didn’t have a child. Perhaps she was somehow involved? No…couldn’t be… she was a junkie.
What about Greta? Why did she go missing? And Dan? Were these incidents unrelated? No, this was too much of a coincidence.
And Marqus, how did he fit in all this? Was it because he was a student at Dan’s school? Maybe. Or, maybe it’s nothing related. No, of course it was related… his head was discovered only because of Dan.
I slammed my fist into the wheel letting out my frustration. Everything was so close to coming together, and yet, there was just one little piece that was missing. The final piece that somehow bound my son Dan, into this. And the “skinned witch” or whatever that was.
Torri Reid… there was something about her… something that could bring it all together. Afterall, she was the only survivor, I assumed, to this mess. Torri and Ellen used to be friends… maybe I could talk to Ellen instead.
Then I paused for a moment. The thought sank in. Ellen… Ellen had a child…. She was pregnant.
No…
What if Ellen, not Torri, Ellen, was the last piece.
My eyes widened in fear and I fished out my phone once again, dialling up my daughter’s phone. Every second it went unanswered, I felt my heart skip a beat.
I didn’t wait, I drove out of there as fast as I could, and to Ellen’s house.
Snow began to fall once again, piling up in layers on the windows of my car. All the while, I kept on calling her number.
I’m coming Elle…please be safe… I mumbled over and over, almost like a chant. I was getting anxious every second I wasn’t with her.
Grotesque images began to take over my thoughts, fuelled by the horrible things I had witnessed back at the Levitt’s place, and the ringing of the phone was the only thing keeping me from getting lost in my waking nightmare.
He’s been singing, and dancing to the songs of the skin witch. The phone continued to ring, and then beep, unanswered. I dialled again, too stubborn to let fate have its way. Something awful was happening to this town, and judging by whatever had happened the past year, I knew that my daughter was probably a part of this fucked up puppet show.
The weather was not normal, and even though it had been a while since I had accepted that, I still couldn’t bring myself to be surprised. Like I said, I was in a nightmare, and now, I felt as if nothing could surprise me anymore. The world as I had ever known was a lie, and the curtains of its stage had begun to fall apart, revealing a much more malicious truth; one that was an ugly truth that we hadn’t come to accept yet.
The phone beeped again, unanswered and I put it to my ear, my eyes still focused on the road ahead.
I bit my lip in anticipation as the ringing began again.
“Hello?” I asked as I heard someone answer. “Elle? Are you safe?” I asked frantically, anticipating an abrupt reply, which never came.
My patience was wearing thin, I didn’t wait for her to speak, and I went on to ramble, “Elle? It’s dad? Are you there?”
There was the sound of heavy breathing from the other end. Someone was there.
“Elle?” I asked again, louder. “If you’re there just please…PLEASE! Say something!”
The heavy breathing continued and I took a moment, anticipating a word from the other side at any moment now. I anticipated the slow heavy breathing from the other side to break its silence at any moment now, counting down every exhale and every inhale until a word was spoken. In my mind, I constantly told myself with every inhale I heard that now, anytime now…speak up Elle…
Another sharp inhale, followed by nothing. This time I knew that she would finally break her silence, that something would finally be said.
I felt a sharp touch of light on the right of my face. I turned to face its direction, my mind still lost on the heavy breathing and the unsettling silence from the other side when I was blinded by the high beams of the car charging directly at me. I dropped the phone in shock as the car slid off road and down the side on the ice. My head spun and darkness began to take over my mind, pulling me down towards unconsciousness, but that wasn’t to happen.
I felt my ears sing as I sat, still strapped to the car. Blood dripped down my face, my body spiking with adrenaline. I knew I was hurt; I knew that I was bleeding but I couldn’t tell where. I was blinded by the blood, and the dark. I felt dizzy and I felt my chest pound. I felt damp, with sweat or blood, I couldn’t tell.
I tried to wriggle out of the seat, but a sharp pain jolted up my left shoulder every time I moved. I coughed, spitting blood up and felt my head go heavier.
With my fingers I fumbled around, pushing them into whatever surface they could feel in an attempt to get myself out of the car, which I was afraid would start to burn up at any moment.
The car door opened somehow, my ears still ringing and I saw someone reach in, and click open the belt, leaving me free to heave myself sideways and out of the car.
I needed to get away from this person, whoever this was, they carried my death. I could feel it, my intuition was clear as day.
The snow slowly layered onto me, burying little flakes into my hair. I wanted to scream, but I didn’t have the strength for it. I felt tears well up and make their way down my cheeks as I crawled onto the ice. The pain was hellish, and for a moment I wondered if I actually deserved all this. Maybe a painful death like this is what I get for not being a father to my children, to my son, Dan. I was too hard on him, and somewhere, I shifted all the burden I carried of Sharon’s death to him. I had given him pain, pain he didn’t deserve on top of what he gave himself. I had been cruel, and this was my punishment. This is what fate had for me.
With the final strength I had left in me, I rolled over and faced up, my back pressed into the cold terrain below. The last thing I would ever see was the face of my killer. I had to see his face before I die.
The man walked up to me; the car burst into flames behind him. He didn’t flinch. The lights behind him obscured his features, revealing only his silhouette. It was definitely a man.
His hands were wrapped around a crowbar. I shuddered at the idea of being beaten to death with that thing, but I spat blood, and exhaled, embracing my death. I would show him no fear. If he had a craving for watching me suffer, I shall disappoint him.
He stopped. The ringing in my ears faded away, and he fished into the pocket of his coat. His phone rang again, and I saw him press in onto his ear before answering it.
“Yes?” I heard him say. His manner of speaking felt too proper, almost familiar. His voice was somewhat regal, and his tone was calm and very melodious, almost as if he practiced speaking these words over and over again.
A stillness came over the man, and I knew that feeling that was now in the air. I was familiar with it. Disappointment.
“Yeah.” He said into the phone. “Fuck…”
He walked up to me, crowbar still in hand. I didn’t know if the call he just got was supposed to be better for me or something worse, all I could do was wait and see.
The man lowered himself, his knees bent and the crowbar now held in both his hands. He had greying hair, an older man than me, his face was wrinkled and aged. But his most peculiar feature was his smile. I would never expect that the person who would kill me would ever have a smile like that. It wasn’t something grotesque or evil, nothing malicious, but gentle, and sympathetic. Almost comforting in my last moment.
“Well Mr. Vale… seems though we have to make do with you.” He said, his brows twisted and his face turned into a frown.
“Kill me…” I said in a low groan, “Kill me and be done with it…”
He stood up, and slung the crowbar over his shoulder, “For now, you live.”
He tossed the crowbar and walked up behind me. He placed his hands behind me, under my shoulders and pulled me up, onto my feet. I cried out in pain; my shoulder felt like it was still tearing apart. I tried my best to resist but I couldn’t. Most of my body had started to go limp. He was too strong for the age he looked. He dragged me, my feet limp and leaving bloody trails in the snow.
I counted to three in my mind, and then pushed myself forward, out of the man’s grip and onto the ground, falling and putting almost all of my weight on my injured shoulder and the world went dark.
I vaguely remembered passing in and out of consciousness. My face was pressed against the window of car, I remembered streaks of light passing by, fading into darkness and then back into my sight. Eventually, I let go and hands of darkness pulled me down into a blissful oblivion that was unconsciousness.
I don’t know how many hours passed by, but I did eventually wake up.
The room was dimly lit. That, and it was cold, painfully cold. I tried to move but my limbs felt weak. I was in pain. I wasn’t expecting to wake up again, I was convinced that I would die.
I moved, feeling the cold concrete under my skin. I was naked. I knew now why it felt so cold in here.
How was I not dead yet?
My hands were bound behind my back with a metal chain, cold against my skin. At the time I felt nothing but an overwhelming thirst. I needed water.
“W…” I tried to say, but my throat was as weak as the rest of my body. “W…”
I blinked again, looking directly ahead of me. There was something placed on the middle of the room, illuminated by a dangling light bulb, casting disturbing shadows all around the room, and on the red door behind it. Around it, were candles, many candles, arranged in careful circular patterns. The light they gave off was almost negligible.
One look at it made my skin crawl, and I curled up back in fear, the abrupt movement sending jolts of pain shooting up my shoulder and my leg.
It was a skeleton.
I coughed, and spat blood onto the floor, averting my eyes from the sight. Was this going to be my fate? Was I to be skinned alive?
The door opened and in stepped a man. The dangling light illuminated only one half of him at a time. And when the light swung again, I finally could see the rest of him. He had only one half of his face, the rest was skinned away. I was right. This was him. There was nothing familiar about him, but from all that I had put together, I had some idea of who he was.
“Dan?” I asked. “Dan!”
The man looked down at me and grunted, walking up behind me and fumbling with my chains.
“Answer me!” I yelled.
The man made no reply.
Maybe this wasn’t him. Maybe this wasn’t Dan. I couldn’t tell anymore. I don’t think I could even tell who I was at this point.
He escorted me out of the room, up the stairs and onto the living room of the house, a house I was very familiar with.
There, in the middle of the room of that cursed house, the house where I lost my wife, was a chair. Two children, from what I could tell they were Elizabeth Grimes and Jade Barker, two of the missing children. They coated the wooden chair with bits of a soft, lumpy material, which I very well knew was flesh.
Blood dripped down from it, circling and forming puddles under the legs of the chairs.
I wanted to close my eyes, shield myself from this disturbing sight, but I had to know. I really had to know.
The older man appeared, my captor. He stepped forward. His hair was coated red with blood. The man with the half face stood still, holding my chains as if I was some kind of an animal.
He looked down at me, his face contorted into a grave expression. The man was tense, I could even sense a hint of fear.
“Where’s your daughter?” He asked, his face conveyed a million things, and now it conveyed hints of panic.
I smiled. I feared for a while that they had my daughter here as well; I was glad to know I was wrong.
“You have to tell us where she is… you have to…” She’s with the skinned witch “Please, if not, the great winter will return once again and everything you have ever known will die.” She’s with the skinned witch.
My thoughts kept on repeating the same words over and over again. I felt a chill go up my spine, and the last thing I saw was the older man’s eyes widen as he hurried towards me, while my body went limp and my vision white.
I woke up in snow. The world around me was locked in a raging snowstorm. I was still naked, yet, I didn’t feel the cold anymore.
I walked in the snow, guided only by a strange intuition. This… this was a dream, and yet, it was much more vivid, much richer than a dream could ever be.
My body felt intact. I wasn’t injured anymore, my shoulder felt fine, my knees felt fine. I felt no fear, no anger, no sorrow, I felt nothing, I was nothing.
The walk in the snow eventually got me to a path, marked with smeared blood and bits of flesh. I felt indifferent to it and kept going.
Ahead in the snow, I saw something. A puddle.
Slowly, I made my way to it. Every part of my body telling me to move forward. The snow told me to move forward. Even the wind whispered in my ear to keep going, and I did.
The puddle was dark, and red, full of warm blood, steaming in the cold winter world.
I knew I had to look, and I did, I looked. My own face looked back at me, along with Greta’s and Ellen’s. They were both here, right here in this winter world. Whatever had brought them in here had brought me along as well.
I turned back, expecting to see my daughter and my sister around. They weren’t. I was alone in here.
“Look closer.” I heard the wind whisper. “Look closer.”
I looked closer, not knowing exactly what I was to look for. I placed my hand into the puddle, expecting its warmth to soothe me. Rather, I felt nothing, just as I didn’t feel the cold of this land. What I felt was a hand in there. I grabbed onto it and it grabbed on to me, and I pulled it out, dragging along with itself a mass. A frail, old and wrinkled mass of a woman, a very old woman. Like the one I saw back when I was at Ellen’s place.
I felt my heart pound, the woman placed her hand on mine. She had four fingers.
She placed her hand on my chest, and as my heart beat slowly within, I could feel very word she said.
“Stan…it’s been so long….”
“Sharon?”
The old woman nodded.
“Wait…” I said, sensing movement. “No…” The dream began to fade from me and I felt as if I was falling through cosmic heights. I felt my consciousness fade between the waking world and… whatever this was.
The smell of gasoline was the first thing I sensed. It crept up my nostrils and for a moment I thought that I was doused in it.
Gunshots rang out around me and I woke up to find myself on the floor, my mouth gaped open and a puddle of my own drool was formed around my face.
The old man lay dead next to me. A bullet hole had been opened up in the middle of his face, between his nose and his cheek.
The half-faced man was nowhere to be seen, and neither the children. I heard heavy footsteps behind me and a hand pulled my up abruptly to my feet. My chains rattled behind me.
A coat wrapped around me, a warm dark coat.
I turned back to look.
“Dan?” There was no mistaking this. I felt the familiarity of him, of his touch. He pushed me behind himself, throwing a lit match at the chair, setting it on fire.
“Dad…” I heard him say, “We need to go.” As he raised his gun and fired at the door frame besides him.
We went out in the cold and I almost fell on the ice, but he caught me before I could. I felt his arm touch my shoulder and the pain shot back up, this time, I fought to keep myself up, and running along with him.
He sat me down in the passenger seat of a car, and began to abruptly drive away.
I watched the house diminish in size as he drove back, the flames took over it, consuming it from inside and out. It burnt down, along with all the manner of evil I had witnessed within it.
As we drove away, I realised that I had more questions now that I had answers, but now, what I needed now was some rest, and hopefully I would find it in a long, dreamless sleep.
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2020.11.25 14:21 cleanyourbedroomboy Winter Kingdom Part V

