Just read “Twist and Shout”
Just read “Twist and Shout”
Today has been a monumental day in the United States supreme court discussing the topic of same-sex marriage, and of course everyone has been buzzing. My news feed is filled with pictures of the red equal sign and its magnificent. While I am a very big advocate of same sex marriage and I want to…
If you said goodbye to me tonight
There would still be music left to write
What else could I do
I’m so inspired by you
That hasn’t happened for the longest time
People change, those you know and those you love evolve. Time and experiences change us all. We become different people from those we used to be. Along the way some are lost. They become people you no longer know. In their changing they take something from you. No longer are they the person you thought they were and in their absence you will be left with a hole. While they may still be around the person that they used to be will never live again. But wait, the worst is not yet upon you. For the hole you have may be covered and concealed but there will come a day when they say something or you cross a memory in your mind that gives you that small flicker of who they were. In that instant you remember what they were to you and the hole is ripped open again, the scar is opened fresh and you have only to be slapped with salt as the flicker fades. Yes, people change and they leave, it is difficult to manage. But the true tax they take of you is the traps they leave in their new selves and in your mind. One trip, one stumble of word or mind and the blood will again flow. People are dangerous in their threat of absence but it is the flickers of what could have been that will be your undoing.
David Tennant and John Barrowman. “David, I’ve got cake!” “Woohoo!” I’m laughing way harder than I should be right now.
I like to imagine this is Daniel and his Dad Tony…
The rain continued to poor down, beating against the tin roof. The rhythm was not overwhelming but blocked out all ambient noise. Wet clothes lay strewn about the cottage floor, forming small puddles of murky rainwater on the light wood flooring. The remnants of a fire burned low in the hearth, its embers giving off an orange glow that filled the room. In front of it, sat two mugs, half filled with what was now cold hot chocolate. A dark line had run down one of the mugs and settled into a perfect circle on the light table. Side-by-side, the two men lay on a sofa covered by a wool blanket. The dark haired man lay in between the couch back and the other. His defined arm, which lay on top of the blanket, enveloped the second man. Both breathed the steady breaths of a deep sleep. Content radiated from their sleeping bodies, as their chests seemed to rise and fall together. It is in these unconscious moments that the world seems to take a breath, time seems to pause, and all of existence is at peace.
(School project I wrote for my sister. Weird right.)
WARNING: The procedures outlined below are to be followed by trained professionals only, unauthorized time-travelers DO NOT attempt.
Deinonychus, meaning “terrible claw”, is not the species of dinosaur that one would normally strive to cross paths with, which makes this illusive hunter such an extraordinary species to study. The capture of a single member is also a daunting task. Deinonychus is a keen tracker, a swift runner, and a fierce pack-hunter. It is crucial that anyone attempting to study and/or capture these creatures take all due precautions. When tracking, air-vehicles are preferred if not mandatory. Stay down wind at all times and use a long range tranquilizer rifle.
As stated before, in the wild Deinonychus travels in packs, which is one of the main complications. As with many pack animals in environments where food is scarce, a fallen comrade is simply easy prey. Thus it is vital the specimen be quarantined, via energy shield or simple metal bars, before being drugged. The proper method of immobilization is with a combination of butorphanol, azaperone, and medetomidine, also known as BAM. BAM is to be premixed using 0.5 ml butorphanol (30 mg/ml), 0.25 ml azaperone (50 mg/ml), and 0.25 ml medetomidine. Follow this strict dosage at 0.8 ml BAM/~23 kg estimated body weight. The drug will take a mean induction time of about 10 minutes. Once the animal is completely under, there is a 25-minute period until the effects start to wear off. During this period you must secure the animal in the transport container. (A note about the container: it should be air tight with full interior/exterior sterilization. This means that the animal will not bring any cotangents to the present, but also so that it does not contract anything from the future. The container also needs a life-signs monitor as well as a constant flow of nutrients and tranquilizer, either by IV or inhalant). Once secure, take all due time-travel precautions and avoid wormhole fluctuations.
