Making Gods, page 1
A collection of short stories by
Copyright 2015 Anthony Cooper
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/.
Table of Contents
Powerless – Prologue
Powerless – Chapter 1
Powerless – Chapter 2
Lord of Shadow
The Colours of Jupiter
About the author
“…and when I look back I realise the team broke up because we experienced a shared nightmare. We did the most horrible, unimaginable things and we all knew what we had done. We couldn’t bear to look at each other. When we did, we saw our own terrors reflected back in our eyes. None of us could judge each other, none of us could help each other.
Since then we have all scattered to the winds and tried in our own ways to either regain what we lost or to hide from our own dark thoughts. Have we succeeded? Are we happy? Are we fulfilled? I say no. We are lost, stuck in the past forever. The truth is he won. He beat us all. And nearly twenty years on we are still paying for what he did.
And are we still the heroes of 'The Pulse'? Will you still idolise us after reading my words? Can you forgive us by remembering only the good things we did, the people we saved, the city we saved? Or are our heroic deeds forever tainted by my admissions?
Would it help at all if I admit that I am going to die? Right now? In fact… I think he's in the kitchen. He just bumped into a chair, trying not to make a noise in the dark.
Don't even contemplate thinking of me as some kind of martyr though. I am as weak and as powerless as we all were. I only hope that what I have written here will somehow end the torment, free us of our demons at last, even if it is the death of me.
He’s in the hall.
Even through the medication I can hear his mind screaming my name.
The bars of orange street lighting slicing through the half-closed blinds shrink and split as a large figure silently settles between them and Vincent. As the silhouette stands there breathing loudly, he pops another sleeping pill and washes it down with half a glass of whiskey.
"Not... trying to kill myself you know." he says aloud, "Doesn't affect me like everyone else, it just helps block out the voices."
He studies the broken light refracting in the glass.
"Not that there are many voices out here anyway. Apart from yours, bellowing in my head." He carefully places the glass on a worn green coaster on the table next to his chair.
There is silence.
"It's finished you know. And I'm not telling you where it is."
There is more silence.
"Surprised? Thought I'd be cowering by now? Thought I'd still be the weak-willed, whimpering Vincent you could intimidate by just being there?"
The figure seems to shift slightly.
"Well sod you. I've had a long time to think about everything that happened. I knew this was coming. Someday. And I'm not cowering, not for you."
The silhouette grows larger. The bands of light behind it are almost completely obscured. Vincent's breathing quickens and his neck starts to pulsate. His hands bounce up and down involuntarily on the armrests.
"I love this chair..." he says rather too loudly, "had it since I left the unit and got this place. Just seems to get more comfortable by the... aww, no." The air starts to smell of heat, as it shifts and begins to glow. "That's it eh? Not even a word for old Vincent? Nothing?" Then the glow. Then the heat. All the beams of window light are blocked out now. Vincent is panting. He starts beating his fists on the chair.
"It's all in there you bastard! All of it! Everything you want to hide, and you're never going to find it. Martin will make sure of that. Martin will make sure you never even touch it! It's gonna get out there, on the bookshelves, on the Internet, wherever, and you're gonna learn you can’t hide from yourself!"
He smells his hair singeing as his eyes dry up.
The blue burst of energy rips him open from neck to pelvis, spreading darkening organs and an arm flying outward like grotesque, unfurling wings. His head, loose, drops over the back of the chair and hangs there. A small black patch of material falls from the rear of the chair, grey curls of smoke rising from the hole it reveals.
The figure steps back and beams of light cut their way across the remains. A carcass. Hollowed out and empty. No more voices for Vincent.
Then it begins searching.