For a moment, there was nothing but a terrible silence. During this silence, I didn’t exist. Everything I loved, things I loathed, my future and my past, they were never there, and I myself, was emptiness. Slowly, but eventually, the world faded back into existence around me.
The first thing I heard was my heavy breathing, forming blankets of mist in the distance ahead of me. The room was unsettlingly cold.
Marion was still. A deep redness emerged from her chest; her blood soaked into her clothes and her hands trembled. Her eyes were wide from shock and tears flowed down her cheeks. She had come back to realization. Her body fell with a thud, coiling up, and death took her immediately.
Zackary’s body still twitched; a man in excruciating agony. I couldn’t tell if there was any will left in him to live, but I did know that he was beyond helping now.
I pushed myself against the wall behind me, and forcibly pushed myself up to my feet, only to fall again on my knees. I vomited all over the floor, my knees trembled and my chest felt weak.
I struggled to stand up again, but using every last bit of strength I had in me, I finally managed it and went out the room. Anna was still there. She was alive, but still in shock.
I placed my arm on her shoulder, “Anna…we have to leave…” I told her. She didn’t react. She seemed a prisoner in her own body.
“Anna please…” I said again. A futile attempt.
“Fuck it.” I said, forcibly pulling her up to her feet, but doing so was a mistake. She screamed the loudest, most painful scream I have ever heard; so much so that I expected that it would tear her throat apart. She clawed at me with her nails, opening a cut on my cheek. She had gone feral.
I pushed her away, and she continued screaming and sobbing on the floor. She was lost as well. I had to leave.
My phone buzzed in my pocket, and I pulled it out immediately, seeking refuge in the light of the little screen as a distraction from the horrors that had just unfolded.
Up on the screen there was a new notification. It was a text from Billy.
Apparently, the only relation between the three bodies and the girl Torri, was the fact that they all used to be in a charitable rehab run by Zackary Levitt.
Torri…Zackary…Dina, Lem and Jack, there was something about these names that bound them together, other than the fact that the four addicts used to be at Levitt’s rehab centre.
Zackary Levitt had made a name for himself in the town, he had been given control of his father’s business and his ambition got him to be one of the richest men in town. A lot of his wealth went into funding his own charitable organisations.
I felt reluctant and even some amount of disgust in what I did next, but I knew that this was the only way I would find some answers.
I turned the lights off, and shut the front door. I hoped that the gunshot hadn’t attracted any neighbours, and even though chances of that were slim, considering that the house was fairly isolated, I didn’t want to take any chances.
I would go through the room quickly, and make my way out of the house.
I searched through the wardrobes, going through piles of dresses and shirts, and even the drawers. Every moment I spent searching through their house for clues, I became more convinced that I would definitely find something if I look hard enough.
I searched up almost through the entire house deeper into the night, uncaring for the time. I knew… I definitely knew that what I was doing was wrong, and that I should call and report all the horrific mess that had happened in this house, but I also didn’t want to loose my chance of finding a clue.
Every time I heard a creak, or Ann sniffled too loud, I took cover, fearing the worst, cocking my gun, ready for whatever was to come, but thankfully, nothing ever came.
The attic was where I finally found something. It was the place I was the most reluctant to go to. I knew that once I was up there, it would be hard to make it out in case someone got in the house.
In a box, that I observed, wasn’t so dusty, I found something. There were albums. I picked up one which, like the box, seemed to be less dusty.
Mostly, there were pictures taken from, as far as I could tell, nine or ten years ago. There were pictures from high school, from parties, even vacations. I didn’t spot Anna in any of them so I assumed that this contained only Zack’s old memories.
Skimming through the pages of the album, I felt increasingly worse, knowing that the lively young man I saw in these pages had come to meet a horrible fate. Though I couldn’t say I really cared for the Levitt’s much before, but seeing how happy he seemed before what became of him, or rather, what remained of him just under my feet… it was disturbing.
Then, I spotted something that caught my eye. There was a picture of Zack with a bunch of other people, faces I knew. There was Torri, right there in the picture, a little younger than she is now, actually, a lot younger. Perhaps 15 or 16, and there, she was next to Zack at a party.
And then a thought hit me. What if there had been more faces here, faces that I was familiar with, but I wasn’t looking for. Maybe this was the clue, the missing piece that bound everything together?
I looked into the box, finding another album there which contained nothing but family photos, I opted to look through that one again. This time, I saw it. I saw everything that was missing in this deranged puzzle.
Zack didn’t have kids of his own, instead, opting to adopt a child, who’s mother lost custody after she was deemed to be an unfit guardian. She was an addict and ended up in Zack’s rehab. Dina, Lem and Jack, the four dead addicts who had bits of their skin torn off weren’t a random group of junkies that got together and just happened to meet an unfortunate fate, they went to the rehab as well.
And not only that, they had been friends with Zack all through high school. They didn’t have any children of their own.
I searched up the name Elizabeth Grimes, one of the first children to go missing. I somehow was certain that I was now on the right track, that I had finally pulled onto the right string that would put everything in place.
The six children, Elizabeth, Michael, Marion, Jade, Chris and Don, their parents, all with the exception of one Marqus Piper, either their father or their mother, in Elizabeth’s case, both of them, were amongst Zack’s friends in high school. Their parents weren’t random classmates, not just colleagues, from the pictures I saw, they were all definitely friends, and close friends at that.
I took the album with me when I left, carefully making my way down and then across the hall, where Anna was, still as ever.
I went down the stairs, and rushed to my car. Only when I gripped the steering and felt familiarity of it, I felt somewhat lighter. It was as if I was no longer in the presence of some great evil that had taken that house.
Then, another thought hit me. Torri Reid. She was the only one in the group still unharmed. She hadn’t been killed, or she didn’t have a child. Perhaps she was somehow involved? No…couldn’t be… she was a junkie.
What about Greta? Why did she go missing? And Dan? Were these incidents unrelated? No, this was too much of a coincidence.
And Marqus, how did he fit in all this? Was it because he was a student at Dan’s school? Maybe. Or, maybe it’s nothing related. No, of course it was related… his head was discovered only because of Dan.
I slammed my fist into the wheel letting out my frustration. Everything was so close to coming together, and yet, there was just one little piece that was missing. The final piece that somehow bound my son Dan, into this. And the “skinned witch” or whatever that was.
Torri Reid… there was something about her… something that could bring it all together. Afterall, she was the only survivor, I assumed, to this mess. Torri and Ellen used to be friends… maybe I could talk to Ellen instead.
Then I paused for a moment. The thought sank in. Ellen… Ellen had a child…. She was pregnant.
No…
What if Ellen, not Torri, Ellen, was the last piece.
My eyes widened in fear and I fished out my phone once again, dialling up my daughter’s phone. Every second it went unanswered, I felt my heart skip a beat.
I didn’t wait, I drove out of there as fast as I could, and to Ellen’s house.
Snow began to fall once again, piling up in layers on the windows of my car. All the while, I kept on calling her number.
I’m coming Elle…please be safe… I mumbled over and over, almost like a chant. I was getting anxious every second I wasn’t with her.
Grotesque images began to take over my thoughts, fuelled by the horrible things I had witnessed back at the Levitt’s place, and the ringing of the phone was the only thing keeping me from getting lost in my waking nightmare.
He’s been singing, and dancing to the songs of the skin witch. The phone continued to ring, and then beep, unanswered. I dialled again, too stubborn to let fate have its way. Something awful was happening to this town, and judging by whatever had happened the past year, I knew that my daughter was probably a part of this fucked up puppet show.
The weather was not normal, and even though it had been a while since I had accepted that, I still couldn’t bring myself to be surprised. Like I said, I was in a nightmare, and now, I felt as if nothing could surprise me anymore. The world as I had ever known was a lie, and the curtains of its stage had begun to fall apart, revealing a much more malicious truth; one that was an ugly truth that we hadn’t come to accept yet.
The phone beeped again, unanswered and I put it to my ear, my eyes still focused on the road ahead.
I bit my lip in anticipation as the ringing began again.
“Hello?” I asked as I heard someone answer. “Elle? Are you safe?” I asked frantically, anticipating an abrupt reply, which never came.
My patience was wearing thin, I didn’t wait for her to speak, and I went on to ramble, “Elle? It’s dad? Are you there?”
There was the sound of heavy breathing from the other end. Someone was there.
“Elle?” I asked again, louder. “If you’re there just please…PLEASE! Say something!”
The heavy breathing continued and I took a moment, anticipating a word from the other side at any moment now. I anticipated the slow heavy breathing from the other side to break its silence at any moment now, counting down every exhale and every inhale until a word was spoken. In my mind, I constantly told myself with every inhale I heard that now, anytime now…speak up Elle…
Another sharp inhale, followed by nothing. This time I knew that she would finally break her silence, that something would finally be said.
I felt a sharp touch of light on the right of my face. I turned to face its direction, my mind still lost on the heavy breathing and the unsettling silence from the other side when I was blinded by the high beams of the car charging directly at me. I dropped the phone in shock as the car slid off road and down the side on the ice. My head spun and darkness began to take over my mind, pulling me down towards unconsciousness, but that wasn’t to happen.
I felt my ears sing as I sat, still strapped to the car. Blood dripped down my face, my body spiking with adrenaline. I knew I was hurt; I knew that I was bleeding but I couldn’t tell where. I was blinded by the blood, and the dark. I felt dizzy and I felt my chest pound. I felt damp, with sweat or blood, I couldn’t tell.
I tried to wriggle out of the seat, but a sharp pain jolted up my left shoulder every time I moved. I coughed, spitting blood up and felt my head go heavier.
With my fingers I fumbled around, pushing them into whatever surface they could feel in an attempt to get myself out of the car, which I was afraid would start to burn up at any moment.
The car door opened somehow, my ears still ringing and I saw someone reach in, and click open the belt, leaving me free to heave myself sideways and out of the car.
I needed to get away from this person, whoever this was, they carried my death. I could feel it, my intuition was clear as day.
The snow slowly layered onto me, burying little flakes into my hair. I wanted to scream, but I didn’t have the strength for it. I felt tears well up and make their way down my cheeks as I crawled onto the ice. The pain was hellish, and for a moment I wondered if I actually deserved all this. Maybe a painful death like this is what I get for not being a father to my children, to my son, Dan. I was too hard on him, and somewhere, I shifted all the burden I carried of Sharon’s death to him. I had given him pain, pain he didn’t deserve on top of what he gave himself. I had been cruel, and this was my punishment. This is what fate had for me.
With the final strength I had left in me, I rolled over and faced up, my back pressed into the cold terrain below. The last thing I would ever see was the face of my killer. I had to see his face before I die.
The man walked up to me; the car burst into flames behind him. He didn’t flinch. The lights behind him obscured his features, revealing only his silhouette. It was definitely a man.
His hands were wrapped around a crowbar. I shuddered at the idea of being beaten to death with that thing, but I spat blood, and exhaled, embracing my death. I would show him no fear. If he had a craving for watching me suffer, I shall disappoint him.
He stopped. The ringing in my ears faded away, and he fished into the pocket of his coat. His phone rang again, and I saw him press in onto his ear before answering it.
“Yes?” I heard him say. His manner of speaking felt too proper, almost familiar. His voice was somewhat regal, and his tone was calm and very melodious, almost as if he practiced speaking these words over and over again.
A stillness came over the man, and I knew that feeling that was now in the air. I was familiar with it. Disappointment.
“Yeah.” He said into the phone. “Fuck…”
He walked up to me, crowbar still in hand. I didn’t know if the call he just got was supposed to be better for me or something worse, all I could do was wait and see.
The man lowered himself, his knees bent and the crowbar now held in both his hands. He had greying hair, an older man than me, his face was wrinkled and aged. But his most peculiar feature was his smile. I would never expect that the person who would kill me would ever have a smile like that. It wasn’t something grotesque or evil, nothing malicious, but gentle, and sympathetic. Almost comforting in my last moment.
“Well Mr. Vale… seems though we have to make do with you.” He said, his brows twisted and his face turned into a frown.
“Kill me…” I said in a low groan, “Kill me and be done with it…”
He stood up, and slung the crowbar over his shoulder, “For now, you live.”
He tossed the crowbar and walked up behind me. He placed his hands behind me, under my shoulders and pulled me up, onto my feet. I cried out in pain; my shoulder felt like it was still tearing apart. I tried my best to resist but I couldn’t. Most of my body had started to go limp. He was too strong for the age he looked. He dragged me, my feet limp and leaving bloody trails in the snow.
I counted to three in my mind, and then pushed myself forward, out of the man’s grip and onto the ground, falling and putting almost all of my weight on my injured shoulder and the world went dark.
I vaguely remembered passing in and out of consciousness. My face was pressed against the window of car, I remembered streaks of light passing by, fading into darkness and then back into my sight. Eventually, I let go and hands of darkness pulled me down into a blissful oblivion that was unconsciousness.
I don’t know how many hours passed by, but I did eventually wake up.
The room was dimly lit. That, and it was cold, painfully cold. I tried to move but my limbs felt weak. I was in pain. I wasn’t expecting to wake up again, I was convinced that I would die.
I moved, feeling the cold concrete under my skin. I was naked. I knew now why it felt so cold in here.
How was I not dead yet?
My hands were bound behind my back with a metal chain, cold against my skin. At the time I felt nothing but an overwhelming thirst. I needed water.
“W…” I tried to say, but my throat was as weak as the rest of my body. “W…”
I blinked again, looking directly ahead of me. There was something placed on the middle of the room, illuminated by a dangling light bulb, casting disturbing shadows all around the room, and on the red door behind it. Around it, were candles, many candles, arranged in careful circular patterns. The light they gave off was almost negligible.
One look at it made my skin crawl, and I curled up back in fear, the abrupt movement sending jolts of pain shooting up my shoulder and my leg.
It was a skeleton.
I coughed, and spat blood onto the floor, averting my eyes from the sight. Was this going to be my fate? Was I to be skinned alive?
The door opened and in stepped a man. The dangling light illuminated only one half of him at a time. And when the light swung again, I finally could see the rest of him. He had only one half of his face, the rest was skinned away. I was right. This was him. There was nothing familiar about him, but from all that I had put together, I had some idea of who he was.
“Dan?” I asked. “Dan!”
The man looked down at me and grunted, walking up behind me and fumbling with my chains.
“Answer me!” I yelled.
The man made no reply.
Maybe this wasn’t him. Maybe this wasn’t Dan. I couldn’t tell anymore. I don’t think I could even tell who I was at this point.
He escorted me out of the room, up the stairs and onto the living room of the house, a house I was very familiar with.
There, in the middle of the room of that cursed house, the house where I lost my wife, was a chair. Two children, from what I could tell they were Elizabeth Grimes and Jade Barker, two of the missing children. They coated the wooden chair with bits of a soft, lumpy material, which I very well knew was flesh.
Blood dripped down from it, circling and forming puddles under the legs of the chairs.
I wanted to close my eyes, shield myself from this disturbing sight, but I had to know. I really had to know.
The older man appeared, my captor. He stepped forward. His hair was coated red with blood. The man with the half face stood still, holding my chains as if I was some kind of an animal.
He looked down at me, his face contorted into a grave expression. The man was tense, I could even sense a hint of fear.
“Where’s your daughter?” He asked, his face conveyed a million things, and now it conveyed hints of panic.
I smiled. I feared for a while that they had my daughter here as well; I was glad to know I was wrong.
“You have to tell us where she is… you have to…” She’s with the skinned witch “Please, if not, the great winter will return once again and everything you have ever known will die.” She’s with the skinned witch.
My thoughts kept on repeating the same words over and over again. I felt a chill go up my spine, and the last thing I saw was the older man’s eyes widen as he hurried towards me, while my body went limp and my vision white.
I woke up in snow. The world around me was locked in a raging snowstorm. I was still naked, yet, I didn’t feel the cold anymore.
I walked in the snow, guided only by a strange intuition. This… this was a dream, and yet, it was much more vivid, much richer than a dream could ever be.
My body felt intact. I wasn’t injured anymore, my shoulder felt fine, my knees felt fine. I felt no fear, no anger, no sorrow, I felt nothing, I was nothing.
The walk in the snow eventually got me to a path, marked with smeared blood and bits of flesh. I felt indifferent to it and kept going.
Ahead in the snow, I saw something. A puddle.
Slowly, I made my way to it. Every part of my body telling me to move forward. The snow told me to move forward. Even the wind whispered in my ear to keep going, and I did.
The puddle was dark, and red, full of warm blood, steaming in the cold winter world.
I knew I had to look, and I did, I looked. My own face looked back at me, along with Greta’s and Ellen’s. They were both here, right here in this winter world. Whatever had brought them in here had brought me along as well.
I turned back, expecting to see my daughter and my sister around. They weren’t. I was alone in here.
“Look closer.” I heard the wind whisper. “Look closer.”
I looked closer, not knowing exactly what I was to look for. I placed my hand into the puddle, expecting its warmth to soothe me. Rather, I felt nothing, just as I didn’t feel the cold of this land. What I felt was a hand in there. I grabbed onto it and it grabbed on to me, and I pulled it out, dragging along with itself a mass. A frail, old and wrinkled mass of a woman, a very old woman. Like the one I saw back when I was at Ellen’s place.
I felt my heart pound, the woman placed her hand on mine. She had four fingers.
She placed her hand on my chest, and as my heart beat slowly within, I could feel very word she said.
“Stan…it’s been so long….”
“Sharon?”
The old woman nodded.
“Wait…” I said, sensing movement. “No…” The dream began to fade from me and I felt as if I was falling through cosmic heights. I felt my consciousness fade between the waking world and… whatever this was.
The smell of gasoline was the first thing I sensed. It crept up my nostrils and for a moment I thought that I was doused in it.
Gunshots rang out around me and I woke up to find myself on the floor, my mouth gaped open and a puddle of my own drool was formed around my face.
The old man lay dead next to me. A bullet hole had been opened up in the middle of his face, between his nose and his cheek.
The half-faced man was nowhere to be seen, and neither the children. I heard heavy footsteps behind me and a hand pulled my up abruptly to my feet. My chains rattled behind me.
A coat wrapped around me, a warm dark coat.
I turned back to look.
“Dan?” There was no mistaking this. I felt the familiarity of him, of his touch. He pushed me behind himself, throwing a lit match at the chair, setting it on fire.
“Dad…” I heard him say, “We need to go.” As he raised his gun and fired at the door frame besides him.
We went out in the cold and I almost fell on the ice, but he caught me before I could. I felt his arm touch my shoulder and the pain shot back up, this time, I fought to keep myself up, and running along with him.
He sat me down in the passenger seat of a car, and began to abruptly drive away.
I watched the house diminish in size as he drove back, the flames took over it, consuming it from inside and out. It burnt down, along with all the manner of evil I had witnessed within it.
As we drove away, I realised that I had more questions now that I had answers, but now, what I needed now was some rest, and hopefully I would find it in a long, dreamless sleep.
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2020.11.25 10:18 iamgodandashamed White naked moms

