Postman Diaries (Working Title) is an interactive fiction told through the medium of letters. Set just before World War I, it is about the stories of five individuals whose letters do not reach the desired recipients, but instead are replied to by the postman (you) of a town.
You can find below one set of letters (without replies and only singular story line) by Lisa, and more letters by the different characters here.
Letters from Lisa
"Unspoken tales of the forsaken girls", as we used to call them, our little adventures, that ended all of a sudden thanks to one girl who ran away from it all, her home, her town, her stories and her life. I am no stranger to life, I know the town must have celebrated that I finally caved in and ran away from life. I do not want them to know I am alive and well. it will only sadden them, lessen their victory over a little girl. I only want you to know, Beth, because I know you were the only one bitter and sad when I ran away and I know your heart is racing right now while reading this letter. I just hope you will forgive me for running away from you too. Believe me, but I was afraid that if I told you, you might join me in my escape. that little "home"town hadn't been kind to you either. Hometown, what a weird name for a place where you are born out of fate and not out of choice. Honestly, to think of it, nothing would have been nicer than running away together, beth, it may just have been perfect, but no, I could not put little Adrian into the danger of living a runaway's life. i am sure you would have thought the same, the Beth that you always were, loving and caring even to me. Oh, how many times I have gone through that moment in my head, beth, when I passed your cold little house on my way to the train station that night. I saw you and Adrian inside and I saw you get up as if you knew I was around. Afraid you would see me peeking in, I kissed your window and ran, Beth, ran tearing through the wind so hard that my tears dried before they could hit the ground. i did not want to leave the slightest trail behind me, not even my tears, for I was afraid it would make you weak and you might follow me. I ran through the tears, I ran through the wind, I ran with the train, I ran till I fell and broke my arm and then I ran withh the pain. Atleast now my tears had a real pain to draw from and I could cry my heart out. I wanted to be empty, Beth, empty before I reached the city. Empty of all the past hate, pain, regrets and loves. So, i cried, I cried that night out of my life.
I left the town as Eugene and reached the city as Lisa, from our "unspoken tales". Lisa, a new person with a new destiny of her won. God had made Eugene, I made Lisa. God had no work here, i was my own creator. I dropped everything of my old life, of Eugene, in Lisa but I kept you, Beth. that one flicker of light to keep me anchored in this new world and knowing you, you are not one that can be erased so easily. I had decided then that I would write back to you once Lisa would have her own existence and here I am beth, after more than 10 years. Only now, I am Lisa Monarch.
As I said earlier. I am "alive and well", and its true in the objective sense of both the words. Also, Beth, I am a prostitute in th ebiggest brothel of the city and that is how Lisa's "tale" begins.
Call me Lisa now.
I cannot tell you how good it feels to just know you are there in life again, however far you may be. I do not know how you feel about me being a broad in the city but, I guess, one of the easiest way to think around it would be to think it's Lisa who is a broad, the friend from a previous life was Eugene. That sure helped me in the beginning. Running away from reality was never your way of life, I know, for that gave me the most strength even back then. You showed me that the easiest way to conquer fear was to drop the wish to run away from it....and yet I ran away. What a whack I am. But I ran from that life Beth, not from myself. If I even once wished to run away from myself, from what I am, then I would have been a wreck by now. Being a broad in the city isn't something you can be if you cannot look yourself in the eye. if you even slightly wish to not be yourself here, you will crumble like a bowl full of a dust in a single moment. This brothel cannot kill me and this world cannot keep me alive, it is only I, Lisa Monarch, that can !
I choose to be here, beth. I wonder if the thought repulses you, makes you vomit your sanity out for a moment, like it does to the world. I hope it doesn't or I will have to assume that the world got you too and I find that impossible to believe. The beth I know was an anchor even when she was a child and I am sure you are anchor to many even now.
The brothel is not as bad as the world or lets say the world isn't much better than this brothel. You can read that again the other way around too. Out there, there are no rules for an outsider like me, no rooms, no food, only animals on the prowl. In here, I get paid and I choose to be paid only when I am hungry. Even if it is rape, am raped only when I ask to be raped. Even in all this madness, there is a "consent" that is missing in the world outside and there is food, a room to call home and warm nights at the other end of the rape. Out on the streets, it is just rape and the only mercy that may follow is that someone might just kill you at the end of it all. its wolves inside and out, wherever you may go beth. The brothel is a sanctuary in this jungle called the world.
No, i do not worry foor a single moment about what I have become, physically or mentally. I am as sane a person as I always was and as sick and disfigured a mind as I always was to the world. i work and I eat, like all who come to eat me here, If anyone is to be judged, I would judge the jingle, not myself.
