Wellington Street http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet In which we take a stroll down a very strange lane. en-us Mon, 19 Nov 2018 16:15:03 +0000 http://sett.com Sett RSS Generator Building 8 "Fire in the Walls" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-fire-in-the-walls Leaving town tonight. Bags packed. We know where, but that doesn't matter. Just need to get away from this house. From this street. From the smell that won't go away.

Thought about cleaning it up, but it's in the fibers of the rug now. Seeped into the floor. Considered burying what was left of Lloyd. Decided against it. What would be the point? Barely anything left to bury anyhow.

And what is left was hardly what he really was.

Came home when she called me. Margaret. She was screaming. Had tried calling the police. Tried leaving the house. Only number that worked was mine. I tried to get her out when I arrived but he wouldn't let me. Wouldn't let us leave.

Wanted us to know. Wanted us to know why.

We tried for five minutes to get her outside, but the moment I stepped inside the door closed.

I wandered the house. Looking for escape. I looked out the back window. Out towards the neighbors house. But I couldn't see their house. There was something in the way. Something bigger than their house.

I looked down.

What was Lloyd...was never Lloyd. He shed his skin.

Grabbed my gun. Emptied it through the window.

He laughed without laughing. Hollow, empty laugh that cackled at the end like glass.

Something inside my head stirred.

Then Margaret and I started bleeding from the eyes.

It's hard to breathe even now.

Lloyd...my friend when Margaret was away. The hunter. The Lyld. All those bodies he brought home...Those oily things...I miss my friend.

The pain subsided. I heard it. Heard it like she said she had been hearing it. In my head. That horrible voice in my head.

“Mother doesn't know how to stop,”

Looked where he motioned...under the barren tree. She was trying to hide. But she couldn't. Her blackened flesh moved on its own...shifted on its own. She couldn't keep it still.

She saw me looking.

Rushed to the back door...issued forth...like the surf. Was tapping on the glass...tapping on the glass.

Never stopped moving. Her legs...writhing things never stopped moving. Like they were dancing. She looked so...scared. Stomach was distended. Then the weight shifted down... Tried to scream. She and I. It's like all the sound was gone. He didn't want anyone to hear. The dark, oily thing erupted out from her and struck the screen door...started melting the glass. She looked like she was in pain.

She is a monster...she looked like she was in pain.

She went to cradle the thing. Hold the newborn...

The Lyld...Lloyd...snatched up the newborn...pulsing and shifting...crushed it in his hand. The remnants fell down on the lawn. Snow melted and the ground smoldered.

The mother screamed...screamed with rage. Tried to run but he pinned her to the ground.

Sky was green. The siren began to go off. Sky darkened further. Smelled the insulation burning in the walls. My head screamed with pain. Felt like it would explode. He was laughing. He was delighted. He was killing us...

Then he stopped.

He looked at me with concern.

Then he was smiling. Teeth like tusks...smiling. Suppressing a giggle.

My mind wandered numbly. Why my house? Why me?

“Oh Michael,” he said. “Did you really think this was all about you?”

He almost sounded tired, but he wasn't. He was angry.

“...You are small...You buried me...like I was your pet...”

Started screaming. Just me. He left Margaret alone. I was screaming and screaming. Body was breaking. I wanted to die. I just wanted the pain to stop. I begged Margaret. Begged her to stop it. I cried hot, awful tears...skin felt like hot iron...

Screaming...please...please stop...please...

I blinked.

He was gone. They were just gone. The sky...it was night. It was afternoon when I had gotten home. The pain went away, but it took so so long.

Margaret. She is okay...I think she is okay. She won't talk to me.

I understand.

We are going to a hotel out of town. Has a pool.

Stay there till we figure it all out.

Skin is bruising all over. Went to the hospital. Broken ribs. Heavy bruising. Nothing that would kill me...just hurt me. He hurt me for not knowing what was living in my house all this time.

Did he...enjoy my company? I know...shouldn't think like that. But...Lloyd...I miss Lloyd. He was with me when everyone was gone. Would greet me when I got home. Watched movies with my wife and I...purred when I scratched under his chin...

Why did he stay? To feed and grow? To kill the pulsing, oily spawn?

The mother of monsters...Echidna...

Put Margaret at risk. Being around me puts Margaret at risk.

Lloyd...

I got him so I would have company.

When it gets cold.

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Fri, 16 Nov 2018 02:41:19 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-fire-in-the-walls
Building 8 "The Dead Can't Leave" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-the-dead-cant-leave “Please help me. I don't know what to do. Everyone in my house is dead and the thing that did it won't let me leave. Sometimes I think he is gone, but then I hear him in my head. Mocking me. He enjoys my anguish. It's why he left me alive.

He said a father's pain is unique. It is why he killed my wife and my child...Christine and Alex...every time I try to move them from the couch so they can be buried he takes a finger. I only have six left. I stopped trying to stop the bleeding, but I don't think he wants me to die yet. When he wants me dead, I think he will tell me.

