This is my Terror Tuesday for this week. Robert Schantz is not having a good day. Then again, it might be evening. It appears that the sun has a difficult time shining where our writing friend is . . .
GHOST NO MORE
The spinning stops. My mind returns to normal; as normal as it gets for me. Reality and fiction seem indiscernible at times. Things that shouldn’t be happening do, and the other way around.
This Prophet thing is overwhelming. To my readers, it will be a grand story. But what happens, what will they think, when scenes from my novel are lived out, when the novel becomes non-fiction?
I’m lying on the floor, inches away from my windows. There is no broken glass, no blood on the carpet. It is as if nothing happened to me mere minutes ago. And yet . . .and yet, it did.
There are no monsters at my window, but the visual remains within my head. Even more: I feel the pain from where the claws dug into me. It was real, but it wasn’t. Paradox after paradox flits through my mind, telling me what I need to write.
I have written the first book. There are more to come. And this time, the truth will be told. No supposed theologians will muddle up the mix with which books belong to this Bible.
Shit! I need another beer. Something big is getting ready to happen. I feel it, and while I should know what’s going to occur, I really don’t. This is new. The next book : that’s what this is a part of.
* * * *
A number of years back, the PTSD was bad . . . bad beyond any imagination. I couldn’t sleep or eat. People stared at me. Damn it! I knew they were! But the shrinks didn’t believe me. Fools. They were fools.
The long-haired shrinks at the VA started off easy: a little medicine at the beginning. That wasn’t too bad, but they gradually increased the dosage until I started feeling like a full-blown Zombie. Damn it all to Hell! I wrote about Zombies; I didn’t want to become one. Yes, their plan was clear to me, even as out of it as I was-if I was just going through the motions of eking out an existence, I wouldn’t be doing harm to myself or any one else. But even more, it meant that their job would be easier. Forget about us. We didn’t matter. They needed their fat fucking pay check and cozy life-style.
One day they went over the line and had me start a series of “group” meetings. It would be me, the other Zombies, and one shrink. Just a nice little confab of the mindless. It didn’t stay that way for long, though. One of the attendees wore a dress to every meeting. He was a guy. I’m open minded and all, and I don’t have a prejudiced bone in my body-live and let live, I say-but it was his air of superiority that pissed me off. One day he wore a black, strapless evening gown and strutted around like a peacock, even with huge tufts of chest hair poking out from everywhere. This was his key to 100% disability, and he played his hand well. The shrinks went for it big time.
I didn’t. He called me a weasel-faced pussy and I cold-cocked the bastard right after I tore out a few handfuls of his chest hair and shoved them down his throat. The shrink tried to stop it, but I sent him to the floor as well. Next thing I knew, I was surrounded by the crazy docs running around all over the place but having the security folk quell my disobedience.
The next six months were spent in the psycho ward at the Sheridan, Wyoming VA. Around the clock, I was watched. My guess is I was being monitored when I took a shit even. But I put up with their crap, knowing that I was stronger than them. They couldn’t break me. My will was the strongest.
That’s when the voices started talking to me, telling a story that had me spellbound. At first I thought I “was” stark-raving mad, but then I pieced things together.
There was no way I was going to write any of this down while I was in the hospital. They already thought I was loony-tunes. This would have further strengthened their beliefs.
Six months later, I walked out the doors, “cured,” every bit as sane as the next man. Heh, heh. Yeah, right.
I bought my beautiful Willy’s Jeep in town, and headed to the mountains for awhile to clear my head of the nonsense of the last half year. Winding up on an Indian Reservation did wonders for me. I’m 1/4th Cherokee and was able to accept the Spartan way of living of these fine people. They knew what I wanted and allowed me to rediscover myself. Regretfully, I left and returned to New York to get back to work and write my masterpiece.
* * * *
With each beer, I see more and more of the evils being played out: giant Nephilim battling and destroying their puny little foes and then feasting on them in an attempt to sate their voracious appetites; demons such as the ones who feasted on poor John just an hour or so ago; Mongol Hordes attacking modern soldiers with wild abandon, seemingly at a huge disadvantage because of inferior weaponry, but because of their ferocity and drive, they are actually cutting the opposing forces down. In my mind, Satan is winning.
Just when it looks as if God is getting his shorts handed to Him, Joan of Ark, that diminutive little French spitfire, arrives and starts kicking some demon ass. What a way she has with the sword: her blows are true, and for someone of her size, she manages to create a lot of strength. The monstrous half Angel/half human beasts turn tail and run. When the Mongol hordes hit from the flank, Joan charges at them straight down the middle, rallying God’s demoralized troops who are now getting an adrenaline rush. The Archangel Michael closes in from behind, and the invading Mongolians are slaughtered.
