Monday, May 27, 2013

Zombie Eschatology : 101 (My Version)



ZOMBIE ESCHATOLOGY


APOCALYPSE: (Courtesy of Wikipedia):

An apocalypse (Ancient Greek: ἀποκάλυψις apocálypsis, from ἀπό and καλύπτω meaning 'un-covering'), translated literally from Greek, is a disclosure of knowledge, hidden from humanity in an era dominated by falsehood and misconception, i.e., a lifting of the veil or revelation, although this sense did not enter English until the 14th century. In religious contexts it is usually a disclosure of something hidden. In the Revelation of John (Greek Ἀποκάλυψις Ἰωάννου, Apocalypsis Ioannou), the last book of the New Testament, the revelation which John receives is that of the ultimate victory of good over evil and the end of the present age, and that is the primary meaning of the term, one that dates to 1175. Today, it is commonly used in reference to any prophetic revelation or so-called End Time scenario, or to the end of the world in general.


ESCHATOLOGY: (Courtesy of Wikipedia)

/ˌɛskəˈtɒləi/ (from the Greek ἔσχατος/ἐσχάτη/ἔσχατον, eschatos/eschatē/eschaton meaning "last" and -logy meaning "the study of", first used in English around 1550) is a part of theology, physics, philosophy, and futurology concerned with what are believed to be the final events of history, the ultimate destiny of humanity — commonly referred to as the "end of the world" or "end time".




PART ONE: Zombies: Apocalyptic Supernature or Virulent Biological Event?

I've coined the term "Apocalyptic Supernature" to assist in differentiating my opinions regarding the fictional undead outbreak and it's many different theories of origins. I define apocalyptic supernature as that part of zombie mythological eschatology that presents the idea that the origin of the event is something of a supernatural or religious nature.
Of course the majority of other theories can be categorized into, basically, biological anomalies usually based around some form of viral infection, radiation or engineered bio-weapon. These I incorporate into "Viral Theory".
 I'll be using movie & TV references only in this short article as to avoid some 'armchair biologist' from pointing out some odd real fact and totally derailing the purpose of talking about fictional zombies! Further, I'll be dealing with human undead only, as going into undead animals will also derail the discussion.
So, what defines a zombie? Well, it's actions of course, so let's distill down the essence of what a zombie is so we can better eliminate what it is not. (Again, I've noted the most frequently used depictions to ascertain these characteristics and not individual movies or TV series.)

Zombie Characteristics:
1- They're dead. 
2- They're recently deceased.
3- They feed on human flesh and animals.
4- They have very limited intellect & virtually no reasoning abilities.
5- They seem have simple motorized instinct, with some residual memories of life.
6- They cannot communicate with each other.
7- They can shamble quickly, but cannot run due to deterioration of the muscular-skeletal system.
8- A bite can expedite death & conversion to the undead.
9- They can be stopped by various methods en masse, i.e. firebombing a horde, but generally destroying the brain or separating it from it's body will stop the individual zombie. (I'll get around to living heads later.)
10- Anyone who dies will come back as a zombie, bitten or not.
So, we have now set the basic, most used 'rules' in media for depicting the undead. Lets take a look at each individually now and see what adds up.
1- They're dead.
     Yep, zombies are dead people alright. An infected living human may exhibit symptomatic signs of zombie behavior, but they're simply infected humans. So, despite some very good movies being made depicting infected humans, they are not considered zombies for the simple fact that they are not dead. This zombie fact definitely supports the supernatural idea within the modern myth.
2- They're recently deceased.
     Zombies digging themselves up from their graves doesn't seem plausible or realistic, although many movies have depicted this scenario. Civil War zombies? Roman Centurion zombies? I would think that the bodies of such old corpses would literally be dust, especially the soft tissues and it would not be realistic or even believable that they would or could dig themselves up. This aspect of the zombie mythos could be a supportive idea for the bio-weapon or engineered viral theories of re-animation - as it affects those who die recently and are unburied.
     
3- They feed on living human flesh and animals.
       These zombies love to eat living flesh. Think about that for a moment. Living flesh. They do not eat each other or cold, dead flesh. Only the living have a target on their backs. This lends some credibility to the supernatural origins theory in that it pits the dead directly against living. How could a virus, be so philosophically specific in it's intentions?
4- They have very limited intellect & virtually no reasoning abilities.
     Zombies seem to display only the lowest intellectual capacities. They infrequently use objects such as rocks as bludgeons, but not to any degree that we would consider intelligent usage. They show no outward sign of problem solving capabilities, no sign of purpose (other than feeding), or any humanistic sign of intellectual progression at all- only de-evolution, both mental & social. This idea could go for either school of thought both apocalyptic supernature or biological.
5- They seem have simple motorized instinct, with some residual memories of life.
     This idea is directly connected to number four, in as much as it regards the use of the brain in connection with the central nervous system. However, residual memories would simply be mimicking normal human behavior and not a conscious individual thought. These creatures wander aimlessly, or lie dormant in various locations until their senses detect something that might indicate their instinctive drive to feed. Why these creatures appear to sit down, lie down, walk around in certain places is not known. This idea could also support either theory as well.
6- They cannot communicate with each other.

     The vast majority of depictions within the genre do not depict individual communication, either verbal or non-verbal, between the undead. With this said, they do have the capability of basic, guttural utterances -usually moaning. I've noted that the moaning can and most of the time does, reflect some sort of instinctual excitement within the undead individual. Example: a single, wandering zombie usually does not make a sound, however, once food is detected- the moan begins and can escalate almost into a louder verbalization approaching a scream. This is fascinating, as it may be indicative of some sort of emotional response. I mean, a hungry dog will growl to protect food, right? Isn't that a type of emotional, albeit instinctual, response? This raises more questions than it answers if much thought is put into it.
7- They can shamble quickly, but cannot run due to deterioration of the muscular-skeletal system.

     The general accepted theory concerning living dead locomotion is that the undead person cannot run as a living human would. I accept that for many reasons. The first of which is that the dead individual is constantly deteriorating, even if it seems the genre has imposed an unwritten rule that the decay has been slowed greatly. The deterioration alone ensure that dried muscles & tendons cannot perform efficiently. Further, no genre movie has ever addressed as to whether or not a zombie can derive any sustenance from what it ingests. If there is no metabolism present (which is obviously the case), then no nourishment can be processed and no energy provided to organs, muscles & tissues. This also connects into number 9, as we will see, that the primary motivational force within the creature is the brain and not the internal organs themselves. If there is no breaking down of the food, then in time the zombie will simply burst open. Which brings up the questions as to why zombies are always very skinny, despite the fact that if they gorge- they should at least be bloated up! This lends credence to the supernatural explanation, because even if a virus does re-start the brain- the brain alone cannot make organs, muscles & tissues move in such a behavioral manner. There must be another force at work in conjunction with a viral explanation at the very least, wouldn't you say?

8- A bite can expedite death & conversion to the undead.

   Ah, this is a doozey! I noticed this in every genre film that I've ever seen, if you get bitten by a zombie, you will die soon & turn into one yourself. That sounds like an infection spreading and lends validity to the viral theory. However, in most depictions, anyone who dies for any reason will turn. The exception being, of course, a person whose brain is damaged beyond re-animation was the cause of their death. Which is odd, as that suggests that everyone is infected with the re-animation virus before death. If that is the case, there can never be a cure. What is to be cured...death? No, the best case in that scenario is that the living could rid themselves of the virus which would prevent them from turning upon their death. What good is that? It certainly helps those in the immediate vicinity, but it doesn't do squat for the entire problem. The hordes will still be there, whether or not you're cured and you can't cure rotten & dead- even in this fictitious universe without sounding unrealistic.

9- They can be stopped by various methods en masse, i.e. firebombing a horde, but generally destroying the brain or separating it from it's body will stop the individual zombie. (I'll get around to living heads later.)