A father's pain is unique. When he loses everything...now that I have lost everything...I feel broken. Empty and hollow. I want to feel angry, but I can't.

They are still here. They just aren't moving. They smell and their skin looks funny, but that's it. They are here.

I can't even grieve them because he won't let me put them away.

He won't let me die.

The Lyld...he doesn't mind me talking about him. He wants us to know about him. Knowing about something like him...it's too much. Too awful. A thing that can hunt and murder...my entire family without me waking up. Who can keep me in my house just to feed off of my pain. What do you even do with something like that? I don't know. I cry all the time, and it just chuckles.

It doesn't need me to suffer. It just likes it when I do.

I tried to kill it. I have a gun. But it did nothing to it. When I tried to use it on myself it just...it didn't work. It...just wouldn't shoot The gun just stopped working...everything stopped working.

Ropes don't stay tied. The ground goes soft before I land...I want to die, but he won't let me.

Please. I don't know what to do. I can't escape. This lurking thing with black hair. I see it in my dreams. It is here. It has come to see the others be born.

It is the hunter of monsters.

It is looking for its mother.

My mother is dead. She is sitting in the arm chair.”

Haven't talked to the neighbors...can I call them that? Were they ever really my friends? Maybe they were. Maybe its me that's making it weird.

Lot's of people are movin...

Not movin. Just gone.

Lots of funerals happening. Even opened up the old cemetery again. Not sure what they are burying.

All have to be closed casket.

I found one of those oily things in my room yesterday. Laying on the bed. Burned a hole in it. Took a lot of bullets. Had a lot to spare. Had to sleep on the fold out bed. New bed coming tomorrow.

Gave up on putting these things in the garbage. Just put them outside. Called the city. Animal control. No one called back. Think they are dead too.

Margaret...she wants to leave. Oily things are spreading like a plague. Lloyd came back with something yesterday. Thing definitely was a human originally. Margaret didn't want to help me move the body into the back. Ended up fighting...we never fight. I convinced her. She helped me move the body.

They don't rot. Don't rot at all. That's good. Don't need the smell.

We can't leave. Feel like I am involved somehow. The attack at the mannequins house. All of them in my yard. The one on my bed. Margaret said it tried to attack me. I don't think it wanted to. Wanted to say hello.

Maybe.

Hard to think. Normally start drinking when I'm stressed. Can't drink though.

Promised Margaret.

She's coming home late. I don't like it. I am tired. I miss her. Things are hard. Why are they hard...

Need to relax...

She is lovely. Love her more than anything in the world. But we cannot leave. Been spinning my wheels. Feeling worthless. Small. Lost my children. Almost lost my wife...

I lost my first wife. Visited Sarah's grave. Three funerals going on that day. People weren't crying. Just looked horrified. They were all horrified.

Someone put a dead dog on Sarah's grave. They had replaced the flowers. I put the dog in a plastic bag. Reminded me of the dog in the rain. Felt the same way. Felt sick to my stomach but managed to get home okay. Buried the dog in the back yard. Like I buried the other dog. Came inside and started crying. Don't remember the last time I cried.

I am supposed to cry. Shows I am getting better.

I am getting better.

Margaret's night classes. When I think on it, I am glad she is going. Want her to have her time. We get too tied up in one another sometimes. Need to feel ourselves out. She smiled at me today. Over breakfast. She likes the way I make the coffee.

She smiles like no one else can.

Smiles with her entire body.

It's warm.

Thinking about Thanksgiving. Not sure what to plan. Besides the mannequins we don't know many people alive. Could bring her parents. They don't really like me though. Considered bringing the kids, but its too dangerous.

Maybe Margaret it right. Maybe we should leave. But...Wellington Street follows you. No matter where you go it comes with you.

Most of my coworkers are dead.

Now it's just young people now and me. Working the restaurant.

Nice kids. Don't give me shit for the tremors...

Today was the coldest day of the year so far.

Got dark really early today.

I'm waking up early to see the sun rise with Margaret. Not sure how much longer we can do that this year. Have to make those moments count.

Don't want to mow the lawn.

Lloyd hides things in the leaves.

It's a sea of brown and red.

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Thu, 08 Nov 2018 16:02:01 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-the-dead-cant-leave
Building 8 "Coming Out of Their Skin" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-coming-out-of-their-skin I am surprised. Would have imagined that losing that much blood would have made me pass out, but instead I am awake. Giddy even. I look down at the sink and I try to remove the blood from around and within it. But there are little crevices, inconsistencies in the counter-top...

Can't possibly get it all.

I look off towards the neighbor's house. Their porch light's on. It hurts my eyes like crazy...He is standing out there, hidden under the glare of the light. If I hold up my hand, I can see his outline. Put my hand down and he disappears. But not really.

He hasn't moved in a half hour, though I suppose that isn't strange for him. Technically he never moved from the moment I met him. Not in a traditional sense.

The flickering of lights and the smell of flowers.

The way he speaks without seeming to move his lips and the look of his bad skin...

