Category: Short Stories

Bloody Mary

Bloody Mary
© 2017 John F. Rychlicki III Leilah Publications
All rights reserved.

New Jersey has its tall tales of fright and disturbing legends from the “Jersey Devil,” to “Mothman,” “Mother Leeds,” and “the Witch of the Pine Barrens.”  There is one figure among New Jersey residents old enough to remember, words best forgotten in its dark history, for it strikes one ill at ease, sick, and silently terrified:  Bloody Mary.

1994….Greystone Park Hospital, New Jersey. 

Mary was beaming as always, smiling and waving wildly at her patients as she strode through the “independent living” apartments in Curry Cottage.  The cottages were inpatient shared apartments sitting among the flowered gardens of the psychiatric park.  Mary loosened her white shawl as the heat kicked in, contrasting with the cold autumn breeze outside.  She paused to look out the windows of one of the connected hallways.  The leaves were so pretty strewn about all over the ground in so many bright pretty colors.

Dr. Mintz, good morning.”  Mary beamed at the resident M.D.  “Good morning Mary, did everyone go out on the trip?  Just you and Marsha keeping us on track today huh?”  Mary pursed her lips as she glanced at her clipboard, looking over her roster for all the residents.  “Everyone who signed up yes!  They’re going to have so much fun!”  She giggled.  Mary tilted her head playfully and offered her cutest smile.

The twenty-something year old brunette contributed on with her clipboard in hand, pens stuck in her hair, done up professionally.  She was a favorite among the staff, and their patients, young and attractive, she held an aura of playful and teasing sex appeal.  She knew how the patients and some of the staff looked at her, and brushed it off.  Guys were just guys, what else were they supposed to do?

Mary came to Sherman’s door and rapped gently.  She heard a muffled response above the Judas Priest playing behind the door.  “Hey Sherm, group time in about 15 ok?  Make sure everything’s cleaned up in there hon.  15 minutes, k?”  She continued around the corner to Chris’ door, she could hear his loud obnoxious snoring as she approached his door.  She opened it enough to knock on the inside.  “Christopher!  CHRIS!! Wake up buddy! CHRIS!” She shouted loud enough for Chris to turn on his side.  “Group in 15 minutes!”  Satisfied at seeing his eyes open she left down the hall.

She passed on to the next apartment, knocking and opening to check and see how clean the place was.  Phillie, Ernie, and Joe were already in the lounge playing cards.  Chris, along with Phillip and Ernie made up the “Wild Boys” as the staff nicknamed them after the popular ‘Duran Duran’ song.  They were trouble, the staff knew it, and all the patients in the cottage knew it.  Mary knew all three of them had been brutally abused during their childhood, a commonality with all park residents.  Every girl and guy had suffered unspeakable trauma at the hands of those they loved and trusted the most.

Everyone could trust Mary, she was the cool protective older sister the boys never had.  Mary loved all the residents, she related having been through a rough childhood herself.  She was proud of her accomplishments, having come so far in life.  She was there to care and protect her “family” as she called them.   She was the family they could all trust, and confide in.

Mary finished her rounds and circled back to the main rec lounge, watching the leaves swirl around in the breeze outside.  The “Wild Boys,” Chris, Phillie, Ernie, and their lackey Joe were all chatting and sitting together.  ‘Poor Joe,’ he’s so lost and just wants to fit in she thought.  Sherman, tall dark and lean, slouched in the corner fidgeting with his Walkman.  Judith, short freckled and chubby sat with her friend Shawna, a gorgeous young girl with light brown hair and eyes the color of the grey sky outside.  Shawna, Mary knew, practiced witchcraft and was good at it.  Mary did not approve of it, having been exposed to it deep in her family heritage.

Mary clasped her crucifix given to her by a nun at Greystone who had visited since 1947 until her death three years earlier.  Mother Sabrina was like a mother to her, and a grandmother to all the staff and residents.  She led the group in prayer as Mother Sabrina had so often done.  “In Jesus’ name, Amen.”  She smiled and looked up as Dr. Mintz smiled and nodded approvingly at her.  The group began and progressed monotonously as every group had. What Mary and Dr. Mintz in all their understanding of clinical psychology did not notice, was a dangerous simmering hatred within the group.

Goals and independent living “plans” were discussed, scheduling with case workers, appointments, meds and any changes; the usual.  The group discussion shifted after nearly an hour to last week’s “incident” with Jason, another resident who was Shawna’s longtime boyfriend and a full fledged Satanist.

Shawna was still upset Jason was moved across the park to Kirkbride, his visitation privileges suspended.  Both she and Jason believed Sherman had tipped off staff of their getting marijuana and alcohol smuggled in.  That would explain his enhanced privileges, and extended overnight passes out of the Park.

The Wild Boys were furious at Joe, who had helped Jason jump and beat up Sherman in exchange for sex with Judith.  Judith did everything Jason and Shawna demanded because they were all getting an apartment together when they “got out” of the Park.  Judith also wanted the oxy, which her doctor expressly forbade, but Jason and Shawna were happy to provide her.

