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November 23, 2015

Pure Human - Dream (NaNoWriMo update #5)

[Posted by Ted H]

I'm on pace to finish with a week to go. Not too bad when you consider I've been working overtime for over a month. Working retail through Halloween and into Black Friday, no big deal, right?

Current status of my 2015 NaNoWriMo: 39,086 / 50,000 (10,914 words to go!)
Current pace has me writing my 50,000th word on: November 30th


[Pure Human - Dream]

            Anin was having the dream again. It had become routine at this point, but she didn't mind this time at first because something was being done about it. Something felt different though. The scene of the park was always so vivid before, but this time she had a different perspective. After a moment of looking about, she realized that this time, she wasn't just observing, she was actively participating in the dream.
            The sight, smell and feel of the park remained the same, but this time Anin was free to walk about as she pleased, able to take in the sight of the environment and people in it. She watched and smiled at the sight of children playing carelessly and small dogs happily chasing after them. She looked over to see a young couple on a bench, snuggled close and whispering into each other's ears.
            It was such a surreal scene that Anin almost forgot the star of her reoccurring dream. Perhaps it was taking the chance to take in the positives that allowed her to momentarily ignore the looming negative. But just as Anin allowed herself to remember what waited in the middle of the park, a thought struck her. The heartbreaking fact of the dying man was, before, no one even noticing him as he faded away. This time, Anin planned to change that. Maybe she could save the dying man or at least give him comfort as he passes.
            With that thought, Anin took off running through the park. She wasn't far from the center and wanted to make it in time to try an alter the usual ending to this dream. No one paid interest as she jogged by, going about their own business in oblivious fashion. There was several yards of sidewalk to traverse before hitting a small clearing, at the center of which was the dying man. As she approached the end, she could already see the man, sitting back on his knees with a sad look on his face as he slowly started to fade from view.
            "Wait!" Anin pleaded as she ran faster and waved her arm at him "I see you! I'm coming!" The man took no notice of her as he continued to fade and act the same way she had observed him dozens of times before. Anin hit the grass and started to slow down as she came up on the man who, if memory served correctly, was on the verge of fading away completely to end the dream in its usual somber feel.
            "I'm here!" Anin cried "I see you!" She approached the man, whose head hung low as it continued to fade. The was the point in all her dreams that he faded for good. The dream would end and she would awaken. This time though she was still asleep and able to interact. She reached out to where the man was and touched what turned out to be his arm, causing him to reappear slightly and pick his head up a bit. "It's okay now," she said. The man then snapped his hand onto his arm and grabbed hold as he slowly picked his head up more. Anin pulled back, but could not break the grasp.
            The man's sad face gave way to an uneasy smile as he seemed barely able to contain a deep laugh. His eyes, brown in color before, were now a deep black. He dug his fingers deeper into Anin's arm as he stopped fading and slowly came back into view. He let out an excited, deep gasp as he looked at Anin with his black eyes. He then reached for her arm with his other hand and tried pulling her down to him.
            "Stop!" Anin pleaded as she pulled back and tried to free her arm from his grasp. The man gave off a deep, rasped laugh as Anin frantically pulled at her arm. The man began to fade away again, but this time Anin started fading as well, causing more panic in her actions as she desperately tried to free herself. With one final try, she jerked her entire body back, dragging her arm out of the man's hands as she fell back-
            -and toppled out of her bad onto the ground below, bringing her blanket and pillow down with her. She gasped for breath as she tried to calm herself down, wet with sweat and fear. She laid awkwardly on the ground as she waited to stop shaking. Her arm hurt, and in the darkness she felt blood drip down onto her hand. Where the man dragged his dug in fingers had left the same injury in reality.
            She grasped her free hand over the injury as blood seeped through her fingers and she propped herself against the wall near her bed. She glanced up to see light emanating from a nearby desk where she had put her stones from the night prior. Last night they were barely able to light up, now each one of them shone brightly despite being so far away from her when she slept. Anin shut her eyes tight as she turned away from the stones, and finally cried out as loud as she could.

November 15, 2015

Pure Human - Day Drinking (NaNoWriMo update #4)

[Posted by Ted H]

We are at the halfway point of NaNoWriMo 2015...I'm still on pace to finish on time, which is amazing when you consider I've had only 2 days off all month so far. Sundays seems to be the only guarantee from here on out, so it looks to be from now on: 6 days of trying to keep my head above water (1500ish words a day) just to get to 1 day of furious writing. This might work since day 29 is a sunday.