Not his skin. Just something he has been wearing to look normal. Like a human. I can't see him now, but I'll never forget what he looks like underneath. When the surface is pulled away.

That broken line of teeth jammed into the plastic head, filled with foam. That blank, eyeless expression.

A mannequin.

I should have seen it coming.

The neighbors, Margaret and I met around five. Their house smelled different. The pungent flowers I was used to had been killed off in the early frost and had been replaced with something less aromatic. Something that didn't cover smells as well.

Had some dinner. There was a sound coming from upstairs. Like a skittering. They seemed as confused by it as we were. Assumed it was animals hiding out in the attic. Trying to escape the cold.

Talked about what to watch. Settled on an obscure title we never heard of. Went to put away the dishes. They insisted I don't. Tried to anyway. They weren't moving.

Lights flickered. Room went dark. The man appeared in front of me.

Didn't mean to react like I did. Didn't mean to shove him. He fell back and caught his head on the edge of the door frame. I heard something tear.

Lights flickered again. Then it was dark.

Power had gone out completely.

Thought he was going to attack me, but when the lights went on my neighbor was just standing by the refrigerator.

Then there was a heavy pattering of feet as a thing rushed down the hall and into the kitchen.

It was breathing badly. That large, black, oily thing.

I think it tried to scream. But it couldn't. All it could do was howl.

Like the dog I think it used to be...

I held up my arm as it lunged at me...Its bite burned my skin on contact as it thrashed around. I cried out, and when it released me I could see a piece of my arm hanging from its mouth. It paused, its eyes narrowing as it lunged at me again, pulling my arms apart and going for my throat.

The lights flickered.

The thing howled as my neighbor grabbed it by the neck and pulled it off of me. He lifted it and drove it through the dinner table, the lights still flickering.

It flipped back onto its feet and lunged at him, its jaws separating and clamping down onto his head. I heard a scream as Margaret and his wife came into the room. I grabbed the knife block off the counter and began to drive them into the thing as it continued to thrash around. It was only after the sixth knife that the thing began to slow down.

Then his wife grabbed its jaws and pulled in opposite directions.

It fell onto the ground in a heap and didn't move anymore.

Ground underneath it began to sizzle.

The lights settled, and when they did the man and his wife were standing in front of me. The skin on their hands was bubbling. The skin on his head was torn off, revealing the plastic underneath. The skin was scorched, blackening on the edges around the bite.

He wasn't bleeding.

I don't think any of us knew how to react. It was Margaret that finally broke the silence and pulled me away. She tried to get me to go to the hospital. I only relented when I realized I couldn't fix my arm with what I had. I have the field experience. After a few close calls during more dangerous assignments I brushed up.

But it wasn't enough.

I'm back from the hospital, looking off at the neighbor's lawn. I'm sure he has gotten rid of the body. Has to have. He is still standing there. I am sure he is looking at me. How he manages that I don't know since he doesn't have eyes. At least, not his own.

They have been my neighbor's for years.

Entire time I was living next to monsters.

Monsters I thought were my friends...maybe still are...

It is cold tonight. Cold creeps into wounds. Makes them hurt more than you'd think. When the cold hits a nerve ending...

Loyd keeps trying to lick the wound.

The tree out front is bare.

I want to sleep.

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Thu, 01 Nov 2018 05:30:33 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-coming-out-of-their-skin
Building 8 "The Man in the Green Suit" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-the-man-in-the-green-suit My name is Margaret. Over the last few years my husband has maintained this blog, taken over from the previous owner of the house we live in. After all the incidents, his therapist considered it a good idea for him to put down his experiences so that he could keep track of where he was at from day to day.

At the request of the therapist, I was requested to offer my own perspective for comparison. It is also hard some days for me to speak for very long, so this is an easier way to communicate for both of us.

The leaves are all turning gold and the color of blood. Soon, the trees that line the street will be empty, and the ground will be littered with the remnants. Michael and I spend a lot of time outside this time of year. Out of all of the seasons, fall is the most pleasing to the eye.

Around Halloween, we plan to have a party at the neighbors house behind us. I am actually rather excited for it. It has been a while since I have gone out with Michael anywhere, and it feels like he is closer to them than I am. The wife is lovely, and maintains the most wonderful array of flowers. She shares my distaste for cut flowers, and I think if we spend time together we could end up getting along.

I love my husband.

I am unsure why I feel like I need to state that. I think it is hard for the casual reader to understand our relationship. It isn't really as bad as it looks. He has his ups and downs, but that is normal for a marriage. And when I look back on our time together I see so much love there. He keeps up with his treatment and his medicine, and he doesn't drink at all lately...

Michael misses his kids. I see it in the sullen look he gets when he looks at Halloween decorations. He used to love raking the leaves and building piles for Noah and Beth to jump into. It is easier to just mow them in, but it was a special kind of extra effort that really helped him stay connected. With the kids gone, he just mows them, even though I tell him I would like to jump into the piles.