Back at the research lab, two environments need to be set up; a holding cage where the Deinonychus has ample room to run and jump as well as a research containment field. The holding cage should consist of both flora and fauna of the middle cretaceous with minimal oddities. There should also be a heavily electrified fence or force field for containment issues. One or more trained, armed animal handlers should be present at all times. The research container should be just large enough for the animal to wiggle, but not turn around. All probes or tests should be conducted through automated machines or chainmail gloves.
Under Declaration 367 of the Timeline Institute’s laws all tests must be non-deadly or life altering. Death or dismemberment during any steps in this process will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. All specimens should be returned to their time period with a maximum 3 min interval.
The boat hummed beneath him and waves splashed the bow. Ace looked up as the boat slowed pulling into the small dock noticing the people milling around. He rose, gathering his gear, and walked down the dock.
“What do you mean we can’t do that? I don’t pay you to sit around all day!” a tall man in expensive suit was yelling into a cell phone. He was an older looking gentleman with a native complexion and graying hair. A small man stood at his side seeming almost to quake. On the other side of the dock was a rather large man wearing a Hawaiian shirt and sporting a camera. Standing with him was a boy that must be his son by the way he stood looking uncomfortable and embarrassed. The large man was trying to chat up an annoyed looking woman who was fidgeting with the pen in her hands and glanced at her watch far too often. She too looked like a native with her dark hair and tan skin.
“Daddy!” a voice rang out, shaking him from his observations. A young blonde haired girl ran toward him. She was wearing a bikini top and a cover-up around her waist.
“Kalie, what are you doing here? And what are you wearing?” He stared at her with a father’s scorn.
“I’m 18 now Daddy, I can take care of myself, and I came to see you. I heard from Mom that you were coming here and I wanted to see you. Is that such a bad thing?”
“You should be in school. Don’t you have class today?”
“Yes, but is nothing I can’t make up and how often do I get to come to Santorini?”
“Kalie, just because you go to school in Athens doesn’t mean you get to run off whenever you feel like it.”
“I’m sorry I wanted to get out and see you.” With that she stormed off down the dock.
“Damn,” Ace muttered under his breath. He knew she wanted to see him, but he also knew she just wanted an excuse to ditch school. And dressed like that she certainly wasn’t here for the scenery. With an exasperated sigh, he shifted his gear and started the trek up the mountain.
“Xavier, my boy. Are you ready to summit this slope or what? Arian here was just telling me how wonderful of an island this is,” Xavier’s father, Gulliver, raved. Xavier rubbed his forehead frowning; his father had been bugging the poor relator all afternoon. To Xavier, his father the epitome of a tourist and it was hard to take in.
“Um, yeah. Maybe I’ll just stay down here and walk around the harbor. You go on ahead. Was Mom going to join us?” he responded meekly.
“She stayed behind to catch up on some sleep. I think she was going to lie out on the beach. If you really don’t want to go, then I guess I’ll suffer through a climb to the top on my own,” Gulliver said over dramatically. “Come my dear, tell me more about the island. I hope there is somewhere to get food at the top.” He took Arian by the arm and half dragged her up the slope. Xavier walked off down the beach hands tucked into his pockets and dark hair hanging in his face.
“Hey there,” a voice from behind started him. He turned to find a girl about his age standing there her hands on her hips. “Rough day with the folks? I can relate.” She was beautiful and of course Xavier stumbled to find words.
“Uh, hi,” he managed. She laughed and fell into step next to him.
“I’m Kalie by the way, what’s your name?” She said cheerfully a smile covering her face.
“Camber…. Xavier Camber,” he said cursing himself silently.
“Nice meet you CamberXavierCamber. First time to the island? I’ll show you around.”
Ace, cumbered by his gear, was almost passed by the large man and his reluctant companion but managed to reach the summit first. He set up a seismometer near the small shack that stood on the northern edge of the small crater lake and began his walk around the crater. The lake was not wide but it shone in the sunlight. A small island stuck out of the water breaking its mirror-like surface. As Ace came to the edge where the island was closest, he noticed a disturbing sight. The grasses around the lake had died in patches and small bubbles were coming from the water. Ace took some samples of the water and soil before returning to his gear. It was high noon before the data began to fall together. Immediately Ace dropped what he was doing and headed for the harbor.
