Thursday, April 2, 2020

On The Edge of Chaos and Knowing...

I have entered Chaos, my Stroke is Chaos, yes I personify it because it is me and the only way out is knowledge, take note of the word knowledge, knowledge on the edge of or ledge of knowing, we are all always on the edge of knowing, as if knowledge were a chasm we must embark upon to embrace...

I am soul...


I am a planet, the whole sphere of presence in the darkness but not alone, in a space perceived as cold and empty space, I know this to be true, the universe is filled with life throughout, I travel, touch all, guided by existence in all its forms and I am not alone but filled with life, I am a planet among many and one, I am existence...

Saturday, December 7, 2019

The Night John Lennon Died

Image result for images of john lennon

 In my last year of college I worked as a negative film cutter
at a small edit house in a building west of Times Square...321 West 44th St just west of 10th.
In that building were many media companies, one of which was The Record Plant
for some time, ending on this date 37 years ago,
he was working on his latest album at the record plant on the first floor...
almost every morning, as we entered the building together, we wished each other a good day,
one of us always holding the door for the other...
almost every evening, we left the building together,
always wishing each other a good evening, always the black limo waiting for him...


He was John Lennon...
except on this night 38 years ago, after wishing him well, I arrived home,
turned on Monday Night Football to hear Howard Cosell announce that 
ohn Lennon had just been shot and killed...
to this day I still cry...

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Making Common Sense of God, Jesus and The Bible

Making Common Sense of God, Jesus and The Bible

Superheroes and Supermen don't exist but smart men do… people just didn't use the right words 2000 years ago and people still don't…

Christ was not unique, he was a well spoken homeless man who scared many of his brethren by speaking of God in a personal way not as a superhero, which is how so many saw God back then and still many do…removed from humankind… God is not a person the Universe and back then no one  could understand what the Universe was… Now we can, using science… The "he" Jesus speaks of is a personification of what he could believe and others of humankind understood... We feared much 2000 yrs ago as we still do now especially contesting accepted fact as much as we do now. It's not enough to present fact but you must prove it...

Friday, September 27, 2019

The Screaming Closet

Ralph Pitre
9145570870
ralphpitre@gmail.com


Still you seek where the light is not, patience, for in time I will reach out from the darkest reaches and show you the horrors of the cosmos
  • Unknown

Love as an element of horror, living unknown until the knife stabs from behind…
  • Unknown

Elsa, a Spanish name.
In Spanish, the meaning of the name Elsa is:
Truth.





Elsa
____________________________________________________________
Elsa walked the length of the hall, her steps small and gentle befitting a woman of her advanced age and still the floorboards creaked underfoot as if from a great weight on the worn yellow and red linear patterned carpet.
Reaching the far end where the wall ran perpendicular to the hall, the doors of two side by side guest rooms were left ajar. Elsa looked into the room on the right where a very tall, very pale man, bluish almost, was in the middle of fitting the need sheets tightly around the mattress. He stopped as he felt the weight of her look and nodded to her and she to him. From the left hand room, room number 508, Coltrane's "Offering" called to her, crying it's melodic tenor from scratched vinyl on a turntable beside the bed.
The room was empty but for the muffled sound of the strong wind outside. She stepped in to scan the whole room taking note of the empty wheelchair diagonally across the room by the closet door. Walking across the room to the window with the curtain partially drawn, she looked out. She could see a gnarled tree struggling against the fierce wind and rain as it grew with every body writhing, rising from the ground along its ancient skin drawn forth by thunder and lightning.
Elsa closed the curtain and turned back to see the tall bluish man staring at her from the entry door. She looked at the wheel chair to which she crossed the room to stand at the closet door where she could hear a distant faint sobbing, that quickly became a frantic cry with a terrible shriek that died, to become sobbing again, silence. Resting her head against the door, her initial expression of concern became one of endearment... she waited a moment, exhaled deeply, looking down at the tattoo drawn across the pale underside of her wrist, two forearms clutched by two hands...so little time left.

Clover
____________________________________________________________
Lightning cracks the jet black sky...shattering the pane, setting the soul aflame and the world burns to fuel the fire....
The Clover Grill, a divey bar & restaurant, loud and packed with locals, No'la scored a table by the window for herself, Mat and Davida, her camera crew and associate producers, all their gear piled next to No'la sitting on the broad front window bench; however, she couldn't score the one thing she had been searching for; answers to the Goodbody Mystery. No'la could offer nothing more than a written review of existing Goodbody myth, now decades old…
The smell of an electrical storm... the smell of wet asphalt filled the air, blowing into the grill every time the door opened at the Clover Grill & Bar, on a corner two blocks off the tourist strip out by where the locals lived, it's old brick and worn woodwork kept it's charm while guests enjoyed food, drink, company and an old record player with a shelf stacked with vinyl, new and old, jazz, stomp and zydeco of this small popular eatery on the edge of town... No'la had eaten very little of her plate of red beans and rice letting it become lumpy paste that she randomly reconfigured with her fork...the hickory coffee, served in a demitasse was still hot enough to allow bubbles to dance randomly building a tiny sculpture from which nothing could be gleaned.

Lost and numb, the lack of accomplishment that had become an unwelcome friend for life, reminded her of the day her father was arrested. No'la recalled what she perceived as a happy life in those days when her father never shunned her, coming home from work and she would jump on his lap and ask about the tattoo on his arm under his short sleeve above the elbow; a black & white drawing, a thick chain winding around his back, where a golden ankh hung to end in a hole drawn around his vaccination mark.
No’la was a good investigative journalist at the time her father was arrested. She had been looking into reports that several precincts colluded to extort money from local businesses and move drugs when eventually it all led to a series of arrests that included her father. A bad cop, perpetuating a family belief that you're never good enough; it wasn't enough to be poor, but to have a thug cop for a father.... No'la was pulled off the story. No'la wasn't guilty she just knew someone who was and that was enough...

Davida stared at No'la as she grabbed her phone and left the table... I'll be right back she said...Damn him...No'la had been waiting for his call..Clyph, their boss, their lousy producer in NYC, a hard ass exploiting No'la's talents and her weaknesses cause like the rest of us he can’t get passed his own weaknesses and rides the coattails of another’s success.
Davida had met No'la several years ago soon after No'la had graduated from school... Davida had found herself with no real focus on her studies and the career she announced to family, she would pursue... but there she was lost among a throng of pursuers, all running from what they perceived as commitments to their life choices...the shining light crossing the field with a focus on her goals was No'la, who seems to know what she wanted and how to pursue it…
And there was Mat, his mother named him Matador...Born in the bayou as much a modern child slave as could be, he escaped without ever reporting the kidnapping, the abuse and raised himself, hit the military hard then exposed himself to a world documenting the madness he told no one about but was born into… Mat was their warrior, clearly aware of No'la's issues and No'la and Davida as a loving but estranged couple, Mat kept the trio strong and in gear. With him, once he knew their goal he was their guide, their bodyguard and the only rock steady focus they could trust. Mat spoke little of his past; special task tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. In his stories, and there were many, bits of those tours laced the other stories, constant chatter about so much paranormal that he had taken to heart after losing the stability he thought he had as a warrior. Ghosts, monsters, aliens and all things paranormal gave his life purpose, purpose he ignored.
Getting up from the table, away from the noise and the music stomping from the old turntable spinning from an upper shelf behind the bar, No'la walked outside the Clover Grill and stood beside the door, under the recessed canopy avoiding the rain. Phone cradled to speak into she spoke "Hey, what's up? Clyph..." and the rain had finally started after all its blustering threats, it was a light rain, a drizzle really, normal for this time of year if it stayed light, which it wouldn't if the angry sky above had anything to say about it...
“No nothing yet”...she told him
"We're getting something to eat now and still no hotel yet...we've called all over.... And now this storm is approaching..."
Skin glistened from sweat and rain, a small protest march started to swell outside of the Clover Grill... Police and mob presence swarmed to bloody each other good, faces broken, blood splattered with a hit of the police club, the crash of a Colt 45 people watched, flooding the street craning their heads from inside the Clover to see what little they could…
The violence swarmed like red rain spilt...black, brown and white bodies flailing, the violence, torrential blood and rain splattered the asphalt black...a black protester stepped from the mass and alone confronted a cop accusing him of killing his brother...
"I can't talk now Clyph it's getting violent out here...the march that's turning into a riot...It's okay, no nothing at all on this Mr Goodbody, and nothing yet on May...she's the only victim anybody knows about... no one knew where she went after leaving the hospital...and she’s the mystery, her talk about Mr. Goodbody who seems to have imprisoned her, perhaps tortured her and why she went back to him...it is a mystery, you talk to people who deny its importance but it’s obvious they have knowledge and are reluctant to talk about it."
Listening to Clyph as he spoke...overwhelming frustration...
"It's been awhile there aren't many left who know the story, I interviewed who I could, no the lead detective is dead, I spoke with his partner...the partner was a woman who disappeared, maybe..."
“Okay, okay fine I'll get you an updated file when we're out of here.”