I am looking at some new scenes flashing before me. Obviously, there is going to be more than just one Demon Rift novel. But still, the significance of why the story must be told and why I am the messenger is a mystery. Even though I feel like a Prophet of sorts, telling my readers what is to come, the story is being told in horror novels. Why that genre? The big hype is sure to push the book sales, but who is going to believe this to be the truth?
Then again, who would believe me if I was dressed in sack cloth and carrying a sign around on the streets of the city?
Obviously, the Dark side wants this story told. John’s death is proof of that. But what about the side of light and goodness?
The storm worsens, almost as if the rift has opened and is thrusting some of the mayhem out into this plane of existence. But I see nothing attacking the inhabitants of the city, scurrying around frantically in an attempt to get out of the pouring rain and remove themselves from the threat of being zapped by one of the many lightning strikes. God is at work here too, showing the minions who is in charge.
I grab another beer and slide into my Lazy Boy, watching the early morning light attack the canyons of the city. But the sky is so dark that for all practical intents and purposes, it might as well be night. I bask in the glory of it all, relishing my little perch where I can see the city splayed before me. In a way, I feel like I’m some sort of a puppet master, controlling the strings of those beneath me. It’s a heady feeling. I enjoy the rush to my brain.
Even when the big money starts rolling in, I have no intention of leaving this place. I am secure here. I love the way the total familiarity of the city is present. Why should I leave?
My thoughts wander to that evil bitch of an ex of mine. She’s going to be front and center, trying to grab some of my wealth, claiming that my children should share in the profits. Maybe they should, but what’s to stop her from grabbing some of the loot herself? Nothing. That lazy, good-for-nothing that she calls her soul-mate would jump at the chance of never having to work another day in his life. This isn’t about those two. My lawyer can handle the money for my kids. My divorce settlement was quite explicit as to what the financial arrangements were to be.
I have to laugh. Regardless of what she tries, it will come to naught anyway. My children will be back with me in no time. Demon Rift says so. Her personal apocalypse is on the horizon. Too bad for her. But I have no control in the matter, and she wouldn’t believe me if I told her anyway.
I'm not going anywhere until tomorrow. While my mind still appears to be sharp. I have had too many beers. It’s imperative that I am in full control of my faculties when I speak to him.
It will be retribution day for Jack. By then he will have heard the news. I wonder what his reaction will be. Poor, befuddled man: he won't piece the connection. He will be completely shocked when I tell him what I want. To him, the big question will be" Why? Why now? That bastard will do some growing up tomorrow. He won't take the same road that John went down; I have plans to use his sorry little ass for my own good. Don't get me wrong: he will pay a heavy price for his part in all of this, but the public will be far more convinced that I am the true author of my story if Jack owns up to it. He'll become my slave, doing whatever I tell him. Why? The one thing that controls the actions of most people: fear. He will fear for his life; now and forever. He will know that Robert Schantz is controlling the cards. The deck is completely stacked in my favor. A royal- flush to Mister Schantz. Jack won't even draw a pair.
All this nasty shit runs through my mind, making me run all the evil stuff around. But yet, there are other things coming into focus, as well. I feel some good. The positive is hitting me. A sort of relaxation crawls over me. It doesn't negate the fact that what will happen tomorrow with Jack is still going to happen, but it lets me know that God is using me as well as the Devil. And this time, I'm seeing the good side of God, a side that wants me to work towards the light. However, the evil will not completely release its hold on me.
A huge bolt of blue lightning hurtles down from the sky, engulfing everything in bright light. The warm fuzzies from a mere moment ago are gone. Terror rips through me as once again. I am plunged deep within another story, another chapter in the next book.
The light vanishes as fast as it arrived, and once more everything is pitched into total darkness. My skin crawls in anticipation of what is to come. Thunderclaps surround me from every direction, but . . . but there is no more lightning to precede them. What could possibly be their source?
The building shakes as if caught in the throes of a giant earthquake, my penthouse loft whipping around like a poorly built tree-house set up in the skimpiest of trees. My recliner moves towards the huge window, teasing me with each little movement it makes, getting ever closer to the edge.
Damn! I just woke from a cataclysmic dream that wasn’t a dream but which occurred nonetheless. And now another scenario, just as horrific, attacks my senses, this one being eerier in a way because I can see absolutely nothing.
Layers of black envelop everything. Shadows move about the room, only discernible in this total absence of light because of their overwhelming heaviness, pushing on me, telling me they are there.
Everything . . . everything is shoved out of the room by a force so strong I’m unable to breathe. Closer it comes, zeroing in on me, intent on getting as near me as possible. My head rocks in confusion, approaching blacking out from oxygen deprivation.
So close. I am powerless to resist . . .