He was cute, she had to give him that, but he was so awkward. Anyway, she loved a challenge, “So, have you enjoyed your time here?”
“Yeah,” Xavier responded kicking a stone at his feet.
“Man of few words, I can respect that. What do you do for fun Xavier?”
“Yeah, you know that thing people do to have a good time?” Kalie laughed
“I don’t know, I keep to myself mostly. Not that it isn’t nice to have company…” Kalie could swear he grinned under his dark hair. Progress, she smiled. They had walked around the coastline of the small island and were now somewhere near the southeastern harbor. Kalie had shed her sandals, which she now held in her hand and Xavier had rolled his jeans up around his knees.
“How do you know so much about the island? Do you live here?” he asked her softly.
“Haha, no. I wish. I study abroad over in Athens,” she laughed.
“Wow, that’s awesome. I wish my parents would let me do stuff like that.”
“Europe is wonderful and all, but I miss the states sometimes. There are some good things over there,” Kalie grinned, nudging Xavier with her shoulder. He grinned at that and brushed the hair from his face. He opened his mouth to say something by the ground shook beneath them, and she lost her balance and fell into him.
Of course this was happening now, right on the eve of reelection; clearly fate was trying to tell him something. But the last time he had listened to fate was ages ago and he hadn’t planned to start that again. The USGS had been sending scientist after scientist and now the volcano had a quake. It was hard to reassure people that everything was all right when everything was going right, it was almost impossible now. Volcanoes rumble everyday. Nea Kameni itself had grown a dome and a crater lake within the past 20 years and nothing has happened. Events like this will blow over and the world will spin on. Till then it was up to him to–.
“–Sir,” Marcus, his personal assistant said, disrupting his thoughts. He was a small man, not much gusto to him, but there was something behind those eyes that made August keep him close. The man was always thinking and coming up with plans. Too bad he never had the guts to do anything with them.
“What?” August said finally, turning to face him. Marcus on nodded his head in the direction of the mountain trail, a man was running toward them. This man was of average build and carried himself with the confidence of someone who knew what he wanted. August respected that; it was a shame that he despised this man simply because of his presence.
“Mr. Julian, I have to talk to you,” the man blunder on, out of breath, “My name is Dr. Ace Bl–”
“–I know who you are and I don’t have the time to listen to the USGS’s antics today. Do you people even know the time scale I am–”
“–I don’t think you are understanding me. Santorini is a ticking time bomb, the SO2 emissions are staggering and seismic readings are off the charts.” Now August was getting seriously aggravated, not only did this man come to his country and input his two cents where it was not wanted but now he had the nerve to interrupt him.
“Now you listen here,” roared August, “that mountain has stood silent for years and you people have come in, poking at it and scaring people, and nothing has happened. Now you expect me to evacuate the islands on another one of your whims, I don’t think so.” With that the scientist straightened his shoulders and locked eyes with the representative before turning off and running back up the mountain. August let out a frustrated sigh, half of which barely made it out of his mouth before his phone rang again.
Gulliver sat at the top of the mountain cradling a large sandwich between his thick fingers. The realtor, Arian he thought her name was, had run off to catch a group of investors in the southern harbor. He thought of his wife back on the mainland, Nami, and how she had most likely not moved from her spot on the beach; and they called him lazy. Licking the last of the mustard off his fingers he stood up and looked out across the lake. There was a shimmering from the other side by the small island, which must be from the gear that scientist brought up, he thought. That scientist was a strange man, running about fretting. Santorini was a mountain like any other, it was bound to rumble every so often, it’s not like something bad was going to happen. Plus, Gulliver had seen a volcano erupt before; Hawaii was far from dangerous, even he could outrun those flows.
Gulliver noticed the scientist running back up the mountain. The number of times that man was running up and down made Gulliver out of breath just thinking about it. He snapped a couple pictures of the odd man, who was now bent over another one of his machines, and continued to walk around the lake. Walking over some loose soil and dead grass he noticed he was short of breath and stopped to catch it. He didn’t think he was working that hard and when stopping didn’t make him feel better he decided to turn around. Suddenly the ground shook beneath him sending him sprawling forward. A small rift opened in front of him and gas shot from it. Gulliver gasped for air but his lungs filled with the horrible smelling gas. He fell to his knees groping at his throat. Finally he collapsed and rolled down the slope, his hand splashing into the lake, which bubbled violently.