A black man, over-dressed tatters of rags and clothes, stood aside of the march beside an overflowing garbage container preaching his brand.. looking at the throng, tears filled his eyes...the anger he could see on them, in their hearts, had gone the violence spent...

Mat steps out to stand beside No’la, as if being there would protect her from the protest that hit close to home, prompted action from him but No'la stops him, Mat no...He glared across at the cops holding a protester down on his knees...the anger throbbing fuel on fire, coursing through him until it burst. The cop feeling Mat's glare, smiles and throws a vicious punch at the protester...Mat looked to No'la, you okay? Yeah let's get inside...he said.
Just then the angry cop reared back holding the club, and swung...burst...and there was more...

“Life is not without the comfort of pain…”, No'la once said in her sleep...she couldn't recall any dream or nightmare and Davida could never tell if it was No'la actually saying those words. Do you think anybody will ever understood you, No'la was once asked?
“Why should they?”
No'la preferred being alone, no matter how lonely she might feel or how much she loved another, her world was solely her own and she preferred it that way, alone... relationships were invasive, a distraction. Once, at a channel-party formal dinner to pitch ideas for television shows, in front of hundreds of other guests during a brutal argument, No'la called relationships cancerous, malignant viral entities that clouded one's thoughts, stopped the heart. Everyone thought she was pitching a show and gave her a standing ovation as she walked out of the ballroom.
Davida, No'la's best friend and lover, her co-producer and an uber-exuberant No'la supporter since their days at The News Agency was so enamored by her, she was the guardian angel in No'la's life. Always there, she became as alone and isolated as No'la. Without doubt, Davida believed No'la would come back from her self imposed exile, from life as a significant writing talent to currently making what she called pornographic documentaries about the paranormal. No'la became obsessed with the stories, the research, the culture of believers in all things out of this world who seemed as alone as No'la, strung out on isolation she both loved and hated...

And it burned, No'la could smell it, as always, something burning that she couldn't identify, always there... burning.
Twenty years ago...

One would hope the hate she had for her father would have died with him, but that hate was greater as a result of what he took from her, something of hers died and she didn't know what, a lost soul in a cemetery, blank headstones everywhere and nowhere an answer...
Father was mother's god. Beyond love her dreams saw divinity in him and like him she believed he had been possessed by demons she fought. Both broken one shattered completely. Never finding fault in themselves they believed father's troubles was the work of demons and their belief in God was overwhelming. The demons worked overtime on father until the day he died. Mother was terrified of suicide because it was a sin instead she chose a long and drawn out method of penance suicide... it was a matter of time after finding a job, doing work where death was inevitable...and it worked.
In all of this, No'la had been left alone never part of the family, part of their madness, no one seemed to care. She watched as Mother fought their demons and father submitted... she could never understand their logic and never knew if dying by their own hand or at the hands of others was victory or defeat. Either way, those same demons seemed to follow her after they were done with father..
No'la's father would eventually put a gun in his mouth, waiting for a police escort to join the guards who lived in the apartment with them he held a cup of coffee he fired the shot seconds after taking a large gulp...as if thrown from a bucket the blood splattered across the wall mixing with the less viscous coffee, draping a slow black and red curtain...
Over the years the Goodbody Mystery passed from real life mystery to paranormal myth; is there a difference? The archives relate the following: in 1977 an unidentified woman was found roaming the streets by a 12 year old boy who said that she was looking for a place she escaped from but wanted to go back to, that didn't make any sense but... "I'm trying to find Mr. Goodbody, he's in a red house, can you help me find him?" Who was Mr. Goodbody? No one ever found out. Naked and wet in the city's perennial rain storms in a desperate search for Mr Goodbody, she spoke of the big red house, with a water pump in the yard and a "screaming" closet somewhere inside the house. Tim, the 12 year old boy who found her didn't understand and convinced her to stay where she was, out of the rain at a bus shelter while he went to find police. The police had taken the woman to the hospital where she was treated for exposure, a variety of still broken and badly set bones, bruises, festering wounds and so on... She was kept under observation by a psychologist who used a hypnotist, a blind hypnotist, go figure, to discover that her name was May, born locally in 1952, she was kept inside of a room with several other women in various states of tortured existence when she escaped by slipping into what she called the death bin with two other bodies and did so before Mr Goodbody could catch her. It was apparent that she had been kidnapped, held prisoner and tortured, with other girls some still alive and some dead..the name Goodbody wasn't much to go on and ultimately she really didn't know where she was kept.

“This guy often thought of killing himself I would too if I believed I was possessed for over 20 years…”
“What?”
Davida and Mat sat across from No'la, Mat reading out loud from a pulp conspiracy magazine called The Truth, Deal With It! Davida barely listened to Mat's revelations instead she nursed her cup of coffee deep in thought about No'la and her persistent issues...
“Yeah, over 20 years.”
“What are you guys talking about?”
“Mat found a story about a guy possessed by a demon for 20 years…”
“He's been possessed by a demon for...?”
“It's not a demon, I never said demon.”
“A politician?”

Mandy their storytelling waitress approached the table with a fresh pour of coffee listened and wondered.

“Mandy, have you ever heard of the Goodbody Mystery?”
“You talking about that girl who was found walking the streets here in the rain, somewhere 'bout here in this neighborhood I think…”
“Yes it was…”
“Not really...word was she up and took off, disappeared.”
“She did…”
“I saw your video equipment...you doing a TV show about it…”
“Just a segment... a piece…”
“I think the whole thing was a hoax anyway, not really a big deal that I know of.”

Mandy rushed off.

Mat continued...
“Well, but then he does call it a demon later on in the article but a benign demon.”
“What the hell is a benign demon, a demon without horns?”
“I don't know, that's what the report says…”
“Well he's accepted the possession for 20 years…”
“Well that sounds dumb and boring.”
“I think it deserves some consideration. Not everything we cover has to be scary paranormal.”
“Well it's no fun if it's not scary. Anyway, this is wasting time and we need to find a place to sleep tonight…”

