Do you need, desire or crave a new challenge? Are you open to sharing your dark side? Then read on.
Do you have a dark side?
Or, think you may have one. Or indeed worry that you might have one. Or, for that matter, worry that you don’t and would like one? If so, join me here each week for dark | side | thursday.
Over a period of 52 weeks, I am writing a story. A dark story that will unfold as the weeks pass. Each Thursday, at 13:00 UTC, I will post a new chapter. Each chapter will be exactly 500 words long, and will be accompanied by a photograph. You can catch up on the story so far by clicking here on dark | side | thursday
Share your dark side?
I invite you to join me either by writing your own dark story, week by week, or, if that is too much, by dropping by, now and then, perhaps when the mood suits you or, perhaps, when it doesn’t, and by sharing a photograph, poem or a suitably dark piece of prose. To cross over to dark | side | thursday create your post, tag it dark side thursday and link to it by clicking on the dark | side | thursday badge below, where you can also find all the contributions so far. Or you can simply share your link in the comments section of my weekly post. And, should the mood take you, you can add the badge to your post.
dark | side | thursday | fortyeight
He tipped the glass and took its contents in one fierce swallow.
His stomach burned.
The shack was empty. It had one room. The walls, floor and ceiling were fashioned from old faded driftwood. At the centre of the room a plain wooden desk had been placed facing a full length plate glass window. He pulled back the solitary high backed wooden chair and sat down at the desk, facing the window.
His leather bound journal, and a freshly sharpened pencil, lay in front of him.
He had no more idea how they had come to be there than he had about anything else.
He did not pick up the pencil. He sat there, the salt laden air unmoving on that dark moonless night. He watched the waves as they rolled in across the bay, waves breaking only a few steps away from the shack.
He stood, refilled his glass, returned to the table, sat and opened his leather journal. He noticed that it was almost full of closely written text and pencil illustrations, diagrams and lists. He had not the slightest recollection of making those entries. The handwriting was his. Of that, there was no doubt.
He turned to the first page and began to read.
After reading the first five pages he stood again, refilled his glass walked to the window. It was still outside, no wind, only the waves rolling in with the tide. He pressed his fingers against the glass and simply stood there for a while, watching.
Returning to the desk, he continued to read, he turned each page methodically, he did not pause, did not back track to check a point, nor rush forward to read ahead. Simply kept turning the pages.
Twice more he rose to refill his glass and, as the first rays of light began to show on the horizon, as the ball of the sun began to rise from the sea, he came to the end of the journal. He took the leather strap and bound it tightly.
He opened his black backpack and found what he wanted. A plain gun metal coloured zippo lighter. It had been recently filled, the wick was new. It was ready. He laid it on the table.
He poured one last glass, this time from a different bottle, and this time he did not drink from it. He placed the journal at the centre of the table. He pushed the seat under the table, exactly at the mid point, facing the window.
He took the glass and tipped its contents over the leather journal.
He picked up the zippo, flicked it open and watched the flame for a moment before he set light to the journal. Once he was sure it was set he poured the remains of the bottle over the table and the chair.
He walked out, threw the zippo back through the open door of the wooden shack.
The sun rose, furious flames roared, thick smoke rose.
A pillar, above the waves.
The portal to dark | side | thursday opened on the twenty first day of may in the year twenty hundred and fifteen and will remain open for fifty two weeks.
fortyeight | fiftytwo