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In general, I do like your work quite a lot. Your model is a very lovely woman, and it's an authentic type of beauty. I also like the s...



Walk on the Ocean by desert-druid
Walk on the Ocean
My wife and I were married around the end of July in my favorite city - San Diego. On that day, I was able to see an uncle who I hadn't seen in perhaps more than twenty years. I'd always been fond of him - very nice guy and fun to talk with. Anyway, this photo was taken on the wedding day. It was a small wedding followed by a late lunch or early dinner. Then my wife, my uncle, and I went to my favorite beach (Torrey Pines) with the intention of walking. Problem was, the tide was exceptionally high and there was no beach. It was one of the most beautiful things I had seen - I could see the crystal blue color of the water as the waves crested. This is how the ocean looks in my dreams - blue, dark, and stormy. 
When Andrew woke up, there was little trace of the gloom that had seemed so prevalent the previous evening. Out the window, everything seemed bright and cheery, all the desert flowers in full bloom.

By the time he came out of the bedroom, Blake had already gotten breakfast burritos. Andrew had eaten breakfast burritos before, certainly… but one of the first things he noticed simply by looking at the menu of the restaurant the night before was that what they called Mexican food back home and what they called Mexican food here were two very different things. With that fact firmly in mind, he looked at the slightly greasy to-go bag with some apprehension.

“Go ahead and eat up,” Blake said, already enjoying his burrito.

Nervously, Andrew unwrapped his own burrito and took a bite. As he chewed, he figured it might not be so terrible at first, but then the burn quickly built up, and he began to worry when it would stop building.

“Haven’t they heard of mild here?” he demanded hoarsely, reaching for his drink.

“Don’t let them hear you say that here,” Blake laughed. “They seem to think that mild means, ‘more chile, please.’”

The burrito was good, despite having chile hot enough to peel paint, and Andrew was able to finish it, if only barely.

“What kinds of things are there to do around here?” he asked.

“Well, I may have said this before, but Santa Fe’s kind of a weird town,” Blake said. “There’s not really a shortage of things to do here, but people do tend to be kind of cliquish. You have your driver’s license, right?”


“Well, I’m nervous to do this… not because I fear you being a bad driver, but because I know that most people here really are bad drivers,” Blake said. “That, and the roads here, particularly in this part of town, are pretty weird. They were made for horses and wagons more than cars, and it’s very easy to get lost on some of the narrow roads, and not be able to turn around for some time, but you can use my Ghia while you’re here.”

Andrew found himself grinning widely. Some years back, Blake had taught him how to drive a stick shift on that car. He’d always held a special fondness for it. “I’ll take good care of it,” he promised.

“Please do,” Blake said. “Anyway, going back to things to do around here. People come to this town to be artists of one kind or another, just like people go to Hollywood to be movie stars. So, plenty of art galleries around. There are always some plays or screenings of indy films. Lots of hiking too, if you get tired of the people.”

“For someone who lives in Santa Fe, you sure seem cynical about the place,” Andrew said with a laugh.

“Maybe it’s my inner hipster coming out,” Blake said. “I want to say I lived here before it was cool, but I guess it’s just my reasons for being here that aren’t as cool.”

“Just scraping by as a physicist until you can finally sell that movie script, huh?”

“Of course,” Blake said with more than a hint of irony.

“What about ghost hunting?” Andrew said after a moment’s hesitation. People generally had a dismissive attitude toward his hobby, sometimes acting as though it made him a freak. They would ask a lot of awkward questions, preach religion to him, and say that he should be into football or other, more normal things instead. He found himself scared that Blake would do the same.

Blake seemed only mildly surprised, but to his credit, didn’t preach or act weird about it. “Yeah, plenty of ghost stories around here. You’re getting into that stuff?”

“Kind of,” Andrew said with a dismissive shrug.

“Fine by me,” Blake said. “Follow Canyon Road into town a bit. Some really old buildings here. Also, check out the downtown area - the oldest house in America is somewhere in there.”

“Sounds promising,” Andrew said. “I’ll check it out after you head to work Monday.


