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To Death and Beyond [May2015]

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posted on Apr, 30 2015 @ 10:01 PM
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To Death and Beyond

“Hey Bill! Come take a look at this.”
Professor Jansen wasn't used to hearing his usually reserved friend Kirk sound so excited. He stood looking where Kirk was pointing and at first didn't recognize what he was looking at. Until he saw the one next to it. And the one next to that. Six in all. Old, crudely made tombstones. Characters were barely visible on a few of them, but Professor Jansen didn't need to see any more.

Professor Jansen, or Bill to his friends, was a Senior Professor of American History and one of the worlds foremost authorities on the American civil war. It was his passion. In fact, that passion is what led him to the place he was now standing. After years of teaching on the east coast, Bill finally realized his dream of owning land where an actual civil war battle had been fought, and he got it for a song. And he landed his dream job, teaching American History focusing on the civil war, at the University just a few miles away. It didn't seem like life could get any better.

“Looks like these stones were marked in a hurry, probably in the night during breaks in the battle. Can you imagine Kirk, what it must have been like?” Kirk shook his head, staring at the humble stones. “I can honestly say I can't. But it must have been hell.” The two men stood there, one trying desparately to envision the events that led to the arrangement of tombstones before him, the other trying desparately to not think about it. “I wish I could share your enthusiasm Bill, I really do. But this stuff gets to me. I feel it in my bones, like something is wrong and I should be doing something about it but I can't because it happened 200 years ago.” “Actually, 150 years. 1861 to 1865, remember?” “OK Professor, class dismissed.” The two men laughed and started back toward the house when they saw their sons, who had also become good friends, approaching.

“Tom, you wont believe what Kirk found – a set of six tombstones, laid out side by side in rows of three. We haven't looked too closely at the inscriptions yet, but I have a pretty good idea what the date will be.” Bill knew his son Tom, named after Thomas Jefferson, would be as interested in the discovery as he was. “Dad, thats awesome! Where are they?” Tom asked while looking back where his father and Kirk had just come from. “Just this side of the old barn. The stones are visible, but pretty worn. I don't think the inscirptions were that good to begin with, but we will get a better look at them in the morning.” “Dad, is it ok if I hang out here this weekend? I'd like to see those stones too,” Kirk's son Grant asked. “Sure, if its ok with Bill.” “You know it is Kirk. You two are always welcome here.”

Molly and Danielle, wives of Bill and Kirk respectively, prepared a sumptuous meal to celebrate the finding of Bill's very own archeological site. “We have to do this right,” Bill said excitedly. “We can get some of my students to help. We can even make it part of the intern program. Oh, this is going to be awesome!” Molly could hardly contain herslef watching her college professor husband beaming like a schoolboy looking at a brand new bike. “Bill, try to cheer up a little,” Molly chided.

Bill and Molly climbed into bed both knowing Bill was far to energized to sleep. “Think of it Molly. Right here, this is where it happened. 150 years ago there were hundreds of union and confederate soldiers right here on this land. A good many of them never left.” “Bill, honey. That's not what I want to be thinking about as I lay down to sleep.” “No, I guess not.” Bill reminded himself that not everyone was as thrilled about knowing so many men had died right there on his land 150 years ago. “That must have been one hell of a battle though,” Bill mused. “I wish I could have seen it.”

Kirk awoke with a start snapping up in bed and looking at the clock - 2:26am. As the dream slipped away from him, Kirk remembered seeing the war as if he was looking through the eyes of a confederate soldier, right down the barrel of a union rifle, the bayonet almost touching his nose. He thought it was odd that the union soldier has a tatto on the back of his left hand that looked like a pyramid with a rounded bottom. Then the dream was gone. He laid back down and closed his eyes trying to remember more details but they had vanished into the night.

The next morning Bill insisted on biscuits and sausage gravy for breakfast. Not his usual fare, but this was going to be an amazing day and he wanted to get it started off right. The two families headed out for breakfast, with Molly wondering why Bill was so adamant about a breakfast she had never seen him eat in twenty five years of marriage. Bill tore through his breakfast as if he thought someone would take it if he didn't finish it fast enough. “Slow down Bill, you are going to choke if you keep eating so fast.” Bill stopped and looked around the table, a smear of sausage gravy clinging to his chin. He glanced as his plate which was all but licked clean. The waitress stopped and said, “Wow, you must have been hungry. Can I get you something else?” Molly was about to say no thank you when Bill barked, “Flapjacks!” like it was a life or death situation. Aware of the eyes on him but not caring Bill sat waiting patiently, almost, for his flapjacks. When they arrived he made short work of them too. He gulped his coffee and looked around like he had misplaced something. “Bill...are you ok hon?” Molly asked. “You seem a little...off...today. Maybe we should head back to the house.” “Yes,” Bill replied. “Mount up!” The families looked at each other and started to laugh at Bill all excited and acting like a kid again.

