Cthulhu whose name strikes fear,
Speaks to those whose souls can hear.
Late at night an artist dreams,
Wakes up with an awful scream.
Then in clay his visions mould,
Pretty ‘outré’ so I’m told.
Visions of a scene from hell,
Near impossible to sell.
Hark! The nameless cultists sing,
Glory to our dreaming king.
Lyrics; J Westbrooks.
Tune; ‘Hark The Herald Angels Sing’.
“What’s goin’ on?” Demanded Billy-Bob, all the time thinking that they really ought to buy another set of binoculars.
The two brothers sat side by side on a tree branch overlooking the cabin that had been rented by the girl’s school. The two girls had come into the back bedroom some time ago and switched on the lights but had not shut the curtains. Now it was dark the two boys had an unobstructed view, from where they sat they could see most of the room and all of the bed.
“They’re still kissin’.” Said Cletus, he passed the binoculars to his little brother.
Billy-Bob took them eagerly, “Yeah,” He sniggered, “They’re sure getting into it.”
It had certainly been worth all the effort they had put into moving the furniture around to give them a better view.
“What they doin’ now.” Asked Cletus.
“They’re kissin’ real passionate like,” Announced Billy-Bob gleefully, “An’ the blonde ones pullin’ off the dark ones shirt! Hey! She ain’t wearing no bra neither!”
“Let me see!” Insisted Cletus, for a moment the boys fought over the binoculars.
“Hey yeah!” Exclaimed Cletus as Billy-Bob rubbed the spot where his brother had punched him. “Now the blonde’s got her top off and she’s undoin’ her bra…now they’re kissin’ again.”
“Hey, my turn now.” Whined Billy-Bob; reluctantly his brother handed over the binoculars.
Billy-Bob sat with the binoculars glued to his eyes as the two girls struggled out of their jeans and panties.
“The blondes a natural.” Commented Billy-Bob, his brother said nothing. “Oh shoot! They’re goin’ into the shower,” He complained, “We really need to get those web-cams installed.”
Again Cletus said nothing, Billy-Bob let the binoculars hang from his neck and looked around, his brother had vanished.
“Hey! Cletus!” Billy-Bob called quietly, he looked to left and right, up and down, his brother was nowhere to be seen. “Stop foolin’ ‘round.” He called again.
Billy-Bob sat on the branch and wondered where his brother could have got to, he had not heard him move, he could not be too far away…could he? Billy-Bob started to feel worried. Just as he was thinking of climbing down from the tree something grabbed him by his ankle and pulled…hard!
Tina heard the knock on the bedroom door and stepped out of the shower she was sharing with Alice. She wrapped a towel around herself and went to open the door. Looking out into the corridor she saw Tammy and smiled.
“You can shut your curtains now,” Announced Tammy, “They won’t be doing that again!”
“Thanks Tam.” Replied Tina as she shut the door and padded over to the window and closed the curtains. Letting her towel fall to the floor she made her way back to the bathroom.
“Now where were we?” She asked as she got back in with Alice.
“What was that?” Whispered Willow as she appeared from under the covers.
“What?” Gasped Kennedy panting with excitement.
“Like two splashes.” Willow looked round the darkened room.
“Look,” Said Kennedy impatiently, “If it’s something important I’m sure the girls will tell us. If not, it can wait until morning…Now get back to work!”
“Sure?” Asked Willow innocently.
“YES!” Screamed Kennedy in frustration.
“Well you only had to say.” Willow giggled as she vanished down the bed.
“AAAAAAGH!” Screamed Anthony Hart as he woke up covered in sweat, his sheets screwed up in a ball on the floor.
Tony rolled over on his bed and squinted at his watch, it was half past two; he lay back on his damp pillow and sighed. This was the fifth night he had been woken by the nightmares. The dreams were so vivid, and so terrible. He would find himself transported to some ancient dark city populated by strange terrifying creatures that moved in some timeless insane dance.
The only humans he saw were the victims of unspeakable experiments and dreadful inhuman torments to which, he felt sure, not even death would bring any respite. Then above it all stood some huge hideous creature that revelled in the agony of others.
As he had done on the previous nights Tony wearily got out of bed and splashed some cold water on his face before pulling on his jeans and a T-shirt. Slowly he walked into his workshop, where he switched on the light and pulled the damp sheet from the clay sculpture he was working on. For a moment he gazed fascinated at the inhuman figure that stood before him. Then, almost unwillingly, he let his hands mould the clay into the shape of the monster from his dreams.
Breakfast the following morning was a chaotic affair; Willow promised herself that she would write a proper rota so the girls knew who’s turn it was to do what. First down after Willow was Shannon and Sally dressed in stout boots and hiking clothes. They said they were going to go deep into the woods in search of bears.
Next Kennedy waddled in followed closely by Tammy dressed in her normal clothing. She claimed that she was going to spend the day riding her bike around the lake. Willow gave Kennedy a knowing look. Tammy was still trying to deal with her feelings of betrayal after her doomed love affair with ‘Alfred the Demon Butler’.
