You can now follow me on Instagram

You can now follow me on Instagram

That’s right, I’m now on Instagram! If you want to see more miniature photography you can follow me on my Instagram BjornStormcast.

I’ve even made my new profile artwork for my Intagram.

It’s very early days but I’m sure it’ll grow just like the blog has.

Until next time,

-Bjorn

Nigel

This is a reference to a meme on the Fly on The Wall Podcast instagram. I decided to draw Nigel because I was bored being stuck in isolation. At least Luke can now create more memes of Nigel.

Nigel is the hero we never asked for, but deserved in our time of need.

Until next time,

-Bjorn

Roboute Guilliman, art project

You thought I would forget Lorgar’s arch nemesis? Well, I did just that earlier than expected, it’s a nice picture that I’ll be using as my new profile picture.

At first I wanted to draw Rogal Dorn, but I found the drawing to be less like Dorn and more like Guilliman. So I went for a stoic Guilliman in uniform. Can you guess which famous actor I’ve picked as a visual reference for drawing Roboute?

That’s all for today, until next time,

-Bjorn

Lorgar, Bearer of the Word: Art project

The other day I wanted to do some drawing, so I got out my sketchbook out and started planning what I wanted to draw. After my test drawing of Perturabo using a reference photo impressed me, I wanted to do something similar for this drawing.

I wanted to draw Lorgar, inspired by ADB Horus Heresy book, Betrayer, which I finished reading a few days ago. Hating Lorgar more than ever, I wanted to create a very powerful, wise, prideful and twisted imagery of the Primarch.

To start off, I went and searched for a reference image of who I wanted to base the XVIIth Primarch on. When I read Lorgar’s words, I imagine Richard E Grant playing as the character for his soft high gothic voice, with a twist of sharpness when the monster within is unleashed.

What better reference picture than one of Richards roles that I first saw him in when I was a kid, The little Vampire. I can’t show the image on here, but it’s a good reference picture of him smiling sinisterly with his Vampire costume and makeup. I’ve also got some reference photos of Lorgar, one from his Primarch book and another one in full chaos mode (I think it’s the same artist who did Chapter Master Valrak’s YouTube profile picture?).

Rather than using a pencil, I used a red pencil when outlining and shading the portrait, something I haven’t tried out before until now. As they say in Art College, try something new and out of your comfort zone.

Using a red pencil/crayon, I’ve noticed it was a lot more smoother to shade the picture. With a chalk tip/graphite pencil I tend to get too rough on the shading and outlining.
Once the sketch is complete, I did some photo editing to make it sharper, brighter and filtered in B&W. But wait, the face doesn’t look right…….I keep thinking I’ve accidentally drawn Gav Thorpe, despite the fact I’ve used a reference photo of Richard E Grant.

Now for the digital art stage! With the photo ready, importing it into Procreate art app to be put through layers of colour and editing. I tend to add separate layers for different areas like for example Skin, eyes, armour, background, added effects and tonal change.

Already Lorgar looks as bright as a neutron star about to explode, just like Monarchia……..
He’s even got a nice scar left by Corax after their clash on Istvaan V, a mark of prowess or shame, who could say?

After the painting stages are done, it’s back to the photo editing with light balance and another filter. We need to make Lorgar look his best, so a really dark and morbid tone should suit his ‘killing smile’.

Some may not like it too dark, me, for this art subject in particular, it’s justifiable. #RIPArgalTal #FErebus

Finally, I wanted to add one final effect before it goes into its final piece stage. Adding some nebula glow to represent the almost otherworldly aspect to Lorgar’s deep descent into Chaos.

With that done, what’s the message in my art work and what inspired me.

Artwork’s message and meaning

Art is subject and everyone has their take on the subject in question, so don’t let my words be the final judgment on your views.

I wanted the picture to represent Lorgar as the serpent, the smiling demigod who’s pulling the threads of many plans and religious founding during his zealous crusade in the Horus Heresy. I’ve noticed in many official and fan artworks how Lorgar doesn’t smile, despite the fact that he smiles a little bit too much.

Once, he was the runt of the herd whom no one respected or even acknowledged, even to his own brothers of demigods. But after all the events that transpired leading up towards the Heresy, we get to see Lorgar at the height of his power, and his greatest weaknesses open to be exploited by the Chaos Pantheon.

My artwork was set with one goal in mind for my target audience, and that is for them to hate it. Why? Because what your seeing is no mere victim or a misguided demigod seeking the truth, what your seeing is the truth. Chaos corrupts all it touches, even best intentions for good can be set for a pathway to damnation. Lorgar is an example of someone who plays the victim and expects people to see his point of view because he saw the “truth”, how the Emperor is nothing but a false god along with the Imperium that he created.