Back at the house Bill went straight to the six stones are started poking around. He poured water over the first stone and rubbed it lightly with an old towel. The characters were barely visible but with the right equipment he should be able to read them. The right equipment was a laser surface mapping device that could detect even the slightest change in depth or elevation of surface contours and hopefully read the inscriptions in the stones. Bill called the University and asked for a team of students and the appropriate equipment. When he mentioned extra credit, the students lined up for the chance to help with the dig. “You know, I can kind of imagine what it was like here 150 years ago Bill.” “Oh yeah?” Bill asked. Kirk told Bill about the dream he had the night before. “The tattoo obviously has some significance since it figured so prominently in the dream, but I dont know offhand what it might be. “Do you remember anything else” Bill asked. “Nothing. The dream was fading away as I woke up. The more awake I got the less I remembered.”

“Professor Jansen, I mapped all six stones and I think I got characters on five of them but the sixth one has me stumped. All I got from that one is a figure that looks like an ice cream cone.” “Huh?” was all Bill could say. “Let me take a look at that.” As he approached the table he saw the character from the opposide side as the student. It wasn't an ice cream cone, it was a pyramid with a rounded bottom. A shiver went down Bill's spine as he held the print up and looked at it. It was exactly like the tattoo Kirk had just described on the union soldiers hand in his dream.

Continued...




posted on Apr, 30 2015 @ 10:02 PM
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a reply to: Vroomfondel

Tom was working on that very stone, grunting a bit as he tried to wiggle it free. Bill kneeled down opposite Tom and said, “Let me help you” and reached for the stone. “NO!” Tom yelled so loud Bill fell backwards as if from the force of his voice alone. In a flash, Tom was leaping through the air with a pick hammer swinging down at his father's head. A shovel sliced the air between the two and the hammer clanged to a halt. Bill found himself staring down the pick end of the hammer, the tip just inches from his nose. Tom fell backwards as if pulled by some unseen force. Sobbing pathetically, “Oh God, Oh God. I almost killed you. It was like I didn't know who you were, only that if I didn't kill you, you would kill me. I really wanted to kill you. It was like I didn't know you, but I hated you anyway.” Everyone sat motionless for a moment, when Bill broke the silence. “I think we have done enough for today. Thank you everyone for coming. Take the day off tomorrow and we will meet back here Monday morning.”

“I don't know whats happening Danielle. First Bill, now Tom. My family is going nuts and I have no idea why or how to stop it.” Molly dabbed at the corners of her eyes with a tissue. “You kow how crazy those two are over civil war stuff. This is right up their alley.” Danielle tried her best to sound reassuring. “Crazy?” said Molly. “OK, poor choice of words, but you know what I mean.” Danielle wondered if she should tell Molly about the dream she had had the night before but decided against it. One loony family was more than enough to deal with.

When Molly had calmed a bit Danielle went for a walk to think through the day's events. She was tapping at an old plow blade in the barn with the toe of her boot thinking that the weekend was off to a really good start. It sounded like fun at first, but it was just getting downright weird and she didn't want any part of it. “I have to get out of here,” Danielle said out loud. “Oh yeah?” Kirk answered from directly behind her. Danielle squealed and spun around not having heard Kirk's approach. “I'm sorry Kirk. I know how much it means for you to be here with Bill but, yes. Its been a very strange day and I think I would feel better at home. You know, familiar ground and all that.” “Familiar ground. I know what you mean. This place is very familiar to me,” Kirk said looking curiously at the objects in the old barn. “Like I was here yesterday,” Kirk said with a far off look in his eyes. Danielle was looking at Kirk but seeing someone else. “I have to find Bill,” Danielle said and started toward the door. She heard a strange pinging sound, then everything fell silent.

Tom and Grant were on the back porch listening to music. “Funny how real that was,” Tom said. “I knew I was doing it but it didn't feel like me.” “Weird,” Grant said. “But thats nothing new for you.” “Haha. You didn't just try to kill your own dad.” “Sorry, man. I didn't mean it like that. What did it feel like?” “It felt kinda like now,” Tom said. It took Grant a few seconds to realize what Tom was saying. He would have needed a few more seconds to react in time, but he didn't have them.

