May 22, 2016

Pure Human - Big Men on Campus

[Posted by Ted H]

Did I miss a week? Psssssssssh
I should be writing more, but things happen. My new job requires me to be sitting all day at a desk...all my previous jobs involved me standing and walking around doing things. So I feel this urge to always be on my feet when I can and choosing activities when I can...excuse me for not wanting to be 500lbs...


[Pure Human - Big Men on Campus]

            "University at Albany State," Blake said again as John parked and they made for the campus "It sounds odd to say no matter how many times I try it."
            "Well it's a real place if you can't tell," John said "Kind of makes Cazenovia pale in comparison when you look at it up close."
            "Pretty sure the McDonalds in Central Square makes Caz pale in comparison," Blake said as he lit up then laughed at a "We are a smoke free campus" sign as he walked by it. They walked through, getting more than a couple sideways looks from students as they passed on their way to one of the academic buildings. "This the first time you've been on a campus since Caz kicked you out?" John asked. "Meh," Blake replied "I might've wandered into SU territory when I was drunk a couple times."
            They made their way inside a building and up to a floor where the professor offices were. "Bryant, Bryant, Bryant," Blake kept repeating as he made his way down a hall, reading every door label. "Bingo," he said as he found the right door and immediately knocked several times. "Is anybody home?" he asked as he knocked again.
            "Check the office hours," John suggested as he pointed to a schedule posted right next to the door. Blake looked to the post and leveled his gaze as he read "All hours and classes: cancelled until further notice." He looked back to John. "Might be a coincidence," John suggested. "You know how I feel about coincidences," Blake said before pounding on the door again.
            "I know you're in there!" he yelled as he pounded on the door "Dr. Kenny Bryant, open up!"
            "He's obviously not in there," John said.
            "If I were trying to avoid people, this is where I'd hide. Put up a sign saying go away and just chill in my office."
            "Yeah, well if he's really laying low in there, what makes you think constantly pounding on the door is gonna make him come out?"
            "I just need to say the magic words."
            "What? Please? Pretty please? Pretty please with sugar on top?"
            "That last one might work, but I got a better one." Blake pounded yet again on the door as he shouted "Let's talk about Derek Melrose!"
            Almost immediately there was a scrambling heard behind the door and it quickly opened. In the doorway was a man also in his 30s with short black hair and a poorly grown mustache. He wore a white button down shirt with a brown tie hanging loosely around his collar. He had thin framed glasses that Blake suspected weren't really needed and dress pants held up by cheap looking suspenders. He didn't look as ragged as Melrose was earlier that day, but he too looked like he had seen his fair share of stress recently.
            "How do you know that name?" he asked with a worried look on his face. "The real question here," Blake said "Is why do you know him?" Bryant was taken aback, but didn't look like he was going to answer. "I suggest you go and find him yourself if you have any questions that need answering regarding Dr. Melrose," Bryant said as he attempted to close his door, but Blake stuck his foot inside.
            "The last time someone blew off my inquiries and shut a door in my face ended up dying minutes later," Blake said "So excuse me for not wanting to walk away from you so easily." Bryant gave a confused look. "What are you talking about?" he asked. He stopped trying to close his door and Blake withdrew his foot. "We tracked down Dr. Melrose earlier today," John explained "He ended up committing suicide. Left a note begging for forgiveness, and he implied more than just he were guilty of something."
            Bryant closed his eyes and sighed. "He also set fire to most evidence of his wrongdoing, whatever that was," Blake added "So now we're here, and we need answers. Half a dozen people are dead, maybe more." Bryant took a step back, but maintained himself in the doorway to bar entry. "So what led you to me?" he asked "Did Melrose implicate me?"
            "Blake here took all remaining notes and such and organized them, eliminated what he felt was unimportant and looked for anything that stood out in terms of other people or information," John explained "I'm pretty sure he's autistic."
            Blake elbowed John as he took over "Your phone number was written a couple times on different papers, not to mention your initials written various times on his calendar. He had a lot of dead end jobs, and we figured he had to once be important as a doctor, so we searched and came up with him once being a professor here. Found your name on the website and noticed you were both associate professors at the same time. You two were up to something, even before he got canned."
            Bryant bit his lip as the two men talked. "Start talking," Blake said "You know something about the things running around, time to start spilling." Bryant shook his head. "Not here," he said. "Why not?" Blake asked impatiently. "No, please," Bryant begged "I can show you!"
            "Show us what?" John asked cautiously.
            "Show you were those things came from," Bryant explained.
            Blake and John looked to each other. "What do you think?" John asked as Blake turned back to Bryant. "Do you own a gun?" he asked. Bryant shook his head. "Do you plan to off yourself in any way to avoid having to face whatever it is you did?" Blake asked. "Christ, no," Bryant said "Let me give you the address on where to go. We'll meet a 7am sharp tomorrow. There, I'll explain everything. Just, please leave now before people start asking questions."
            "Why not leave now?" Blake asked "I'm not interested in putting this off."
            "This is something my family and peers know nothing about that I'd prefer to keep that way."
            Blake rolled his eyes. "Crack of dawn, tomorrow, "he said "Be there, or I come back with a megaphone." Bryant nodded and shut his door. "Hope this one doesn't find a way to kill himself before tomorrow," John said "But at least he gave us something to work with in case he does." Blake shrugged and went to leave with John. "Now we just need to figure where to spend tonight," he said.
            "I'm sure Joey has calmed down," John said "We just have to be a little more respectful. And by we, I mean you."
            "I'm just gonna let you do all the talking."
            "Look at the bright side; We're making headway. Maybe tomorrow we'll figure this all out and be out of this town."
            "That'd be nice," Blake said as he dug around for a cigarette "I'm taking it as a victory that someone didn't just off themselves after meeting us."
            "Did you get to calling 9-1-1 about Melrose?"
            "I thought you did."
            "You have my phone still, how could I?"
            "Oh, well I guess now is a good a time as any."
            "Jesus, Blake!"