When Monday came, it didn’t take long for Andrew to discover something that Santa Fe sorely lacked in: parking. It also didn’t take long for him to start weighing the potential benefits of homicide for whoever laid out these roads. But, the responsible parties had probably already been dead for two hundred years or more. He ended up passing over the Canyon Road area entirely in disgust, then went on to downtown.

While the downtown area surrounding the plaza was maddening in its complex maze of one way streets and blocked-off roads, it seemed almost simple in comparison. Perhaps predictably, the plaza was filled with hippie types. Some were selling sage bundles, others were playing guitars and drums. Along the sidewalks were a number of Native Americans selling their jewelry.

Then, the tourists. Andrew wasn’t quite sure how to describe some of them. Some put him in mind of kids from the fifties in bad imitations of old west clothing, playing Cowboys and Indians.

It wasn’t easy for him to find his way around, and the area was surprisingly large. He was in no particular hurry though, so he simply wandered, stopping to take photos whenever it seemed appropriate. There was a large old church that he found intriguing, and the “oldest house” had been made into a small museum with an attached curio shop. Other than that, nothing seemed especially remarkable to him as a ghost hunter. The buildings were old, but it was hard to believe it with how they had been renovated and filled with modern art, curios, and authentic souvenirs (made in China).

Andrew wasn’t sure what he was expecting, but he didn’t find it. After wandering around awhile longer, he went back to Blake’s house.


While the outside of the house was sunny, and he could hear insects and birds singing their various songs of the summer, things seemed still somehow too quiet. When he went in the house, the strange and inexplicable feeling of gloom was there. He found himself wishing that he had found something else to do downtown to kill more time until Blake got back from work, but decided that it wasn’t worth the trouble to go out again. Blake wasn’t kidding about the driving being rough.

He poured himself a glass of iced tea and plugged his camera into the computer. He idly began sorting through the photos, looking carefully at each one for something to make it stand out - an orb, a misty figure - anything. He didn’t have much luck finding anything of note, but posted his favorites on Facebook for his friends.

His e-mail inbox was fairly predictable - more propaganda letters from the two sides that his family had been split into. His mother was more overt about her intentions. “You realize that you’re making me look bad, and your father will win, right?” one went so far as to say. One from another relative accused him of having no respect for the family. He quickly began deleting e-mails, skipping reading a number of them. Why should he have respect for his family at this point? What had they done for him? They acted like having a casual, unprotected fuck was such a big deal; that the simple act of conceiving him, whether or not it was even intentional, made them somehow god-like.

Andrew did what he could to distract himself from his family and what would inevitably be waiting for him when he got back home. He suddenly realized that things would likely be even worse, because now the bulk of the anger had been shifted in his direction for embarrassing the family. He tried not to think about it, putting on music and immersing himself in social networks and forums.

As time passed, he became vaguely aware of a sense of being watched. Andrew turned off his music and looked around his bedroom. No one was there, and nothing seemed out of place. Feeling uneasy, he went back to what he was doing.

He then heard a loud thump, as though someone stomped on the floor boards behind him. He jumped as he sat in the chair, then spun around, rapidly scanning the room and the hallway beyond. Again, nothing.

Still, the feeling of being watched. “Blake, is that you?” Andrew said.


Andrew tried not to think about it, shifting his focus back to the computer. Just as he started to again become immersed, he heard another thump, even louder. This time, he felt the thump in the floor boards, and it set the picture frames to rattling.

“I’m really not in the mood for your shit!” he said in a loud voice, trying, but not quite succeeding to yell. “If I find you, I will kick your ass!”


Andrew still felt watched. He did his best to ignore it, though his nerves were now on a hair trigger. He busied himself on Facebook, doing anything he could to keep his mind occupied. He even tried a couple of the Facebook apps he’d long ago sworn off that various friends and relatives kept spamming him with.

By the time Blake got home, the sun had dipped below the horizon, and Andrew had answered through apps numerous prying questions about himself, about his thoughts about people on his friends list, and was now a fictitious mob boss. He was also fairly sure he had picked up a number of adwares on his computer that he would clean out later, wondering idly why such things weren’t illegal yet.


“I generally don’t do a lot of home cooking,” Blake explained as him and Andrew ate pizza at one of the restaurants downtown. “With the hours I work and that I am used to living alone, it just doesn’t seem practical.”

“I’m not complaining,” Andrew said.