Bill walked into the kitchen and found Molly there alone. “Rough day, huh.” Molly looked at Bill wondering what was going through his mind. “Something strange is happening here Molly. We both know Tom would never hurt me. Not in a million years. But today I think he would have killed me if Kirk hadn't stopped him. I don't konw what to make of it.” Bill stood staring at the floor as if the old boards held some clue to his son's strange behavior. He walked toward the sink to get a glass of water and heard a shuffling sound behind him. He turned to find Molly, arm raised over her head with a butcher knife poised ready to swing down onto his neck. Instead of attacking, Molly gasped and seemed frozen in place until she slowly slid to the floor revealing Kirk behind her, holding a knife of his own. Bill stood there in shock looking at the ruined body of his wife laying on the floor in front of him. “Thats twice now I have saved your life,” Kirk said. “What the hell is happening Kirk?” Bill asked without taking his eyes off of his wife. “In some societies, that would mean your life belongs to me now Bill.” Kirk's words stung as they landed. Bill looked up just in time to see Kirk lunging at him. Bill ducked and Kirk swept past him embedding the knife in the wall. His momentum carried him past Bill and well beyond the strength of the knife blade as it broke off clean at the hilt. Bill lowered a shoulder into Kirk knocking him down and ran out the door and up to his bedroom. He could hear Kirk following behind. He locked the bedroom door and heard Kirk slam into it just a moment later. Bill dug through the chest at the foot of the bed as quickly as he could. “It has to be here, damn it.” Bill cursed and rummaged through the keepsakes he and Molly had collected over the years. His fingers touched something that felt familiar. The sound of the door frame cracking tore through the room. Bill barely had time to turn and squeeze the trigger, not even checking to see if the gun was loaded. Fortunately for Bill, it was. Kirk stared at Bill with an almost apologetic look on his face as he slid into oblivion. It occurred to Bill that none of the people he knew so well were acting like themselves. And it all started when they found the tombstones. Even he had acted out of character but he felt like his normal self. Why him and not the others? What happened to them that was so different? Bill's common sense was grappling with his experiences that day and neither was gaining an advantage over the other. It just didn't make sense. The fierceness of the hatred in their eyes was too real. It was like they were possessed or something. The thought rocked him like a 7.0 on a richter scale. They were possessed.

Just as Bill arrived at his explanation for the day's strange events Tom came through the door. “I'm sorry son.” Bill began to cry as he pulled the trigger. He knew his son would not stop until one of them was dead. And he knew even if he escaped, the attacks would continue if he didn't end it now. He did what he knew he had to do and destroyed himself in the process.

Bills mind slowly fractured as he carried the bodies to the tombstones. He dug five more graves and buried his friends and family in line with the graves of the soldiers. Eleven in all now. Bill cleared the spot where the twelvth grave would go and carved in the dirt sitting atop it.

Continued...



posted on Apr, 30 2015 @ 10:05 PM
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a reply to: Vroomfondel

When he finished Bill called the police and told them he had just killed and buried his family and friends. He knew that he too had been at least partially possessed. If that took hold as it did with the others, the violence would never end. He had done the right thing. He had destroyed his family, his friends, and himself, but who knows how many lives he saved in the process?

The students were just showing up for the day's dig as Bill collapsed in a heap near the freshly dug graves. Some of the students were crying, others in shock. Police sirens echoed in the distance. Bill knelt in the dirt sobbing saying, “I had to...I had to...” over and over.

Detective Warren had seen a lot of things in his long career, but nothing like this. The CSI team was there in full force taking pictures, carefully bagging evidence, interviewing the students. Bill had been cuffed and mirandized and, sitting in the back of a squad car, made a full confession to all the murders. He would not let his beloved family be remembered as killers, only victims.

Detective Warren watched the last bits of dirt as they were cleared away from the first fresh grave. He looked at the students and said, “You archeological students know a lot about ancient burials. How much do you know about recent ones?” “We haven't had a lot of experience with this kind of stuff,” One of the students answered. “Let me show you something,” the detective said. “See where the shovel cut the clay there? Those striations were made when the blade pushed through the clay. If you can see those, you can be sure they were made less than 24 hours ago. Of course, if its raining all bets are off, but it hasn't rained here in almost two weeks.”

“Detective, come take a look at this,” one of the investigators said from the other end of the row of graves. “It looks like these two are fighting.” Sure enough, the sword of one of the soldiers seemed to be thrust toward the head of the other who seemed to be parrying the move with his rifle. “Now that is something you don't see every day. It really does look like they're fighting.” “That would make sense,” said the student who had spoken earlier. “These three are Union and these three are confederate.” “Well I'll be... Dead 150 years and still fighting.” One of the students gently lifted the sword from it's resting place and failed to notice the clearly defined striations in the clay that lay beneath it. “Ya'll reckon that's what happened?” the student asked. His friends started laughing. None of them had ever heard a man with a Boston accent say “Ya'll” before.

The detective stopped at the place where the twelfth grave would have been and wondered why someone had drawn a picture of an ice cream cone in the dirt.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 12:32 AM
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Started to read this and it looks really good, but it's late and I haven't slept yet so will get to it tomorrow.

Oh it IS tomorrow. LOL Later then.

edit on 1-5-2015 by Night Star because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 02:17 PM
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Wow! Good story!



posted on May, 2 2015 @ 04:57 AM
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S&F



posted on May, 3 2015 @ 05:13 AM
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a reply to: Vroomfondel

Multiple Stars and a Flag!



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 02:28 PM
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a reply to: Vroomfondel

Great story, you write really well. I like the idea of 'echoes' in time, wherever there was an intense event.

S&F from me too!



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 07:07 PM
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a reply to: Night Star

Thank you.




posted on May, 6 2015 @ 07:07 PM
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a reply to: 727Sky
Thank you.




posted on May, 6 2015 @ 07:08 PM
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a reply to: SyxPak

Thank you.




posted on May, 6 2015 @ 07:08 PM
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a reply to: beansidhe

Thank you. I liked that echo effect too.





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