     The generally depicted and favored method for 'putting down' the undead is destroying the brain. OK, that suggests that the brain is the central control mechanism of this lifeless meat puppet, obviously. This raises the question that if it's a virus that reanimates, then it must only restart the brain and not the body or body parts individually. If it reanimates everything, then the undead subject could be dismembered and the parts would still move at the least. However, it's not generally depicted that way- "Head=Dead". So, when we see a zombies head chopped off and it continues to bite, but the body lies still- what does that mean to the viral theory? That scenario suggests that the brain alone is affected by the virus and the brain controls the decaying body.
10- Anyone who dies will come back as a zombie, bitten or not.

     Another staple of the zombie genre is that everyone that dies will turn into a zombie (except of course if you destroy the brain before turning). So, we can refer back to numbers 2 & 8. The most compelling genre rule, if you ask me. I, in turn, ask "why"? Why does everyone who dies return as a mindless creature? I've always preferred the Apocalyptic Supernature Theory, as it most easily explains the "why", without delving into some sort of techno-babble pseudo-science, which is just as silly as the supernatural explanation. See, with the Viral Theory, the very name suggests "cure". There's a cure. It's suggests a natural phenomena, something that mankind can wrap his intellect around and solve it. I don't like that. I like knowing that mankind doesn't have all the answers and there are things that happen for reasons that are unfathomable. Of course, a virus doesn't need a reason to exist but it does - but a virus has an origin, a biological origin. A definite starting point. The A.S Theory doesn't have or need that definite point- it simply starts. To me, that's more frightening.


As usual, these opinions are my own and we all know what opinions are like, don't we? I sat down and simply wrote this in one sitting, without note or research. If I have unwittingly left out something important or if you have a take on anything I have written about- please share it with me. I would love to connect!

Monday, May 20, 2013

TWD FIlming Update (5/20/2013)

Well, I went today in search of a filming location near Senoia, Ga and I found it! Unfortunately, the police has it blocked off and there's no vantage point in which to observe filming. It's on a side road very near the studio.

However, I did snap some video of a couple of places in Senoia where they are storing the Woodbury major set pieces and of the location.

The video of the location was very short, but I made two passes and screen grabbed 6 stills from the video to post on my Youtube channel "ThePhoenix6430" to use in my "Deadite Joe Show".

Here's a couple of screen grabs so you can see how well protected the filming has become compared to Season 3.




So, there you have it. There was an area just east of this pic that was marked for "Extras Parking", so that's a good sign: either zombies or more characters! That parking area is in addition to the number of vehicles you can see parked here on the side of the road. That's a lot of cars, especially to be so near the studio!

Check out the video in it's entirety on my Youtube Channel : "ThePhoenix6430"; it's "Deadite Joe Show #7"

Thanks & I'll post more as I'm able to catch them out on a better location!

-Joe

Friday, May 17, 2013

TWD Filming Update (5/17/2013)

Hey Everyone!

I'm beginning to get some intel in on some TWD filming locations for next week. I've not corroborated any of them yet, but I should have a clearer picture by the end of the weekend.

I've got some really good friends & some pretty reliable contacts that have come through more than once!

So, I'll be out scouting next week myself starting on Tuesday (if my info is correct.) Maybe I'll get lucky and hit them up on a remote shoot. If I do, as always, I'll take plenty of video and pics to post on my Youtube Channel (ThePhoenix6430).

It's really too early to release what I've got, because I really want to release only substantiated locations and activities - no more false alarms from me!

Next time there's an update on TWD, I'll get it posted ASAP!

Have a great weekend everyone!

-Nash

Thursday, May 16, 2013

"Star Trek Into Darkness" Review (5/16/2013) **SPOILERS**

STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS - REVIEW (5/16/2013)
 
 
 
 
I just got back from watching the newest installment, "Star Trek Into Darkness". My opinion will, of course, be biased as I have been a fan since 1975. So you are hereby warned...
 
 
I thought the film was fantastic. Great visuals, great characterizations, acting and although the plot was fairly simple, it was intriguing. Tons of Trek references, in-jokes, and surprises.
 
NOTE: I have now seen every Star Trek film on Release Day since December 7th, 1979! My tradition remains unbroken! Interpretation: Nerd Status Confirmed.
 
 Here are 12 things I liked about the film:
 
 
  1. The story incorporates all of the crew into their elements and it works. No one character seemed to be left out as has been the case in past Star Trek motion pictures.
  2. The action is fast paced and visually exciting.
  3. They actually took time in this installment to actually afford more character development.
  4. I didn't see not one lens flare! You can actually make out details on the Bridge this go round!
  5. They redesigned the Engineering Section - you only glimpse the "beer tanks" for a second or two. The matter/antimatter intermix chamber set is incredibly detailed and a welcomed addition.
  6. Peter Weller (Robocop) as Admiral Marcus was awesome and menacing.
  7. Cumberbatch was incredible in simply emanating menace and rage as Khan Noonien Singh.
  8. The dreadnaught starship was of an incredible design.
  9. The Klingons made an appearance! At least one took his helmet off so we could see the makeup! I think the design is pretty cool.
  10. The renderings of a 23rd century London & San Francisco were striking.
  11. "Spock Prime" makes a short, but immense cameo!
  12. The introduction of Carol Marcus played by Alice Eve.
 
Here are 12 things I didn't like about the film:
 
 
  1. Those Starfleet hats looks stupid. Really stupid.
  2. Are all Admirals in Starfleet crazy as hell?
  3. With all that 23rd century technology on Earth, it seemed that no one had the ability to detect two massive starships fighting in orbit, then falling into populated areas. With transporter technology, evacuation would have been easy- especially in the time allotted.
  4. 21st century technology could develop a genetically superior superman, but 23rd century technology couldn't? Adm. Marcus should have funneled all that money to making a superman instead of secretly building a huge space dock and dreadnaught around Jupiter (that no one noticed).
  5. The triad of Kirk, Spock, McCoy seemed lacking. It was more about Kirk & Spock.
  6. When did head squashing become Khan's signature move?
  7. Those stupid chromed Phaser pistols with a flipping barrel again.
  8. The dress uniforms look too stiff & heavy. I like the TMP colors; grey/white. But those dress uniform echo militarism, which is what as the movie clearly stated Starfleet is not! I refer you back to Number 1 in this list.
  9. The word "Shit" really isn't funny but once in a Star Trek movie.
  10. Spock is too emotional at times & also too cold at times. He's not found that balancing act between the two yet and it shows. A lovers quarrel with Nyota Uhura on a shuttle? It seemed almost like a damned episode of "Friends" for about two minutes.
  11. The sense of "explorers on a journey" was lacking in this film. If the first film was about Kirk "getting the captains chair" and this one was about him "keeping the chair" - why have so much emphasis on breaking the rules, only to not suffer the consequences?
  12. Too many crewmen get sucked out of hull breeches in these new Star Trek movies. What's up with that?
 
Despite my observances, I loved the new movie and I'll buy the Blu-Ray Collectors Edition when it comes out. Is it one of the best Star Trek movies to come down the pipe since it all began? You bet your ass! Is it the best movie ever? Not by a long shot! It is what it is: a fantastic Star Trek movie!


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

TWD Filming Update (5/14/13) - Part 2

Hi Everybody!

   Certain sources told me yesterday that the cast & crew would not be filming at the Griffin, Ga location at the abandoned Wal-Mart. The source stated that today was spent filming at the Prison set on the backside of Raleigh Studios in Senoia, Ga. (I have no reason to doubt this, as the crew did not return today to the aforementioned abandoned Wal-Mart.)

   This is actually good news, as my friend @mdp1503 was able to return to the "Big Spot" location during the day and take pictures unabated. She stated that there was no one around while she was there at all and saw no movement whatsoever. Below are a few of the pictures she has graciously allowed me to use in my blog. I'll comment on what I think are representational within the pictures. (Remember, conjecture based purely on photos is a tricky thing without having seen them film myself.)


This looks like some sort of survivor encampment, wouldn't you say?




The gate was wide open with a crew forklift and portable lights. No one was there.


 
The photographs above are used with permission from @mdp1503. Thanks!
 
 
The set dressing is definitely distressed more than usual as can be seen from the differentiating colors of the asphalt and the weathering of the vehicles. This is congruent with production stating that there will be another time-jump and it will be a longer one.
 