Current status of my 2015 NaNoWriMo: 25,285 / 50,000 (24,715 words to go!)
Current pace has me writing my 50.000th word on: November 30th


[Pure Human - Day Drinking]

            They drove home, and waiting for them there, sitting on the front steps was a woman with dark purple hair and a hand sewn black dress. "Ho boy," Blake said under his breath as they walked towards her. "What's up, Anin?" he said aloud. "Hi Blake," the woman said with a lackluster tone and half wave but a genuine smile. "At least Matthew and I have house phones," Blake said to John. "Then why is she here?" John asked.
            "Good question," Blake said as they reached the steps "What can I do ya for, Anin?"
            "I was hoping you could tell me," she said in a timid voice with a half smile.
            "Come again?"
            "Long story short, I was guided here," Anin said without pause. Blake waited for a crack in her face to suggest she was joking, but one never came. He turned to John who shrugged, then he turned back to Anin and announced "I need to be drinking before you start explaining. He walked passed her and fished out his keys.

November 11, 2015

Pure Human - Look Into It (NaNoWriMo update #3)

[Posted by Ted H]

Fell a bit behind, but rallied big time to catch up and stay on track. Go me! Now to update real quick while my stats say I'm still on track...

Current status if my 2015 NaNoWriMo: 18,601 / 50,000 (31,399 words to go!)
Current pace has me writing my 50,000th word on: November 30th


[Pure Human - Look Into It]

            Some time later, they arrived in a familiar apartment complex in the projects. "Why doesn't Matthew have a cell phone?" John asked as he parked. "Don't get me started on his paranoia with cell phones," Blake said with a grin. "I can understand you," John said "You're a cheap bastard and you're usually with me anyway so you just use my phone. Just wish you could chip in on my bill."
            "I do."
            "One time! One time, and you didn't even pay half! Anyway, Matthew lives alone and barely leaves his house. He afraid of something out here?"
            "Probably. He thinks so at least. He overplays it, I'm sure."
            They got out of the car and made their way into the complex. The courtyard was just as uncared for as ever. Some might mistake the dead grass and shoddy walkways as a result of another brutal upstate New York winter, but residents knew better. Blake and John entered a building and John pressed a button for an elevator. They waited a few minutes as the elevator slowly made their way down.
            "Why don't we take the stairs?" John asked.
            "It's a dozen flights," Blake said "Do I look like I exercise enough for that?"
            The elevator arrived and the two men took a cramped ride up to the 14th floor and walked to room 13. Blake began knocking as John took notice of some of the carvings on the doorframe. "Some of these are new," he said as Blake shrugged. "Apparently spells and protections can ware off," Blake said as he knocked again louder.
            "I heard you the first time!" someone inside called. Several locks and chains were undone before the door cracked open to reveal Matthew peeking out. "Oh goodie," he said sarcastically "Blake is here." He opened the door and invited the two inside. John attempted an awkward greeting to which Matthew replied in kind. "Anyone want tea?" he asked, referring to a tray with several cups and a kettle. Before John could say anything, Blake immediately advised him otherwise on it.
            "So, what pleasure brings you to my humble abode today?" Matthew asked.
            "Need a little help on a case," Blake said "Something's messing with a little girl. John's got all the details for you."
            "And you think I'd be able to assist you, because...?" Matthew asked.
            "You know all about things like this," Blake quipped "The obscure creatures most people ever hear about, and the others people try to forget. You get off on knowing."
            "Knowing of certain things and being able to recall exactly what you need to know about at the drop of a dime are two entirely different concepts."
            "I said John has the details."
            "Why would I even want to help? This is your case, what am I getting out of it?"
            "There's a little girl whose life may hang in the balance."   
            "You mentioned the girl. Too bad that won't sway me like you hope."
            "Because I don't think it's a unique situation. And I know you love crazy stuff like that no one else seems to catch in time."
            "Something about the family history on the mother's side smells funny. It's not exact to what's happening now, but it might fit. Some supernatural force plaguing the family maybe, but I've no idea what, and I figure we'd save time by going right to you to start."
            "Interesting," Matthew said while stroking his goatee.
            "Peaked your interest, didn't I?"
            "Maybe," Matthew admitted "But I can't just drop everything to help you. Not for free."
            " has been tight lately."
            "With you, Blake, it always seems to be. But no, money isn't an issue. I'm doing you this favor, so you can do one for me."
            "That depends on the favor."
            "I need someone to look into a situation."
            John, despite what Blake said, wandered over near the tea tray and had helped himself to a glass. After a short sip, he coughed it up, causing Matthew and Blake to look over at him. "What, uh, what situation are you referring to?" he asked, trying to get the men back on track, and back to ignoring him.
            "Out near Albany, there's been a huge influx of abnormal energies," Matthew stated "Espers are feeling things all over the map and psychics in the area say something terrible is happening."
            "So what is it?" Blake asked.
            "That's the tricky thing," Matthew said "Anyone looking close into it come up empty. No foreign or supernatural powers are at work, just energy generated by humans. It's queer to say the least."
            "So no one has actually investigated?"
            "What's to investigate. The circles we operate in don't deal with incidents of the normal kind. There's no demons, angels, or creatures of any particular realms or supernatural origin at work. Just people emitting a strange vibe."
            "Maybe it's a cover to something more sinister."
            "No. Even the most subtle outside influence can't hide itself from a energy surge we're experiencing."
            "Are you sure it's just human energy?"
            "Let me put it this way. During the Holocaust, the energy output generated by the levels of human misery were so high and concentrated (no pun intended) that espers all over Europe and some in the Americas were convinced that the devil himself was tearing his way into our world."
            "I didn't know regular humans can make that kind of unique energy, or whatever it is they do," Blake said, barely able to grasp the conversation.
            "That's why I'd like you to at least look into Albany. At best, it's some sort of terrible murderer, probably torturing his victims or something equally horrendous. That sort of thing is best left to police, but I know how much you love to meddle."
            "I do," Blake admitted "That's the best case scenario? What's the worst?"
            "Worst case?" Matthew said "Worst case is this turns out to be something we've never seen before, probably with world altering consequences."
            "You seem so optimistic about that one."
            "Chicago turned out to be something like that. So you can understand why I'm so keen to have someone look into it for me, just to be safe."
            "Whatever," Blake said waving his hand in the air to disregard the idea of a Chicago situation happening again "Deal. We'll look into it while you find the boogeyman in our case."
            Blake and Matthew shook hands on the matter as a mock sealant to their agreement. Details were exchanged and soon Blake and John were on their way home to prepare for their trip to Albany. Once they were back in the car, John had a question that had been bugging him.
            "If espers can detect energy or whatever, wouldn't they be able to detect what's attacking Lizzie?" he asked "That might save us some hassle."
            "Nah," Blake responded as he pulled out a cigarette and contemplated it "They only detect large scale energy or some crap like that."
            "We going right over to Albany?"
            "We'll go tomorrow. It's a favor, not a case. The end of the world isn't at stake."
            "You don't wanna prepare? Even a little?"
            "I'll make a couple calls. I also wanna go out, get drunk and make some questionable decisions before I take this little trip."
            "Getting drunk? Sold. Saving the world can wait."

