The Graveyard

The Lair Of Gary James

AW Cross-Genres POV Blog Chain

Posted by BigWords on February 12, 2011

I know I am meant to provide a complete and nourishing intellectual meal for this particular challenge, but the rigors of writing in omniscient seems to be getting the better of me. Go have a look at the last post to see the ways in which even a Word War could not bring forth the Muse, then read on…

Quite a time ago, though not so long as to be lost in the murk of human memory, and in a land which isn’t as far as some would have you believe, a small group of men set forth on an adventure which I shall regale you with. The reasons for their excursion into the strange hills and valleys of Ossuary isn’t important, nor is it entirely true, so I will merely state that their mission was of great importance to them, but of little importance to anyone else. Such is the way with ventures as theirs, many curious and over-eager tongues set about telling tales almost immediately upon news of their departure. These tales tend to arise around men of singular purpose, and retelling them here would be of disservice to those men.

Oh, delicious fate weaved upon Lachesis’ thread, the tale which I will tell should be told in more decadent a setting, and with drinks for all. Such a setting cannot be hastily arranged, so this, I am sorry to say, will have to suffice.

For reasons which will become clear, I will refrain from stating outright the location of this fabulous fable, and the identities of those involved will be obfuscated somewhat. Such authorial intrusion will be minimal, and for the benefit of all who peruse this account. Apologies must be made in advance to the students of Abdul Alhazred, for there are elements herein which bastardize his works. Others, of lesser reading, may notice elements drawn from folklore and myth, though such commonalities can be attributed to the nature of the land in which my tale takes place, and not to laziness nor queer humor.

There are ways to begin which would explain the motives of those involves, and which would amuse the more puerile interests of my audience, though I will start with the dying words of the man I shall be calling Waldemar –

Here There Be Dragons

It should be noted that the esteemed Spaniard was not noted for hyperbole. I state this fact in the hope you will not think ill of him for such a statement, but indulge the notion – for a while, at least – that there are places where the laws governing biology are rather less stringent than elsewhere. This isle of the dead, the land to which he sailed, was of a lost archipelago rediscovered through equal parts luck and misfortune. A few people have suggested, in their fictions grafted around the bones of his venture, that old Waldemar was a legendary hero who slayed great beasts and led his men into the heart of darkness. Lies. All of them. The truth about Waldemar is much more mundane, but is no less amazing for such a fact.

Whispering grass, of which songs have been sung, grows here in wild abandon. Stretching along the coast, it is the siren song which drew the attention of those aboard The Bastion Of Hope. In mentioning this fine vessel it becomes clear that there is something of a necessity in pointing out that it was originally a great deal smaller than people would have you believe. Built by common means, and of necessity, it was hardly to be considered the leviathan of subsequent telling. There is a painting of the ship which hangs in the basement of the British Library now, a sheet hung over it to quash the curse it is reputed to have. The frame is was carved from the carcass of the ship, cut from Yggdrasil more splendid than any other wood…

It is said that, there on the shore, the sight of the faraway hills incited the men to rush headstrong into the interior of the island, but it was far from the mad dash of legend. A firm and capable leader, Waldemar had planned every step of the journey as best he could under the circumstances, and for the unknown region had prepared several contingencies for the group to adhere to. Yes, there were flaws in his plan, but no great adventure is without uncertainty. It isn’t for me to point out where he went wrong just yet, for these things will become apparent in the full course of time.

Where was I? Ah, yes. The grasslands. Setting forth through the waist-high barrier was no easy matter, and on more than one occasion the men were rooted to the spot in fear as the hushed intonations of doom tugged at their mind. A distance of no more nor less than three rods took the better part of the day. You might wonder at how such experienced men were so swayed that their progress was made difficult, but if you have not experienced firsthand the terrors of the whispering grass, you ought not cast remark on men brave enough to traverse a field of the damnable stuff. I once had a salad where it was served in a side-dish – even cut from their roots, they refuse to be silenced.

I have no idea why this isn’t working for me, but I hope you aren’t too disappointed with such an abysmal failure on my part this month. Two days work is above, and if I spend any longer on one piece I am sure to end up in a padded cell, banging my head against the wall and muttering about “the coming of the master.” You really don’t want that to happen, do you?


4 Responses to “AW Cross-Genres POV Blog Chain”

  1. Carol said

    I actually enjoyed this piece. It put me in mind of the Golden Age of Science Fiction – A. Merritt, Edgar Rice Burroughs, L. Sprague de Camp . . .

  2. bigwords88 said

    I’ve been reading a lot of old short stories at the moment. I’m beginning to realize that the way Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov churned out their work for a particular market is a LOT harder than they made it seem to appear, especially when real life keeps getting in the way…

    And my thanks for being so polite about this fragment. 😀

  3. Squeaky said

    aw… i was rather enjoying the rolling intonation, actually… 🙂

  4. bigwords88 said

    If I followed through on the material as it was opening up, this could easily have ran to novella length – minimizing the pain is (in this instance) the best thing for everyone. The POV doesn’t seem to favor short and sharp pieces for me, but I’m not going to abandon the ideas this experiment gave me.

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