Tale Three – Chapter Four

Now, as both of our viewers will no doubt have noticed that it was been 3 weeks since the last post. This definitely has nothing to do with the fact I forgot to finish my chapter… twice. As I would never do this. You may also think that it’s taken three times as long to write therefore it will be three times as good, right? Wrong. Anyway I feel I’ve already hyped this up as much as I can and you can barely contain your excitement any longer, so here it is. Maybe next week we’ll post on time, who knows!

“I look ridiculous…”

“No, you look great.”

“Why can’t I just wear my clothes?”

“Because I’m trying to make you a little less Columbine and a little more Cumberbatch.”

He’s trying to mould me into a version of himself for his amusement, but I will not be moulded! I will be the sculptor that shapes the world in my own visio – ”

“Now, what are you going to say?”

That is no business of yours… and there’s the slight problem that I have no idea what to say to her.

“I’ll take it by your dumb silence that you haven’t a clue. So, pretend I’m her, what do you want to say to me?”

“…”

“Just say anything.”

“Uhhh…”

“Say something! Anything!”

“Errrr, if you try to repress a sneeze you can burst a blood vessel in your head or neck and die.”

“Maybe a ‘hello’ would have been better.”

“I panicked.”

“Jesus, this is going to be harder than I thought. Just remember to keep it simple, maybe make a comment about the weather or something, get the conversation flowing. So, what is this project about?”

“We have to read The Epic of Gilgamesh and create a modern day parallel.”

“Okay, I don’t know what any of that means. Just remember that anyone you ask, will tell you that all you need to do is be yourself.”

Be myself. Okay, I can do that.

“However, in your case you need to be as far removed from yourself as you possibly can be.”

“Great advice.”

“Happy to help! Now go get her.”

Starbucks. The worst place in the world. I can barely hear myself think over the incessant drone of complaints about the trivialities of life. How I shall love to watch this place go up in flames when I –

“Welcome to Starbucks, what can I get for you?”

“Coffee, please.”

Would you like that a Grande?”

I don’t care.

“And your name?”

“Hades.”

“Huh?”

“Hades!”

Why even ask for my name? You’re going to spell it wrong anyway.

“Coffee for Rabies… Coffee for Rabies.”

Idiots.

“Hi, Hades!”

There she is. Remember, keep it simple. Say hello then talk about the nice weather we’re having…

“Nice hello we’re having.”

Nailed it.

“Ha, so ready to start?”

“Yeah.”

“Whose idea was it to make a modern parallel to an ancient text anyway? Seems like such a silly idea.”

“I dunno.”

*Sigh* “Anyway, where shall we begin?”

Tale Three – Chapter Two

They walk past the window. Scurrying about their pointless lives. Drinking their coffee, complaining about traffic. If only they knew. If only they could possibly fathom what was coming. The glorious rise of my underworld. I will be in command. I will rule them al-

“Excuse me?!”

“Welcome to Olympus Department Store. How can I help you?”

“How much are these shoes?”

“I’ll check for you.”

Look at her standing there. On her cell phone, talking to some ‘friend’.

“No, Scarlet I’m on my way. I just needed to stop off at Olympus. Some weird Goth kid is helping me and he’s totally useless. Probably on drugs or something.”

Not knowing that soon they will both be at the mercy of my illimitable power! They will beg and plead for their meaningless liv-

“Well?”

“$69.99…”

And she was gone. Back into the meat grinder of the world. How long must I wait for my ultimate rise?! My shift nearly over. I can retreat to my sanctum. I can already hear the bark of Cerberus my faithful friend. You shall sit at my side as we plunge humanity into the dark abyss of my underwo-

“Hi, Hades isn’t it?”

Persephone. Beautiful Persephone. She knows my name?

“Um. Hey.”

“You’re in Professor Homer’s Ancient Literature class, right?”

“Yeah.”

“I thought it was you. I’m Persephone but everyone calls me Cora.”

“I know.”

“Great! I was wondering if you could help me? I need a dress for the prom, but I don’t know what to get. All my friends already have their dresses. Aphrodite looks incredible, she’s so full of it.”

Of course I’ll help. I’d do anything for you, I lov-

“Are you going to Prom?”

“Prom is an foolish concept. It shall be done away with when I unleash my rule upon the world.”

“Huh?”

“Nothing, I didn’t say anything. I haven’t decided yet.”

“You should, it’ll be fun. Hey, you’re the guy with the cute brother, right? The one on the swim team.”

Of course she likes Poseidon. They all like Poseidon. Captain of the swim team, washboard abs, tall. It doesn’t matter, when I fulfil my great vision I shall take her for my own and she will be mi-

“Is he single?”