I DRINK A LOT
I was born in 1968

At first it may be because of a failed relationship with a neighbour because she hooked
up with my brother. On that what sort of person does that, seriously. I wasn't ready for
that. I have decided not to swear on here. I will also not give away names or businesses.
They could possibly work it out but I won't name anyone. I just want to tell my story.
Later it became more of I just want to forget. And sleep. I can't kill myself or hurt
myself.

Some more reasons are that I was bullied throughout my life. My stepfather abused me. My
real dad was an alcoholic. My mother was controlling from my 20's. When I met the
neighbour I was 21. My Mother kicked both my brother and I out if we didn't stop seeing
the neighbour. But then again the neighbour was a waste of space. Around the late 2000's
my mum actually wrote me a letter to say stop seeing a mutual friend.

Some local kids decided to throw condoms with water inside them because I was friends
with a gay guy. I knew he was gay. So what. But local kids thought it was wrong. They
were homophobic. I could really get them into trouble now with that. But why bother. I
really just drink so I will die soon hopefully. I have lost all hope for humanity.
They threw them at my car.

Anyways, after my abuse I still didn't work out my sexuality until probably 1994/1995.
I am not sure.

My father was an alcoholic and lost the family business early on in my life. My mum and
dad separated when I was 5. I remember little about my early childhood. Mainly things at
school. One home incident really stuck out early. I have a scar above my eye because a
steel ladder hit it. 5 stitches.

I am pretty sure my dad use to abuse my mum and gave us all the belt at one point. My
oldest brother acted out a lot and left when he was 16 I think.

After my parents separated I would visit my mum on weekends and holidays and see my
stepfather and his kids. Then in 1975 my mum and stepfather moved to another state.
Starting in December, 1978, I visited my mum and stepfather in the holidays staying
about 5 weeks. This happened in 1978,79,80,81. In June 1982 my dad had the accident and
I stayed with my mum for about 3 months.

Another incident was a German Shepard ( named that way at the time) attacked me when I
was walking home and I got some bad scratches and a lifetime fear of dogs. Found out
later the dog attacked someone else and was shot dead.

I am one of three brothers. The oldest is now dead from a heart attack but was an
alcoholic. Around April he started drinking heavily and was told not to drink again.
The second oldest now has cancer but was born with brain damage. He was the
brother that the neighbour dumped me for him. ( again yea who does that?) Me. I am an
alcoholic and had been abused, bullied, cheated on, lost a son to a girl who cheated on
me. Yea so life is great hey.

I worked out my sexuality in 1994? Maybe. Well in 2000 I moved to a big city and started
driving a taxi. I left a winery because the lead hand wouldn't stop pushing his ideas on
me. One of my last conversations to him was that I would kill him and bury him. I think
I got the point across.

In 1978, I had a weird conversation with my stepsister. She asked me how I masturbated.
I didn't at that point. 2 years later after my mum and stepfather met another couple,
some of my abuse started. Yes it was sexual. I can't say I was forced. I wanted to do
it. I know that doesn't make it right. Its just what happened. With one of the sons of
the other family some things happened. We visited a nudist camp and nudist beach. The
other family had 6 children. They were a blended family. The oldest was about 16. The 2
stepsisters were a year older then me. The 2 stepbrother's were my age. There was a
younger girl. About 3 years younger. In 1982 I had extra relations with the other
brother and both stepsisters. We were all about 14 and 15 when this happened.

Actually in 1982, my father had a bad accident. He was going to buy a bottle of sherry
from a pub. Apparently he said he did a u-turn and hit a tree.
Actually he hit the tree at speed. He claimed someone ran him off the road.
He hit that tree with such force that the car, a ht panel van, had a rounded dent in the
front that it was amazing he was still alive. He had broken ribs, broken legs, and
troubles with eating and other things. He couldn't walk properly afterwards. When I saw
him in hospital I fainted. It was horrific. So I went to live with my mom. When he
recovered I went back to him. He continued to drink. We moved from one city to a town
then to a beach town. At this point I was experimenting with wearing women's clothes.
And in the beach town I continued with meeting men.

In 1984 my father died. He couldn't eat properly. And still drank. I started stealing
things from 1982 and ended up spending 3 months in a detention centre in 1983 ( I think)
then had probation until age 18. When I left the centre I again run away but my children
services officer found me. Anyways. I stopped acting out and lost my father.

In 1981, I was in a school in grade 8 in a high school that I knew nearly everyone in
the school. 1982 year 9 I did it then had to continue year 9 in another school where I
was bullied. 1983 I had to repeat year 9 but when I was sentenced to 3 months prison
after stealing bicycles, a boat and tried to steel a car and succeeded in stealing my
dad's car and drove to a big city, my dad took me to the police. In the police interviews
they first tried to pin a lot of stuff on me and i played along until i got sick of the
righteous cop who thought i was some sort of crime wave. I wanted to leave school. One
of the best things I made friends with the strongest guy in that place. Funny thing I
remember when a yacht won for a small country. And a song about still standing. I made
a coffee table too.

After my father's funeral me and the second oldest brother returned to my mother's and
stepfather's place. A caravan with all of my toys and coffee table, my brother's models
and telescopes and clothes was stolen as well as school photos. The caravan was recovered
but nothing else. Who steals photos and toys?

2 incidents that happened about 8 years apart in 2 different states really affected me
badly. The day after my birthday in 1986 I picked up my car from the pub, saw some
friends, then drove home when I got to my turn I saw some police cars and an ambulance
and a car that looked like it was sideswiped. Turns out the driver who was killed was a
local popular girl and was pushing her car after running out of fuel. The drunk driver
lost his licence and not much else. I reckon he should have been locked up for murder.
Another 8 years or so in another state a local kid hopped into his classic car and headed
into town but a big 4wd driven by another drunk driver was headed towards him and
collided and killed him. The drunk driver got a slap on the hand. He, too should have
been put in jail for murder. 2 more wastes of spaces.

I want to tell my story to everyone for free. I don't want money. I am a unemployed carer
for my brother who has cancer. If anyone wants to donate, donate to a worthy cause of
your choosing.

In year 7 the teacher's kid was in his class and because of that I got the cane for
several times. Of course I would like to find that kid now and whip him but he is another
waste of space.

The principal was also a waste of space and at one time kept us all on the parade ground
where someone fainted from the heat. À girl at the school who I liked lied that she
liked me but was joking. I did see her again in 1989 maybe. The third bf of the
neighbour punched me because I started stalking her, oh yes I did stalk her but again
who the hell hooks up with my brother after dumping me.

That couple later was arrested for drugs and later left the area. A local drunk who
abused me for the following and stalking ended up getting run over and died. I thought
at least one waste of space is now dead.

A stupid idiot died. Good.

There were some great experiences from my childhood. Like a cat that was blind that I
called pinky. She was a white albino cat. She was probably blind.
She was the greatest pet I ever had. She had a litter in my dad's doctor's case. She
once followed me all the way to the local shop ( about 4 kms) and back but I had to
carry her the last few hundred yards. But as all great things it ended with tragedy. I
came home from school and couldn't find her. My dad said he found her after being
attacked by dogs, her back broken he had to put her out of her misery. I have never
since had a pet like her. I don't know what happened to the dogs, but another
reason I hate dogs.

Put it this way. If I had a gun and a dog walked up to me I would pull the trigger.

On my stepfather. Yes he abused me and another kid. His reputation could be ruined by
this. His paintings are hanging in a council office and a park is named after him. If
anyone thinks they should be changed then I will get that done. If not I will leave it.
My stepfather passed away in 2005 from a heart attack because he still smoked.

My mother was controlling. I think in the early 2000's I told my mum and stepfather
about a girl I was interested in. That didn't work out. I never told them any other
relationship again. I think I picked younger girls because I missed out on girls from
21 to 33. I met many girls from 2001 to 2019. Most were younger. Only one was older.
But they were always of legal age. I could never be an abuser. And I couldn't be with
a married woman either.

Some of the first girls were Aussie, but I soon moved to Asian ladies, even marrying a
Vietnamese girl so she could stay in Australia. It failed though cause she was too busy
making money as a hooker. She claimed she was a stripper but she would bring guys back
to the house. In 2010 I changed to mostly African girls. My last lady friend was
Hispanic.

A "gf" in 2017 to 2018 who I had a baby with who was still born because of her not
telling me that her water had broken. She also cheated on me. I don't know when it
started. Soon after leaving a job where I was bullied and treated like rubbish a guy
came to the house and she hoped I wasn't home. After some distinctive noises I did
leave. She wanted to have a second baby but after finding out she cheated I didn't want
to have another kid with her. Soon after we left the house and I went back to living in
my car.

Living in my car. Pretty sure I did this from December 2009. Anytime I had work in big
city. At one point I joined a gym so I could shower. Other times I went to swimming
pools. Later I found a truck service station that wouldn't mind who used the showers
as long as you bought something.  Actually some great meals and people at the
place. I couldn't really afford it but at least I wasn't paying rent.

Yes I am an alcoholic. I won't stop. I want to die. I am ashamed. If anyone wants to
stop me guess you will have to lock me up. In the world we have a megalomaniac who
wants to rule the world. We have minorities who are continually dying in custody. If
even one person doesn't do anything then nothing changes.

Met a lovely person in 2011. Things ended in 2012 when I left a Job to be with her. Job
later folded. Owners were another waste of space. But I loved this person. I know it
wouldn't have worked though. I was too old. If I had met her in, oh that wouldn't work
out. Let's just say if I was 20 years younger it would have been better.

I can only think of one woman who was my perfect match but that didn't work out. Or if
we were born in different times.

Pretty sure that I will never find true love or another job.

Thanks to the federal government for forgetting unemployed people over 35. Thanks
for one state government for blaming another government for closing state boarders
then recording more infections. And thanks to a waste of space.

Pandemic. Look at the numbers. One country has the most. This country never took
proper precautions. Their leader is another waste of space.

My new catch phrase. Another waste of space.