Chris and the “Wild Boys” were pissed because their smuggled alcohol was cut off by Shawna and Jason in exchange for their lithium.  Chris and Jason were inseparable brothers, having been in Marlboro State Psychiatric Hospital together.  That all changed when Jason fell in love with Shawna.  Chris was far and ugly and he knew it, all the girls said it, everybody knew it.  He was a thirty something year old virgin.  The only sexual pleasure he got was shooting up heroine.

Shawna was complaining about Jason’s extended loss of outdoor privileges.  Sherman was shifting uncomfortably, Phillie was ogling Mary ravaging her in his broken mind, Ernie and Joe were on the verge of screaming at one another, while Chris and Shawna were quietly observing along with Judith.

Mary could barely keep up with jotting down her notes and observations, as Dr. Berkenkamp talked above the ruckus.  “Ok guys that’s it for now.  Shawna I want to see you and Judith in my office after dinner tonight, before I leave.  Ok let’s all remember today’s focus word, DEDICATION.  Ok?  Dedication.  Dedication to your goals and progress.  We will talk this out and resolve these issues respectfully and appropriately.”

Mary jotted down Dr. Mintz’s remarks.  “Dedicate my dick.”  Chris blurted out as everyone got up to go line up, waiting for nurse Marsha to dispense evening meds.  That night, Jason snuck back into Curry cottage and disappeared with Shawna, Chris, and Judith.  They were nowhere to be found three nights before Halloween.

They missed midnight and 3am head count, and Mary was getting worried sick.  Security could not locate the four troublemakers.  2 full days had passed, police and family were noticed and the entire Park was placed on lockdown with all visitation suspended.  Rooms were searched, contraband confiscated, but no Shawna, Jason, Judith, or Chris.  Mary feared the worst.  The four always were up to mischief this time of year she reassured herself.  Last Halloween they were a few days late coming back from an over night pass.  All four had their visitations and passes revoked for a month.

In ’92 Jason and Shawna were caught in old abandoned Murdow Ward leading 3 staff members and 4 other residents in some bizarre witchcraft ritual.  Jason and Shawna culminated the black magic rite by having cocaine induced sex in front of the crowd.  The doctors and directors could not prove a thing, but word spread quickly to the residents and staff from eyewitnesses.

‘What if…….’  Mary thought.  She gathered her white shawl around herself, grabbed and flashlight and radio from the security desk, and set out to confirm her suspicions.  She marched ankle deep through the leaves, swirling them around as she headed toward the old Kirkbride Building.  Her flashlight lead the way as she unlocked the side entry doors with the security keys.  She didn’t know how to use the radio, but ‘Come hell or high water, I will call for help if something’s amiss.’ She thought.

As she continued on into Kirkbride she unlocked the administration office and turned on the auxiliary lighting.  Main power was shut off in 1989, when the last of the patients were moved to the cottages.  Auxiliary power provided enough lighting for Mary to search each wing.  As she passed each wing she could see strange symbols and unfamiliar written languages all over the walls.

I know they’re in here.”  She said to herself.  “I know you’re in here!” She shouted aloud, hopelessly awaiting a response.  Unwilling to stay in the abandoned building any longer, she made her back out to the main entry foyer.  As she began to exit she noticed a dim light emanating from the other side of the building, coming from the basements.

Kirkbride had 4 main storage basements, 2 connected via an underground walkway.  Walking downstairs from the west wing, she clearly could see light shimmering downstairs.  Her flashlight illuminated more bizarre sigils and ancient written languages scrawled in the walls.  The light illuminated the storage basement as she stopped in front of the double doors to the next storage basement.  She could hear whispering in a language she hadn’t heard since she was little, since before Momma died.

Mary pulled out the security radio after she flung open the double doors, “You are all…in…….” her words silenced as the flashlight illuminated the bloody faces of Shawna, Jason, Judith, and Chris.  Judith was tied into a 6 4 foot high rectangular wooden altar with sigils painted all around the altar; adorned by candles, herbs, incense, animal bones, a dead Raven and dead cat.  The four were naked and had sigils carved all over their body, stabbing themselves repeatedly.  Mary heard the inhuman sibilant sreech and howl from behind her, first.  She turned, barley glimpsing the living shadow claw at her, as she slipped into darkness.

That night, on All Hallows’ Eve, the living shadows crawled up from the catacombs, and demons cascaded into Greystone, unseen by those who could not accept the violent madness descending on the accursed hospital.  Madness and the most evil suffocating living shadows crawled up to consume the broken minds of the residents and their tormentors, their drug overlords.

Mary was raped and brutalized repeatedly, over and over and over for 7 days.

She never never screamed, she never made a sound, because Momma and Poppa told her always to be quiet when the Game began.

And everybody played the Game with little Mary.  Mary was always quiet when the witches and Momma and Poppa played the Game with Mary.

No one looked for Mary, because she was home.  She had always been home, born in Greystone to her momma and poppa.  She was always the best patient.  This was her home it always had been.

Mary never screamed or made a sound….except for the knocking of her head against the wall …constantly.

Staff found her in her room…knocking her head against the wall ….over….and over….and over…knockknockknockknockknock….

Autumn turned into a freezing New Jersey winter, the colorful leaves turned dead and into icey slush.  Mary never said a word again until Christmas Eve.  “Can I play?” Said little Mary staring back at her from the mirror.

