A Blind Eye

WEP HalloweenI’ve joined forces with Sub Pub Music and artist, Jenny Vyas to create a creepy atmospheric journey through a classic childhood tale gone horribly awry (a story that spooked the pjs off me as a kid) for Yolanda Renee & Denise Covey’s fearful WEP Halloween challenge! Knock on our virtual door October 21st – 23rd, wager which fairytale we’ve twisted and you’ll walk away with a digital copy of Sub Pub Music’s latest haunting album, Cryogenesis, featuring dark & daring composers Mikkel Heimburger, Cody Still, Nick Road, Ciaran Birch, and Martin Hasseldam. Those who stray from the correct path may be detained indefinitely within the confines of our cryo chamber *cue evil laugh*.


SHUTTER by Jenny Vyas

Sub Pub Music – Cryogenesis – Cryogenesis – Cody Still

Mist, silent and sinister, spills through the chamber’s silver veins. A silent thief come to steal the warmth from our bones. It licks at our legs, hungry for heat. It slips past our lips, stripping our lungs of breath and smothering our screams…

“I see our mysterious guest has successfully thawed,” called a cheerful voice beside us. Memories scattered in the wake of a woman wrapped in a gleaming white gown. A haze of spun sugar clung to her shining flaxen waves.

We winced as her chair screeched a complaint against the stone floor. Our skin, wrapped in a warming sheet, shivered beneath a phantom blanket of ice.

Tegrel stirred.     

“Where are we?”

“Somewhere safe,” the woman smiled. She folded her arms atop the metal table that stretched between us. “I understand you’re a bit, foggy. An unavoidable side effect, I’m afraid. I do hope my inquiry won’t be too tortuous,” she purred, tilting her head with feigned concern. “I was alerted the instant your status improved. I wanted to handle your case, personally. I’ve no doubt our little chat shall be far more interesting than this evening’s stale corporate affair,” she winked. “Now then, let’s start with your name.”

We stared at the woman whose sweet scent and syrupy words oozed with something sinister. We tightened our grip on the pulsing fabric, its label catching on our fingers.

KRYOS Pharmaceuticals

ASCENT by Jenny Vyas

Sub Pub Music – Cryogenesis – Oscillation – Ciaran Birch

“KRYOS is growing desperate. Animal trials have failed,” father whispers to mother across the candlelit table. “The Pestis has infiltrated the world’s population. Humanity is a hair’s breadth away from extinction.”

“We were doomed the moment Monsainto gained control over the global food supply,” mother says, her fingers absently brushing the angry blemish along her collarbone, courtesy of the corporation’s more nefarious animal subjects. Our scars run deeper than most.   

The Pestis was rooted in the GM toxins that polluted the most vital elements to our survival. Our food. The regrettable, long-term, unintended side effect? A catastrophic inability to reproduce.

“KRYOS isn’t the solution,” mother squeezes his hand. “They’re nothing but a cannibalistic corporation eager to claim their share of the spoils. It’s up to us to turn the tide.”

Our lips curled with contempt.

“Who are you?” we demanded, dropping the offending blanket.

“Someone who needs answers.” She clenched her jaw. “Your undocumented cryopreservation is terribly troubling. KRYOS prides itself on following proper protocol. Why, one tiny slip on our side of things, and, well,” she leaned forward as if sharing a secret, “the consequences would be…severe.”

UNHINGED by Jenny Vyas

Sub Pub Music – Cryogenesis – Shield of Fate – Nick road

“That damnable woman!” father shouts. “Dr. Syngenta’s expedited testing of her vaccine. On children, no less,” he swallows back the horror. “I traced the unregistered KRYOS chambers to Monsainto’s classified facility in Creve Coeur. The woods bordering the lake are restricted to high-level corporate personnel. I won’t have access. We need someone on the inside. A child.”

Mother pulls her hand away, “No,” she says, shaking her head vehemently. “Shalen’s not ready. Tegler is too unpredictable! It’s too danger–”

“We don’t have a choice,” father cries.

“Imagine my surprise when a prohibited child popsicle conveniently turns up in one of my chambers during a witchhunt,” the woman seethed, her breath a cloying vine of venom. “Property that was to be disposed of after a rather distressing incident.”   

Tegrel bristled.

“We’re not your property!”

She rose from her chair, a glint of menace flashing in her crimson glare. “Oh, but you are. You and your gloriously untainted blood.”

F A C A D E

FACADE by Jenny Vyas

Father wraps his arms around us. “I’ve run dozens of blood tests. There’s no sign of Pestis. You’re safe.”

“What about Tegrel?” we whisper into his coat of wool and woodsmoke.

His embrace tightens. “Tegrel will protect you from the real monsters in this world.”

“Delightful news!” The woman beamed. “Your blood, my dear, may hold the key to our elusive cure,” she rubbed her palms together. “Available at an absorbent consumer cost, of course.”

BURROWS by Jenny Vyas

Sub Pub Music – Cryogenesis – Sentenced to death – Martin Hasseldam

“I’m not feeling particularly welcoming, Dr. Wood,” the blonde woman hisses, her gun wavering in the space between fire and flesh. “I assume you left a damaging trail for the authorities,” she spat. “No matter. Nothing an unfortunate forest fire can’t fix.”

A massive wolflike creature leaps from the corner, it’s snarling snout dripping with savage fury.

“Dorothea, NO!” Father shouts.

With a piercing howl, the beast tackles the wicked woman to the ground, jagged jaws tearing through blood and bone, until a flash of blue fire finds its mark in the heart of our mother.

Our eyes land on the spidery scars. Ragged and raised, they crept down the woman’s neck and crawled beneath her clean, white gown.