How is it with you and Adrian? I am not the least bit worried about Adrian, you know, after all he is under your care. But how are you ? DO you find it strange that I never asked about you? You aren't the judgemental kind or has the world made you one?I will not ask, Beth, because its all small talk. When someone wants to tell, all one needs is a listener. I did not ask you if you would listen to me after all these years, I spoke and I feel I don't have to ask you to talk. If you want to, I will always listen.
I always listen, Beth, because everyone seems to be dying to tell. Everyone has the answers untill you actually sit down to listen, because when you do, they feel powerless, deflated,as they have none.
Its a lie everyone tells oneself and wants others to believe, that they know. I am no stranger to life, Beth, they know nothing, all of them, no one. and I find it wonderfully entertaining when I agree to listen only for them to realise they have nothing to tell. A few lines of excited babble, passionate outburts, self-pitying drama and their words dry up and fall down like empty shells, ringing in the silence. They are left gaping at the walls or floor or the window, powerless and lost....and for that moment I feel such a rush, a palpable satisfaction ! For that one moment this city broad, a prostitute, sits at a higher pedestal and looks down at the spent shell in front of her. The powerplay turns around, just a moment ago he had bought me out and trodden over me and now here he sits, empty and hollow. Outplayed by a prostitute. Lisa is ruthless sometimes, Beth, and it is beautiful. They see themselves in the mirror for a moment in life and you see the pretence and ego crumble like dust.
Of course, all doesn't go well all the time. SOme of them even fail to see their own failings, pitiable creatures that they are and some cannot take this feeling of being stripped naked in front of a woman of low repute, to come face to face with their truth in a place as disgusting as a brothel and they storm out. Some beat me back but I always charge money for my time and in that I win again.
It is always a fancy to see them returning later, if they do. Most do not but, when they rape me the next time, I watch closely whether they keep their eyes shut or they stare at me. I have won the ones who do and those who don't. For those who close their eyes have surrendered to my game and come here to seek solace, to shed the pretence. They are mine now and will keep coming to me. I am their temple, their church,their truth.. Those who stare at me are playing again to see this broad crack up and they will keep trying, and I will always charge for my time.
...and I will always listen, Beth, if people have something to say....and they always have.
Who says broads can't have fun ! We just had a party, a party full of whores, Ha ha ! The ones people dream of, I am sure. Well, I can tell the world now that it is ever bit fun ! Maybe not the way they want but with all the business going on around here all the time, it was a relief to realise that even a brothel can rise above the "clawing of life at one's innards" to actual carefree happiness !
It is amazing to see them all happy, beth, it is a revelation of sorts. It sure takes a push of elixirs of different kinds to make the girls replace the cynic, sarcastic, lusty smiles with ones of carefree gay abandon, the smiles of their childhood and ones of old age. The girls were real today, Clara, the seductress of the rich and old, was a little girl today and I couldn't make her stop dancing. She tripped and fell and got right back up to dance ! Oh , the darling she is, no one understood what she was singing, some song she remembered from her home, a song she wanted to be when she grew up. I think she is still that little girl waiting to grow up when she gets out of here. Living her dreams, she was today. Is that all that remains of us after we shed ourselves: our dreams ?
Leena was talking of business empires and what not, guess she might head a brothel someday. Melisaa said, brothels were temples of fullfillment and joy and someday htey shall be the temples of love too. Ah, how noble! That set out a collective wave of laughter so hard that it shook the whole party and renewed it with a new found vigour. The poor Goddess of the temple started crying though, she couldn't take the happiness ? eh !
Oh and me, I drank and I smoked and I swam through the whole ocean otday, knocking at each door and shouting, "Ahoy ! murky ones, wash ye self in the air ye breathe ! For the murk is of the ones who fish here, not of the fish ye see ! Cheers !" I wonder where that came from. Maybe the whiskey helped the swashbuckling pirate Capn' inside me to take over ! Ahoy, Beth, lets charge ! It was like the "unspoken Tales" again !
A fine day it was and is, till the dawn of tomorrow dawns ! Oh, I forgot to tell you what it was all about. We were celebrating the escape of Merkel, the witch, who was bought by some Duke with some big name to serve as his mistress wherever it is he lives. Merkel says she will get a new name and a title and all the bullshit that comes with a life in the outside society. All we could imagine was her with diapers, potties and bosoms full of milk ! Oh, how she spat at us ! ha Ha ! But here's not much you can do to stop a brothel full of braods when they decide to have fun at your expense. I just hope Merkel, the witch, gets all that and more before wrinkles show up and her witchcraft fades. A wench is a wench, in here or out there and Merkel will be no exception. Only, in here are we oblivious to the edicts and ethics of the society and immune to their judgements. In here, in our home.
The only reason I am writing today is because there is nothing to do here tonight. Don't even need to have dinner , well, because there is none. No man to feast on me and none for me to eat off. Two hungers that feed off each other, one of opulence and other of oppression. If I don't feel hunger, the wolf doesn't get to satiate his and if the wolf doesn't feel his vile hunger, I don't get to eat. Someday, this may turn into a fine ballad or a classic ! ha !