Outside, the storm was growing and still a number of people were out despite the effort by police to clear the crowd, No'la noticed a petite elderly black woman standing in among a crowd waiting at the corner and staring at No'la. The light changed and the crowd rushed to cross the street as the elderly woman entered the Clover Grill. No'la noticed a barely visible tattoo on the woman's arm, peeking out from the sleeve of her jacket as she passed their table, she raised her arm to close the umbrella. No'la looked in through the window to spy Davida and motioned toward the old lady then followed her into the Clover. The elderly tattooed woman walked straight back to the far end of the bar.
No'la rushed to sit grabbing her sack she shuffled through some of her papers, finding the right one...just as Mandy walked up from behind her
The tattoo...!
“You done honey?” asked Mandy.
“Yes, I am, except more coffee please actually. Sure, you know if you need a place to stay for tonight that woman who just walked in runs a small place near the hospital just a couple of blocks away, mostly outpatient guests from the hospital nearby, but she might be able to help, her names Elsa. She just walked in and sat at the end of the bar.”
“That little old lady with the tattoo...?”
“Yes…” Mandy rushes off for the coffee pot...
Across and along the length of the bar, through the growing crowd they watched Elsa, wearing a light rain coat over a heavier jacket over a lighthouse dress with a busy floral pattern...seated on a far end bar stool she was happily ordering from a friendly and smiling bartender.
Mandy returned with a coffee pot and…”Yeah...that ain't no tattoo, ya know not for decoration at least.”
“Then what is it for?”
“Branding, that's a tattoo you get when you're, entitled to someone....”
“Entitled?”
“Branding used to be what a slave owner used when he wanted to mark you as his so that everybody understood....”
“She wasn't a....”
“No, she's too young to have been a slave in this country, but she did belong to someone…”
“How do you know?”
“I just know, you hear things…”
And Mandy rushes off again…
No'la couldn't see the tattoo but she was sure Mandy had one…
“Creepy…”
“I agree.”
“We missing something?”
“Tell me about it.”
A quick sip of hot coffee and No'la was off
“Going to the bathroom...be right back.”
No'la suddenly turned up the flame...the flame Clyph tried to stifle suddenly alight.
Even a few tourists made it this far off the beaten path mingling with the locals at the bar and the tables covered in food and drink. The bathroom, the only bathroom was towards the back hall that led to the kitchen and the back patio. A woman stood in line ahead of her. The turntable pounded out some local Cajun stomp. No'la stood in line behind the woman just behind Elsa. She stared at the bit of tattoo peeking out from under her sleeve, painted on the underside of her arm just above the wrist. She could overhear the conversation she was having with the bartender, the state of business at the hotel, her work with the woman’s health board and how they're leading the effort to help women in town why the grill sold and advertised to attract tourists but the grill needed the business. No'la wondered if she knew the story of May and the Goodbody mystery.
No'la glances down the bar to see Mandy nod to acknowledge where Elsa is seated
The bartender approached with Elsa's food order as the bathroom became vacant and No'la quickly leaned into Elsa calling her May?
“Excuse me?” Annoyed.
“Oh my, I'm so sorry, it's…”
“Elsa, yes, can I help you…”
No'la was surprised...
The tattoo was...of two arms embracing, wrist over wrist. “I love your tattoo, I noticed it as you entered.”
Embarrassed, Elsa pulls back on her sleeve, trying to hide the tattoo.
“A betrothal tattoo, something i did for my husband long ago when he was alive. Silly at the time but now he's always sort of with me.”
Two arms embrace, forearm over forearm though one seemed to be pulling, the dominant arm pressing the other and creating shadows where the pressure would be...
“Can I help you with anything?”
“Sorry, my colleagues and I are looking for a place to stay the night and Mandy the waitress mentioned you might be able to help...that you run a hotel or inn nearby?”
“I do, just a couple of blocks from here, you stuck in town?”
“Yes the storm has shut the airport.”
“You call around?”
“Yes…”
“I have a couple of rooms, Here's the address,” she said while writing it on a bar napkin, Just head on over, it isn't far from here. I'll meet you there and so you know, it's mostly an outpatient hotel serving the hospital across the street.”
“That's fine, anyplace clean will do…”
“It is...better hurry...bad rains coming.”
Elsa walked off
“Thank you, Elsa.”
Elsa waved back as she left the grill and put her rain hood on...
No'la turned back for the bathroom just as someone else went in. I can hold it and she hurried back to the table.

No'la hustled back to the table....
“Guys, lets go. We have someplace to stay…”
“Awesome, the old lady?”....Mat & Davida, follow No'la out the door… “Yeah.”




Attention…
___________________________________________________________________
No'la stepped out of the Clover bar, holding the door open as Davida and Mat followed. She looked up to the sky, into the rain, the drops blinding then washing away a vale that revealed a night sky without a star. A sudden instance of vertigo overwhelmed her, drawing her eyes up to the abyss then letting go, she began to collapse, Mat caught her from behind...held her for moment asking, "Coming?"
Continuing her thought while Mat helped her stand still, "I called her May"...
“What?”
“I called Elsa, May.”
“The old lady?”
“Yes…”
“Slip of the tongue it was…”
“Perhaps...the tattoo, I'd forgotten that May had a tattoo until the moment I noticed Elsa had one as well...the same one in the same place she described…”
“Elsa might be the right age at this point but was it the same tattoo?”
“The description was similar except Elsa's tattoo was faded...which would make sense…”

They crossed the street looking at the debris the protesters and authorities had left strewn throughout the asphalt, smeared in blood, broken signs...the war fought, the remains of the loser littered the street...
They felt like fish underwater as the rain poured down, heavy and thick to fill the already moist air...they lost sight of Elsa, looking down Dumaine, dark and nothing at first but then there she was, tiny Elsa looking even smaller now that she had walked more than a long block ahead... how did she get that far so fast?...then she turned right around the corner, into a yard?
No'la couldn't see that any street lamps were on along Dumaine. The homes, dark perhaps empty, shuttered but more likely home to squatters hiding in plain sight...didn't help to light the darkness to see any life...
No'la turned to look down Dumaine at the well lit streets they were leaving behind. "I think someone's following us..."
Mat turned, peered into the darkness and yelled to the tall rotund stranger, a man, alone, dark, homeless, pushing a junk filled shopping cart silhouetted against the street lights... he stopped and called to them.
"Li se prèske tan, tout bèl pouvwa wè ou, vle ou, men se chemen an ou pran ki te ranpli avèk vicieux a, unblessed a, ki pa gen okenn chemen men sa ki w ap atire ... jwenn wout ou ... pa leur. ..turn tounen ... tout bèl pouvwa a wè ou menm ak ou gade lwen, avèg bay verite a …”
To Mat she asked, “What's he saying?”
Something like, "It is almost time, glory sees you, wants you, but the path you take is filled with the wanton, the unblessed, who have no path but that which you are attracted to...find your way...not theirs...turn back...the glory sees you and you look away, blind to the truth..."
"On va bien vieux! Merci pour la bénédiction ..."Said Mat, walking back on his heels.”
“Ce n'est pas une bénédiction mais un avertissement.”
“Oke di ou mèsi de tout fason ... men mwen panse ke nou ka nwaye si anyen.”

No'la paused in the rain as the others pass and recalls having once heard her father speak similar words on his worst days...but about himself...

The homeless man walked up from behind No'la, lightly grabbing her shoulder to say something that only she could hear but couldn't understand...
"Madame, fènwa a ap tann ou, pa pran lòt moun yo ... ale pou kont li."
Mat rushes back to take her away...and she slipped easily from the homeless man's hand resting on her shoulder.
No'la, Davida and Mat moved on down the block...looking back, No'la suddenly felt great concern, looking for the homeless man who was know gone...
A struggling fatherless family, a mother and two children whose gender weren't apparent cowered, shielded from the torrent under a willow tree just ahead down the block, across the street from an old brick house.
The family stared at No'la and the group as they crossed the street... "This is it, this is where she turned..." she turned to look at every one...
“This is the home May described…”
“Elsa's?”
“May's....”
“You sure?”
“Yes…”
No'la stepped sideways, staring at the house May described...a feeling of great accomplishment...she almost stood in the middle of the street, watched by the homeless family and Mat and Davida all enthralled by No'la's amazement…
“It was the hotel May had escaped from…
“L'attente…”
“The what?” No’la said.
“French for “The Waiting.”
“Really,” said No’la. “Waiting for what…”
“Below the hotel name it says “L'endroit pour ceux qui attendent, ‘The place for those in waiting.’”
“But, waiting for what?
“Décès,” Mat turned to look at the others, “Death, I suspect...”
No'la slowly circled the house, stepping side by side the mansion, asylum and hotel as it stood now, a place for the infirm and questionable, waiting…
“Look around the house,” No’la said. “look for the water pump she described, a fire engine red water pump.”

