The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 90

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 90: Closing In. “Why don’t we wa—” Th’Rut elbows my face, and knocks me out of the sky.  My body shifts spirit. “What the hell man?! That hurt! You gave me a nosebleed… You could’ve killed me!” “Attack me,” Th’Rut … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 90

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 89

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 89: Are you listening to yourself? Th’Rut, Kanti and I hover over the woods behind Eliza’s house.  Kanti sits, stoically perched on his thick purple haze. “I suppose it may be beneficial for Emery to train with you.” “Training? How … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 89

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 88

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 88: Telling the Truth. Th’Rut washes the dishes after we eat. He looks so natural in that body. Even stranger, he’s genuinely happy listening to Eliza rambling on about her self-imposed stresses… Why is he here?  Are they… a thing? … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 88

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 87

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 87: In the woods! A wild pizza! Throw a pizza box at it! “I’ll get it! Did you pay online or on the phone or anything?” I ask while walking toward the front door. “Good question,” Eliza giggles as Kanti … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 87

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 86

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 86: Ergo Proxy.  “Oh, you’re sitting! Nice of you to join me,” Eliza says passing me her glass. “I’m not having another sip… no offense… Not because of the wine, which I don’t like, by the way. I just know … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 86

The Gyre in the Doldrums

By Mark Figueroa A tower stuck out of the ocean, piercing the clouds. The tower was seen by few and discussed by even fewer. It extended into the sky like a chimney from beneath the sea. Clouds in the distance pressed against an invisible wall circling the tower. The waves slept and the breeze suffocated. … Continue reading The Gyre in the Doldrums

Heartlands: MartytraM

"Just imagine an American-based, Christian Organization planning to poison water supplies to bring the second-coming quicker." - Lupe Fiasco, American Terrorist. Marty paced around his bedroom. His hands were raw from the frequent button-mashing, keyboard-clacking and furious masturbation. He was normal. Marty grew up in a good home. No screaming, no fighting, no arguing. They … Continue reading Heartlands: MartytraM

By the Lake

“You’re late, Lars!” Earnest slams a heavy potato sack into the still waters of the lake. His dry, sunken eyes are red at the edges. “I—I didn’t think—” “Aye, laddy, you don't think at all, did’ya?” Lars removes his horned, iron helm and runs his gnomish hands through his mane. He takes a deep breath, … Continue reading By the Lake

The Fountain of Truth

by Mark Figueroa “So what happened next, dad?” The children asked in unison, clutching their sheets in anticipation. “Well, kids,” Antalaus said, resuming his story. “Lars nodded at me. ‘Then, we crush the heads an’ scoop the remainin’ soft meat from the bone,’ he said. His little eyes barely sticking out from underneath his large … Continue reading The Fountain of Truth

Idle Idols: Part 1

By Mark Figueroa It was Thursday. The last Thursday in February. It was cold, cloudy and windy. Fred sat in his car, watching Samantha. She held her son Robert and struggled to close the door behind her. Fred sighed. Samantha gave him the finger. She slapped the icy hood of the car and opened the … Continue reading Idle Idols: Part 1

Borrowed Time

Written by: Mark Figueroa Frank N. Cadence was stressed. His meter was running low. The liquid in the glass vial flickered. His heart skipped with each belch in the phial. He could hear the rhythm of his soul catching up to his age. Long ago, Frank Cadence was born a twin. He was teased, but … Continue reading Borrowed Time

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 85

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 85: Don’t forget to bring a towel. Eliza’s shoes clack on the wood floor. “Damn! Em, that smells like heaven. I am so hungry! You have no idea!” She walks toward the table nonchalantly. “Bacon, sausage… O-M-G! BUTTERED TOAST! Incredible, … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 85

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 84

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 84: More weather terminology. “…There was once a planet in the celestial doldrums,” Kanti replies. “The population resembled spiders.  They communicated in shrieks and hisses. Every home was made from large, thick spider webs; there were towers made of webs … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 84

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 83

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 83: Under the threshold. Kanti warps next to the oven. “I will not pontificate about the complexity of your situation, Young Emery, but it would be wise to consider that there are facts you do not know when judging someone … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 83

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 82

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 82: Under the threshold. Kanti warps next to the oven. “I will not pontificate about the complexity of your situation, Young Emery, but it would be wise to consider that there are facts you do not know when judging someone … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 82