“Did you find anything interesting today?”

“Not really,” Andrew said. “Just a bunch of signs declaring this building and that as historical places. I think even the public restrooms had historical markers. The weirdest things I could find were the tourists.”

Blake laughed. “Well, I guess the ghosts are more likely to come out when you’re not looking for them. Maybe they’re camera shy.”

“Speaking of ghosts, have you ever noticed anything weird at your place?”

Blake seemed slightly surprised. “Not really, he said. “A few creaks and groans, but that’s fairly normal in a house.”

“That was probably it, then,” Andrew said, shrugging off what had happened earlier.

“It is a pretty old place, though,” Blake said. “Parts of it are, anyway.”

“Which parts?”

“Your bedroom, the living room, and the basement pretty much were the original house,” Blake said after a moment's thought. “They’re well over a hundred years old.”

“I wonder what sorts of stuff the place has seen,” Andrew said.

“Well, in the more distant past, there was a lot of farmland in that area,” Blake said. “For the last hundred years or so, the area’s always been an art district… although my stretch of road is somewhat removed from the art district area. The picture I saw of the original house… it looked smallish and run-down - a place you drive by without a second glance, and would assume it’s abandoned. It got renovated somewhat in the sixties, then came together more in the eighties and nineties. Any particular reason you ask?”

“Heard a couple loud thumps while I was there today,” Andrew said with a shrug.

“Don’t think I’ve heard any thumps, but I guess it might be easy to forget if I had,” Blake said. “Could be an animal under the floorboards. I guess it is possible that my place is haunted, but never given much thought to it. Never saw much to make me think about it.”

When they finished eating, Blake showed Andrew some of the sights in downtown. Although Andrew had already wandered the area on his own, he enjoyed the time with Blake, and learned more of the history of the area than he had by himself. When he went to bed that night, he felt none of the gloominess of earlier. The bedroom felt peaceful; happy, even.
The Cold, ch. 2
Chapter 2 of the cold. Andrew is trying to settle in and find his way around town, while still feeling the gloom and a strong sense of being watched.
Andrew looked around the area that would be his new home for the next several months, or even years as his parents fought out their divorce. Blake, an old family friend had offered to take him in at least for the worst of it, well-aware of how ugly things had been getting. Andrew had always been fond of him - Blake had always treated him well, despite being considered strange by some.

He never liked how that word was used with regards to Blake, as well as various others. It always was in the tone of a thinly-veiled insult. Always whispered in conspiratorial tones. What it really meant was “different,” but Andrew had noticed that among his elders, different was never considered to be a good thing.

His new home was to be a small city in northern New Mexico called Santa Fe. Blake lived on the outskirts in what appeared to be an older part of town. Blake’s house was an unusual mixture of rustic and luxurious - definitely older, but spacious and comfortable, and to Andrew’s relief, quiet.

Although the front yard was in full bloom with a burst of color, things still seemed somehow gloomy. A gloom that was only slightly marred when Blake turned the lights on as they came into the house.

Blake showed Andrew in to what would become his bedroom - a reasonably large room with a broad window looking out front over the garden. Still feeling the peculiar gloom, Andrew tried to think of how bright and cheery it must look in the daytime.

“Go ahead and set your things down, and I’ll take you out for dinner,” Blake said.

“Sure thing,” Andrew said, feeling watched through the large window.


“Thanks again for taking me in,” Andrew said as he stared at the menu.

“No problem,” Blake said. “I know things are ugly right now with your parents, and that they were doing their best to drag you into the middle of it. Anyway, it’ll be nice to have some company in that big house.”

Andrew stared awkwardly at the menu. “What’s menudo?”

Blake grinned. “Stew made with beef intestine. Some people swear by it… I’ve personally never had the, ahem, stomach to try it.”

“So that’s what they do with all that stuff,” Andrew said with a shudder as he remembered looking at things such like beef kidneys, sweetbreads, and tripe with morbid curiosity in the supermarket. “What’s lengua?”

“Cow tongue,” Blake answered.

“Umm… are these burgers made with anything weird?”

“This is Santa Fe,” Blake said with a shrug. “Everything’s weird.

“You aren’t helping,” Andrew pointed out.