The District Commander had at first come to meet No’la over a drink at the hotel they first staying…”There are many secrets to keep, in my lifetime and this is one of them. I have to be careful, you understand?”
“Yes, I do sir...so there is a story?”
“There’s always a story, the trick is to verify it as more than the myth it has become.”
“I don’t understand, sir.”
“A long time ago, at that time I wasn’t the District Commander, just a captain…  I assigned a very good detective to what seemed… a waste of time…” Pausing he looked away, she waited as the pause lengthened….but she waited…” Timothée, a fine detective...would still be if…let me take you to him, I have his permission…
“Ok,” she said.
“I have a car waiting outside...”
It quickly became obvious that the drive, by the Commander himself was longer than it had to be, the house kept in mystery...the car finally stopped in front of a small bungalow that had suffered water damage from the floods. 
He turned to her seated in the back behind black steel mesh…”Go in, he’s expecting you.”
“Thank you Commander…”
“Be quick, we’re not young men…”
No’la shuffled across the back seat to get out and rushed through the rain, to the door… it was unlocked. The Commander, seated in the front, looked through the rain....
A voice greeted her, “You are No’la?”, as she stood inside the door, “I am.”
“Take the chair beside you,” he said softly, as if he were tired of talking and what was left were weak streams of air. She sat, without a greeting…she could barely see where the detective was seated though she could tell he was across from her hidden in the shadows cast throughout a dark house from weak exterior light.
“... I found May exactly where the boy said she would be a large red brick house with a big yard and a manual water pump in a side yard. I stood out front and felt as if there was someone at a window, watching, but I wasn’t sure.” 
“You saw the house?” 
“Well that's where I first found her, right in front. Then I rushed her off to find my car and took her to the hospital. The rest of the team could never find the house, I could never find the house again…” 

Across the street from the hotel where Elsa disappeared into, a family watched as No'la and the crew climbed the stoop to the hotel steps.
Of dark and dirty red brick the house was built, windows dark and stained, the art vague from a yellow film of uncleanliness; the roof covered in dirty unkempt black roof shingles gave the old edifice the feel of a tired church. Likewise a wall extended away from the front to surround the property throughout, the house angled uncomfortably suggesting that nothing made sense; something was wrong. The building at odds with the quaint style of the rest of town but for the front doors; French, unwashed stained glass covered in a wrought iron design that extended into the wood frame at the top of the front stone steps rising a few feet above the ground. 
Mat looked back across the street at the homeless family who were likewise staring, back across...The mother, weighed down by bags and the weight she carried but more so grief evident on her face...three children surrounding her holding their own beside her, wanting both her strength and protect her.
Mat approached the brick wall from one side of the stoop that hid the back and side of the building. Balancing himself along a wrought iron runner he looked into the dark yard, trashed with high grass, branches fallen from trees deep in the waste he could vaguely see a very thick mass, perhaps a tree, quivering in the play of light and shadow...

“Pa ale nan…” mother said while giving the Sign of the Cross... The family watched them enter the house one by one. No’la hesitated a moment, taking note of the family then disappear into the house, Mat responds to their silent fear, looking back...they watch him walk away with concern, his countenance with the inevitable...
“Dieu connaît-il leur sort, maman?”
“Bien sûr, Dieu donne des conseils, mais l'humanité agit toujours sa propre volonté …”
l'arbre

Roots, as faces and arms writhe in pain under the skin of a tree become tentacles struggling to rise from the earth…
It would begin again in its ancient fashion…
The horror of the cosmos… ___________________________________________________________________
The tree, an octopus and above and below ground and Goodbody rises from it as the monster...



Check in
Settle in rooms
No'la turns in early.
Energetic Davida can't sleep and so looks to Mat for conversation while he sorts equipment and both profess their love for No'la but laugh about it being a lost love.
Davida goes to sit by fire
Tries to chat with mute Anton
Greeted by Elsa who sits with her and they pass a joint.
Talk history of the building the original owner who built it.
Elsa admits being May.








L’auberge d’attendre
___________________________________________________________________
A white mist reached in from the storm outside and embraced them, soft and deceptive, like the sound you hear in the middle of the night after a heavy snow has fallen, collected from all their lives thrust upon them, big bang and a rush to comprehend what they could see and couldn't… The storm winds retreated as the entry doors closed quickly after a short contested pause, a sudden overwhelming vacuum ...the stench of damp air dissipated quickly along with the shrilling wind escaping through cracks in the door as they slammed shut. 
A final breath…
Turning from the doors to look forward Mat at the key, they surveyed the room, alert to its strangeness...and they found themselves standing in the shape of a triad, as if but without intent but an innate need to protect one another. The room silent but for the constant tapping sound of drops of rain staining the carpet around... The inside different from the expected local style but somewhat embellished to present a regal decor, worn, ancient...and alive! The walls, wooden visibly parched, seemed to grow from the floor, a room without edges or visible corners...where the walls, the floor started or ended was not evident.
They stood in what seemed to be the entrance of a small house whose struggled to be the foyer of a small plantation home but was really a small hotel lobby. Looking up, a giant wooden ceiling fan slowly rotating its bamboo screened blades, radiating comfortable warm air throughout the space, not the brittle cold air pouring down with the rain outside…
They stood in the large entry, dripping a storm of their own on to the floor mingling with the leaks already present. The lobby though small relative to the size of the hotel, would lead one to believe it was once a church. The entry was large, ceilings higher than one would expect for such a small hotel trimmed in weathered sculpted wood. The door itself of dark wood carved and beveled in an array of interleaved buttresses. Mauve colored wall paper which opened to the lobby which was in of itself a confection of colored fondant decor with muted and soiled dull green wall paper that peeled at the corners. It was once grand now just large and gaudy, a fanciful chandelier with a slow spinning ceiling fan hanging over a large table covered in old periodicals and magazines centering the room along with a 3-piece modern sofa set completely at odds with the space all facing a large mantled fireplace made of stone old enough to have memory, its glowing irons resting in the embers of an ancient fire. Above the fireplace was mounted a half length portrait of a very intense looking man with much to hide in his hard gaze. His left hand held a hat and his right hand bent at the elbow reaching across the width of his waist to hold his dark jacket closed but not buttoned. His hands, his hands though were soiled as if he had been working in the garden except the dirt was colored red. 
Standing in before the mantle looking down from the portrait was a very tall, gaunt and hairless pale almost blue man with bright red hair man gently poking the firebugs into a swarm then crossing the entry to the registration desk and into the office.
Across the room was a small centered staircase leading guests to their rooms on the split-level second floor. A man, a patient sat in a wheelchair at the second floor landing. Dressed in a dark red suede robe, hooded, hands gloved, eyes shaded and mouth covered in a filtered mask he stared at them a moment from behind his darkened sight then looked away, reacting as Elsa approached from down the second floor hallway...subtly he twitched his head to his right, then slowly centered his head until it twitched to the left, paused then slowly continued his head motion to the left coming to rest. Though one could not see his eyes behind the glasses, you knew he was looking through them No'la and the others.
Music played, from a scratchy vinyl disk somewhere inside the office to the right, set behind a small registration desk upon which lay the guest registry, a bell and assorted papers…
The tall man stepped from the office and up to the registration desk, smirked and bowed his head to them…surprised by the new guests…
“Welcome.” Said Elsa from atop the stairs… ”My apologies, that is Anton, he doesn't speak much and in this wheelchair here is The Captain, one of our long term guests, he can't speak at all, or hear or see.” 
“He must hear,” said Mat.
“He does not,” Elsa shot back.
“He turned his head to you working down the hall, then to us…”
“He can sense us…” She stared at them a moment. “Please make yourself comfortable while I take The Captain back to his room. You can leave your luggage to the side in the waiting area on your right. As she turned away… Anton! Please provide our guests with a selection of drinks and refreshments...let me push the Captain back to his room and I shall return…” and off she was down the hall.
Elsa left a trail of wisdom, a shooting star as she walked away despite the secrets she kept hidden in castles of cold tours d'exil, waiting an exercise in futility, screaming to be free….
Anton motioned for them to sit on the sofa set then disappeared into the office from where he appeared behind sliding doors over an extended bar to reveal a large a well stocked collection of refreshments…
“That sounds like a great idea,” Davida noted, stood and ordered…
“Whiskey please, Anton?”
He nodded, reached back behind him then held out over the bar to display a bottle of MaCallan 12 to which she nodded admirably and said “neat please.”
“So you don’t speak much Anton?” Davida asked Anton...he nodded.
No’la stood before the table at the center of the room looking up at the the painting over the mantle of the fireplace, the fire raged….the painting, very old, that of a man perhaps in his forties, dressed formally in black and seated on a cushioned wooden chair looking off as if distracted...by what, No’la wondered.
“My husband”, said Elsa as she stepped down the stairs. “From oh so long ago...a very handsome man who really didn’t have his soul in order...he died a long time ago in a terrible state”...
“Let's get you three into your rooms, forget the formality of signing in, it’s late”...Pointing at Davida and Mat “I have two rooms upstairs I can put you in right away and you are?”
“I’m Davida.”
“And I’m Mat.”
“Anton can escort you both to those rooms…”
“I think we’d like to be near each other,” said Mat as he approached. “Maybe Davida and No’la could sleep in the same room?”
“There’s only one bed in each room and I have such a nice little room at the end of the lower level,” looking at No’la.
“No rollaways?”
“No,” Elsa said to Mat then turned to No’la, “I think you'll like the room, you seem like someone who wants to be alone...and if I'm right this room is perfect for you… It's not a guest room but part of the employee living quarters where Anton and I live. It's a small room but cozy, warm and out of the way, a private bed and of course its own Victrola...it's yours for the evening if you like...it's down here toward the back the others are upstairs, let me have Anton escort the others to their rooms and May...uh No’la can come with me…sorry, we both seemed to have used the same name and made the same mistake…”
To Elsa, “No worries.”
“Actually, I think that would be nice,” said No’la. Looking at the others, “I’ll be fine…”
Davida and Mat stared back, “I’m sure,” said Davida.
“Ok, fine,” said Mat. “I'll take the gear up with me and charge it all in the room…I assume the rooms do have outlets,” looking across at the Elsa.
“They do…”
Grabbing their gear and personal bags for them quickly before they could, Anton crossed the living room and led Mat and Davida upstairs and down the long hall to their rooms at the end  as No'la waited for Elsa in the lobby.
“No’la, I have not eaten anything and still my meal from the Clover sits on the counter in the office, liver, do you like liver?”
“No, I don’t. I don’t anyone who likes liver.”
“Though it is an acquired taste especially seasoned raw as I like it. Perhaps you might try it if you never have. ”
“Some other time perhaps.”
Elsa looked, “Perhaps,” she smiled. “Let me get the bag and we’ll walk down the hall below.” She motioned to the flight of stairs leading to the lower level. “Our rooms are at the end, I can catch up.”
Elsa hurried into the office.
No’la turned toward the downward stairs, holding her satchel over the shoulder and without any doubt stepped down the stairs and into the dimly lit hallway. Doors on either side along the stretch were silent, unoccupied or not, she reached the end and looked at two rooms adjacent. Approaching the room to the left she put her hand around scarred brass door knob…
“That’s yours,” said Elsa.
“You were quick,” No’la said looking back at Elsa who stood inches behind.
“I was. Turn the knob.”
She never heard Elsa actually walking…
No’la opened the door and stepped in…

