Monday, May 25, 2009

Paint: Monochrome 1

A little practice with Payne's Gray, from an exercise in David Bellamy's excellent Watercolour Landscape Course.

Click for bigger, as usual.

Paint: Happy Little Trees

I've stashed away some "trees doodles" here (I giggled, oh yes I did, and so did you if you're as easily amused as I).


Click for ex-acorn size.

This is the first post for a new category: "Paint", where I'll share some of my explorations with watercolors.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Story: Manifest Destiny

This one's brand new. Feedback appreciated. Seriously.

Manifest Destiny

He never doubted himself. As he lay in the dark, with the walls and bars of his universe closing in, he thought back.

He thought about the times as a kid when he had gotten into trouble. Each time, he could trace events back to someone. A so-called friend. His "loving" parents. Meddling teachers. It was hard experience, but that's how you learn, he thought. And now, he knew the system.

He also knew that he was smart enough to play the system. He saw himself as someone to be reckoned with. No doubt about it.

His mind drifted inward and back again as he considered his adult life. It was full of unfulfilled dreams and plans gone wrong. He clearly saw the myriad ways, large and small, that the system had conspired to trip him up. To prevent him from achieving his destiny. He was intimate with every detail, because he had spent many a long night in contemplation. He had time, and there was nothing better to do. He saw again and again where things should have gone differently, if not for the system. The system was afraid of him, because of his knowledge and experience and clever mind. Oh yes, he knew the system was afraid.

So he counted down the days of yet another long stretch, thinking and planning and biding his time. His confidence never wavered, for he knew that he could use the system against itself to realize his dreams.

Next time it would be different. He was sure of it.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Story: Paying Dearly (updated)

This is another oldie. I wrote this for a contest at a gonzo film site, and took first prize. The fact that I never received the promised prize makes it ok in my mind to post this now, here at my place.

Update: I supposed I should point out that the object of the contest was to write a scene from a Nazisploitation movie. Told you it was gonzo.

As always, for good or ill, all feedback is greatly appreciated.

Paying Dearly

Weakened and exhausted, Simone hangs from the ceiling, no longer caring that the heavy iron of the manacles cuts into the flesh around her wrists. She's given up hope that her own blood would be lubricant enough to allow her to slip her bonds, even though her only option at this point would be to take her own life.

She will break, she knows she will break, but she prays that she will be strong enough to last just a few more hours.

Behind her, the door opens. She cannot turn enough to see who entered, and she steels herself for more beatings. Her back and thighs are a mass of cuts, bruises and welts, and the stinging of her sweat dripping down her savaged back seems trivial compared to the pain they've already inflicted.

The Nazi officer who enters her field of vision is short and thin, he looks like nothing so much as a meek accountant. Simone has already had direct experience of how deceiving his appearance and demeanor are. She fleetingly wonders at how something as ordinary as wearing gray wool and leather boots can unleash the monster hidden inside. She is also proud of how many of these monsters she has helped to kill over the last eight months.

Not wasting effort on defiance, Simone watches silently as he carefully places a covered tray on a small table against the wall. On the table are arranged various instruments, some medical, some perverted horrors designed to inflict agony. She looks him straight in the eye as he turns to her. His gaze travels slowly up and down her body which is barely covered by the tattered rags that are all that's left of her clothing. Simone feels nothing as the Nazi reaches out with both hands and, almost gently, pushes the halves of her blouse apart to fully expose her breasts. Stepping back again, he regards her a moment before speaking.

"You realize, of course, that you are not going to survive this."

Simone simply returns his gaze.

"You have a pleasing body, and no doubt would be popular as a whore for the collaborators, but even after reeducating you, it would be foolish to think that you weren't still a dangerous animal."

He pauses to light a cigarette, "And I am no fool." With a wistful sigh, he continues, "and there are other... intriguing... methods that I could employ to entertain myself. For instance, I believe you know Giselle?"