A second, more violent quake rocked Ace off his feet and gas erupted from the side of the crater. When Ace stood he saw someone rolling down the slope and nearly splashed into the lake. He was about to run toward the man when something fell on his arm. He looked down to see bits of gray snow falling around him. Realizing suddenly what the “snow” was he whipped around to find a column of smoke and ash billowing out of the small dome-island. Ace had witnessed his fair share of eruptions but usually from the minimum-safety distance. Standing right in front of the beast and to feel the heat radiating out of it was truly splendid and horrifying at the same time. At that moment all his training told him to run like hell and don’t look back, but at the same time there was a small voice that whispered, “get closer, get the data, think of the prestige.” Without as much as a second thought, he ran toward his machines and began to record everything that he could, that’s when it all fell apart. His back to the erupting dome, he couldn’t see the particulates too large to gain altitude. The first bomb landed next to him, its contents exploding out like a popped water balloon from hell. The contents peppered the machines and sizzled, causing Ace to whip around just in time for something sharp and sweltering to tear through his left shoulder. What blood vessels not cauterized by the bomb poured blood down his chest and onto his hands. In a vain attempted to save his data, the gear he had grabbed slid from his hands, slick from the blood. Thinking solely for his life at this point he ran for the trail. Another bomb slammed into his thigh, causing his pants to light on fire. His skin blistered and burned beneath his flaming clothes. Ace stumbled and fell onto his face, with a sense of finality another bomb collided with the back of his head and everything faded in a fiery inferno.
While she often pretended not to listen to her father, volcanoes were always something she paid attention to. Feeling the earlier quake and watching the column of ash rise into the sky Kalie felt an overwhelming sense of dread.
“We have to get up there and see if my father is alright!” She almost screamed in panic.
“Shouldn’t we go back to the harbor?” Xavier asked timidly.
In her fury she could have slapped that sheepish look off his face but instead she taunted, “Well if you can’t take the climb then I suggest you head back.”
“It’s not me, I’m just worried about you. Your shoes aren’t exactly made for that kind of slope…” Xavier said eyes down cast. She immediately regretted her harsh words, for she knew he was right. Her father would have told her to go back and go the opposite direction from such a force of nature, but he was up there and could be hurt.
“I’m sorry. I need to make sure that he is okay. Will you come with me?” She said reaching a hand down. He smiled up at her and warily took her hand.
They climbed up the face of the crater wall toward the summit along a long rift. About half way up they had to stop to catch their breaths but Kalie insisted they keep moving. In a rush to get to the next ledge, her sandal gave out from under her and she slipped off the face.
“Kalie!!” Xavier screamed and worked his way down to the rift. Kalie had managed to grab on to the edge of the rift but she was covered in small cuts and scrapes.
“Xavier, help. I can’t hold on,” she yelled out to him. As he got close to her, a faint clinking sound filled the air. Finally he stood on the ledge over her, the heat was intense. Beneath her the dark ground seemed to shift and groan. The clinking sound roared from the moving mass. One of Kalie’s sandals slipped from her foot and fell onto the rocks bursting into flame.
“A’a!” Kalie exclaimed starting to freak out, causing herself only more scrapes. When Xavier looked down at her confused as he was climbing, she sobbed, “lava!”
Kalie could feel the cuts in her arms and herself slipping. Xavier wasn’t going to make it. Her grip slid out from under her and she slid from the rim of the rift. As she fell she could see the horror in Xavier’s eyes and the red glow of the lava in their reflection.
Xavier watched as Kalie lost her grip and fell into the rift. He watched in horror as her legs caught her fall and the flesh bubbled and blackened. She let out a bloodcurdling scream and fell onto her hands and knees. The spiny lava pushed itself into her hands and burnt legs. Xavier rolled over feeling like he would be sick. Looking up at the sky, all he could do was listen as her screams slowly died down and stopped. He lay there shaking, for how long he didn’t know.