Two rooms side by side, the entry doors at opposite ends hugging the corners of the hall at the far end of the building.

Davida found it useless to even ask the mute any questions since he was only good for nodding his head and carrying bags around.

Davida hears weird sounds as she walks down the basement hall to No'la's room...




The play between the three chapters...The struggle to know in Davida, the struggle to protect in Mat and the struggle to survive in Nola.

Mat drinks alone in his room then hides the flask as Davida knocks and rudely enters without being invited into the room. He's still sorting and labeling the tapes from the day after packing the gear they'll leave the city with tomorrow if they can catch a flight out.

“I'll see if I can get a flight to Toronto…”
Mat does intense push ups…
Planking...full planking
Davida stands with her back against the door turning her head away as if Mat couldn't see tears had stained her cheeks, her eyes still moist.
“What's up?”
“I don't know...she threw me out of the room.
“How could she? You're sleeping in the same room?”
“Well not really, she just wouldn't come out and have a drink. Wouldn't talk, she wanted to be quiet, go through her notes and meditate...Maybe she's tired, you know, of work, this work...of me?

“I don't think it's you...you know her, she's overwhelmed by the story, people, you know how she gets, she needs a lot of alone time. Funny how she and I love being alone more than with people, more so her and you miss extrovert get stuck with us…

It was really just a drink..
Expectation is just a dagger to the heart…
Mat pulls out his secret flask and offers Davida a shot...she does
I know but I'm sorry, I'm beat I got a few more things to do and then I'm in the sack.
The two of us are in love with her and she wants neither of us…
I told you, it's not us, it's her…
I know...it's always her...Except that I'm afraid that she she sees me as expendable and I think I am
Aren't we all, said Mat
I think I'm going upfront and taste the liquor on the cart…
You do that...have a good night I'll see you in the morning...get some sleep, we have a plane to catch in the morning…
Ok...





In Her Room.... 
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“I have a room just for you... I think you'll like the room, you always seemed like someone who wants to be alone...and if I'm right this room is perfect for you…”
“Always?”

“It's not a guest room but it's part of the employee living quarters where Anton and I live. It's a small room but cozy, warm and out of the way, a private bed and of course its own Victrola...it's yours for the evening if you like...it's down here toward the back the others are upstairs, let me have Anton escort the others to your rooms and you can come with me…”

Anton escorts Mat and Davida to their rooms at the end of the long hall as No'la waits for Elsa in the lobby with Anton standing by. Two rooms side by side, the entry doors at opposite ends hugging the corners of the hall.

Davida hears weird sounds as she walks down the basement hall to No'la's room...

It certainly felt perfect to No'la, ... she couldn't explain why...the room was immediately comfortable and felt as if this room was here, forever hers, until she found it...the room she had as a child and would hide from the world and then lost the day her father fell...

“And here is the closet, the painted closet. The old man who designed and built the hotel went crazy referring to the closet, said that it was calling to him..he's the one who painted the walls...he always went into the closet to answer its calls and would end up traumatized and finally reappear from the closet and each time a new pristine series of murals appeared until he died in the closet...it seemed to become some kind of ritual for him. He was a doctor in some town not too far from here, of mixed race, I don't what kind of doctoring he did nor his mixed heritage though I know he built this place, lived in it and seemed to consume him…The old man's story is told in a child's diary once found in the closet…”

Before it all, the scream from the closet...distant, almost unnoticeable she's not sure if she can even hear it...but it happens several times and louder each time until the haunting begins...

No'la leafed through her notes losing focus while turning each page of white piece of paper covered in text that had become senseless to her. She grabbed the short stack and lay it all on the night stand beside the bed, beside the old turntable. She looked through the small stack of vinyl record albums thinking she might play one then saw she did...a Robert Johnson record, the cover more damaged than the record...lifting the arm and placed it on the record spinning on the turntable and through all the scratch and noise, came through Johnson's guitar, then his voice... she sat back on the bed over the covers and against the headboard...and she thought briefly of Robert Johnson's story, having heard why he was such an incredible talent; Satan lit the fire within him to play guitar as no one else did... for the price of his soul. As if talent was a commodity one could trade that is why Robert Johnson was so good..
The confessions are part of Nola's rereading of her notes...



"I remember May, she was near death when they brought her in, one of the nurses saw me in the hall and called me to standby to give her the last rites and I started to but she suddenly opened her eyes and called me Mr. Goodbody, clutching at the lapel of my jacket but quickly relaxed when she realized I wasn't who she thought I was...that's when I noticed her tattoo. Two arms clutched, across the forearms..."


Detective Spinoza, second in the case, she said...."You know, the night she disappeared, the nurses had mentioned that an unknown male visitor was seen in May's room." We never saw any reason to tie the two incidents together...strange though it was, I looked into it and found no footage from the surveillance camera or much else in terms of a description."


