Excerpt from Bestich’s Red Journal…

I battle the Beast today. Not the Beast upon the hill foretold in prophecy. Not the Beast beneath the bridge that Ma would pin us to our beds with. Today I battle myself upon the cinder rock the priest calls my soul. For here in the dark cellar of Madame Truss’s, where so many an impoverished imp has spent his seed for small coins, I battle two wills: the will to be a man and the gargantuan inevitable will of the Beast.

You cannot know this battle. For you, dearest reader, are not cursed as I. You cannot imagine this battle. You cannot blur the lines between what is you and what is so not you. Just as I, cannot peer from this page up to you and see your eyes pulling my words into your mind.

Are you not afraid as my mind is writ upon the pristine page, besmirching its bleached plane with black ooze that flows up through the ether into your thoughts? One drop of ink in a cup of water clouds and mars its virgin shine. My thoughts are the sewer that spews into your garden pond. My story, blackened and tanned, will meander past your nasal passages and lodge in your throat. Read on.

The small red stone before me glows and beckons. It is a prime. If I pick it up it will fulfill all my desires and make my worst fears real. It will torture me. It will lead to the death of all I love. But I will not die. Not today, nor tomorrow, or ever. I will bend the world to my will or break it. I will be like a crucible burning off the impurities of humanity, and remaking humanity in my image, under my holy heel.

Blink. The battle is over. The beast has won. I take the blighted icor chamber knowing it will own me more than I will own it.

Now I will tell you my secret and you too can be remade in my image. I will infect your soul to become as putrid as my own. Burn with me!

The rest of this transcript has been sealed by order of the Butcheart library.

photograph of a burning fire
Photo by moein moradi on

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