Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Things We Carry Inside Us



It was not quite a lucid dream, but it was something I was meant to know. It had been given to me. I don’t remember dreams very well unless I wrote them down. I didn’t have to write this one.

I was a member of a clan, an extended family of peaceful farmers until the bad times came. We were attacked and drawn into a terrible battle with a rising empire of vampires. And this was way before vampires had ever come into vogue. The war with the vampires had gone badly. The human race had been massacred down to a small bunch of which I had become the unlikely warlord. My friends had been killed. I had seen my family killed. In despair I wanted only revenge before I died. I was filled with a hatred and bloodlust I would never have imagined could exist inside me.

Through turns of events I can’t remember anymore, we turned the tide and the vampires were defeated. The king and queen captured and brought before me in a kind of Viking hall, bound in silver chains. These were the two who had destroyed my world, and forced me to a life of violence.

I ordered the King vampire chained to iron rings in the floor, while the queen sat on a chair helplessly and watched.

The King and the queen were quite close. They were not monsters between themselves. I think in context of the dream they did love each other and had a great connection to each other. I wanted the Queen to watch. I wanted her to feel what I felt. The King spoke some final word of love to her as they chained him to the floor. I took the hammer and stake in my own hands and killed him in front of her eyes as she wept blood tears. Now there was only her, alone now that most of her species had been killed and the remainder being hunted down.

I had intended to just kill her and there an end.

I’m sure that was my first intention.

I saw her there in her doom and helplessness. At my mercy. I thought of all the bloodshed and all the harm she had done me who would have been happy to have been left alone. Where had she had mercy for me? And yet she was a woman, with heart, capable of love. Knowing that she was not a beast, that she could feel pain and loss and humiliation, I was filled with an implacable, insatiable hatred. Killing her, it was not enough. I wanted to make sure she spent a few minutes in Hell with me first.

I wanted to make . . . a statement.

“Strip her!” I shouted, throwing my armor and jacket to the floor. Suddenly every warrior in the room knew what was going to happen. Women fled from the room crying. Some women covered their mouths with their hands and turned away. My warriors stripped away her clothes until she was nude. Her body was pale and clammy, like meat in a supermarket. She was not beautiful or desirable. But I didn’t desire her. Not at all did I desire her. I wasn’t interested in beauty or even pleasure. I remember that emotion clearly. I was interested only in the most extreme humiliation I could possibly commit on another person who had ruined me so completely. “Stake her out. Legs apart!”

My warriors chained her to rings in the floor. She screamed and resisted, fought them with teeth and nails and tears, protested she was a queen as they splayed her legs far apart and chained them. When she tried to bite them, they beat her on the head. I kneeled beside her and put the wooden stake between her long teeth as a gag so she couldn’t attack me. She was nude. She was gagged. She was chained to a stone floor, her legs spread eagled.

Yes I did.

I did it with gusto and the utmost violence. I did it with the all hate and rage I could feel. This was not an erotic dream. There was nothing erotic about it. It was me using my male body as a battering ram of emotional violation. I was using my body as a weapon of degradation, a messenger of rage and hate, to drive the story home to her of her ruin, to crush her utterly, to drive home my personal rage for all the death she had caused me. I wanted her last thought on earth to be of me, her conqueror mounted on top of her, inside of her, against her wishes, against her dignity, against her personhood, tearing her and striking her and showing her how completely I had crushed her spirit beyond healing. I wanted her to hope for rescue and yet not be rescued. I who would have been only a peaceful farmer raising a family, if she had left me alone.

When I was done with her I took the stake from her mouth, her face filled with a kind of despair and resignation. I had shattered her, and the knowledge gave me bitter pleasure. I think if I had unchained her she would have lain as she was, hoping for death.

I took the stake and hammer and dispatched her. The warriors roared their disapproval. They had lost loved ones too and had hoped for a go at her. It was the only touch of mercy I showed her.

As I looked down at her face, streaked with blood tears, I felt the rage drain out of me and a great sense of despair, because I knew also in that moment I was no longer human.