Maybe you should ask Adrian to write a story on this. Wouldn't that be a strange one: The World through the Eyes of a Prostitute! Imagine that. i am sure people will prefer to poke the eyes on the cover and burn the book than read through it. Laughing that maniacal laugh that you hear when the wolf crucifies the sheep. Denial is all that they have for us outside and yet the pour into our brothel everyday.
What am I thinking, this is definitely not what we would want to happen to Adrian's first book, would we. Now that I think of it, How is Adrian doing , beth? Does his writing appear in any magazines? Do tell me, I can ask Terry to get it for me or grab one when I am out on the errands for woman-things. He did have a nasty little head, the little bugger that he was. I would love to read his poems, its been a long time. Remember the one he wrote during better days and wouldn't stop chanting while playing int that backyard? I would go on and on untill I would agree to join in the singing :
"There is a spring in my stride,
A swell in my pride,
A future unshaken i see...
Of applauses and ovations,
Hands shaken and salutations,
For Adrian, a cheery fellow,
Thats me !"
Oh, the big words of the little guy. I was sure he understood none of it and he would get all winded up at that. Oh that gave us a good laugh back then. Good old times, can i say? At least for me yyes, these memories provide a good respite from hunger. Maybe, remembering Eugene once in a while isn't that bad. I keep it limited to only when I write to you though. You never know ehn you lose the grip on reality. For the rest of the day and night, swimming in the delirium of grunts and pushes of themen, I stay the steely and cold Lisa Monarch: Chin High, neckline deep, a mirk on th elips and a body still as a stone. Not an ounce of emotion except now, when I write to you. You know, I will stop writing if it even as much as hints of making me weak in my work. It doesn't yet, in fact, it re-instates, rejuvenates the Lisa inside me. I guess, just like my body sleeps in the bed, my mind and heart sleep in these letters to you, Beth. Its my own little bed time ! funny, that its you who gets to hear all the stories !
Do you also read me at bedtime, Beth?
(arrives with a delay)
Took sometime to write this one because, well, I got beaten up a bit. A bit isn't the right word perhaps, getting beaten up in a brothel isn't about a slap or two, mind you. Terry didn't know, of course, but the bastard paid for my time only to beat me up. I took off my bottoms and removed his belt and , oh boy. The rascal took the belt and started. Was here just to beat a protitute, so brave! Wonder what kindof redemption he was looking for in his sick pious mind. Clara joked later that he must have caught his own visiting paradise to have set him off on this quest to pass judgement. I say, why does th emuck of the world come here to us to clean themselves? Don't they bloody have churches for that?
Broke my arm and was such a righteous knight of the lightthat he did not even have a go at me ! Oh come on, you shrimp, this is a brothel not a place to show off your piousness. Fucking me isn't a crime here, that is what I give consent for, but beating me up is ! That is a crime and he was guilty here not the others whoi did I what gave permission for. Told him right in his face, the empty cannon that he was ,went white as a sheet. The look on his face, Beth. Guess he didn't realise that a wench is a woman and not a piece of furniture and can have a mind and speak it too. I made sure his silly redemption turned into mine. Confounded, he ran out breathing a storm, huffing and puffing. I guess, he lost his voice trying to make sense of the world in here...or maybe out there. Who knows what made the buffoon puff like an engine as he sotmed out maidst the hullabulloo.
Broke my arm, this damned world, again they broke my arm. I am not afraid of pain, beth, I can stop feeling pain at will, that is the way of our world. its the arm, it is the same arm , Eugene's arm, that broke all those years ago. An this pain brings back Eugene. Lisa can numb her pain, but Eugene can't....and it hurts the whole night.
Clara is sleeping by my feet as I write this. The little darling she is, she brought me some whiskey to dull my pain. Why o why do you care for em so much,Clara? You are a wench, Clara, don't be a woman now.
Like I told you, Beth, I listen, I listen a lot. Even when people think I am done for with their pounding, I keep listening. and we hear such things here, Beth, sitting int this cocoon though we are. Its funny how the whole world unfolds itself here, one way or the other. No one wants us to know anything, yet here they tell us all. Though not one comes here for love, one cannot really separate the act from the emotion totally. Patrons can't help but feel a bit soft in their heads after their bodies let go of the leashes that the world binds them to. As their bodies soften after the stiff jostling, so do their minds. Sometimes the sight of tender skin breathing after the effort is enough to make them feel its harmless to talk, considering we never leave the place. Other times we are considered too dumb to comprehend,the lumps of meat that we are, and the secrets flow. All of them are weak in one or the other, I don't think I have ever seen a real man of substance in here, visited by all the ranks of the world as we are. Come to think of it, a man who is truly strong in head wouldn't succumb to such a meaningless desire, to rub himself with another person, to take control of him, to take power over him, as to force him to such a place. Wimps s they all are who visit here, they speak. We hear batting our eyelids if we want to hear more or we hear like a dusty doormat if that suits the speaker. We hear, as it provides us with needed entertainment, and they speak. SOmetimes it takes a few visits for them to begin, but eventually we see as much of their minds as they get to see our bodies. Tales of ambition, mockery, wives, girlslove, egos, work, bosses, travels and, for sometime now, a War! The war that seems to spreading all over the world. The Empire is not in it yet, but out there the wWorld seems to have gotten down to business. Men talk of it regularly now. Terry says that the Empire should join in too. He says it will bring chaos and that is what the world needs. I told him to bring ghe world to us, they can have their choas here and we shall get fat as pigs for once.
