Crushed

I have to say it’s disheartening to see what I’ve seen.  People whose work I find fascinating being pushed off their publication platforms because either they themselves or their content is deemed “dangerous,” for being little more than counter-culture all the while the real animals at ISIS are given free leave to publish beheadings on Youtube.  I honestly don’t know what their endgame is.  You can’t unring the bell.  People have already seen the wondrous potential the internet has to offer, and most of them aren’t going to be willing to go back to network television.  By going after new content creators, by going after their money–how do I put it?  It’s like pouring concrete in the swimming pool to keep the darker races from socially mixing with whites.  Now no-one gets to swim.  Perhaps people think there’s some wisdom in spite.  I don’t think most people think this way, however; it’s the archaic profit apparatus of the legacy media and the ancient wrinkled mummies that own them.  They want the world remade in their own image; they don’t want a future owned by those that will actually live in it.

George Soros can go eat a bag of fucking dicks.  Asshole never saw a gold filling that he didn’t like–if you understand what I’m saying.

Of course, this has already happened to me.  The marketing model I was using, and quite successfully, was ripped out beneath my feet, but it doesn’t feel better but worse to see it happening all around.

I would say that it’s important to remain positive, but that isn’t truly correct.  It’s important to remain determined.  Not your pity but your courage has so far saved the unfortunate.

We are winning, and we will continue to win, but only if we remain determined.  As it is, many will lose heart with the continuous strokes of miserable fate, but we have to remember that we represent the new media, a new model of doing things, something infinitely more efficient than what the opposition could ever hope to offer.  In the free marketplace of ideas, among other things, we hold the winning hand.  It’s just the losers that are so good at bluffing.

The Recovered Logs of Midshipman Gregory Samuels Part 11

Midshipman’s Log Part 101

Gregory Samuels

October 17, 1252 CNS

I just wish that something would happen.  After all that madness just a few days ago—I admit I haven’t slept much in the mean-time—to just fall into this steady pace of zero progress.  I think I’ve begun to miss the noise; all that’s left me is the dull rumbling of the lonely engines and the occasional hissing switch of the hydraulics to keep you on your feet.  But there’s nothing else—no whisper of whatever monstrosity nearly tore out the bulkhead, no hint of my erstwhile comrades looming like grinning shades at my bedside.  I could believe that it’s all in my imagination—but how to explain the annihilated bulkhead?  High out of my mind or lost in the throes or psychosis, I don’t think even I would prove so capable.  Perhaps I especially would prove insufficient.  I should stop rambling on.  This isn’t going to prove of any use to you.  If in the future I should have gone silent, assuming I’m still alive, I will leave leaflets in sealed cargo containers detailing my progress, detailing my frame of mind.  Anyways, let me get to the meat of it.

post-it_13 cargo manifestSomeone’s been real busy the last few days.  I’d be convinced there’s someone else alive on the ship the way this is going if just fucking anything would show up on the closed-circuit surveillance system.  Someone’s always just a few steps ahead of me, closing off bulkheads and deactivating the lights—in one particularly brutal case I was nearly asphyxiated when in a closed section someone shut off the life support on me.  Luckily, it’s actually somewhat harder to kill a man; even bad air can support a reasonably healthy young man for a good period of time, long enough to fumble about with the half-rusted plasma torch long affixed upon the wall.

For all my hard work, I haven’t been able to make it to the armory, which has me really worried.  If they can manipulate the ship to this extent, can they break the armory’s encryption?  Of course, I know where they’d likely be, holed in the command module, but that just shouldn’t be possible.  It was well locked behind me.

I can’t risk seeing Sally.  Whatever they are, I don’t want them being curious about her.

I’ve gotta get some sort of trump card, something that allow me to side-step all this additional and unnecessary security.  Might be something I could use in the cargo.  I think the situation is sufficiently fucked to justify this sort of theft.

Sword of the Saints: Sinner Chapter Twenty-Two

“How may I help you gentle…men, I said gentlemen, gentlemen—gentlemen, this morning—this afternoon?  Basking in the luxurious spray of the warden quay?  Out for an afternoon stroll to the pier?” quizzed Arius, gazing upon the severe and unblinking countenance of a snaggle-toothed lizard bearing an unfamiliar livery and closely attended by a bored-looking scaly spearman resting the broad rim of his ponderous shield across the bulge of his upper shoulder.