As soon as I can get finished with what I have to do in the next couple of weeks, hopefully the right opportunity will present itself (it will, trust me), then I will be able to go to a remote location myself and get some video & stills of the cast/crew in action like last year!
 
BTW, I also heard word from a Twitter friend that had been contacted by the Chief of Police in Griffin, Georgia (who had seen either the Twitter feed or my blog- not clear on that) who stated that the individual officer was not representational of the GPD and would like to know the name of the officer to ensure that the behavior exhibited would not be repeated! That is a great thing to hear, as it will ensure that the GPD will make sure it's officers are more public-friendly and especially- "fan-friendly" in any future location shooting. If anyone wishes to anonymously pass along the name of the officer, I will make sure that it gets to the appropriate person and the matter will be dealt with in such a manner as the officer will become aware of his actions (making him a better officer) and the source will remain totally anonymous.
 
Thanks again for reading and, as always, as soon as I get some news- you'll get it too!
 
-Deadite Joe
  

TWD Filming Update (5/14/13)

      

       Man, yesterday was a pretty eventful day for some fans watching the filming in Griffin, Georgia. I've gotten more than one report from fans there stating that the police were threatening to seize cameras from fans if they began taking pictures. I've talked to several fans who stated that one particular officer was very hateful and overly aggressive regarding phones & cameras.

      This upsets me greatly. There are many reasons why & I'll start by stating that I'm a retired Deputy Sheriff. I was in law enforcement for 11 years, six of which was spent as a Sergeant in Investigations - I even worked 3 years in undercover narcotics under a GBI ran Task Force. All of my career was spent in the West Georgia area. I understand the laws and I obey them.

Now, lets get down to business now that you, my friends, see that I know what I'm talking about.

"EXPECTATION OF PRIVACY"

A big question in determining whether your expectation of privacy is "reasonable" and protected by the Fourth Amendment arises when you have "knowingly exposed" something to another person or to the public at large. A man in a phone booth having a conversation: He does have a reasonable expectation of privacy in the sound of his conversation, but does he have had a reasonable expectation of privacy in his appearance or actions while inside the glass phone booth? No.

I would have to say that the production has foreknowledge that it is knowingly exposing itself AND the general public ( as evidenced by its own promotional materials/articles/interviews/press releases regarding production) and therefore it is afforded the same protection as any other person, business, etc to their privacy. In this case, it means that they have the same expectations of being readily observed by the public as well, just like any other person or business.



DISCLAIMER: "Just because you can do a thing, doesn't mean you must/should do that thing."

A law enforcement officer cannot seize your personal property, except under very specific conditions. Yesterdays circumstances was NOT one of those specific circumstances. Here's why:

In the Great State of Georgia, it is totally legal to take pictures & video wherever there is NO "expectation of privacy". (Police have dash cams & remote audio, remember? There are security cameras pointed in every direction, remember?) Things, people,and places, that are in the open field of view of the public can be photographed readily because they have no "expectation of privacy"; that is if you take the picture or video from a readily recognized public place. You cannot take pictures through windows of a place or structure as that violates their right to privacy.

EXAMPLE: You can drive down a State or County or City road, stop and take a picture of a house sitting in the middle of a field and it's legal. You cannot, however, go onto their property and take the picture, nor can you use telescopic attachments to aid your photographic intrusion into their expectation of privacy. That would be breaking the law and just plain creepy.

EXAMPLE: You're walking down the street and decide to take pictures of people doing the same. That's perfectly legal and you do not need their permission, because in public there is no "expectation of privacy".

EXAMPLE: If you're walking down a street that has visual access to another street that is blocked off for some reason, you can legally take unaided photos of whatever you can see from your public position.

EXAMPLE: If you see your favorite actor walking down the street, you can take all the pictures/video you want without permission. If they don't want their picture taken, then be respectful and don't do it- that only common sense and courtesy.

Yesterday, the production allowed fans to gather at a certain point near the production. So, they themselves placed fans in their own allowable and viewable situation. They knowingly and purposefully did this fully aware that fans would take pictures.

The question arises to me, now that we have set the stage, why did police threaten to take away cameras from the public in a place that was purposefully set up for fans to congregate and that the production knew they had a certain level of privacy? The answer lies with the officer.

The law says the seizure of property is only allowable under strict and specific circumstances. Well, the circumstances were already set by the production itself. What happens outside in the public area, with the exception of preventing illegal activity against the production/location & maintaining order of a crowd, is considered open and public. The law applies. There should have been no threat or removing of cameras from fans, unless fans were using telescopic lenses in which to violate the productions right to privacy.

Unless, there are extenuating circumstances that I have not yet been made aware of, there is no reasonable explanation for law enforcement to threaten such action within those set of circumstances.

I'll delve more into this issue later.

Remember, this is not a recommendation for going nuts on the concept. I present it as my own opinions regarding the interpretation of Georgia law and the circumstances as they were relayed to me.

TRANSLATION: IF YOU'RE NOT SURE ABOUT SOMETHING, DON'T DO IT.

Monday, May 13, 2013

TWD FIlming Update (5/13/13)

Hey Folks!

This week I haven't been able to get over to any of the filming locations, but luckily for me (and vicariously for you) I have a couple of good friends who live almost a rocks throw away from the abandoned Wal-Mart location being used in Griffin, Georgia.

LOL, I love how the TWD crew named the store "Big Spot"...lmao.

My "secret agent" is @mdp1503 on Twitter. Aw, cover has been blown!!!!!!!

Not only has she graciously offered to check things out for me, she was able to sneak a few pictures of which a few will appear below. She is going back tomorrow to check things out some more. Anyway, here's what she had to say to about today.

(1)- They are being SUPER cautious about photographs being taken so, she had to surreptitiously obtain what she got.

(2)- While there, she heard multiple gunshots from the interior of the building and some from possibly the roof.

(3) - She heard talk from other fans that Steven Yeun was there, but she didn't see anyone that was recognizable during her time near the set.

(4)- There was a lot of fans there trying to do the same thing as she was! LOL!

I know that when TWD films in such a public place, there's always a TON of people. That's why I hit the outer location shoots- ya know, the ones out in the middle of nowhere. That way there's hardly anyone there!

OK, so my 'secret agent' is going in for more tomorrow - so we'll get some more information. She also has a very devious plan for obtaining a better, more secretive spot to view & take pics! I told her, "be sneaky, but don't break the law or piss 'em off!"

 Hey, that's what I do! It's good advice, really! :)

Remember, in Georgia, there's 'plain view', you can photograph anything or anyone as long as they in such as place as to not have an expectation of privacy. So, if it's out in the open- (even on private property - as long as you take the pic from a public place and its plainly out in the open) -it's fair game.

OK- Here's some pics from todays Griffin location. I don't have any info yet regarding the Coweta County unit shoot today....yet!



 
Check out the fans, showing up on a Monday!


 
@mdp1503 stated that this was about the best vantage point and as close as one could get during filming.





All of these photos are courtesy of  @mdp1503 and cannot be used without her permission. Thank you for everything @mdp1503!!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

TWD Filming Update (5/12/13)

Hi everyone!

Just thought I'd drop a note about the ongoing filming of TWD. As we all know by know, they are filming in the abandoned Wal Mart in Griffin, Ga for a couple days next week (I don't know exactly for how long) & also in some wooded areas about the county, but good luck on seeing those wooded shoots. They usually shut down a long stretch of road and post deputies on each end far from the actual filming location.

The best bet would be the old Wal Mart, but I bet there'll be a ton of autograph hounds there- so I'm gonna pass.

I'm gonna hit up production a little later on when they're out on location in Coweta County. There will be a lot less folks present and the likelihood that the cast can stick around a little longer to chat & take pics.

Alright,

Have a great Mothers Day !

-Joe


Saturday, May 11, 2013

"Island of Dagon" Annotations & Behind my research!