Terry was joking, I am sure, why would anyone want to join a fight? Atleast, I won't. It is never worth it, unless its your own, even then it just hurts. I am sure our dear Terry doesn't even what the world is fighting for, all gung ho to join nonetheless. Did you hear about it yet, beth? Is it in th e newspapers?
I may not write for some time now. It is getting difficult to get money out of men these days, they just won't pay! Its the war they say, it has made all people misers in apprehension of difficult times. Doesn't stop them from coming here though, the bastards are just using the excuse to pay less and less each day. I don't know what to think, on one hand I am angry they are using the excuse of war to pay less, on the other hand I just hope the urge to enter a woman stays strong even in the shadow of looming death. THe Empire hasn't even joined the frugal war yet , Beth, I wonder if the bastards will ask us to do them for free if it happens. "In the name of Empire, offer your services to the distraught citizens pained by war ! Ha !" Come to think of it, what if they actually ask us to, can they? No, no, I sure hope they cannot. I am sure a dying man only values food and shelter and flaunts all possible virtues to please the keeper of the next life and not desire naked women. BUt what if we are made to work soldiers? Will the empire provide us with food if we serve our beleaguered soldiers? It wouldn't be bad at all, after all what purpose does a brothel in a time of war when you can rape whatever you want anyways. We will know only when the war becomes our business. I hope if it is to happen, it happens soon and ends sooner. I don't like this new equation. I like to be in command of my life and business.
Looks like the games of the world are reaching our shores now. Clara, Bennet, Melissa, all brood over what would happen if the enemy enters the city. What they would do. There was this odd cuckoo two days back who got the idea that he was screwing over the nemey while screwing Leena and wne t just a bit overboard in the pushing and shoving. Leena, th warrior princess, awoke from her enslaved slumber and knocked him out cold "Just like our soldiers would knock out the Enemy!", to say it in her own words. The poor sod had to be carried out by Terry and his men. We have all been calling her Coporal General Leena since then and Terry proclaimed her as a perfect example of why the Empire should join the war :because we can win it. Even our women can knock the enemy out cold with bare hands! What do you say to that, Beth? A regiment of the Wenches ! I am ready to enlist I say. We anyways know best how to survive even when the world doesn't want you around. It would be anyways much better than what is in store for us if it really rains wars here.
Just yesterday, I took Terry's bicycle to go get some women-things for myself and caught some old men staring at me with glaring eyes. Guess who I saw among them, the old righteous bum who had beaten me up at brothel the other day. To be honest,Beth, I was scared . I wasn't in the brothel, I was out there in the jungle, amongst the wolf with their vicious rules about any and everyone. They were glaring at me, Beth, like they would put me up on a stake and burn me. For a moment I was scared, Beth, but then I did not make Lisa to get scared. So I gathered my tampoons, turned around and walked straight towards them staring right back into the righteous eyes of the city. They went limp like the spent guns they were , scurried like little rats as I neared them ready to give them my piece of mind. As if I was some plague ! Heard murmurs of "whore! slut !" rising out of air around me.The righteous old men didn't want to be talked to by a whore in full public view, I guess I also must have made a impression on him back at the brothel. They skittled, fell and ran as Empire's propaganda papers fell from the sky proclaiming
"The Empire stands tall,
Its the petty who fight"
What amazing timing Empire?
Heard a few laughs from kids and young boys as they saw the old rats scuttle. I hope he was some big shot in the locality. it would make me very happy if his image takes a hit from running away from a broad in full public view. Will ask Terry about it, might just spread some word around that the old man visits here often to add fuel to the fire. Wouldn't that be fun? "through the eyes of a city broad", aye, another one for Adrian, eh, beth?
Need to go now, this war might have made misers out of men, but i am no less hungry than the more opulent days of the world.