Jobs I left. 2 times at the winery. Firstly one couple couldn't work fast enough. I
know I am slow but this couple was retarded. Second time was because of that leading
hand. Driving taxis I just moved depots when I moved houses. In 2002 I worked for a guy
to deliver junk mail. He was another waste of space. I lived with him and his gf ( being
a friend of mine) I woke up one night to his swearing, actually turning out to be a
reminder to my dad.

I worked for a depot in 2008-09, because the mechanic thought it was funny to trap me
in the window. Guess what another waste of space.

I worked for a depot where the owner was a waste of space.

A dealership I worked for where I was bullied and that. Well everyone there was a waste
of space.

Oh yea bonus material. A girl and a cop tried to frame me for hitting her car. She
actually reversed into me. Her and parents ran a shop with adult videos and drugs. The
cop was involved. Anyways later on I heard he tried to pick up another girl and got his
brains blown out.

In that place before we moved I could get anything I wanted. For instance I could buy
a gun.

So should I keep drinking.

I also ran a few businesses of my own. And even one on an app. Again probably making
less then $10 an hour. More wastes of spaces.

Talk about slave labour. Even in this country they still want people to pick fruit
and be paid for weight. Again another waste of space.

From October 2018, after I left that house I would work up to 8 days then drive up to
the little country town and buy and cook dinner for my brother. Sometime in September
2019 I noticed my brother had a lump on his neck. He said he had it for awhile. I got
him to see a doctor and when he did she referred him to a ct scan. Then he referred to
an oncologist. He was diagnosed with incurable cancer.

Mum passed away in 2013 from cancer.

I moved all my stuff up to the house to care for my brother at the end of September.
Cook and shop and stuff. Drive him to his appointments. We have visited another town
which is 100kms away 26 times. My brother has had all of his treatments and all is good
for now.

I will no longer risk my brothers life now. I won't be meeting anyone for years.

Now to this year. I have almost paid off a big debt. Started in 1994/1995 with a
bankcard. Up to $13000. Paid it off in 2012 after my ute got written off. But then
made it again after the move to be with that girl. This year I also got the remainder
of me super. ( a stupid idea. Why not have your money now). Anyways bought some gadgets,
paid off debt and may have a road bike end of this year.

My body isn't too good. I am overweight and have high blood pressure. I had also
started smoking when I was 15 then gave up when I was 23. So at a later date I may
develop cancer as well. Do I want to know. Part of me does and my doctor has suggested
I find out via an x-ray. Part of me does not. We all die. I have now reached out to
see a psychologist to talk to someone about my mental health and life. But I also want
to tell my life story to my family, some day.

I stopped drinking the other day will now take it one day at a time. I know I have to be
here for my brother. After that I don't know.

Now my sleeping pattern is all over the place. Wake up at midnight after a few hours
sleep. Fall asleep around midday sleep til 8 pm. Then it changes again. Last night fell
asleep around 9pm and woke up at 4am. I hope it is all good now. Was thinking of drinking
again to make my sleep right but didn't.

We did have a memorial for my stillborn son and I named him after my stepfather. I don't
know why but it was the first name that came to mind. He is buried at a cemetery that I
have never visited. As far as I know there is no plaque. I will reach out to the cemetery
to find out if he has one.

I heard some wonderful news on sunday. I am drinking now. I am celebrating. I am an alcoholic.
In 2012 I stopped drinking for a few years. A few weeks ago I stopped drinking for a bit but
started again. I don't care if it kills me. A ducking dunt is still not gone from the usa
He should be removed.

Finally some good news. The ducking dunt didn't get enough votes. Now if he doesn't leave he
can be removed by the secret service. You will be able to guess who he is. I think he is
insane. My country is trying to get the country responsible for the pandemic to face some
sort of charges. That country has told my country to really think about what they are doing.
Probably a good idea not to pick on a very large country in terms of population.

Some things did happen in 1979. with that other family we did visit a nudist beach. In 1980
the other family purchased my stepfather's mothers' house after her passing. Then after
that we would visit the nudist camps. I cant remember much else that happened in 1979. At
one point some time early on i saw both my stepfather and mother naked. Probably was in
1978 now that I think of it the night I saw them was the same night my stepsister asked me
about how I masturbate.

I have found out where my son is buried. I checked some records from a council and found
out where he is and asked the council if he had a plaque. He doesn't so I am visiting the
cemetery soon and will get a plaque for him as soon as I can. He was light skin but still
be a person of colour if he lived, with all of the rascism that is still abundant in my
country. White people just don't know what it is like to be treated differently because
of the colour of your skin.

I had deleted some of these paragraphs but decided to reuse them. I dont want the world
to end. I just want my world to end.

My mum sent me a letter sometime in 1996 about my father having been abusive to her.
That's why she left him. I ran away to a big city for a year.

Going to get a gew more gadgets like a video camera to film my story to put up on
youtube using narrator to tell it. This is my life now. drinking to sleep and trying to
forget my life. I could of course stop drinking but where's the fun in that. I dont want
to live forever. I think the world will end soon. We have many countries that want to
start world war 3. Luckily the reign of a dictator has been ended. But i dont put it
past his stupid chrildren trying the same thing. I think the best solution is to kill
him and his entire family. That would save the world. But then again there is 7.8
billion people on earth. So why not end human life.

Actually I think all of the human races' problems are because of politicians. Lets
get rid of politicans if you want the human race to survive another 1000 years.

We have many websites where people scam other people, troll other people and
bascially treat other people very terribly. Why cant we stop these people. How
about get rid of the internet. It is not working. Many other things throughout
history has killed many people. Cigarettes, Alcohol, Coal, Oil and more that
without the world would be better off. There has been many wars too. Many
terriost actions and gun related crimes. One big country has a right to bear
arms. But they continue to have gun deaths and many other crimes. Get rid of
the guns. GET RID OF THE GUNS.

Remember hearing about a guy who actually shot his dad because his dad use
to beat his mother.

One last thing a stupid country voted in a complete dunt. And now there are
rumours you will vote in his daughter. What is wrong with these people??/?
???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

In 1997 a certain popular person died in a car accident. I was making my
style of picnic tables when I heard. It was a sad day.

About 2005 I was driving to big city to do some job that was supervising
taxi ranks. I would finish at 5 am drive halfway home to the country then
sleep in my car. Wake up and drive home. Sleep a bit more then drive back
to big city.

I have sent an earlier update to my stepfather's kids and a friend. I don't
think I will see them again. I want to actually remove the paintings, the
gravestones and the sign at the park.

Actually I think a certain polictical party in a big country is to blame
because they didn't want a woman in office so they put up a candidate so
fundimentally stupid and he was voted in and now with rising deaths in
the country and now they can't get rid of him.

Tell you what let's get rid of violent games. I like violent movies but
they should be stopped too. A great movie trailer I saw was for Tom &
Jerry. Yes it is violent but it is a cartoon. Why should we watch movies
about killing then not think it in real life.

From 2000 I used a chat program on yahoo until about to 2006. Then
changed to one called tagged. where I met most of the girls. Met a
couple through facebook too.

Loved seeing movies at the drive-in or cinema. Saw a few great movies
up until 1978. The next movie I saw at a cinema was in 1989. Missed out
on a lot of great movies. Though now I have a great collection of dvd's,
CD's, records, tapes and videotapes. And Books.
submitted by iamgodandashamed to lifestories [link] [comments]


2020.11.25 03:58 juyuansophia White naked moms

Will a cat have high blood lipid just like human beens?
Owain was found to have hyperlipidemia during a physical examination
Name: Owain;
Gender: Boy/Sterilized;
Breed: Pastoral Cat;
Age: 3 and a half years old;
Weight: 7.5 kg
First visit
Owain - a domestic cat, who has a good appetite, eats a lot but doesn't like to move, he is rated as obese. The blood test found that the upper layer of the blood sample had obvious milky white oil and obvious hyperlipidemia.
Treatment
Use DAMEL(Bile acids) to control blood lipids, and regular blood tests are performed to check the oil condition of blood samples.

The effect of bile acid on reducing blood lipid can be distinguished by naked eye
Follow-up
After one cycle of treatment, blood glucose was significantly improved, and the supernatant of the blood sample became clear after two cycles, and the effect of lowering blood lipid was obvious.
Discuss
Too high blood lipid causes resistance to blood transport, and the left ventricular volume increases at the end of contraction. It looks like the left ventricular contractility decreases, but it is actually caused by the increase in blood transport resistance. The triglyceride index generally does not exceed 100mg/L. If it exceeds 350mg/dL, the owner should be reminded that the animal may die suddenly at any time. Obesity animal physical examination, pay attention to blood lipid problems, early detection and early treatment.
The latest research and clinical evidence prove that as an endogenous substance, bile acids can increase the activity of thyroid hormones, accelerate fat burning metabolism, protect the liver and regulate blood lipids, reduce cardiovascular stress, and protect cardiovascular health.

https://preview.redd.it/hhbs198r7b161.png?width=1242&format=png&auto=webp&s=2d48973cce80793025cb14eb7c18af9174789d88
submitted by juyuansophia to u/juyuansophia [link] [comments]


2020.11.25 01:31 Red_Negan Monitor Grading and back light bleed

There's a lot of questions daily about if the new monitor they have purchased is a good unit, mostly in black uniformity or backlight bleed. This post is show you how I personally grade if a monitor is good or bad, needs to go back for another unit etc. In the end, your eyes should tell the story of what to do but looking at many post, this doesn't seem to be the case.
Grading:
Unicorn
Grade A
Grade B
Grade C
Unicorn
A term inspired by Super Best Audio Friends formally Changstar to grade Audeze LCD-2 headphones, this can be applied to any piece of technology with a wide production variation. What makes a Unicorn Panel? A panel with no problems, good greys, uniform whites, no BLB, no clouding, perfect pretty much. Issues like IPS glow(unicorn units may have slight glow off angle, this is normal, what you may be seeing is the lower contrast not glow, this enhances glow sometimes) VA panel grey uniformity and OLED 25% grey banding are inherent to these panels but are way less obvious on a great unit, I've seen some which were almost invisible(VA) With IPS glow is does vary, some units are stronger than others, a strong IPS glow with good performance in other areas for me would put a screen into a grade A category. Dead pixels are a seperate entity, more on this in a bit. Out of 100's of screens, I've seen less than a handful of units I'd consider a Unicorn or golden unit, if you're one of those people, keep it, because having the satisfaction of a good panel adds to the experience. A unicorn unit could mean on that day, the factory worker was fresh out of bed, no fatigue, your guess is as good as mine.
Here's a rare picture of my own previous G7 which I consider a Golden unit for BLB
https://scontent-lhr8-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/127164875_826635204767018_4875691341715596787_o.jpg?_nc_cat=111&ccb=2&_nc_sid=8bfeb9&_nc_ohc=orj0Mp3hYsoAX8vJqo7&_nc_ht=scontent-lhr8-1.xx&oh=14a20a0c41fdc3494a5f14da8fbba89c&oe=5FE42A59
Grade A
This refers to a panel with minimal problems, this could mean the unit has great uniformity, minimal backlight interference, inherent issues like glow, or VA grey characterises are there but minimal. There shouldn't be any backlight bleed, screen clouding seen by the naked eye.
Here's another G7 which is an A grade showing black uniformity
https://scontent-lht6-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/127569435_826635138100358_6558928515117673007_o.jpg?_nc_cat=105&ccb=2&_nc_sid=8bfeb9&_nc_ohc=kcN32NDGeTMAX9uc7GK&_nc_ht=scontent-lht6-1.xx&oh=2d37a98e9aa421fd00712050864d8f39&oe=5FE531A0
Grade B
This is what you'll typically unbox, inherent issue will be there, you may have some glow, BLB, inherent traits like grey screen muddiness, maybe some slight uniformity problems in whites. In my experience, if you unbox 10 monitors, 8 will be B grade. Here's some BLB on a B grade unit AW2521HF
https://scontent-lhr8-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/127212843_826635248100347_3243065171590908315_o.jpg?_nc_cat=101&cb=846ca55b-311e05c7&ccb=2&_nc_sid=8bfeb9&_nc_ohc=Ot2BR8olq-EAX_em_pW&_nc_ht=scontent-lhr8-1.xx&oh=3763b800bea48eb88cba6d74e548ce90&oe=5FE48D1F
C grade
If you see a C grade unit, you won't need to post, you'll return it. BLB could make the image un-useable, whites will display multiple shades, greys will look dirty, you'll right away see something is wrong. These units make you wonder how they pass QC. Funny thing, I've never unboxed a C grade unit which had bad black uniformity but here's an example of awful white uniformity recently.
XV273KP
https://scontent-lhr8-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/127471826_826640611433144_5852933573474886053_o.jpg?_nc_cat=107&ccb=2&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_ohc=I5V1rYDbXdYAX-H02LO&_nc_ht=scontent-lhr8-1.xx&oh=1a2391c9ba6e0a167f316cdf8f6d25fa&oe=5FE4A8DE
But most black screens look bad on this sub, how can there be good grade units?
Now when you look on this sub you'll occasionally see this
https://scontent-lhr8-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/127222839_826635164767022_2436509173751039784_o.jpg?_nc_cat=109&ccb=2&_nc_sid=8bfeb9&_nc_ohc=qharcCjZSbIAX8RF7Ia&_nc_ht=scontent-lhr8-1.xx&oh=eb0e3cf0d3de28ea38438bbbf7655df1&oe=5FE33F16
Looks bad right? actually this is a unit I'd consider closer to an A grade. See the cross in the middle, bad uniformity generally has bad blotches between the cross, what you see is mostly a result of 100% brightness and incorrect camera settings. When you crank any LCD to the max and have an overexposed picture, you get this affect making it 10 times worse. You wills see so many pictures saying does this look bad, many will answer saying yes but you need to truly know what you're looking for. When you have an overexposed image, look how far into the screen the light travels; if you see clouding and no obvious black markers for the cross, you potentially have bad screen uniformity or a Grade C panel. It's important when taking a picture of a black screen on an LCD to use your manual or pro settings to set the correct points. You can watch many YouTube videos if you're not comfortable learning by eye yet.
Should I return a B grade unit?
Only you can truly answer that but I'll give you my opinion. If you feel you can live with it, then no, the chances are the next model will be a B and may have further issues like dead pixels if your unit is clear, you'll be kicking yourself; It's called the panel lottery for a reason.
What about dead pixels?
Dead pixels is again, a personal thing. I've been around god knows how man panels and TV's, I work with them, work on them, use them for fun, loads have them. When I look for deads I'm very analytical, I start out splitting the screen into areas then will look for deads up close, at all angles, move on to the next section until I've covered the panel, I then do the same on a black screen; usually these are more obvious but a panel with high IPS glow for example can make it harder. I find deads on most panels, 1 is common, 2 is common, slightly less so, more than 2 is rare on new panels. Dead pixels are not factored into my grading because they generally don't cause problems unless we look for them. If I purchased say, an ant colony of say 3000 ants, would it be reasonable to return it if on died? you could argue I paid for 3000 ants so should get 3000 but when you have this many, isn't at least one dead probable? this is how I see dead pixels, there's thousands think how unlikely it is to have them all working, it's just the nature of displays. I've had some monitors with no dead pixels, it's great, but if a monitor is a Grade A but has 1 or two in a place you don't notice and I returned it and got no dead but a Grade C which truly affects the viewing experience more. In the end, you gotta do you.
submitted by Red_Negan to Monitors [link] [comments]