May 8, 2016

Pure Human - Couples Counseling

[Posted by Ted H]

Happy Mothers Day...unless you don't have kids, or one of your kids is a bitch who always has to be a cunt and ruin things for that case, Happy Sunday...

Full disclosure - I'm not entirely done with the novel...I AM sure how to end it and know how the final confrontation will end. The only thing up in the air is if Anin and Joey will survive. One, the other, both, neither...I have no clue. Sometimes, when you let the story write itself, the unexpected happens...But if one, the other or both die in the end, then this part here will be super depressing in retrospect...


[Pure Human - Couples Counseling]

            Anin and Joey said nothing to each other during their trip home. Anin hadn't done much of any talking after the police released her. Joey was just thankful that no additional harm had come to Suzie and that Anin was free to go. She was also barred from returning to the hospital for visits, but Joey wasn't complaining. Back at home though, he felt the silence had gone on long enough.
            "Are you okay?" he asked, annoyed at the simplicity of it, but unable to ask anything else at this juncture. Anin simply nodded. "Anin, please," Joey said "What happened in there?" Anin stared blindly down, lost in her own thoughts. "Anin!" Joey called louder, snapping her back. "Why didn't they kill her?" she asked, confusing Joey.
            "They killed everyone else that night, why not Suzie?"
            Joey shrugged. "It wasn't real though," he tried "Just a dream. All in your head."
            "It was real Joey, God damn it!" Anin yelled "It happened. Those things happened. They killed that girl's family and they fucking toyed with her!"
            Joey got annoyed and got out of the car. "I'm not in the mood for this discussion."
            "How can you not believe in this?" Anin asked as she exited the car and followed him. "You have shown nothing to actually believe!" Joey yelled back. They were doing this outside the house in public, but neither of them cared at the moment. "You and Blake have gone around speculating for the last two days, claiming some sort of fucking monster is responsible! Do you even hear yourselves. You're using dreams to confirm your ludicrous thought process! We were just in a hospital, posing as some dying man's family just so you and Blake could get close to a traumatized girl! Where's the confirmation?"
            "No," Anin said as she folded her arms "Do not make this about rational thinking when you know what I do. You know the things I've seen."
            "And I've put up with them all this time because you've never gone this far before. Anin, before all you did was give people advice and read their cards or fortunes. Now look at you; breaking into hospitals and hanging around crime scenes."
            "That little girl is going to wake up and tell everyone what I saw. A fucking monster killed her family!"
            "She's eight years old! Everything is a fucking monster to her! Maybe you were in her head for real, sure. And maybe you just saw things from her perspective, where everything unknown in the world is nothing more than a scary monster."
            Anin balled her hands into fists as tears formed in her eyes. "Don't you dare trivialize what I do. Don't you pretend to understand it better than I can."
            "Anin," Joey continued "Just let this go. You were never meant to solve murders. You've thrown yourself into a world that you've never exposed yourself to before and you can't even keep your head above the water."
            "What would you have me do? Stop? Tell Blake he's on his own and go away?"
            "Yes! Anin, since this has begun, you haven't eaten, you can't sleep, and you can barely keep yourself together anymore. This is too much! And Blake doesn't do shit to actually help you because he's all too happy to torture you if it serves whatever twisted game he's playing!"
            "I can't sleep, Joey. Every time I do-"
            "I know, I know. The reoccurring dream or whatever where the fading man hurts you. So why not have me in that dream with you? Have me do what you and Blake did last night if it'll make you feel better."
            "You can't, Joey."       
            "Why not?"
            "Because you don't believe. Do you think Blake was my first choice last night? I just wanted to feel safe knowing I was with someone else in there. I wanted you. But you don't believe, you won't believe. Blake's a fucking asshole and he ended up doing almost exactly the worst thing that I thought he would do in there, but I also knew there was no one else and I could trust him."
            "Then what can I do to-"
            "There's nothing you can do. There's nothing I want you to do but understand. You're normal and I love that about you. All the chaos and crazy I see and endure, and then I'm with you and I can be a normal girl in a normal relationship. But now I came here and brought all this crazy with me and mixed my worlds together and now everything is all fucked up."
            Joey sighed as he opened the front door. "I'm going to call in sick today," he said "Spend the rest of today with you and we can just pretend everything is normal." Anin smiled at the thought but ultimately shook her head. "No," she said "They need you at the office. And pretending to be normal isn't going to really help, not until this is all over."
            "Are you sure?" Joey asked as he put a hand on Anin's arm and brought her close.
            "Yeah," she replied "Once this is over, we can send Blake away and it'll just be you and I, being normal once again."

