Estimated reading time — 11 minutes
My name is Edward Thubbard and I recently killed my father. Now, before I am plagued with judgements of self-righteous proclivities allow me to first explain the circumstances surrounding my actions and in exchange I will permit you solicited judgements. I lived in a small town called Thusdale with my family which consisted of my mother, father and younger sister. We lived a very modest life as my family was desultory to pecuniary interests. Our home was a 19th century house, in the 21st century. It stood at the peak of a steep hill neighbored by vast meadows and prairies. Both I and my sister were schooled at home with the help of my parents. My father was an eccentric, wielding a variety of skills that ranged from carpentry to amateur astronomy, the latter of which will be of great significance later. My mother was a typical housewife. She cooked, cleaned, and soothed the family’s restless needs.
My father had been very docile and uninterested in wishful imaginings. But one day, it all changed. I stress to remind you that not only were my parents dispassionate, but I also shared those similar traits. My days consisted of trivial chores and enforced literary studies as my mother always wanted me to be a poet. But one night, something happened that would alter my entire kindred tradition, forever.
The day was as every other. But when I submitted myself to the nights slumber I underwent the most vivid fantasy. I appeared in a vast realm of sand and began slowly and involuntarily approaching a prodigious structure. The grandeur of the entire vista was coruscating. Soon my body halted and I experienced euphoric feelings of ethereal incipience. I smelled the aromatic winds and watched as they formed into prepossessing vortices, and watched the vortices transform into numerous spectral intricacies. The dream although untethered bore a striking resemblance to reality. But the entire preface was a presage. I was still confined in awe, when suddenly in a flash I was transported to a dark void. When a lambent light shone, I found myself forlorn in a cryptic catacomb, entombed in a prison of prisms. When I tried to move I was once again transported instantaneously, but to my relief it was to my house. I was standing outside by the porch, and unconsciously throwing rocks down the meadow. After a short while I noticed a glimpse of what appeared to be my sister, running perilously towards the house and gripping her finger in agony. She ran to me and explained that she had hurt herself while playing in the woods. I looked down at her bloodied hands and just as I grimaced, I woke up.
The next morning I gathered my entire family and told them of my dream, but they all brushed it off as unimportant and continued their accursed daily endeavors. They were completely unfazed, so much that I myself began to believe that the dream was the by-product of the emotional distress that accompanied adolescence. But exactly Ten days later, we were all proven wrong.
The day had gone by slowly as usual when I found myself idle and thoughtlessly resolved to go outside and toss rocks down the prairie. Then the unimaginable occurred. I noticed a glimpse of my sister from afar, and this time I was certain it was her for she was wearing the exact dress she wore in my dream. I waited in impatient trepidation, hoping that the impending scenario was not that of my unconscious fantasy. She approached me, and to my shock, her fingers were bleeding. Then she spoke the same exact words that she previously said in my dream. In a bittersweet state, I escorted her back to the house to get her wound cleaned and bandaged.
When we entered the house my parents were seated in the living room having one of their very frequent arguments. Without uttering a word, the sight of my sister’s bloodied hands immediately halted their quarrel and sent my mother into a worried paroxysm, and sent my father into complete stupor. The shock was not only a result of the blood, but of the occurrence of my revelation. My sister was attended to and went directly to bed. That night our home was silent, with all its tenants lost in dazzled fascination at my unwandered phenomenon. For me the night was sleepless. I laid outside on the grass, staring at the sky until the stars conceded to dawn. As the sun came up my family awoke as though all risen by the same fancy. I rose to find them awaiting me in front of the house. They all stood in a serene unity almost as if they had shared a prior surreptitious conversation. I walked up to them in inquiry and my mother began by revealing that they had discussed my recent happening and concluded that it was most decisive to use my great talent to assist the family through financial means. A request which was very untraditional, but not unreasonable. I agreed, and for months and years to come I assisted my family through every capable means. With intense practice I was able to form an acute understanding of the methods in which my dreams operated. I predicted many things. Impending dangers, lottery tickets, and an innumerable array of both fortunate and unfortunate events. I also learned most importantly that only once every Ten days would my dreams foretell reality.
For myriad twilights I had forbidden dreams. Dreams of horror, fears of macabre, strident night skies of immemorial collage. Years went by, and the nature of my dreams changed from wondrous to narrative. Although we were now much more fiscally untroubled, my family’s lifestyle remained unchanged with the exception of my father who had developed a very peculiar interest in astronomy. So much so that he had given up most of his other interests and begun to neglect his daily duties. He would spend entire days and long nights staring through his telescope which he had purchased through means which my talents provided. He became so submerged in the ocular device that my mother began to worry. His efforts were so indefatigable that he seemed to have abandoned all social interaction with us.
