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When the Wretched Rise Up
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This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.   This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.   printer-friendly view    Red Dragon Inn - Dragon's Mark Forum Index -> The Catacombs -> In The Valley Below
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Glenn Douglas
Adult Wyrm
Adult Wyrm


Joined: 12 Apr 2010
Posts: 206
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Jobs: Gumshoe, Undertaker

22878.58 Silver Crowns

Items

PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2016 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glenn goes back to his motel to find that it has been ransacked. The door has been kicked in and is half hanging off of its hinges. The lock is broken. His bed has been overturned and his dresser emptied. His belongings are scattered everywhere amidst the cheap stuffing of his pillow which someone had torn open, in search of what he could not say. He steps around the overturned mattress and sees an old man lying down face first and recognizes him as part one of the couple that he'd seen earlier when he was waiting for Bobby to deliver his package.

He sighs and turns the man over. His chest is red with blood and there is a gunshot wound that has been slowly bleeding into the carpet.

"They're gonna charge me extra for this," he says. He closes the old mans eyes and walks into the bathroom. He undresses and tosses his clothes into a pile on the floor and steps into the shower. He doesn't even know if he has any clothes to wear now, after the raiding of his room. But he is covered in blood and sweat and most of it is not his and he feels the filth of his recent actions seeping into his pores. He needs to escape that feeling, and so he showers.

He stands there with his door ajar, and the door to his room still open. He does not care. Let them come attack him in the shower, he will kill them, too. When he is done he steps out and wraps a towel around himself and digs through upended bags and finds some clothes to wear. An ash gray shirt and some jeans. The shirt smells like someone he's trying not to remember, but it's all he has that's clean at the moment and he needs to feel clean. So he wears it.

He finds the metal box that is locked and smiles. There is some small victory in that. They either had not seen it under the dresser or could not figure out how to open it. It's a puzzle box, and it is durable. Examining the box reveals some scuffs and he assumes they tried to break in, but couldn't. Or maybe they ran out of time when the old man stumbled in. Poor guy, he died for nothing.

Glenn opens the box and finds inside a small assortment of armaments and personal effects. Letters that he's written and couldn't bear to burn, a few torn out pages of poetry, some of it his but most of it from other authors, an old photograph in black and white and sepia of his family, his old Dragoons, and a compact pistol with a few spare magazines. He takes the small pistol and closes the box. Then he stands and takes the box over to his motorcycle, dropping it into the saddlebag. He goes next door to where the old couple had been staying and reaches up to knock. The door isn't fully closed so it opens when he touches.

He knows what he will find inside but he looks anyways.

The old woman is sitting in the chair by the table. She has no visible woulds but there is a lumpy pillow on the floor beside her. Glenn approaches to check her pulse and assumes that she's been suffocated, because she is dead.

"That's what happens," he tells her. "That's why you don't snoop into other peoples *** , lady. You probably told your old man to come shut me up 'cause I was makin' a ruckus, huh?"

He laughs bitterly and leaves her dead and alone in the room. Then he climbs onto his motorcycle and walks it over to the office so he can pay for the room and the damage and report the break in.
_________________
I go on journeys out of my body and look at my red hands and my mean face and I wonder about that man who's gone so wrong.
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Glenn Douglas
Adult Wyrm
Adult Wyrm


Joined: 12 Apr 2010
Posts: 206
See this user's pet
Jobs: Gumshoe, Undertaker

22878.58 Silver Crowns

Items

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2017 2:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

York had never been a large or impressive town. But the shambling remains of the houses and stores that lined either side of the wide dirt road that split the place in two seemed smaller than he remembered, too small to be a place anyone might call home. The dusty road had forgotten the passing of hooves and wagon wheels. Not even the lonesome coyote had been to York since the last time Glenn Douglas came through town and brought Hell and destruction with him. He was walking through town on a gray dappled mare who stamped the ground nervously with a hoof every so often like she was ready to turn tail and split at the first sign of trouble. It was a ghost town in the truest sense of the word. The buildings were mostly charred remains of thick beams that lay haphazard and partially collapsed roofs. They were blackened and sooty and the air was acrid and sulfurous. The sky was bright and blue and cloudless, the sun hot and unforgiving.

The horse tracks they left behind were smoothed out in the dirt by the litter being dragged behind. It was fixed to an old and worm saddle and lashed together with some rope that held a person sized bundle in place.

The house was still standing. It and the church had survived the coming storm that was Glenn Douglas and all his damned troubles. He went past the former and rode on toward the latter and its pitiful little graveyard.

The dirt was dry and hard as stone and he only had an old rusted shovel and a small canteen of water to work with. So, he drank a little and started digging.

