Pretty Sweet Friend of Mine

Photography by Penny C. http://theenigmaticmonsterproject.com/2015/07/08/pretty-sweet-friend-of-mine/

Give it a kiss!

Photography by Penny C.

ashkenaz

No One Wanted It Around

IMG_1069

“Feed me, I am hungry, the beast said. It regarded its reflection on spoon as it awaited the answer. Perhaps he should just crawl into a hole and die–permanently. No one wanted a demon around.

As expected, the woman said No in a flat tone, followed by a: “Leave me alone.”

If only he could make her feel something . . . Then he wouldn’t feel so dead inside. It would never happen again like it used to, though; she had put her foot down–permanently. She didn’t want a demon around.

Theo_icon

Thursday is a Good Day

For some ___________________ (insert whatever).

Not the bees! An Extraordinary Glimpse into the First 21 Days of a Bee’s Life in 60 Seconds via Colossal.

Don’t eat while looking at this (I did, and my perogies suddenly became less than appetizing). From the Merrylin Cryptid Museum.

ashkenaz

Other Things

Marianna chose to ignore him. She always did; she had no idea if she was being delusional or not. Somehow she had convinced herself that pretending like nothing was there would cause that thing to go away. Somehow she still heard him whispering in her ears.

“Am I crazy?” was the number one question amongst a thousand others. Like most of them it also had no definite answers. Lately she had become to doubt the nature of reality. If she ever found the truth, she wouldn’t know what to do about it.

“I can wait,” he said in a soft whisper. “In the end you always come around.”

She sighed.

Theo_icon

This Bird Has Fangs

IMG_0001

This Bird Has Fangs

Sure enough, the eldritch beast showed us its true form. How such a small thing could hide something so big . . . We stood helpless, astounded by its sheer awesomeness, by its awful beauty. The monster reminded us of an angelic being; either this was the creature in the flesh, or a cruel mockery of it. It had ten monstrous wings; for a mouth its face split in half. Horizontally.

Four glowing eyes fell on me, and I felt as if the inside of me was being seared as it searched my soul.

Surely, this was not god.

coopid

The Lonesome Morning

The first rays of sunlight peered through the windows. There was no one living to appreciate the coming of the dawn. For them (on the inside) it was too late. A raven hopped across the porch railings; an old bird, large, with a cracked beak. The residents had called him Pretty Boy.

Pretty Boy regarded the silent porch, then the windows, looking as uncomfortable as it was possible for him. They used to live there, alive and happy, alive and nice. Many days they would give him food, the same way they had done for years. Pretty Boy looked at the windows again. Through the red smears there wasn’t much to see; their bodies had been  dragged away in the night as he watched from his perch on an old tree. It had frightened him.

He let out a dour cry before taking to the air. A figure loomed up in the window he was watching, startling him. Pretty Boy knew who that was.

And he did not like it.

coopid

Yesterday’s Cold Front

IMG_1124

Yesterday’s Cold Front

Yesterday was so cold, everything had been cloaked in frost. The trees looked like they were drooping, which got me to thinking: how would a tree feel? If I were a tree, or turned into one by some fluke, my life would become a nightmare. Imagine things crawling on you, boring through your skin, or just ripping it off?

I can see love struck idiots carving their names into me–I don’t want your names carved into me, I do not care! Now I shall contract a fungus. You’re too kind. Thanks.

I try being agreeable as a human, and sometimes other humans take that for granted. Somehow that agreeableness gives them the excuse to dehumanize me, to ignore my personhood. Seldom do other humans truly want other humans acting like humans (alive, flawed, and emotional). As a tree I would be a slave to the elements, bending and swaying till I grow old and rot. I would have no say.

As I’d rot I’d still be alive. Begging for someone to put me out of my misery . . . Then and only then would anyone care about my well-being. They’d say: let’s help this tree, and then only prolong my misery.

Yesterday’s cold front would have been the day I truly broke, as whatever bodily fluids would have been leached out to the surface. Or they would have frozen, expanding till I snapped.