Giving a sharp whistle, the Nazi is joined by a naked girl crawling on all fours. Her head is shaved bald and there is a bristly tail protruding from the thick plug inserted into her anus. As the girl cowers at his feet like a cringing dog, Simone fights to hide her revulsion as the Nazi commands Giselle to "sit up" and face Simone. Simone did indeed know Giselle, or at least the woman who used to be Giselle. She had been arrested by the Gestapo a month ago. There was no recognition in her eyes, or even evidence of higher thought. Surgical scars at her throat provided evidence that her vocal cords had been removed. The Nazi pats her head and Giselle gives a happy whimper.

Suddenly the officer draws his luger and without hesitation fires directly into the head of the kneeling Giselle. As her body collapses he continues to pull the trigger, shooting again and again into her lifeless form. Staring straight into Simone's shocked eyes he lays the overheated pistol barrel against her nipple, pressing hard against her chest as she screams and writhes against the chains.

As she collapses again in her bonds, panting and moaning, the Nazi methodically reloads his Luger and carefully replaces it into his holster. He remarks, "the hounds in the kennel will miss Giselle, I will have to train a new bitch to take care of their needs."

Turning his full attention to Simone, he says, "I know that you are part of the Resistance. In fact, today is like a reunion for you! Look, another friend!" With that, the Nazi picks up the covered tray from table and, lifting the lid, presents the platter to his captive.

Simone gags as her stunned mind comprehends what she sees. A tattered sausage of flesh attached to a torn scrap of skin, barely identifiable as male. Also arranged on the tray are two jelly-like eyeballs and a finger. She almost vomits as she recognizes the ring on the finger. Paul wore that ring.

Placing the platter back onto the table, the Nazi leaves it uncovered so that she can see it. Rubbing his hands briskly together, he says, "all this excitement has given me an appetite! I'm sorry that I can't invite you to join me for lunch, but I will send in a "technician" to keep you company while I dine."

Moving out of her range of vision, he continues, "We have a very special guest coming to visit this evening, a General from Berlin. I think he will be very interested in seeing our techniques for persuasion, and you, my dear, will be the star exhibit!"

As he leaves the room, he doesn't see the faint smile on Simone's bruised lips. A General! Perhaps on the troop train scheduled to arrive tonight. The train that will, if all goes well, plunge into the river when the Resistance blows up the bridge.

Please, a few hours. Let me last a few hours more.

Behind her, she hears the technician enter the room.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Story: Clowns

Just a little warm up here, a story I posted on an old blog in July of 2008. Like it? Hate it? Either way, I'd appreciate feedback.


Fucking clowns.

Merry looks out the window, and that’s what she sees – fucking clowns. Looks like about 5 of ‘em, although the way they’re bouncing and scampering around, it’s hard to count for certain. There’s some kind of spooky-goofy music blaring from the speakers on top of their stupid pumpkin colored van, and it’s annoying as hell. It's way too early on Halloween to start this crap.

Thank god the kiddo's already at school. Merry can imagine being driven nuts over the clowns, as if the kiddo needed something more besides trick or treating tonight to go hyper.

Apparently they just arrived, and started doing what clowns always do, just piling out of the van and looking stupid doing it. Merry audibly groans when she sees her mom standing on the sidewalk out front. Mom must have been on her way over for coffee when the clowns showed up, and she looks delighted as one presents her with a huge balloon with a jack o’lantern face on it.

Shit. Merry had just found one of Roger's notes too. She'd come downstairs and there it was, an envelope on the chair. She'd begun to read it when the commotion outside started. After work tonight, after trick or treating, Roger wants to play. Roger wants to play kinky. Knees weak, Merry could hardly wait.

Merry's mom walks in the door, being careful not to pop her balloon, and three of those fucking clowns bound in behind her. She’s laughing at them, but Merry is just pissed about them coming in like that. Before she can order them out of the house, one steps forward and, with a comical floor sweeping bow and tip of the hat, presents Merry with an orange envelope.

Another note? Things click into place. More Roger games.