“The burgers are fine,” Blake assured him with a grin. “No especially weird ingredients.”

The burger Andrew got was good, but it was much spicier than he had anticipated. Apparently, people here felt a pressing need to coat everything in chile - even the simple, humble hamburger that looked for all the world as though it were perfectly innocent, despite having a thick coating of red chile powder. Blake on the other hand seemed perfectly content eating what appeared to be a pile of little more than green chile and melted cheese.


When they got back home, they settled into chairs in the living room. There was a large television set, but it seemed to be the only thing in the room that had acquired a layer of dust.

“Do you want to talk about it?” Blake asked.

Andrew knew that Blake referred to the his parents’ divorce, and tried to fight away the knots in his stomach the subject brought. “I’m really not sure what there is to talk about,” he said.

“When we’re young, we tend to believe that our parents know everything, that they are the pinnacle of achievement, and that they have infinite wisdom,” Blake said. “Then we get older, and realize that’s simply what they want us to believe about them… and in some cases, questioning that belief… well, it can get ugly.”

Andrew nodded, feeling the deep disappointment he had in his parents.

“’Mother is the name for God on the lips and hearts of children,’” Blake quoted.

“Why the hell did they have to drag me into this?” Andrew suddenly demanded as he blinked back hot tears.

“That’s where we realize that our parents can be at least as childish as us,” Blake said.

“Been there myself.”

“They’re using me as their own fuckin' misguided missile!”

Blake chuckled slightly. “Well, at least we were able to get you over here for awhile. I’ll tell you, that was no easy task.”

“Yeah, thanks,” Andrew said. “I mean that. I just get so sick of their constant fighting. They’re both telling me things I never wanted to hear about the other. My dad is apparently all-consumed by his sexual appetites, and my mom is apparently a slobbering, stupid, drunken party-girl bimbo.”

“Well, there might be some truth to both assertions, or there might not be,” Blake said. “You’ll just have to judge for yourself when you’re able to, if you’re inclined to.” Then Blake made a face. “Come to think of it though, you might prefer not to have either set of accusations confirmed. It’s rather more than anyone wants to know about their parents.”


Andrew settled into his bed, the lights off with some light coming in from the lamp in the front yard. Blake usually kept it on for security, but had offered to turn it off in case it bothered Andrew. Andrew thanked him but declined. There was just something about this room that made him want to keep some light in it, as much as it pained him to admit it to himself. He didn’t want to think of himself as still being afraid of the dark. That was kid stuff.

Blake was right. It was no easy task to get his parents to agree to let him stay here during their divorce. Andrew wasn’t sure what Blake may have said or done, but for his own part, he did his very best to make his parents see how selfish they were both being.

They both said they wanted what was best for him, but he felt as though he were no more than a trophy to them. Thus, they fought, simply out of hate for each other… but, they didn’t want to admit even to themselves that was in fact the reason for it. So, they used him to justify it. When they were feeling belligerent, they would say they were fighting for his well-being. When they were upset, they would say he was the cause of the divorce. He felt as though he were an old, fraying rope in a game of tug-of-war.

The attorneys were no better. They would take him into their office, and speak to him through words and mannerisms as though they were his longtime friends, proceeding to patronize him. Then their letters would always say, “…in the child’s best interest.” How he came to hate those words!

For one thing, Andrew didn’t like being called a child. He was sixteen now. He was only two years away from being legally able to tell both his parents to fuck off as he walks away. Right now though, the thought of that two years felt like an eternity.

For another thing, the attorneys never asked him what he wanted, or what he thought was in his own best interest. Instead, they would tell him what he wanted, only occasionally bothering to leave room for him to voice agreement, but never disagreement. Just like his parents. Of course, it was painfully obvious to Andrew that for the attorneys, it was all about money, and Andrew wasn’t the paying client… and it was in the “best interest” of the attorneys to drag this out as long as they could, and his parents were more than happy to oblige them in that.