Since I am not a tree, I am thankful that I haven’t.

ashkenaz

 

Beyond the Waterfall

IMG_0010

Beyond the Waterfall

Up in the forest, in places I used to haunt there was a lake; Lake Nettleton, they called it. Or so I’ve been told. I’m sure the First Nations people had another name for it long ago. It was a small lake that trickled down to an even smaller creek. The creek would have been a river I’m sure, if it weren’t for the beaver dam–if I called it a wall I wouldn’t be that far off the mark, for it blocked one end of the lake forcing the water to enter the creek at a trickle. If I was brave, I would have walked across the dam. As it is, the waters of Lake Nettleton set me on edge.

If you followed the creek it would take you to a small waterfall. I know this because to use the paths that circled the lake one would have to cross a makeshift bridge (which was three wooden planks, courtesy of the neighbourhood) that was literally five meters away from it. The water there was shallow, and on a sunny day it was nice to dip your feet in. Out of concern for my safety I never did; the creek bed consisted of large, slippery slabs of stone, and although small the drop down the falls would have proven fatal.

In the winter there is a drastic change that comes across the land; something that was once familiar becomes alien. When you’re walking alone there is only silence, thick and impermeable. The cold air is like oil. There are no smells . . .

The waterfall was now a wild sculpture, beautiful and ugly. One day I noticed a strange scent around the area. There was nothing like it, and it terrified me. Without even stopping to think I immediately found my way to the bottom of the falls. It was all harsh white and deep blue shadows, and the air was colder. No amount of sun could penetrate the canopy above.

For a while I was content to stare at the cold, cerulean sky. The trees reminded me of bones. The sterile scene was at odds with the mysterious smell, and I soon found myself feeling queasy. After several seconds of searching I found the source. A pile of skin and clothes, and the skin still steaming. Nearby I heard the sound of flapping; it was like thunder, which was then followed by a sharp hiss.

I took care not to throw-up as I backed away.

coopid

Friday Confessional

IMG_0760

Friday Confessional

I used to go into the woods–alone–a lot. Sometimes I’d take my dog, and he would spook if a branch snapped. Of course, the dog wasn’t used to being taken out for walks in the woods. I was.

My weapon of choice was a broken golf club (essentially a stick without the club on the end; some kids called it the light sabre), and with it I was invincible. I would bang it on a rock or a tree trunk every once in a while. Some of you may scoff or shake your head, but never once did I see a bear. Once I saw a racoon, but those don’t count.

I made the most noise.

Therefore I was the biggest.

The biggest, damnedest beast in the woods.

There was a lake in the area I once haunted. A small lake, but no less unsettling. It was always eerily quite. The lake trickled off into marshland if you went so far in the opposite direction of it (the lake was north-west, roughly). The lake made me wary. The marsh unsettled me. I avoided it altogether like it was a plague.

One day I decided to try a new path, one that I’d ignored for years. Why not? In the spirit of adventure I took it, finding out for myself where it led. Countless other paths branched off it, some that I took afterwards. There was one path with the largest widow-maker just waiting to fall; it was essentially a third of massive maple that had partly broken off. Racing to get past that was fun. I only did it twice, and then stopped. Common sense, you know . . .

But this story is not about the gnarled trees that resemble humanoids, it’s not even about the small hut beside the lake (which I only saw once, and then couldn’t find afterwards), or the lane of maples . . . or even the oddly placed pile of stones beside the hollow oak . . .

I followed the path until it ended with a curious abruptness. In front of me lay the other end of the marsh, the end covered in shadows around midday. There was no possible means of getting to the other side; no reasonable means I should say. There was an odd hedge of trees which grew in clumps that spanned across to the other shore. I have a thing with dark water, so crossing that was never going to happen. Also I had no canoe.

Any hopes of getting across were quickly ruled out. To be honest it was never an imperative. Who cared if I didn’t get to the other side?