A head shorter and far too lackadaisical, Arius was virtually beneath their contempt, but they nevertheless barred the way with broad-chested bravado and school-yard bullishness.  Before they found form to masticate the words of their hissing tongue they were preceded by the officious candor of the bodyguard Gul Ladal.  “I recognize you, Sfernor and Slafnr, scions of House Tyletus.  Know yourselves to stand in the presence of the wards of a superior house.  Retire immediately and make way for the property of the primary house or doom yourselves to the clear-sky consequences, gurgling your inbred ichor from between your shattered teeth as you sputter your last in the desert dust.”

The incipients, callous with inculcated apathy, locked their gaze with sneering brutishness upon their golden opponent and replied, “The man-thing is ours to take, as right as any other.  You know the law.  He isn’t of the people, and if you cannot prevent him than we shall do as we please.”

They had answered badly.  Gul Ladal grasped his furious glaive tight, prepared ever since the day of his seniority to carry his obligations to the very last, seething now to thrash beneath their embroidered shields the whole of them into a fine paste no more fit than to be the chum of fishermen, but the friendly palm of his recent charge slipped comfortably up his shoulder, and the cavalier declared in a whisper, “You know, I have absolutely no doubt your prowess, but leave these to me.  It will be pedagogical to match my might against theirs, especially should there ever be need again.”

Gul Ladal, burning with the ire of their disrespect would have none of it, though the cavalier proceeded regardless.  Grunting with emasculation the bodyguard snapped his vision to his remaining responsibility in earnest, but the sight of so-far silent Rina, bounding in place upon her supple feet and eyes wide and moist with the apperception of raw potential, ameliorated his public shame, and he traced his steps backwards and ceded him the field.

“You both have such cute faces,” began the paladin, slowly drawing the unrelentingly pale blade from its sun-stained scabbard as they adopted a defensive stance, virtually invisible behind the heavy bulwark of the broad-rimmed shields punctuated by the broad spear-points meandering just close by.  “Let us not rest on ceremony.  I have not the time or the energy to waste my afternoon on you.  Fools you must be to contend so openly with your betters, the facsimile of soldiers that have never seen more campaign than abusing crooked slaves and your immediate inferiors.”  Grinning mischievously, he lowered himself into a fool’s stance, blade pointed earthward and remaining arm cast wide, mocking with the winking eyes of open contempt.

“A bit of old soldier’s magickry,” he decried within, dipping the point of his sword into the dusty turf, before casting the blinding spray into the unsightly visage of one, who coughed and spat and screamed and clutched meaninglessly at his temporarily blinded eyes, while his companion spattering the devil-speak of the subhuman confidently lunged with his ashen spear forward and forward and forward—and ever more criminally—until he over-extended himself, and his skewering implement lodged firmly and uselessly under the grasp of Arius’s left shoulder.  In desperate recrimination, the slithering lizard drove his broad-rimmed shield forward like a star eschewing the sky, but was himself yanked forwards and forwards and forwards and found himself falling helplessly upon the presented point of the sparkling blade that penetrated within and through the spine and left him there dead and done in mere moment.

His companion had by now barely cleared the obstruction from his gaze.  Having clattered the monstrous shield from his hands, he was careful not to scratch the gleaming blaze of his own spear point within the undesirable features of his own broad countenance.  Only through tears and hazy view could he witness the wide swing of that pale edge that beheaded spear and bearer alike, tossing what few seconds remained of his vision dizzily into the air to come familiar with a squirrel’s perspective, spewing blood from shattered vertebrae upon the ground.

“Filthy creatures,” Arius remarked, prodding the slowly stiffening bodies with his boot.  “Filthy creatures.”

Looking for Love (In All the Wrong Places)

It seems my mind is so changeable.  That’s not really the case, but it seems I can’t help but present it that way.

The marketing side of this business is as labyrinthine as it is mysterious to me and is also no small source of agony.  The latter half of this month has mostly been invested in tying up those ends rather than focusing on the writing aspect; to be honest, so much writing has been completed that I can afford a short respite.  As such, I’ve got to get control of the marketing tools at my fingertips, set up monthly schedules ahead of time–let them run.

Additionally, I fear I don’t produce enough daily content for my viewership.  For this reason I’m going to be releasing short articles–probably not more than three paragraphs each–dealing with somewhat random subjects as they occur in my head, some of which will concern writing but others of which will concern philosophy, philology, and comparative mythology–whatever else comes to mind.  I was a philologist before I was ever a writer, after all.  A good deal of that comes into my writing in often covert but sometimes overt aspects.

Anyways, that’s all for now.