And I woke up.


It makes me wonder what kind of things I’m capable of, what any of us are capable of, and in what circumstances those things might come out. I suspect that we are not what we seem. Joseph Conrad wrote often on the theme that our decency and civilization are a veneer as thin as paint that can be stripped away by the howling mob around us, or by circumstance. It’s easy to judge the wicked. But maybe the rest of us, maybe we’re just luckier that’s all.


C Sanchez-Garcia

14 comments:

  1. That would scare the shit out of me, too. But I think we all have those types of capabilities within us. It's our decisions that keep us from being the next Genghis Kahn or Vlad the Impaler, and I think we kind of lose our ability to choose in dream land.

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  2. But did it turn you on?

    We're all capeable of violence. That doesn't mean that we're evil, it just means that we have the capacity.

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  3. Hey dude, I can't resist when you post links to your words. What's your website addy? I must download something of yours, since your words are always so provocative.

    I've had a dream in which as a vampire drained me, he allowed me to experience scenes from his mortal life, and I became the man doing what he did to women. I used part of that in a short story I got published on an erotica site.

    We are all capable of violence that sickens us. Fantasies and dreams are the way that our brain allows us to process those thoughts without acting on them, which would horrify us. The Greeks dealt with these taboos by writing plays about them...think Oedipus Rex.

    The book that I have on Smashwords as a free read has a heroine dealing with the aftermath of having been raped. She is helped by the sexy doctor to overcome her fears, then it almost happens again, only this time she is ready psychologically to fight back. She triumphs, cue HEA. I thought it was an empowering kind of book, but my publisher of the rest of the series rejected it due to the subject matter, despite the non-arousing manner in which I dealt with the scenes. So I put it up for the world to judge. Some have enjoyed it, some said it made them "too ill" to finish the story.
    But I write realistic contemporary fiction, and evil is very much a part of life.

    Thanks again for making me think deep thoughts. I enjoy that.

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  4. Hi Garce,

    your concern about this dream does you credit. I have no doubt of the violence I'm capable of. Rage sits on my shoulder and whispers to me constantly. I hear the snap of bone, taste the metalic tang and surprising heat of fresh blood, hear the point where a scream no longer has anything behind it but the reaction to pain. Violence is easy. Restraint is hard. Compassion is an achievement. That's why violence is a taboo. We want it. We can have it at any time. The only price is our humanity.

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  5. Hi Heather

    This is a really complicated question. Even if it is our decisions, sometimes fate or circumstance can put in a place where we don;t have any good choices. Then things come out of us we didn;t know were even there. If the Vienna School of Art had accepted a mediocre young artist named Adolf Hitler as a student when he applied, 6 millions Jews might have lived out their lives.


    Garce

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  6. Hi Kathleen

    No, it didn't. Though I can easily imagine being turned on by the pure passion of rage and getting out of control. It doesn;t mean we're evil, no, but it means we have that capacity which we always struggle against. My opinion anyway.

    GArce

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  7. Hi Fiona!

    Thanks for coming again. As we say.

    Well, since you mention it, and we are here hoping for a chance to plug our stuff once in a while, I've got quite a few stories out there if you'd like to read my actual fiction, instead of just my talking about it here. There's stories in print anthologies, and also on the web. There's two places:

    The Treasure Gallery at the Erotica Readers and Writers Association is the ERWA "Hall of Fame" of the best of the best short stories on permanent archive. Many of the erotica anthologies you see in book stores like the "Mammoth Book of" series get a lot of their stories from picking through the ERWA Treasure Chest gallery. I have my best stuff on display there as well as my excellent blog mates here at OGG (Mike Kimera is especially prolific), and you can read them for free at:

    http://www.erotica-readers.com/GD/TC-EF/TC-EF-Main.htm

    On the subject of vampires, I have a vampire story I consider my best work so far, called "The Lady and the Unicorn" there at:

    http://www.erotica-readers.com/GD/TC-EF/The_Lady_and_The_Unicorn.htm

    Now, if you've never been to ERWA before spend some time looking there. They have so many good resources for writers there.


