Penitents clogged the streets, marching solemnly under banners of Mild Discomfort, Vaguely Unsettled and Something Rashy.
Objects began to merge into one another. The terrifying substratum bubbled up like burning sugar.
“One town over, that place with the moat, and the car husks stacked up, you’ll see a palace made of old tires and plywood. Ask for Mr Peepers.”
He realized every third world was like this, pretty blue on the outside, blistering and fiery on the inside. If it wasn’t some devious master plan, it was certainly a terribly unfortunate coincidence.
One day several ships appeared, anchored off the rough, remote coast. At night, from shore, their lights were seen flickering and the sounds of an orchestra could be faintly heard.
The rocks at the bottom were perfectly triangular, covered in a dark silver sheen. A plank was lowered, contacting with euphonic vibrato.
Twelve students surrounded him, placing themselves with threatening symmetry. It’s time, their leader said, to reveal everything to us.
Gorge rose. Plates swept aside violently. The clattering shocked the crows in the rafters who circled and squawked.
Vines over the car. Vines over the barn. Squirming. The investigators walked carefully around the perimeter, lugging cans of gasoline.
Cups were turned upside down. Fire was squelched. Truncheons discarded. Hugs administered.
The hour is nigh, they told him. Nigh, he thought. Pie, cry, sigh, bye, nigh. They were pretty dramatic about it.
He wasn’t familiar with this type of exercise machine. “I know it looks exactly like an iron maiden”, she said, “but you’ll find the fitness benefits are tremendous.”
After looking inside the bags he removed all the items from the cabinets again. Maybe remove the cabinets themselves, he thought.
The couple walked into a church carrying the top half of an old wooden manikin. Appearing anxious, they asked the priest for sanctuary.
She spoke in whispers to them, not caring whether or not she was heard. It was the intention, she thought, the accuracy of her intentions.