Tag Archive: night

Let them be afraid

“They’re afraid of rumors and tall tales.  And I let them be afraid.  It makes my job easier.”  – Richard Kadrey, Butcher Bird

“We wear the mask that grins and lies, / It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes” – Paul Lawrence Dunbar, We Wear the Mask


When I look in the mirror, I flinch.

I should never have put it on.

This is all my own fault.  I should never have put it on, because now it won’t come off.

All I wanted was to be strong, and to be scary, just so I could get them to leave me alone for a minute.  And now it won’t come off.  I’ve tried everything I can think of, and I don’t know how it stays on.  Trying to take it off hurts, now, and feels like trying to pull off my own face.

But my face doesn’t look like this.  Please, don’t let this be what my face looks like.  I can’t be this… this thing I see, now.  It was only supposed to be for a minute.

I can’t live like this.  This can’t be who I’ve turned into, over one stupid decision.  Nothing that split second can be permanent.  That’s just not fair.  I can’t have turned into something like this, just from that one second’s fear and anger and shame.  One decision can’t make me a different person.  It just can’t.

But, I mean…

It’s not that bad, not really.  I can get used to it, if I give it a little while.  And it sure as shit does what I wanted it to do.  It makes them leave me alone.  It makes them leave me right the hell alone.

There are advantages to a face that makes people flinch, even if one of those people is me.

Who am I to turn down something that useful?  I mean, really, this whole thing has done me a favor.  I can be anything I want to be under here, and nobody will be able to tell the difference.  All they’ll see is this new face, and they’ll be afraid.

Well, let them be afraid.  They ought to be.

This might be the best stupid decision I ever made.  I hope it never comes off.  Let them be afraid.  Everybody knows monsters don’t get lonely.

Nice things about being alone in my house: I can eat candy corn for breakfast and work naked in front of my computer on days when I am all ragged out from weekends.  (What? It’s a blog.  I can say thoroughly blog-y stereotypical things from time to time.  I am experimenting with intentional self-indulgence.)


So here’s the miscellaneous update of Stuff That’s Happened While I Wasn’t Writing Things Down:

1) Apparently the ass-back of nowhere, Kentucky has not yet discovered the Internet.  Note to self: import Al Gore ASAP.  So I have to collect all my notes from various gadgets and notebooks and dredge through memory (hyuk hyuk) to get back what I can of the experience itself.

2) The Cumberland Gap is beautiful country.  There is something surreal about going through the weather change between being in a giant meteor crater, going underground through a 2-mile tunnel, and coming out the other side into an entirely different world.  I had forgotten what it’s like to be in a land with seasons and heights when the seasons are changing and there is air and temperature and moisture moving and changing and making a difference.

3) Underground tunnels create their own wind.  Underground train tunnels have closets built into them so that idiots who wander into them and get stuck when a train is coming by can stuff themselves into the underground closet and not get smooshed like a bug on a truck windshield.  Coal trains are heavy, and almost impossible to stop.  Coal trucks, ditto.  Mines are fascinating, active mines are boggling, reclaimed mines are hellaciously fun to climb (by vehicle or foot) and peer at the billions of years of accretion and building and time all pulled up and turned over and crumbling at a touch.  Fascinating and sad and terrifying and wonderful, watching the wild take it back over.  Slag heaps – never seen one before.  Have now.  There is such a thing as fool’s coal – who knew?  Next time, the cast-off casting yards and foundries – skeletons of iron like dinosaurs of industry left to rust.  Shudderingly fascinating.  And more trains.  And, if I can get a functional jetpack, I have been promised that I can trespass on an active mine.  So now I have to find a functional jetpack.  (Apparently there is some concern that I am not *quite* nimble enough to dodge a three-lane-wide coal truck weighing 100s of tons going 70 mph. Piffle!)

4) You can smell an active mine from miles out.  It is a smell like nothing else.  It has its own miasma, especially at night.  Totally unique.  Horrifyingly fascinating.  My inner hippie and my inner industry rat go to war.  Obsession in the making.

5) I found entirely new people in the City, which is something that hasn’t happened in a while.  Pell Mell is a defined personality in a tribe I already knew was there, and one of the rare males-of-power.  Very happy to have met him, and I am looking forward to watching him go running downhill.  InterKid may or may not end up in the books, but he is fucking neat either way.  He is definitely a City denizen, and thoroughly different.  A cool pool of laid-back separatism.  Makes me kind of glad to meet a person who is a denizen who may or may not be involved at all.  Sort of neat.

6) Really reconnected with one old friend and got to know his fiancee (too lazy for accent marks) much better.  I cannot express how happy I am for them – they are disgustingly cutely in love, and it reminds me what love can be like.  Beautiful and adorable and vomit-inducing and fabulous.  Making plans to go up again in a few weeks, and thoroughly happy about that, too.


Above all, I am happy that I have used “happy” more times than is reasonable in this.  Joy tag ahoy, and life is better that it’s getting bigger again!

%d bloggers like this: