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Chapter 8 - Surreal Dream # 1

I'se like ice, eyes like.

Walking today was heavy, but he knew in which direction he needed to go.

I'se like ice, eyes like.

In through the swing doors, out through the head.

Nothing was a problem, nothing inside his head.

I'se like ice eyes like monsters.

The monster was at his side ready to leap to attention.

Uncontrollable, gibbering but alive and part of him.

The walking wounded must have bended knees. Bend them damn you. Bend down and let whatever's in your head drop out.

I'se like ice eyes like.

No desperation today. Cool and calculated. Calm and serene. The monster was silent . . . oh so silent. The monster had eyes like pokers. Red hot pokers searing into his unconscious.

I'se like ice, eyes like pokers.

The swing doors swung, his head hung. One more picture flashed into the brain . . . a picture that would never see the light of day again.

Each picture was different . . . each picture was calculated. Calculated to harm and hurt.

Calculated to contain a monster that spoke.

It used to be Jesus Christ. But he had long terminated his residence. Since then it had been all and sundry.

The murderer from down the road ...

the brother ... the religious fanatic and the monsters in all their guises.

His brain felt like one of those crap novels lying on the shelf of some dingy bookshop, without life, without peace. Thumbed and thrown down destined to end up in a remainder pile at a seriously knocked down price.

His life was a seriously knocked down price. But that wasn't why he was here - caught in the middle of a swing door.

Here he was hip. The monsters had called off for the minute - except to give him some good advice.

The one shaped with the face of the devil . . . the one that had booted out God, Jesus and all those other impostors. He had given the best advice. Or maybe it was a she.

Why shouldn't women take the blame for some of this? Why did monsters always have to be men?

Slavering, big, men. How about a little bit of fluff . . . How about a juicy old woman with big tits.

But on this occasion the monster was definitely male. They always were the aggressive ones. But this one wasn't an aggressive one. This one seemed to understand.

Seemed to accept all the problems. Seemed to be quiet and patient... seemed to be ... yes seemed to be lying in wait.

Then there was the puffin. Where did the bloody puffin fit in. What use could the puffin be to anyone?

It just sat there reading a book and looking occasionally at a very large watch halfway up its third arm.

There was something strange about that. A puffin with human arms and three of them.

"Ignore it',, said the monster. Remember what we are here for." The monster was so understanding. So peaceful. so at one and for once the turmoil in his brain was static.

Static turmoil. That seemed a good description ion.

He liked this monster. He could control it. It was almost like a friend.

He prayed that a more violent usurper would not come his way. But then what use was praying.

He had prayed before when God and Jesus came to him. But they had long moved away.

Their voices had been wrong, their voices had been misleading. They had told him to become good that they loved him.

They had spoken through him and used him and it was a mighty sham.

He had needed the monsters dressed like the devil to tell him that and he had readily agreed. They were more forceful. The Christian monsters had reasoned with him.

He didn't need reasoning. He needed power. Somebody to tell him exactly what to do.

Somebody to be him... Yes somebody to take over from him. Somebody to give his own brain and body a rest and somebody to make his decisions.

This latest incarnation seemed to be doing that. It's voice seemed to come from much further back in his brain.

It was more difficult to see1 but it had given him peace and tranquillity ... something he had not enjoyed for some time.

But there was a difference with this one. In the past he had heard from the others... he had laid sweating in his room staring at the walls that were crawling with the most unimaginable sights.

Laying there being told first one thing and then another but unable to move as if paralysed.

Now it was different. This monster was reasoning with him. Giving him the choice of staying or going. And he had found no difficulty in getting off the bed.

There had been no other monsters guarding the door to his room. The walls consisted just of blue and white striped wallpaper and there seemed little to fear.

This monster and his puffin were different. He felt he was entering a new phase in his life.

Perhaps the good monsters were on their way back. Perhaps he had turned the corner.

Perhaps there was something in existence to believe in... Perhaps.... Perhaps .... perhaps.... * * * But it made him uncomfortable in it's uncertainty. He was still somehow angry that once again he was allowing his body, his mind and his being to be taken over in this way.

It had happened so many times in the past, but he had never got used to the violence, the sheer sense of desperation that had come with it and each time it had seemed to be more aggressive, eating away more of his mind and surely the juice of his soul.

Now he felt so much better. He had been able to get out of his room, shake his hair down and become the person he wanted to be. He had reasoning. Everybody wanted to be

somebody else. Nobody, it seemed to him, was completely happy with who they were and those that said they were, were just living a lie, existing in their own dream world unaware of what was going on around them.

Now this was no longer the case with him. The monsters and the do-gooders had departed and he was just left with this one image - the benevolent voice telling him he could get on with things, he could be in charge of his own destiny. He could go where he wanted to go and do what he ~ but he still felt an anger that was welling up inside him.

Perhaps the other monsters were lurking in his sub-conscious ready to pounce and destroy again. He could only live for this minute... this moment. He had long accepted that the voices had always been there and always would be there. He could no longer remember what, if anything, had triggered them off. He had long given up caring... He had long given up feeling.

