Thursday, June 24, 2004

The Alien Factor

My nearly ten-year-old 19-inch TV finally gave out, so for Father's Day I got a new 27-incher, which frightens my daughter as she says it looks like a robot, and makes me feel slightly less liberal then when I had my old clunker. But man, the first show I watched on it, a Food TV special on wedding cakes, looked so great my eyes almost bled.

More from RING OF THE SORCERESS, with some vampire chicks today:

Shadow is ever-watchful. He hears a SHUFFLING NOISE that makes him wary.
Suddenly, the lovely servant from earlier, her clothes in tatters, limps into view.
(barely a whisper)
Help me, good sir knight.
Shadow sheathes his weapon.
I am no knight--but I will help thee.
He reaches out to her, and she collapses into his arms.
How come you to this terrible place?
Queen Esme bid me here.
I should have known. What do you need? Food? Drink?
She looks at him, and her eyes glow red.
I need a life.
She leaps up and latches onto Shadow's neck, trying to drink deep.
After a moment of struggling, she falls off, clutching at her own throat and gasping.
I fear that my blood has turned to dust, maiden. What kind of monster has these catacombs made thee?
The servant girl weeps blood.
I know not. But down here we are legion. And our master is all-powerful.
Take me from his ranks, good sir.
Shadow slowly unsheathes his blade once more.
It shall be done.
The servant girl exposes her neck, weeping with gratitude.
His sword comes down in a killing stroke.
Shadow steps away from the gory chore and looks on the girl with regret. Suddenly, there is a HISSING behind him. He whirls.
More of the former servant girls are stepping from dark shadows.
We are not like her. We love our master.
The girl dives at Shadow, teeth bared, claws extended. Her hands rake across his chest, drawing blood. Another is on his back, putting him in a choke hold, and trying to wrestle him to the ground.
Shadow butts one against the wall until she falls off, stunned. Then he gets his sword free and runs the first one through.
Another dives out of the darkness, and knocks Shadow to the ground. The pair tussle and roll across the cold stone floor. Shadow's face and chest are raked with claws.
Shadow reaches for his sword, fallen not far from his grasp. He finally gets it, and with a mighty blow, runs the servant girl through.
He stands up, and finds he has run it through her and him both. He finds she is pinned to him as he takes a few staggering steps. He wrenches the sword free with a horrible GROAN, and the corpse flops to the ground.
Shadow staggers out of the death-chamber.

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