I tried to find a way to a piece of land further along my side of the shore, but it was not going to happen. The mud was thick, and there were no real openings, it was just bush and trees.

I found myself staring at the other shore deep in thought, when I heard a wail. At first I assumed that it was a moose nearby. When it repeated itself, closer this time, I decided to take a look.

Standing on the piece of land I had eyed just a moment before was the biggest, damnedest beast in the woods. It was a huge thing, hairless by the looks of it, with sickly sallow skin that appeared to be luminous in the shade. I couldn’t tell what was head or limb, the thing was just a demented mass.

Somehow I knew that it regarded me. I retraced my steps back up the path. I don’t like to run, but that day was a good day to run.

Theo_icon

The Red Thing . . .

IMG_0052

The Red Thing . . .

I took this photo years ago. Naturally, I would have no recollection of the red thing. I couldn’t tell you if it was really supposed to be in the picture.

And there you have it: your mystery of the week.

What is the red thing?

(Points for creativity 🙂 )

ashkenaz

The Dreaded Monday Has Returned–

IMG_0749

–And Nothing Has Happened

It snowed again today.

It’s always cold on a sunny day.

Blue skies over me,

Looking down, mockingly.

Small things, that.

Eyes in the clouds–

Watching the people milling about down below,

Half-asleep, unaware.

This is why I remain indoors.

A single speck,

Looking up,

From down below.

coopid

So Cold

IMG_1120

So Cold

Cold or hot, beauty can be deadly. As we dream of winter sunsets, we hope you enjoy this picture. And have a nice weekend from Team Monster! Tomorrow Jon will have something to say!

ashkenaz

Sunday, Sunday

IMG_0017

Sunday, Sunday

Sundays are sometimes not-so-sunny. Today for instance–it’s gloomy, dreary. It’s also January. When spring comes we’ll be so happy . . . Maybe. Spring has its own quirks I suppose, an equal amount of doom and gloom. Everything will stink. Things will become wet, muddy, dirty, grimy. Rivers will swell, and basements will flood.

We’ll still be happy when spring comes, but now one must wonder if it’s really the change which gives us momentary bliss?

We hope you like blooming maples. 

(This is a horror blog! –Ashkenaz)

ashkenaz

Looking Up

IMG_0039

Looking Up

They say that top predators never look up. Perhaps this will become our evolutionary downfall. Or would it be the downfall of the subconscious? Or do top predators just have that big of an ego? It’s hard not to look up when you’re in the forest, especially if you’re in an unknown part of it. The same goes for uncharted territories, such as big cities. Once you’re familiar, nothing ceases to amaze you.

So, does this mean that predators share something in common–the inability to be amazed, or could you just call this boredom?

ashkenaz

Stare Deep Into the Ever-Widening Eyes

IMG_0031

Stare Deep Into the Ever-Widening Eyes

–Of the hare. Wet, still as death. What does it see in those tear-drop eyes, those maddening eyes that grow wider and wider, as the hare crouches lower and lower?

Those eyes are so full you feel as if they could burst. If they were to simply implode, the weight of that hare’s own personal, mounting horror would be released.

And then what?

If there is no fear for the creature, what would be left for it? Those unsettling eyes–what would they be filled with then? If the fear were to dry up like the rain, what next?

Theo_icon

Green Needles

IMG_1472

Green Needles

Nature is relentless in so many ways–and we’re talking about the inspirational aspect of it, not the constantly-trying-to-kill-us bit (that bit is huge). Even a simple pine* needle yields its detail under close inspection. If you look close enough, what else would you find?

What else?

(Don’t blink.)

*Or spruce, we could be wrong.

Theo_icon

Seeing the Forest

IMG_1101

Seeing the Forest

The good thing about the snow is that it brings on the holiday spirit. (Yay, Friday!)

Theo_icon

The Ice Winds Cometh

IMG_1105

The Ice Winds Cometh

I saw snow today. Twice actually. Therefore our harsh Canadian winter can no longer be denied. It’s also Saturday.

