“Chained in a cave…

Am I seeing the whole truth?

Or am I just catching glimpses of

shadows, dancing on the walls?

I want to know what there is…

Even if it’s forbidden…

Will you follow me to Hell?”


A lone figure stood on a hill, the centerpiece of an infinity of vast, sloping green earth. He was a dot among towering, steel windmills that cast forlorn shadows, stretching across the flowerless barrens. The man was an enigma, concealed beneath a solemn black jacket that hangs to his knees, the hood leaving his face muddled by shadow. Twenty yards behind him there was a freestanding, ornate wooden doorway, connected to no greater structure, no shelter. Carved deep into the red oak, encircling the doorknob, was the engraving of a snake, swallowing its tail.

A sudden gust zigzaged across the green, turning a quick the blades of the goliath windmills. The red door slowly swung open with a creak that was barely audible among the eerie, oppressive silence of the windmill-scarred plains. Another figure, indistinguishable from the former, stepped out of the arch’s shadow, and moved wordlessly to join its lookalike on the hill.

“You’ve been to that (town), haven’t you?” the first figure spoke in a toneless, emotionless voice that was nowhere, and yet everywhere at once.


“You have no voice?”


“Or perhaps, you simply prefer not to speak?”


“Have it your way. It makes no difference to me. In any case, you’ve been (there). I can sense it. Did they see you?”


“Their parents will no doubt tell them that they were dreaming. In time, those children will do the same. No one will recognize our existence, you know.”


“What was that?”

“… (even so) …”

The scene transitioned to a lonely beach, waves softly coming and going. It was night. The stars were dancing. A woman’s voice, soft, sweet, floated over the air.

“Can you see stories in the stars, Dares?”




About the author


  • The Esoteric Madman


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