May 1, 2016

Pure Human - Who Dat Is?

[Posted by Ted H]

Ah....writing at work...always fun...wish I could do it more often...


[Pure Human - Who Dat Is?]

            "Any bet on who this guy is?" John asked as he stopped the car and killed the engine in front of the address that Clyde had texted. They were led to a neighborhood on the opposite side of town, much less respectable looking than the area with all the killing. Blake was too busy happily smoking away at a new pack of cigarettes that he'd happily bought from a corner convenience store on the way over. The clerk had been a Middle Eastern person who barely spoke English and didn't either bother checking IDs when Blake requested his cancer aid. Blake had been so happy, he even decided to pay for his coffee when he took some.
            "I'm beyond the guessing game at this point," Blake said as he got out and flicked his spent cigarette butt away "Let's just find out now." The grass in the yard was in bad need of mowing and the house itself looked uncared for in quite some time with broken vinyl siding and a moss covered roof with decayed shingles. Blake walked right up to the front door and banged his fist a few times.
            A chain lock being unhook sounded and the door opened a crack to reveal a man peeking out. "Are you cops?" he asked in a dry raspy voice. "Not really, no," Blake said. The man went to close the door as Blake shoved his foot in. "We're investigators," Blake said "And we already know you're a person of interest in something very peculiar."
            "You need a warrant to come in," the man said as he tried kicking Blake's foot out.
            "We just want to talk."
            "I'm armed."
            "So is this guy," Blake said as he motioned to John behind him.
            "I have nothing to do with what's happening out there," the man said, opening the door a little more to reveal his graying brown hair and tired looking face. All that seemed odd to Blake considering the man looked only in his mid 30s. "It's not my fault," the man continued.
            "There are at least half a dozen people dead out there," Blake said "And I'm trying to figure out why. That angry religious woman you encountered before is doing whatever it is she thinks she needs to do. Me? I'm just trying to find and stop whatever those things are. Help me."
            "No," the man said as he kicked Blake's foot back and slammed his door shut and locked it again. "It's not my fault!" he shouted "It wasn't supposed to happen that way! This isn't what I wanted!" Blake exhaled sharply through his nose as he turned to see John. "This guy knows something," John said "I'm not leaving until we figure out what."
            "Ya think?!" Blake yelled as he tossed his hands up "I can get us a fake warrant and a couple badges, but not today."
            "I don't think he'd buy that at this point anyway," John said.
            "It's gonna be one of those days, isn't it?" Blake asked as he pulled out John's phone from his pocket and dialed Matthew again "At this rate we'll have to go door to door all over Albany to find these things on top of the fact that no one wants to even help us figure out where they came from."
            "We can always burn Albany to the ground," John suggested "Lots of collateral, but it guarantees we get the monsters too."
            "We'll call that Plan B," Blake said as he listened to the ring back from Matthew's line before it abruptly cut off. "Hello?" Matthew said.
            "Albany sucks!" Blake yelled into the phone.
            "Oh, hello Blake," Matthew said, almost bored.
            "How's our little Lizzie?"
            "I've got a few running theories that I'm narrowing down. The mother also has a very intriguing history."
            "One crisis at a time," Blake said "You got a detailed knowledge of a bunch of lesser gods and demons and other such beings from other realms, right?"
            "Definitely more than you do," Matthew said.
            "Vitaearnus. Who dat is?"
            "Nothing I've ever heard of, or even come close to hearing of."