But that’s his excuse. He knew the cost of his actions when he sent Argal Tal and his chapter into hells gate, he knew what the Heresy would result in, he knew Guilliman would seek his head for the burning of Calth as he was about to play victim to the XIIIth Primarch. He means good intentions, but only to himself, if he ever cared for his sons and the rest of humanity, he would’ve searched deep within himself and be more self assertive. But because he needs to worship something greater than himself, he can never question himself.

Even a demigod like Lorgar can be manipulated by mortals like Erebus and Kor Pharon, who use Lorgar to their own agendas because he cannot see his own faults to know he’s being used. Or are we the reader being fooled? Lorgar for all we know is playing victim to his own sons, letting them think he’s too dependable on others to be guided. But in truth, he’s using them in such a way where he can see what their motives are, who’s really the ally and enemy within.

My artwork in my opinion is about the truth of who we are, not the universal truth. The truth that Lorgar seeks is not the masters we must follow, but it is the actions we make that define our lives and those we affect. Lorgar is so hellbent of finding the truth of real gods to pray and grovel over to because he wants no responsibility for himself. Why be the master of your own destiny when gods can be both a source of power, religious guidance and an excusable diversion for your own sins (blame the gods for my actions).

One day the gods will tire of Lorgar and find a new plaything. On that day he will truly know the meaning of guilt and despair far more crushingly than the burning of Monarchia

Inspiration

My inspirations for this piece as mentioned above are Richard E Grant as an actor/ voice actor I’d imagine would play as Lorgar. imagery of GW IP artwork of Lorgar and fan artwork of Lorgar.

For reading inspiration from Black Library includes Gav Thorpe for Lorgar’s Primarch book, Anthony Reynolds for The Purge and Scion of the Storm and ADB for The First Heretic, Betrayer and short stories relating to Lorgar.

Finally, artist inspirations are Francis Bacon, Neil Roberts and Paul Dainton.

That is all for today. I hope you have enjoyed this post, and if your have any suggestions on which Primarch I should do next, post a comment in this post on who you’d like to nominate for me to ruin.

Until next time,

-Bjorn

Fan fiction Fly on the Wall Podcast Post Apocalyptic Saga link post

I’ve decided to make a post to link all of my Post Apocalyptic saga fan fiction posts, based on The Fly on the Wall Podcast series hosted by Luke and Waz, into an all in one link post. This will be updated with each new fan fiction post published on the blog, links below are in chronological order.

_____

Update (5/4/20): I’m currently editing part 5 to make sure it reads and visually appeals without being too fan fiction-y and too silly. As a halfway point for the entire fan fiction story, I want to make sure it ties plot threads that I’ve been plotting through the series.

Mainly, I want to set the halfway point where there’s a clear goal and destination, not that the characters, background and story up to this point has been established. It’s all to easy to get too sidetracked with ideas and creative overloads, dragging the story for too long and too overly ambitious for the plot I originally had in mind.

So once part 5 is out, everyone will be on track and happy to know that the filler and exposition parts are done.

Oh, and part 5 will be dropping some big stuff about the post apocalypse. Stay tuned!

___________

Posts below are art posts relating to the fan fiction.

I’ve got some suggestions for listening to music whilst reading these stories, as it’s immersive to the story that’ll make the experience much more enjoyable. These are my personal favourites when I’m writing these fan fiction stories, I hope you’ll enjoy them too!

  • Mitch Murder, Hardwired album
  • Fallout 1 and 2 and 3 OST
  • Wasteland 2 by Mark Morgan
  • Sanctum, Metatron Omega
  • Impact Winter, Mitch Murder
  • Death Stranding, Ludvig Forssell

Lastly I’m grateful to Luke and Waz for letting me do this fan fiction project, despite how much I keep posting about my work I’m very thankful for the guys positive feedback and enjoyment of my work.

You can find the Fly on the Wall Podcast on your preferred podcast app (might not be on all podcast apps), Twitter and Instagram.

Here’s a link to their Twitter site and give their podcast a listen!

https://mobile.twitter.com/flyonthewallpo1

If the link doesn’t work, just type in FlyOnTheWallPo1 on Twitter.

Thanks for reading this post and I hope you’ll enjoy the fan fiction stories (or not).

-Bjorn

Going Primal

Ah another toy salvaged from…..not my toy box this time, but at a carboot sale months back. I saw this at a toy stall in the carboot indoor market that was in a spinning case for many months. I just had to get it!