Finally, and to the sound of catcalls and wolf whistles, Tina and Alice made their grand entrance dressed in matching floral pattern bikinis and sandals. They had plans to take the small boat, which came with the house, out to a small island in the centre of the lake and have a picnic.
As breakfast broke up Kennedy called to the Slayers to pay attention.
“Listen up guys,” She called, the girls all turned to look at her, “Remember that life is a bitch and if a Slayer is enjoying herself something nasty normally happens to spoil it all.”
All the girls laughed.
“Seriously guys,” Continued Kennedy losing the smile from her face, “Be careful, be armed and be home by six okay?”
All the young Slayers nodded and promised to be miserable whenever possible.
“And before you go,” Said Willow reaching into a bag she had brought down to the kitchen earlier, “Everyone take one of these.”
She placed five mug sized plastic squeezie bottles on the breakfast table. Obediently each girl picked up a bottle and looked at it suspiciously and at the milky liquid within. Finally Alice asked.
“What is it?”
“Combined Sun Block and Bug Repellent,” Announced Willow proudly, “If it wasn’t for the magical element I could make a small fortune with this stuff.”
Slowly the girls left the house calling to each other not to have too much fun. Finally only Willow, Kennedy and Tara were left in the house.
“So what are we going to do?” Asked Kennedy as Willow compulsively started to tidy up the kitchen.
“I thought we’d go down to Amanda Park,” Replied Willow, “I’ve heard tell there’s a antiques shop there that sometimes has some occult stuff in stock.”
“Okay,” Agreed Kennedy, “That should take the morning…so what do we do with the rest of the day?”
“I’m sure we will be able to think of something.” Said Willow innocently.
“I’m sure we will.” Agreed Kennedy grinning broadly.
Cletus and Billy-Bob watched from the bushes as the girls left the house. After their adventures of the previous night they had decided to bring forward the instillation of the web-cams. Neither youth wanted a repeat of being thrown into the lake, plus having to explain to their mother how they had come to ‘fall’ in the water in the first place was no picnic. She always seemed to know when they were lying.
Neither boy could understand how they could have missed a guy at the house. Obviously none of the girls or their teachers was capable of throwing them both into the lake, but it had happened so the answer was plain. There must be someone else staying at the house.
They watched as first the little red head and her taller friend walked up the track towards the main road and away from the lake. Both girls carried packs and looked as if they were planning on being away all day. Next the two lesbian girls left, they headed for the jetty. Billy-Bob was all for following the two bikini clad girls in their own boat, but he was persuaded otherwise by his brother.
Cletus won the dispute by using a reasoned argument and his ability to hit harder than his younger brother. Lastly the biker chick appeared and put on her leather jacket and helmet. She mounted her bike and roared off along the track and turned right towards the Ranger Station at the end of North Shore Road. That just let the two teachers and the kid, the Van Damme boys lay and waited, they could wait all day if need be.
It was mid morning before Tina and Alice started to get bored with just lying on the small beach. Fish Island, as it was called, with stunning originality, due to its fish like shape, was situated towards the south shore of Quinault Lake. It was about two-hundred and fifty yards long with a couple of sandy beaches on an otherwise rocky shore. The centre of the island was covered in pine trees.
It had taken ten or so minutes to get across the lake, then another five as they looked for the best place to land. They chose the small sandy beach on the south side of the island and dragged the boat ashore. They set up a little camp with a couple of blankets and the picnic basket and, of course, their weapons bag. Next they had had a lot of fun rubbing Miss Willow’s Sun and Insect Block all over each others bodies. Both girls admitted afterwards that applying sun block had never been so…stimulating.
As the morning passed the two girls lay side by side sunning themselves on one of the blankets.
“Aly,” Said Tina, “Get the weapons bag I’ve got something to show you.”
“You get it.” Replied Alice, “I’m too comfy to move.”
“Look if you don’t move I can’t move.” Reasoned Tina, Alice having wrapped herself ‘round her girlfriend, “Come on…it’s a present.”
“For me?” Asked Alice sitting up, “You’re not just saying that to make me move.”
“No!” Laughed Tina, she pointed at the bag, “Fetch!” She ordered.
“Yeth Mithtrith.” Lisped Alice as she crawled across the sand and retrieved the bag.
Alice dropped the bag next to Tina as the older girl sat up; she opened the bag and brought forth a wooden box about thirty inches long and a couple of inches deep, it had a bright red bow at one end of the lacquered box. Solemnly she handed it over to Alice.
“I couldn’t have any girlfriend of mine,” Explained Tina, “Going around with some old tatty short sword…so I got you this.”
“What is it?” Asked Alice weighing the box in her hand, a look of shear delight on her face.
“You could open it and find out.” Grinned Tina.
Alice opened the box with trembling fingers.
“Do you like it?” Asked Tina, “It’s you very own Wakizashi…be careful its razor sharp!”