On Christmas morning, Mary came out to play…

Ernie was found hanging from a leafless tree outside in the courtyard.  Phillie was found naked and unconscious in a warm bath castrated and with his tongue cut out of his mouth.  The bath was full of blood.  Judith was found tied to a wheelchair and tortured.  She died in a coma 3 weeks later.  Sherman was found naked in the fetal position also in a bath, foaming at the mouth and nostrils.  He was sexually assaulted and deceased.  Shawna’s head was found in the medication storage cabinet.  Her body was nude on her bed.

Joe’s death was ruled a suicide, as he also found nude in a bath.  He had slit his wrists and bled out, his eyes wide open.  Chris was founded drugged, his arms shot full of turpentine, burned and disfigured for life, he survived his brutal forced injections.  Jason was found nude and in the midst of seizures in his room.  He survived and was discharged after months of physical therapy.

Bloody Mary was never prosecuted or charged with any crime.  She remained in Curry Cottage.  The next few years, Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital descended to inhuman evil.  Staff frequently were accused of sexually assaulting patients, and patients were frequently drugged furthering their broken minds, and drug-fueled sexual assaults in retaliation against staff.  Demons walked freely in the abandoned wards of the psychiatric hospital.

Bloody Mary was happy in her home.  At night, you could hear the constant knocking sound of a head banging against a wall …

From every room…..



Michael Jason Spence pulled up in his black 89 Camaro, walking up with his new girlfriend, a very pretty slender woman, with sad dark brown eyes and light brown hair.  Mike’s monthly girl I guessed.  Boy she was beautiful, sullen and beautiful.  Mike and his new fling looked like they had some from a Judas Priest concert.  Mike nodded at me.  “Hey man, this is my girlfriend Mary.”

No one ever knew what happened to Bloody Mary.  Except two people.

Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital was closed and demolished in 2008.  God have mercy.


© 2017 Jessica Rose Villanueva Leilah Publications
All rights reserved.

God and Satan – they infused me in their Dimensions.

God and Satan debated who would take my soul one night.

This is what changed my life forever.

I will begin with the phenomenon of my inability to speak or make any sounds at all. This was my second aphasia.

For the entire two months prior to Christmas my voice was taken away from me. After everything I’ve been through, losing the ability to talk and use my voice in an expression of my defense Or other emotions was a perfect form of torture.

Like not being able to tell my baby that I love her so much. Or say anything ay all.

It was the most unfair, frustrating, broken hearted punishment I’ve ever suffered. It was because for a long while I had been talking too much and not listening.

It was karma’s exact punishment. I lost the comfort of hearing my cries. I used to become sick and scared of that sound. I used to make a sickening sound when I was crying out loud.

To miss something this uncomfortable has exhausted my appreciation for silence.

When I was spinning I could never seem the control my loquacity. The irritation was quite beyond annoyance to anyone was around me while I was high. I never shut up. Speaking arrogantly and way to fast. This was no known human language.

This is a big reason why I rarely got high with others. I grew to despise my beliefs and question every word I blabbed. I recommended that everyone who suffered my noise should invest in a gag ball. Hot pink of course with a tight leather strap fastened around my face.

I meant it and I would wear it! Only because I had to be silenced by force. My aphasia taught me what utter loneliness really feels like. I once associated this with being the only one left on earth. Entirely lost. I could not even whisper. Perhaps Not even my breathing could be heard. I went to doctor several times and nothing could be prescribed and there was no diagnosis. I was openly honest about my drug abuse and explained that I believed I was given a toxic mixture of meth to smoke. I was referred to a throat specialist who would perform a vocal cord scrapping to look at the microscopic detail of my throat tissue. The only cure in existence was to go through this fear and to coming out open.

Excitedly I begin to listen to the wisdom from others minds. Such beauty and idiocy and true knowledge did exist in others besides myself.  Everyone around me would ask me write down what they could do to help me but by the time I had a chance to express exactly what I needed they would ask another question.

Forgetting my desperate explanation  that I was trying to swiftly jot down because I knew exactly what would work.

Not having the human right to answer is unfair. During this time I was in the violent throws of an addiction to my self mutilation.

This time it was in a needle form. My mind now somewhere lost in another dimension. Far from an earth bound reality.

Impossible events begin to occur.  It was my goal was to be 60hrs awake. By this time my hallucinations became extraordinarily powerful!

I believed that I could control certain dimensions. I held experiments with telekinesis.

The study of moving solid objects out of sight making them completely vanish. This would really work! I just didn’t know how to control which objects would disappear or when they’d return. However, Always in the exact moment when a thing would go missing, I could know the precise location where it vanished from (like a shelf) n what the object was. At first I didn’t notice this taking place for subtle tings like lighters or pens would move right as I put them down. I would rip the house apart searching every where for it!  Then suddenly it would be sitting there as if it never moved at all! A lot of people witnessed this with me!  Even straight ones.

Once I begin to document certain patterns, it slightly changed to disappearance but then nothing would return for a month or on a new binge it would return to the spot it left.