Looking pretty worn out with missing parts (his transmetal ape head is missing sadly, so no animal mode for this post), this is Optimus Primal, a Maximal who leads his bots to fight against the evil Predecons led by Megaton (namesake descendent) on planet Earth in the past. Because Earth was quite high on energon radiation, the bots took forms of animals to protect themselves from excess overloading.

Anyways you didn’t come here for a 1990’s history lesson, your here for my painting work! Before that, check out some unintentional equipment attachments that primal can carry! I am Megtron! ‘Monkey noises’

Super-primal-power-force-combine-maximal-transform!!!

Now, here’s what I’ve done with the toy after painting it.I’ve used a brown shade to run through the recess areas, to make them stand out along with details that were not visible. Then I drybrushed his grey parts in light silver to bring out the raised areas, making it appear like real metallic arms.

For the purple areas, I’ve used a purple shade to darken the areas and Male the fur recesses more visible. The eyes were painted in layers from orange to white, similar to how his eyes glowed in the animation.

Did you know he can use a hover board as well?

For the metallic blue I just used a blue glaze, as the metal was worn near the edges of the recess lines.

Another toy painted!

How many more can a ruin?

I think I’ll go back to the 80’s and pluck a toy from the range. G1 Galvatron anyone?

-Bjorn

The road to disappointment

This was written back during my last day at P16, the day I’d finally leave school and set off towards my new life and aspirations to become an artist as a career. Years of pressure, being bullied and constant issues with the conforming brainwashing of school would be all behind me. A fresh start in life.

I didn’t want to be a famous artist, I wanted to become an artist and use my talents in the art industry. I’m a background person, I hate the limelight and noise, I wanted to work on my passion to create and build my artistic talents. But school pushed this concept of a famous artist in my mind, they wanted to plant a seed and make me become this ‘famous artist’, so when I come back they’ll have the press and reputation. A tool like many others who could be brainwashed to think they’re special, when in reality the outside world only sees you as a statistic number.

All I ever wanted to be was an artist, nothing more. When I left, I thought I’d finally discover myself and my potential. I didn’t want to become an art teacher as I’m not a social person, I don’t have the skills and ability to be at the front to demonstrate and talk. I prefer being in the background with like minded people working on tasks in an office or studio.

Self employment was going to be my goal like free lance art, but I had to leave that goal as doing self employments work is a nightmare from what I’ve been told. I couldn’t run a business myself as I’m not capable of setting one up and being responsible for multitasking.

Schools out, college I go. Nothing can go wrong, right?

But, the reality was quite bleaker and punishing for me when College turned me down. They didn’t accept me to take on a Level 2 Art and Design course work because I didn’t have the right grades. Despite the amount of work and effort I’ve made to get this far in that time.

Originally I was going to be in the school of access for art and met the tutor there for a meeting, but I was told I was too good for that, but there was no middle ground. I had nowhere to go, I was too good and too under graded to attend. Oh, and the funniest thing was, my paper work was lost by college, which had my personal details on it. The staff lost it, and to this day it was never found……..

After a few weeks I was meeting one of the tutors at the art college where I showed my work off, I was accepted to attend. My dreams nearly in tatters only saved by someone who wanted to see my work.

But during my first year of college I noticed that many who attended didn’t give a damn about the course. They treated it as a social corner, gossiping and hardly doing any work. These were accepted and they showed no respect. People like me who really wanted to work and attend the course were pushed aside for those with ‘grades’ or met the tick marks. I thought of the sick reality that many others in the position like me who were never accepted and didn’t get that opportunity like I did to join. Talented people who might have achieved great things at college, showing the high ups how wrong they were in their judgment.

At college the whole ‘famous artist’ talk was still hammered into me, I would keep saying I wanted to be in the art industry and not be a famous artist. But it kept coming despite my views being clear.

Then in October/ November time I had the news broken to me that my school had made an error, they said I’d passed my Level 2 English after my test a few months ago, but there was an error in the marking. I was absolutely livid. Failure after failure just seems to be my education at that point, and what was worse was that my school advised that I didn’t need to let college know. However, this would make me a fraud, and my school wouldn’t want to admit what they said if college knew about that advice. So after letting college know about the situation they were more than happy to let me continue doing my GCSE English.

By the end of the course I’d achieve a merit grade and an award for the best artwork in the group. I proved to the establishment that I wasn’t messing around, I wanted this to be proof that even someone with lower grades, diagnosed with Autism, and put my head down and work could defy the odds. I wanted the establishment to know I was the crazy bastard that would prove them wrong and make them embarrassed for their error in judgment.