Suddenly a rock jumped onto his chest. It wasn’t just him who was shaking; the entire slope seemed to quiver suddenly. The rocks around him bounced and rattled over the clinking below. He sat up in time to see a large slide of rocks coming down the slope. A massive rock flew through the air and landed on his legs. Xavier hollered as the world went black.
“This is really a great time to buy,” Arian went through the basic line in her head as she watched the pillar of ash climb into the sky, “Ha!” All her investors had run off back to their private planes or something and she was stuck in the harbor with a bunch of other tourists. What a wonderful day it had been, dealing with the horribly large man in the morning and the whole boat ride over, having the volcano erupt, and now she was stuck with a bunch of tourists. On top of all that she had lost the majority of her clients.
She stood outside the harbor building looking up at the mountain. Loose debris and rocks were sliding all over the slope. She snapped to focus when she heard high-pitched screams coming from the mountain but they were soon over passed by a deafening roar. The ground shook again and the wall of the crater came sliding out. Water gushed from the opening as the entire lake drained out the southeastern side. The water collected rocks and ash turning into a gray/brown sludge that carved down the slope with increasing speeds. Arian had lived her whole life on and around the Aegean Sea and never before had she seen anything that rivaled the monstrosity that was barreling down towards the harbor.
“What the heck?”
“Oh my god!!”
“Were all gonna die–” the tourists erupted in a fit of panic.
“–We are not going to die! Try to stay calm.” Arian yelled above the crowd trying calm people down but people simply pushed her out of the way in the mad dash for the dock. Boats were being swamped and capsizing, some people even tried to swim away from the island. Glancing back up the mountain she saw the mud was gaining at incredible speeds. She ran into her real estate building and made for the safe. She had entered the first two numbers when the windows above her shattered and the dark slurry poured in. The mud was incredibly abrasive and tore at her legs as she abandoned the floor for a table. The wall sagged and gave way then and the mud swallowed her and the rest of the small harbor before pouring into the sea spreading the brown liquid out as far as the larger islands.
“Try and stay calm. Everything is going to be all right. The ferries are on their way over as we speak,” August was trying to get a handle on the situation. Ash rained down on the larger north harbor and people were panicking. It was up to him to quell the uprising that had begun.
“Marcus?” He yelled above the crowd looking for some assistance. He caught a quick glimpse of the small man hopping in a dinghy and roaring off without a second glance, “goddammit!” August stormed off to the front of the crowd.
“If we can form an orderly line–” He began but was cut off by a tremendous bang, the force of which knocked him from his feet. Shaken and blurry-eyed, he stood to find the world quiet around him. People ran about screaming but no words came from their mouths, children cried silently, and rocks fell against the sidewalk with no sound at all. August looked up toward the mountain in horror to find that the entire top of it had blown off and was now rocketing into the sky. He reached up to feel his ears and his fingers came away wet. Looking down at his hands he squinted to focus at their new red coloration. He closed his eyes to steady himself and then looked back at the mountain, but this time all he saw was a massive black cloud roaring down, almost on top of them. He started to run then, stumbling and tripping over the ash in the street, he dared not look back. The hairs on the back of his neck started to sizzle and he could feel an immense heat behind him. Soon his finely pressed suit began to smoke and he paused to strip his jacket off. As soon as he stood upright again he was hit by a blast of hot air and rock. His flesh was scorched and he collapsed in pain. Curled in a ball, he was roasted by the dark cloud and slipped away, unable to hear himself screaming.
Nami had opted to stay back and lie around on the beaches of Greece, which suited her nicely. Any vacation, heck any circumstance, where you could lie around all day sounded like a good time to her. He husband, Gulliver, and son, Xavier, had gone to the island of Santorini for the day. They wanted an adventure; she was inclined not to stop them. She lay there on her beach chair, an unopened book beside her, happy.
Suddenly a loud explosion rocketed through the air. Nami sat up and removed her sunglasses to find a small column of black smoke rising high into the air from far off shore. She raised an eyebrow, replaced her glasses and lay back down. She dozed off for a bit before shouts from the beach woke her again. This time she got up and walked to the shoreline to see what the commotion was.