    Having said that, if you;d like to read a collection of my stuff and do a good deed by donating to RAIN, a rape recovery charity for victems of sexual abuse, which is where the money for my book goes, you can find my stuff at good ol' Amazon:

    http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Together-Presents-C-Sanchez-Garcia/dp/1450511910

    'nuff of that.

    I agree with what you say about fantasies and dreams. Especially lucid dreams where you can consciously experiment with things you;d never dare do in the real world. Some forms of shamanism use dreams as a tool for spiritual training.

    I want to read some of your stuff too sometime. Your book on smashwords sounds like a gutsy theme.

    Garce

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  8. Hi Mike

    We all some of that inside us, its where our evolution came from. I've had long off list discussions with Lisabet on this topic of evolution. I think about it a lot. Compassion is the unique acheivement of our species. Its what defines our humanity.

    Garce

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  9. I think animals are capable of compassion also...think of the female ape who rescued the boy who fell into her area in Brookfield Zoo a coupla years ago...she gingerly carried him over to the door that the keepers use to bring food into there, and waited holding him until they opened the door and took him from her arms. But altruism? Thinking of others before your own skin? THAT is truly something that even very few humans can ever achieve. That's why we give it the highest military honors that we have, because to sacrifice your own only chance at life (that we can be sure of) for another person is honorable to the max. Thanks for all of the links, Chris...or do you prefer Garceus?

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  10. Oh, I don't know about that. Hitler lost the choice he preferred, the easy choice. He came across one roadblock on a map of millions. It's quite a leap from art to genocide. I understand your point, though. In your dream, you came across a million roadblocks, leaving you only a few paths to choose from. I find your dream choice to be more understandable than Hitler's real one.

    But, on another note, I had a dream last night that reminded me of your post, and I wanted to share. I was just recently offered my job back, and last night I had a dream that the regional manager came and told me that they were rethinking their decision to keep me on. Well, we nearly got hit by an eighteen-wheeler, and the manager was stuck under the cab but perfectly fine, just in shock. I'm not really sure how I did it, but I kind of crushed him with the truck until he was a bloody pulp. The difference? In my dream, I was Lindsay Lohan. But I still created that violence and it still stemmed from my insecurities. It's scary, but I guess I just make it easier by giving myself a persona in dreams. It plays out more like a movie that way.

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  11. Hello, Garce,

    I've never had (or at least remembered) a dream this extreme, but I occasionally dream that I am stabbing people. I can feel the knife burying itself in my enemy's flesh and it gives me a kind of creepy satisfaction. I wake wondering if I'm really capable of such a thing. Perhaps we all are.

    Warmly,
    Lisabet

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  12. Hi Fiona

    I hadn;t heard about the ape, that's interesting. I wonder how we affect the animals we love or who get to know us well ithout us trying to kill them. I wonder if they can learn some of out good values as well. I wonder if the ape learned kindness or altruism.

    Usually on the Internet my friends call me by my high school nickname "Garce".

    Garce

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  13. Hi Heather

    I usually find that people in dreams, unless they;re lucid dreams, symbolise something inside myself. Images are the vocabulary of the unconscious. Maybe your boss represents an authority figure, or a figure who has the power to mess up your life and you were eliminating a threat. Or wished you could make threats go away. Could be?

    Garce

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  14. Hi Lisabet

    MAybe the knife is a phallic symbol. Do you ever have dreams of stabbing someone with a cigar? I probably shouldn;t kid about it. I've had dreams where I've done stuff like that too, maybe its how we get stuff out of out system.

    What bugs me about dreams, knives and all, is that they come from some place deep within. You and I have speculated about the afterlife and the stuff that forms it. I like to think I'll have an emotionally thrilling afterlife, but if these things come from the same place as dreams, I wonder what it will be like. No vampires I hope.

    Garce

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