NUMERICAL ANNOTATIONS:
 
 
 
In writing this short story, I didn't just pull things out of thin air (well, some I did) and I did quite a bit of research regarding the time period, military operations, customs, etc in order to ensure an amount of realism within the format. I did throw in quite a few nods to other media and a lot of silly references just for my own amusement. What follows are the numerical annotations for the story , "The Island of Dagon".

(1)-Keeping the tone of many of Lovecraft's stories, I kept it in the narrative form. Further, I began to vaguely reference many Lovecraft's inventions, The Old Ones, The Necronomicon, Book of Eibon, etc. The nameless narrator, also like many HPL characters predict their own demise by mysterious forces.

(1A)- Referring to Miskatonic University in Arkham, Massachusetts, a fictional town created by Lovecraft first being mentioned in the story, "The Picture in the House".

(2)- Lemuria, often associated with the lost continent of Atlantis, but not the same. Historical evidence suggests it existed between 900,000 BC and 25,000 BC.

(3)- A tip of the hat to Prof. Raymond Knowby of the "Evil Dead" series of motion pictures by Sam Raimi.

(4)- "unsavory lot", making direct reference to Americans distaste towards the Japanese during WW2. Internment camps of Japanese-Americans were widely used on the West Coast out of fear and bigotry.

(5)- USAT Etolin was a real ship and did make these runs from those locations during the time period of this story.

(6)- Ujelang is an isolated island atoll of the Marshall Islands.

(7)- This makes the Etolin leaving San Fran on 7-14-43.

That makes the arrival time at Ujelang would be 7-24-43- based upon her top speed being 17 knots and the Marshall Islands being about 4025 nautical miles from San Fran= 10 days.

(8)- These names, of course, all being mixes of various Lovecraft characters.

(9)- A reference to the 1940's radio series "The Shadow". Cranston was secretly the superhero "The Shadow".

The opening tag: "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows."

(10)- "Thule Gesellschaft" - a real German occult book of the Thule Society.

(11)- This ties our story into the Cthulhu Mythos and also separates it by establishing that this expedition and university is not Miskatonic University in Arkham, Massachusetts.

(12)- "it's construction", referring to some descriptions of the Necronomicon being bound in human
(or other?) skin and possibly inked in blood. The narrator thought it was kept in certain conditions
for preservation reasons and not because the book is actually a threat to mankind.

(12A)- Hunters Point Shipyard was an actual WW2 yard in San Fran, where the USAT Etolin sometimes docked.

(13)- A reference to 'Dracula', who had to be transported in earth from Transylvania by ship. Here, the unknown thing in the crate is hinted at having to live in sea water or other fluid.

(13A)- "...from Innsmouth", a reference to Lovecraft's "The Shadow over Innsmouth".

(14)- A Lovecraft staple, roughly meaning "Cthulhu sleeps" or "Cthulhu Lives" depending on the source.

Pronounced 'ee-ya', 'ee-ya', 'kut-thool-hoo fot-hog-gen' or close to it!

(15)- Another accurate historical event near Ujelang Island.

(16)- The only building on Ujelang, to this very day, is an 1880's German capros building. (Not a temple!) It was a corporate building for 'capros', or coconut juices and meats!

(16A)- "unperceivable multiplicity"- The dark mans voice was almost several voices, similar to Christ's question to the possessed man in the Holy Bible, to which the man responded, 'We are Legion."

(17)- "Esoteric Order of Dagon": the religious cult worshipping the "Old One" Dagon, a Biblical fish-man-god.

Sometimes, the others of Dagons ilk may have been called "The Deep Ones", "The Ancient Ones",
"The Dark Ones"- it seemed that HPL himself was not consistent. I prefer the "Old Ones". Though,
perhaps in this story, I should have used "The Deep Ones"- as it mostly focuses on Dagon.

(18)- The carven images were to represent the Old Ones influence and interaction with mankind during the ages.

(19)- Phillips is a spawn of selective breeding between Dagon and humans in Innsmouth.

(20)- This, of course, was the Lovecraft story, "The Call of Cthulhu".

(21)- This furthers the idea that the denizens of Innsmouth are still interacting with Dagon, bearing offspring.

(22)-"...man ever existed"...suggesting that the Old Ones arrived on a primal, young and unformed Earth.

This re-enforces my idea in this story that they are aliens possessing powers that are simply beyond our current comprehension and not gods.

(23)- "foul seed...etc". Mankinds DNA influenced by sexual interaction with the Old Ones.(Shadow over Innsmouth) Also, "sensitive few"- referencing that the dream calls of the Old Ones were most
likely received by those humans that were of highly developed artistic interests- sculptors, painters,
writers, etc. (Call of Cthulhu)

(23A)- I suggest that there are persons unknown at Miskatonic to be involved in the occult.

(24)- Lovecraft often referred to WWI as 'The Great War'. I continue it's usage here. All of Lovecrafts fiction were written before his death in 1937- so there would be no other Great War to compare to.

(25)- Lovecraft's blobish, shapeshifters were called "shoggoths", an idea planted here by description alone.

(26)- "non bipedal locomotion", furthering the idea that it was a shoggoth in the crate.(At the Mountains of Madness)

(27)- A tip of the hat to another great Lovecraft story about inter-dimensional living things "From Beyond".

(27A)- A reference to Stuart Gordons movie "Castle Freak", loosely based on Lovecraft's 'The Outsider'.

(28)- A reference to Stuart Gordons movie "Dagon", where the high priest uses golden knives for human sacrifices.

(28A)- I'm hinting that the bigger room was used for skinning of the victims and the alter room was the final destination of whatever devilish ritual was being performed.

(29)-A nod to Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Spock uses this phrase referring to luring Khan into the Mutara Nebula.

(30)- A reference to Sam Raimi's "Army of Darkness" deleted windmill scene.

(31)-A reference to Lovecrafts legendary, "..then again the stars shall be right..."

(32)-Spartans, of course, were legendary fighters- known for ruthlessness and ferocity during battles.

(32A)- Several Lovecraft characters find a fate where thier bodies are melted, decimated beyond recognition, etc.

(32B)- A lot of Lovecrafts characters seem to die of fright, so I felt we needed one here!

(32C)- Yet another Lovecraftian characteristic: the human ability to see something so incomprehensible that it can defy reason and, quite often, an articulate description.

(33)- Another Lovecraftian staple of the narrator having to lie because the truth would not be accepted by authorities

(33A)- "Architech"- a Masonic reference to God. "...the spaces between them..." Another nod to the deleted alternate opening of "Army of Darkness".

(34)-A reference to the Masonic Catechisms, as both the Narrator and his friend Edward are Freemasons.

(35)- In several Lovecraft tales, it's said the Old Ones brought their images with them and they were not made of any materials found on the Earth.

(36)- The Phoenix being a mythical bird that cannot be destroyed, always rising from the ashes, reborn.

(37)- This opens the storyline to continue as Edward and the Narrator go on the offensive against the children of Dagon and Cthulhu Cultists- as well as trying to destroy the Necronomicon in Arkham. Also, a rough date can be determined as August 10th, 1943 as the date that the Narrator torches the library.


THATS ALL !! I HOPE YOU HAD AS MUCH FUN READING IT AS I HAD MAKING IT!

"The Island of Dagon" : Final Chapter: " A Clue & an Oath"

CHAPTER X: "A CLUE AND AN OATH"

 

After that, Edward and I survived on the rations that we had stowed and within a week, we had been picked up by an American ship. We told our rescuers only that we were stranded on Ujelang and the rest of our party had befallen to the Japanese survivors of the Mikage Maru sinking. They would not believe what had actually transpired. (33)

What I have written into this account is true and I have witnessed the crawling chaos that resides in the deep, dark oceanic depths rising up to greet the world with a cacophony of death and destruction. I cannot rest until the remaining pieces of the great puzzle are destroyed so that no man may follow to that horrid chasm again. Ancient man may have thought these creatures to have been gods, given them names and worshipped them, but I know that they are living creatures, powerful perhaps, but not gods. I also know that within the Architects design, there are things that live not in the spaces we know, but between them.(33A)

Edward, my closest and dearest friend, with whom brotherly secrecy and assistance has been assured by oath (34), have avowed to end the cult of Dagon by our own hands. We have the will and means to wage war upon those unnamed and accursed things that cower in the light, but prey in the dark on innocents. To this we have sworn our lives.