2020.11.25 01:24 Maddox_Hendrick_Lake White naked moms

I snapped back to reality when I heard one of the girls exclaim, “Gaht fahking damet!” At first I laughed a little bit, but then the most surprising thing happened. Fat Monkey Rudolph repeated after her in a nasally voice, “Gaht fahking damet!”
“Tai!” Káralu shouted with a snap of his fingers.
I suddenly realized that that’s what he had been trying to do earlier—to get it to repeat after him. The girls of course laughed and went about trying to get it to repeat other phrases, some of which it did, others it didn’t. What’s more though, as I watched them all playing with it, the memory of the mime somewhere in the canopy was fresh in my mind after having combed through all the details of how I got here, and it occurred to me that I had probably been hearing one of these things instead of an actual person. But, who cares, right? So Fat Monkey Rudolph could imitate people like a parrot, fine. What about that map? Where were WE on it? I whipped around to pose the question to Káralu, only to see he had shifted and was sitting on half of it, the relevant half with the Pacific Northwestern country on it, and I just about flipped my shit.
“Fuck man! Really?” I snapped.
I didn’t even realize how aggressive I was being as I tried to push him off to salvage it. I pushed him hard enough to knock him on his side, only to see that a large segment of it had been smushed by his ass.
“Motherfucker!” I yelled.
He wasn’t happy with the way I had pushed him, and he sat up and let me know by presumably cussing me out and pushing me back, which only escalated the situation.
“Fuck you, dude!” I shouted as I quickly got to my feet.
He wasn’t going to let me tower over him though, and so he got to his feet and shouted back at me.
“Ne ka? Ne ka gahir?”
“Ne ka gahir?” I imitated him with a whiny voice, “What the fuck does that even mean, you big-eared pussy?”
Why was I being such an overt asswipe? If I had to put my finger on it, I guess I hadn’t really had the chance to express my anger at my circumstance, and right about now seemed like as good an opportunity as any. Up until this point I had been scared out of my mind, humiliated to the point of tears, and then just kind of accepting everything, but the combination of the absurdity of everything I had just put together in my head somehow being real and his having so carelessly sat on the link that had helped me piece it all together drove me over the edge. NONE of this made any fucking sense at all, and yet as far as I could tell it was real which made me really fucking angry, but also… it made me feel kind of helpless. I was 15-and-a-half, and your brain does a lot of processing of the world around you during your childhood. I THOUGHT that by now I had a pretty fair grasp of how some things in the world worked. There’s no such thing as Santa Clause or the Easter Bunny for example, because just the logistics behind getting candy and presents to all the kids that celebrate Christmas and Easter on their respective holidays is impossible, which then requires magic to fill in the gaps… which is to say nothing of their supernatural qualities, like being a sapient rabbit or an old man with a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer. You give up the notion of the existence of magic when you’re pretty young, usually. I didn’t, cuz I believed in both until I was in 4th grade, but other kids knew way earlier, around 2nd grade, cuz their parents had sat down with them and explained it. You also grow up watching various movies or TV Shows that depict supernatural or otherwise fantastic events, like people passing through wormholes in Stargate or Sliders, or all the kooky magic in Charmed (my mom really liked that show) and you have to suspend your disbelief to watch them, cuz obviously all that stuff just isn’t real. And yet, here I was… in America? America with dinosaurs, but dinosaurs so closely related to birds so as to not be immediately distinguishable at a quick glance? America with whatever the fuck that miming thing was? And somehow or other, I had been brought here by people who seemingly only did so to slit my throat on an altar? Like… why me? Why did they need to bring me from my relatively normal life in the United States of America to whoever the fuck this was? What was so special about me that they were willing to go to such trouble? Weren’t there other teenage throats to cut? And if all of this was possible, then what the fuck did I know about anything, right?
“Ne ka gahir!” I yelled again, pushing him one more time.
That was enough for him. He faked me out with a false punch directed toward the right side of my head, which I moved to the left to dodge, then he quickly wrapped his right arm around my neck and pulled me into a headlock before tripping me from behind, and before I knew it, I was on the ground, well… still in a headlock.
“Fuck you!” I said, both my hands on his forearm trying to pull it away from my neck, “Get the fuck off me!”
He jerked me forward, and then I reached up from behind and grabbed myself a handful of his hair, which made him throw me over his side, forcing me to let go. However, right after he so, he let out a loud grunt and then let go of me. I got on top of him as fast as I could and grabbed him by the vest and punched him twice in the face, cussing loudly as I did.
“You stupid… mother… fucker! Fuck you!”
Right about then I felt something heavy crash so hard into my head that I found myself back on the ground and disoriented, with a loud ringing in my right ear. Before I could come to, I felt someone kick me in the stomach as hard as they could with a wooden shoe, which, as I’m sure you can imagine, knocked the wind right out of me. I looked up and saw Ṣemánako standing there with her large basket now presumably full of tubers squatted next to Káralu, who was still on the ground with a bloody nose, with one hand on his lower back, wincing in pain. She reached to touch his arm, but he just smacked her hand way indignantly and then struggled to sit himself back up. They talked for a moment, looking back and forth at me and then each other as they did, like they were trying to decide whether to leave me there in the meadow for my trespass or to bring me with them. Káralu wiped the blood off his nose with his vest and then struggled to stand up cuz of something going on in his lower back, but he refused any help that Ṣemánako offered him and then picked up his bandolier, his water bag, and his rifle and signaled me to get up too. I was feeling stubborn though, and at first didn’t want to go with them, but then my senses came back and I realized I didn’t really have a lot of other choices, so I stood up and got my stuff.
Truth be told, I was actually a little proud of myself for having bloodied him up the way I did. I’d never been in an actual fight before, just wrestling and such with my friends during sleepovers. I didn’t know that I had it in me to do something like that. On second thought though, I had only been able to get on top of him at all cuz he had let go of me, as it seemed he had pulled something in his back when he was jerking me around in a headlock, so… a little humility was in order. Still, I had hit him hard enough to make him bleed, and I had done it right because my knuckles didn’t really hurt. Though, I started to feel like kind of an asshole as we traversed through the forest in search of some more forage with the girls. I had gotten upset and violent with him for what appeared to him at least to be no reason at all. Even if I had my own reasons for being mad, they didn’t have much to do with him, and even if they had they didn’t warrant my behavior. I started to feel really guilty the more we went because, well… I didn’t know how to say I was sorry, neither with my words or how to really express it without giving the wrong impression. Obviously, these people had some different standards of behavior than Americans, and the only way I could think of to express that I was sorry was to bow in some way or other, which might make him think something I wasn’t sure I wanted him thinking. I mean, just the initial skepticism of going with him, his grandpa, his dad and his uncle a couple days ago had nearly gotten my head chopped off, right? So I just sucked it up and hoped that maybe I would have an opportunity to make it up to him later, like, maybe by helping him out with something. I don’t know…
We circled back around through the forest to see if there was anything else decent to take with us and then came back to the creek, where the girls put down their baskets and pulled out some cured meat, nuts, and dried and salted vegetables (almost like chips, but not really) out of their bags for lunch. Everyone was pretty worn out and sweaty, and given that it must have been some time in the afternoon by now, it was about that time. The girls sat down by the rough, sandy shore, but I decided to find myself a spot a little more secluded just downstream on a large rock. Despite my previous fit, Káralu offered me some of the food before taking his clothes off and taking a dip in the creek, making sure to submerge himself all the way for maximum cooling. I sat there on a very large, decently flat rock on the side and ate while the girls undid the braids in their hair and dunked their heads. The cured meat was really spicy, but the dried, sliced vegetables were pretty good. They tasted sort of like a mixture between a corn chip and dried bananas, if that makes any sense. The nuts… I couldn’t really place the taste. They were good for sure, just… I don’t know. Sort of like macadamia? Anyways, Káralu was out of the water about as quickly as he had gotten in and was telling me I should try it, but I didn’t want to. I felt like a jerk for what I had done earlier, and was kind of feeling like cutting off my nose to spite my face. He shrugged and sat down right in front of me, all naked and glistening in the sun, but he ended up laying down on his back because his lower back was still hurting and it was uncomfortable to sit up.
I tried to keep my eyes off of him and focus on my circumstance, but it was kind of difficult. I had never really been attracted to anyone who wasn’t White before, except maybe Victor Chávez, but Káralu was exceptionally handsome and exotic-looking. Maybe the rest of his group didn’t exactly look Indian to me, but he didn’t just look Indian, he looked like Indian royalty, and I mean all of him. He was skinny sure, but lean, not soft, and there was no manscaping going on anywhere, which I had always found to be something of a turn off when other guys did it. I found my thoughts wandering to what his intentions were, like, why had he spoken up for me and saved me from his grandpa when his grandpa tried to kill me, and why the hell wasn’t he married? I mean, just about all of the ‘guys’ were good-looking in their own right, but he was by far the best of them in my book. Most every boy upwards of 14 was already married and had a kid on the way. Why not him? Part of me got to thinking that maybe he was smitten with me, but I dismissed the idea out of hand because it seemed pompous, if not a little bit stupid. How could he have decided he was so smitten with me within those first few minutes as to be willing to get between his grandpa and I, and then go to bat for me in front of the rest of his group, or tribe or whatever? And besides, wasn’t homosexuality something you got burned at the stake for back in the day anyways? Maybe in specific times and places back home on Earth, or Earth proper rather, but here maybe it was completely acceptable! I thought back to my conversation with Derek about the way I had behaved with Matt, and his words kept repeating in my head. Sometimes, playin' hard to get gets someone else got.
He was absolutely right, and given how I had missed my opportunity with Matt and the Germans back in Salt Lake, I figured that I might as well give this a go. What’s the worst that could happen? I get hung, or burned, or drawn and quartered? That was certainly a possibility, but the biggest reason I was afraid of dying at the time was cuz I didn’t know what was on the other side of it, and I was already on the other side of something right now, so… maybe death was just another opportunity, right? I stood up, and started getting undressed. Once I was naked, Káralu sat up and did that whole finger-snapping tai! thing again, and I gingerly stepped into the water for my turn to freeze my balls off. Trouble was, I had been sitting down long enough to cool down quite a bit already, so submerging myself in almost freezing water probably didn’t have the same effect on me as it had for him about ten minutes earlier, so I scrambled out of the water and back up onto the rock with him as fast as I could. He was laughing and pointing, and I noticed that my dick had shrank to such a degree as to make my foreskin look like the end of an elephant’s nose. I quickly tugged on myself to bring things back to a presentable size and sat down next to him, and he offered me some more of the meat before patting on the rock and nudging me with his hand to lie down, as if to tell me that I’d be able to heat up more efficiently that way, since the rock was pretty hot. It felt a little weird to lay on my back though—something about being on full display I guess, so I decided to lay on my stomach and use my arms as a pillow, and he laid down next to me.
At this point, I could feel the tension building, and while I was trying to present myself as relaxed, my heart was starting to race. Here we both were, completely exposed and lying right next to each other. There was literally nothing between us, and all I could do was wonder if he was feeling the same way. I would periodically open my eyes to catch a discrete peak at him, but it wasn’t long before he caught me and started laughing, which made me laugh too.
“Ganjir, ganjir.” He said, doing a pushup to sit back up on his knees.