“Er. I don’t know.”

“Probably not, no one that gorgeous ever is. What do you think about this one?”

I am overcome with a crippling longingness, a desperate sadness, a doomy vertigo that poured over me at the sight of her. I must tell her how good she looks in that dress. I must articulate my response to her profound beauty…

“It’s nice.”

“I think I’ll take it. Thanks so much for your help! See you at school”

The end of the day. Finally I can return to my dwelling. Poseidon would have to be the first to go. All his wenches will watch as I-

“Hades! Stop daydreaming and get in the car!”

Manslaughterer – Chapter Five

“Jeffery!” Jeff’s Mum was pouring over the bed clinging to her sons arm.
“How is he?!” she directed her question towards the doctor.
“We’re still doing tests. He’s lucky, it could have been worse.” The doctor who’d come to do his rounds in what he was expecting to be an empty room had been standing there in a constant state of perplexity as he continued “There really shouldn’t be this many peop…” he was cut off by an excessive howl from Jeff’s mother. A man walked from the group up to the bed, Rick assumed it must have been Jeff’s father.
“We’re going to find the bastards that did this to you Jeffery.” there was a noise of agreement from the group of family members standing by the door “bastards” one of the chimed in with.
“Bastards.” said Russell who seemingly just wanted to join in.
“Who are you?” Jeff’s father asked of Russell who sheepishly looked at Rick for help.
“That’s Russell and I’m Rick…” the father looked at Rick then back to Russell who was holding out a cookie the nurse had given him with his coffee.
“Cookie?” he offered. The father, clearly confused accepted the offering and was about to enquire about them further but was interrupted by the Doctor, who was becoming annoyed with the situation.
“I must insist that everyone…” he was once again cut off by another howl from Jeff’s mother who, still leaning over the bed gripping on to her son for grim life seemed to be enjoying all the attention the crowded room was giving her. The father had just noticed the police officer standing uncomfortably in the middle of the room.
“Are there any suspects?”
“I can’t discuss on going investigations”
Russell was squirming in his boots, all the talk of finding the culprit was clearly making him uncomfortable.
“You can’t talk about ongoing investigations.” it was said with an air of sarcasm and was Russell’s attempt to end the discussion, however it only succeeded in drawing attention to himself.
“I’m sorry, who are you?” the father had turned to him again was keen to probe the issue further. Russell gave him a blank look as if to say ‘how have you forgotten?’
“Uh I’m Russell? I just gave you a cookie.”
Rick, who had actually just understood the question butted in.
“We’re Jeff’s friends, when we heard what had happened we came here to make sure he was okay.” he paused as he realised the opportunity for them to make their escape.
“And now we’ve seen that he’s fine…” he looked down at Jeff whose eyes seemed as though they were swimming around his skull and was muttering to himself about how he liked turtles, “we’ll be on our way.”
The two of them squeezed their way through the gaggle of family members and reached the door. They were passing through as Russell turned around and waved.
“Bye, Jeff!” perhaps surprisingly Jeff looked up with a big smile and waved back. The unassuming lack of mental acuteness these two possessed would be endearing if it weren’t so worrying. The police officer had helpfully lost interest in Rick and Russell as he was being hounded by questions from the group that still filled the room.
They made it downstairs, exited the hospital and began a walk, which turned into a run towards the car. Closing the car doors behind them they sat pondering over what had happened.
“Well, then,” chirped Russell cheerfully, “that’s that taken care of”.
“How?”
“He said he wouldn’t say anything.”
“You believe that?”
“Sure.” Russell sat with a smile on his face, he clearly did believe it. Rick wasn’t so credulous, but what else could they do about it now? The events of the last 48 hours swirled around Rick’s head. The apprehension of being caught was starting to dissipate with a lack of sleep, the worry that had plagued him was slowly being replaced with a kind of apathetic lethargy.
“So?” Russell’s question shook Rick from his languid state. The truth was he didn’t know how to answer him, all he knew was that somehow they had to put an end this.