Months had gone by when on an unfaithful night of my mystic sleeps I experienced the most insidious spectral peregrination. I dreamt that my father had killed my entire family and I, being the only survivor would stab him with a knife through his back to his death. The dream disturbed me to such an extent that I scarcely ate for days, my mind inhabited by portent thoughts. The following days were of complete misery. My nights were entirely dreamless, and my days, dream-filled. I resented to inform anyone of my dreams, but the days of hysteria began to take its toll as we approached the inevitable tenth day.
A week had passed, and with only three days left, I had noticed very little change in my father’s demeanor. This gave me much needed solace, and I decided it would be of no harm to share the contents of my dream with my little sister. I approached her furtively and told her everything, urging her to remain imperturbable for the likeliness of my revelations were very little. A conjecture which I had paltry belief in myself. I traversed the day watchfully and when night came, the inception of my fear arose. It was almost midnight, and my sister had not returned from her daily outdoor recreation. This was incredibly strange because my sister had a very strict curfew of sundown. A curfew which she followed with devoted asceticism. It was also a great shock because I had just informed her of my dream. My hope was that all the consternation I underwent was just puerile superstition. I informed my parents of her disappearance and they both had abstract reactions. My father seemed greatly distressed, but my mother showed a surprising sign of assertive tranquility. She said she was confident that her daughter would soon return, while my father…….
Hours passed without her return and the house was now in abject pandemonium. We all grabbed flashlights and commenced an arduous search around the entire surrounding area, a search that would produce no results. We returned almost at dawn, and my father convinced us to remain stolid and relent from informing the police until we were able to ascertain the nature of her disappearance. We sat in pensive unity, when after an enduring wait I decided to take the search into my own hands. I felt that because we had searched at night it was much more difficult to find her, and some paths were too burdensome to traverse. So I egressed unannounced, to the woods.
I searched for long hours, soon to submit to failure when a pungent miasma led me to a small area behind an oak tree. I sidled prudently to investigate the origin of the odor. To my utter shock, I found the dismembered head of my sister laying lifeless by the tree. My mind rummaged frantically in a motionless frenzy as I tried to discern the origin of the monstrosity that had been made of my sibling. Her countenance bore a truly solemn misexpression. I grimaced when I noticed a profusion of blood flux incessantly from her cervical area in an almost unnatural pattern, and I struggled to ascertain how a human head could produce such an abundance, especially after what I believe was such a long period of time. The entire image left me so transfixed that the greatest horror of all eluded me. Oh the horror! As my eyes tilted away from the incomplete carcass I looked up at a high branch of the tree to find the additional parts of her body swaying in a seated position and restrained by a tight rope as though she was a headless Mephistophelian creature. Her skin was incredibly pale and appeared nearly bloodless, her clothes were scarlet and entirely bloodied, and her head, absent. I briskly descended back to my house to inform my parents of my findings. On arrival, I found the house empty and resolved to lay in wait for their return. I tell you, the few inane hours seemed infinite. All the thoughts that accompanied me during that solitary period were sinister and ominous. Who killed my sister? Why? And what was the motive behind that ritualistic evince?
Later that night my mother and father returned. They made their ingress with an ecstatic zest that was sure to be made somber by my revelations. As I spoke, my father’s visage remained indifferent, and my mother’s had a serene expression that worried me. Immediately, the police were called. The detective, joined by a team of forensic scientists investigated the entire surrounding area, and concluded that they would have to report the incident as a federal crime and pursue further query. ‘Further query’ A term I had heard the police use much too often. As I earlier prefaced, I live in a very small town. A town so desolate that it rests in an abnormal solitude. My greatest surprise of the day wasn’t of my sister, but of how the forensic scientists had successfully made their way here. I trusted my belief that the entire display the police had made was simply theatre, a show, a facade to give us the impression that they were competent at their duty. A belief which was later confirmed. A long day of endless investigation and inquisition led to nothing but added stress for everyone, although quite strangely my mother seemed to be taking the entire situation much better than both I and my father. Later that night I approached my mother singularly with mirth at how she was handing her emotional state. I was almost too dolorous to reveal to her the secrets which I held. But reluctantly I confided in her all there was to know about my ‘nightmare’ (a term which until now I refrained from using). Her reaction was expected, and her entire composure was altered. She warned me not to mention a word of it to my father and also revealed that she had noticed cursorily disheartening changes in my father’s nocturnal behavior. During the day he appeared perfectly placid, but at night he had apparently developed a profound drudgery in his astronomical wanderlust. My father would seemingly undertake long conversations with himself through the night, while staring at the stars through his accursed telescope. The contents of his garrulous rambles were puzzling. They ranged from lascivious comments, to lusts of sexual violence. From loquacious praises of strange deities, to eldritch chants of occultist rites. My mother also claimed that she had once caught him pleasuring himself sexually while uttering incoherent and almost indiscernible sentences. Some of what she was able to decipher from his bizarre spewings was a name which he repeatedly yelled. “Julia, Julia my star” he would say. This was very odd, because my mother’s name was not Julia, and neither I nor she had any idea what the provenance of that name was. He would say her name in light of numerous praises and cosmic blandishments. His duplicitous maquillage had thankfully been discovered by my mother, the only person in the house who seemed somewhat sublunary that night.
