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A blog for poetry, prose, and pop culture.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Flash Fiction: Under a Dead Sun: Past Sins

Chapter 43

The smell was the first thing Eva's noticed. A cloying kind of rotten spoil, a decay that wouldn't seem to leave her nose. She curled her lip and tried to force it out by pulling a hankerchief around her face but the smell permeated everything. She could feel the cold tendrils of fear around her heart as she spurred her horse towards the mass of undead in front of her. She drew out her pistol and glanced over her shoulder at Moore. The damnable fop had nearly passed out when she told him what she intended, but true to his word here he was. Taking a glance back at the stage one last time,  she saw sweet old Bartley holding his hat down as maneuvered his team down the switchback.the stranger, Johnson, was leveled on the roof top, holding the scatter gun at the ready, his precious saddle bags tied around his neck.  That sonuvabitch rubbed her the wrong way, she could feel it deep inside. He would try something. She only hoped that it would be after they reached Desperation.

Eva turned her attention back to the matter at hand, the giant mass of walking dead that mounted in front of her. She cleared leather on her Colt and drew aim on one of the creatures. He was a huge bastard, shirtless, with mottled black and green skin. His distended jaws worked up and down over a a slaver of bile. She watched coldly as his head exploded into bloody fragments and took aim again. She continued to fire intermittently as she urged her horse off the road to town. Eva glanced over at Thomas, who was doing the same thing, though with far worse aim, on the other side. The plan involved them drawing as many of the monsters as they could off the main road, drawing them out into a large circle before looping back around and repeating the process, allowing the stage to get a relatively clear path to town. Eva cut hard out in to the surrounding farmland, not allowing herself to get to far ahead of the surge of creatures. She calmly reloaded her pistol, snapping off another shot at one of the beasts as it got to close and urged the horse around. She could see Moore in the distance race his horse back around. He hadn't taken it out far enough before looping back, even from this distance Eva knew that the monster were too close. Bartley knew it too, she could see him urge the horses to move even faster. That's when her nightmare came to light.

Moore brought his horse racing by the stage and Eva saw Johnson stand up. The scream caught in her throat as she watched in horror as Johnson bore down on him, the thunder of his gun echoing through the valley floor. Time seemed to slow down to a crawl as she watched Moore tumble from his horse, near the river of undead that seemed to flow in behind him. A scream ripped from her throat but she couldn't hear it, pure instinct driving her. She kicked her horse hard, jolting as she surged forward. Her gun snapped up as she tried to draw a bead on Johnson, but her shots went wide as she didn't have the range yet. Eva looked on again as he busted Bartley across the face and jumped from the top of the stage onto one of the horses pulling the wagon. Eva kicked at one of the creatures as she cut across the plain, feeling the beasts claws rub ineffectively across the hard leather of her boots. It sent a shiver up her spine, but she forced it down, focusing on the stage, on her father.

She reared the horse hard as she watched Johnson bullet from the horse train. He held a knife in one hand as he slapped the rump of the lead horse with the flat of the blade. His horse veered towards town, while the other three horses bolted in a panic, the severed ends of the bridal and reins flopping behind the panicked creatures.   The last image she saw was his maniacal smile as he hunched over his mount, as he gave her a jaunty wave. She fired off a shot that went wide, but swung her gun around as she drew up on the slumped figure of Thomas. Two of the herd had advanced close and she fired quickly. She dropped one with her first shot, but it took two to take the second down. Eva slammed her Colt into her holster and leaned over in teh saddle. She grabbed Thomas by his coller and pulled him over. He was clutching his neck and Eva looked in horror as she watched blood spurt sporadically from the wound. His eyes were wide and he'd truned an unnatural shade of white. She didn't have to be a doctor to know that kind of wound was usually fatal. He clutched at the wound, trying to stem the flow of blood. His voice sounded like wet gravel, as he sprayed flecks of blood with each word.


Eva's eyes went wet, and she felt a lump in her throat. She never really liked or respected the damn fool, it was only now, only at the end, that she realized why her father had kept him around all these years. He really did love her. '

Thomas rolled over and pulled out his gun. The herd had drew in close, mere paces away from them now.


He fired at the mob, who had caught the smell of blood on him and surged towards him. Eva spurred her horse, looking away. She couldn't close out the sounds though, the roars and gurgles of the creatures. It wasn't until she heard the empty click of Thomas's gun that she felt the hot tears on her face.

End of Line.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Flash Fiction: Under a Dead Sun: Past Sins

Chapter 42

Dawn had come, or what past for it these days anyway. Cody watched the cold black orb rise from the east and hung his saddlebags over one shoulder. He still held the scatter gun in his free hand as he headed towards the stage. He'd hoped to be able to talk Moore or Eva into him letting ride one of the horses, or worse case, ride double with one of them. He felt a flush of heat as he imagined Eva's tight breeches rubbing against him on the horse and suppressed a smile. He owed that bitch one and she was sure gonna pay for punching him. Still his murder of their friend Rex last night had not endowed him into their good graces and he was consigned to ride with that fat tub of lard Bartley atop the stage. Having a horse would have made things easier, but in the end, it wouldn't matter much.