Manslaughterer – Chapter Three

“What the fuck happened?!” shouted Rick.
They had been sitting watching the TV incredulously until Rick jumped up and started pacing up and down the room.
“How can he possibly be alive?” he continued, “he had a hole in his head.”
“Sometimes people survive being shot in the head…” said Russell nonchalantly.
“Shut the fuck up Russell” Rick snapped.
He sat back down and they both sat in silence.
“So, what are we going to do?” Russell finally pipped up.
“He’s going to tell them what happened and we’re screwed” he was becoming incensed, “we can’t let this happen,” he paused as he tried to wrap his head around what was going on, “the News said that he hasn’t said anything else, right? Because he had to be taken to hospital.”
“Maybe he can’t remember what happened on account of serve brain damage.”
“Can’t risk it.” Rick was both envious and irritated at Russell’s apparent calmness at the situation.
“Well, then we have to go to the hospital and convince him not to talk,” Russell put extra emphasis on the word ‘convince’, “he would only need a bit of convincing” again he put the extra emphasis on the word.
“Why are you saying it like that?”
Russell leaned right up to Rick with a wild look in his eye.
“All we need to do is ‘convince’ him.”
“Is this you’re way of saying we go and kill him?”
“Have you got a better idea?”
“No.” he really didn’t.
“Then it’s settled, as soon as it gets dark we go.”

It was dark, they were driving in Ricks car. Again they found themselves sitting without saying a word. Russell turned to him as if he was trying to break an awkward silence
“Remember that time we were shot at?”
“You mean the time last night? Yes I remember.”
“Well, he can place us at the scene of the crime” he started nodding to himself as though he was trying to substantiate what he was about to say, “we’re going to have to convince him too.”
Rick didn’t reply. One thing at a time.

Rick pulled his car up outside the hospital, it was about 11PM and the hospital seemed eerily quiet. They didn’t speak for a moment, Russell was fidgeting uneasily in the passenger seat. Rick’s heart was beating faster than he ever remembered it beating before.
“I’ve been having second thoughts” said Russell turning to him.
“We can’t back out now” Rick was trying to supress a quiver in his voice.
“Maybe, we could bribe him into not talking.”
“Bribe him with what?”
Russell instantly began reaching into his pockets.
“I have $2 and 76 cents, a stick of gum, a library card that expired in March 2008,” he continued rummaging around in his pockets as Rick sighed painfully “oh, and $50… these must be your pants.”
“Somehow I don’t think that’s going to cut it.” said Rick.
“You’re probably right” replied Russell mournfully, “lets get on with it then.”
Russell reached around to the back seat and grabbed some hospital scrubs.
“Remind me again why you have these?” inquired Rick
“Role play.”
“Never mind” he instantly regretted asking.
They changed in the car then strolled through the main entrance trying to act as though they were supposed to be there. Now all they had to do was find him. They headed for the Rehabilitation Unit and began the process of casually peaking through the windows down the corridor trying to spot him.
“Over there” Rick hissed. At the end of the corridor sat a police officer outside of a door.
“That has to be it” he continued, “but how do we get passed him”
“We could bribe him…” said Russell waving the expired library card in his face.
Rick smacked his hand away. Having barely taken their eyes off the police officer he suddenly stood up, stretched out and walked off down the hallway and out of sight. They seized their moment and jolted forwards into a brisk walk, they walked as fast as inconspicuousness would allow. They reached the door, opened it and slid in, locking it behind them and drawing the blinds on the window.
“That was fortunate” quipped Russell.
“Yeah, maybe our luck is finally starting to change”.
They turned their attention to the bed and more specifically the man on the bed, his head was covered in bandages but as they closed in it was obvious it was him. They stood either side of the bed looking down at the man. Russell put his hands down into his scrubs and brought out a hammer. Rick was still annoyed he couldn’t find anything less brutal but a gun would have made too much noise. Russell, who stood opposite Rick had begun to squirm.
“I don’t think I can do it” he whined.
“Yes you can. You killed him once and you can do it again.”
“I can’t.”
Rick was only too aware of the short window of opportunity they had and they didn’t have time for this. He reached over and grabbed the hammer.
“Give it to me, I’ll do it”.
He looked down at the man, took in a long protracted breath. Then he raised the hammer unnecessarily high above his head then closed his eyes, gritted his teeth and had begun to bring the weapon cascading down when Russell stopped him.
“Wait!”
“What?!” Rick stood there hammer still stretched out, staring at Russell.
“Don’t you think we should say something first.”
Rick stood with his mouth wide open.
“Say what?!”
“You know, some nice words before we send him on his way.”
Rick was astounded by how Russell’s mind works. All he knew was that knowing Russell, arguing with it would take longer that going along with it.
“What was his name?” he asked.
“Jeff.”
“Jeff the drug dealer?”
Russell nodded in the affirmative.
“What was his last name?”
“I was working under the assumption he only had one name.”
“Who the fuck only has one name?”
“Cher…”
Rick quickly broke out of a fantasy in which he was beating Russell to death with the hammer. He then began reciting an obituary off the top of his head which mostly consisted of how he didn’t know Jeff in life but he was sure he would have preferred him to the blood stained pain in the arse he’d come to know over the past two days. He ended with a sarcastic “Amen” and waited for Russell to finish his moment of silence.
“That was nice.”
“Now do you mind?” Rick gestured towards the man on the bed
Russell signalled that there would be no more interruptions and Rick once again went about setting himself up for the kill. He raised the hammer high in the air anew and was again getting ready to bring it thundering down. However after not having moved for what must have been about two minutes he was beginning to realise he couldn’t do it.
“Shit.”
“What are we going to do now?”