There were some bodies found near an old railway. They had been dead for weeks, and had steel bars thrust through their joints. Their skin was missing, along with some other things. They wouldn't specify it in the paper. I hate to admit that I am glad the kids aren't around. I love them and I miss them too, but this place is simply dangerous.

There are terrible things that happen here. It just isn't a good place for children.

Thursday we are going to go out and get some pumpkins. I'm am really excited. People talk about relationships in terms of grand gestures but it is really the small things you do together that matter. It is definitely nice to go to a production, but sometimes just going out and selecting a pumpkin with the person you love is all that you need to know it is right.

It has been a hard couple of years. I can admit that. I can't even tell you how hard it is to look into a mirror and not see the face I was born with. There are days where the medicine doesn't do as good of a job and it gets a little puffy. But that is all part of the process. I try to make the best of it. After all, Michael's last wife endured much worse.

I have had to pick out different make-up. Find ones that work better for my new complexion. It has been a process. Thankfully my eyes are the same color so I didn't need to change too much. But it is hard, and I want to be able to do more about it.

That's probably why I have been taking the night classes. I am trying to find ways to make myself feel more able. More put together. Or maybe I am trying to reinvent myself in some way. But I know what I need to do to make things right, at least for me. Michael seems to understand that, even if he doesn't really know everything.

It is strange. Lately I have had an old story running through my mind. When I was younger, my mom would tell me the story every Halloween. It was one of the few traditions we would follow in my house, things being as they were as a kid.

The story was about an old man. One Wellington Street it is a commonly known legend. But each person tells a different account about him, and this is the one my family used to share.

A man was walking through the woods at night. He had lost his way and instead of trying to move on in the dark he settled in and built a fire. The night was moderately warm, but the fire kept away the things in the dark, and so he kept the fire going well into the night.

Eventually his stack of wood began to dwindle, and he began to have to ration the wood. But the wood wasn't very good for burning and so, to his dismay, the fire began to darken.

As he looked out into the woods, he saw an old man in a green suit looking at him. Even in the dark he could see the teeth of the old man, outlined against his blackened gums. He remained just out of range of most of the light, but as the fire got weaker he crept closer and closer.

When at last the fire was barely anything but embers, the old man stepped forward and sat down across from the lost man.

The old man said the man was lost because he tended the fire. He didn't let himself feel the cold. That he would help him now that there was nothing left to burn. The man tried to escape, only to find that the darkness now surrounded him completely. An unimaginable cold gripped his body, first in his bones, then spreading out into the muscles. Last of all was his heart, and when the cold hit that he collapsed into sleep.

In the morning, the man woke to find himself unharmed. But for the rest of his days he found himself always sitting a little cooler than he would like. But he never got lost again, because instead of lighting a fire he would go ahead and remember what it felt like to be cold. He would sit and linger on that feeling.

And then he would find his way.

Over the years, I've often wondered what the lesson of the story could be. I tried asking my mother, but she has always insisted I try to think such things through.

Ultimately, I think the point is that sometimes the thing that keeps us warm can be the very thing that keeps us lost. And that if we ever really want to truly keep moving forward, a little pain can be the price we must pay.

Lloyd is laying on my lap. Or maybe it would be better to say he is laying across it. He is healthy, all things considered.

Sometimes when he meows it almost sounds like words.

Almost.

I've never owned a cat his size, but I suppose that isn't too strange. At least for Wellington Street.

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Wed, 10 Oct 2018 00:43:11 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-the-man-in-the-green-suit
Building 8 "Return to Darkness" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-return-to-darkness “I think I am the last one left alive here. Everyone else has either been converted or died. There are bodies of animals and humans wherever I go, and the strange thing is, they don't seem to rot. As if even bacteria are dead. But somehow I am still alive and I think I know why.

Things seem to disappear from this place. Notes and cassettes. Only simple things. They seem to get through when other things can't.

I think that's on purpose.

An intentional choice, an allowance made by the Dark. He wants those on the other side of the boundary to try and be prepared. Not warned. There is no warning that could possibly make it easier. But he is not cruel. So he keeps willing that these testaments slip through. That people outside the gray know that Erebus is going to find his way soon.

Just like he always does.

There is a cruel intention in all of this.

There are things that slip through. Of different realities. Different eventualities. They do not escape into the new world to conquer.

No.

These monsters are running from him.

And now there is so little time left.

He is just about finished here. I seem to be the only one left, and I suspect that the only reason why I have not yet been converted or died is so I can let the people on the other side of the veil know what is coming.

Whether you feel despair or joy, determination or anger does not matter. The conversion to the dark is not something emotional. It is simply a process.

Like entropy, and when he is finished all of reality will return to where it began.

It will return to darkness.

And on the seventh day he will rest.

The world is gray. I see it like that no matter the time of day. I can't say for sure if I am still alive. I refuse to look in the mirror to find out. All I know is there are blank spots in my memory, and I find that I am no longer hungry.

Every day it is getting darker, and I am having trouble remembering what the sun looks like.”

