Sad, demented, yet oddly sociable.



Seated in a middle carriage, Black Annis was thrown forward and across the compartment hard, coming to an equally sudden and jarring halt against the opposite wall. Picking herself up, she cocked an ear and took in the utterly foreign sound of the wheels of the train squealing painfully loudly under brakes. Combined with the shrill scream of the steam train’s whistle, Black Annis, now standing, strode to the window and stared through her reflection into the black night. She saw nothing but darkness.


Cloak still dripping the  conductor’s blood, her initial thought was to time slip immediately, but the uncertainty of doing so whilst moving stopped her. She could feel the train slowing, and not knowing what else to do, she sat, gazing once more into the inky blackness of the night.


As the train came to a holt, she saw through her window a massively oversized black cat trot past her carriage, a huge smile creased her lips.



With a last-minute change of plans, Bast, for ‘Bastard’, extended her wings and flew to the end of the train. Landing on top of the rear most carriage, shotgun in hand, with her assorted arsenal of weaponry shoved through the belt about her waist, she swung down, her feet causing a thump as she hit the external landing. First utilising convention, her attempt at opening the door via its handle failed dismally, the door being locked as it was. Next, she took a step back, and with the heel of her stout boot, she kicked the door handle with all of her might, causing her to fall over backwards and topple off the small landing and onto the track. Cursing, she picked herself up, dusted herself off, and clambered back onto the little cabooses veranda. Shoving her hand angrily beneath her cloak, she withdrew her stick from the pouch stitched within it. Pointing the stick at the door handle, she muttered a few words, and the handle, plus the edge of the door and the frame beside it promptly melted away with a hiss and a spit and a feather of smoke. Replacing her stick, Bast stepped through the open doorway, leaving the door open behind her, pulled back both hammers of the shotgun and brought it to her shoulder. With the barrels leading she made her way along the passage of the carriage. Passengers froze at the sight of her, Sardine striding along in her wake.


At the other end of the train Maude, Maudering Bitch, aka – Kali ‘Goddess of Death’, had equal amounts of trouble getting into the carriage. In her case, she had resumed her Goddess form, and found that twelve feet of angered shotgun wielding deity was too large to fit in through the carriage door. After bring herself down to a reasonable two metres in height, she too kicked the locked door, only to put her foot through it, with the door remaining soundly locked. After a certain amount of wobbling about and less than deity like cursing, she managed to extract her foot, placed her hand through the hole she had created, and opened the door from within by doing no more than turning the handle.


Hearing the ‘crash’ of Maude kicking her foot through the door, Cat, the Cat Sidhe, sprinted toward the origin of the noise, slipping between the metre wide gap between the little Volkswagen, its lights still blazing. Coming alongside the front carriage, she slowed, taking in the screams coming from the passengers within. Moving forward again, down the length of the train, twin booms from somewhere adjacent to her, yet within the train, tore through the night. Someone was firing a shotgun; stopping, lifting an ear toward the sound, Cat waited for silence, proof that their quarry had finally been dealt a terminal blow. Crashing and banging quickly followed, and Sardine jumped to the ground from a coupling between carriages, and sprinted toward her. Seeing the Cat Sidhe, Sardine skidded and turned, and shot back to the train, bounding back up into the car she had just alighted.


Hot on her heels, Cat bounded behind the smaller feline, entering the car and sprinted down the passage.


She smelt her blood before she saw her. Maude lay flat on her back, gouts of blood spurted from a multitude of deep wounds. Stopping and looking down at her, Maude minutely raised her head, lifted an arm, and pointed down the passage. As if pre arranged, first one, then another extremely loud blast filled the air. The screaming that followed boarded on the unnatural. Sprinting once more, Sardine close behind her, Cat slammed open a carriage door, jumped the gap between cars, knocking the opposite carriage door from its hinges in her flight. What she saw had her skidding and slipping to a hasty stop causing Sardine to crash into her rear legs.

Black Annis ran with every ounce of power and speed she could muster, sprinting bloodied and pained through the train. The wound to her upper left arm stretched from her inside elbow, running bone deep, ending with a broad puckered mouth of a cut that entered her armpit, the tip of the blade having stopped when it hit bone. Shotgun pellets riddled most of her upper body, the heavy bloody cloak absorbing the brunt of the gunshots force. Half of her left ear hung limply away from her temple, and her lungs burned like a blacksmith’s furnace in her chest.