I studied transference as well. Others quickly became confused n terrified by this invasion so I tried not to practice this natural phenomenon with them even though it was available. Being my style to stay constantly awake I deprived my subconscious and physical of sleep. This forced my dreams to intertwine with my waking reality.

I would often experience intense vivid dreams while wide awake but most of the time these were nightmares.

I remember one of my most powerful mind altering episodes, hallucination, dream or actual event taking place way too perfectly. I was not alone in this documented phenomenon. On one occurrence there was a witnesses. I had been consuming nothing but straight vodka and tweak for almost ten days by this time severe delirium accompanied by dehydration caused deep cracks in my mind  and skin that it would open up wide without any incision. It in was the dead of winter.

Ten days of toxicity and I was driving at about 3am. I kept falling out at the wheel. Every time I did this I woke myself just bfore I crashed the car by the sound of my silent screaming!

So hard in my throat that I tasted blood! I tried to drive faster so I could survive my way back home. Miraculously I made it to my block. Speeding, only two houses away from mine and I crashed into my neighbor’s chain link fence. I crushed it down flat by my car! This loud collision woke me up in my neighbor’s front yard! I was so terrified I fled the scene and hid my car a few blocks away.

The front of my car was scrapped and a headlight was busted out. It didn’t light up. Leaving the car running I ran home and reached my front yard. Every light was on inside and people I didn’t know were everywhere in my house. I could see them all from outside through the huge front window. So I ran to the back door because I was afraid of who they are and why they were in my house!  A junkie staying with me was supposed to be there alone. As I approached the rear door window I could see inside and into the doorway of the basement. Out of the dark and up the stairs ran the junky!  She reached the top and jumped in fright at the sight of me at the back door looking in. She opened the door for me and said that she heard a loud car crash up the street. She thought it was me and another vehicle. She looked up the street but all was still in the night. She was the only one home.

About an hour later we walked by the yard I hit but the chain link fence was untouched and the lawn had no tire impressions. I started to consider that it was a nightmare or a real bad hallucination.  We walked to my car and came to find it still running but no broken headlight or scratched hood. The junkie got inside and stopped the ignition. Now that my proof disappeared I was convinced that it had been a hallucination which I had manifested so potentially that it became semi shared with the junky but not the with the others in this world.

The next entrance into my parallel universe was on a night I honestly trusted that if I fell out I’d die. I could not force myself awake any longer even after the thick dose I had just minutes before injected. When I was fixing in my bathroom I had a rotten syringe contaminated by Hep. C. I carelessly flushed it with bleach but in my haste to chase consciousness, I left a small amount of pure bleach in the rig when I drew up my shot. The needle was so dull it should have broken off inside my vein. Somehow more foreign then the bleach laced chemical intoxicant I injected, this tiny needle was 100% deadly if broken off into my blood stream, it would have followed the dope through my veins causing my demise.

Right after I slammed I dropped some shards into the sink. The dope turned a crimson color n smelled strange. Like the taste when I coughed.  I was in my room now I stood alone less then a foot from my bed and I remember praying and desperately summoning any sort of power to will myself safely into bed but I could not. I kept repeating out loud that I was about to get hurt so bad and if I can just make it to any part of my bed or floor I would be safe but I stood frozen with predictions in visions. I saw what was about to happen any second I saw physically bodily intense pain. In my mind I saw myself crash hard backwards into my television and mirror.

Before my vision was over it happened. I did fall down very hard. I suffered a head injury and deep cuts in my back and ass from the glass mirror I shattered with the entire 97 lbs of my dead weight. Naturally this woke me up enough to crawl into bed. I woke up terrified.  Covered in dried blood that one couldn’t see because of the black clothing I was wearing. The glass still inside these wounds I failed to prevent by violently falling out this way.

By my mothers prayer my hell dreaming eyes did open again in life. Automatically they focused on the gram of poison on my bedside table just waiting for me to play again. How could my saviors miss this?!  My mother and crack whore sister were in my room with me attempting the most pathetic intervention. They threatened to commit me! This was entirely possible considering my ruthless addiction I just as bad flaunted with my arms so bruised infected from often missing my fix. It was only a desperate attempt at forgiving themselves because all my life they felt as though they didn’t protect me, and in denial they knew thy could never protect me from myself!  *Looking back at the dangers of going that long and so close to the edge alone all the time. Its is plain to see an attraction that demonic entities had to me. Of course at the time I was oblivious to anything real or comprehensible.*

I used lament in a loneliness despair I could control but I was never alone at all. Statistic and sneaky Silhouettes haunted me so darkly drab. On an unknown level my only defense mechanism was to ignore the coldness coming from inside my body. It was A form of blocking out them in trauma. This only allowed them to drag me down deeper. This was a descent where we  meet so they may crawl into my soul coiling there dormant (I always that I was so alone but never once while using they were there the whole time. Now I recognize it without hesitation) I was so accustomed to the unhealthy weight loss that dropping 15lbs in two days way nothing surprising.

Do not forget the fact that during it all I had no voice!  Everyone would try to help me and ask me what they could do for me but by the time I had a chance to write down exactly what I needed, they would ask another question.  Sometimes they started yelling at me because I could not cry anymore and I needed to purge my emotions.  My gestures and animated facial expressions in agony and torment became offensive and to terrifying for them to take so I walked away alone.  I wanted to find my friend of despair because she was my heroine; she embraced her adictions and excepted that it woiuld never change.She had thrown in her towel with her acknowledgment of God.  Lost but surviving. I found her and we walked to a house that my angel was living in. He was not home but just moments after I left he showed up. Just missing each other.