Tim escorted Nola through the neighborhood he found May roaming about because he remembered looking for the house "and seeing the house, a large red brick house with a big yard and a manual water pump in a side yard. I stood out front and thought I saw someone at a window. You saw the house? Well that's where I found her right in front. He had given the same description as May except the police ignored him, they didn't think much of what I said at the time but when they heard the same from May they came back to me but I could never find it again....and they never did find the house"


"She spoke of being allowed out of the house, the blind hypnotist said, to fetch water from a manual water pump in a hidden yard while she was chained to the house."

Davida alone with Elsa and Anton
Davida goes to peruse the bar by herself until Anton arrives and Elsa is perched on the on the stair...She finds the corner bar interesting...
Nola gets weird
Davida gets a joint and drugged up at the fireplace.


Mat awakens and wonders, terrified of his dreams he imagines creatures he'd never seen trying to overwhelm them
Mat awakened believing he heard Nola and stepped out to the hall, listened at the door to Nola's room.




The Room - The Haunting
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No’la keeps it a secret, religion and she still recalls her father, still he is the God..
Kneels beside the bed.

No’la awoke, the scratches and clicks of the turning vinyl and an audio bed of white noise and scratches came from the window on the other side of the room. She reached across to lift the needle from the vinyl still turning, slid off the bed and stepped toward the window across. Battered by progressive sheets rain tossed by the winds.

A nightmare, she awakes...
Outside, No'la can see the tree of agony. Looking out the window the she can see the tree, silent lightning flashed to expose the figures sculpted by growth in agony.
The bodies that seemed to rise from the ground, all in agony, climbing the side of the tree, under the bark, in pain...

The room was queer, the bed abreast the opposite corner of the room from the entry door. There was a duplicate door perpendicular to the entry wall ...Elsa said it was the closet and held the door open to present the murals left behind all over the inside of the closet, a single floor lamp in the corner between the doors was the only light in the room

A void, the room she had been assigned, #132, added up to 6 when walking the halls, dirty mauve paisley patterned walls, the room set in a far darkened basement corner of the hotel, numbered out of order, a musty smell ever present seemed to define the perennially tropical state of the hotels air conditioning. Do people who can afford a hotel really choose to stay here? In rooms like this where ambient street light barely reached the windows. One standing lamp lit the whole room from a corner, what little she could see of the room revealed dull colored salmon walls with a vague dizzying pattern too hard to define. The light, more like a night-light, a short cord plugged into a single outlet, darkness bridging the walk back to bed, so she had left the light on. Lights off in the room and you might as well be blind; even a ghost would be afraid to stay here..

Moans and screams from the room...she opens to investigate... a child cries...

One could hear the storm screaming outside pounding on the door, the windows the walls...you look at the two doors on either side of the floor lamp in the corner

Father talks to her from within the closet and she cries with him...
In the closet she sees the mural and the still painting of her father...
No'la lay fetal, tightly wrapped under the covers, looking toward the closet door it began to crack open, a hand slowly pushed it open to reveal her father resting against the inside wall of the closet...she falls to her knees and chastises him for what he's done then she goes to him, crawling across the floor she holds him, he pulls her in as the changes, hands reach out from the door as the mural of a giant red eye painted on it comes to life, hands appear from behind the eye, reach the through the plane to...father's dead body bloodied from the bullet that exploded through his head, crawls from the closet to the foot of No'la's bed

The burning flesh of his wound, finding his body convulsing in small short bursts as tiny flames lapped the air around his wound, blood, fire...

Asleep in the room she is on a lower floor with a high basement window, looking she can see the broken water pump just outside the window and realizes this building is the house and becomes terrified finding the door locked...she awakens from the dream to see the closet door slightly ajar and light coming from it In the dark of a cave carved into the high hedge she could see the red pump hidden away...suddenly a very pale young woman charges across the lawn from the side of the house to collect water from the ground pump and run back to the side of the house... No'la notices the room reflected in the window from behind her the girl has entered the room and crossed the room to enter the closet...No'la runs off to open the entry door but it is locked...somebody is jiggling the doorknob, frightened, No'la runs to hide in the closet





The Closet
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Born from the unimaginable, parted labia walls stretched to reveal an all seeing eye, birthing forth, a black hole emitting the stars of a new universe filling the black abyss of the whole, a natal fetus appears at the center and with the ball explodes in a big bang...

The room is a gateway to a dimension to the unexpected.

The sacrificed women are drawn alive toward the tree where they become one with it...

It is a game...
Let us join and play against each other, climb the tree of agony fastest and maybe you'll win and it is in agony win or lose..

Nola watched the tree as the other woman swam toward it and became part of a writhing and twisted root of arms and legs climbing upon each other, against each to become the tree and escape the agony of the tree and still forever part of the tree...

Elsa is here to moderate, the queen of violence she guides them to replace her position that she has held the longest...no one else has climbed far enough through the roots and instead becomes lost in the roots of agony...

How long has this gone on? Forever...
Where does it begin?
It doesn't begin, it doesn't end...

There are men in the pool of blood joining the women to struggle up the tree of agony, they are no stronger or weaker than any of the others, the pain is equal...

A contest is had with the women. Goodbody must choose the one who will grace the throne then choses and bans the others to suffer on the tree of agony...

No'la sees the chapel morph, the room is alive, constantly changing breathing as if they are inside the belly of the beast, the buttresses, ribs that flex, the ceiling breathes...

No'la realized he was the patient in the wheelchair, Mr Gorzapona...

Goodbody is very tall very old very strong... without losing balance, without age The Monster squatted down to No'la's face laid on the floor close up she could see that in his eyes was nothing but a nightmarish abyss... his mouth missing, he spoke... The voice appeared in her mind, the voice of a very husky woman, a masculine woman ancient it seemed, “I am ancient without age, how much he would enjoy her…”

The pale hand of the monster clutched No'la's forearm the tattoo had come to life.

A tortured and blind woman crawling on a treadmill.

Music plays from vinyl on a turntable up against the wall. The Voyager 1 Golden record...

Goodbody is blue skinned, much bluer than Anton's shade.

Goodbody is blind, his eyes gone, yet he can still sense, built ripped like a weight lifter but very thin and a massive “y”-shaped incision across his torso, a suture scar across his frontal lobe, obviously strong as he quickly wraps a leather strap around her neck and drags her, seeing that there are other young women already chained to the wall in various states of distress...all begin to scream, Goodbody covers her whole head in a leather head mask and she immediately begins to sweat then wraps another leather strap around ankles, raises them on a hook and line hanging from a bar along the wall trim and walks away as she feels the sweat overwhelm her, blind her and touch her lips then  realizes it isn't sweat but her blood, her face her head oozing blood from the holes made by spikes in the mask. Suddenly someone grabs her forearm and holds, then there's a horrible burning pain eating the skin of the underside of her forearm , sizzling a subtle smell of burning flesh...she could smell it...the women fell, scarred....

The quivering slugs, engorged from a floor flooded with blood, the blood poured from the roots of the tree of agony raced to Goodbody like happy pets. Blood poured from her through the spiked jacket and the bloodied slugs raced with delight to soak and suck up her blood...pigs wallowing in their muck..

A white robe soaked in blood, the blood drained away from his robe as he rose from the blood soaked meditation

The captain talks to them all...

When I was a child on a world so very far from here your mind could never grasp the distance to there, I played a game against another who never understood; I won of course. I took the pieces of his body that were left and stuffed them away for another day but my mother, angry as always was again upset that I couldn't finish him off during the game...angry, she was angry that I had brought the rest home for her...I don't need your help, she hissed, "I can fetch my own"...

Rub two sticks together and you get fire.
Confrontation.
Conflict.
You can't see without the light of fire.
The light is good, a benefit as well as a detriment...depending on a person's intentions and point of view, everything is good and bad…
A person’s intention makes it one or the other.

Her first thoughts are to escape, find a way though nothing truly keeps her but the closet seems like the only way until she studies the roots that are the base of the tree of agony...has anybody else tried, failed, succeeded?

hundreds of women in agony seems like the only other way out, climbing the roots and slipping out but why is she so much faster than the others..the others crawl in agony while she squirms up through the bodies, riding the current of their agony, passing them, squirting to escape above the others upon the soil and she runs...