November 5, 2015

Pure Human - Illusion Breaker (NaNoWriMo update #2)

[Posted by Ted H]

I get one off day this week, and by God did I use it. Each day so far I've managed to barely keep ahead of par for the month, after today I'm comfortable with a nice lead. Time to keep pushing...

Current status of my 2015 NaNoWriMo: 10,007 / 50,000 (39,993 words to go!)
Current pace has me writing my 50,000th word on: November 25th


[Pure Human - Illusion Breaker]

            "This is going well," John quipped as Blake approached the trunk of the car and opened it. John waited patiently as Blake rummaged around for a bit before finally asking "So what's on your mind?" Blake didn't turn to John. "It's not a demon," he said "At least I don't think it is. Most possessions are demonic. Something's definitely wrong with the kid though."
            "What do you think it is?" John asked.
            "Possession is easiest to prove. Demonic kinds are the most obvious, but other forces are more subtle."
            "Lizzie isn't subtle so much as a complete personality overhaul, according to her father."
            "Subtle or not," Blake said as he retrieved a bag and opened it "There are ways to expose any kind of hostile takeover." He pulled out a few vials of varied powders and an empty vial. He shook a little from each vial into the empty and put a lid on it. "The wife seems nice though."
            "The client said she isn't normally like this either. She's just stressed out." John said.
            "If my kid was possessed or my husband was telling everyone he met on the street as much, yeah, I'd be a little stressed, too." Blake said as he returned everything but his concoction to the bag carefully.

November 1, 2015

Pure Human - Ungodly Hour (NaNoWriMo update #1)

[Posted by Ted H]

Todays update is NaNoWriMo fresh! Like, straight out of the over and onto the table fresh! Written several hours ago fresh! I have no time to edit so this is as raw as it gets fresh!
At midnight, NaNoWriMo 2015 began and with it, began the furious writing of thousands, including myself. And with this being Sunday, I figured I'd update today and give immediate progress on my 2015 run. Did I mention todays update is fresh?

Does anyone else notice I'm starting to utilize the page break feature to keep the main page fron being gigantic?