Snow was falling softly on Christmas Eve and twilight was setting in. I ended up right back at home and before I went inside I looked around and noticed cars and human activity outside. Families were celebrating Christmas Eve. Once I closed the door I instantly felt two extreme changes in my atmosphere. The first I will describe because it was entirely foreign to me. It was a pure and utter evil surrounding me. Not the usual familiar evil presence I always felt around since I started using. That presence was only some extension of an evil demonic entity. The energy and vibes that were with me now was an entirely new kind of fear, like  Satan carries, and it brought with it a confirmation of my death.

This fowl force  was here to take me to hell. Every fiber of my being knew that I was going to die by Satan’s will violently…right now! I felt a freezing cold again coming from inside of my body and nothing could make me warm. My soul was freezing. In unison with this morbidity came a divinity.  I know this grace has always been inside of me since my creation and now was revealing it’s ghostly presence stronger then ever before. I felt like myself. I felt that the Holy Ghost understood and was perfectly familiar to my own soul all of my life. This was proof that God surrounded me now!  In one quick thought I knew that God is my heart and always has been.

Time slipped away. I was no longer existing with the rest of human life. Outside it was almost pitch dark. Dim street lights flickered but not people. There was a battle taking place. God and Satan were in a fierce pesronal debate over  who gets to take me soul with them upon my death.  My entire life and everything I have ever done was being weighed considered and judged. The only thing that was true was that I was going to die no matter what. This encounter did exist in time. It never changed outside and everyone disappeared.

I quickly became guilty when a rip in the fabric of life revealed to me God and Satan’s conversation. It looked a bit like two ethereal figures playing chess. I tried to object. I tried to speak on my behalf. Give them excuses, but I was unnoticed. The whole time I was psychologically aware of this event but evry so often, I would  glimpse a second of their ethereal shapes. More often I would overhear their discussion on my whole life, even my subconscious!  I lost track of time before this debate’s conclusion. Unexplainable triviality occurred. I felt a strong life or death need to document exact words used by God and Satan, if I happened to overhear them, but not a single thing to write with could be found!  My family removed everything thing inside for paraphernalia purposes.  No lead in pencils.  There was not a single thing to write on.

I was so sad and badly needed to say goodbye so I focused most of my remaining time on summoning loved ones with my mind. I locked myself in meditation. As I was in a state of self hypnosis, the phone rang!  It was someone still living! I was not forgotten. When I picked up the receiver it was a person who I was not right with. I managed to utter a shaky wail. This infuriated the caller, and the line dropped. Memories eased my awareness falling into sleep. I thought I would have a painless death, agreed by God and Satan, but only to pass this body and enter damnation. I did not dream.  Two days after the great debate between God and Satan over the fate of my soul, I awoke alone but my soul just felt relieved.

I understood that my life was stiill at it’s lowest and I was still sick with poisonous addiction, yet now I had a plan and it was like I was  fixing someone else’s problem. Constructed inside of me now was a change of soul. I had solutions!  I had honest faith in my recovery. God has a perfect design for my life. Perhaps prior to this alteration my soul was damned in innocence. The old violence cursed my entire life until this moment of forgiveness. I was Existing in a totally tormented reality. My childhood purity lost. My eyes opened up disgustingly. I still had no voice. My heart and soul deeply cracked in pain, and then in a flood of relief. I was alive.

Eldridge and the Cage

Eldridge and the Cage
© Copyright 2017 · John F. Rychlicki III · Leilah Publications · All Rights Reserved ·

For Frau Immel and Sifu Robert

Once there was a terrible man full of despair and violent loneliness.  Angered at losing his job he took to drinking and numbing himself by washing away all his emotions in bottles of alcohol.  Passersby scoffed at him in disgust, he remained trapped in a world that refused to recognize him or acknowledge his suffering and hopelessness.  Each night jobless, half sober he would wander deeper into the city’s shadows and underground indiscretions.  One night he found himself in the familiar numbness of hopelessness, self-hatred, and anger.  The man of despair could not feel, could not love, could not die.  He found himself chasing the creeping shadows at the edge of the city’s urban sprawl.

He came upon a mans small and modest house, smelling the scent of a fine meal being prepared.   The man of despair crept up to the window, and  spied another man eating alone inside at the table, reading a book.  He quietly but clumsily made his way round to the back yard, unclasped the gate and crept to the back door.   With a *click* he found the back door was unlocked and open.  He quietly crept inside making his way to the kitchen.

Stepping slowly until he reached the kitchen doorway, the man of despair rushed and attacked the man sitting at the table.  The man in the home quickly immobilized him with a form of martial art called Jeet Kune Do.  The man who was eating dragged the half-conscious man of despair into a makeshift cage.  The man of despair cried out “I’m going to kill your ass!  And your family!”

“I live alone, have no family my friend.”  The man of the house said.

“Let me out!  Bastard!” The man of despair said.