But until that time, I leave this manuscript rolled and sealed into the stone idol of that most evil Cthulhu that I took from Ujelang.

It will not burn and will be found- as it was brought with them from whence they came and is not of materials of this earth.(35)

I will place this foul thing on the front steps of the library, as I cannot enter into it now as the entire interior is fully engulfed in the purifying flames that I set within the rare books section. I've used enough accelerant to ensure that the entire construction will be nothing but charred cinders before any firemen could possibly contain it.

Like the great Phoenix of ancient lore, I have been reborn with a new purpose.(36) The blood of my friends will not have been spilt in vain as we will be the hunters now. I have no other focus or interest in my life but to blot out those things that bay and whisper at night and slip into the sea unnoticed by mankind into that dismal blackness of Dagons domain.

We will lie in the mossy & ancient cemeteries and abandoned cathedrals during those devils Sabbaths and send them back into that darkest, most secret Hell there is.

We must first make a stop in Arkham before our destiny at Innsmouth awaits.(37)

 
THE END

"The Island of Dagon" Chapter 9: "A Battle & a Glimpse into Hell"

CHAPTER IX: " A BATTLE AND A GLIMPSE INTO HELL"

By the afternoon, we had explored the lower level of the building, gathered numerous objects of interest and examined them.

The upper level was barely accessible, as decay had collapsed most of the stairways. There were numerous rooms and antechambers in the first floor that still contained the remnants of a chemical lab, offices and rooms of dubious use. It seemed as though this temple, as it were, was deserted in extreme haste.

There was a study room full of books and reference materials all related to the occult, both ancient and modern. Most of these books were known to me in my studies, but not all of them had I ever read fully. The more ancient books, mostly in Latin, Arabic and Hebrew, I might have stood a chance at translating, but most everything else was in modern German. In any case, there was scant time to investigate these tomes, even if I had the interest that I once had before leaving San Francisco.

Edward and I also found a room where there were chains bolted to the walls having shackles.(27A) The rooms floor was slanted into a cone shape towards a round orifice where the most foul stench emanated. Various tools, fashioned from what appeared to be gold, lay untouched on a small table in the corner.(28) Each of the bladed instruments were engraved with the symbol of Dagon and various other indicia that we had observed in the great hall. This room was probably where the most despicable atrocities had occurred. What experiments happened here? How many lives were snuffed out in sacrifice to pagan devils?

We were on a scavenger hunt for possible weapons within these halls of Hell and I grabbed up the blades without hesitation.

Edward suggested that he go to the laboratory and obtain whatever acids or useful chemicals that might still be viable for use. I agreed.

Another smaller chamber adjacent to the room of death was much more mysterious than the first. There was an alter, made of strange colored stone in the center of the room. The alter had shackles for feet, hands and head mounted in their respected locations on the outlining rim of the rectangular slab. The base of the slab was carven with numerous symbols, as in the great hall- with a great swastika separating the two rows of inscriptions. The top of the slab was discolored, obviously with the blood of it's uncountable victims.

If this was the sacrificial chamber, then what was the greater room used for?(28A)

After meeting back in what we now referred to as the 'great hall', I asked Edward to explain what our intentions were regarding what was to come to our Japanese survivor. Edward spoke to Yuki and they had a rather lengthy conversation, rather animated at times.

The Japanese sailor- although a political enemy- was, in this unusual circumstance, an ally. He relayed through Edward that his allegiance was to kill the dark thing. Yuki, just as conscious of the other worldly ramifications as we, stated that the creatures that took his friends lives and that the dark thing was the enemy of all mankind. The on-going war between East and West would be but a faded memory if these devils were loosed upon the entire world. Yuki said that he would fight honorably by our side.

Crawford had an idea of trapping the dark thing, in an attempt to destroy it. We spoke at length what we could use amoung our equipment to fashion such a device sturdy enough to hold the beast at bay. Taking stock, we had rope, climbing shackles and sufficient materials to build a type of snare. Crawford stated that we could bait the creature into the center of the snare with bait- 'sauce for the goose' as he put it.(29) Edward suggested using one of the stone idols and a page of the book as bait.

I further suggested that the beast is smarter than that and we would need to create both a diversion and an attack simultaneously. The beast had been here before and we were now going to fight it on it's own soil.

The following hours were spent readily making the gigantic snare and carefully placing it on the ground of the great hall.

Crawford had further fashioned a line to a counter-balance of heavy stone blocks. These blocks took all of our physical power to maneuver into the proper positions- ready to topple and capture the dark thing.

As the sunset, we prepared to battle the dark thing. The floor entrances were barricaded and we hoped to force him to fly in through the glass ceiling, where we would lie in wait with the trap hastily designed by Crawford- where we would attempt to destroy the thing with our weapons- ballistic, chemical, bladed and bludgeon.

We took stock of our weapons: I had one half magazine in my .45, Crawford and Carter had full magazine of same; while Ward was in possession of some acids obtained from the old lab- while Yuki had a bludgeon and a large hand knife. This was what our small band of humans had to fight and destroy a supernatural being...we swore to fight it to our deaths if necessary.

We watched through the hastily made barricades as the last of the sunlight glided in sharp, angular shafts throughout the great hall and became smaller until nothing but a strange, dark stillness remained.(30)

We listened and waited, for how long I could not tell. A sound was heard above our heads, in the upper level- the sound of walking on the concrete. Our attention fully focused on the upper level, hearts beating in our ears, thought exactly what Edward was about to whisper.

"Dear God...it's been in here with us the whole time..."

Suddenly, the dark thing appeared and screamed a million death screams, eyes searing red in an ageless fury, lept into the air from the second floor, wings spread.

The dark thing, guided by his rage, swooped down from the upper level towards us. Only Yuki was not quick enough to avoid it's attack. I saw the thing mid-air, without pause, to use the mouth-thing in it's abdomen to swallow his head whole and with a slight struggling, to hoist Yuki's entire body into the air. Crawford fired two shots, one piercing the dark thing through the wing and the other striking it's leg. The thing howled in great pain and Yuki's headless body fell to the floor in a great thump and
outpouring of blood. The dark thing flew up towards to the second floor and was quickly lost in the darkness.

We listened intently, but no movement or sound of it was heard for several minutes. We crawled and regrouped amongst several large blocks of the collapsed concrete.

Whispering, Crawford stated, "We can kill it- it can be hurt- it's flesh and blood."

"It's waiting... it's going to try and pick us off one at a time, now that it knows it won't get it's way", I said.

"We've got to get it down here, "Ward interjected, "and into that damn snare!"

"How can we lure it?", Edward countered.

There was no turning back now, there was no choice but to fight this Hell-beast until nothing existed.

"I'll do it." I said. "And don't argue with me, Edward. This ends now."

I stood up and walked to the center of the snare next to the bait pages of the book and the stone idol. I shewn my light up and around the upper level.

"Isn't this what you want?" I yelled. "Our bodies, our blood?! Well, here's one- come on and get it!"

There was no sound. It knew it must be a trap. I prayed to God and after a few moments, a hellish whisper was heard.

"It is not I who wants your blood.....it is he who is dead and sleeping..."

I picked up the pages of the book and placed my light under my left arm. I removed my lighter from my pocket and drew a flame. Only then, was a more definite movement was heard on the upper level.

"Ah, does this worry you? That I would destroy what you have sought?"

"There is another...." came the slithering response.

I knew that he wasn't lying about the other copy. But he was lying about his need for these. Something was flung from the upper level and struck the ground before my feet. It was Yuki's head, eyes glaring in the fog of death- his face a frozen state of terror.

I lit the ancient papers afire and flung them to the ground.

The thing flew into the air as I grabbed my light. As it swooped towards me, Crawford and Carter began firing- striking the thing in several places. I fired at it three times, striking it once in the face, above it's right eye. It fell from the air and began flopping on the ground. There was no time to activate the snare.