Her flight was not made out of fear, nor was it cowardice. It was intellect that leant wings to her feet as she fled. Knowing with utter certainty that she had met a force more powerful than herself, her only salvation from the trap she had been caught within would be flight. To run, to hide, to flit to some other time away from here, and most definitely, away from now. To achieve such advantage she had to leave the train and disappear. The ‘from’ far outweighing the ‘too’. The sound of Bast racing behind her, spurring her as though whatever hounds lurked in Hell had escaped their collars, and were loosed upon her alone. And yet to her absolute horror, it sounded as though the kukri wielding girl in the shapeless red dress was gaining.


Ahead lay salvation in the form of a door. A door at the end of the carriage, but moreso, a door to the outer world, a door to freedom and escape. And then the door, as if pounded from the outside in by the hand of a drunken God crashed off its hinges as she reached for its handle, and flew directly at her.


That a domestic cat the size of a small horse was coming through it, stamping the door to the floor mid-flight, blocking her way out, only caused her to draw and swipe at it with her spectacularly well honed filleting knife. Slashing the massive black and white cat across the forehead down toward its jaw, rupturing the left eye, splaying her face like some dropped exotic fruit. Not stopping the momentum of her flight, Black Annis hurdled the screaming beast, the open doorway tantalisingly close.


And now, oddly, she was falling backwards, her eyesight vanishing, her feet lifting from the ground. Her cheeks flared with white-hot pain, and her nose felt as though gripped in a needle covered vice. Reaching and tearing the furry black and white demon clawing her cheeks, biting through sides of her nose, she threw it hard to her side and away from her. The small cat rendered immediately unconscious,the strength of the blow against the bulkhead being what it was. Picking herself up again, she ran the last step, jumping through the door, aiming for the ground, ready to flit away through time. Landing, rolling she pulled herself upright, ready to run, ready to hide.


In the moment before she flitted, an enormous force threw her forward to the ground, beating her, holding her. Driving with iron-hard brutality, Bast’s kukri was thrust powerfully through Black Annis’s cloak and shoulder-blade, slamming through her chest, standing proud from the upper portion of her alabaster breast – Bast still attached. Both flitted as one.  


Black Annis and Bast, vanished from the sight of any who watched.


An owl screeched in the night, and Maude dragged herself to her feet, slipping in her blood as she did. Cat stopped screaming, and began to sob. Sardine was yet to move.



Click the picture above. Now, I am going to sneak down to the pub for a quick cider. Huzzah! Oh, if the above didn’t read well, my apologies, it is a first draft. You all rock!





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4 Comments Add yours

  1. S. Chersis says:

    “splaying her face like some dropped exotic fruit”–that does a great job at also indicating just how messy that face now is.

    I’m really curious to know about how all of these mythological figures relate.

    (And is Mrs. Fox by any chance a kitsune, or is Sardine passing through another time and place?)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is a story where three women, Bast, Cat Sidhe, and Maude form a mostly hungover posse, and rid The Now of the scourge that is Black Annis. The Horsewomen Of The Apocalypse feature heavily, and Sardine flits through time and space throughout. Gods get a showing, and generally wind up in trouble after inviting the entire revelling crowd from The Big Pub In The Sky after closing, with Mrs. God’s. So far I have only about 50k words down, and have been editing it lately. Mrs. Fox doesn’t make an appearance in this one. She is currently sharpening knives and flaying bodies beneath her house on John Street in Fremantle. I am pleased you like the descriptions I have been using. It makes a huge difference to me hearing it. Thank you! Oh, and Mrs. Fox most definitely not a Kitsune, although that is a fantastic idea for the next one I have on the drawing board. Awesome.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. S. Chersis says:

        “[M]ostly hungover posse” sounds hilarious and almost like they were reluctant to get involved (or like they agreed to do so but were drunk at the time).

        Ooh…I look forward to Mrs. Fox’s reveal, then! As well as the result of the Kitsune idea.

        (And of course! I know how much comments mean to a writer. I used to be such a lurker and I’m trying to fix that by telling writers and artists what I really am enjoying about what they create. … That could probably use better grammar but the coffee’s worn off.)


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