Vengeance, eager and persuasive, slithered through the seams of our thoughts. 

LET ME IN by Jenny Vyas

Sub Pub Music – Cryogenesis – we are all aliens – Mikkel Heimburger

Tegrel pushes past me with a guttural growl. Father spies us in the shadows of the cryo room. He shakes his head, wide eyes begging us to stay hidden. We hesitate a heartbeat too long. A corporate guard seizes our arms and tosses us into the nearest chamber. The steel mouth slams shut and swallows us whole. We throw ourselves against the glass, crying out for father, but he cannot come. He’s pinned to the ground, battered and broken and still…

“It hasn’t escaped my notice, your mention of others. I’m sure your siblings are worried sick. We should find them, don’t you think?” she asked, eyes glowing with greed. Another unsullied urchin would raise her profit margin through the roof.

“Tegrel stays close. He watches over us.”

“What a brave brother you have. There’s all manner of monsters lurking about. You’re both better off under my protection,” she nodded with approval, turning on her heels to head for the door. “I’ll notify my guards to collect him.”

“But he’s here,” we taunted. “In this room.”

The woman, creator of orphans, scavenger of souls, spun around, her triumphant smile slipping into a scowl. “What are you playing at?” she challenged.

Beneath the table, our fingers shifted into claws.

We leaned forward and whispered, “Tegrel protects us from monsters.”

© Samantha Redstreake Geary 2015

Word Count: 1000


Cryogenesis_cover


RUNNER UP BADGEHALLOWEENAlbum Winner!

Congrats to Djinnia for being the first to guess the origins of this tale: ‘Shalen and Tegler‘ are indeed ‘Hansel and Gretel‘! Many thanks to the WEP gang for joining our journey to the darkside!

 

 

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34 thoughts on “A Blind Eye

  1. Wow, Sam, this is a thrilling feast. Music, fantastic artwork and alternating POVs. I think I need to read it more than once to check the main themes. First I was thinking shades of Frankenstein, but that’s hardly a fairytale, then the forest and the children made me think of Hansel & Gretel.

    Thanks to the collaboration of Sub Pub Music and the creator of that brilliant artwork, Jenny Vyas, your team has indeed created a creepy atmospheric journey as promised.

    Thank you for your high-class entry to the WEP challenge Sam! Amazing! Certainly made my creep-o-meter shoot into the stratosphere!

    Denise 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thrilled you enjoyed this glimpse into the “dark side”, Denise! The original fairy tales were rooted in some seriously sinister soil, and we’ve plenty of nefarious ground to cover in this day and age:) Thank you for hosting such a FUN challenge!

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  2. What a twisted tale. I have no guess, but Hansel and Gretel sounds good as Djinnia and Denise said.  You have a lot going on in this story, is there more? Sounds like a great YA novel with Shalen and Tegler as avengers, or should I say avenger? Two personalities? Intriguing!

    I love the way you combine music and storytelling, so natural and the artistry so complimentary. Congratulations to you and Cody Still, Ciaran Birch, Nick Road, Martin Hasseldam, and Mikkel Heimburger and the amazing work of Jenny Vyas. This is simply astounding! Will the story accompany the album Cryogenesis?

    Thank you, Sam; this is a wonderful contribution to the WEP Halloween Challenge. Truly unique, but that’s you all the way through!
    Happy Halloween!

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    • Thank you, Yolanda, for hosting this freaky-fun event, and for your kind words! Jenny is a dear friend of mine who I would love to publish a graphic novel with in the future. Perhaps this one *wink*. I’m fortunate to be surrounded by musical brilliance–every new track is a possible story!

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    • Thank you! I had a general concept in mind when I first heard this album. I knew it would create the perfect creepy atmosphere for what I was going for. The hardest part was narrowing down to 5 tracks:)

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  3. The music adds so much to the reading of the story. I loved the Hansel and Gretel aspect to it. Twin personalities in one body? As others have said, this would make a fine novel. My Stetson’s off to you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Roland! The ‘two personality narrator’ was a fun challenge. Everyone has a dark side, some more visible than others. Toying with the idea of a graphic novel collaboration featuring this story line. Stranger things have happened:)

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    • Thank you, Nancy! I never watch TV *only movies on occasion* but it would be interesting to see what “fairy tale” adaptations are out there. I’ve several up my sleeve for a future anthology!

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  4. Wow! beyond speechless! Music and story together make for a riveting experience. I am going to stick my neck out and say it reminded me of a different fairy tale altogether – the woman in white and her flaxen hair and the ‘cryo’ in the title, the glass chamber, yup more of ‘The Snow Queen’ vibes here for me.

    Whichever fairy tale it is, it’s done masterfully!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Seriously creepy. I loved that you took fairy tales (sanitised for too long) back to their dark beginnings. I can see Hansel and Gretel elements, but don’t think it is the key. The snow queen perhaps? Though the shape shifting elements don’t gel…
    Whatever. I am very glad it is bright daylight…

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  6. Fabulous. Three things (music, story, art) working here to make your story a story like I dream to write. The tension is unbelievable. I was holding my breath and sitting on the edge of my seat. I don’t think it’s finished. A YA, perhaps? Magnificent and nightmarish job.

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  7. Unfortunately, I read this during a slow period at the office, so I couldn’t listen to any of the tracks. Guess this’ll need a re-read!

    Loved the shift in perspective and timeline. While KRYOS’s plans seemed like fairly generic evil corporation stuff, the interaction between the interrogator and the kids added a nice creepy undertone to the whole thing. Some of the finer details may have escaped me on that initial reading, so I guess I’ll have to give it another go when I’m home…with headphones this time!

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