The entire shoreline had receded a good twenty feet out and people were running out to check out the fish and sea life left flopping on the shore. Mildly interested she walked down, people pushing past her to get a closer look. The sand was warm from the water and she looked down at a small fish that flapped at her feet. She was about to bend down when a loud rumble filled the air. Looking up she saw the water was coming back, with a vengeance. A wave that reached far above her dwarfed the buildings behind her. Her eyes wide, she stood there in disbelief and people, screaming, ran past her. Soon the wave was over her head blacking out the sun in a watery rage. She closed her eyes as the white water crashed down on top of her.
“It has been fifteen years to the day since the eruption of Santorini demolished much of the Aegean Sea and coastlines of Greece, Turkey, and Crete,” the television blared. Xavier took an uneasy breath and rolled his wheelchair toward the box and slammed his fist into the power button. The doctors had said a massive boulder had crushed his legs; the same boulder rescuers said had saved his life. The volcano had blown out the northern side mainly and the resulting debris avoided where he was trapped. They say he was lucky to be alive and that it was a miracle. He had lost both his parents on that day, watched a young girl die horribly, and been permanently crippled.
“A miracle?” he thought, “No, this was much worse. This was an inescapable curse.” Coughing he rolled himself back to the window where a tank of oxygen sat. The amount of ash he has breathed in had torn his lungs making it impossible for him to exert himself much more than getting around his new flat without a coughing fit. So many people died that day; the volcano caused so much damage. “Those who died had it easy,” he thought, “they didn’t have to live with the pain of loss or the physical pain of injury.” He knew there were others who had survived the eruption but he was the only one on the island of Nea Kameni to come away alive…sometimes he wished he hadn’t.
Volcanic Eruption Sequence:
1. Minor quake
2. Secondary quake, gas release, main vent opens – ash column
3. Lava flows down southeastern slope
4. Tertiary quake loosens debris on southeastern slope = landslide
a. Crater lake empties into southeast harbor = lahar
5. Main eruption – dome explodes, pyro flow/surge down northern slope
6. Pyro flow/surge causes tsunami – hits Greece
Ace – 46, Scientist, death by bombs
August Julius – 63, Politician, death by pyro flow
Gulliver Camber – 52, Tourist, Husband of Nami, death by gas emission
Nami Camber – 50, Tourist, Wife of Gulliver, death by tsunami
Xavier Camber – 19, Tourist, Son of Nami and Gulliver, lost legs to landslide
Arian – 31, Relator, death by lahar
Kalie – 18, Ace’s daughter, death by lava
Just for Fun:
· Every character has some basis on one of the 7 deadly sins: Ace-Pride, August-Wrath, Gulliver-Glutton, Nami-Sloth, Xavier-Envy, Arian-Greed, and Kalie-Lust.
· Most names have important meanings:
o August Julian – Augustus Julius like Cesar, very wrathful
o Gulliver – means glutton
o Nami – means wave in Japanese
o Xavier – Xavier=Savior=only one to survive
o Arian – means money in Welsh
o Ace – means hot shot
· August is betrayed by a Marcus, much like Cesar is.
Most of the hazards were picked to be ironic. Gulliver/Glutton dies by gas emission, Kalie/Lust dies by lava=hot, Nami/Wave dies by tsunami
Hello my lovely people (all five of you). It is me, your short story writing geologist. I know, shocker, who else would it be. But! I have happy news. Due to my lovely friend Alex, and our strangely synced minds, I will be posting a new series. Wahoo *the crowd goes wild*. I give all props to her for having such wonderful dreams and then sharing them with me. It will follow the happenstance adventures of our possible future selves during our life in a flat in Berlin. Thus for the title, *here’s the big reveal*, the series will be called The Berlin Flat. Also a shock, I know, it doesn’t say that in the title or anything. Anywho, they will follow much of my same style of short stories but there will be names. Finally, no more him to his to him to it. Not that I don’t love writing like that, or that those will stop, but it will be a nice change in pace. So, from the wonderful mind of Alex and the words of me, I hope you enjoy! If you don’t I’m terribly sorry but then why are you here anyway… Hope y’all are well and plan to hear again from me soon.