Posts Tagged ‘Cthulhu’

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PseudoPod 540: The Dog Pit


by Jason Fischer

 


The Dutchman finally found the boy out on the gold diggings.

Being close to seven feet tall and as broad as an axe-handle at the shoulders, Cornelius Tesselaar was an instant curiosity in that place of mud and slap-shacks. His frock-coat and good boots spoke of a man more used to cobbled streets than a fossicker’s warren. He wore a top-hat, the good silk kind, and peered around him through a pair of expensive bifocals that by themselves would earn him a knifing if he stayed too long.

A quiet word and a handful of coins led Cornelius to the nearest opium den. He swept open the hessian sack that served as a doorway, and stood blinking at the thick cloud of smoke that drifted out.

“Toby Jangles,” the Dutchman boomed, striding inside. A dozen faces stared blankly at the man, even as he stepped over their sprawled bodies. One or two furtive shapes slinked away from the doorway, creeping into the furthest shadows of the clapboard shack.

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PseudoPod 527: We Are Not These Bodies, Strung Between The Stars

Show Notes

Pseudopod wants to direct your attention to a project by one of our Authors, Greg Stolze. This is a good time to go back and relisten to episode 317, Enzymes.

YOU is a novel, set in the universe of the democratic horror game Unknown Armies, which pits readers against a book that hates them while situating them in the person of a middle-aged businessman named Leo Evans.

Leo is divorced, a fan of racquet sports, and a cultist of the Necessary Servant—a quasi-religion he freely admits seems silly, except for the way it grants him extra senses and paranormal abilities. The chief cultist, however, is his ex-wife, and the two of them clash over a key question of what it means to truly “serve” with integrity.

In the process of hashing all this out, Leo must survive a couple attempts on his life, come to grips with an enchantment that makes him hate the person he previously loved most, and deal with lingering issues between himself and his son.

This novel is Kickstarting in February, check the trailer at www.gregstolze.com/you


by A.C. Wise

 


“I’m one of the ones who remembers what it was like before R’lyeh rose. Before New Orleans sank. Before Venice burned. When Mi Go first screamed through the space between the stars, and when Shoggoths last in the dooryard bloomed. For the record, it doesn’t make me one of the lucky ones.”

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PseudoPod 526: The Great American Nightmare

Show Notes

“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” – Plato

“They who can give up essential liberty for temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” – Benjamin Franklin


The Great American Nightmare

by Moaner T. Lawrence


The sky over 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue was clear and blue at 12:00PM EST on Friday, January 20th, 2017. At 12:01, a fleet of Secret Service byakhee swarmed over the abstract visage of what was once The White House. Faster and faster, they beat their jet black wings, until the unholy force tore a hole in the sky. It became a swirling vortex, and the composer Erich Zann, considered missing for over 120 years, began conducting a chorus of six-foot albino penguins, alongside the United States Marine Band to a discordant rendition of Hail, Columbia. Opposite the band, a crowd of three million attendants held fast to a double-reinforced security railing, or anything else they could grab onto, so as to bear witness to the spectacle before them without being sucked into the portal forming above.

PseudoPod 487: Inky, Blinky, Pinky, Nyarlathotep


Inky, Blinky, Pinky, Nyarlathotep

by Nick Mamatas


Newspace was a lot like old space. Well, posters of old space stacked atop one another and constantly shuffled and re-shuffled. In the little waffle-iron spacecraft was the thunderous Niagara, any number of mansions on emerald hills, all piled up in a corner with Escheresque staircases going downwise and anti-spinward, marmalade skies and airships in the shape of giant, open-mouthed fish, the Pyramids of Egypt poking out from every horizon, and long, dark hallways in blue-and-purple neon everywhere, absolutely everywhere, as this is what the New Ones thought VR would look like, back when they were all children.

And the New Ones had fun playing like children. As it turns out, virtually all problems faced by Humanity, save the million-year war with the Old Ones, were resource problems. No Old Ones, no resources, no problems. Virtually no problems, anyway, which is an awful pun, it’s true. So, the New Ones spent their days naked and immortal, writing songs no fleshy ear could comprehend, inventing new languages to describe disembodied emotional states, engaging in virtual nucleic exchange and reproducing wildly to the humming databases, with beings unheard of and indescribable.

The waffle iron was busy, too. Zipping around space and whatnot, eating dark matter and printing copies of itself, in case something happened to it. And oh, yes, something was happening to it. Naturally, the poor little waffle iron didn’t quite understand that the something happening was the drive to laze-lathe meteoroids into replicas of itself. Oh, and then, within the guts of the waffle iron, ghosts started showing up everywhere, upsetting and terrifying the New Ones with their googly eyes and their siren howls. And they loved to eat the New Ones. Beautiful, tow-headed, pink children with cloth diapers and bows in their wispy hair. Lovely children with rich, brown skin and smiles to light up a room. Obnoxious children who sat on the couch all day, pretending to kill with their minds for fun. Children who flailed their hands about and slammed their heads against the wall because they saw the wrong kind of penny. Ghosts were indiscriminate—the ugly and the exquisite both were consumed, leaving naught but wrinkled husks behind.

You have to realize that words like eyes and children, and even husks, make little sense; it’s being dumbed down for you and the quaint bag of chemical reactions you keep in that bone bowl. We’re talking a density matrix, here. So, when a character is introduced, as one is about to be, understand that you’d be just as accurate, were you to imagine her as a blurry, yellow ball of light floating around in a black field, instead of as a person. Which is to say, you’d be much more accurate, after all.

PseudoPod 443: Watchers

Show Notes

“Very little of this is made up. The coastwatchers on Leserser were there  as described – as was I, half a century later.”


Sounds used in this episode:


Watchers

by Lavie Tidhar


1.

The city is buried deep under the South Pacific ocean, and that is all I want to tell you about it.

In 1942 South Pacific Command was established on the island of New Caledonia following the hurried departure of its French colonial administration. Nouvelle Caledonie, unlike the other islands of Melanesia, was not volcanic. It was, in fact, the sole remnant of an entire sunken continent called Zealandia, a fragment of the once-mighty Gondwanaland.

There had been monsters on New Caledonia, before humans came. Meiolania, a giant horned turtle, two and a half meters long with an elongated skull and multiple horns protruding from of it. Or the Sylviornis, an almost two meters tall, flightless bird with a long reptilian tail. Or the enormous, armoured Mekosuchus crocodiles.

Real monsters, all of them. But when the humans came, when the ancient Lapita people crossed the ocean in their giant canoes, they settled the islands, and they killed the monsters.

I was not in New Caledonia. I was with III Island Command, first on Espiritu Santo and then on Vanua Lava, in the islands of the New Hebrides.

PseudoPod 318: Venice Burning


Venice Burning

by A.C. Wise


A floating city, a sinking city, a drowned city; there isn’t much difference, really.

When R’lyeh rose, it rose everywhere, _everywhen_. Threads spiral out, stitching past to present to future. There are ways to walk between, if you’re willing to lose a part of yourself. Most people aren’t; it’s my specialty.

I stand on a pier, eyes shaded against the water’s glare. It’s 2015, by the smell – diesel and cooked meat, early enough that such things still exist. It might as well be 2017, or 3051. But this year is where my client is, so I wait, sweating inside a black, leather jacket, watching slick weeds stir below lapping waves.