–Madsen

The Recovered Logs of Midshipman Gregory Samuels Part 10

Midshipman’s Log Part 100

Gregory Samuels

October 12, 1252 CNS

First, I’d like to apologize, extend my apologies, get on my hands and knees in thorough prostration.  Last night was just a very bad night, like none I’ve ever had before, even before I joined this little merchant marine.  I would have begun this log earlier, but my morning and much of my mid-day had been utterly wiped clean.  I didn’t get a lick of sleep, you see; the pounding had continued throughout the evening, and I’d been worried through the lot of it that the bulkhead was going to become undone from its very hinges; how the door remained firm is utterly beyond me.  Whatever it was on the other side of that door was monstrously strong, many times removed from even the most athletic of strongmen.  The door, as I had said, had indeed held firm, but with the cessation of the endless pounding, thorough racket skittering like a cockroach across the wrinkles of my mind, I eventually found the courage to test the door, see what was on the other side.  I didn’t much fancy the idea of remaining you see, for reasons I’ve yet to mention.  In any case, the door was completely and utterly jammed, and I didn’t have a lot of tools or materials to work with.  If I ever wanted to get another bite, if I wanted to resupply my military arms, if I wanted to make sure the ship was to continue to run, I had to make a break for it.  As it was, I made creative use of a crowbar, a bare thimble of thermite gel stolen from Donnelly’s locker, and a spare cooking torch to free the lock, by which I eventually was permitted just the bare necessary narrowness to strain to the exterior hallways.  What a fucking mess.  Place was covered in shit, scorch marks everywhere.  I can only imagine what cyclopean horror had battered down the hallways.

post-it_12 hallucinationsI tried to get some sleep earlier—that night—despite the incessant pounding obliterating what remaining senses I still possessed, any facsimile of my mental wherewithal.  I’m not sure I still did.  Still do.  I saw them between the flashes of the overhead looming lights activated between the echoing blasts of monstrous potential.  My crew-mates.  Casting devilish aspersions from across the room, closing the distance in the red-light, green-light of the sudden and intermittent dark—they were only dispelled with the discharge of my firearm, but they somehow always returned bearing the grim countenance of some fattened feline for a wounded and struggling mouse leaking out the crimson profusions of the very end of life.  I hid under my bed.  But they found me.  I only had one bullet left.  I closed my eyes, sobbing, and poised the muzzle against the crook of my chin, waiting for them lay their hands upon me.

My eyes are red and worn and bruised.

I’m going to the command module to check our progress, see if any vessel’s picked up our emergency, but first I’ve got to access the armory.  Wish me luck.

Sword of the Saints: Sinner Chapter Twenty-One

“Wide as the eyes can see, as expansive as the imagination,” she delighted, gesturing with open arms towards the numberless threads that composed the urban quay.  “It’s always like this,” she continued, “ships coming in and out typically bearing spices but also such desirables as horses, smelted ores, even slaves—whatever’s necessary and whatever will make a profit.”

“Have to admit, I’ve not seen such an assembly of sails in all my life, perhaps won’t again my entire life-time.  Such a panoply of different ships—brigantines, barques, sloops, men-o-war, and god knows what else beyond my own reckoning, but I have to ask, first and foremost, what are those,” he queried, gesturing to the aggressive prows of several single-masted vessels abounding in three whole ranks of oars.

“Consider yourself lucky I’m so well-read,” she replied, winking coquettishly.  “They’re called ‘triremes,’ the technology of our human predecessors, what became the Ivederenghoi.  Fine fine warships, but they require an outrageous number of slaves to successfully man; I’m told they smell delicious of human secretions after some weeks of use.  Anyways, they’re all owned by the various Ga Zakazi; you can tell by the colors of the sails.  Those the property of House Barsica are marked in blue and black stripes.”

“Do you dominate the local trade?” he requited, noting down the great number of such crudely appointed sails.

“We certainly do fairly well,” she replied, silently counting the vessels stowed in harbor, “and while they can be used for trade as in warfare I would mark their maximum range as somewhat less than the more heavily masted vessels of our foreign contemporaries.”

“I would imagine,” was all his reply, gazing out upon the numerous marble-slabbed piers half-collapsed to the unimaginable depth below replaced ramshackle and ad-hoc with crudely-sawn and improperly planed wooden slats standing upon great tree-trunks unstripped of their massive bark and undoubtedly rotting below.  “So slaves are typically reserved for manual labor, but are they ever otherwise employed?”