Alice gazed at the weapon in awe; she fingered the engraving on the blade and caressed the shark skin hilt. She tried it out with a few practise cuts through the air and found the sword to be perfectly balanced.
“It’s beautiful, how will I ever repay you?” She asked breathlessly.
“Oh I’ll think of something,” Replied Tina lying back down, “For now you can be my devoted slave.”
“Willingly.” Replied Alice putting her new sword back in its box and crawling over to Tina.
The girls kissed.
“How may I serve you mistress?” Asked Alice pulling off her bikini top.
There was no Antiques Store in Amanda Park; there was however a rather intriguing local arts and crafts store. Willow had started to babble almost as soon as she had seen the examples of Amerindian art. Kennedy had long experience of being able to ‘tune out’ Willow’s overexcited babblings while still being able to pick out words and phrases like; ‘monster’ and ‘immanent death’.
While Willow waxed lyrical about native beadwork and how badly the Native Americans had been treated over the years, Kennedy had walked around the store examining the goods it had to offer. One of the few good things she had picked up from her step-mother was the ability to pick out a fake. There were some nice pieces on display, most of them genuine, not that she counted herself as an expert. As she looked along the lines of shelves she came to a section that appeared to be reserved for original sculptures.
One piece in particular caught her eye. It was a bronze statuette about eighteen inches tall. It reminded her very much of one of those Hindu elephant gods. But this example was odd somehow; it seemed to draw her eye back to it whenever she tried to look away.
Instead of having a trunk the figure had a mass of tentacles, it had clawed hands and feet and most unusual of all, great bat-like wings. Kennedy found herself reaching out to touch the figurine, it was like her will was not her own, her fingers touched the cold bronze and...
“Baby are you all right?”
Kennedy turned to see Willow’s concerned face. She looked down to see Tara pulling on the hem of her dress and looking up at her with worried green eyes.
“What?” Mumbled Ken, “How?”
She looked around to see the faces of several customers looking her way and the store owner frowning at her.
“You cried out.” Explained Willow.
“Would you like to sit down?” Asked the storeowner, a middle-aged woman in a peasant style dress, and lots of beads. She helped Willow lead Kennedy over to a chair by the shop counter. Once they had her sitting down she bustled off to return a few moments later with a glass of water.
“There you are,” She soothed, “Drink this; you’ll be alright in a minute.”
“Was it the baby?” Asked Willow with just a hint of panic, “Shall I call a doctor?”
“No,” Replied Kennedy, “No, I’m fine now.”
“What happened?” Asked Willow crouching down in front of Kennedy and taking her hands in hers.
“I was looking at that Elephant god thing,” Kennedy explained, “And suddenly I…”
“That damn thing again?” Said the store owner sharply, “I’m going to get rid of it…send it back to Tony so he can melt it down again or something.”
Willow stood up and looked at the woman.
“Has this sort of thing happened before?” She asked.
“Well,” Admitted the store keeper reluctantly, “Not like this but several people have complained about feeling…odd when they’re near it an’ when I’ve been alone in the store late at night I’m…” The woman seemed disinclined to carry on speaking.
Willow raised a quizzical eyebrow.
“Well,” Said the woman embarrassed by what she was going to say, “Sometimes I think I can hear weird chanting and music.”
“Who’s this ‘Tony’?” Asked Kennedy.
“Local artist,” Replied the woman, “Tony Hart, he lives on the lake shore on Lake View Drive. Ask anybody up there and they’ll point you in the right direction.”
The store owner fussed over Kennedy until Willow said that they were going back to their cabin. As they drove away Willow looked over at Kennedy who sat next to her cuddling Tara, she frowned.
“Darn ‘curse of the Scooby’s.” She muttered.
“An’ I was enjoying myself too.” Agreed Kennedy.
“We’ll have to investigate.” Announced Willow resignedly.
“I wonder if the girls have found anything?” Kennedy sighed.
Playing topless hide and seek had its draw backs thought Alice. Indeed playing any sort of game on an island covered in pine trees while dressed only in a bikini was probably a bad idea. However as a method of honing your stalking skills it was great fun! She carefully pushed herself between the branches of two trees and found herself in a clearing.
“Crap!” She muttered as she stood and looked around.
Alice took in the packed earth of the clearing’s floor, the primitive log altar festooned with feathers, antlers and human skulls.
“Double crap.” She hissed and filled her lungs with air, “TEEEEEN!” She yelled at the top of her voice, “You better come…found something bad!”
A few moments later Tina burst into the clearing, she stood facing Alice taking in the details of the scene. Alice’s eye flicked over to her girlfriend and noticed the scar on Tina’s chest just under her right breast. Normally Tina covered the wound, the result of having been shot nearly two years before, with a ‘Glamour’ that Miss Willow had taught her. As she had walked into the clearing the Glamour had faded to reveal the old injury.
“Triple crap!” Exclaimed Alice, she pointed and Tina looked down at herself.
“Darn,” Sighed Tina, “Real magic…we musta been having too much fun.”