I had heard that word before as well, and from what I was able to put together, it meant something like hold on or wait a second. I started to roll over, thinking we were going to get up, but he just said ċele, ċele, ċele and signaled me to lay back down, so I did. Then he put his hands on my eyes and closed them, and the butterflies in my stomach started flittering about in full force. What was he up to? Was this it? Were we going to do… it? Was I finally going to lose my virginity right here and now? What about the girls? They were right over there! I mean, they couldn’t see us from where they were, but what if Ṣemánako or one of the others decided to come over to let us know that break time was over and we needed to move again? What if she saw us… in the act? Of course, that’s not what was happening at all. Yes, Káralu did get on top of me, but no, things didn’t go there. Not completely anyways. He apparently wanted to rub my back, which at first I resisted. He had thrown his back out earlier in our little tussle, and I felt guilty, but I somehow or other understood him when he told me that it would be my turn to rub his back shortly. I laid back down, closed my eyes, and let him do his business. Truth be told, my friends and I gave each other massages all the time, but we always kept our boxers on in the process, even if there was some massaging below the waistband. One time we all discussed paying for a professional massage with the money we had all earned from our job at Dairy Queen, but I pussied out once I realized the massage therapist was a dude, cuz I was under the impression that you had to be naked for massages and I was afraid of the Amish potentially raising the barn (if you know what I mean), and I wasn’t out yet at the time. I had gotten really good of course at controlling myself in the process of giving and receiving massages from my friends, but what was happening now was something I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to manage. On one hand, I wanted this to go somewhere, but on the other, I was having second thoughts about initiating it. Cuz, what if two guys were supposed to be able to give each other massages while naked by the creek, without any sexual undertones? While I had just decided minutes ago that I wasn’t afraid of dying per se if these people considered homosexuality to be a crime, I was afraid of the pain involved. I had recently seen the movie The Stoning of Soraya M., which had a particularly graphic representation of a woman being stoned to death. I also started to think about Giovanni di Giovanni, a kid my age in 14th century Florence that I had read about awhile back who’d been publicly castrated and sodomized with a red hot iron. So, maybe a little caution was in order.
Káralu didn’t seem to agree, though. Not that he could read my mind of course, but he was very thorough with his massage. He started with my shoulders and then moved down my back and straight to both of my ass cheeks, but he made sure to spread my legs a little bit so he could handle each one as an extension of the leg to which it was connected. To be honest, he wasn’t bad. He used his thumbs and his fists a lot, and he was just the right combination of rough and soft. Then, he signaled me to roll over. At first, I thought this meant that we were done, and that it was his turn, but he pushed me back down softly and proceeded to massage my chest. Now, maintaining a flaccid dick was one thing while lying on my stomach, but I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to do it now, especially because his junk was brushing over mine here and there as he did his thing. Furthermore, I had never had the front of my body massaged before, so I started to feel pretty ticklish when he got to my lats. It wasn’t long before I couldn’t maintain composure anymore, and I just started to laugh and squirm until he let me get up and decided to lay down himself.
I of course found it a lot easier to not give a standing ovation while acting as the masseuse, but it was still kind of difficult. Like I said, I’d massaged my friends, but this was a lot more intimate, for obvious reasons. I gave massages a little differently than most people though, cuz I liked to start with the lower back—where most of the problems typically start—and work my way up, so that’s what I did, which was also appropriate because that’s where he had hurt himself earlier. He winced and moaned a little bit in pain, but after a little bit of working on that spot he eased up and stopped making noise. After working my way up his spine and to his shoulders, I started to work on his neck, which was particularly knotted up for some reason. I tried to tell him to sit up so I could work with his neck a little bit easier, but he seemed to think I was telling him that I was done, so he rolled over and sat up, and I… well, felt like an ass. I tried to tell him to lay back down, but he wasn’t having it. He wasn’t upset, though. No, in fact he did something that threw me for the biggest loop I had ever been thrown in my young life—he kissed me.
Not like, full on and open mouth, but definitely on the lips, and not the kind of kiss you give your mom either. Why did that throw me for a loop? I don’t know, really. Maybe cuz he had good reason to think I was a jerk, but probably more cuz I had only ever been kissed for the first time the other day, and I wasn’t used to it. I don’t know. All I know is that my dick shot straight to full attention when he did. He laughed, but nothing came of it. It was time to get moving again, as he pointed over to the girls. Oh my god… the GIRLS! Had they seen what we just did? Holy fuck! I just about shat a green apple, and my mood must have been noticeable on my face, cuz he sat down next to me and put his arm around my neck and rustled my hair and said lal, lal, lal, letting me know that it was ok. Then he got up and started getting dressed, and so did I. For some reason, I got dressed a lot faster than he did, probably because I was embarrassed. But then, right about as I was tying my sash around my waist to keep my very loose pants up, I heard what every teenage boy wants to hear right after he’s been totally blue-balled—screaming.
Yes! Screaming. The girls were screaming, in point of fact. At first I thought they were screaming because they saw us, and my heart started to sink. Maybe we were about to be burned at the stake for kissing? Why hadn’t we gone all the way, if that was the case? If I was going to die for being a sodomite, I might as well have committed sodomy. But no, actually. The screaming was a bit more serious, as in the kind you hear when people are terrified, and it was accompanied by a familiar, bellowing roar, which made my blood begin to rush. Before I even knew it, I had skipped over a couple of rocks and 20 yards of shoreline to where the girls were now scattering like frightened antelope with my rifle in hand, only to see a large, leopard-like animal on top of one of them. It had a ruddy color to its coat, almost like a fox, but despite its shortened, cat-like face and the tabby markings that ran the length of its head and down its chest, it was quite obviously not a cat. In fact, the overall set up of its body very closely resembled the animal I had seen in Utah, what with its enormous forelimbs and its large, hook-like claws on its thumbs. It had this girl wrapped tightly in its powerful arms, the ends of its hooked claws sank deep into her chest and stomach, and its teeth already plunged into her neck, choking the life out of her. The look on her face was one of utter terror. Her veins were bulging as she gasped for air, her eyes seemingly about to pop out of her head, and blood was leaking from her neck and her mouth as she frantically reached for the animal’s eyes. She was trying to gouge them out with her fingers, but it had them tightly shut.
I quickly lifted my rifle to take aim, but before I could pull the hammer back, I noticed Ṣemánako behind it, pulling at its long, fluffy tail with all her might. I hadn’t been shooting in years at this point, and I wasn’t confident that I could fire without hitting one of the two people I was trying to protect. So, for a second I just stood there, too chickenshit to pull the trigger, a million thoughts racing through my head as I took in the sound of the one girl coughing and wheezing for dear life, the low growls the animal was making, and the way Ṣemánako screamed as she heaved at its tail.
Just behind her in the hedges however, I saw something that made matters all the more dire—there was another one. Of course, right? So, were these animals social hunters? How many more could I expect? The other one paced back and forth, almost as if it were waiting its turn. Whatever was going on here didn’t at first glance appear to be a cooperative hunting effort. I quickly pulled the hammer back and lifted the rifle to fire at it so as to minimize the number of large carnivorous animals to deal with, but in my utter panic I shot the trees behind it instead. It was clearly spooked, but it didn’t leave, so I pulled back the hammer and tried again. Right as I shot however, the first one let go of the girl it had in its grasp and whipped around to go for Ṣemánako, and my shot ended up hitting it in the shoulder, causing it to jump backward before turning its attention in my direction. It looked right at me, and it felt like an eternity that our eyes were locked. It had yellow eyes, and blood all over its mouth, and while it growled it showed me a mouth full of teeth that included two bloody canines that had to be five inches long if not more. It started to charge me, and my whole body froze save for my hands, which seemed to be on autopilot as I fired and pulled the hammer back and fired again. I emptied the whole barrel within a few seconds, but out of my six remaining shots only four of them ended up hitting my moving target. I don’t know where all of them ended up, but I know at least one of them hit it in the chest, and before it could jump on me it ended up recoiling mid-air and falling back down on its side before struggling to get to its feet again. I must have tried to fire at least two more times before I realized I was out, at which point I took to using the rifle like a baseball bat and started hitting it with all the strength my 15-year-old body could muster. It let out a spitting hiss, and then barked at me, and it even bit at the butt of the rifle and swiped at my legs with one of its paws, but it ultimately ended up limping off into the creek to get away.
“What, pussy? Fuck you!” I yelled as it slinked off through the water.
My victory was rather short-lived, however. Before I knew it, I was on the ground, my face had been smashed against the rocks in the water and I had heard a loud crack come from my nose. For a moment I couldn’t tell if my eyes were watering because my face was being pressed into the water, but I could taste both the soothing flavor of the creek water and the irony flavor of a LOT of blood. I could also feel a heavy weight pressing down on me, like a giant fluffy blanket stuffed with stones instead of feathers. A long, muscly, furry arm was wrapped around my torso, and I could feel this sharp, jerking feeling raking across my ribs, while a wide paw pressed down on my back, with a similar jerking feeling on my left shoulder blade. My right shoulder felt like it was in a vice, and I could feel my collarbone about to break. As I fought to keep my head above the water, I felt my face brush up against the head of the second animal, which was growling loudly as it fought to keep me where I was. I reached for its eyes, but like its companion, it had them closed. I reached for its ears, but the more I did the more I felt my shoulder and collarbone about to break under the weight of its jaws. I screamed, but that didn’t really seem to matter that much. I could hear it growling, but I could also hear screaming and a sort of cutting sound, and I started to feel some extra weight on top of me that forced my face back down into the water. The water was too shallow for my ears to be submerged though, and so while I didn’t see much of what happened next, I definitely heard it. I felt the animal’s teeth come out of my shoulder and more screaming and cutting. Ṣemánako had jumped on its back and was stabbing it with the knife she had used to cut up the cured meat, and so it was turning around to face her. Before it could however, I heard a loud bang, which was the sound of a gunshot, but also a loud splat, which sounded as if a rifle had been fired at point-blank range into a watermelon. It was so loud that the next four bangs that came afterward sounded increasingly quiet and distant, being replaced by a ringing in my ears.
Eventually I couldn’t hear anything but the ringing, but I could feel the weight had mostly gone, with only my legs being pinned down. Even still, I found the strength to pull them out from under and roll myself over, only to find Káralu relentlessly beating my now mortally wounded attacker with the butt of his rifle, who was now barely moving. He had shot it right through the throat, and its growling was reduced to choked gargling on its own blood as it struggled to make use of what remained of its windpipe. He had shot it a couple of more times in the side and the shoulder as well, so it wasn’t much for a fight.
That should have been the end of it, but it wasn’t. The first one, the one that had gone limping off across the creek after being wounded in the shoulder? Well, it wasn’t done. No, it seemingly came out of nowhere and pounced on Káralu the way the other one had on me, except this time, it was going for his neck. I don’t know what came over me, but despite having potentially just had my collarbone and shoulder crushed, and my nose DEFINITELY broken, I found myself jumping on its back with not so much as the knife that Ṣemánako had. Káralu had somehow or other been able to crouch into the fetal position with his arms firmly over the back of his neck so that it couldn’t sink its teeth in the way it had with that poor girl. So, by the time I found myself on its back, with my forearm wrapped firmly around its neck, it was trying to force one of its paws between his torso and his thighs to pry him apart. It did not like me on its back or with my arm around its neck though, and so it quickly lost interest in Káralu and used both of its forepaws to reach up behind its head and grab mine with all its might while it used its hind paws like a cat would, attempting to scratch my forearm enough for me to loosen my grip so that it would be able to force them between it and its neck and break my chokehold. Ṣemánako, being the beast that she was, went for its chest with her knife, but after a couple of stabs it was able to force us to roll completely over a few times until we were some feet away. It didn’t scratch my face, but it definitely got the back of my head and my neck something decent. It was a miracle really that it didn’t get my carotid or my jugular in the process, because it practically ripped off my left ear. Still, I could feel its heart beating, and its attempts at breathing starting to become less frequent. I didn’t have the best view of its eyes, but I could still see them, and the look in them slowly started to glaze over while its mouth stayed wide open, occasionally making a hideous, raspy attempt at a breath. Each time it did I tightened my grip. Finally, it stopped reaching up for my head, moving down to my shoulders, and then finally letting its forelimbs fall lifelessly to its sides.
The whole process was actually very anticlimactic. Sure, it seemed to be dead, but my adrenaline was still rushing, and I kept looking awkwardly up at Ṣemánako and Káralu, who were alternating between stabbing it in the chest and smashing its ribs with the rifle. We probably went on like that for several more minutes until we were absolutely sure beyond any shadow of a doubt that it was dead, at which point Káralu had to practically force me to let go.
“Mirċya,” He said as he tugged hard on my arm, “Hang lal! Hang lal. Lal, lal.”
He said that repeatedly for awhile before I finally felt safe enough to let it go, but I couldn’t stop looking at it even after I had.
“Holy… fucking… shit…” I panted.
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2020.11.25 01:23 Maddox_Hendrick_Lake The Price of Attrition, Chapter X