The brothel is abuzz with activity today. You can hear the hushed whispers and occassional loud shouts slithering along the walls and roofs of the corridors. The brothel is not a pace of whispers and hushed tones, Beth, the brothel is about losing all pretences, being unabashed, thikning naked in full public view. Its where you do not fake, where you show what you feel unjudged by others, where you grunt and squeal, where you shout and scream. It is NOt a place of conversations, apprehensions and doubt. Yet, today the brothel is draped in a new unknown feeling, a feeling that belongs to the mundane and the ordinary who have families and lives to care about: the feeling of wide eyes and clasped hands, the feeling of fear !
The whole city woke up to streets full of pamphlets of the enemy proclaiming the end of the Empire by their hands. that the Empire was an empty casing, a spent shell past its glory and with no might to actually fight the war and how their army would just romp over the feeble forces of the Empire. The pamphlets even extort people to ask the Empire to surrender to avoid needless death of their own families for a Emperor that does not give a damn about them. We had been reading our own pamphlets for quite a while now about how it were the foolish nations, the petty ones, that are fighting this war but this onslaught of enemy pamphlets right in our streets claiming weakness of the Empire has hit the people hard. How did thier papers reach here? Had th enemy planes flown over the city last night? If so then is the Empire really so weak that they did not even know or could not stop them? Enemy right under our nose? The Empire sure is headed by the Royal family, in their fancy palaces up north, do they even see us toiling in the streets down here across the river?
The place si full of whspers oof enemy showing up in the streets next morning just like the papers have shown up today. Ridiculous if you ask me! Leena says its all business for her, no matter who the client. Someone tell that wimp that the enemy won't pay for a stay between her legs. All kinds of strange talks around, of the kind thats shouldn't be. Some girls say its better to kill oneself than be raped by the enemy, some say its the same enemy or not. Cheryl proclaimed at the top of her voice that she won't offer her treasures to th eenemy and she is to serve only and only her own countrymen. Oh, what noble patriotic feelings from Chery. The old hag she is the only countrymen that ever visited her were either blind or nearly so. I guess sheis feeling relevant again in some way.
I have nothing to say. Once a broad, alway a broad, Beth. Thats all I know, enemy or no enemy.
Terry says if the enemy reaches our gates its time up for us all. Prostitution is not a wartime business, he says, and if the enemy does show up, they would romp through the whole place, ploughing and shooting any wench they like. Said it like it is but I old him what a coward he was. he just said he would change to wartime business or maybe spy for the enemy if that makes him some money. He throws away all caution in my company sometimes. We chat pretty openly, beth, he knows what I am and he knows I don't plan a runaway every night like other girls and that sets us at ease, at a different position than the rest of us here. Everyone needs to loosen up a bit sometimes and he does in my company. Me and Clara, he knows we have no where to go and no desire to go either. Did I tell you Clara's tale, Beth, I will someday. The little one has unspoken tale of her own, the little one shares her room with me.
I have never really told you about this place I call home, Beth, have I? Its a small half of a room, an envy of all others because its not the same room in which we do our "business". By "we" I mean me and Clara who sleeps on the bunker bed above mine. Like the little girl she always is, she wanted the upper bed when Terry offered us this little room to stay in that was used to store coal earlier. The walls and the floor are as black as the desires of this world and the room just swallowed me up in its darkness when we first entered it. We were both delighted, to the surprise of Terry. You see, Terry is a bit more generous to us because he doesn't worry about us running away from the brothel. So he gave us a separate room to "Live" in and that is a luxury no one else gets here: A bunker bed, a mirror right opposite and all enveloping darkness! When i come here to sleep it gets so dark that I cannot even see my hands. I close my eyes, open them, close them again and it feels the same. The darkness is complete, the same with eyes closed or open. No wonder both of us loved it instantly. Its like an anonymous nameless place right in the middle of the all the muck. There I go dreaming again, eh, Beth.
So, me and Clara, like I said both have nowhere to go, so to speak. I, because I know I will not be accepted wherever I may go. There is no place I can be Eugene, only you know that and now Terry does. As for Clara, well, that little girl was plaucked from her home when she was so young that she has no idea where she is from. The only memory she carries of herself is the song she remembers from her home, the one she sings and no one understands. Her sultry hazel coloured eyes and her foreign accent makes her feel exotic to the lusty wolves and she always sells for a higher price than all of us and to the more wealthier of the hounds that pound us. Her mystery makes her a more tantalising catch to plunder.