Last few nights. Same dream. Feels less like a dream. Way back when. When I researched Sarah. What she thought in the end. Studied the occult. Prophecy.

Feels less like a dream.

Wake up. Feel cold. Like the heat was taken from my body.

Nothing seems to help. Tried more blankets. Used a heater.

Wake up. Feel cold.

Fades with time. Last night. Dream felt like the last one. The thing that used to be a man. Didn't have long. Doesn't have long. Won't have long...

Dream feels somehow out of time. Separate.

Margaret seems to be having the same dream. Not sure what to think about that.

October is coming. Not sure how to feel. Every year its a reminder of bad memories. But this will be the first year without the kids. Just Margaret and I. Handing out candy. Maybe going to the local fair.

They are bringing back the house of mirrors.

Feels like things are coming together now. This is the way things are unless something terrible happens. Not sure if I like it. But it is enough.

Margaret and I talk like we used to. About silly things. About anything really.

I've missed her voice. The way her hands link with mine when we walk.

This time of year we take lots of walks.

Take Loyd with too. Some reason he likes to come with.

Always staring at things.

Dogs avoid him.

We like to watch the colors change. To note the changes in the air. The decorations as they go up. Forgot how much these moments meant to us.

I've been sick for so long.

A few more days and we reach October.

Planning a get together with the neighbors.

Look different. Skin isn't as flaky. Say they managed to get surgery. Correct the damage.

Surgery...

Hate that word.

Flowers are almost all dead.

Hibernating.

Preparing for the cold.

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Sat, 29 Sep 2018 19:48:47 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-return-to-darkness
Building 8 "Grave Dirt and Rain" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-grave-dirt-and-rain Storming real bad tonight. Seems storms, especially the bad ones, bring out the worst in this place. Been years since I started this. Lots of storms in that time. Storms before that...I don't react well to storms. Always liked them, but...leave me feeling wrong. Messy in the mind.

Ever since the dog. That dog in the storm.

I hardly need to focus to feel its wet fur under my nails. It has been over forty years and still it is so damn easy. Tried hard to push the memory down. But it won't go away. No matter what. Dog fur has a specific feel to it. So different from hair. And that dog...the way the fur and skin shifted under my nails...

Margaret is sitting up with me. Watching the storm. Seems uncomfortable. I get it though. Been a lot of damage to make up for. Even if I am not drinking. Still shaky.

Rained the day Sarah died.

Rained when they found Margaret.

Today the swelling is low. Guess that never truly goes away. The skin grafts were mostly foreign tissue. But the pills do their job and keep her comfortable. She is sitting there, petting Loyd. He wants to go outside but we won't let him out in the storm.

Just isn't safe.

Don't want him to bring back something nasty again. The missing neighbors...next door...police have cleared the place. But you never known what Loyd can get his hands on. Better to just keep him in tonight.

Think I see something in the rain. Something sopping wet, covered in ferns.

It is nothing. Just the storm playing tricks.

I worked a little tonight, but business was slow because of the storm. Saw a group of old people standing on the corner. Damn fools. No umbrella or nothing. Tried to flag them down, but they just kept waiting. Looked sick. Eventually they moved on. One of them waved at me. Wasn't sure who it was. Seemed familiar though.

She smiled at me today. Margaret I mean. Or at least the face she has smiled at me. No matter how much time passes it is so strange for her to have a different face from when I met her. Like a second relationship. At this point I have known her longer with her new face than without it. I suppose that was going to happen, and that I would notice it eventually.

Just wasn't expecting to notice so soon. For it to upset me.

Kids are back in school. Can't remember when I saw them last. My sister says they are both doing well. Noah isn't sleepwalking anymore...

I miss them.

Nights like these often saw the kids, Margaret, and I just hanging out in the den. Just working on stuff silently. Just being a family. Now I think on it, I think storms brought us together more than anything. Now storms just make me remember them. It hurts like hell. But it was the right thing. Sending them away.

I am not a good father. Try to be a good husband.

Made Margaret some coffee. Had to special order it. Hard to find. She appreciates the effort, even if she still feels distant. Its okay though. We have been through worse. I've done worse. Paid for worse. All we need is time.

First time Margaret and I met I was a mess. Hadn't been long after Sarah had died. Somehow that didn't bother her. She saw it as a challenge. She wanted to see what was underneath all that pain. I don't think I'll ever forgive myself for exposing her to the Surgeon. But she never has hated me for it. And that likely makes it worse.

Dreams are getting worse. I am sleeping worse than Margaret. The dream of the thing in the rain. I wake up out of breath, with tears in my eyes. Try sleeping pills but just makes the dreams more vivid.

The reds become more vivid.

I think of the beach. The one with the beach house.

I think that was the last good day Margaret and I had. We have made it work since then. Every couple has had rough patches. Considering what we have been through it make sense for us to struggle more than most.

Think of the beach. Smell of the surf. The feel of the sand.

Struggling to remember it right. Keep seeing it in the rain. Wet sand underfoot.

Cold.

I remember something in the water. Or maybe I think I remember it. I see the lightening and the churning water and somewhere in the water is a thing I can't easily describe.

Its black, rubbery skin shifts about, and I realize it is tentacles, not the skin, that are moving.

Always shifting. Blood red eyes looking at me. Not with expectation. Just looking at me. The way a human looks at a blade of grass or a pebble.

Inconsequential.

I thought I heard a thump on the glass. Went ahead and looked.

Just a branch, but Loyd got out. Margaret tried to stop him, but he moves fast for a cat his size. No matter. He will come back, probably with something disgusting. I've started just burying what he brings us. Just too many garbage bags.

Especially don't like when he comes back wet though. Makes the smell of grave dirt even stronger than usual.

I miss my children. I miss how my life used to be.

We make choices. I made mine.

Margaret has made hers.

Now all we can do is just try to live with what we have done.

Rain doesn't seem to be slowing at all. Going to probably check the siding in the morning.

Loyd always wants me to pet him when he gets back. But I don't like to. Feels like the dog. Makes my stomach lurch. Or maybe it is something else. That curiosity that never went away. The way flesh feels under my hands.

Talked to the therapist.

Set up an appointment but never went.

Why would I?

The rain keeps falling in sheets. Again I think I see something move. Something large framed in the darkness.

But it is just the rain. There is nothing out there.

Just rain.

And buried corpses.

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Wed, 12 Sep 2018 04:06:54 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-grave-dirt-and-rain
Building 8 "Covered in Blood" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-covered-in-blood I am happy to have her back. I suppose that isn't surprising. I am trying to connect with her again. Feel wrong needing to work at that. Used to be really close. Now talking seems to be difficult. Not like we are fighting or anything. Just having trouble finding things to talk about. Told her about Loyd, and she could tell he was getting bigger.

Didn't mention the things he has been bringing home. Not that she isn't aware. Sure she reads these things. Just tired. Don't like having to go into it.

No idea what I am even supposed to do.

Problem with this place. So much fucked up. Get used to it. But when it gets really strange...you're used to just letting it pass. Hard to believe that something would get to me. After everything I've been through...that we have both been through.

Seeing her smile makes me happy. Didn't realize how much I have been missing her company. Didn't think much about how I was feeling about it. Now she is back it is pretty much all I am thinking about.

She is planning on taking night classes on the weekend. Think she is trying to give me an excuse to go back to therapy...

Suppose I should.

We are coming back round. Halloween is in a few months.

It's never a good time for me.

Lot's of memories. Been almost three years since I started writing here. Not sure where it leaves me. My kids are gone. Living with my sister. Just better that way...they don't want me around. I make Noah sick, because I am sick.

Has a lot changed? For Margaret a lot has changed. And...

I can't say I am okay with that.

I brought her into my life. Put her in the line of fire.

How does she forgive me? Has she forgiven me?

I don't.

Always been like this. A little disconnected. On my end. Even with the medicine...

Going to go to therapy again. Think I have to. For the sake of my marriage. I think...it is time I talked about why I am like this now. My first wife...that's part of it I'm sure. But I was bad before that. I know that now. And the dog...

I've had time to process that.

Was in some remote village. Can't name the place...

Never learned the name. Probably not allowed to say even if I did.

At this point it doesn't matter. For all intents and purposes it doesn't exist anymore.

Traveling with a military escort. No other way to travel. At some point we got fired upon. I got separated and ran.

Not smart. Wasn't thinking. Just panicking.

Wandered away. Wandered for hours, just losing water. Thought I would die. Was sure I would die.

For being stupid. Just for being stupid.

Came upon a village.

What was left of it.

Someone had come through and killed everyone...well, almost everyone. But they hadn't been shot. I know what that looked like. The people had been torn apart...crushed and broken. I couldn't...I still can't imagine what could possibly have done that. What could have torn their heads from their bodies...

Only one left was a young girl. Couldn't have been more than eight. Flies were buzzing around her head. Clinging to her head. At first, I thought it was because she was injured or dying.

Got closer. Wasn't dying.

Was covered in blood.

Not her own blood.

Didn't really react to me. Just looked at me with dead, detached eyes. There were bodies in the hut. Probably her parents. Had been moved. Girl had hidden under their mangled bodies. And now...now she was just sitting there in the middle of the hut. Holding her mother's hand. What was left of it.

I tried to find other survivors, but she was the only one.

Tried to communicate. Didn't know much. Used translators.

She spoke back...I understood...somehow I understood...

Said she knew about the dog. Knew where it was buried. Said it didn't stay dead. Whispered about other things. Things I hadn't done yet...Was scared. Never been so scared in my life. Just sat down, looking at her...For the longest time.

Became dark. Military came through. Search and rescue. Hadn't traveled as far as I had thought.

Before they took her away, she whispered to me.

“Non Fel Virginia.”

Asked about her later. Medic who grabbed her was confused.

She was dead.

Was dead the whole time.