The next two years were punishing for me as I had to deal with more complications with management, support for my needs were not met and my mental health was so bad that I had two mental breakdowns. I had my highs and lows, no friends but the work load was on schedule.

On the week before my hand in date for my FMP level 3 ED, my dog, Leo sadly had to be put down. On my day of handing in my work early, I gave my work in and left quietly and didn’t say goodbye to my group.

I achieved a merit grade with two criteria’s being distinction grade. I was very pleased with the outcome, I wanted to leave college and find place that can offer me work in art.

I found a place that could help, who have the support and guidance for getting me into work. They’ve said they could get me a job in art and support my education.

——

Today looking back on all that work, the years of education, the stress, depression, anxiety, mental breakdowns and fighting the odds, I wonder if it was all worth it in the end. I’m not a bubble dreamer, I know life is hard and not everyone can work towards their dream work. But I worked hard to get the grades I needed to find work in art related areas, nothing fancy nor high paid.

But I’ve been lied to, used, manipulated and treated with disrespect by the British education. There was nothing in the end, only false promises and being used to help the school, college and other places get a good rep and future relations.

I’m very glad that I didn’t go to uni, if I went there and they had the same issues like school and college, and the tuition fee on top of that, I’d probably go crazy. I was recommended that I should go to uni, but I didn’t want to go down that route.

Education is still worth going to, I wouldn’t get rid of it based on what I’ve said in this post. Despite my issues there were good things to be said. My maths tutor at college was one of the best I’ve ever had, he got me close to passing my FS level 2. Art course was good, I got to really explore my potential and how my art work can be developed and themed using the skills and techniques I’ve learnt during my time at college.

But education is severely in need of reforming and improved for the next generation. Being diagnosed with Autism, it’s been rough going through education with the amount of problems I had to deal with. Even now there’s news about schools being under scrutiny for not providing support nor guidance to help those with a disability to find work.

Where I am now in education is the final phase, the time where I’ve only got a few chances left of getting my maths and English achieved.

If there’s an advice I’d give myself back when I was starting my art pathway in year 9, I’d say leave it and not lot the establishment fill my mind with bs. Treat art as a hobby rather than a job, and focus on areas of employment that could take me on and provide support for my needs. Even if I’m only useful at art, I could’ve grown some other skills that don’t require face to face jobs like customer service, guide and so on.

If schools applied reality rather than branding people as ‘special’ or giving terrible advice that they haven’t researched on, then things would’ve been much more straightforward. Having aspirations and dreams aren’t to be put aside and forgotten, without such things life would be dull and uninspiring. It’s these motivational tools that push us to our best and try harder to achieve our goals, even if they may never be achieved.

However, overusing these things, especially in special needs schools have dire consequences for students in their education and beyond. These consequence that schools won’t admit being in the wrong, as I’ve seen many times before where they try to excuse and avoid reasonable criticism.

It’s like what many students I’m learning with have said, ‘they don’t care about our education nor career, they just want students for the money and rep’.

-Bjorn

Oh Alister, Asylum short story

Drip

Drip, drip

Drip, drip, drip

“SPOOOOGGGEE!!!!”

“For god sake Luke!!! You ruined the tension, the silent atmosphere of the unknown with only the sound of droplets being heard! Why must you ruin the moment, the tension was almost palpable!!!! My show was going so well until you F it up! Go and sod off back to your corner, leave me alone I’m tacking a sh!t now!!!! Alister Huckleberry was once a celebrated entertainer back in his day, a bingo caller from Yorkshire who was in his mid 40’s with charming looks and clothing fashion that could make your nan sink down below. That was until he was officially declared insane by the medical society of bad acting (MSoBA), and was sent to the outback of Australia in a asylum called ‘Ken’s den’. This is where your criminally insane bad entertainers go…….

Alister wanted to ascend to heaven and be done with this hell he was trapped in, spending 11 years for crimes including bad comedy, terrible one liners and fake tan so bad that he looked like he smothered himself in tangy cheese crisps. His last show was so bad that all the OAP’s dropped dead from the boredom with jam sandwiches all over the the room, a sign of a bad actor at work!

Another day at the asylum, another bad actor strikes again. The asylum for bad entertainers and performers carries on its usual routine as patients go on the road to becoming better entertainers, to walk out into society to be a better person. They may go on to become famous, or even legendary talents in the history books. Some however tend to leave the profession for good, the asylum will always be on their mind whenever they see a vacant microphone or a lonely guitar that needs twanging.