“Are you hungry?  Is that why you came into my home?  Do you have nowhere to go?”  The man of the house said.

“Fuck you!  What do you care, die!  Just kill me.  Kill yourself, I don’t care! Let me out!” The man of despair said.

“My name is Shimoda.”  The man of the house said.  “What’s yours?  I won’t harm you.  Here, let me get you something to eat, friend.”  Shimoda went to the kitchen counter and prepared him a sandwich with fruit, handing it to the man of despair through the small spaces between the bars of the cage.

“Here, eat.”  Shimoda said.  “You know, in case you’re wondering, it’s called Jeet Kune Do.”  Shimoda offered.  “That’s how I immobilized you.”  He smiled warmly.

“Kill me, or I’m gonna’ kill your ass.  Just kill me I don’t care anymore.” the man of despair said.

“Why?” Shimoda asked.  The man of despair was silent and cried, shaking his fists in the air, wincing in a deep pain that drowned him in his own mind.

“I had a companion but he was killed.  He was a wolf and I built that cage for him when I first met him.  He was wild for a time.  Then he got out and would come a visit me time to time.  Eventually he just came and went as he please, though I don’t ever think this was home for him.  He was too wild but curiosity overcame the beast.  I named him Scooby.  Don’t think he liked it.”  Shimoda chuckled at his own joke.

“I can’t do this anymore…too tired…just die….just let me die…kill me….” the man of despair whimpered.

“Tell you what friend, you can leave in the morning or stay with me and learn.  I could use another student.  Sleep on it.”  Shimoda lit a candle as the man of despair passed out.  He dimmed the lights and watched over him throughout the night, as the man of despair twisted and turned his body unnaturally from the nightmares that danced into his mind all night.

Had he gone mad?  He saw what looked like shadows dancing around Shimoda, smiling and cackling at him with the most horrid black faces.

For several days and nights, Shimoda took care and fed the man of despair, each morning asking him, “Good morning friend, I made you breakfast.  Do you still want to kill me?”  The man of despair’s reply was always the same:  “When I get out of this cage, I’m going to kill you, and myself.”  Shimoda would nod, and tell him about Jeet Kune Do.

“Jeet Kune Do, you see, has no definite lines or boundaries — only those you make yourself.” Shimoda said to his guest, who sat in a former wolf’s cage, huddled, listening and slowly letting curiosity take hold.

Shimoda continued his lessons the entire day and throughout the night.

“Use only that which works, and take it from any place you can find it.”  The man of despair listened intently.

“Everything gets returned.  See…your mind is stuck…returning to each cause of pain, each moment where someone hurt you, or you hurt someone else.  You keep going back.  Jeet Kune Do is the way through.”

Eventually the man of despair broke down mentally, sharing how he was a man of cruelty, addiction, anger and loneliness; his family had left him.

The man of despair sobbed and trembled.  “My name is Eldridge.”

“Do you want to stay with me, and learn?  You can work around the house, earn your keep and stay.  Learn, and have your own return.”  Shimdoa said.

Eldridge nodded.

“The door to this cage is unlocked.” Shimoda said.  Eldridge stared in disbelief.

“The door to your cage is unlocked.  I never had a lock for Scooby the wolf.  I never locked it when I put you in.”    Shimoda replied.

*Step out of your cage.  Stop imprisoning yourself in yourself.  God bless you all.

The Curse of Amarna

The Curse of Amarna
© Copyright 2017 · John F. Rychlicki III · Leilah Publications · All Rights Reserved

1319 B.C. Amarna, Egypt

It was all ruins. Tutankhamun was dead, fallen ill from severe injury to his leg caused by a seizure. A black spell had fallen over young Pharaoh Tutankhamun the last days of his life. Seizures and maddened fits grew nightly and commonplace. Pentu the Physician knew the young Pharaoh’s days were numbered by a collusion of the black priests and their sorcery set upon him by the Grand Vizier and the bastard commoner Horemheb.

Pentu despised Horemheb, the new Pharaoh and former Hereditary Prince, the Chief Commander of the Army. Old Vizier Ay, the fool that he was in trusting Horemheb, called him the “Attendant of the King in his footsteps.” Pentu the Physician spat on the ground in spite of both their honorifics.

Akhetaten, his beloved home was all in ruins, “The Unique One of Re,” his beloved Akhenaten, murdered. Pentu knew the official pronouncement of death was not murder of course, but severe illness of the brain. Ankhesenamun, beloved Ankhesenamun, warned him not to declare assassination as the cause of death, until the conspiratorial plots in Amarna were uncovered and exposed by the Imperial Family.

Akhenaten brought the One Religion to the lands of Re. Pentu walked among the smoldering shattered Great Temple of the Aten. The Great Temple, the House of Aten was damaged beyond repair, the interior all sacked and burned over the past year by legions of the bastard Pharaoh Horemheb.