You better beware.

(Of the Icky-Sticky Bear!)

Theo_icon

 

A Mossy Monday

IMG_0050

A Mossy Monday

Because we’re not that into winter as of yet. Can you smell the denial? As much as we enjoy fall we don’t care too much for the season that comes after. Oh well!

Theo_icon

Kill the Beast?

Seldom do I tell this; I have mixed feelings concerning this story, and many more reasons why I should not be telling you. 

IMG_0084

Kill the Beast?

I was hunting with a friend that fall; it was deer season, and I wanted to get that buck. The buck. My friend and I both agreed: it was the biggest thing we’d ever seen. The animal was a giant.

We were camped out in the bush for about three days (the plan was to stay for a week) when my friend saw it. It was getting dark but the stag was out grazing in a field just a little way from the herd. I cocked my rifle and pulled the trigger. There was no hesitation. Just a shot which ripped through the silence.

The herd scattered, but not before we saw the stag stumble. I had got it. Still, the animal bounded off with the rest, disappearing into the forest.

My friend and I both got up and began to head in the same direction. We’d like to say we weren’t in a hurry, but that animal was strong; we intended to tire it out. And whoever reached the body first got to keep the rack.

We half-walked, half-ran across the field; when we reached the forest we found the stag. It was hobbling down an old hiking trail. The animal turned around to face us, but that only caused it to fall down on its front legs. Wide-eyed, we watched as its body began to change–that’s the only way I can describe it–its entire body was melting and reforming itself. Like liquid.

Afraid, we stood rooted to the spot. The thing took short, beleaguered breaths throughout. Now it was like a man, a titan. I’m sure it would have killed us. Its jaws were like that of a wolf, big enough to crush a man’s skull . . .

“Oh shit!” I heard my friend mutter under his breath.

The beast growled at us. But it was dying, weakened by the loss of blood. A tar-coloured river poured freely down its left side. If it were any other way, we would have been dead.

Two owlish eyes turned to me–I could see its ire, a hot smouldering fire . . . It knew.

The next thing I remembered was my friend shaking me. Somehow we had made it back to the city; I don’t recall the journey back, and to this day my friend refuses to speak of it. While my friend refuses to do hunting of any kind, I still go out from time to time. Alone, and never in the same spot twice.

Vaguely I wonder if the beast is still alive.

Should I have killed it?

Should I have put it out of its misery?

Theo_icon

Beneath the Rippling Mirror

On the other side of the river there is the tower, and the town surrounding it.

The River

Beneath the Rippling Mirror

Whenever he looked at the far-away tower, he felt a terrible longing for it. It always left him dissatisfied with his life after it had passed. Who were the people who inhabited it–those mysterious beings who seemed to be like him, but were not? Were it not for the river, he would have found out by now.

As it was, he was here. On the opposite bank with no hope of crossing.

The river itself was a strange beast. No animals came near the water, but he could never figure out why. Something was wrong, but he could never figure out what.

He stood away from the shore, looking out across the great expanse of water. The tower beckoned to him, but the river mocked him. His heart twisted itself into a knot of varied emotions, each one warring with the other. It had been years, and he still couldn’t understand why he felt this way. The urge to know burned at him.

But was it worth the knowing? Ultimately, the tower meant crossing the river.

Ultimately, that meant knowing the river.

Was it worth it?

A rather pitiful sigh escaped him. In defeat he crawled back to his den. For now, the river would wait, as it always had.

Theo_icon

 

Fungus

Fungus.

Fungus

Just kidding. Fungi. Know why? ‘Cause it’s Friday! Okay.

(And seeing two is practically a party in your eye balls . . . )

Oddly enough, we have no mushroom pictures.

Theo_icon 

The Demon of the Tree

The Demon of the Tree

IMG_0668

*This story contains subject matter which some may find disturbing.* **Please read at your own risk.** Continue reading