But for Luke, he’d spooge everybody’s chance just for his own amusement. He’s been doing this for five years now, ever since he was locked up for crime against the entertainment code. His unnecessary vulgar comedy and social media posts of acquired taste had marked him as a wanted mad man. He and the Spooge crew (his gang of affiliates) were a menace to society and needed to be locked up! The Governor of the asylum sent a bounty out on Luke and his crew worth around £100,000. Mr Fletcher was adamant that these criminals will be found and sent to his asylum to be reformed.

After many weeks of searching and tracing the whereabouts of the Spooge crew, the coppers finally found the gang when they saw their van at a fast food restaurant. A high speed chase was on! Luke was on the wheel, Waz on the guns, Glenn polishing his spear, Keith was drunk, naked man shouted vulgar nonsense at the coppers and the Tons (Dexton, Sexton and Flexton) were shooting out from the sides of the van. The Spooge crew fled to another part of the country as the coppers chased them through main roads and off road lanes. Waz had in total punctured 6 police cars, shot and overturned 5 police cars, caused minor injury wounds by 11 and killed no one. His heavy machine gun was nearly out of juice and he needed more ammunition in order to get rid of the rest. That’s when naked guy suggested a do or die attempt at jumping over a canyon, he was a genius when he was low on psychedelic substances.

The coppers finally caught Luke, Waz, naked man and other criminal scum in an abandoned industrial mining site. Their van got wrecked by a demolition ball that swung into the van as it nearly made the jump over a canyon.

Even though the game was up and each one of the crew were sentenced to ten years in the asylum, like Evel Kenival, Luke would do more and more extreme acts of bravery and insanity, he’d escaped along with his gang three times so far. Their greatest escape was the second attempt when Waz got a jackhammer from the arsehole of a smuggling inmate. How he was able to stuff it in his hole is anyone’s guess, but Waz used this to break free and his friends too who were down the row from him. Did the guards get killed? No, they laughed to death!

They made it all the way up to the Governors office and tried to create an armed siege. They wanted a deal where they go free with a van to get away in. When they had a deal and drove off they were pursued by a dark ominous van, immediately they found out that their petrol was low. So close to freedom, yet so far away when the asylum released its most dangerous and reliable asset to deal with the Spooge crew. Taken out of his cryo frozen state in a frozen isolation chamber, Carry On legend, Sydney was back!

The Spooge crew were weak against this old mans prowess as he danced and singed his ditty tune, he joked and gave his memorable one liners. The crew were laughing to death as their hearts were crushed by the weight of the power of humour, British humour at it’s most destructive state. It was only by sheer luck that Sydney died on the spot as he chocked from years of being on ice, his comeback came too soon. He laid there on the floor smiling from beyond the grave.

It was decided that the Spooge crew needed to be separated into groups of two, lest the madness consume the entire asylum by a gang of crazy pranksters.

Alister has seen and heard all of this in his time behind bars in the asylum. Unlucky for him his roommate was a lunatic who broke him in just 2 hours of being together.

Oh Alister.

_________

It was nighttime and everyone was in their isolation cells, for Alister, his isolation became a shared room. Luke was in the corner rocking back and forth in the shadow, hardly spoke a word in the last few hours. This was odd, Luke would usually be writing some vulgar poem that he’d tell Alister about, or drawing childish pictures in crayons of his adventures. The canyon jump was his favourite story.

Alister heard the canyon jump so many times now that he could recite it in all its childish hallmark. Strangely the story reminded him of something long ago, the canyon had something close to him once, a vague fuzzy memory that he couldn’t catch no matter how hard he tried.

It was 11pm and the inmates were asleep, well not all of them, strange noises echo down the hallway at night like screams and almost demonic shouts and laughter. Men in security gear were escorting clowns on trolleys with jam smeared on their mouths. He could sometimes see doctors walking across his jail door to administer injections to inmates. Supposedly it was to help clear their minds of the painful memories they had. Well Alister’s bad entertainment memories were still intact and the injections didn’t do a thing. But he did get a fuzzy headache when he tried to remember vague things at the back of his mind…..

Luke stopped rocking and froze, Alister looked over to see Luke curling still. He was feeling a slight twinge of worry that the lad was broken by the madness of this wretched place, it finally got to him. He got up and walked just a few paces towards Luke and sighed. “Oi, lad, ya allwit? Ya seem a little off it tonight?”.