As things were, he would remain in Santa Fe with Blake at least for the summer. Andrew’s anxieties were constantly reminding him that summer really wasn’t that long a time. He found himself hoping that he could stay longer. That maybe he could even finish high school as he lived with Blake instead of either of his parents.
The Cold, ch. 1
I started writing this one some years ago shortly after I moved in with who is now my wife, who lived in Santa Fe at the time. I often like to drive around aimlessly at night, deliberately getting lost, and Santa Fe is a great place to do that. If you believe in ghosts (I more or less do), Santa Fe becomes that much more interesting - it has a feeling of spiritual energy all around it. As I drove, I would think about the stories I was working on, or sometimes came up with new ones. When I came up with this, I was in a brooding sort of mood, and my surroundings at the moment fit the mood very well.

Today, my wife and I made a day trip up to Santa Fe, and I got to thinking about this story again, and what brought it on. I re-read what little I had as I re-typed it into Scrivener from the old OpenOffice document... and figured I really needed to brush the dust off it and work on it more.

It is, overall, a depressing sort of ghost story... but, I hope, a very good one.
I’d fallen asleep on a couch in my office, and was awoken, rudely, by Carmen as she loudly opened the blinds. She was a deceptively pretty little brunette thing, and she used it like a weapon. She was smart - cunning, even. She was in an official sense my secretary, but in reality was more like a private partner to me. I keep thinking that I ought to tell her so, but that would mean giving her a raise.

“Up late with Jack and Jim again?” she said, holding up an empty whiskey bottle.

“Sure,” I said. “Let’s go with your version of events. Probably more interesting, anyway.”

“Speaking of interesting, I think we can close the Miller case,” she said.


“He tried to drug me,” Carmen said casually. She wasn’t one to get her feathers ruffled easily. Her husband had attempted to strangle her to death in her sleep, and now sat in prison. I think part of why she’s so gutsy is that she’s convinced he’ll kill her when they inevitably release him. It’s not something she talks about - I wouldn’t even know if she hadn’t been my client at the time.

“Oh, and another death threat,” she said. “This one from Mr. Moore, by the looks of it. Would you like me to put it with the others?”

“Yeah,” I said. That one was getting to be a real thorn in my side.

“What’s on the agenda today?” Carmen asked.

“I don’t know… what time is it?”

“Lunch time,” she said pointedly.

“Huh,” I said, getting up. “No appointments?”

She shook her head.

“There’s some people I think I’ll check up on,” I said then.


I got off the streetcar and walked a few blocks to the apartment building from the previous night. The daylight didn’t make things look any better. If anything, it gave the impression of a sleeping monster. That wasn’t all, though.

There was a crowd of on-lookers, eager to see the suffering of their fellow people. A cop stood somewhat off to the side, violently retching. The medics carried a shrouded body out on a stretcher.

Standing quietly by was the woman who had begged me the previous night to help. She cast an accusing glance in my direction. At least it felt accusing… it may have been my sense of guilt in the matter, but what the hell was I supposed to do? I wonder if she actually even recognized me.

I felt numb. I didn’t know what to say or do, or even if I actually could have helped. All I knew was that they had asked, no… begged my help, and I walked away. Now their kid was dead.

I almost didn’t notice the man watching me with a grin.

He was well dressed, if perhaps a little old-fashioned. He was neither especially tall nor short. His hair was neatly combed to one side, and he was clean-shaven. Indeed, nothing in particular stood out about him other than the fact that he apparently found something terribly amusing about all this.

I began to approach him, never losing eye contact. As the crowd of on-lookers got thicker, I lost sight of him for no more than a split second. He was gone.

“Damn!” I spat. I scanned the area carefully for signs of him. My eyes caught sudden movement in an alleyway. “Gotcha,” I muttered. With a hand on the butt of my pistol, I slunk into the alley.

When I was hit, it came without warning. My head was slammed on the wall, the wrist of my pistol arm caught in a steely grasp. I struggled to refocus my eyes as my gun was pried from my hand. I recognized Detective Samuels from the police, along with two of his thugs who now held me against the wall.

“Well, well, Conrad,” he said. “Returning to the scene of the crime, are you?”

“I didn’t do anything,” I said.

“Really?” he said. “Because several witnesses have attested that you were here last night. That you were among the last to see the victim alive.”

“I was visiting as a favor for a friend,” I said.

“Tuh!” Samuels laughed shortly. “You don’t have friends, Conrad. This is a criminal investigation for the actual police. Go back to following guys that can’t keep it in their pants.”