            "Well, he's something."
            "And where did you find out about Mr. Arnus?"
            "A dream. Anin's to be specific."
            Blake could hear Matthew groan on the other line. "Really, Blake?" he asked "A dream."
            "Well, not really a dream per se, it's complicated. But I'm still sore from an uppercut I took in there to suggest whatever I experienced in there is legit."
            "Right, right," Matthew said, sounding like he was trying to think "But I've never heard that name before. You sure this guy isn't trying to throw you off?"
            "He would have given me something more legitimate in terms of names for me to chase down, not just make one up."
            "But why even give his name?"
            "Cuz he's in control, or so he believes.
            "I'll look into it if I have time, but I don't know what you're expecting."
            "Maybe he's new on the scene?"
            "There hasn't been anything new on the supernatural front in over 2000 years if we're talking about something that has the kind of power and influence you're suggesting. Whoever this is, they've existed in our realm for a while. I'd need more information though."
            "Yeah, well, we're still having trouble nailing down the energy of this crap. Everything we test seems to point to all human."
            "Ever stop to think that maybe it's just that, human?"
            "You should see what Anin described in her last-"
            Blake was cut off by the sound of a gunshot. He looked to John. "That came from inside the house," John said. "Gotta go call you back later bye!" Blake said as he quickly hung up and ran with John back towards the house. "Still locked tight!" Blake said as he unsuccessfully tried the doorknob. "Out of the way!" John yelled as he ran up and kicked the door, blowing it off of its latch and chain and slamming it open and against the wall inside the house.
            Right inside was the living room where an assortment of furniture clashed randomly with the deep blue carpeting. Various bits of mail and paperwork were strewn all over the coffee table along with several empty beer cans, whiskey bottles and glasses. An ash tray full of spent cigarettes sat in the corner. Nearby was a wastebasket full of even more papers, all burning from a recently lit fire. Overlooking it all was a recliner with the man from before sitting, a revolver in hand and a bloody hole gaping in the back of his head.
            "Great," Blake said with a huff. John picked up one of the papers on the table and looked it over. "He left a note," he said as he began to read it aloud "I'm sorry. May God forgive me. May God forgive us all." Blake grabbed the note and crumpled it up before tossing it into the wastebasket to burn. "What did this guy do that he'd kill himself over?" John asked as Blake looked over various documents on the table.
            "Pay stubs from random dead end jobs," Blake said as he sifted through the papers "Grant rejections, unpaid bill notices, notice of termination. This guy was in over his head." He looked to the burning wastebasket and wondered what clue he just lost out on in finding out the truth behind everything. "Dr. Melrose," John said as he picked up a discarded white lab jacket and read the ID tag.
            "He didn't destroy everything," Blake decided "He couldn't have. He went to see Suzie at the hospital, Whitey happened, we weren't that far behind. He had to be pressed with guilt." John shrugged. "You're point?" he asked. "The obvious stuff is gone," Blake said "We just need to piece together the leftovers to figure out what to do next."
            "I take it we're not calling 9-1-1 for this either?" John asked as he walked back to the door and tried to close it. "We'll call on our way out, you big baby," Blake said "Just gimme a bit to figure something before we have cops crawling all over this place." He picked up papers and looked them over "For once I want to get to a person of interest first, not last."