“Aten will curse this country because of this treachery.” Pentu sighed muttered aloud to himself. Horemheb’s troops finished burning and ransacking the Gem-Aten, which was a very long building preceded by a posterior court called the Per-Hai. The main pavilions were smoldering, burned just the other day. The ashes and smoke filled Pentu’s nostrils. “Barbarians.” Pentu lamented. “No better than Hittite dogs.” Just then, movement caught his attention out of the corner of his eyes. Was someone still lingering inside the Great Temple? Bandits? Priests still loyal to Aten perhaps? “Greetings of Aten.” Pentu said. No response. Scavenging dogs. Pentu thought dismissively. This is what has befallen our great Society of Aten. Scavenging dogs. Pentu continued on, inspecting the Temple.

Pentu passed through the successive courts, finding each of them dismantled and altars destroyed. What could be looted was looted, what could be set afire was burned. He passed by the colonnades with colossal statues of Akhenaten, only to find the statutes damaged and broken. Pentu stepped outside the Great Temple of Aten and continued down the main plaza.

Akhenaten in the fifth year of his illustrious reign disbanded the priesthoods of all the other gods…diverting their income from the cults to support the Aten. Pentu knew that was Akhenaten’s undoing. Like his master, the eternal Pharaoh Akhenaten, Pentu believed in the One True God, Aten.

All was ruined. Pentu knew Akhenaten and beloved Ankhesenamun royal line were destined to change Khem, land of eternal Aten forever. In truth, Pentu knew in his heart and soul there was only one God, one All-encompassing Creator. Pentu looked up to Aten, the shining burning disk in the skies, watching over all. Clouds partly obscured the sun, giving a grey pallid overcast to the already dismal day. Pentu circled around back to the columned pavilion stopping before the small chapels on each side. The five pairs of tall masts and crimson imperial pennants flanking the doorway were all burned. The altars ransacked and burned, the interior of the chapels still filled with smoke and ash.

Pentu knelt before the threshold and wept. No sooner than the first tears flowed freely, did he hear the whispering. The whispering could in no way have been produced by a human. Yet Pentu heard the whispering, whispering that no human tongue could have produced. The whispering came from outside the chapel yet he could hear it all around him. “Am I mad?” Pentu stood up and slowly walked outside the chapel. He gazed down the columned pavilion outside the Great Temple. The whispered stopped.

A few moments passed, after what seemed an eternity, started again. “This place is accursed now.” Pentu thought. The black priesthoods were having their revenge. No doubt, they were back by the Medsu’Bedshet, the rumored and feared black priesthood that called themselves “Beloved of Set.” Grand Vizier Ay had only lasted four short years as Pharaoh. Ankhesenamun, the widow of Tutankhamun and the Hittite Prince she was about to marry were murdered at his orders. Now Horemheb had usurped Ay and brought ruin to the House of Aten.

The whispering was not in Pentu’s head. He was not mad! “Is this what beloved Akhenaten heard in his seizures and fits?” He wondered if this ghastly fate was happening to him. What was this accursed sickness? The whispering grew louder. It was coming from the chapel now, but how was that possible? Pentu had just left it. The whispering grew to a feverish pitch, all around him now, he could hear it inside his mind, the whispers, hissing and inhuman.

The frightened physician, once close advisor to Akhenaten tried to cover his hears. To no avail, he could hear the hissing whispers inside his mind, and all around him. Pentu froze suddenly. A figure emerged at the side of the smoldering chapel. It was a human, but had no distinct human features. Pentu could see the form of a voluptuous female beneath crimson and black shawls, a veil covering her face. Where eyes were supposed to be, Pentu saw glowing white eyes peering from behind her veil. The whispering became hissing, rising to a sibilant cackle. The inhuman shadow’s cackle rose to a maddening pitch among the smoldering ruins of Amarna. Pentu let out a bloodcurdling scream as the living shadow approached. Not a living soul heard him.

The Curse of Judea

The Curse of Judea

© Copyright 2014-2017 · John F. Rychlicki III · Leilah Publications · All Rights Reserved ·

1948 A.D. Jerusalem, Palestine

To Eretz-Israel!” Thirty-three year old Yitzhak Shamir led the others in a champagne toast in the underground chambers of Beit El Synagogue. The Zionist directors toasted to a new homeland at the midnight hour of May the 14th. The Jewish political executives present at the secret gathering reveled in a one hundred yearlong effort that would culminate within a mere twelve hours. The young Zionist Shamir had entered into the soon to be established state of Israel via a forged passport. Nothing on Earth was going to stop him and his fellow Zionist colleagues from seeing their dream to fruition. The exclusive congregation of two dozen Zionist executives celebrated and spoke amongst themselves, awaiting the ceremonies to be presided over in secret by highly distinguished Twelve. The Twelve, as Yitzhak Shamir was privy, were an international conclave of distinguished Rabbi scholars.

How do far do you think Truman will go when the Arabs attack?” Shamir asked Chaim Weizmann, a prominent Zionist executive. “Lovett, and Clifford are easy to persuade, they will support anything the Brotherhood tells them, if they want their offshore coffers to continue to fatten. Marshall may be harder to convince, he is just making waves for the next election.” Weizmann replied. “Jabotinsky was right. No American could ever oppose the Brotherhood without being publicly ostracized and politically imperiled. Truman is just a puppet without his string.” Yitzhak Ben-Zvi said. Ben-Zvi was another prominent statesman whose international investments and partnership with American construction companies numbered in millions of dollars. Weizmann’s nephew Ezer and son Benjamin approached the three diplomats. “They are ready.” Ezer said.