No sound came from Luke. Alister got the impression that Luke was being antisocial and wanted to be left alone. Although Alister hated this man for driving him mad from the constant pranks, he could at least spare some understanding for people who just became complete emotional wrecks like him. He broke down once in his life during a time of stress and pressure, on the edge of losing his sanity when everything collapsed on him. Wait, since when did Alister broke down? His head was getting fuzzy again, he swore he just remembered having a memory of breaking down?

________

Alister was asleep dreaming of horrible things that plagued his dreams, he was in debt, his wife was killed whilst gliding over a canyon and he had a mental breakdown at his local bingo show. He felt the gears in his mind break and crunch as reality forced him down towards a complete emotional collapse. The elderly were laughing and scorning him for his mental breakdown, the bad entertainer proved to be a complete failure at his job. They hated him, loathed his existence as a little man who had no success, his wife dead, his finance in ruin and he had news broken to him that he was going to be sacked tomorrow from the bingo hall. It all cascades on him in the end as his mental health finally gave way.

All Alister could do was fall onto the microphone stand and smack his head constantly until blood appeared on his bludgeoned face. Then several minutes later the laughter ceased and a cold silence took over the hall, Alister was all alone covered in the red essence of human blood.

Drip

Drip, drip

Drip, drip, drip

‘………………’

The End

Fly on the Wall post apocalyptic saga fan fiction series part 3: Time and the underworlds embrace

London, East End, est 1950/1960

On the streets in the East end of London, in a pact narrow rows of brick houses in Bethnal Green, a young man was watching outside through his window. Looking down at the street from his house, where people were going about their daily lives on a cool autumn morning. He opened his windows to let the breeze in like a fresh draft, but not the freshest and cleanest of air. Here it was full of smoke from the chimneys from coal fires, clogging the air in a smokey line of heavy black fog. But the man didn’t care as this was his home that he grew up all his life, he wouldn’t change it any other way.

Bethnal Green was a place like no other for it was where The Firm, the gang led by Kray Twins once ruled the streets, and the site of one of Jack the Rippers routes to escape his acts of murder. But life wasn’t all doom and gloom for the Community was strong, neighbours knew one another and would help each other when times were tough. Fathers went to work in the working class world, wives would look after the children and do their daily routines, some even worked in market stalls selling food.

The young man got his music player out which he fondly enjoyed listening to, music inspired him to draw, think and feel the music playing on his old 78. He put his favourite song in the 78 player and started playing the song, the sound was booming out of his windows as the music traveled down the narrow street like an amplified stage show. The drums and beat could be heard straight down the street bouncing around and echoing from the walls.

Somewhere nearby in a disused vegetable pile down the back of a stable house, rats were eating raw vegetables in this graveyard of dead veg. Their ears detected the booming music and hurried back into the shadows. Some skulked around ruins of bombed out houses that still stood after the Second World War. Overgrown, abandoned and deteriorating from years of neglect, these ruins provided the rats a comfortable nest to breed and expand around the East End.

Meanwhile back on the narrow street, people heard the music and saw the young man with his music player as the source of the loud noise. They danced and smiled at the music that was playing. It was a calm but catchy song that had a great drum and piano combination. The song that was playing was called Blueberry Hills.

Blinking his eyes open as if he awoke from a terrible dream, Luke was standing in amongst the crowed looking up at the young man. The man looked down at him with a charming smile as if he knew Luke. Suddenly he stood up on the windows edge, spreading his arms out wide and jumped down. He fell head down towards the cobbles, his sudden act shocked Luke by the sight of this mans death wish. Instead of cracking his neck from a height of 16ft or more high, he dropped into a pool of dark liquid that appeared out of nowhere, exactly where the man would’ve killed himself. It saved his fall as he fell onto the pool that was only a few centimetres high, but he vanished into its thick dark underworld.

The crowd froze with no concern for what just happened to the man, they stood still smiling in an oblivious day dream. They turned towards Luke with that same expression the man had given Luke, that knowing sinister smile that made his back chill by the supernatural.

The street turned dark, the sun became clouded by thick dark clouds that blotted the light. The people around Luke suddenly fell on the cobbled floor as If a great plague had struck them, he gasped stepping back in shock as women, men and children decayed into shrivelled corpses. They all looked at Luke as they decayed into piles of yellow bones, whispering his name even as their life force dissipated. “Luke” they whispered “Times running out, you’ll be with us soon”.

The street was silent and cold as a crypt as the world around Luke the streets became a dark and haunted perversion of what came before. The bricked houses had an eerie appearance like a tight wall blocking the light and outside world. Bethnal Green became a fantasised underworld that it was known for by the legends and villains that walked it’s streets. For Luke, he was walking in the physical underworld of Bethnal Green, it’s underworld.