“Head,” I said, patting the top of my head, “shoulders, knees, and toes.”
The kids all giggled, but Káralu only smiled.
“Jin,” He started out with his head, “pedandu, perukan, ṣpovoḫṣin.”
“Jin, pedandu, perukan, ṣpovoḫṣin.” I said, repeating the gestures again.
“Lal, lal, lal!” He laughed.
I knew that word. It seemed to mean good, or ok.
“Eyes, ears, mouth, and nose.”
“Peto, peḫaral, eṣṣan, dang.”
“Peto, peḫaral, eṣṣan, dang.” I repeated.
He smiled again. I liked his smile. He was definitely handsome in his own right. The kids giggled some more, and this one little girl who was particularly interested in English repeated after me and then giggled. Her name was Mambi, and she was really, really cute. I guessed she must have been around 4 or 5 years old. She had the cutest little button nose and these big, brown eyes and medium brown hair with caramel skin.
“Trynian.” She said, pointing at me.
“That’s right!” I nodded, “My name is Trynian.”
“My name is Mambi.” She said.
“Yes it is!” I laughed, “You’re Mambi, and that’s Palu, and Jeje, and Nunar, and Ṣaṣol, and Tola, and Narinjaḫi.”
I made sure to point to all of the corresponding kids, and they all smiled as I did, with some of them missing various teeth, since they were all about that age. Specifically, Palu was missing his two front teeth, which of course made me burst out into song.
All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth, see my two front teeth! Gee, if I could only have my two front teeth, then I could wish you ‘Merry Christmas’!
All of the kids laughed, and so did Káralu, but when they realized I was done the kids started to cry out, “Tera, tera, tera!”
I knew that meant more, but I honestly couldn’t remember the rest of that song, so I tried to think of another one. They all liked my singing quite a bit, actually. They had a very, very different style of music, which to me more closely resembled chanting than anything else. It didn’t really matter what song I decided to sing, even if it was something I thought was ridiculous, they loved it. The day I arrived, they had thrown a huge welcoming party for me, after the whole humiliating business of my entry, that is. They didn’t have much in terms of food to give, given that they were pretty poor and it was on such short notice, but there was a lot of music, dancing, and drinking. They would sing together as a group, but occasionally one or the other would stand up and do a solo for the everyone. By the time it was my turn, I’d had enough liquid courage in the form of some kind of fermented cottage-cheese-like mixture to give it a go, and so I did. I was still scared that everyone was gonna turn into demons and I was gonna be tortured, and so I wanted to profess my faith in God, so I sang my favorite LDS hymn, Lean on My Ample Arm, except… I only knew the bass part, since I had sang bass in choir at church.
By now I was on my third day, and I hadn’t had any more creepy-ass fuckin’ dreams, and I was pretty certain that this was reality, and I wasn’t in Hell. So, when the kids said tera, tera, tera, I was willing to oblige. I was still very confused as to just how the fuck I had gotten in my present predicament, and I was desperate to figure out how to get out of it, but for now, I satisfied my home sickness by singing them songs that reminded me of home. The first thing that came to mind here was the song Sixteen Tons, by Tennessee Ernie Ford.
Sooooome people say a man is made outta mud, a poor man’s made outta muscle and blood! Muscle and blood and skin and bones, a mind that’s weak and a back that’s strong! You load sixteen tons, what do you get? Another day older and deeper in debt. Saint Peter don’t you call me cause I can’t go! I owe my soul to the company store!
The kids loved this song, and just like kids anywhere they could probably hear the same thing twenty times in a row without getting tired of it, so I had probably sang it at least that many times, if not fifty. Initially I hadn’t been snapping my fingers to the beat, but given how much the kids liked it, I had started doing that around probably the nineteenth time I had sang it, and now everyone knew to snap when I started.
I was born one mornin’ when the sun didn’t shine! I picked up my shovel and I walked to the mine. I loaded sixteen tons, of number nine coal and the straw-boss said well-uh bless my soul! You load sixteen tons, what do you get? Another day older and deeper in debt. Saint Peter don’t you call me, cause I can’t go! I owe my soul to the company store!
Káralu joined me for the chorus here. His voice wasn’t as deep as mine though, and he didn’t pronounce all the words properly, but he put forth a decent effort. His pronunciation was something more like, “You lo sikshting tums, wha’ ru you gek? Anodder day ora and deeper in dek. Saimpeera donja call me cuz I cang go, I owe my soh to da cahmpony store!
It made me laugh especially cuz of the way he pronounced the word debt. He substituted a K on the end instead of a T, and the E was more between an E and an I, so it kinda sounded like he was saying “another day older and deeper in dick”. As soon as the song was over of course, the kids begged for another one, but breakfast time was over it seemed, as Káralu was signaling everyone to stand up.
The past couple of days, I had gathered that these people were more or less like some kind of sea-gypsies, which was fitting I suppose, given that a lot of them looked like they could have been from India, sort of… maybe not. Anyways, camp had been in the slow process of breaking down since the day after my arrival, and as I had helped Káralu’s family load up their goods into their boat, a teal masterpiece with yellow, red, and purple inlay, I had seen that the boats were not only places where people slept on voyages but also filled with various items that I could only assume were for sale, which was what tipped me off to their itinerant lifestyle. In their case, Káralu’s mother, Larolai, was a seamstress who made what to me were very beautiful embroidered fabric bags… maybe we should get introductions out of the way first, though.
So, by now just about everyone in the group had introduced themselves to me, but I had prioritized remembering Káralu’s immediate family members because they were the people whose tent I was sleeping in and with which I was spending the most time. At the head of the family was Nariṣanka, the old man who had tried to cut off my head who I was now secure was Káralu’s grandfather. He had a wife, also named Narinjaḫi (same as the little girl), and two sons, Paṣaṣa and Ruḫċimbat. While I had initially assumed that Ruḫċimbat was Káralu’s father because of the resemblance, he was actually his uncle, but it seemed like that was a running joke… the assumption that he was his dad, I mean. In actuality, Paṣaṣa was Káralu’s dad, and between him and Larolai, there were three kids. Well, technically four, cuz I had learned that Káralu was a twin by observing one of the photographs of him as a little boy in the tent (yes, they had photographs), but his twin was nowhere to be found, and I could only assume he was dead. The remaining children were two girls, Sarom, who was 12, and Balanko, who was 9. Káralu was apparently older than me at 16, but I didn’t know by how many months since my birthday was coming up in November. Ruḫċimbat had had a slew of kids of his own with a woman named Ninjanjájaro (try saying that five times fast), but it was going to be awhile before I remembered all their names, cuz there were ten of them in total. The ones I did remember were the two oldest boys, Ṣurdi and Ṣirsa, who were also twins, and older than Káralu at 17, and married, with their own kids. Ṣurdi and his wife Ḫuḫanur had three kids already, but Ṣirsa and his wife Ḫósajing only had one baby. And, well… that shriveled old lady who went at my dick with a knife? That was Nariṣanka’s aunt, Taitarako. Lovely woman, to be sure.
How did I know all that already? Like, the intricacies of everyone’s relationships and what not? Well, to make a long story short, there was a lot of pointing and patting on the back, and so on. Ages were indicated using fingers, and they had a really strange way of counting on their hands that I needed a tutorial on before I could understand how old anyone was. Essentially, they held up a fist for one, and then holding up your index finger was two, and so on. Hence, when you got to holding all five fingers up, that was in fact six, after which you touched your fingers to your thumb, until what was three in English was ten. I guess it was kind of handy, cuz you didn’t need two hands the way Americans do to show ten, but it took me a few times going over it to get it. Besides that, you can learn a lot about people without actually being able to speak the same language. As to what they did with themselves, that was kind of harder to put together.
I knew that Rawa Ċimbat or ‘Uncle Ċimbat’ (Ruḫċimbat) was a bare-knuckle fighter, or at least that seemed to be the case. I knew because his knuckles looked like they were permanently swollen, and they had a number of scars on them, and of course when I asked how he had gotten them, he had gotten up and taken a playful swing at my face, to which I had ducked and everyone had laughed. Apparently he and his dad were both bare-knuckle fighters, and the way they all gestured and imitated a crowd cheering when they pointed to their fists and then pointed at Nariṣanka, I was pretty sure they were trying to tell me he was famous somehow. Káralu had similar scars on his knuckles as well, but not as many, and the way they reacted when I asked if that was his trade as well, well… it obviously wasn’t. “Ċele, ċele, ċele, ċele!” They had all said almost immediately when I asked, and Larolai came and hugged her son from behind and leaned her head on his shoulder and started to complain, almost as if she were saying “not my baby boy, he’ll never be into that nonsense” or something to that effect. Paṣaṣa however, was a musician, and was one of a group of about four guys in the camp that played this thing that reminded me of the Brazilian berimbau (which I only knew about cuz I had a mild obsession with capoeira for a little bit the year before) with the way it doubled as a string and a percussion instrument, and it was even played in more or less the same way, but it had three strings instead of just one and could be tapped or bowed like a fiddle, and it had a wider range of notes as well. I knew that because the four of them played the whole night during my ‘welcome dinner’, and he also played regularly during the day when people felt like… not working.
See, breaking down camp was apparently a man’s job, and the men were very slow about it. On one hand, seeing them break down camp concerned me, because part of me wanted to go find that spot where I had woken up in the forest to see if I could go back. On the other hand, I hadn’t touched any standing stones like Claire Fraser, and so there was no obvious way for me to get back. If we had three hands, I would add that it was annoying to watch the way the men just didn’t really seem to care about getting their shit done, though. Things were very gendered, which was something that was hard not to notice right off the bat, and at the time the men were coming off as lazy. The women spent most of the day tending their fires and preparing food, washing clothes, and caring for children in some capacity. I remember being shocked as I watched Ḫuḫanur with her three kids, all of whom were under 5, two of which still nursed, juggle the washing of clothes, and the long hours of food prep with TERRIBLE cooking implements. All of her younger kids were old enough to be able to walk, so they would often just come right up to her while she was say, chopping vegetables or herbs on a crappy little wooden chopping board with an even worse knife and pull her tit out for a snack, and she would just kind of work around their little heads. Her oldest daughter, Dadin, looked to be between 3 and 4, and the girls under the age of 10 would mostly just hang around the beach and play, either with dolls or pretend, and occasionally some tag here and there with the boys. They did NOT play ball however, and if they swam, they swam fully dressed, in stark contrast to the boys and the men.
What did the men do? Well, besides breaking down camp for an hour or so at a time, one or two of them would would go with the other girls aged 10 and up into the woods to go get things like freshwater, berries, mushrooms, and other foraging items for their moms. And when I say ‘men’, that encompassed everyone above the age of 12 or 13, essentially. Remember the stragglers who had come out of the tents half dressed who seemed to have been interrupted in the midst of having sex? Well, they were indeed younger than me, and that’s precisely what they were doing… with their wives. These people got married VERY young, which definitely came as kind of a shock to me at first.
Besides running the girls up into the woods for forage and ever so lazily breaking down camp though, the men did, well… nothing. Nothing productive, anyways. They’d get out their instruments and dance, they’d play various different kinds of games or practice fighting, they’d fish, or they’d take their clothes off and swim. They spent a lot of time in the water actually, so much so that a lot of them didn’t even bother getting dressed for large segments of the day, unless it was their turn to take the girls into the woods. So the girls swam in their dresses, the women didn’t swim at all cuz they were practically chained to their fires, while no fucks were given by the men and boys. Everyone just kind of let it all hang out and that was just that. Modesty as far as they were concerned, was an entirely feminine concept.
I’ll be honest, I thought this was really awkward at first. Besides the shenanigans of my first day with them, I had NEVER been naked in front of members of the opposite sex before. At least not since I was a very small child, and since I didn’t have sisters, the only woman who had ever seen me that way at all was my mom… and my friend Dylan’s mom when I was about 5 and was forced to take a bath at a sleepover. So, my second day, Káralu woke me up, sitting on top of me naked with his balls on my stomach ready to go for a swim. He kept insisting that I take all my clothes off, but I was very vigilant about at least keeping my pants on, so he gave up and led me out of the tent that way with a tight grip on my hand, which, as I’m sure you can imagine was also kind of awkward. I mean, my friends and I would hold hands as a joke sometimes, but he was holding it for real, with interlocking fingers and everything, and he wasn’t wearing any clothes, and without my sash my pants were practically falling off. When I got out to the wet part of the beach, a couple of the guys were playing some sort of ball game that looked more or less like soccer, but they had already lost their clothes and seemed confused as to why I was still dressed. So, I submitted to peer pressure and sheepishly let my pants fall to my ankles before I threw them back on the dry sand. As soon as I did, they all cheered and I let out an embarrassed laugh.
The butterflies that felt like they were about to explode out of my stomach quickly died down, and I was able to settle in to being comfortable in my own skin. I did take a moment to appreciate the bodies of all the guys I was playing with, but curiosities are pretty easily satisfied when everyone’s naked, cuz what you see is what you get, I guess. One thing that I did noticed was that no one was circumcised, which despite the fact that neither myself nor any of my friends were, it was still fairly common in the United States. Not so with these people, which was for the best. I guess the only part that was still kind of weird after the first minute was wondering what to do with my hands. It’s amazing how accustomed we all are to hanging our hands off of our belt loops or stuffing them in our pockets. I noticed that I was grabbing myself quite a bit, either itching my nuts or pubes (which they all did quite a bit too) or pulling on my dick, the latter of which I did every once in awhile to maintain a certain degree of arousal so that it didn’t shrink to an embarrassing size. I was apparently doing this a little too much though, cuz the guys took notice of it, and one of them, a guy named Yaṣulka (who was an adult by American standards, at 19) decided to jerk himself to an actual erection to make fun of me, which caused the expected physical response in me, making everyone laugh again, and me turn red as a beet.
That was probably the most embarrassing thing that happened the whole time, though. After those first couple hours on my second day and the subsequent swimming breaks that came after short intervals of packing, I got used to the nudity, and by my third day I wasn’t nervous at all, and I actually enjoyed it. My whole life in the United States, nudity had been so taboo that it was considered over the top and ever so slightly ‘gay’ by a lot of the other guys on my soccer team that my friends and I would take showers after practice. Here though, wherever ‘here’ was, with these people, it was just a daily part of life, and it was really liberating, relaxing, and dare I say, kind of masculine. There’s something deeply manly about displaying your body to other guys, and I didn’t expect that. It’s also a really good confidence builder, cuz you realize pretty quickly that everyone’s bodies are pretty similar, especially where penis size is concerned. Most guys’ dicks rest at more or less the same length, which is a hell of a lot smaller than they will let on, and we all suffer the effects of shrinkage when coming in and out of colder water.
One thing I noticed pretty quickly however was that I was actually rather more fit than a lot of the guys, even the ones who were older than me. Maybe ‘more fit’ isn’t the right phrase though, cuz they seemed to be able to run for hours at a time and hardly break a sweat. Cutter, I was cutter, and by a wide margin too, owing to the fact that I had actually spent long hours in the gym at my local high school lifting weights and downing protein shakes with multiple scoops with my friends. This was the source of a lot of commentary by the guys in camp, who would look at me and flex as hard as they could while we were playing ball or just when I walked by. That was another thing I was being asked pretty consistently to do actually—to flex, I mean— and it was kind of annoying. Not that they were in bad shape, but there was no culture of bigorexia among them, and so they had never used modern workout equipment to fine tune even their smallest muscles the way American teenage boys did, and they had also never taken workout supplements like protein shakes and creatine.
