Monday, February 15, 2010

Wilbur and Chick Meet the Dark Swamp Devil

As promised weeks ago, here is the first installment of a new Chrispy novella. It a gift from me to you, Dear Reader.

Wilbur and Chick Meet the Dark Swamp Devil


The darkness filled the hot night air with thick miasmic gases: methane gas with a hint of decay and cloying humidity that made you smell your own sweat. In that Florida air was a weird perfume of sorts, an exotic smell of unknown flowers that surely caught and sucked the life from the living. The moonlight clawed to get through this myopic plasma, and where it shone puffed up clouds of mosquitoes with their sickening diseases. All these things were but the least of the red-skinned men's problems.

They spied on another group of men, distant but disgusting relatives, barely men, and certainly not blood brothers, for these traitors had long ago sold their souls to some unnamed and unknowable devil. These heinous, naked heathen chanted and conjured eerie and arcane magic.

The Seminoles had no use for these aberrant cousins, inbred between transplanted Cajuns, Haitians, and their own kind. Yet they were hired, only by white men. Some felt that this was a type of betrayal, but salved their troubled concerns knowing that their work would eradicate these magicians.

No, they had no problem taking the white man's sack of money and reporting back on the disgusting rituals they spied upon. Their grandmothers hinted at things like this around the women's fires, but the shamans and elders refused to speak of them. Perhaps, had they spoken aloud the things they were now witnessing, they might have been better prepared for the outcome. Perhaps they would not have taken the money, and what happened next might not have happened.

They were noticed. The conjurers had unseen spies that whispered inthe dark mists.

The Seminole men really had no chance from that moment. Had they chosen, they would have chosen death.

Instead of a simple death, perhaps by a slit throat, they were tortured in ways unspeakable. Madness occurred, but not quickly enough. All that could be said, was that their skin remained, which would later be tanned for book binding.

It was a dark form that first emerged, almost seeming as smoke at first.

In fact it was smoke. Dark powders were sprinkled into the logs of specially chosen Cyprus. Stringy, almost cohesive smoke oozed its way upward as sparks flew, and ashes wafted in the night. These slowly coalesced into tendrils, and still the conjurers' fire churned magic. The stuff seemed to be like jellyfish arms. A naked man, perhaps an initiate, got too close to the fire, and in a quick stroke, the smoky thing revealed how tangible it was by beheading the hapless man. The head rolled into a clump of grasses, and the skitter of insects rushed toward it in the dark night. Back at the fire, the torso of the now dead man was held aloft by the jellyfish-like thing. It gorged itself on blood. When that was done, from inside the husk of the body, bones could be heard cracking, and marrow being sucked out. Finally, more weird sucking sounds accompanied the hollowing out of the corpse. What was left was but a leathern rag, a deflated skin balloon.

En-rapt by tis gory image, the three Seminole spies never saw other dusky wisps form about their own feet, but suddenly they smelled the scent of ocean - an impossibility this far inland, this deep in the Okefenokee swamp, but there it was: salt, decayed shell fish, and tangy surf.

Oh how they screamed and screamed and screamed as their own blood, their own marrow, and their own entrails were gobbled by things that had suction cups with sharp-fanged teeth.

1 comment:

Shane Mangus said...

Great start. I visited Okefenokee as a kid, and I find it to be a wondrously creepy locale. I look forward to your next installment.


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