The others raced to my side and we approached the limping, crying thing as it tried to back away from us.

We came within two yards of it and it turned and let out such a cry from it's mouth-thing as any thing from a Hellish abyss could, hoping to frighten us- it's wing outspread, quivering in a false fury.

It whispered in the dark, "There are others...Ia!...the stars will again be r....ugggh!"(31)

It could not continue as we all fired our weapons until there was no more bullets to spend. As it lie in a slowly growing pool of slime and red-blood, twitching- we began to beat and stab the thing in such primal rage as even the warful Spartans of old would not bear to watch.(32) Ward fell backwards at this final act and fell upon the ground. We had completed our task only until none of us could
physically continue and there lay before us only a decimated pile of unidentifiable meat, sinew, blood and biles.

I poured the acids onto the remnants in an attempt to leave no trace of the foul thing. (32A)

I, at last, fell to the ground, exhausted and aching. Crawford and Carter were to my left, panting and wiping the primal sweat from their brow- attempting to rid the blood from their clothes and hands. I asked them if they were injured, to which they replied that they were not. Ward, to my right, was sitting upright and wide-eyed, trying to breathe slowly. I attempted to speak to him,
but he was unreachable in his state.

We all sat amidst the rubble, occasionally throwing a glance at each other as if to make sure we were still there. I again tried to speak to Ward and there was no response. I quickly moved to him and checked for a pulse and there was none to be found. His eyes were glazed and it was certain that death had come for him during our final assault on the dark thing. Thomas Ward, our friend,
student, linguist and ultimately- a hero of the human race- was dead. (32B)

The others joined me as I stood over his body. I prayed to God to allow him the rest he so deserved and the sacrifice he had made for both us and all humankind. Unlike the Professor, we had no time to afford dear Ward a proper burial, but, then again, on what part of Hell does one expect to bury a good man?

"We need to get out of here.", said Crawford. "That thing in the crate may still be about."

We gathered what was only necessary, with the exception that I grabbed the unholy idol of Cthulhu and stuffed it in my duffel bag.

We forced away some of the concrete slabs at the front entrance to get out and began into the tropical forest.

As we exited onto the beach front, we saw the skiff intact. We gathered the remaining equipment, food and water and placed them into the skiff. All three of us began to push it towards the awaiting sea when Crawford said that he saw something. Carter and I stopped pushing and turned to the direction in which Crawford was looking.

Further down the beach, barely visible in the moonlight, was something large. It appeared to be undulating, rolling and then slapping the sandy beach as if it's form had reached a certain limit of contortion, then repeating this process of movement.

"Christ Almighty! That's what made the marks on the beach from the crate! Go!", cried Carter.

We all began to push the skiff even harder. Fear, as I have learned, is a motivation seldom used in normal life. As we made it to the surf, I turned and looked back to the thing behind us.

It may have been the moonlight or my nerves, but I swear that it appeared almost translucent and jelly-like. As it moved, it looked like there were small, appendages forming and re-absorbing back into the mass with each locomotive undulation. It also became apparent that as it came closer it was of immense size-how could something that massive move? My mind attempted to comprehend what this thing was and how could it have come into being. It simply should not be, but yet, was.(32C)

We launched into the sea and began paddling out- all eyes glued onto the misshapen monstrosity pursuing us for it's own aims. As we made our way into the crescent shaped lagoon of the island, we saw the thing sliding quietly into the ocean into our direction.

"Crawford", I screamed, "get the flare gun!"

Crawford began to rummage through the bag and retrieved the flare gun and two flares. We looked back and could see no wakes or other indications that the thing was still in pursuit. We all stopped paddling and directed our gaze aft ward. There was a stillness of the waters as the moonlight reflected around us.

Without warning, the thing silently rose from the water at the rear of the skiff- rearing it's form high into the air with only the sound of the sea water sliding and splashing back into it's home. The thing began to descend onto Crawford, who managed to fire the flare gun as it absorbed his body into the gel-like form. The entire creature reeled back from the shock and we could clearly see Crawford
struggling inside of it's translucence as a second flare lit up the entire bulk of the thing as it fell back into the sea.

Edward and I leaned over the side and watched, helplessly, as the shapeless blob descended in the oceans depths with Crawford still absorbed within it's mass, struggling to escape. The look on his face is something that I shall never forget...nor forgive.

I can only imagine what hell we was taken to in that dark oceanic pit.

I pray that he was dead before ever reaching it.


FINAL CHAPTER X: "A CLUE AND AN OATH"

"The Island of Dagon" Chapter 8: "Of Gods and Men"

CHAPTER VIII: "OF GODS AND MEN"

I am the murderer of Professor Raymond Knowles. I am also responsible for the disposition of his body in a shallow grave on Ujelang Island. But, this tale is far from completed and there is much to say in a very short amount of time.

Ward and Crawford tended to the injured Japanese sailor. As he became clearer of mind and realized we meant him no harm, he and Edward had rudimentary conversations.

As the sun rose over the island, Edward had amassed a considerable tale told by the sailor, which was relayed to the rest of as this:

His name was Yuki Takamura, a submariner of the "Mikage Maru". He said that on July 19th, a heated undersea battle ensued with an American sub which had sank it near Ujelang Island. Although the sub was left for dead, several men survived in pockets of the sub which contained a fair amount of air. He further stated that the Mikage Maru came to rest upon a large, rocky obelisk which had penetrated the hull almost in two. This left several sections of the obelisk visible to view- as they contained carven images of strange and unknown anthropoid creatures. He stated that within minutes,
strange creatures, neither man nor fish, began slithering into the flooded hull leaving a thick and odiferous oil-like substance in their wake. The "O-Wata-Tsu-Mi" as he called them began taking the few survivors deep into the abyss. Yuki stated that he managed to escape and make it to Ujelang Island.

Since that day, he had survived on the natural fruits and had discovered the temple. Once inside, he pieced together a version of what we had already begun to suspect. Of particular interest, was the fact that he had seen the dark man, coming to the island during the nights- rummaging through the decrepit debris. Yuki saw the dark man fly in fury around the building, baying in an inhuman cry that frightened him so that sleep was impossible during the dark hours. He said he saw slimy, misshapen, gelatinous creatures coming from the sea and engaging in some rhythmic communion on the shores.(25)

After Edward had completed his conversation with the sailor, he and I decided to go and retrieve the provisions left near the beach and destroy what was ever in that crate. Crawford stated that he was going to work on the solving the carvings and explore the building looking for clues.

Edward and I made our way through the foliage near the beach and discovered most of our equipment and belongings. The crate, to our utter horror, had been smashed open. The wooden shards were pointing outward and their appearance was that what was ever inside of it had broken out.

The crate, wooden in construction, was internally sealed by a thick rubber lining. There was the smell of sea water and of a strange and nauseating hint of decaying matter emanating from it. We noticed a thick trail of black, oily residue leading from the interior of the crate and out onto the beach. This trail, as we observed it, was periodically dotted with some type of mark or depression indicative of some sort of non-bipedal locomotion.(26) Whatever was in that crate was now gone into the sea.

Upon returning to the building, Crawford stated that he had a significant find regarding the timeline carvings on the walls. He explained his notions point by point through each carving plate one by one. The carvings, were as we suspected, a representation of the history of the Old Ones. Interesting enough, the carvings seemed to pass our era in time and proceeding into the future. We could not even guess if this future was eons from now or if it was being witnessed now.

The last few panels depicted a great city in the sea, rising above the waters having indescribable creatures coming from their catacombs and spreading death and chaos in thier wake. The final panel was of a human-like figure standing on one side of what appeared to be a doorway and a fish-man thing on the other. We all concurred that this final carving must be the final clue as to how to release the ancient things.

Using a pry tool from our equipment, Edward and I began prying the stone tablet from the wall. As it fell, a small chamber could be made out behind it. Reaching inside, I found the remaining fragments of the Book of the Dead. We placed the pages flat onto one of our boxes to examine them properly.