My figure was actually the source of my own nickname, Mirċya, which confused me at first. The first person to call me that was Yaṣulka, right after I had popped a boner when he had given himself one as a joke. I remember him pointing and laughing at me and exclaiming ,“Mągularau koi Ṣmirċyain soḫo!” I would later learn that that meant “he even turns red like the mirċyas”. The other guys playing had agreed that I looked like one on account of my figure, which I knew because they would flex and then say something with mirċya in it. By the end of the day, Káralu, Yaṣulka, and a kid named Nakaṣak showed me these little carved, muscular wooden figurines with almost cat-like faces whose bodies were painted red, which they called by the same name. I would later learn that these guys were thought to be the smiths of lightning, who not only fashioned it but carried it to the storm god.
But, enough about being a kid in the candy store. What about those photographs? Were they in color, black and white, or sepia? What was the quality like, and how the fuck did they have photos to begin with? The photos were actually pretty high resolution, but they had a sepia-like tint to them that gave them a sort of 19th century feel. As to how they got them, it would be a little while before I found out. The photos weren’t even the most impressive piece of technology they had available to them, though. After breakfast and music time was over with the kids on the morning of my third day, it was Káralu’s turn to go with the girls on their foraging expedition, which meant that I was supposed to go as well because I was beginning to pick up on the fact that I was considered to be his responsibility. After dismissing the kids, he and I walked over to his family’s boat and he climbed in pretty effortlessly and got into the cabin. I didn’t know what was up yet of course, but I did when he came out with two rifles, one of which he tossed to me before jumping back down onto the sand. I had of course seen them the day before when a couple of other guys took the girls up into the woods, but this was my first chance to get a good look at them.
I had been eager to get my hands on one for a closer inspection of course, because at first sight they looked like AK-47s, which gave me some hope that somehow, by some fluke, I was in my time, or on Earth. But, once I had one in my hands, I noticed that there was no magazine, which confused me for a moment until I noticed that it had a revolving cylinder that appeared to fire out of the lower barrel. For just a second, this made me want to cry, cuz it was one of those little moments where I realized that no matter how hard I wished it, I was not in Kansas anymore, but this was quickly interrupted by Káralu, who gave me a black bandolier to hang around my shoulder and then instructed me to check the cylinder the way he did to make sure it was fully loaded, which of course it was. I also noticed that the cylinder had eight fairly modern-looking rounds in it as opposed to six, and what I mean by that is that there was nowhere to obviously load the powder in like the old revolving rifles the US Army used in the Seminole Wars.
“Tuṣkarkan! Ṣnarinin!” He yelled as he walked passed me over to the camp, “Tuṣkarkan!”
All of the girls aged ten and up started to gather around the two of us with their baskets. A couple of them pointed at my bare feet and said something to Káralu about it, apparently under the impression that I was going to need shoes. Although I had a pair of socks that were on loan to me from Káralu, I didn’t want to ruin them prancing around without shoes, and since everyone’s shoes were made out of wood, mine were still in the making. That drunken degenerate who was the last one to show up to my ‘welcoming’? His name was Waċai, and it just so happened that out of all the people in camp, he was the cobbler. So, I wasn’t expecting my shoes to be ready any time soon. Still, I knew for a fact that they had already been commissioned because the day before he had taken measurements of my feet. I hadn’t worn shoes now for about three full days though, since I had taken my hiking boots off to climb into bed with Matt back in Utah, so I was getting used to being barefoot. Furthermore, whatever Káralu said to them, he made it clear that I didn’t need them, and we were off.
To where, you might ask? Right back up the trail I had been brought down a couple of days previously, and then… well, nowhere in particular. When I had been brought down that way before, I suppose I was doing a lot of gawking at the fact that I had somehow or other ended up in an old growth forest. I hadn’t paid much attention to the apparently exploited nature of the woods the closer we got to the beach. Not exploited in the sense of breaking branches off trees to make tools and appliances or just for firewood (there was ample driftwood on the beach for that), but rather the sense that people had been walking off the trail and digging up tubers, picking leaves off their favorite herbs, canvasing the bushes for berries, etc. Now, since the girls had been the ones doing all of the foraging, despite the fact that Káralu and I took turns alternating between the front and the back of the line, neither of us were leading. The girls not only knew very well where they had been before, but also what to look for and where to find it.
Initially we stopped at a small creek where we all filled up on water, and then they decided to cross the creek with their baskets on their heads. The water was FREEZING fucking cold, so much so that I let out a bit of a howl when I put my first foot in, but they all laughed and whispered to each other and just kept moving, despite the fact that it went half way up my stomach and thus up to most of their chests. Seriously, not even one of them flinched at the temperature, and they seemed to think it was very funny watching me trying to cross without shoes, especially when I stubbed my toe on a rock. “God fucking damn it!” I yelled. This would be the new catch phrase of the day, as I learned as soon as I got to the other side.
“Gaht, fahking damet!” Laughed a girl named Ṣemánako.
I remembered her name because she was extremely pretty. Anyways, every time something went wrong for the rest of the day, that was the go-to phrase, except everyone pronounced it the way she did, because she was quite obviously the alpha.
The girls spent a lot of time gathering mushrooms off of fallen trees and tree trunks when we were in the old growth area, but we stopped at a clearing where the ground was carpeted with a mixture of grass and other flowering plants where they took to digging up these purple-flowered plants for their hairy, carrot-like taproots. There were a number of songbirds on the ground that at first glance looked and sounded kind of like a mixture of starlings and tits, but on closer inspection I noticed they had teeth and lacked tail feathers. There was also a very large animal in the clearing that nobody seemed to be afraid of in the least, but initially gave me pause. It was about the size of a Great Dane, but it was built like a monkey with a very long, prehensile tail that alternated between curling up and swishing about. It also was foraging the purple-flowered plants, although not just the tubers, but the plant in general, and it just sort of sat there in the lotus position and lazily tore out the plants around it to stuff them in its very strange, red-nosed face. Yes, it had a big, fat red nose on a very odd, sort of lemur-ish face, and two long ears with scraggly black toughs on the ends and two prominent, dark-skinned tits on its chest that apparently didn’t make it female, because they sat atop a furry round belly below which its fluffy balls were visible between its legs. I also noticed that it had two thumbs on either side of its hands and a grayish coat and golden amber eyes. As it was apparently harmless, Káralu signaled me to come over to it while the girls did their foraging and then gestured to me and then his ear and said, “Ṣerdej.” He was telling me to listen.
“Trynian.” He said, looking straight at it, but it ignored him, “Trynian!”
The animal didn’t respond, and he made a clicking sound and then whistled to get its attention, but still nothing. He then turned and looked at me, sort of embarrassed, and then tried again, but it wouldn’t look at him. When he tried to get a little closer, it quickly got up and walked away on all fours with its tail in the air like a cat and plopped itself down a little closer to the girls. Káralu let out a disappointed sigh and shrugged before sitting down where it had been and signaled me to do the same.
The grass was pretty tall, I would say almost waist-high, but Fat Monkey Rudolf had uprooted a decent amount of it in the immediate vicinity, which left a fair amount of dirt. Once I sat down, I could hardly see over the top of it to see the girls doing their foraging, which was fine, because I was tired after the long hike and still kind of wet from crossing the creek earlier. I took my bandolier off and laid down on the soft, turned-up soil and looked up at the blue sky above me and just took in everything I was sensing. I could hear the girls chattering away in their language, but that kind of faded into the background as a slight breeze swept through the clearing, causing the grass and the trees to rustle softly. Káralu started humming one of their strange tunes for a moment before lying down next to me with his arms tucked up behind his head as a pillow. His BO was pretty musky, but then I could also smell my own, since we had been out in the heat now for a couple of hours, and to be perfectly honest I’ve always liked that smell anyways, so… I wasn’t bothered.
“Trynian, Trynian, Trynian…” He said, “Ne rongata goi?”
I had no idea what he was saying at the time, but my mind was already drifting to how I got to be where I was and what exactly I was going to do about it, so I just said, “I don’t know, dude. I don’t know.”
He rolled over on his side and looked at me. I wasn’t looking at him, but his silent stare started to make me feel awkward after a little bit, so I rolled over to look at him back. He said something else inquisitive, and for some reason I assumed that he was asking me where I was from, so I decided to answer him honestly.
“The United States of America.”
“Yunairet… States.. ahv Amereca…” He repeated.
“Yep! Where the hell is this?” I asked, but he didn’t seem to understand, so I sighed.
It all of the sudden came to my mind that maybe it would be best to draw pictures, and since we were lying about two feet apart with nothing but turned up dirt between us, I decided to pat the soil immediately in front of me down so that it would be suitably compact for me to get started. I proceeded to draw the United States with one of the discarded roots of the purple-flowered plants, starting out with the shape of the country and then moving inward. I took my time. I made the map as accurate and detailed as I possibly could, drawing out the coastlines, lakes, and the boundaries of the states as best as I could remember them. It took me about ten minutes or so, and if I’m going to be honest, it was a rather impressive map… considering the fact that it was drawn with a root in the dirt. Once I was done, I pointed the root at the United States and made my declaration.
“This is the United States of America.” I said.
For a moment he looked kind of confused, but then his eyes widened as if he had just had an epiphany. He signaled me to give him the root, and then he went ahead to do something rather strange. Instead of erasing my drawing completely, he took a lot of care to work within it, only erasing what he needed to as he went along. The first thing he did, was erase the Great Lakes, after which he drew a large, meandering something-or-other over a big section of Utah, and after that his focus was on the Pacific Northwest region, where he seemed to extend Washington State up way hell and gone up into what would be Canada and adding a jagged coastline with what seemed to be various islands before erasing the border between Washington and Oregon and then part of California and redrawing a very different set of borders. According to his representation, Washington, three quarters of Oregon, a claw-shaped section of Northwestern California, most of Idaho and part of Northern Utah and a section of Wyoming and Montana were all part of one very strangely shaped… country? Was that a country? Or was it just a province? Or was he just fucking around?
“Druksiṣassa Keprasahar.” He said, pointing to it.
I was certainly curious as to what this meant, so I decided to point to where I knew my home town of Richland would be and then give him a questioning look.
“Priṣtona.” He said.
Ok, maybe not. I mean, to be perfectly honest, when we had visited Seattle several times when I was little, people from there didn’t seem to know where anything east of Wenatchee was, so whatever. I mean, it was pretty obvious that somehow, I wasn’t in the United States anymore, but the fact that he had carved a chunk out of my little map of it and was calling it something and naming places was interesting, so I continued. I pointed to Portland, which he called Ḫaḫorṣank, and then to Seattle, which was Uruja Nuṣuṣmahar, while Spokane was Korimbor. What about Boise? Lalḫura. And Salk Lake City? There was some confusion, here. I initially thought that, like he did with the Pacific Northwest, he had drawn a country over what looked to be about a third of the area of Utah, but whatever section of it I pointed to, he just called it the same thing—Rewalundi. After a few times, he decided to lift up the leather bag of water that was lying down next to him and tap it and then point to the same area on the map, which made me realize that this was a body of water, not a political entity. I pointed back to the area within the lines that he had drawn over much of the Pacific Northwest and then to the water bag, and he shook his head no.
“Druksiṣassa Keprasahar.” He repeated, “Druxyşassă Praşanc, tohá.”
He shrugged with the last part, almost like he was saying “or you could say it this way”, and while the first word sounded similar, there was a marked difference in pronunciation here which, coupled with the word Praşanc that I remembered from a couple of days ago, tipped me off to the fact that those two words were from another language, one that Káralu and the rest of his people didn’t speak amongst themselves. In fact, it rather reminded me of the language the cultists had been speaking. More importantly however, I realized that while what he had drawn over a large section of Utah was a body of water that immediately conjured up memories of learning about Lake Bonneville as a kid in school, this other thing, this Druxyşassă Praşanc or whatever, was a political entity of some kind, probably a country.
So, no Great Lakes, a more or less filled Lake Bonneville, and a strangely shaped country or province in the Pacific Northwest. What did this mean? It kind of flipped in my head like a switch of sorts, and I sat up and looked at him wide-eyed, with my jaw practically on the ground with amazement—was I on Earth? I had to be, right? For a little bit I tried to reason otherwise, but the more excuses I made, the less they made sense. I mean, yes… there were a whole host of animals and plants that just don’t exist on Earth, sure, but if I wasn’t on Earth in some capacity, why would he have drawn the borders of this Druxyşassă Praşanc INSIDE the borders of the United States? How did he know to do that? Clearly, he recognized the landmass, or at least part of it, and he had merely corrected my drawing to suit his own knowledge base. Sure, he had erased the Great Lakes and drawn Lake Bonneville, but he hadn’t modified the West Coast at all, but rather had worked around it and even added Canadian portions of it, which I recognized. His addition of Vancouver Island was very clear. He seemed to agree that that was the proper shape for the coastline, but just not on the political division of the land behind it.
But, if I was on Earth, then just where the fuck was I? Where do dinosaurs exist, and weird, red-nosed, double-thumbed primates? Where do quasi-Indian-looking people with hobbit ears but not hobbit feet who live in colorful Viking boats come from? If none of this existed in the present, then did it exist in the past, and we just didn’t know about it? My mind was awash with all the different possibilities, and I turned away and sat up and rested my arms on my knees and just stared ahead of me at the girls while they foraged and whatever that thing was that sat lazily next to them stuffing its face. The only plausible explanation I could come up with was that somehow, by some fucking giant ass fluke, I was in another dimension, but one in which Earth existed, in which evolution had gone very differently, but somehow not so different as to have recognizable groups of animals, and to also have people… the mathematical odds of which are probably so low as to be functionally impossible. The fat, red-nosed creature sitting over by the girls was obviously a mammal, and while I was yet to see a true bird (as in, a toothless bird), what I was seeing flittering between the grass of the meadow and the tree line were, if not birds, a very closely related lineage of the dinosaurs. And Káralu and his people were obviously human, as far as I could tell. Yeah, they had big, funny ears, but… everything else seemed pretty human to me. For a second I started thinking about Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, only to realize I knew fuck all about it besides that it had something to do with wormholes. Perhaps I had inadvertently fallen through a wormhole?
No. No, that wasn’t what happened here. I was sure of it. I started to meticulously comb through the events of the last few days in my head, with specific regard to the dreams I’d been having and the things I’d been seeing. The things that seemed paranormal, that is. I mean, I guess this whole experience was ‘paranormal’ in the strictest sense, but there were certainly elements of it that stood out. I hadn’t seen any dinosaurs before I woke up in that stone circle, but I had seen an animal that, come to think of it looked pretty ominous, what with its white, skull-like markings on its face. However, as strange and supernatural as that thing might have seemed, the more I thought about it, the more I came to the conclusion that it hadn’t done anything that you wouldn’t expect of an animal. It charged me, literally scared the piss out of me, and then walked away when I stood there frozen and looking it in the eye, only to charge my stepbrother later after my friends and I had turned tail and run. It had gotten into a tussle with a cougar and killed it, and it snuggled up to me like it knew me, all while I talked with the strange voice of an old woman, and after waking up in a stone circle I had found myself surrounded by people who looked like priests.
Whatever had happened, however I got to this weird place where the impossible wasn’t only possible but a daily reality, had something to do with them, which made my heart sink just thinking about it. I hadn’t stepped into a wormhole or ‘fallen through time’, I had been ‘invited’, just like the old woman said, but for what purpose I had absolutely no idea. The whole train of thought made me queazy. I thought about the image of the knife in the old man’s hand, the way it was dripping with blood, and I could almost hear his voice on the breeze.
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