The way out is through the roots of agony...she races the others to the top and wins to escape...but is caught to compete in another heat...She tires after many rounds and refuses to comply...

Existence needs guidance, not a definitive answer but an answer to build from the struggle is the agony the effort for a definitive answer that never comes, you need to exist...

She swims through their remains, their blood to beat them all...

Elsa appears to act as judge

Elsa is clearly supportive...She has chosen you to win...She was supportive of the others until she saw you...You became her quest, she played her game knowing she had you, you were the winner when she choose you

She escapes and looks back...

She understands the peculiar texture of Elsa's skin and that she also suffered the agony...

I was terrified of the old man when he first took man but somehow he knew I would come back he even visited me in the hospital. All he did was ask me. I'm old and he needs someone in place of me. Perhaps it could be you.

Blood filled slugs crawled up and down the walls.

Goodbody is alien...

Goodbody rises from the cellar angered by betrayal, losing control of No'la...

No'la escapes repeating what May had done but in the end returning to Goodbody, who knew she would return... and take May's place...

What if...
The universe isn't a pleasant place to exist in...but be.

Let her race the roots, she will win, the others are no faster than before, they find no strength in their own pain nor strength in that of others...

She will lose like the rest.. die in the roots of agony..I will lose and never have another like you...

Maybe for us to survive intergalactic exploration and discovery as a species, we need to be brutal..

Perhaps what we need to be is the brightly colored flower in a placid garden that when approached treats as it would any other prey...

Perhaps now, we are testing the muck we wallow in like pigs so that we will better navigate the truly cold dark territory laid out for us as the universe...

How long have you been alive?
I've never been alive and I will never die...we are forever

Mat is a very flawed superhero



As Anton escorts the others to their rooms a heavy bumping sound congress from one of the other rooms. Anton looks in and checks. A voice acknowledges all is good...but Anton enters and closes the door. Moments later he comes back out and all seems fine and he continues to escort them...

No'la had lost her way but found flawed people to support her and run block against any threats or acts on her emotions. She is chosen to benefit any being with the power that she had left open to exploitation...

No'la's team is strong and there to support her but are just as flawed as her but looking for someone with a mission to fill their need to nurture and protect. They are stronger together but not invincible and ultimately expendable, a sacrifice.

Goodbody is about immortal power, soulless power and exercising the application of hate. His goals and purpose are greater than can be explained except attempts at foiling him cause immense anger as his efforts to teach others his ways to hate. He is everything to everybody but always evil. Many persons in authority who are weak see his presence and it is evil, preying on their latent negative tendencies...it is the stronger of soul and will who can rise against him...a being who must always exist to develop and exploit the evil in a society...worse than any fantastic devil...

May is at the end of her time and he will finally release her as soon as a replacement girl can be found. May is lonely and has long ago accepted her place in the hierarchy...
No'la cries for Mat knowing he will die to save her…

We fear the loss of imagination...you live it, protects you from the pain that is real and constant, that is why humankind had amazing sense of security...fear, as the demon, breaks down the walls of imagination that protect us...a child is born and knows fear intimately than is able to imagine it all away through lessons learned by experience and nurturing...pain is reality...we live to die and are terrified of that truth, building walls of imagination against that truth...we are creators because we have to be and don't recognize that fact instead giving the power of creation to a singular creator...

Those free of imagination suffer the truth of pain, some relish that freedom others yet hide from it...we are children of the dark imagining the light to hide from the truth...

The Screaming Closet..filled with the wardrobe of imagination within which all horrors exist...

Goodbody speaks of the screaming closet No'la entered...

Did you hear them? The screams...did you hear the screams in the closet? You have passed into a world where the walls you hide behind all that imagination you construct to protect you from the truth has been torn away...the truth revealed, here where there is no place to hide from the horror...

You are privileged to witness the horror death without dying and instead living the horror that is the truth..

Humans wait on a virtual line for what they can get, so few wait for what they desire, even less get off the line and jump forward to get what they want, questioning everything and always with a solution. Most humans can barely name what they want and question how to get it...it is all there for you to take but you must take it, with respect, but take it you must for it will never come to you...

Evil exists for pleasure.
The opposite of why good exists, for pleasure.

What are they looking for?
Who is they? Goodbody, Elsa and Anton...
They have been waiting, looking sifting through woman candidate after candidate until they find one... rarely is the candidate so open to accept her fate... No'la came to them and despite her initial reticence opened completely as the others have...

The tree of agony thickens with waste that becomes fertilizer to feed the tree and the grounds around that eventually seeds the earth...

Elsa is getting old, very old. What becomes of Elsa. She rarely sits on the throne and governs.

Like any human facet, evil must be nurtured...call it God, a great spirit, nature, with some variability, there are two sides to everything and the two that make up existence we call good and evil, the creative and destructive force, yin and yang, push and pull...if one could destroy all evil then one can destroy all good which can't happen...

Words, names, language define without trying, we rely on words, language to define all we perceive...

Perception seeks definition when quantum tells us otherwise...

All existence seeks guidance...there are leaders and followers, we ponder others perception to define our own individual standards...even when we are independent, we are not, we are part of a whole...

Like water fallen on a seemingly open plane, it isn't, the water finds guidance in the tiniest of cracks and opens wide its potential, the plane offers the water a path of least resistance...

All existence is weak and finds the strength to go on in others or finds it in itself

Creation and destruction require each other...

Shiva, the God of destruction lays waste the seeds from which life returns...

Good and bad don't exist but are perceived by the viewer as such in context with most of existence is perceived as horrifying..

Goodbody is not a God but a hungry alien serial killer fulfilling the needs of evil...he must exist...The Elsa has been his queen to keep… May before and now No'la...he has been hungry for a new queen, a showpiece.

He waits for her...meditating, sitting in blood pooling at the foot of the throne, a knot of bloody tendrils trickling blood and echoes sounds...

She had drawn up into a full body enclosed brace completely wrapping her body in a form fitting iron coffin that she could smell from past use. Her body was held upside down, her ankles set free of the chains her body coming to rest on rusty upright nails that pierced the outer layer of her skin holding her in place as her blood flowed from the puncture wounds made by the nails spilling warm blood all over her body. She found a way to turn her head enough to avoid blood collecting in her mouth and drowning her. The slow bloodletting caused her to weaken, fall into a reverie caused by the bloodletting an of form of meditation as she hung pierced waiting to die.

Suddenly, the ankle chains tightened and very slowly lifted her from the nails and there was a sudden change in awareness upon release from the pain, as the numbing of her skin peeled away revealing countless open wounds breathing, struggling for air they gasped to inhale and caused her to weaken from the sudden rush oxygen and sleep. She never felt herself falling from the chains but awakened on the floor warmed and blood pooling from her wounds and innumerable other survivors..
The whole of the room moves as if alive, tentacles hidden under what seems like skin lining the walls reaching out from a darkened area beyond the light from which the blood slugs arose from...

___________________________________________________________________
Rise

“The power of love”said Elsa to Mat as they sat in front of the unlit fireplace of the hotel lobby. Mat stood at the mantle holding a cup of coffee Elsa had brought him, looking up at the giant painting of a gentleman hung over the fireplace mantel...the old blind man as he is rolled into position at the balcony.
“I'm going to get her she should be up already, we have to go.”
“My late husband...the man in the painting I mean…”
They talked of love and how powerful it can be, how love can transcend anything, including logic, things like a woman living with an abusive husband.
”Is it love or just the fear of being alone? People will bury themselves in a terrible relationship because it's the only relationship they have and they'd rather have the horror's of a bad relationship than the horror of nothing...happens all the time....I've had my share…”
Mat to Elsa… ”I shall return…”

Mat returns, No'la's gone. Did she leave in the middle of the night. The doors locked to her room can we go in and check.

Call the police.

Her things are gone.

How do local police respond to a person missing in a city they are visiting?

Investigators come knocking...investigating Mat's claims of murder...

There was the door, the closet door from which came the cries of pain and love and death, the monster roared and they cried and whimpered in fear but one, Mays voice silenced the room and lovingly she spoke to them all, then said, "you've kept too many, take some out" the screaming closet...