Manslaughterer – Chapter One

Here is the first chapter of our second story. Look out for the next chapter next Friday!

It was 2 A.M. and Rick was driving his old beat up car down the highway, street lamps intermittently illuminated the inside of the car. Next to him in the passenger seat was Russell, he’d known Russell since he was a child and had also known that at some point Russell would get him into serious trouble. Tonight was that night. In the back of the car, slumped over and covered in a bloody sheet, was a dead body.
It had started two hours ago when he’d gotten a call from Russell who had urgently pleaded with him to come over. Begrudgingly he did, although soon he wished he hadn’t.
“What’s going on?”
“I have a problem, through here.”
He was led into Russell’s living room where sure enough his ‘problem’ lay in a bloody heap against the wall. Rick had somehow managed to remain remarkably calm, he stood staring at the lifeless form with an admitted amount of terror but mostly curiosity. They remained in silence for a time until Russell ran out of the room muttering “I think I’m going to be sick.” Rick was left alone with the lump of former person. He was not surprised that Russell could have gotten himself in such a situation, he was after all completely incorrigible. However that didn’t make the fact it had actually happened any less shocking. Russell had returned and had taken his place next to Rick staring down at the body.
“So?” he inquired.
“So, you have a dead person in your living room.” replied Rick.
Russell drew in a big ponderous breath. “What are we going to do?” he asked.
“We? There is no ‘we’. You are going to call the police.” Rick sounded alarmed that Russell considered him to be a part of this problem.
“I can’t call the police.” Russell stood looking indignant
“Why not?”
“Because they’ll think I did it.” remarked Russell as though it were self evident.
“Why would they think that?”
“Because I did do it!” he said exasperated.
“What even happened?!”
Russell’s original answer of “I may have accidentally shot him in the face.” was not really adequate and he was pressed to recount the full version of what had happened. How the man was a drug dealer who he was trying to score from and how he had taken offence to (an admittedly hilarious) joke about his mother and pulled out a gun. There was then a struggle, he had accidentally pulled the trigger and sent a bullet excavating through the mans skull. He had then called Rick because he didn’t know what else to do and that’s all there was to it.
“You have to help me.” pleaded Russell.
“No, I don’t.” Replied Rick intently.
“After all the things I’ve done for you.” said Russell ruefully.
It was a low blow, trying to guilt him into being an accessory to murder, but he was not wrong. Russell had after all helped him through the toughest periods of his life, but even so, this was a step beyond that. He didn’t know what to do so he simply stood there in silence.
“Are you going to call the police then?” Russell asked mournfully
“No.”
“What then?” interrogated Russell.
“Well I can’t just go home with this shit on my mind,” said Rick anguishing between both sides of his conscience, “I can’t believe I’m going to say this…”
He stood there contemplating in his mind whether he was actually going to say it.
“Yes, damn it I’ll help.”
“Thank you! For a moment I didn’t know what you were going to do.”
“Just get something to wrap him up in and be quite.”
Russell returned with a bed sheet and they wrapped him in it like a mummy. They had decided that their best course of action would be to dump the body in a lake, which lake, they did not know. Russell grabbed the legs and Rick the head and they carried the body outside and towards Rick’s car. It was heavier than Rick was expecting and it slipped from his grasp and clattered onto the floor.
“Careful!” hissed Russell.
“He has a hole in his head, I hardly think he minds.” retorted Rick.
Russell was entrusted with putting the body in the back of the car, Rick sat in the front and started the engine.
“What are you doing?” Asked Rick
“I’m putting him in the back?”
“When I said put it in the back I didn’t mean sit him up and buckle his seat belt!”
“Well, I don’t know. I’ve never done this before.”
“We’re going to need something to weigh him down with,” said Rick contemplatively, “a cinder block maybe… and some rope.”
“Where are we going to find those things?”
“I don’t know, go look.”
“I don’t think they’re readily available items, Rick.”
“Just go look!” Russell scoffed and walked off into the night. “And a shovel,” Rick fiercely whispered, “just in case.”
Russell returned with a ball of string and a brick. “It’s all I could find.” By now Rick was well accustomed to Russell’s incompetence and they decided they’d figure it out on the way. After all they couldn’t sit here for ever.
“So,” asked Russell, “where now?”