Since then I have done those things she spoke of. Not on purpose. Like a drive. That's when I nightmares about the thing in the desert started.

Was never right after that.

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Thu, 30 Aug 2018 20:32:29 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-covered-in-blood
Building 8 "It's in the Sand" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-its-in-the-sand Went to a concert. I took the blue line in. Wires lined the walls of the train tunnel. They were like veins. Maybe they were. They looked like veins. Looked organic. As the train moved it swayed back and forth. Motion like that always makes me sick if I focus on it.

Was alone in the car. Stayed that way most of the trip.

Train picked up speed. Got louder as it went. A harsh shrieking sound hurt my ears. Got louder and louder as the train got faster. Covered my ears. Just got louder. Like it was angry I didn't want to listen. I wanted to scream.

I did scream. It hurt so much. My throat was raw.

Felt thirsty. And the train got louder and louder. Was sure we would go off the rails. Was going to fast...

Train stopped and more people got on.

One with a suitcase sat down in front of me, placing their bag in the seat closest to the window.

Couldn't see beyond that.

Looked out the window. There was hair flipping in the wind. Long stringy hair. Assumed it was just a reflection. From the seat in front of me. But there was no one there with long stringy hair.

Whoever it was, clung to the outside of the train while in the tunnels.

Disappeared when we reached daylight...

Was a nice concert. Relaxed people. Was alone. Left early...

I took Loyd to the vet. He has gained ten pounds. Vet was confused. Said a cat of his type and his approximate age shouldn't be growing at this rate. Would be concerned about the excess weight, but for a cat his size he is still normal, even after all the gains.

Talked to Margaret on the phone. Said she was planning on heading home by the end of the week.

Said she missed me.

Been trying to make it right. To focus on what I did to make her go away. I dumped out my bottles again. Cheap stuff. Wasn't that hard. Used to drink more expensive things. Long ago. Neighbors probably won't mind if I don't drink when I am over. Never see them drink anyway...

I want to scream.

I have the radio on. Local station. Talking about the coming of autumn. Its supposed to be a bad winter this year. Lots of snow. Don't like thinking about it. It's too early to think about it.

Something about winter fills me with dread.

I used to love the holidays. They are still a ways off. But something about last Christmas has stuck with me. That thing with the long arms. Present wrapped in gold...

The scalpel. It wanted her to have it.

It was hot today. Spent some time outside, working on the garden.

My dad liked to garden.

I always kill the things I plant. But I guess there is always another chance. No one can really stop me from doing it each year. Don't know why I do it. Could just have plastic plants. Call it a day. Look like they are alive even if they aren't. But I prefer to try again. To plant again.

Margaret always likes the flowers. At least as long as they last.

She hates cut flowers.

Every time I try to plant a garden I make a mess.

Heat reminds me of the war. Reporting on it. Trying to anyway.

Was always so hot out there. Sand was everywhere.

Sort of heat that makes you dream. Seems I only started dreaming...remembering my dreams when I was out there.

First dream I could recall. A desert in a storm. Rain falling in heaps from a black sky. Could mistaken it for night in the city.

Black pyramids and a terribly large thing, lumbering forward. A black shape, fur dripping with rain. With a smile of blades...

The Lyld

Eyes burning in the dark.

Like a dead man's.

The rot is returning. Can smell it whenever I leave the house.

Not enough rain. The leafs are baking through. Leaves holes in their surfaces.

Lots of holes.

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Mon, 20 Aug 2018 18:18:29 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-its-in-the-sand
Building 8 "The Dead World" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-the-dead-world “I don't know how I got here...I've kept a record of how long...Three weeks...Probably a month... Didn't keep a record at first...Hard to tell time...It is always foggy...There is no one else here... I am completely alone...I don't need to eat...no need to sleep...skin is blackening...I want to go home...No life left...I need to bring more here...No longer alone...

It travels...those that can...escape...

Can't be stopped...just ran from...

Temporarily...

It always finds...ones that got away....No matter what time...No matter...the dimension...no escaping...

The Consumer...of Reality...”

Received this when listening to a receiver in my basement. Become fascinated with space.

Signals.

I have never found anything. Not until today. They seem genuinely alone. Frustrated. I felt so tired afterwards. I don't like to think about the dreams I had.

Makes my head hurt...

Margaret is at her parents still. We talk every night. She hasn't told me when she is coming back. I stopped asking. Seemed to be annoying her.

Not sure what to do to keep her around. Usually turns out fine.

Need to focus on finding him.

Loyd is getting bigger. Must be all the hunting he has been doing. Keeps bringing dead things to the back door. Slimy, oily things. Don't look natural, but don't seem to hurt him. I weighed him yesterday. He has gained five pounds. Doesn't seem like he is getting fat...just bigger.

The things he brings smell like battery acid and something else. Had to buy chemical bags. Corpses kept burning through the other ones.

Went over to my neighbors house. The one with the messed up face. Have to give his wife credit. Keeps flowers all over the house. Really pungent but nice. Maybe I should get a plant. Supposed to be good for you somehow.