“Well, maybe if you all were doing your damned job, they’d stop calling for me,” I said. I was punched hard in the stomach almost before I had finished saying it.

“I could make you disappear,” he said. “I’ve done it before. No one would miss you.” He then ejected the cylinder from my revolver and emptied the bullets, then dropped it on the ground.

“Stay off my turf, Andrews,” he ordered, then his thugs threw me to the ground.

“Who’s the laughing boy?” I called after him.


“The guy I followed into this alley,” I said. “Who is he?”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said, then disappeared into the crowd of on-lookers.


It was dusk by the time I got back to the office, and Carmen was antsy.

“Where have you been?” she demanded.

“Basking in the glory that belongs only to private dicks,” I said.

“Oh, my,” she said, apparently noticing something. “Someone got to you, didn’t they?”

“Just our friendly neighborhood cops,” I said.

“You’re going to get yourself shot one of these days,” she said.

“I’ll drink to that,” I said, pouring some scotch.

“Don’t get too comfortable,” Carmen said. “You have a client.”

“Say what?”

Faye was sitting in my office. Her eyes were as hard as little green agates. She wore a smile when she saw me, but there was no warmth to this smile. She slammed an envelope down on my desk full of cash.

“I believe that should more or less cover expenses, Mister Andrews,” she said.

“Expenses?” I said. “For what?”

“For what you refused to do for that little girl and her mother last night,” she said. Along with her cold smile, there were tears in her eyes. “Her name was Maggie MacDonald. She’s dead now.”

“I figured out that last part for myself,” I said. “What am I supposed to do about it now?”

Faye shook her head. “I used to think I was in love with you, Conrad. Now you’re just a coward who drinks too much!”

“Again, what the hell am I supposed to do about it?” I demanded.

“It’s not over,” Faye said. “Not even close. I want you to stop this before the same things happen to others that happened to Maggie… and me.” She stared at me for a moment before rushing out of my office, slamming the door hard enough to shake a picture frame off the wall, breaking its glass.

I went to pick it up. Perhaps in one of the universe’s biggest cliches, it was an old picture of me with Tim - Faye’s brother.

“What was that all about?” Carmen asked.

“Superstitious nonsense,” I said.

“If someone’s dead, it sounds like a bit more than superstitious nonsense to me,” she said.

I looked at her for a moment. “Go on home, Carmen. You’ve already done more than enough for one day.”

She lingered a moment, eyeing me critically. “Try not to drink yourself to death,” she said, turning on her heel. She didn’t quite slam the door on her way out, but almost.

I picked up the envelope Faye had left. At a glance, I knew that it was a lot of money - more than I had ever accepted for a case. I didn’t want to take it. I never wanted to take anything like this from Faye… it was a slap to the face, and she knew it. With Tim gone, she had become something like a little sister to me. This money spoke louder than words her rejection of that.

I would take the case. I had no damned idea of where to begin, but I would take the case. Faye was the one person I could not say no to, especially like this. I would follow it until the end… either of the case, or myself.
The Black Dog (ch. 2)
The next chapter of a work in progress, the Black Dog. My attempt at a gritty, noir detective story with strong supernatural elements. If you haven't yet, find and read the first chapter in my gallery before reading this.
So... lately, I've not been very active on DeviantArt. I think part of it is just a generalized sense of frustration... partly with trying to get my work noticed, and perhaps mostly with things outside the realm of my art.

My time as of late has mostly been consumed with work, with reading, and with helping my girlfriend in editing her novels. My own creative work has been at something of a hiatus - I'll briefly feel strong inspiration to work on my writing, then when I pull up a work in progress or try to start a new project on this flash of inspiration, it seems to slip through my fingers.

In reading, I've lately come to have an obsession with classic horror and occult stories. Currently, I'm reading Doctor Faustus by Thomas Mann, with Shirley Jackson's Haunting of Hill House next on my list. Doctor Faustus has been an interesting, if slow, read. The main character, a composer, seems to struggle with inspiration, feeling as though it's all been done before. It seems even his best works have a sense of mocking parody to them. He can't seem to find any actual satisfaction. Although he is generally regarded as beyond genius and may even seem egotistical to those around him, he actually does have a strange and profound sense of modesty about his own work.