“Oh in all sorts of things,” she replied thoughtfully, thumbing her chin.  “For a number of years we had the services of a fencing instructor who’s recently been given leave to retire in his old age.  There’s a number of smiths working in the employ of House Tyletus predominantly in the iron smelter.  We even had a shipwright who was—under peculiar circumstances, if you ask me—disappeared one evening from his private home.  Basically talent, wherever we can get it.  You see, we live in a bipartite society.  The general population that you’ve generally witnessed about live in covens.  The female Szchellezi have marginal intelligence, and they possess, trade, and stud the virtually witless males of our species, as need be, who are generally constrained to simple labor activities—occasionally used as brute force in warfare.  The females give birth to clutches of eggs and the infants fight for limited resources before being recognized by their covens.”

“Vicious.”

She nodded assent.  “We in the upper class have to maintain access to respectable human males for the sake of reproduction.  We give live birth and even nurse our young.  Unfortunately, while our females are completely valid, the males are mules, though they remain highly intelligent and excellent leaders in both civilian and military life.”

“So without a larger upper class—“

“There’s little we can do to improve our lot.”

“The very opposite of a top-heavy society.”

“But what about the mules then, necessarily they maintain a libido even if they’re sterile?”

Here Gul Ladal interjected, “The degenerate slaves run brothels throughout the city.  Women—and men—that have been born within and never blemished by sunlight, whose beauty dwarfs their country own.”

“Somehow, I feel dirty,” Arius concluded.

Twitter Bitter

In all honesty, this is a long time coming, but I imagine few of my subscribers will have ever noticed; that’s how useless Twitter is.  Over the last year, and longer, considering, Twitter hasn’t done anything to update its product, make it in any way more convenient; they’ve focused on preventing users from communicating with each other, in the process creating echo chambers, in an attempt–in my consideration–to scare of the unwanted portion of their subscriber base.  Of course it’s working, but it’s not stopping them from hemorrhaging cash.  For a while I just sort of watched until it began to affect me personally.  Virtually everything I post on Twitter is throttled to a miserable grave; no-one I am connected to can see it.  Even worse, most creatures I’m connected to are themselves helpless.  I think my posts are actually unpinned from the various conversations in which they are a participant

Anyways, as such, I’ve made a pact with a friend, and the two of us have disabled our Twitter accounts which should automatically be deleted within a month’s time.  If you want to stay appraised of my work, this site continues to be your best bet, but I also update frequently to Facebook and Goodreads.  Moreover, I am making an attempt to have a presence on Tumblr, which is unfortunate as I’ve no idea how it works, but posting content to the medium is at least very easy.

–Madsen

These Are Supposed to be Progress Updates

Instead, they’ve become rather more like ramblings of a semipolitical nature–not that there’s anything wrong with that.  The terrors of the last few months have left me with reams and reams of completed work.  I could go nearly two years without hardly needing to write a thing.  It goes without saying that the writing side of my occupation has been well attended.  The issue, again and again and again, of course, lies in the marketing, in which I seem a thing completely hopeless.  I don’t have tens of thousands of dollars to throw away on an advertising firm; so it’s my problem.

I’m supposed to be uplifting.

I’ve been examining fencing manuals.  I’m thinking of writing a short set of articles called the “Little Book of Hugs,” as a sort of inspiration.

People possess emotional depth we’re typically unaware of.  I would say so endemically.  It’s always there, but you might spend your whole life without realizing it.  You have to be pushed, under some sort of stimulus, something typically unpleasant and unwanted, and when you finally scratch the surface of your depths, you’ll wish you hadn’t.  The problem is that once you’ve discovered it, you’ll find you can’t help but return again and again and again until you resemble what others conceive a human in appearance only, now a creature of alien sapience lying beneath tactile flesh.  And it is indeed an issue of want, but that specifically you didn’t want.

Cryptic, yes?

I prefer not to talk about life experiences without the medium of an invented character.

I think that’s all I’ve got in me at the moment.  Remember to take care of yourselves.

–Madsen

The Recovered Logs of Midshipman Gregory Samuels Part 9

Midshipman’s Log Part 99

Gregory Samuels

October 11, 1252 CNS

H-h-h-help!  *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE* H-h-h-elp m-me!  *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*  I j-j-j-j-egh.  I just c-c-can’t t-take it.  *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*  I just can’t take it.  I can’t take it.  Anymore.  Not anymore.  *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*  They’re at the door.  They’ve been at it for hours.  I thought they would have given up by now.  *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*  The bulkhead’s held up so far but *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE* several more hours of this, and even I have my doubts.  I-I-I’ve still got my pistol.  I somehow doubt I’m going to stop whatever’s on the other side with this, hurling itself at the bulkhead door with the force of a battering ram *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*.
post-it_10 no ideaThe lights have been flickering in and out.  I don’t need to tell you I’m scared shitless *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*.  I’m just at my wit’s end.  I p-p-probably shouldn’t tell you this, or I probably should have mentioned at the beginning, but a few years ago I was diagnosed with *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*.  Took *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*, but when this position opened up, I couldn’t say no, but they wouldn’t have taken me either.  Dropped the *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*, pretended I’d never heard of a ph-ph-ph-*INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*, and I had my medical data falsified.  But I never had hallucinations before *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE*.  Do you hear that?  I can see it.

*INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE* OH GOD!  The lights went out.  Oh god oh god oh god.  They’re not coming on.  Hmm… please.  Just turn back on.  Please *INDETERMINATE LOUD NOISE* at least for me.

[Intervention of several minutes intermittent with continued loud noise of indeterminate source.]

post-it_11 schizoO’Leary?  Is that… you?  What… what… fucking flickery fucking lights.

*SOUND OF A FIREARM DISCHARGING*

STAY THE FUCK AWAY!

*SOUND OF A FIREARM DISCHARGING*

GOD FUCKING DAMNIT!

*FIREARM DISCHARGES SEVERAL MORE TIMES BEFORE THE FEED CUTS OUT.*

Sword of the Saints: Sinner Chapter Twenty

The amalgamated vulgus, whether suffering under the sin of the sky or scaly beyond all reason, by instinct and preternatural revulsion made great way for the apparently unaccompanied swordsman whose footsteps reverberated not normally in the ear but peculiar through the spine, too many tones too low to be detected in the auditory faculties of species alive or dead, animated as he shortly was with the solar god that for mere moments made him a living avatar cast in the image of the holy saints alive with molten bronze and hissing fire that poured to grim effect upon a receding earth fearful of the life that made it.  He strode confidently, like a liberated Atlas bounding from peak to peak and abounding with unearthly laughter; meanwhile his companions, shivering in the broiling air, could hardly conceal their visceral contempt that made them shy just away, so far unable to produce a salutation.

In many ways it was a wondrous city, a harbor city, filled with the colors of innumerable different accents, colors, foods, and cultures—the gifts of the blinding legion of sailing ships that filled the harbor far beyond all capacity.  Strange smells, marvelous seasonings, the slow-cooked fats drizzling upon the floor of a tall and narrow earthen oven from an animal for which he had no name, despite being lettered and educated and not altogether unfamiliar with the sailing life.  In any direction a man might cast a stone and eat something different every day for the whole score of his mortal existence, a true cosmopolitan society of both men and those only debatably.

Leaning his shoulders back comically, he asked his traveling companions with a twinkle in his eyes, “Hungry, my dear friends?  I’ve a shiny coin or two that might purchase such contents that would stun you for a lifetime.”

It was some time before her pipe-organ passageways unsealed themselves, and staggering as if gasping for breath she replied meekly and repeatedly, “No…  no…  I think I’m fine.  I’m full enough, as it is.”

“It’s a shame,” he roared in gleeful reply.  “I had you figured for a quixotic.  I had you figured for a scholar.  What you witnessed is something none of your kind may possibly witness ever again, something I may never again practice or risk the wrath of my superior.  Very few humans ever even observe the wonderful horrors of the internal cult of the Solar Legion.”

“Right…  right…  but—.”

“But I understand.  To say it’s traumatic would be an understatement.  I myself have only once previous ever been the inductee, at my proving.  The consequences are intended to be grave.  Everything is intended to be grave.  There is no going back, and for the unprepared it can have…  devastating consequences, adjoining with the merest glimpse with the eye in the sky.”

“I think I might be sick.”

“Shall we back to your residence?”

Images of her white-robed wedding flooded back into her imagination, galloping across the empty space of her eyes, and choking down the morning’s victuals she started again with a tiny murmur in her heart.  “No no.  You promised to show me something I hadn’t seen before, and I promised you the same.  It wouldn’t be right to end with half-hearted measures.  Come on now, you haven’t yet witnessed the great glory of the city of Tlexloris Phtha, jewel of the Szchellezi Commonwealth.”

“Surprised you Szchellezi didn’t retain the city’s ancient moniker, with your alleged obeisance to the solar cult.”

Struggling to accelerate to his pace, she snatched his hand in her own, feeling the digits with a strange unfamiliarity, which she couldn’t rightly recognize, but she knew it was there, lingering just beneath the surface a strange hardness and a lattice work texture that had not been there before.