Eva's plan had him atop the stage to protect it. Ideally he could fire at any of the undead that got to near the horses or the coach, protecting Bartley and the old man, allowing them to focus on moving the old stage with as much speed as possible.  That fossil, Caleb, hadn't liked Eve's intention of riding out in front of the stage with Moore, who'd gone white as a ghost at the mention of it, Her plan was to ride in large circles, drawing some of the monsters away, giving them a clearer path to Desperation. ll him what to do. It wasn't a terrible plan and that gauled Cody almost as much as having to listen to a woman tell him what to do. He grimaced as he approached the coach. There were four horses drawing the stage, and Cody marked the reins and truss in his mind as he passed by. He stashed his knife loose into the top of his boot and threw his bags and the scatter gun onto the roof of the stage before climbing up himself.

This will still work he told himself. He took a small piece of rope he'd stolen from the camp earlier and used that to tie the saddle bags around his shoulders, making sure they were nice and tight and wouldn't fall off. He made sure the flaps were securely shut as well, he didn't want the bag falling off when he made his move. He'd worked too damn hard for this money to fuck it all up now. He laid down on the stage and checked the loads in his twin Colts and the breech of the scatter gun, wrapping his feet through the edge of the railing for support.

Cody watched as Eva saddled her horse, fighting the primal urges that he still hadn't tended to since killing Rex last night. The tight suppleness of her pants, the curve of her chaps over her thighs, the quick glimpse of her cleavage from a button loosened top, all of that set a boil in Cody's gut. He bit his lip and looked west, towards the walls of Desperation and drew a deep breath. He was so close to the route to Old Mexico now, so close, he couldn't screw it all away now for a roll in the hay with some bitch. The rest of the crew mounted up as Cody fought to regain the cold calm that usually came before a heist. He needed to be on guard, he needed to be steady. He needed to be clear. He gently rubbed the pearl hilt of his beloved Colt and felt that calm click into place, a cold, remorseless detachment he'd first discovered long ago. He was ready.

Eva called out the charge and he felt the old stage lurch to life, Bartley spurring the horses on as Eva and Thomas Moore vaulted out ahead. Moore looked less pale today, he'd turned a sickly green shade instead and held that shiny gun so tight his knuckles were the only thing that even remotely resembled his pallor from the night before. The stage lurched down the switchback path of the bluff face,winding towards the bottom. Eva and Moore didn't really burst ahead until about the last quarter of the trail, Eva hollering out first at a breakneck pace. She was the first to fire and Cody looked impressed as she caught one of the monsters square in the head.

The creatures surged after the riders, drawing a large portion of the herd along with them. As Bartley drew the stage off the incline and onto the trail, he whipped the horses into a full on sprint towards Desperation. A few of the creatures got close and Cody could see Bartley flinch as the scatter gun shredded the undead creatures. He calmly reloaded and watched, waiting. It would only be a few moments more moments now. a few more moments until Cody Jarrett showed these people who they'd really been fucking with.

End of Line.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Poetry: After the Fall

Hey all!

Look at this. Two posts, two days! Crazy I know!.....

I really wanted to write some poetry after working on that Dead Sun piece yesterday and before I started working on the next chapter. This poem is sort of a companion piece to the last poem I wrote a few months back, Afterglow. That poem was about making love with someone you love. This poem mines though same fields but comes at it from a different perspective, its more of a poem about a one night stand and what happens when two people don't feel the same way about it. I thought about writing this as a short story, but I really just thought it worked better as a mirror to the other poem I wrote.

Anyway I hope you enjoy the poem. As always I welcome feedback on anything. Thank you for reading.

After the Fall

Strange lips brush my own,

Softest murmurs in dulcet tone.

Unknown hands upon my chest,

Nestled close, to sleep, to rest.

Passion's thrust a faded glow,

As urgency has rut and row.

A passing glance down at the bar,

Led the night so ever far.

And two strangers laugh and drink,

An electric touch as hands do link.

That simple spark leads to flame,

A burning need to which each must tame.

So the the two did lead to bed,

Where passion's lust needs were fed.

Lips and limbs grown, intertwine,

Chased by sweat, love, and cheaper wine.

They gave their bodies to basest needs,

Sex and love were wont to feed.

But now the night has come to pass,

And she feels the haze of liquor grow to pass.

She lay beside this man unknown,

Whom she met one night in roam,

And now she knows not his name,

Fearing last, that walk of shame.

He feels her body start to stir,

The pieces of his mind, a blur.

The night before a faded dream,

But now he wakes, lost in stream.