Yitzhak Shamir, the Rabbinical liaison between the founding fathers of Eretz-Israel and the Twelve, solemnly spoke to the two dozen gathered Zionists. “Brothers, tonight we undertake destiny’s course. Our brothers have shed blood and died for this day. Adonai has ordained us this Covenant and reclaiming of our rightful Lordship. As you all know the Twelve have come from places afar, and risked their lives to be with us and consecrate this undertaking. Without further delay, let us welcome the Twelve and proceed to Synagogue.” Led by Yitzhak Shamir, Ezer Weizmann (Chaim’s nephew), Benjamin Weizmann, Yitzhak Ben-Zvi, Dov Yosef, Yitzhak_Gruenbaum, Chaim Weizmann, Yitzhak Rabin and Moshe Dayan, and a dozen other Zionist leaders descended into the underground Synagogue at Beit El Synagogue.

The subterranean Synagogue was constructed beneath the public Beit El Synagogue, the leading center of Kabbalistic study. The secret chambers were three times the size of Beit El. The secret Synagogue was cavernous, filled with artificial lighting, and elaborate altars no Rabbi could ever imagine. Towards the end of the reverberating chamber stood the Twelve before the towering twelve-foot central altar, flanked on each side by two lesser altars six feet in height. The Twelve, known to only a secretive few Zionists as the Isiyim, or the Brotherhood. In modern times, the Zedok priesthood would have called them Essenes.

Chief Rabbi Ovadia Hedaya of Beit El Synagogue turned to face the nearly two dozen assembled Israeli founding fathers. Rabbi Shlomo Goren stood silent at his left, holding a large clothed shattered tome. The Tome look as it was falling to pieces. On Rabbi Hedaya’s right side stood another Rabbi, huddled over due to age. The Rabbi’s face was partially obscured beneath his ceremonial cowl, his long white beard reached past another archaic tome. This tome, like its counterpart to the left of Rabbi Hedaya, was also falling to pieces. Rabbi Ovadia Hedaya began the Kabbalistic invocations of two tomes only the Twelve Isiyim have ever seen. The Chief Rabbi began the Kabbalistic invocations of the Sefer Azazel Ha’Malakh and the Sefer Raziel Ha’Malakh.

The two tomes were said to have been received by Abraham by the angels Raziel and Azazel, the patron protectors of Kabbalists and the land of Eretz ha’Yisrael. Rabbi Hedaya’s hissing invocations lasted nearly three hours in the candlelit cavernous chamber. Once the invocation completed with the final incantations to Azazel, the Isiyim departed through a large double oak door without a word. The doors remained open as three others assisted Yitzhak Shamir in lighting another seventy-two additional candles. The chamber soon cast an otherworldly glow. As the last candle was lit, seventy-two nude bodies appeared before them in procession led by Rabbi Hedaya.

The nude women were voluptuous, and curvy with bodies that seemed to be sculpted for nothing but desire. The seventy-two women appeared to be no older than twenty-one. Yitzhak Shamir knew the true ages of some of these women, having indulged with them on other occasion. He could make out over a dozen ethnicities among the young concubines – Russians with long black hair, Persian, nearly a dozen Egyptians, Spanish, a few young Germans with curly blonde flowing hair, Moroccan women who he fancied, and even a few Americans. For the next twelve hours, bodies twisted and entwined, undulating in the most depraved sexual acts their human minds imagined.

There was a merchant in Bagdad who sent his servant to market to buy provisions and in a little while the servant came back, white and trembling, and said, Master, just now when I was in the marketplace I was jostled by a woman in the crowd and when I turned I saw it was Death that jostled me. She looked at me and made a threatening gesture, now, lend me your horse, and I will ride away from this city and avoid my fate. I will go to Samarra and there Death will not find me. The merchant lent him his horse, and the servant mounted it, and he dug his spurs in its flanks and as fast as the horse could gallop he went. Then the merchant went down to the marketplace and he saw me standing in the crowd and he came to me and said, Why did you make a threating getsture to my servant when you saw him this morning? That was not a threatening gesture, I said, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Bagdad, for I had an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.

After the orgy and the Israeli founding fathers departed to announce the Israeli Declartion of Independence, Rabbi Ovadia Hedaya emerged into the chamber with another female. The woman was swathed in dark crimson and black shawls wrapping around a long gown. Although the attire covered the female’s skin entirely, her feminine form was unmistakable. Her face was partially covered by a transparent veil, nothing but white pupils where human eyes should be. The female had an inhuman stride as if walking through fire or some unseen obstacle. Rabbi Hedaya and the living shadow walked among the dead bodies lying in pools of blood. “It is done. The declaration has been made, and the war has begun.” The Rabbi said, careful not to look at the inhuman shadow. “ I hunger…” Rabbi Hedaya cringed when he heard its voice, inhuman and sibilant. “Come now dear Rabbi. I do not hunger for the flesh. It is against the laws of my race to consume the blood or flesh of a Beni ha’Adaam. I hunger for the iniquity of your mind and its unnatural desires.” The djinn cast her pale gaze upon the Rabbi.