About 500 words.
This is a story idea started by ZILLAH (Visit her website soon!), who is definitely my favourite ScattyBat PerkyGoff writer. (:>) Probably a cybervamp too, as she insists on fresh donations of virtual blood quite often. But when Zillah asks one to add a few words to a joint cyberscribble, 'tis very hard to resist.

So here is a story that has been circulated around an internet community, with various scribes adding words as it flew past. A tale woven by many minds. A wonderful idea. The story is never-ending... it is still being written. Here is the first part.

With my thanks to that community, for including me...

STORY of a lonely GHOUL

BEASTLY WAS A sad grey and moldy baby. Taken in by a gentle fairy, life was a dream until she died. Then a lost and hungry raven heard Beastly's dream turning into nightmare, and was drawn by a calling of death: the resonance of fear from those who think they will soon be dead. The raven glided down in silent purpose 'pon ebon wings. From a horrid-green cloud of industrial effluent he flew. But when the raven sidled up to the dying child and croaked in query, he could not bring himself to wait, nor impatient hasten death and pluck out its beautiful soulful eyes – eyes that looked at him with welcome, and moved his heart with an alien sorrow. So instead, the raven fed the hungry ghoulchild as an orphaned nestling.

Perhaps it reminded him of happier times, and so perhaps they did each other some kindness. But this was in a harsh land, and in the Time of Festering Concrete; the raven was hard-pressed to find wholesome freshdeads of any kind. They had to make do with what he could find; things that the city-dwellers killed without thought or reason, then cast aside by night; those things that the good daypeople did not want rotting in their own world. And the raven gave unto the child her first words to speak also. But the raven knew only those words that had meaning to his own dark kind. Then one stormwracked dusk, the raven flew beyond a point of no return, and met with misfortune in an abyss. And he could not find a way back to the place he had begun to call his home. So Beastly was alone again, but no longer as a baby to simply lie down and die of starvation. She had learned to live. Though she was hurt and angry and bewildered, for the raven had left without word of farewell.

So young Beastly began to wander the dying cityscape by night. She knew only what she knew, and that she was quite alone. By day she hid herself in graveyards, in snug dry tombs already eaten bare. She would come out at night to explore and feed on roadkills. Sometimes she sang to herself and sometimes she sang to the neon sky; she sang a resonant song of Calling, but in a strange dark tongue. All who heard her wailing with the night ran away, and with terror in their hearts. This made her sad, and made her think that she was not a pretty little ghoul. Yet she would not stop the song. Sweet and soul-piercing she sang, and she looked often at the sodium-lit sky and made wishes to drift away on the fluffy green clouds.

One night, young Beastly fell into a deep dark pit, and though she scrabbled mightily at the sides and screamed furiously in tones alien and paralyzing to insomnia-struck paranoids in the nearby hamlet, she could not escape; and so, having tired herself out and thus fallen into uneasy, feral sleep, she was awakened in the cold grey dawn by the echoing sounds of a voice shouting down to her.

...To be continued.
If you want to know more, visit Zillah's site, as she is the "Responsible Entity" for this one, hehe!

Zillah - Squee@ibm.net
yulip - yulip@geocities.com
Pwl - pwl@ptech.demon.co.uk
Soma - SomaCrow@aol.com

Story jointly copyright as attributed.

This is our darkly-charming Beastly out foraging. So if this sweet ghoulchild wails within your inbox one grim and stormy night, be sure to feed and comfort her with the best of your dark words. Then send on her way to another trusted writingfriend.

Beastly the Ghoulchild

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Write a letter to a Ghoulchild! Mailto:beastly@ptech.demon.co.uk [subject=BelovedBeastly]

Have you seen Beastly anywhere? Mailto:pwl@ptech.demon.co.uk [subject=ParentalAngst]

we are betrayed · we are lost and forsaken ~ gary numan 1997 ©