That aside, I've had a question on my mind the past several days. In my own life, the parts of my life I draw the most inspiration from also tend to be the parts that are the most painful. Indeed, they are wounds that never quite seem to scab over. In a paradoxical way, these parts I draw inspiration from... well, the pain from them is what often hinders me as well as inspires me. Perhaps this is why I start on writing what I feel has potential to really be a great novel (a few of them, in fact), but never seem to be able to finish them? Perhaps, more simply, it's just remnants of the crippling depression I suffered in my younger days. While I do know that I am very intelligent, I was, at best, a mediocre student in middle and high school. I would essentially be failing any given class for most of the semester for lack of will and effort, then when it was time for finals, I would ace them to bring my grade up to passing, if sometimes only barely.

Truth be told, I was often suicidal during that time. I would, of course, be accused of faking it to get attention... but no, I don't feel I was faking any of it. I still remember rather vividly a time that I sat in the remnants of a broken mirror, slashing my hands and arms with the shards as my mother yelled at me from the other side of the door, making various insults and threats... among which was a threat to call the police on me, which for whatever reason she chose not to do when I was actually even yelling at her to do so. There was also a time, years later while I was in my early-to-mid twenties, where I finally chose to confront her as an adult for her abuse and for how she had turned the family against me. I ended up jumping out of a moving car to get away from her then, again finding myself suicidal.

People are more than the sum of their experiences, I believe. Certainly, experience is part of it, but we choose how to respond... else, I may have become yet another homicidal maniac shooting up my high school as a result of my experiences. But, the question that's been on my mind for the past several days is what I might be like if my life had not been the hell that it was. Would I be at all inclined toward being an artist beyond the superficial dream of simply being a rock star, having no inspiration other than just the thought of being a rock star? Would I be one of the superficial jerks that I currently loathe? I know that I am moderately outspoken... and of course, that would have the potential to make me even more insufferable. I don't mind that some see me as an insufferable jerk now - people who make snap judgements without even trying to know where it is I come from. Those people, I don't care about. But how might I have been toward those who have gone through the sort of stuff that I have in this life, had my life turned out different? Was it somehow necessary that my life be as hard as it was for me to be a tolerable person as opposed to one of those that makes knee-jerk judgements about myself and those like me? And if so, knowing that, would I have chosen any different?


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Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
United States
So... the name's Randall. I dabble in various types of art, but mostly consider myself a writer. My favorite genres tend to be fantasy, urban fantasy, sci-fi, and horror. On horror, I prefer the supernatural type. Slashers tend to be too predictable (unless we're talking about Hannibal Lecter), and most could be easily outran by someone who can go for more than a few steps without tripping, or simply handled by someone who is a reasonably good shot.

As far as paying the bills, I'm a pharmacy technician with hopes of going to college soon for a biology degree. Not to say I don't hope to be able to pay bills (and more) with my writing eventually - I most certainly do! Epidemiology (study of disease outbreaks) has always been a passion for me, as has medical research. I am quite devoutly pro-science, but I like to believe that there is also some magic in the world. I do still follow a sort of religion - I consider myself Celtic pagan, but rather than trying to make science fit religion, I rather prefer it the other way around.

If I favorited your work, put simply, it means I liked it - there was something about it that intrigued me. You can thank me if you like - I certainly don't mind it. But, I'll say that the best way to thank me would be to take a look at my gallery, especially at my writing, and let me know what you think. While I do get a number of views, I get very little in the way of feedback... and honestly, it makes me a little nervous that it's because no one has anything nice to say about it :)

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Cavenecadas73 Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2015
Rotten-Alice Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2015
Than you for the favourites!
Delta-13 Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you so much for the fave!
Eqonosp Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks for the fave on 156.
Rotten-Alice Featured By Owner May 10, 2015
Thank you for the favourite!
visionart Featured By Owner May 4, 2015   Digital Artist
Happy Birthday :party:
Have A Great Day..Enjoy!
lovelorey Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks for the fave, love :tehe: 
TimtehGrey Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2014  Student Writer
Thanks for the fav.
demonrobber Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2014
Thanks for the fav! It is much appreciated. Greetings to the United States!
desert-druid Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
No prob; nice idea on putting it side-by-side with the art that inspired it. Good poem!
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