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 81

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 81: Time heals a little, but not most wounds, unless you’re an idiot. “I’d be a terrible parent.” “Whatever. I know.” She laughs. “You,” Eliza inhales and shoos me back with a wave. “Further,” she says, holding her breath. “Good,” … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 81

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 80

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 80: Horacio. Aemon waves a finger, simultaneously flicking his wrist and sets me down.  “The Keepers?” I ask seeing the silhouettes of my limbs. “I swear, Emery, Lead lined brain. Yes, the Keepers. The Keepers preside over an infinite wasteland … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 80

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 79

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 79: Reality is nourishment. Aemon closes his palm; my body levitates and my elbow snaps into place. “There we go,” he says. “Now, as you know, I’m confined wi—” “I don’t care. Save your speech. Get to the point,” I … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 79

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 78

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 78: I am who am. “_ __ .” Aemon responds. He continues speaking, but he’s too powerful for me to hear anything except thunder. The darkness rumbles violently.  “I- I -C-c-an’t-t underst-st-stand you!” I tense up to keep my body … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 78

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 77

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 77: En casa ajena tambien? Aye no! Kanti warps when I cross through the roof and glide into the bathroom.  The door opens as I revert to a physical being.  “Wait!” I scream. “Jesus, Emery! Do you always go with … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 77

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 76

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 76: Amortization? Now? We read the fine print years ago. “If that’s true…” she says. I can hear her smile and feel her disbelief. “Then why’d you kiss me? You don’t have to lie to me, Emery. If you’re not … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 76

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 75

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 75: Business and pleasure. The door opens and Someone’s parents stand at the door. A little underdressed for being at Eliza’s Christmas party; the mother’s wearing a white dress, black pantyhose and white high heels. Her black hair curls just … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 75

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 74

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 74: Somewhere between Chaos and humanity, I heard her song. “Hi.” She extends her hand, “Saria. You must be Emery, Eliza’s boy.” Saria smiles. “My parents and your mom—I mean your aunt—go way, way back. Believe it or not,” Saria … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 74

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 73

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 73: The legend of Link? That’s really all it ever was. Kanti materializes and looks down at me. “An unwanted guest is present; she seems weak, but I can sense she is concealing her energy. She is using a corpse … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 73

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 72

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 72: The exiled king. The gaming system, the controllers and all the cables levitate in front of me. “Thanks. I really appreciate it. You have no idea how bad life would be if this broke.” “I can imagine. I’m a … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 72

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 71

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 71: Metaphors for multigenerational systematic abuse perpetuated by irresponsible modern content for the pursuit of profit and self-imposed, but unrecognized mental acquiescence. In short, read between the lines because F’ed is “u” if you don’t see(k) Knowledge through the non-conventional … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 71

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 70

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 70: One of these days! I warp to Eliza’s house. Kanti and I sit on the roof.  It’s a pretty nice afternoon, the sun isn’t melting the piles of snow, but it could be worse. I could be cold. This … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 70

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 69

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 69: I thought the same thing. “Did he—” “Monad was not completely present cognitively… but, how could one truly know?” “You read minds!” I yell out, holding my hands up and curling fingers dramatically. “Of beings who exist… That ability … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 69

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 68

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 68: Kanti’s never-ending story. “Eventually, a millennium and a half after, Monad materialized back in this reality. Enlil and I, along with the cloak bearers, had managed to steer mankind back into a golden age, of sorts. When we found … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 68

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 67

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 67: Who’s to say what really happened? From the outskirts of a small village, Th’Rut points at a man resembling Monad: he’s bronze, long brown coarse hair and brown beard. He resonates at an extremely high level. “He is called … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 67

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 66

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 66: It all matters. “You see, a cloak bearer’s negativity and positivity resonate much stronger than that of a normal human, so to a Nothing, regret, sorrow, paranoia, hatred, self-pity, self-consciousness, anger, mistrust, disdain, fear, and unhappiness from a cloak … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 66

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 65

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 65: Lullabies of the lost. “What do you mean? He seems pretty composed,” I say, seeing Monad calmly evading black-eyed corpses possessed by Th’Rut. Red light traces his hand; he devours dozens of men, women and children in seconds. Monad’s … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 65

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 64

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 64: Time. I sit up and catch a glimpse of my room before more images appear in my mind. Enlil, in all her divine beauty, walks alongside me—Kanti—speaking to various men and women at different times in history: Neanderthals, Cro-Magnons, … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 64