And I, Lisa Monarch, well, I attract all the headstrong power-mongers and the ones out not to play but to conquer. All who plough me get a pair of legs as firm as steel and eyes that plough them back. They come to break me again and again and again. I know they return to see if Lisa, the arrogant, has given up yet.Has she broken yet, has her steely glare softened yet. Has she been conquered? I know th eheady mix of lust and power that I serve, th eones who find it intoxicating return, those who want to win th ebattle return, those who like to be won over return and Lisa stays as steely hard as ever, works tirelessly, cold as steel, numb as a rock. At the end of it all Lisa comes into the all embracing darkness of this room which becomes as big as you want once the door closes and the darkness opens up. Its as if this body, the one that hungers and the one that feeds, just vanishes, melts away...and for once, i become alone, just me, Eugene. No lisa, no prostitute, just this river of thoughts floating in the darkness. I imagine this is what I must be, my soul, my mind, my memories, me which dips in and out of dreams, me that loves , hates, wishes and smiles. Just me, floating in the darkness. I do not know if I close my eyes or keep them open when I dream here. Do I see the dreams or dream them? in that infinite darkness, Lisa goes soft and sleeps for while and Eugene, she wanders like a lost child. Sometimes she kisses a cold window and runs, Sometimes she falls and breaks her arm. Sometimes she just looks at a cold house from afar.....
in that darkness that is Eugene, the arm pains through the night.
Hell this world is a pitysome piece of hell! We are our own worst enemies, we don't really need any enemies. In fact, it feels right that we have the enemy sniffing around the walls for now we can see the true nature of our patriotic and caring countrymen. Ever since the threat of the war seememd more and more real, men have been offering us safe passages to other places to save ourselves from the inevitable rapes and deaths once the war is here. I am counting on the prowess of the Empire but you cannot deny that it will be a fate worse than death for us prostitutes if th enemy managed to enter the city and even I would want to be as far away from here as possible than be a plunder-ground of a man who has a right to plunder with nothing to fear.
The men here know our fear and quite a few have ploughed broads for free with offers that htey would sneak them away later. Terry has been warning all girls against any such foolhardiness but ,lets be honest, we cannot really fall on Terry, our pimp, to save us when all hell breaks lose. He maybe honest to us but outside of that he is as much a pimp as any other. or atleast thats how I always thought he was but today he showed something I did not know he was capable of: Compassion, and for us broads to boot. But the circumstances were not what I would have ever imagined.
This is what happened:
Remember Leena, the goddess of Love and joy? Apparently she could not take the fear any longer and she begged one of her wealthier visitors to get her out of the brothel for a sum of money. He left but on his next visit he said he could not only get hor out of the brothel but out of the city to a little known village in the mountians, where war has no business to reach. But he said he would need more than one woman to agree for him to arrange the escape and buy off the people at the port. So, Leena and her girlfriends gave him their savings and I imagined the guy would never show up again, but he did and surprised us all by buying the girlss off Terry with the very money they had given him! Terry was furious,of course , and there was quite a din in the brothel that day, but eventually , after multiple Leena's outbursts, he agreed and took the money. I imagined he realised it was out of his control now anyways. The res of the girls were noticably nasty all that day. One could hear abuses and heated fights writhing out of corners and crevices of our brothel. Who wouldn't want to run away from the slavery? Except,Me and Clara, we don't seem to have any lofty dreams of life somehow. We seem to feel at home in the solace of that infinite darkness of our room now. But it is true that others do not even get that here.
Our waking darkness was torn apart today when someone with a panting breath, sweat as heavy as a dark cloudy sky and glinting wide open eyes, barged in suddenly. I heard Clara huddle up above me, she didn't scream. I saw the eyes dart around trying to make something out of the pitch darkness. They were Terry's eyes and I asked him what he was upto and to stop breathing like a bull and calm down. He asked us to hush up and just go back to sleep, but we couldn't. We could see something was up. The darkness of our room provides a comforting solace as you cannot feel anyone's eyes on you. Even with three of us in the room, each could feel as if he was alone, lest for the breathing of Terry, but it was his own and that helped him calm down. Alone in the darkness, he told us all.
As Terry had suspected, the generous man had taken Leena and girls to the ship port to sell them off to slavers. Terry and his men saw him take Mercy out of the carriage at the port, to show her to the slavers. She was blindfolded and clam, oblivious to what was happening, probably just happy to breathe real air for once. They made jokes about catching a prized bunch of broads and obviously, felt like testing out whether they would make good slaves or not. They gagged Mercy and took turns together on her as Mercy tried to scream. Two of them pressed her face and knees down into the dirt with their shoes to silence her as the third took his turn to rape and kick her while laughing the maniacal laugh of the rabid wolf. He joked about how he was making sure she remembered hr last job before leaving shores lest she forgets what it was like to be a broad in the city. The bastards were so busy laughing and raping her that they forgot that even a prostitute needs to breathe to keep that bottom firm to enter. They stopped with bewilderment when Mercy, or the part of her that was propped up for their madness, fell limp and she fell to one side, all twisted with the knees and face still clamped under firm boots. They jumped back in horror and the body collapsed to the ground. With Mercy finally free, they could not understand who to slave. The wolf, Beth, the wolf prowls the city. The brothel is a sanctuary in this jungle.
