Excerpt from 'The Bleak House' short story

Posted by Nick Skog on Tuesday, November 2, 2010 Under: Miscellaneous
On the forthcoming Hypnotic Dirge Records compilation release, I have contributed a short story to the text portion of the compilation release which I've entitled "The Bleak House"

I've decided to release a short excerpt from the story ahead of time:


The Bleak House
Hypnotic Dirge Records Compilation #2: Melancholic Epifany
(The Trance Formation Is Shattered)
Text Portion
Written by: Vultyrous (Funeral Fornication)
Oct. 28th 2010

Anyone else might have fled in terror; however, I was in such a state that I was unable to trust my eyes, as I knew all too well the tricks they could play upon an intoxicated mind. I chose to ignore the rug, and instead turned my gaze back to the closed door on the far wall. I stared intently at the crack between the door and the floor. All I saw was the blackest darkness, though I swore I could hear whispering emanating from behind the door. At first, I thought it was merely the fire crackling over the constant thrumming of the rain and the wind’s whistling, playing more tricks on my excited imagination, but the longer I sat in the rocking chair, the more I became convinced it was two voices whispering back and forth, and definitely coming from behind the door.

I stood up and tiptoed across creaking floorboards towards the door. Kneeling down, I placed my ear next to it in silent eagerness. As I did, the whispering ceased immediately. I glanced back to the opposing wall and realized I was now in a room with only the one door! The door through which I had entered the house was gone, as if it had never been there. The gnawing fear I had felt before returned, this time to raise the hairs on the back of my neck. I ran to where the front door had been, and felt the wall in its place. My mind swam, the metallic taste of fear sour in my mouth, until I convinced myself aloud that it was the drugs playing with my perception. To this day, I’m not sure if I truly believed my own words, but I managed to calm myself and allowed my breathing to return to normal. I approached the closed door once again, this time reaching out to grasp the doorknob. It was now the only exit from the room, so it would be only a matter of time before I’d be forced to go through it in any event. Perhaps it was an inner need to be in control of my own fate, or possibly a readiness to welcome my own death, that caused me to open the door at that moment. It mattered not. I eased it open with a loud creak and found myself at the foot of a long and precarious stairwell leading upwards into darkness.
For a long moment, I simply stood there and stared upward, as strange and terrible shadows, whose very presence was inexplicable in the already black stairwell, crept menacingly downward toward me. To my dazed and drug-induced vision, the shadows seemed to coalesce into nightmare shapes with long arms and ragged claws, eager to grasp my person. They swarmed about me, drenching me in darkness, and then flowed around and past me into the room, casting out the waning light from the windows and snuffing out the fire. I waited another short moment for my eyes to adjust to the darkness, which they eventually did. It was then that I chose to brave the stairs.

Step after step led me upward in a seemingly endless ascent. I climbed forever, turning back only once to see how far I had come. The door was naught but a faint and tiny dot at the base of a myriad of never-ending stairs. I could not correctly sense the passage of time, for it seemed to me hours since I had begun the journey up the mountain of steps. More time passed, slower than ever it had, or so it seemed. Several times within the passing hours, I had to pause to catch my breath. Eventually, at long last, I could see the top step in the far distance. My legs ached madly, and my heart was pounding -- not from fear, but exhaustion. Time seemed to stand still, and after an indeterminate period (it might have been moments or hours), I finally reached the summit of the stairwell, only to collapse, my legs refusing to work for a second longer. My feet felt blistered inside my shoes, and the sweat soaked all my clothes. Glancing down the stairs brought me to tears, for I saw then, and only then, that I had climbed thirteen steps to the second floor of the house. The door below was shut once again.

If you are interested in reading the rest of the story, you can download the compilation at www.hypnoticdirgerecords.com on November 7th, 2010.


In : Miscellaneous 

Tags: funeral fornication solitude suicide vultrous ambient depressive black death doom epic symphonic