Sunday, November 1, 2009

Flash is still dead, rot in hell, Flash!

"I may be dead, but I can still eat your brains."

Sorry, it's not pumpkin-stuffed crocodile, but it'll have to do.

Warning: choking hazard, small parts, not suitable for children under 3 years was what the Li'l Edgar Allan Poe Posable Figure box said, but Johnny didn't listen because he was almost thirteen so he ripped off the head and ate it.

The head of Edgar Allan Poe got lodged in his esophagus, as anyone knew it would, but that didn't stop Johnny, who nearly passed out in enlisting a third-party Heimlich from his neighbor, Crazy Uncle Gus, who, incidentally, wasn't his uncle, from subsequently managing to crack a molar in splitting the head in half. Hours passed before he felt the first of many strange sensations in his stomach, the cosmos conspiring against his afterschool snack be damned.

Was it lead poisoning? Once Johnny heard mom and dad complaining about cheap Chinese trinkets. He always got picked on for having filthy hippies for parents.

Was the plastic having an adverse reaction with his stomach acid, creating a new, dangerous substance that would slowly and painfully rot him from inside?

Was the head infused with magic?

That was the most plausible answer in light of Johnny's wholly unexpected, prodigious and macabre writing talents that began to bloom mere days after the waves of tingles in his gut vanished.

The rebellion disappeared, the waste of teenage land disappeared as did Johnny to the basement, not to fire up the PlayStation and down cases of carbonated beverages, but to write all through the night. Churning out such masterpieces as MS. Found on a Flash Drive, The Balloon-Boy Hoax, The Fall of the House of Bush, The Tell-Tale Kidney, The Masque of the Yellow Fever and The Black Dog: Hey Hey Mama, the next few years saw Johnny become somewhat of a local celebrity, with an endless stream of visits from college English professors who wanted to satisfy their curiosity, and their jealousy, if truth be told.

With his childish play on titles by the master himself, the curious branches of worshipful yet humble pastiche and modern, morbidly comic sensibilities soon bore the dark fruits of a fresh, grimly different prose. Something shadowy was growing in that damp suburban dungeon, and even the gothic flock of sultry admirers sneaking in beer, controlled substances and selfish pleas for illicit love while his parents were at work couldn't stem the tenebrous tide of terrifyingly beautiful text flowing from his pen.

What could, was madness.

Challenging the myriad laws of literary theory, deconstructing the postmodernists into their component parts, a dust easily carried away on the updrafts of his own, well- deserved hubris, Johnny's transformation was frightening. No longer a skilled author of the dark arts, he metamorphosed into the blackest wizard, wielding linguistic spells heretofore thought beyond the grasp of mortal men. With each step further down into the darkness, one less college English professor visited, one less Suicide Girl groupie groped, one less parent fussed, for even they feared venturing into that bleak, poorly lit pit, the playground of the mad.

Only the stench of Johnny's corpse was powerful enough to bring them beyond the forbidden portal into the barely legible legacy of the genius, the insane. The ghost of the extraordinary man of letters, obsessed to compose the one, last masterwork that had eluded him in life, had spent one more kindred, lost soul in fevered, merciless monomania and dispersed into the ether, ready to bide his time, waiting for another opportunity in the next Li'L Edgar Allan Poe Posable Figure.


Tom Harper said...

I'm trying to imagine what a "third party Heimlich" would be. Especially when it involves an uncle who isn't really an uncle.

Demeur said...

Maybe it was the BPA in the plastic head that started turning our writer into one of those girly men. It was an identity crisis I tell you that made him what he was.

Übermilf said...

Did the kid become addicted to heroin, too?

themom said...

OH, so many questions - but you had me hooked!

Holte Ender said...

Like a pumpkin-stuffed crocodile at the Sam's Club in Guangzhou, Herbert was feeling the cold. He never usually shopped there but the employees of Whole Foods were on strike and he needed to see vast quantities of dead animals that nobody ever bought. Herbert's favorite uncle had been eaten by crocodiles while surfing down the Nile from Kilimanjaro to Cairo. He zipped up his coat and put his hands in his deep pockets, rummaged around, and found some fire crackers left over from July 4th, he knew they would come in handy one day.

Tengrain said...

Graves, you swine!

Giving head not eating head. Don't they teach you anything about idioms in Cleveland?



Distributorcap said...

was there a raven that was quoted?

susan said...

All I can say is thank goodness he didn't eat a Barbie Doll. The world is already too full of airheads who can't decipher instruction manuals.

S.W. Anderson said...

If Johnny's mother hadn't been off holding up a Jiffy Lube sign by the arterial, trying to keep the family in enough money to not be reduced to dreaded Basic Cable penury, she might've prevented all this.

"Johnny, your lunch is ready: raven salad sandwiches and a small glass of Amontillado, since you're getting to be quite the young man. Try to ditch the lettuce or snitch seconds on the wine and you'll need chiropractic care we can't afford. Enjoy!"

sunshine said...

All that from an Edgar Allen Poe figure?
And then he died???

That was some dark shit man. :P
Great though.


Dr. Zaius said...

li'l Edgar Allan Poe Posable Figure - Which one do you want? [ 1 2 ]

sunshine said...

If anyone was going to find a li'l Edgar Allan Poe Posable Figure on the internet.. it was Dr.Zed.


Cormac Brown said...

H.P. and Edgar Allan's ghosts stand in amazement before you.

Beach Bum said...

Thank God, it was the HP Lovecraft posable figure. Great story!

MRMacrum said...

This leaves me wondering what posable figure did Poe ingest? Maybe he just ate a copy of Beowulf.

For some reason, this tale reminded me of Polanski's movie "Repulsion". Excellent piece of writing Randal.

Randal Graves said...

tom, as long as it's not Himmler. Thank you, thank you!

demeur, so one shouldn't eat things manufactured from processed toxic sludge?

übermilf, given the opportunity, wouldn't we all?

themom, then it was a success!

holte, what if some of those crocs weren't dead, but merely unconscious? I'd be afraid to light those firecrackers.

tengrain, sadly, we know all about idiots here, they run the Browns. Off with their heads!

dcap, no, he was dinner.

susan, I can't see this guy driving around in a pink dream car.

SWA, good point. All the naughty shows are on HBO, Showtime and pay-per-view these days.

sunshine, let this be a lesson: don't eat action figures!

dr.zaius, the second one is what I've got, but that first one could kick G.I. Joe's punk ass!

cormac, thanks, I was going for a little Music of Erich Zann, too.

BB, I know. We can deal with self-destructive writers, but summoning man-eating entities from the beyond?

mrmacrum, I think Grendel is squatting in his basement. Carbonated beverages are very addictive, even to monsters.

Alan Griffiths said...

Dark stuff Randall but very good and way out there - somewhere! Enjoyed it very much.

Randal Graves said...

Thank you, sir!

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