As Merry begins to open the envelope, two clowns rush up and begin to dress her. One produces a huge old brown jacket, and helps Merry into it despite her protests. Mom is laughing to see her daughter getting costumed whether she likes it or not, and these guys are not taking ‘no’ for an answer. Another clown takes the orange envelope and puts it between Merry's teeth, and then she's helped into a big baggy pair of black pants. Someone else lifts her arms and slides a thick wooden pole through the jacket, holding Merry's arms out like a crucifix.

Nope. Like a scarecrow, Merry sees as another begins stuffing straw into the sleeves around her wrists. Dammit, now she's definitely going to have to dust and vacuum again. There are at least four clowns dancing around and dressing Merry, constantly getting in each others way. The pole across her shoulders is uncomfortable, and as she flexes her arms she realizes that somewhere in the confusion her wrists were fastened to the pole.

Merry parts her lips to protest, and someone pops a set of fake teeth into her mouth. In an instant, a bladder behind the plastic grin inflates, filling her mouth and effectively gagging her. When she turns to look at mom again, Merry almost loses her balance because her feet are no longer free, they’re hitched to another pole – this one running down her back. Mom’s not paying attention anyway, one of the clowns is entertaining her with balloon animal tricks.

A band of some sort is slipped over Merry's forehead and around the bar behind her, and when it’s tightened her head is held still. Someone places and adjusts a wig to hide the band, followed by a floppy brown hat. A pair of dark, oversized glasses is set over her nose, and a little quick stage-makeup to rosy up her cheeks finishes the transformation.

A clown on either flank holds Merry upright and turns her towards mom as they all holler “ta-dahhhh” and gesture towards her with flourishes. Merry tries to struggle, to show her mom that something is wrong here, but she doesn’t suspect any problems and actually applauds the scarecrow ‘costume’.

Right before mom's eyes, Merry is lifted up and carried out to the van. The doors are opened and she's laid inside among trunks and cases and bags. The last thing Merry sees is mom giving one of the clowns a kiss on the cheek, and his exaggerated ‘aw shucks’ reaction.

Ok, the envelope means that this is obviously one of Roger’s games, so Merry's not too worried about it. In fact, she thinks she knows which clown might be Roger, even through the costumes, confusion, and amazing makeup.

Only two clowns climb into the van, and as one starts the engine and begins to drive, the other comes into the back with Merry. She relaxes because yep, it’s the one she'd already figured out was Roger.

He squats next to Merry, reaches inside her jacket, and gives her breast a firm squeeze. Merry's nipple instantly hardens against his palm as he massages her.

Suddenly, with an almost-funny ‘oh shit, I forgot!’ gesture, Roger/Clown magically produces that orange envelope. With more of those stupid hand flourishes, he finishes opening it and extracts the paper inside. He expresses surprise as he ‘reads’ the note, and then holds the paper in front of Merry for her to read.

The paper is blank.

That happy grin gazing down on Merry doesn’t look so harmless anymore. Looking closer, she sees a million tiny differences in the features under the greasepaint, and she's suddenly convinced that this isn’t Roger.

He reaches down and begins mauling her breasts again. Merry struggles as much as she can (not much), and wonders what the fuck is going on. What the fuck is going to happen to her?

Getting right in her face, the clown starts talking to Merry. All she can do is stare back, wide eyed, as he speaks. “I’m going to remove your gag now. If you speak, I’ll hit you. If you yell, I’ll break your jaw. If you disobey in any way, I will choke you unconscious, then revive you, and I will keep doing that over and over and over until I get tired of hurting you, at which point you die. Blink twice if you understand.”

Carefully and deliberately, Merry blinks twice.

He settles back a little and fiddles with the gag. The bladder deflates, and he pops it out of her mouth. Merry licks dry lips with a drier tongue, and breathes deeply. He speaks again, “There is no reason for you to get hurt, IF you do everything you are told to do.”

Two blinks.

He grins that hideous clown smile at Merry and cruelly pinches a nipple. “I knew you were a fast learner.”

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Pens, Pencils, Paper and Pain

Oops, I meant "Paint", of course.

Let's see where this takes us, eh?