Has a nice downstairs area. Pool table. Bar. I intended to do something with our basement. Have gotten distracted by things.

Nice bar. Old stools. Says he grabbed them from an estate sale. We sat around. Played pool.

Drank. I think I drank too much.

Been drinking too much.

Lights flicker a lot in his house. Says the wiring is crap. Don't remember the previous owner having that problem. We weren't really close.

Tried to bring Loyd with. Their daughter must not have a lot of friends looking like that. Loyd threw a fit. Starting hissing and clawing at them. Scratched the kid. Thought he got her good but didn't seem to bleed. Had to drop him off at home. They were understanding...

Good cooking. Woman says she is on a diet. Man said he already ate. That was fine.

Haven't talked about therapy in a while. I don't think I have gone in months.

Losing track of things. Just focused on him.

The Surgeon.

Work called. Said I needed to come in.

Long shift. No one talked about him. Tried to start a conversation. No one wanted to talk. Used to be good at this.

Been years. Lots of...changes.

They ask about Margaret. Don't like to tell them she is at her parents. Starting to feel weird. Been too long. They give me looks. Stupid looks. Like they are judging. See something I don't want to see. What the hell do they know.

She will come back. Always does.

One way or another.

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Fri, 27 Jul 2018 19:11:56 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-the-dead-world
Building 8 "Mold in the Walls" http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-mold-in-the-walls “It smells in here like mold and concrete. By law they have to keep this place cleaner than that, but that's only when they come around. Things have gotten better over the years, but you can't get rid of that smell. It's in the walls of this place. Everything is in the walls.

My old bunk mate used to complain about it all the time. You would think over time that he would get used to it. That any of us would. I suppose he was right to complain. Mold does terrible things to sick people. I am not sure if it was just the pneumonia that killed him, but an asylum is the sort of place that likes to help people along.

Have to make room for new arrivals.

They don't put anyone with me anymore. They say it is because I am good. I am even allowed a desk in here. The edges are sanded down of course. And I get to write all the letters I want.

They say that it is because I have been good, but I think they just don't trust me with people anymore. And I imagine they are running out of room.

In the summer the smell gets worse. Gets sour. The visitors, what few there are, tend to complain. But nothing is ever done. They just turn up the air conditioning and hope for the best. I suppose there are more honest options. Could have it cleaned out. The whole place. Search for the source of the smell. But if they did that then the place would get shut down.

They don't put people with me anymore.

Don't let me out much either. Except when inspectors come. Sometimes I consider making a scene. Making things hard for them. But really I can't think of how that would benefit me. I like this place. Gotten used to it. And within the walls I am safe. The walls made for a king.

I don't mind the isolation. Not really. Oh, I am sure it used to get to me. But I get to send out my letters, and that is enough for me. Play chess by mail with more than a few. Helps distract me from the whispers. Also allows me to remain in communication with my court.

Any day they will come and get me.

Even in here, they cannot rob me of my right. My right to rule. My subjects surround me. I imagine if they admitted to that, then I wouldn't be the only one in trouble. That make me happy.

It smells like mold and concrete, except in the summer when the walls warm up. My walls are a patchwork of old and new concrete. Broken down and put back together. I suggested they try bricks but it would be suspicious.

We are running out of room. The walls are almost full.

A guard here and a guard there. Maybe a patient who gets too close.

I can get anyone to come in here.

I just need to talk to them. And I have so many pencils. Not that I need them. And they wouldn't dare to take them away.

Or take away the members of my court. They surround me.

In the summer I get restless.

The walls smell like them.”

Tired. Work changed my hours. See Margaret less than before. Loyd is always up. Sometimes we sit outside, especially when the moon in out. There are a bunch of old trees lining the back of my property. When the wind blows through them there is the smell of decay. All that green and yet it is decay and earth I smell.

The Surgeon. Haven't seen him since the day at the beach. I have been looking for him. Been carrying a gun just in case. Took a while to get it. Lots of history. Friends in the department made it easier. Those familiar with what happened to Margaret.

What happened to Sarah.

Sometimes I walk alone at night, hoping to draw him out. Make my way to the factory. It's reckless. But I am doing something.

I have to be doing something.

Come home, and when I look past the glass door as I make sure I lock it, I can see my neighbor across the way. Has insomnia too. Not sure what the reason for it is.

Haven't had him or his wife over since the party. It's a shame. Lovely people. Far as I can tell.

I am tired.

Margaret wants to visit her parents again. Just wants to get away. A small break.

Haven't ever felt so distant from her.

I am thinking about the time we went to a barn sale. That small lantern she bought is still in the den. It was before she was attacked. Maybe after. It is hard to remember.

Hard to remember her old face.

Before the Surgeon.

Look at pictures.

The neighbors to the left of us haven't been heard from in weeks.

Smell of mold and decay.

We need some rain.

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Tue, 10 Jul 2018 15:10:41 +0000 http://sett.com/wellingtonstreet/building-8-mold-in-the-walls