______

Bubbling and squelching like a boiling pot of hot water, the dark pool grew wide and deep as it flooded the street up to kneecap height. The young man slowly climbed up the flooded water and up towards the surface like a revenant from the dead. Drenched in water and walking slowly, he brought his left hand up in a clenched fist and opened it up in an open palm. He smiled as the rats appeared all around Luke with gleaming red eyes and decaying fangs that gnawed on dead fleshy chunks. From rooftops to swimming in the water, they sniffed the air catching Luke’s scent. The predators have found its victim.

Luke was trapped in a narrow street with no route for escape, trapped like a rat in a corner. The mysterious man still smiled at Luke, chuckling as he came towards him with the rats circling around. He spoke in a soft and intellectual cockney accent like any East End born “It’s nice to meet you at last Luke, your getting closer now, so very close to the Final Apocalypse”.

“What Final Apocalypse? Who are you! Where’s my friends and where are we?” Luke’s anger rose in agitation at the mans amusement. The man replied back “The journey you’re now undertaking has set a chain in motion that cannot be stopped, and you know you can’t change it. Humanity is on the brink of extinction, the mutant army has grown to a mighty force that’ll invade Melbourne very soon. Even yourself time is running out from the virus that flows in your body. How long will you last until your body finally gives up?”

In rage, Luke balled his right fist tight and strikes the man down by impacting his fist to the face. But the man quickly grabs the hurling fist with ease, and flicks it backwards breaking the wrist and joint to the hand. Luke howls in pain as he falls to his knees cradling his limp hand. The chuckling echoed around the street ridiculing the futile attempt.

“This is my world, what strength you have has no meaning to me, I can make you suffer much more than that. But I’m not a violent man, I don’t believe in violence. But I will defend myself if I perceive a threat”

Luke cradles his hand as he clenched his teeth to endure the pain. He looks up with fury burning in his stare “So what’s the goal for this Final Apocalypse? World domination? Replacing humanity with your mutant army? Or sending your alien friends to earth to make a new home using it’s natural resources?” The cockney man shakes his head and says “None of them, I won’t reveal what we’re doing yet. I await for you at the Water purification power plant”.

He walks away from Luke and snaps his fingers to command the rats to engage towards Luke. The army of rats pounced at him, shredding his lungs and eyes in a bloody bloodbath. Luke screamed in pain as the blood gushed out in pools of dark red in the flood, causing Luke to fall and thrash in the flood water. The rats tore out his ears with their yellow diseased teeth, gnawing at the fleshy meat in greedy gulps. They clawed at the joints in Luke’s legs and arms paralysing him whilst he violently spasmed in pain. Gnawing at his flesh, the rats entered Luke’s body’s as the dug into his insides looking for the tasty organs like the liver, heart, intestines, lungs and kidneys.

At this point Luke would’ve died from shock and intense pain, but he was still alive. All he could hear was the chuckle of the young man as he knelt beside Luke’s thrashing carcass body. “I’m not a violent man” the young man said as the rats eat the last of the flesh that were left on the bones of a dead man.

______

Luke was still alive, even though he was just a pile of bones floating in the flooded street. The young man picked Luke’s skull, he positioned Luke’s skull to look straight at him. “You know times running out Luke, I can see it, the day the virus will clog your vital functions to breath, see, smell and move. You’ll need to hurry, find the Dark Mind, find me and I’ll give you the chance to die trying”. Suddenly he crushed Luke’s skull, and all that can be heard was Luke’s agonising screams as his soul was dragged down into the flood by forces unknown.

The underworld.

_______

Luke blinked his eyes open, sweat pouring down his face and body in a heat of panic and anxiety, heart beating so fast that Luke couldn’t breath for several seconds. Still in his hazmat body gear, he ripped off his gas mask and breathed in an out deeply in jagged breaths. He was back in the wasteland, the dry land that stretched either side of a long tarmac road that seemed better days. Trees dead and hollow like thorns appeared in the distance, with little plant life around Luke.

He turned to see the gang as panicked and distressed as he was, Glenn looked like he saw a ghost, Krakstrong angry from a great offence that caused him to roar. Waz was mumbling to himself, saying about “the heart and soul” like it was a riddle that even his vast knowledge couldn’t decipher. As for the flood, the rats and the man, they vanished like they never existed.