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 63

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 63: The same cloak. “Monad,” Kanti begins, as he flashes images into my mind. “Separated from that very cloak. He killed my soulmate: Enlil.” A beautiful, pale blue woman in an extravagant white dress pops into my mind. The seams … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 63

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 62

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 62: Batman.  “Conyo, Emery,” Eliza sighs. I run over to help with the bags, but she shrugs me away. “What? What’d I do?” Eliza exhales and rubs her forehead after putting her bags down. “Really?” She sighs again. “If you … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 62

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 61

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 61: The Metaphysics of Morals. I picture my room at Eliza’s house and kick my shoes off when I’m standing under the  windows in the ceiling. I slide out of my pants and pull my shirt off, giving my armpits … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 61

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 60

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 60: Darunia’s melancholy. The snow, metahuman charges at me.  “It does not possess the ability to speak or think. It is energy I am controlling. In relation to Mymud, this creature pales in comparison. It cannot manipulate its own energy; … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 60

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 59

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 59: The song of four seasons. Kanti tilts his head. “You’re capable of that now, even with my crystalized energy. It should be fairly obvious that the cloak-bearer has a universal area of responsibility.”  “Cool! Whe—” “—For now, your purpose … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 59

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 58

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 58: The lutenist of limbo. “Well… since we’re on the subject…” I say, piling all the dishes in the sink. The Nothing… eating alien souls…” I strain scrubbing the waffle maker. “…Sounds like a bunch of crap, Kanti. Humans in … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 58

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 57

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 57: What goes around isn’t exactly what comes around. “There are Nothing who have eluded your predecessors, their predecessors, and even myself. There is no conceivable way to measure the rate at which the Nothing cross the rift, or how, … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 57

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 56

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 56: Don’t tell me twice. “Really?” Eliza asks when I hand her my plate.  I smile. “Well, I’m a guest!” “So, as a guest in my house, you do your laundry in my machines, you sleep in one of my … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 56

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 55

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 55: That’s a real romp n’ stomp.  A cemetery. Arsen points at a hole in the ground. His lips are moving, but he isn’t saying anything. His arm keeps going down to his side, rewinding and replaying.  “Bro—I can’t hear … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 55

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 54

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 53: Circumstantial. “Nothing, or not, drugs are a choice. It isn’t anyone’s fault, but the abuser’s if their lives end up that way. I don’t feel bad for these people,” I rant aloud, flying up until I see the sun … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 54

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 53

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 53: Circumstantial. “Nothing, or not, drugs are a choice. It isn’t anyone’s fault, but the abuser’s if their lives end up that way. I don’t feel bad for these people,” I rant aloud, flying up until I see the sun … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 53

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 52

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 52: A Chris-head?  A sick-looking, corpse-like man in a tank top and sweat pants shuffles into the room. He sniffles erratically. “Chris came through wit’ tha’ gewds!” His raspy voice makes me cringe: it’s dry and phlegmy, like an old … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 52

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 51

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 51: Who vets inner city cops? (  o_o)  “I don’t feel the presence here. It’s nearby… but, I don’t… I was so sure…” I try to ignore the thumping coming from upstairs, but I can’t drown it out.  Officer Dobbin’s … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 51

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 50

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 50: Nine out of ten times, this is probably how it would go down. Shit! I’m a physical being! I shake Asia by her shoulders. “Are you okay?!” I ask frantically, gagging in between. “Wheez! Gasp! Cough! Hugh—” Blood? A … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 50

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 49

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 49:  Aysia is the reason I don’t do meth. Rest in peace. “Fuuuuck!” Aysia, the girl from the photos, screams, stomping around with a bloody knife in her right hand. There’s a puddle of vomit on the floor next to … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 49

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 48

by Mark Figueroa aka Anthony Abyss | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 48:  The escape clause.  “There,” I say, pointing to the horizon. A wave of negative energy washes over me. I keep calm, preventing a knot of anxiety from building in my stomach.  We soar like fish riding a current. I … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 48

The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 47

by Mark Figueroa | Featured Art by A Forgotten Pen at @theforgottenpen Chapter 47: Death died dead from dying… Wow…  “That really hurt…” I groan.  “You fell from beyond the clouds, young Emery. Your physical body will take on the injuries of your ethereal form. You will feel physical pain. I advise you to remain calm. … Continue reading The Cloak of Nothing: Chapter 47