The pages were fully illustrated and was written in many languages from many different ages. There were images of human sacrifices and devil-things dancing in joy of the spilling of the blood. There were signs of stars and planets, which were seemingly scientifically accurate- a contradiction in such that they existed in a book of such supernatural anti-science.

The second page contained a disturbingly accurate depiction of the dark thing Phillips. Encircling his right hand was the image of a man, whilst around his left hand were four images of men. The four men were hanging upside down with their throats cut with their blood filling some type of vessel below which was surrounded by a blob-ish image.

The Japanese sailor, upon seeing the strange drawing said, "O-Wata-Tsu-Mi!"

Crawford and Ward had already begun to translate, as best they could, what the sailor had pointed to. They said that some was in Greek, some in Latin and some in Aramaic.

"In what the eons of births brought forth, the first children of Dagon will be led by the Last."

They said that was the best translation of the first line they could do, it's hidden meaning was something altogether different.

They then proceeded to read what was inscribed beneath the drawing of the dark thing.

"The Last will bring the forth the Messenger of Dagon to Great Cthulhus Throne in R'hley. There, bathed in the blood of reason, at last- when the stars are right, the Great Priest Cthulhu will hear that the world is once again his."

"The Latin, I can't quite understand...'penitus nex'...'inner death', Crawford stated.

Ward responded, "Here, this next line...'Pessum ire... universitas'. What's that middle word, Crawford?"

"I can't make it out, it's smudged or something...", was his response, "...'destroyer of worlds', maybe?"

I said that the images in the book around the dark man was obvious that it required a human lackey to assist him in his task, while there also needed four blood sacrifices to the messenger which, I supposed, was in the crate. Ward, Carter, Crawford and myself knew that it was to be us, our blood to bring forth the message sent by Dagon to Cthulhu.

"There is but one true God in this Universe, my friends," I said to them, "These things are not gods, nor devils- they are living creatures from beyond."(27)

"Burn the pages!", Ward cried.

"No! Finish reading them and see if there is a way to destroy the dark man. It's got to be him or the thing in the crate that must be destroyed to stop the chain of events from occurring, right?", Crawfords voice was shaking.

"The dark thing will be back tonight for these pages. I want to kill it and then destroy the pages."

We all stood around the pages, hoping there would be an answer within them. By the end of that day, none of us would have known what doorway to Hell had been cracked opened and we would glimpse the truth of a cosmic madness.

NEXT CHAPTER IX: "A BATTLE AND A GLIMPSE INTO HELL"

"The Island of Dagon" Chapter 7: "A Revelation & a Murder"

CHAPTER VII: "A REVELATION AND A MURDER"

After recovering from the affray, we held the professor. He was looking up to the broken ceiling, muttering incomprehensively.

We shook him and asked him what Phillips was. He seemed unable to focus on anything other than the dark thing that had apparently vanished, despite my bullets apparently striking their mark repeatedly.

Crawford, more out of fear of what had just happened than by inhumanity, slapped the professor across his face- breaking his almost trace-like state.

"No...", the professor muttered, "...no...I don't want to go back to the dark place..."

Crawford, more animated now by inhumanity, struck the professor in the face with great force.

"Tell us what the hell is going on, Professor!"

The professor, dazed more by the blows than his strange yearning for the dark man, began to answer. He stated that some sort of cosmic upheaval in 1925 had been discovered by an innocent crew of sailors in the Pacific Ocean.(20) The picture he had shown us before we set out was taken then and was not the product of any new discovery. He said it was necessary to gain our co-operation in the task at hand. He said that our talents in the ancient histories and languages would be essential for the
completion of the task his master had in store. "Phillips" was, indeed not a man at all, but a half-breed descendant of the sea-god, Dagon.(21) He stated that "Phillips" was a harbinger and a discoverer of a certain object of importance to both his gods and the Thule Society.

The professor stated that he saw an opportunity to seize upon an object of such antiquity and celestial importance that he had planned to accept the offer of recovery and then betray both Phillips and the Thule Society. That is, until he was shown the true nature of the dark man and the cult of Cthulhu. As of the contents of the crate, he would not dare describe- only to say that at this point it was necessary to destroy it before it could be borne out to sea in the atolls.

He swore that he knew nothing of the dark mans plans to kill us and use our bodies for some unnatural cause until the last day on the Etolin. He said that such mysterious powers cannot be denied by one man and the dark man commanded him under the threat of such torments and brimstone that even death would be welcomed. The dark man was the bringer of the messenger of the Old Ones- those beings that were spawn from the stars to the Earth before man had ever existed.(22)

An ancient and eternal order of such secrecy that it was almost discarded away as too abstract of conception to ever consider being real. But it existed and had for countless eons, passing its corrupted, foul seed down the chain of humankind through abominations like the dark man to almost unremembered dreams by the sensitive few around the world.(23)

The Old Ones were powerful and ancient, immense and evil creatures- rejoicing in chaos and death. They did not think themselves as gods, as they worshipped pain and suffering, turmoil and torture inflicted upon living things.

Somehow, the book of the dead held certain secrets on communing and awakening the Old Ones- as well as keep them entombed in their death-like state in the sunken city that was discovered in 1925. The dark man had tried to obtain the complete copy in Massachusetts, but failed as there were certain persons at Miskatonic that knew the secrets of the book and had it secured in such a way as even the Old Ones themselves could not touch it.(23A)

He explained that the Thule Society had obtained a partial translated copy in fragmentary form in the late 1880's and built this isolated temple to study it and attempt to harness the power to assist Germany in total control of the world during The Great War.(24) They failed and the Society joined into the Cthulhu Cult- directly worshipping the Old Ones as gods. The bargain he made with the dark man was to provide our partial copy of the book and obtain the fragments on Ujelang Island- using us as interpreters and handlers of the pieces- as the dark man himself could not breach the dream power of his masters during their eternal death sleep- that was the messengers task.

The professor stated that he knew little more than that, other than the dark man could do nothing to bring forth the Old Ones without the thing in the crate from Innsmouth and the secrets within this forgotten building.

Carter, Crawford, Ward and I were trying to understand and piece together what the professor had explained.

There was no denying that what was occurring was universal in scope and difficult to entirely understand. We knew that if Knowles was telling the truth- the thing in the crate must be destroyed to prevent the dark man from completing his task of releasing the Old Ones.

Knowles, pale, weakened and frightened beyond description regarding his actions, said: "I'm sorry..."

And with that final statement, that final pitiful, meaningless excuse...I shot him in his head- placing him into the oblivion that he did so deserve as a betrayer of all mankind.

 
NEXT CHAPTER 8: "OF GODS AND MEN"

"The Island of Dagon" Chapter 6: "A Scream & Gun Shots at Midnight"

CHAPTER VI: "A SCREAM AND GUN SHOTS AT MIDNIGHT"

 

The short trip from the Etolin to the beach was strenuous for the four of us. The dark man sat at the bow, the professor behind and we took position at the aft. I tried to examine the sliding slot of the crate and the strange stains around it, but there was not enough light to see what substance it was.

Upon landing, the professor suggested that we unload the equipment and hide it. He stated that there was an old building left on the island from the 1880's and we should seek refuse there until communication could be made with the chartered ship.

The wind was picking up and a slight drizzle was upon us. This was common for this region, I told myself. Somehow, I felt as though there was more than an approaching storm in store for our expedition.

I took the .45 and placed in within my jacket, as did Crawford and Carter. We watched the dark man intently as we made our way towards the topical vegetation. After securing the equipment, I noticed the professor did not remove the radio provided by the Etolin. The three of us quietly passed the word amongst us to be ready for anything. What happened next what totally un-expected as the dark man turned to us as spoke two simple words that sent an searing fear within us all. Not because of the words, but because of the sound of his voice- there was almost an unperceivable multiplicity to it.(16A)

"Follow me."

The words, although self explicit, gave us the knowledge that the dark man was the leader here, not the professor.

The dark man turned, with the professor in tow, into the vegetation- we followed but always with a short distance between us and them. After a short trek and the weather becoming more violent, we approached a large building. Decrepit, moldy and encrusted with vines and vegetation- it looked the stuff of nightmares...and I was not far from wrong.