Perhaps he needed the voices. Perhaps they guided him to the right places and perhaps without them he had no chance of existing at all. He knew they were eating away at him but perhaps in their way they were leading to re-juvenation ... a new birth... a new beginning,.. new hope.

But he still felt ANGER Ise like Ice ... Eyes like.

The new kindly voice - for he could no longer call it a monster -seemed to be gentler.

He felt he knew it better than any of those before and it was more comforting, more re- assuring just when he needed to be comforted and re-assured.

Perhaps this time would be different from the rest.

The doors swung open easily. They took little weight to push forward and they swung back swiftly as they always do in all the best Westerns. The bar room seemed deserted but on closer inspection seemed to be filled by errant spirits hovering over his head as he approached.

The voice was inside him, moving him forwards. He liked it and now the puffin was by his side.

A smiling bartender was leaning against the bar ,,. talking to some dime-a-minute girl who had to be looking for a good time. They always were. "Just take your time. Look at what's around you. Don't be distracted. You can do it," the voice inside his head said. But it wasn't a voice inside his head anymore.

It was him. He was finally in control of his destiny.

"Look at her. Brazen isn't she. Deserves it. Deserves anything. Give it to her right between the eyes boy. She only wants you between her legs. Only fucking thing she's good for boy.

It's either you or her.. either you or her." The penguin had now taken on a strange eerie look and was at his side.

"Yeah give it to her son. It's either you or her ... either you or her. Better let her have it boy. Show you're a man. You are in control you can do anything you like. We'll help you."

The puffin spoke in a high pitched drawl just like in those old time westerns.

low they were all staring at him.., looking straight at him. The voice, the crazy penguin, the woman who only had one thought for him, the bartender, the murdering bastards who drunk their whisky and rye sitting anonymously on anonymous seats. They were all there.

The puffin had the answer.

It came in the shape of a long piece of wood with rough edges.

"This'll do you son. This'll do you. Get stuck into em with this. Look at em all leering all staring, all jeering. They need to be taught a lesson, the whole bloody lot of em... and you can teach them a lesson."

Things were changing.

The puffin and the monster looked angry, but the centre of their anger felt calm and relaxed. He knew what he had to do. He knew okay and it was easy. He had the tool of destruction in his hands it was going to be easy.

He had to teach the bartender, the flusie and the rest of em a lesson and he had to do it right now. He advanced to what he thought was the bar. The woman would be first... it would be easy.

Someone, somewhere was shouting, but he cared not. He listening any longer. He had things to do ... things that important. They had to be done and he was the only person do them.

wasn't were who could He raised the wood above his head and set it off in a swirling motion. There was noise now, considerable noise. He was aware of spirits in the ether running in all directions. He was, for the first time, aware of genuine human screams. But that just wasn't possible.

He was aware of the whore coming towards him with her hands outstretched. His mind could only focus on one thing ... all women were whores... all women deserved and needed to be taught a lesson and he had been appointed as the person to carry out that lesson.

"Death to the treacherous whore she wants you... death to her" said the voice. "Death to her... DEATH TO HER," repeated the Puffin. DEATH.. DEATH.. DEATH.

The wood came down quickly first downwards and then across in an arc. It made a satisfying sound as it crunched into flesh and bone. The whore made a satisfying noise as she dropped to the floor and as the stick came down again and again it brought a grin to his face. Soon the whore would be no more.

The others ,.. well they had all gone. The bartender and the other customers, if they had really existed in the first place, were gone. They had fled. He couldn't really blame it.

Really he meant them no harm. It was the whore he was after and the whore he had got. It was the whore who was lying in front of him on the floor writhing in pain.

Soon he would complete his task and the whore would be no more. The whore would fail to exist and he would be a hero. He would be hailed as the man who killed the whore.

He sensed it would take just one more blow. One more carefully aimed and powerfully executed strike and it would all be over. He raised the instrument of destruction - of purification - above his head and prepared to bring it down.

But suddenly the puffin looked angry ... it was advancing with eyes ablaze. I'se like ice eyes like flames.

It was approaching towards him and it was shouting. But it wasn't shouting words inside his head but words outside. He didn't like the words that he heard. why had the puffin turned against him and where was the other voice to lead him now that he needed it? why had he been deserted. It had never happened before. There had to be a reason but there could be no reason.

He became more determined to go ahead with the sentence of the court.

"You are convicted of being a whore and your sentence is to be butchered to death."

That was the sentence and it was the one that he was going to carry out and if it brought pain with it, then that was just too bad. The puffin had agreed, but now the puffin no longer seemed to be helping.

He would do it on his own without any help. It would still be relatively easy. He held the wood above his head ready to strike downwards to carry out the court's sentence.

It came down swiftly, but not swiftly enough. For halfway towards its target his hands seemed to freeze and the puffin seemed to lurch forward grabbing his arms and preventing them from doing their duty.

And before he could break free, the puffin had him round the neck, had thrown him on the floor and he was pinned downwards next to the bleeding whore.

The puffin had turned traitor. He had failed to carry out the sentence. Now he would be punished himself. He felt sick, he felt hurt and slowly an eerie blackness descended.

To Be Continued