Current Status of my 2015 NaNoWriMo: 1,703 / 50,000 (48,297 words to go!)
Current pace has me writing my 50,000th words on: November 30th)


[Pure Human - Ungodly Hour]

            The early spring air still had a chill to it; Even inside of a car it couldn't be escaped. Blake leaned against the window from his passenger side seat feeling the cold bite his skin as he kept his eyes tight while trying to trick himself into thinking he was still asleep despite spending the last couple hours dragging himself about. A nearby door being closed signaled that his faux nap was definitely over as he slowly opened his eyes and let out a long sigh that fogged up his window.
            As John ultimately entered the car, Blake watched the fog slowly fade away as he forced another sigh to fog the window back up. This momentarily entertained him as John said something he ignored and breathed onto the window one more time, this time to see how cloudy he could make the window in one breath. It was petty, and completely pointless, but Blake milked what enjoyment from it that he could before he had to go out into the world and be an adult.
            "Whatever," John said as he fired up the engine and Blake finally picked his head off of the window. "Alright, let's do this," Blake said as he felt about his trench coat for his cigarettes. Most mornings for Blake was a process to waking up so that by noon he was naturally ready to face the day, which for him meant the night. For days like today, where he was out at the ungodly hour of 10am, he needed a three step combo of a cigarette, a coffee and then another cigarette. He had smoked a cigarette earlier before stumbling into John's car and trying to sleep again, but that one didn't count.

October 26, 2015


A collection of posted poems...
by: Ted H.

Don't (2011)

Dry Erase (2008)

Fat Lady Rolling Down a Steep Hill (2004)

Fly (2006)

Grave (2009)

I Need a Smoke (2008)

Party (2008)

Red Dot Martyrs (2007)

Twenty Days (2006)

Weed From a Can (2011)

October 25, 2015

Witches Shadow

[Posted by Ted H]

Happy Halloween. Now, enjoy the triumphant return of James Blake and John Praque! This time next week I'll embark on my quest for 50,000 as I begin the 2nd Blake novel. Enjoy this short that if anything, shows that Blake is no longer just an average guy trying to make sense of the supernatural.


[Witches Shadow]

"I am so mad at you now," Blake said as the car drove passed the dark and empty gas station. "Christ, my bad," John complained from the driver side "I'll never hear the end of this, will I?" Blake shook his head as he looked to his pack of cigarettes, only three remained inside to last him through the night. He'd smoke one before bed, and had a hard craving to smoke one right now, meaning he had only one left for some unknown point in the night, and he felt it was going to be a long night.
            "Next time you think you know of an 24-hour gas station on Bear..." Blake began as he lit up his cigarette "...Make sure you know which one; Bear Road? Or Bear Street? Because the difference is paramount!"
            "I stand by my choice," John defended himself "I wasn't driving out of the way just so you could pick up a pack. Next time remember to pick your cancer sticks up during normal business hours." Blake rolled his eyes as he returned his lighter to his trench coat and took a drag. They were on a case. More specifically, Blake was on a case. John was around because he owned a car and a former cop can find other ways to be useful.
            "Which house is it?" John asked as Blake flicked ash out the open window. "Towards the end of the street. Red cedar house. Should be the only one without lights on." Blake then looked to his cigarette and frowned at how much had already burned away. "Remind me why we're here?" John asked.
            "Our client, Kaylyn, wants us to find her older sister, preferably before their parents come home in two nights."
            "Sounds like a job for the police and Missing Persons."
            "Kaylyn says her sister had been dabbling in certain things."
            "What kind of things?"
            "She didn't know. Probably Wiccan."
            "Damn sluts."
            "I know, right?"
            "Where's the younger sister now?"
            "Friends house."
            "Dare I ask why it's us and not her searching the home?"
            "Because the last thing Kaylyn remembers before running from the house was her sister screaming followed by something demonic crying out."
            "Wiccans can summon?"
            "So the job is to find the sister and figure what happened?"
            "Pretty much. So you'll understand why I'm so miffed over not having an adequate supply of smokes for this evenings activities."
            "You could have a carton of those things and still not think you have an adequate supply for an evening."
            "...Touché....But c'mon, just three?"
            "Those things will kill ya anyway."
            "No. Dealing with another crazy Wiccan girl in my life will kill me."
            Both men continued to quip back and forth until John spotted the right house and slowed to a stop in front of it. "So what's the plan?" John asked as he killed the engine. Blake laughed as he got out, amused at the notion that he would deviate from his usual MO of figuring things out as the situation happens. "First we need to see what we're up against," he said as he flicked his spent cigarette away and walked towards the house.