The sight and the act was too much even for Terry. As the slaves shouted at each other in confusion and fought with the generous man that they won't pay for the dead girl, the rest of the girls in the carriage started making a commotion. Amidst all this Terry and his men slipped in to the scene. Terry slit the throat of the generous man, clean from side to side as the blood sprayed the slavers with the colour of their deeds. Terry's knife sliced two more throats , as his men propped the third one up for plunder, just like they had propped up Mercy just a while back. As Leena and the girls freed themselves from the carriage, Terry made one slash and the red knife went redder slitting open the belly, the crotch, the arse and the back, in one ruthless swoop. The shriek that erupted was chilling to the bone and the loudest the night had heard tonight. Blood erupted onto Terry as The girls stepped back in horror. The warm blood rose into the air like little wisps of clouds in the cold night, as if souls rising from the dead. Terry, drenched as he was in the blood of Mercy, a generous man and 3 slavers was carrying the souls of the city on him tonight. the stupor broke with the sound of a police wagon and the girls panicked, creamed and ran from the red man heavy with clotting blood and warm with the wisps of rising souls. Terry's men scuttled as the police wagon neared. Breaking out of the trance Terry took a good look at what was Mercy and her tormentors, indistinguishable as one, and ran, tearing through the wind so hard that the blood dried before the drops could hit the ground. he did not want to to leavev a trail for th eplice to follow. he ran wide eyed at what he had become, he ran with the warm souls rising from his flesh, he ran with the wind, he ran till he fell through my door into this waking darkness that envelopes us all. Where we are all together, yet all alone. Terry asked many questions that night, only the darkness answered.....we are all used to it now.
There is a suffocation in the whole brothel now. War hasn't even reached us yet and a pall of gloom has already descended on us all. There is no news of Lenna and the others or what happened to them. Where are they? Each day I imagine them coming back here but why would they? Its a bloody brothel and God knows what kind of monster Leena imagines Terry to be. Does she think Terry was with those guys in the deal and they had a fight that ended like that? After all it was Terry's place she was escaping in the first place. I don't know how Leena sees it all and doubt I will ever know. Terry is also awfully quiet these days, I don't thikn he knew he was capable of ...you know what. Or is he more troubled now that he knows he cares, cares about us wenches. A pimp is not supposed to, we are objects to be sold, and yet his blood boiled when he saw Mercy being raped that night. What was he even doing there if he didn't care? He doesn't look me in the eye now, nor do I want to see anything there. I am not even sure what to feel right now. Lisa has to stay firm and cold as steel, as always.
But Clara, I do want to know what she is feeling. She stayed huddled up in the bed as Terry told it all in the darkness that night. I did not hear even a gasp from her. Maybe it is good that she heard it all, its something lesser than the madness of war that is yet to come. On the other hand its very scary to know what men can do even without a war to instigate them. I mean, why do we even need an enemy to demonise, we are pretty capable of the deeds ourselves in the Empire city.
I have told Clara to keep shut though, as a precaution, as its a secret only we know here. The papers ran the story of the murder and all the girls here have been unsettled since then. It has dashed the dreams of escape everyone had been fostering. It is as if someone has just put a cage on their thoughts too and that is the most stifling feeling one can have. I have had to go through it ever since I grew up, beth. So stifling that I had to run away.
I might have to do some thinking myself. Everyone is trying to decide what to do when the war hits and I think its a possibility I will have to prepare for too. What should I do before its hell all around? What if I come back to the town, to you? (What would that serve though, except for destroying your life too.)
Clara decided what she wanted to do before the war came to our shores, Beth. I found her with her wish fullfilled. She killed herself. The little canary sings no more.
I don't know what to write , beth, the darkness of my room has lost its magic. It doesn't envelope me anymore, i feel alone in here. Why are men like this , Beth? Why is the world like this? We were never meant o have glorious ends to our lives, we are prostitutes, but why like this? She could have talked to me in the darkness but she talked to the darkness alone and embraced it. The Empire is showering pamphlets delcaring that we, the people of the Empire, are the bearers of the light of the world . What light? the light that shone on Mercy and Leena or the light that blinded the soul of Terry.
We are the bearers of Embers, if anything at all, ready to flare up into a fire at the touch of air. Fire that lights, fire that burns.
I have finally decided what I want to do before the enemy arrives at our gates. I spent a lot of time awake in the darkness tihning about it , about my life, about myself and what I can get back from the world, if I wished to. My life, my time are not something anyone can bring back and my beautiful memories, none can take away. My dignity in society was long before I became Lisa, long ago when the world realised I do not desire like them. I thought and thought a lot till one thought brought a rush to my mind, to my blood. A rush that brought my scattered pieces together and I felt my being relax. I knew what I wanted and it is rare that a man knows what he truly wants at any particular moment and even rares that he wants just one and only one wish to be fullfilled. It is purely pristine that what I wish is within my reach too !
I will need to give a few free rides for it, but I think I can manage to get what I need.