Hours passed him by. Long hours that kept the sun high in the sky, defying logic and time as though all of creation were mocking him and his struggles. But he dug that hole in the earth in spite of it all, his sweat soaking through his clothes and darkening the band of his hat. His hands blistered and the back of his neck was burned. His knuckles were dry and cracked, the lines of skin stretched tight across them turning red. But he dug.

He dug until the hole was deep enough and then climbed out and removed the body from the litter. In his arms, it seemed a small and frail thing, a woman’s body to be sure. It was awkward work lowering it into the freshly dug grave but he managed it all the same. And then he sat there and stared at the featureless shape in the earth and time started up again. His throat burned.

It was dry and cracking, it hurt to swallow and breathe. He thought he should cry.

It was too hot for that.

Too damned hot.

Glenn stabbed the shovel into the earth and leaned on it. He reached into his pocket and produced a necklace. A little black lump of stone hung from it, wrapped and surrounded by coils of wire. He studied the thing for a time and then held it out over the grave and let go. Then he went over to the pile of freshly dug dirt and started filling.

The sun set by the time he was done so he lay out there on the sun caked earth beside the grave and looked up at the stars. His arm stretched to the heavens, finger pointing to trace lines of constellations like he used to with Brandon when they were boys and like he had at the pond when he was with her. He found the Dippers, big and little, and a few more. He found the Gunslinger that he’d made up those years ago, and thought that it really didn’t look like much of a gunslinger now that he was older. The mind sees what it wants.

“You ever sit in the dark?” he asked the air. “Sit out here and look and think. Think about what you are and what you’ve done, where you’ve come from, been, and are headed? Sometimes the only way a man can get his head on straight is when he comes out and sits under it all, no distractions and nothin’ between him and his soul but his own ego.”

“It’s been a while,” his hand ran down the length of his face, smearing sweat and dusty away. “A long while since I came out this way and did that. Counted the stars.”

Glenn pulled his hat down over his eyes and slept.

“So long, Dandelion,” he placed a hat over the grave, gave Anabelle the rest of the water, and left York.

This time, he thought, for good.

Glenn never was one for lingering in the past.
_________________
I go on journeys out of my body and look at my red hands and my mean face and I wonder about that man who's gone so wrong.
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Glenn Douglas
Adult Wyrm
Adult Wyrm


Joined: 12 Apr 2010
Posts: 206
See this user's pet
Jobs: Gumshoe, Undertaker

22878.58 Silver Crowns

Items

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At what point does a house stop being a home?

Is it when the people who lived in it are all dead, gone, or both?

The floor was layered with dust that made it seem several shades paler than it actually was. Beneath the dust long lines were carved into the wood in front of the door, like something big and heavy had been dragged across the floor. It was untouched by the fires of Leo Ortiz and his monsters, relatively speaking. Only the glass pane on the front door was broken. The shutters were closed and latched and the rest looked neglected, but not vandalized. That, he figured, was the point.

Glenn crossed the threshold of his childhood home, little clouds of dust rising around his ankles, and he lingered there in the entryway and considered turning back.

“You ain’t afraid of ghosts,” he reminded himself.

It was dark inside the house so he walked around the ground floor and un-shuttered the windows, wiping away the buildup of dirt and grime so clean light could shine through. The dining table was set for dinner for three. He picked up one of the pieces of chipped china and twisted it between his hands and imagined a table set for six. Then he left and went upstairs.

The Douglas house had three bedrooms. The boys had all shared a room in their younger years, with Brandon being the first to move out when he married a rancher’s girl and Glenn being the second when he went on to pursue the life of the famed outlaws he used to hear stories about as a boy. Paul never made it out of the Douglas home. Little Ana was fortunate enough to have a room to herself, being the only girl, and then Arthur and Anabelle had their own.

The children’s rooms he ignored. There was nothing left for him in the boy’s, he knew, and Ana’s would force him to revisit memories best left in the past.

The door was stiff on its hinges but opened all the same.

The progenitors of the Douglas family had a modest bedchamber. The mattress was lumpy and moth ridden, the wooden armoire old and chipped. He ignored both and opened a small closet door where safe was once hidden away. In there the wood had tracks of scrapes cut into the floor, the safe was gone. He closed the door and left.

“You gotta *** me over one last time before you go for good, huh?”

Glenn spit in the dirt outside the Douglas house and climbed into the saddle.

“You’ll be forgotten like the rest of them, in the end.”
_________________
I go on journeys out of my body and look at my red hands and my mean face and I wonder about that man who's gone so wrong.
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