I retired to bed soon after, with my mother reassuring me that she would talk some sense into my father, and hopefully even more sense into the police. I awoke with little zest, prepared to face another melancholic day. The dreaded ninth. My few waking seconds were languorous, but when I entered the living room I witnessed the most terrifying sight my iris had ever beheld. A sight so sour it defied my cognitive comprehension. A horror so abject it sent my mind into inexorable panic. The product of an evil, morbid, nefarious act. I awoke to find the decapitated head of my mother laying fallen on the dinner table, with my father sitting right next to it, enjoying his breakfast oatmeal. On each of the dinner chairs laid the grotesquely severed body parts of my dear matriarch, the one who bore me, my beloved mother! After a few perennial seconds my father looked up at me and said, “Edward, sit, please”. A request which I declined by dashing towards the front door as curtly as my capacity allowed. As I reached the door, I pulled with strength that I previously believed I was incapable of producing, but to my surprise, the door did not budge. Then I heard my father’s guttural voice yell out “it’s no use. Julia has sealed the door. We both cannot leave until the night of revelation”. Of course, the next day was the tenth, when the quintessence of my dreams would be realized. Then he said once more, “Edward, sit down, please. I have told you it is of no use. Destiny has already made its decision”.
I conceded to his request and joined him at the table, next to the abomination that was formerly my mother. My wretched father turned to me once more, then placed his hand on my mother’s head and said, “I want to tell you a story my son. If you will listen. The lore of a being from a period before time. Before kings, before gods, before even nothingness”. As he spoke, he gently stood up from his chair and slowly approached me. I had the urge to stand up and flee but I felt restrained by an insurmountable force. He trundled conspicuously towards me, and then surreptitiously behind me. I trembled at his ominous voice as he continued his impassioned speech. “Before the time of existence there existed a phenomenon. The great paradox. A thing, a thought, an occurrence, that existed before existence. Haha, my son, you are blessed with a great gift. Both you and your late mother. The gift of clairvoyance. But I have an even greater gift. Perhaps the most lustrous gift of all. I had the privilege to have not only met but also made love, to my star, Julia. The creation before creation. And now, through sacrifice, I will ensure her transcendence. Come with me Edward, to my room. Watch as I build an altar for my lover Julia’s return. We will remain at the altar until tomorrow night, the night of revelation”. As he said those words, I began following him involuntarily, to the room.
The room was completely different from what I remember. He had ridden the room of all its furniture and had erected a massive statue that was redolent of a Greek mythological creature. It was humanoid in nature, resembling a woman. The statue was so intricate and prodigious that I was puzzled at how he was able to transport it not only into the house, but into his room. The figure was incredibly ornate. How did he create that figure? Where did he get the materials to do it? And how was he able to accomplish this without anyone else’s knowledge? Night came, and I sat at the corner of his room transfixed as I watched my father complete the dreaded altar. It now began to appear even more grotesque than it had previously looked. He had included the body parts of my sister and mother, and did some other things which I will not mention for the images are much too abject.
It was the final day. The day of culmination. My father had left the room only once to provide breakfast for me. A meal which I reluctantly accepted, but briskly consumed. He himself had not eaten since his infernal breakfast the day before. We sat in solemn silence until night approached, when he suddenly arose and said “it’s time”. He unveiled a large knife and placed it behind him, in my view. He then turned to me for what was the last glimpse I saw of my living father and said “My son. Watch, as I reveal to you the true meaning of life, the true meaning of love, Alas”. Then he got on his knees, facing the statue and began reciting an evil doctrine of malign rites. I waited and watched for almost an hour, when suddenly a dark mass began to form around the statue, slowly revealing its presence. I watched the dark mass phantasmagorically transmogrify into a horrific celestial nightmare. The human species have yet to create a neologism which I can use to properly define that demonic creature. No attempt at description will truly do this monstrosity justice. It had a humanoid appearance and crimson skin. Its legs were of human hands, and its hands were of an obscure nature of innumerable limbs. And for what I regard as auspicious I did not see its face. For as soon as it began emerging I rushed to the blade behind my father and plunged it incessantly through this chest. The attack was so vicious that I have great doubt that his body will be shown in his casket, on the slight chance that he is given a burial. As my father fell, the creature slowly dissolved and returned to its heedless abyss. I laid on the bloody ritual ground in shock, fear, misery, and melancholy. Hopeless to what the future might present, and dreading the night’s upcoming dream.
The malevolent being had manipulated my father with perfidious promises of perennial solace. A promise which the evil would undoubtedly have failed to uphold.
Credit: Mr. Zonic