There was a large weather-worn sculpture in the front of the building. It was a anthropoid-like shape, but having the head of a cephalopod, sitting in a crouched position on some type of oddly-angled throne. There was emblazed upon the base a swastika and badly worn away words. Clearly, one such phrase was clearly and horrifically clear: "Esoteric Order of Dagon".(17)

The other "Aus Äonen Vergangenheit die alten kam"- Ward said meant 'From eons past the elder ones came'.

Ward stated that Dagon was a demon worshipped by the Assyrians during Biblical times. He said the Ark of the Covenant was placed in the Temple of Dagon and each night, the Dagon idol was smashed. He stated that the Order of Dagon was no longer in practice for centuries. I told him to reserve that judgment.

I, too, was familiar with Dagon and it's implications that the cult still existed in secret.

Our hand torches illuminated the main entranceway as the dark man and the professor entered first. As we entered, we saw the interior was vast and as the exterior, overgrown with local vegetation. Overhead, a large glasspayned ceiling leaked of the rains outside.

There were bas-relief symbols in the architecture of strange, fish-like men. Some of the signage appeared to be from very different ancient civilizations mixed with more modern German design. The border seemed to be a time line of some type. Ward pointed out that the far left corner appeared to be a symbol of a star falling to Earth, followed by carvings of ancient man. He also recognized Assyrian and Babylonian demonologies carved along side a sign he believed to be Arabic.

As the carvings encircled the large room, it seemed to be chronicling humankinds history- ending in the far right column with a square panel depicting what seemed to be a door with a man on one side and a fish-thing on the other.(18)

I knew the importance and secrecy that might be symbolically contained within the carvings, as for centuries Freemasonry has done the same to keep our secret history alive to our kind without overt revelations to outsiders. Edward, also a Mason, looked at me with a strange gaze in his eyes. I believed he thought the same.

As the others and I began to recognize more and more of these symbols and began talking to ourselves. We began to realize what link the Thule Society and the Necronomicon may have to do with what was happening. Crawford said the Necronomicon was a book of history, incantations and demonology of what was called the Old Ones. Crawford new little more than that.

There was some Latin that was carved around one such carving.

Ward, pointed to that particular carving, saying aloud, 'Dagon rises up to meet his children', it says!"

Before Ward could finish his sentence, the dark man stopped and abruptly turned towards us.

" Stay here until the professor and I return."

We all looked as each other for a moment, realizing this was a turning point in the trek into the madness to come.

"No." I said.

The professor muttered, "What?"

"No. I'll not take another damned step until you or...or...'Phillips' tells us what is going on! Not one damned step!"

The others backed to my side, assuring the dark man and the professor that we were together in our assertiveness. The dark man pushed past the professor and proceeded towards our group with purpose. I withdrew my weapon and aimed it at him.

"Stop! I've seen enough that I'll blow your damned brains out! Now you'll tell us! What's in that damned crate?!"

The dark man, almost amused, slowly took off his eyeglasses. Wards hands, although shaking, managed to shine the light into the face of the dark man. His eyes were bulbous, almost fish-like, his lips thin and his teeth were like yellowed parchment.(19)

God, I saw gill-like slits quivering around his neck!

"You don't want to know."

At that instant, a scream emanated from the room and a man-shape leapt from the shadows towards the dark man. With ease, the dark man picked up his unseen assailant and threw him to the ground and stepped back- his eyes ablaze and making a hissing sound.

Our lights saw that it was a man- a Japanese sailor whom had attached the dark man. As he fell unconscious, he muttered,

"Amatsu Mikaboshi......"

Edward said that the fainting sailor said the name of a Japanese devil-god. We focused our attention back to the danger at hand.

The dark man, backing into the darkness behind of the professor, eyes glowing red, glared at me which seem to penetrate my mind. As he moved back, a leathery unfolding sound was heard and our flashlights became focused on the dark man, what we though was his overcoat was spreading outward becoming large bat-like membranous wings.

We saw his body was pale, having bluish veins and odd-shaped feelers protruding from his chest. A ghastly, mouth-like orifice was opening in his abdomen, revealing rows of thin, razor-like teeth. His legs were like a horses but instead terminated into quasi-fin like appendages. An unnatural amalgamation of anatomy- unknown & unnamable. God help us! He wasn't human!!

The professor leapt forward, screaming, "Wait! I've done all you've asked! I kept it alive so it could join with the others!"

The dark man-thing, with one large flap of his wings, began to rise from the ground. I emptied half of the magazine of the .45 into the thing and in the chaos that immediately followed-the dropping of lights and a crash of glass overhead, the dark thing was gone.


NEXT CHAPTER : "A REVELATION AND A MURDER"

"The Island of Dagon" Chapter 5: "A Foreshadowing & an Arrival"

CHAPTER V: "A FORESHADOWING AND AN ARRIVAL"

After Edward and I had escaped the cargo hold, we met with Ward and Crawford and told them of our experience. Ward stated that he had heard those words before, but could not remember where. We decided to not continue to follow the professor any longer as the strange and horrific implications were simply to abhorrent to consider. We all knew that we were only a few days away from Ujelang and there was very little we could do.

After discussing all of our information and our suppositions regarding both the professor and the mysterious Phillips, we all agreed that something must be done to uncover whatever truth lies hidden in these events. We all felt the underlying feeling that something evil had hold of the professor and we agreed that the evil was Phillips. Whatever Phillips was, man or other, we must find out. Our plan would never come to fruition, as the Professor was ahead of us and held another fate in store.

Ward and Crawford suggested that we steal some small side arms from the servicemen right before we left the Etolin. All agreed that this was necessary, considering what Edward and I had witnessed. We discussed the possibility that Phillips was in the crate in some sort of vampyrish suspended animation and the Professor was providing him sustenance. God! How could this be in our modern age of science and reason?

Before we retired that night, the servicemen were unusually active in conversation. Our group listened intently to news that the Allied troops were beginning to amass a large force near Hawaii for some sort of offensive in or near the Marshall Islands.

I was quite keen to listen discreetly amoung the servicemen to gain information regarding the latest news from the areas where we were going. The most interesting news, which would become more horrifically pertinent later into our doomed mission, was that on July 19th an American submarine- The USS Porpoise- had battled and sank a Japanese sub, the "Mikage Maru", somewhere near the vicinity of Ujelang Island.(15) 

The next few days were met with the usual interaction between ourselves and the servicemen, without sign of the Professor.

We stayed as a group whenever possible and kept detailed notes and journals regarding our experience thus far. The closer we came to Ujelang, the greater the intensity of our feeling that something wicked was coming.

The evening of the 24th, we were told to proceed to the top deck to meet with the professor and prepare to be transferred to Ujelang Island. Upon arrival we saw the professor, pale and appearing weakened. He stated that the chartered ship had not yet arrived and the Etolin's captain had stated that they could not wait for it's arrival. He continued by stating that we were going to be unloaded ashore on the island, along with our equipment and some supplies for short-term survival in the
event that the chartered ship did not arrive. The Etolin was to loan us a skiff to reach shore and upon returning by Ujelang, would check our status by radio.

The Etolin's captain assured us that Ujelang Island was not occupied by any forces of the war and there was only one building on the island dating back to the 1880's- an old German factory, long abandoned.(16)

The Professor instructed us to go below immediately and gather our gear.

The four of us went below and began gathering our things. Three of us were able to steal side arms from our bunkmates without being discovered, but Ward was unable to. We quickly discussed these change in plans and stated that there was something amiss, we feared the professor was on to our suspicions. Hiding the firearms amoung our personal possessions, we went back to the top
deck.

To our surprise, the loading crane had already begun unloading the strange crate to the small craft from the Etolin. To further our confusion, standing in the craft alight and visible in the reflections of the sea, was the dark man.

At this point in time, I didn't care about the Japanese or the war going on near us....I feared the contents of that crate.

If Phillips was not being transported in that damned crate....then what was?

NEXT CHAPTER VI: "A SCREAM & GUNSHOTS AT MIDNIGHT"