Yet one clean thought bubbles to rim,

This lovely woman had chosen him.

She mutters words she cannot hear,

Wishing now, she wasn't so near. 

Sliding free of grip and sheet,

Moments soon, her escape complete.

She gathers clothes and is out the door,

As he looks lost, wanting more.

He never saw the girl again,

A memory he could never quite begin.

But she was never far from his thoughts,

This perfect girl his memory has wrought.

Because for one lone night he had it all,

It's just the hardest part of love is after the fall.

End of Line.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Flash Fiction: Under a Dead Sun: Past Sins

Chapter 41

Morgan gripped the reins in his teeth as he loosened the pistol on his belt. Satisfied that it was in easy reach he freed his Winchester and cartridged in the first round. A calm sort of ease had spread through him, the tension of the situation almost melting completely away. Despite the things he had told Ally and the Padre he knew this was most likely a one way trip. There were to many of hells creatures out here and not enough bullets in his gun. Still, if he could hold out long enough, maybe. just maybe little Ally would have a chance. He'd pull every one of the mother fuckers towards him if he could. He nodded to Ally and the preacher and prepared to spur his horse. They were ready. He paused one last time, laying his rifle across his lap. With his hands free he took the tomahawk from his belt and drew a line across his palm. the red blood blended with his dark, tan skin and he traced to trails across his cheeks, like his mother had shown him all those years ago. He clenched his left hand tight to staunch the blood, and picked the rifle back up. Let the bastards smell him coming. Hell wasn't the only thing walking the earth to be feared today.

Just as he spurred his horse a huge clamor across from above them, down the winding trail from the top of the bluff. He craned his head to the right to see a large stage coach, being driven by a heavyset man hell bent on leather. There was another man on the roof of the stage, and two separate horses running in front of it. He could swear, even from this distance, that the lead rider was a woman. Morgan watched as the shuffling masses of undead shambled toward the team, and Morgan knew this may be a better break than he could have hoped for. As much as he was prepared to die, he'd made a promise to get that girl to Desperation. This could be just the distraction he was waiting for.

"Change of plans lass, follow me."

Morgan spurred his horse, keeping the rifle aimed at any of the monsters that drew to near. He heard Ally and the pastor behind him as the hugged the coastline, using the protection of the river on his left as he watched for monsters on the right. In the distance he could see the stage curl around the bottom of the incline and head hard up the road towards the central gates of town. Morgan hoped that he could find one of the side entrances by the river to get in through, but worse case he would have the duo stick to the wall and head towards the center. He didn't allow himself to think what would happen if no one would open the door.

Morgan brought the Winchester to bare and snapped off two quick shots at two errant creatures who had wandered in to close. The sound of gunfire lured another small herd towards them but the group was well past the danger of the creatures before they could pose any real threat. Morgan could taste the sweat in the leather of the reins and his levered the rifle again, snapping off another shot at a lurker emerging from the water on his left. He felt the slather of his horse as it charged along the bank, and the feel of the wood on the butt of the Winchester, his senses flaring out in anticipation. He continued looking left, twisting slightly in the saddle to check on Ally and the pastor. Ally's teeth were gritted as she urged the horse faster, but Morgan could see the tell tale sign of tears at the corners of her eyes. Father Enrico had a detached look, as he thumbed back the hammer of the old pistol. He had one hand on the side saddle mount as he fired. The old gun barked once as one of the undead's head exploded in a mixture of bile and teeth.  Morgan couldn't help but be impressed, for a man of God he sure had the aim of the Devil.

Morgan snapped back to attention as the sounds of new gunfire erupted from his right. He glanced over and watched as the second lead rider of the stage group lurched from his horse, falling in a sickly thump from the fast moving mount. He looked again as the figure atop the stage lashed out with his rifle, catching the driver across the jaw. He watched as the heavy set driver lurched forward in the seat and the other man made a daring leap from the moving stage onto the horse train. After a few moments the train was free from the stage and the lone man took off towards Desperation.He watched as the first rider, the woman, fired shots at him but quickly gave up as she spurred her horse towards her fallen friend.

Morgan looked at the walls of Desperation loomed closely overhead. He saw a few ragged men atop the harbor door lookout and waved to them, pointing to the preacher and the young lady. A clean shaven man in a brown hat and a scraggly older fellow with one eye nodded. He saw the old man drop from sight and a few second later the gates of the harbor door cracked open.  He fired the rifle until the weapon clicked empty, clearing the few stragglers from the area. Several heavily armed men emerged from the door, including the one eyed man, as he reared his horse up short, snapping out his pistol.  Morgan looked back at the woman and the stalled stage, then glanced quickly as Ally pulled her horse up into the doorway. She caught his eye as he looked back and she shook her head no, her eyes heavy with tears as Morgan kicked hard into his horse, heading right towards the thick of the monsters.

Hell rides hard today.

End of Line.