Beth, I am getting a gun.
Hello Beth, my dearest,
The darkness that I embraced in my life has always been around me, it gave me a loneliness that was my only real comfort, to be away from this society's ever prying, ever judging eyes. But now I find comfort that I am not alone, now I feel re assured in this new company. In the pitch black darkness of my room , there is a cold bluw glint beside me now. The gun, it sleeps with me now. A little hint of light of light in this dakness of Lisa Monarch. There is a rush of red in the the cold eyes of Lisa, the unrelenting arrogant wench of Empire City.
Don't worry, beth, I know what I am upto. Making enquiries is easy and hard at the same time as a prostitute, One has acces to all who matter but one is too derided to be taken seriously by them. I had to do all I could but I have found what I was looking for. I hope our valiant patriots keep the enemy away for a few more days. I do not want this to go sour now. For the first time in life, I know what I want and I shall get it.
Beth, my dearest Beth, it is done.
it is done and I reminisce how when we used to be together, you used to be all around me and yet I never felt any eyes straining to read my thoughts. We used to be alone in the world, together.I have my room here: a piece of the dark night plucked fro the sky by Terry. I sat here alone, together with the darkness, for hours and hours today. My wish fullfilled, having done what I set out to do, for once, I felt a pause in my life....and I thought of you ! I thought of you for an eternity today, Beth, I thought of you because after my gun had spoken, my lips spoke your name !
earlier today, I found him in a street behind the trainyard. The one who started it all 9 years ago. 9 years of tormentloathing, abuse and ....Lisa. I stalked the fucker through the alleys, my fellow bearer of the light, the swine, the scum from hell ! The old hag that he was now, he was still doing what he did 9 years ago when he pranced on me behind the train station. There he was again, the same wrinkles of kindness circling around the caring eyes , now perfected with a stoop that came with the age. The perfect image of a kind man. he was sweet talking another hungry and overwhelmed immigrant girl inot eating out of his hands. The wolf at the city gates, the gutter of mankind ! I did not wait for a second, I aimed and shot but missed. The damn gun kicked so high. The girl screamed, just Leena must have too at Terry. The old wolf's eyes went wild. he ran, but I was not going to let my friend run away today ! He must accept my kindness like I did all those years ago. "Lisa! No!" he cried as he fled into the back alleys. Empire city took a new colour in my eyes, all I saw was black and more black and all I craved was red, oh the red ! He ran like the sewers, slipping and slithering, he ran like an insect , scuttling and tripping and i followed like a hound, I followed like the wolf, eyes followig him like a hawk. Boom ! I heard the bombs fall far away at the horizon but all I saw whas him falling headlong in the middle od the market square, slithering among the feet of the people gathering to watch the bombs fall from the sky. There we were, the wolf and the sheep together, alone in the middle of the world. The pomp and show of fire raining from the sky was more interesting to the world than a prostitute standing over an old man shoving a gun into his face. Alone in a crowd again. Bombs pounded the palaces accross the river drowning the cries for help of a disheveled old man gone mad with fear. He did not repent as I stared into him, he knew his deeds well. Maybe he knew he would end like a rabid dog on the street someday. But all the knowledge and forebodig cannot stop fear, the fear of death that made people forget him and look accross the river. The fear of death that made his eyes dance wild, that turned them blood red in a last flash of life. Of the red, the red that I craved so much ! The bombs fell again accross the river and the gun spoke my wish three times. The red sprang forth from his eyes and drenched me in its warmth. My heart pounded in rhythm with the bombs drowning the screams of the people around me. I let myself loose finally, I felt soft and warm, tender and light. Is this how the men feel ? I felt spent, I felt cleansed. The legs of steel buckled and I sat down in the warm wisps of his soul. the bombs fell yet again and all around me people hugged each other, sobbing, heads resting in each other's bosoms. Maybe we care , caress and clean ourselves only when we fear . A fear greater than hunger or of ridicule from the society. Maybe th e world needs these bombs to do what needs to be done, what is right, what feels right and yet we do not do. Maybe we need to bombs to nest ourselves in each other's arms. All my life I saw these people walk uneasy and alone on these streets and today, today they stood holding hands, hugging faces, each clasping the other as the bombs weaved their careless melody over the palaces. Love soaked in tears and fear all around me, is this what heaven feels like? Does the world need a bigger fear to make us love each other? Do we need a bigger fear to stop us from instilling our own fear on others? If so, then let there be a war, let there be a all pervading fear of death for all. For in that the world my forget to hate my love. Let the bombs fall, let the world rain bullets for with the world busy in its fear of death, I may have my one moment of love, Beth. We may have our moment of love! Let the tales be unspoken no more, Beth.
The world is ending and so is its fear on me. I am coming home, to that cold little window I miss each night.
I am coming home to kiss my beautiful Beth !