No'la tries to escape as May once did...but this time because Mat tries to rescue No'la but No'la is found by a good Samaritan who runs off to find police when Goodbody appears in his trench coat in the rain to call her back. She goes back before the police arrive.

Anton, hurries to help find No'la who is picked up by Goodbody and Elsa where she agrees to return...

Anton disappears...

Mat is found and taken by police


___________________________________________________________________
Place of Fire

Davida spies the lobby alone, no one about, looks at the sparsely stocked bar really a drink cart from someone's house bar...
She takes a drink and is startled by a suddenly present Anton...then by Elsa...


The grand foyer was once a church that had a hospital added to the back during the civil war which is now the hotel, that all became an asylum before and after the turn of the century then a hotel and a jazz club during prohibition, a private club behind the doors on either side of the center staircase... would you like to see, she shows Davida.

Sitting around the fire, No'la and Mat go off to their separate rooms after learning much about the hotel and it's origins. Alone with Davida, Elsa tells the truth that she is May and she found ways to cope, she has cope, a human has to cope, she had come to love her kidnapper, having been taken before puberty, she saw everything and only escaped when and learned from the other girls what life was like for them as teenagers... she lived on her own, homeless at first she yearned to be with him again, with Mr. Goodbody, brought him a gift, a woman she had murdered and tortured on her own...she showed him what she had down hoping he would be proud of her...and he was...

Davida watches as Elsa eats her take out...rare, undercooked lamb if not raw in large chunks well spiced over raw veggies...

What she tells to Davida...having been taken before puberty, she saw everything and only escaped when and learned from the other girls what life was like for them as teenagers... she lived on her own, homeless at first and eventually came to hate what he had done to her and made life as a teenager so difficult for her...she finally decided to visit him brought him a gift, a woman she had murdered and tortured on her own....she showed him what she had done for him, hoping he would be proud of her...and he was and then she killed him and took the house...

No'la finally had a big story. Not world changing but a mystery was solved and it would be hers alone to tell the world of a monster who lived among them, side by side, living as a normal person with a normal job who was also and more importantly a monster...

Anton kills Davida, as Davida runs to warn No'la her room that they are in danger. Evil quick moving snails slither up from under the guest room doors to Davida and begin to devour her...

Stoned or drugged she stumbles forward to the room she shares with No'la and stands at the door...back to Anton as he approaches with the blade growing from under his sleeve

All that No’la worked hard for was for naught...

Elsa/May stands as Mat's accuser to the police

No'la sits on the throne channelling god's words of existence...

You are just a tool... I am someone else's tool...
the universe is an ugly place, terrifying
There is a place for beings such as us... we consume each other and others, the taste of exotic flesh still moist and warm in our mouths...everything has a purpose despite how unreasonable it seems... the universe is quite unreasonable and it doesn't care what you think or if you do...

Can you hear a voice? It is your voice...but my thoughts
You wonder why I treat you so and like the queen you are... you are learning and you will be far above and so below me....


I sweat not the emotion you suffer

___________________________________________________________________
Perpetual Inmate

Matador awakened…
Arms raised over his head, a heavy set of handcuffs tied by a thick chain holding his wrists looped around an extremely cold rusty pipe crossing the ceiling of the jail cell… the cold permeating, his hands so cold, so numb until he could hear water draining through the pipe, hot water so hot the pipe would change temperature and as cold became extremely cold, hot was just as bad until his hands could no longer function between the temperature changes…

“Seems he's got your name, Matt, the one who stared at you before... we kept him on ice- hot for you..”
“Mat? You have my name…?”
“My name is Matador not Matthew.”
“Ohhhh, we got ourselves a bullfighter here, a black bullfighter, shake that red cape, that black cock, tease the black bull...wanna switch places, play the bull? I’ll shake my cock for you black bull...

A white police officer entered

The world has changed nigger...where your people were once brought to this land to be ours to use...somehow you got the idea you’re human… I was in the service… were you now, not me, that’s what fodder is for and you are fodder, shit...

Mat is mistreated by the police and ultimately hung to feign suicide. Arrested for trying to wreck the house after the girls are alleged to have disappeared.

Mat, alone in the cell is ranting about his treatment. “Why am I in here? I called you guys. I'm pressing charges on the old lady. I'm a vet damn it. I fought in the war!!!”


Chorus
___________________________________________________________________
Two black, handymen set about fixing a broken wooden door leading down into the jail cell level, hammering away at the hinge pins that are bent trying to remove them and succeeding while music plays from a vinyl record on a turntable while Mat is murdered by hanging by the abusive police officers... the criminal officer loves metal music on vinyl...old school..walks into the cell and locks the cell door and drops the keys just outside the bars and quickly attacks and overwhelms Mat as he explains he's a vet too... Mat blacks out. The officer lays him down gently on the floor, undresses him from the orange jumpsuit and ties it from a pipe running across the cell ceiling fashioning a portion of it into a noose. Then lifting Mat into position so the noose falls into place around his neck then let's go.
That jerk Mat, seems he's got your name, the one who stared at you before... we kept him on ice for you..
The ancient, no longer frail, withdrew from the abyss, strong…
The two black workers, a greek chorus, their words are of anguish, of anger and violence and the glory of the abyss...
___________________________________________________________________



Expand to solo story about the tree and all the macabre stories surrounding it...as told by a 3rd person

Children's horror story, the tree of agony, told by the voices of so many who suffered, playing in the open yard of the old house next door, the tree changes...as if bodies rise from the earth inside the tree...

It was the end of summer past since anyone had seen the boys...seven boys lost and no one understood, no one could say...except to be aware of who was climbing the tree, from within but the center of all the turmoil was the rich old man's house..why? The house was empty, the old man had disappeared decades before, the property lost in a sea of legal madness stood erect on the property as the landscaper manicured the grounds like clockwork...had become the requisite haunted house of the little town lost...

A lonely town lost to an age of bits and pixels, those that counted the past in years and not in decades lived...

In a small town of bliss a ferry ride across the bay from NYC where it seemed like another world, a better world...in the projects I rarely went outside of the building...

Ancient stories of a child having been taken for torture by the rich old man in the old house from which the village had spawned...one almost imagined the old Spanish village was the old man's toy...

The projects were almost non-existent, so far away...in Brooklyn though my pride for Brooklyn as my place of birth is often notable the fear I knew existed there was apparent...Brooklyn was what I imagined the real world...where I attended school, darkness and fear roamed the streets awaiting my late night returns but nothing kept me from stepping out, taking in the world, I knew in that darkness, waiting for me was the rest of my life...

But Spanish camp was a place where he was often left in a meditative state, whether by drugs or the nature of God tossing waves against the shore...where I could be away from the anger in Brooklyn and have the time and sense to find myself...

But horror was never far behind, lurking in the dark it seemed to always find you...

Watching the gnarled tree which grew from a strong sapling tended to in the grand yard to a monster we knew consumed children...

Was it ever planted, an innocent sapling born innocently or blood that soaked the earth around it...

I looked down at the ugly knot form into a likeness of Tobias reaching out for help...

Invariably, that day came to mourn Tobias’ death and all around him the world stopped...

End of summer...

Memories longed to gather awaiting their recollection...souls twisted into the knots of a tree dying forever calling for salvation in angry wails and finding none...
Like any small town in America

Old woman looks out from an attic

A ball through the window and a friend tells the tale of a young Spanish somewhat feeble and pale woman who stepped down the grand staircase to bring him the ball that had damaged the upstairs window...

The tree was once a short stump that had been cut until it was filled with the souls of dead people to eventually become the tree of agony...once cut down from a modest tree that bled from it's wounds, blessed with blood and shrouded with human skin

The tree of agony...one doesn't immediately think a tree as a life to consider, it's life a constant battle to grow from roots embedded and torn from the earth, reaching deeper and deeper for nourishment finding instead for the bodies of children...suckling their bodies for the water it expects instead the blood that gives them far more strength

A vampire tree 
A vampire tree out of need...
A tree that cries for blood...