After several minutes of waiting for everyone to calm down Luke spoke to the gang, his nerves still shook him from his nightmare. “Did you guys see that? The man, did you see what the F he did?” They all nodded in agreement, they all saw what happened.

“We were all there in the flood right here, then all of a sudden I was alone in the same shed that my wife was in before she was murdered. The Butcher came back from the dead, standing there eating chunks of my dead wife. Then he came up to me and shredded me alive” said Glenn, he was shaken by what he saw but kept his iron will together. Luke shook his head in confusion. Didn’t they all witness what he did? Or did they see something else……

He said to Glenn “Wait, did you see a young man with an army of rats around us before and after?”. Glenn replies back confused as well “No, I saw the Butcher coming out of the flood, he came up to you before everything changed and I was alone, then I saw the shed like I awoke from a nightmare. I didn’t see an army of rats nor this young man either”.

Luke’s spine chilled as the supernatural became more mysterious by Glenn’s vision of what he saw. Is this how the Dark Mind works? By using the fears and nightmares of its victims to control them? Luke needed to hear what Krakstrong and Waz has to say to see their prospective on the situation.

“Waz, Krakstrong, what did you two see in your visions?”. Krakstrong who calmed down from his anger management looked at Luke and replied “I saw flood, I saw that man thing”. Luke smiled “So you did see that young man with curly hair in the suit too?”. But krakstrong shook his head “No, I saw my old self, Keith, he tried to posses my body and turn me back into a human”.

This was another revelation that made things more complicated. Luke looked at Waz and waited for his reply, Waz talked slowly in a dry unemotional tone “I saw the flood, it defies logic for there wasn’t any water source, not this far into land unless there were rain clouds. But there were no rain clouds, the water came from the ground. Then I saw you coming up from the flood, you asked me to take your hand……then ………” he stopped. He didn’t say anything after that.

It’s an illusion more likely, a game that the Dark Mind plays to lure its victims into a false sense of unease and lower their mental defences. But, they all saw something in the flood, but was it a being that could use powers to show different prospectives, or was it more complex than that? Why did Waz see Luke in his prospective, was Luke his greatest fear, regret, loss or jealousy?

Whatever it was, it made no sense, especially when comparing each experience with each other. One was fear, the other in denial. For Luke, his was the strangest one that was someone he never met before in the flesh. He knew the person in books he read, horror stories that would chill your bones and screw your mind by the violent and supernatural horror. The man died many decades ago, this being wasn’t the same man as the one Luke saw. It was a younger version, a mocking disguise of someone’s flesh and identity.

The man he met in the flood was called James. He was now Luke’s nightmare, the living manifestation of Luke’s fear of a slow death by the virus that’s flowing in his body. Once his time was over, the rats will surely find him and they will devour him……..

_______

The gang reached the end of their long walk across the long stretch of road leading towards the Water purification power plant. They see a gas station that was abandoned, this will be their resting point until tomorrow. Glenn and Luke scouted the area to see if there were any hostiles in the area, none were found. They enter the kiosk shop, scanning the shop for supplies and clearing the area for them to rest. Krakstrong will have to sleep outside as there weren’t enough room for him to fit into kiosk space.

As the sun went down and the stars came out, the gang rested from the long days road trip. Gathering their thoughts on what happened that day. It still shook them from the experience of witnessing the supernatural influence of the Dark Mind. But it made them more determined and stronger to stop the Dark Mind.

Waz went outside walking around the building where no one will notice him for a few minutes. He held up his symbiotic arm that withered and morphed constantly, cables, flesh, metal and bone morphed like a constant wave. He morphed a small screen with buttons to tune the signal, a small tv like device that he used to catch the signal that he was following.

He tuned it for a couple of minutes as the static buzzing fuzzed when tuning for a signal. The he got the signal, a barley visible green glow of an unidentifiable person on the screen. The person spoke to Waz through the radio speakers “So, have brought the group to the location that we agreed on? Has Luke collected the package from his father?”

Waz replied back in a dry cold tone “yes, he doesn’t suspect that I know about his package. We’re at an old gas station to rest for the night, by tomorrow we should be on schedule following the river down towards the location for three days”. The person replied back “Good, I’ll be waiting for you by day two, make sure your not delayed or this entire mission will be doomed”. The signal went as the man signed off. Waz was about to go back when suddenly he was pinned to the wall by a great force of impact, breaking his bones. A big purple hand pushed him into the brickwork pinning him to restrain his movement. He turns one of his eyes around to see Krakstrong snarling at him, radiating pure hatred at Waz.

“Who were you taking to! Answer now or I’ll tear you apart!!!!”

End of part 3