The Terrifying Truth of Windell's Supernatural Showcase
It’s a strange train that rattles out to Salvo’s neck of the woods. A strange old locomotive in which you travel alone. It doesn’t even seem to be staffed. The stops on the way are stranger again. Towns with names like Nearly Nowhere, Stifled Terror, Jaundice, Town of the Angry Dead and Yellow Matter Custard Dripping from a Dead Dog’s Eye. Empty stations are lit in a piss hue by flickering lampposts. The only living thing I saw during the whole journey was a three quarters dead pigeon twitching upon platform gravel. Had it not been for the sedatives, I would have undoubtedly succumbed to the sense of dread that permeated the whole carriage. I considered standing up and repeatedly screaming ‘Take me back to Dublin!’ ‘Take me back to Dublin!’ . . .but it wouldn’t have made any difference. No one would have heard my pleas. I doubt the train even had a driver and I had the distinct feeling that its sole propellant was sinister intent.
Things shuddered to a halt and I knew, just somehow knew, that I had arrived at my destination. Trembling, I stepped out of the door (which, incidentally, seemed to be a devised coffin lid) and stood waiting in the gloom. I waited and waited. I waited some more. Then I heard a noise. A throat being cleared. I looked left and there, in an adjacent recess, I barely made out a figure. It was Salvo. He was holding a portfolio close to his chest and looking wary. ‘Here,’ he said, ‘I done your fuckin pictures now let that be an end to it’. He held out the portfolio and I took it from him. It was deceptively heavy. Salvo turned to go but before he vanished from view he turned back and spoke once more. ‘Something happened with the art in there’, he said. ‘What?’ I asked. ‘Ah, it’s weird,’ he replied, ‘some of the stuff, I didn’t draw it and the stories, well, you didn’t write them’. I asked why he included these pages in the portfolio and he told me he had been instructed to. ‘By who?’ I asked. ‘I don’t know, but we better do as they say’ he answered.
Salvo then left me alone to await the train back to Dublin. As I stood there, I decided to open the portfolio and take a look inside. I saw the pages, the other half of the comic, and at once knew that Salvo was correct. It was just a feeling. Instinct really. The same instinct that tells you not to walk into a dark forest after you hear a growl. That kind of instinct only more so. Much more. I’m sorry. We have no choice. We must bring this thing into the world and you, poor reader, must look upon it.
I put the pages away and zipped them up. Shivering in the murky light, I caught sight of the station’s name upon a rusty plaque. It read: ‘Yonder’.
Supernatural Showcase/Yonder launches this Saturday, December 11, 2010 from 7pm until late, at Anseo (public house of the damned), 18 Camden Street Lower, Dublin 2.