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'94 Fleer Ultra X-Men: 126

Aliens Vs. Predator Universe:1-3, 5-7, 9-10, 12-13, 16-19, 21, 22-23, 26-30, 32-35, 36-39, 41, 43-44, 47, 49-52, 54-55, 57-58, 60-63, 65-67, 69-

D&D: 2-8, 18-35, 38-42, 44, 46-54, 56-57, 59, 61-65, 69-77, 79-88, 95-109, 111-137, 140, 142-146, 148-157, 159-162, 164-168, 171-174, 177-180, 183-194, 198-204, 206-204, 214-215, 217-218, 220-221, 223-239, 242-248, 250-266, 268-283, 285-297, 300-304, 308, 310-330, 332-365, 367, 373, 375, 381-384, 386-407, 409-410, 414-419, 421, 423-427, 429-430, 432-433, 435-436, 438-447, 450-453, 456-459, 461-463, 473-480, 485-488, 491-518, 522-527, 531-532, 543-546, 548-550, 552-574, 576-584, 587-601, 603-628, 630-633, 635, 654-662, 664-668, 670-684, 686-690, 695-696, 698, 702-708, 711-714, 716-717, 722-730, 732-740, 742-743, 745-749, 751-

G.I. Joe(series 1): 2-3, 5-9, 12-14, 17, 20, 22, 24-25, 27-30, 33, 35, 38, 40, 42, 44-50, 53, 55, 58-60, 63-64, 66-67, 69-70, 72-73, 75-77, 79-80, 82, 84-85, 87-89, 92-94, 97, 99, 102-104, 106-107, 109-118, 120, 123, 125, 128, 131-133, 136-137, 139-140, 142, 144, 146-151, 154, 156-157, 159-160, 162, 165-167, 170-172, 175-176, 178-180, 182-183, 187, 189-190, 192-193, 195, 197, 200-

'94 Marvel Masterpieces: 1-7, 9-11, 13-16, 18, 20, 22, 25-28, 30, 32-35, 37, 39, 41-45, 47-48, 50-53, 55, 57-60, 62-63, 65- 68, 71, 73, 75-81, 85-88, 90-91, 93-105, 107-110, 112-113, 118, 122-124, 128, 130-131, 134-135, 137-139, Subsets

Blair Witch Project: 1, 4-6, 9, 11, 14, 16, 18-20, 22, 26-27, 33-36, 38-41, 43-45, 49, 51-53, 56-60, 62-63, 67, 70-

Star Trek 25th Anniversary: 1, 19, 21, 23, 27, 39, 41, 43, 47, 59, 61, 79, 81, 85, 87, 89, 95-96, 109, 111, 113, 115, 117, 123, 137, 149

Aliens vs. Predator Trading Card Game- High Adjudicator

Wizard Magazine #6 (X-Force/Youngblood), 9 (Ash)

Marvel 1993 Annuals #27

G.I. Joe Trading Card Game #10

Universal Monsters of the Silver Screen #1 of 6

Lord of the Rings Wizard Promo P3

Marvel Silver Age Promo Card

Sin: The Movie

Dark Angel Promo P1

Arrow Promo CP1

Sleepy Hollow Promo P2

Skeleton Warriors '95 Fleer ultra Dr. Cyborn

Empire Strikes Back (topps, Chromium/Clearchrome): 46, 48, 50, 53, 55

Spider Man 1994: 20, 24-25, 30, 39, 45, 47, 56, 61-62, 70, 77, 82, 89, 127, 129, 142

Buffy trading Card Game (Top Trumps): Instructions, Adam, Walsh, Mayor Wilkins, the Gentlemen, Veruca, the Judge, Ovu Mobani, Moloch, Kulak, Dru, Darla, the Master, Spike, Balthazar, Der Kindestod, Snyder, Joyce, Wes, Faith, Kendra, Riley, Anya, Tara, Oz, Willow, Angel, Xander, Cordy, Giles, Buffy

Star Trek 25th Anniversary: 3-9, 10, 12-14, 16-18, 20, 22, 24-26, 29, 30-38, 40, 42, 44-46, 49, 51, 53, 55, 57, 66, 68, 86, 88, 90, 92, 94, 98, 100, 102, 104-106, 108, 110, 112, 114, 116, 118, 120-122, 124-129, 130-136, 138-144, 146-148, 150-160

Aliens vs. Predator Universe: A1-3

X-Men '95 Fleer ultra: 2-3, 11, 32, 37, 42, 44, 49, 51, 65, 67, 70, 72, 80, 82, 91, 93, 98-99, 116, 120, 123, 133, 135, 138, 140, 143

The Blair Witch Project: 7-8, 25, 32, 37, 46-47, 66

G.I. Joe Series 1: 15, 36, 100, 124

AD&D: 634, 464-468

X-cutioner's Song: Polaris and Havok, Cable, Mr. Sinister, Stryfe, Dark Riders

'94 X-Men Fleer Ultra: Limited Edition Subset 1 and 6 of 9, Fatal Attractions 5 of 6, 4-5, 7-8, 10, 15-16, 19, 22, 24, 27, 30-33, 35, 37-38, 42, 45-46, 48-50, 53-55, 58-59, 60, 65, 69, 72-77, 79, 80-82, 84-88, 92-93, 95, 97-98, 102, 104-108, 110, 112-115, 117, 122-125, 128, 130, 132-134, 139-140, 143-144, 146-147, 150

Alien 3: Entire Set

X-Men Series 2: 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, 23, 36, 40, 46, 49, 52, 55-61, 71, 74, 77, 79, 85, 94, 98
How many people who talk about how easy kids have it today, or how soft kids are these days would last a month in the world the generation before theirs lived in.

While I think kids should be allowed to take chances, at least in terms of climbing shit or jumping off things, you know what, I'm gonna go ahead and say why the fuck NOT replace gravel and asphalt with foam rubber and shredded tires that would otherwise be stinking up some drainage ditch somewhere?

While I agree that sometimes you should just ignore people who are being mean to you, that bullshit rhyme they taught us in elementary school "Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me" was, in fact, bullshit and often, just a way for adults to avoid dealing with the crap their kids were suffering, and perpetrating.

And I've said this before but I'll keep saying it until I feel I can safely stop, I think the people railing the hardest against people being nicer to their neighbors are just upset that they don't get to be complete wastes of DNA without being called on it.

"Oh, boo hoo I need my safe space" they said mockingly while crying that someone thinks they're racist for making racist jokes.

Change isn't ALWAYS the answer, newer isn't ALWAYS better, but like the saying sort of goes "when I became an adult, I gave up childish things" and you know what that doesn't just go for individuals that goes for societies too.

America isn't a child anymore. If bullies can "grow out of it" it's time we did.

"In my day we didn't need..." In your day we didn't know about this shit, much less care about it. Now we do know about it. Now we need to deal with it.

Gender Reversed Twilight

Okay so I bought the fucking gender reversed Twilight. Fuck you.

I did so for two reasons: Curiosity, and a desire to encourage (if the purchase of one book could make any difference) the proliferation of paranormal romance stories where it's the woman who's got the superpowers. (I mean, I didn't give a shit about Sookie and Bill, but I shipped Hoyt and Jess)

So my hope is that the character dynamic will be the same. (Oh I should start by saying that I can really only compare this to the movies, and second hand info about the original. I have, as yet, no interest in reading it.) By which I mean that the Vampire (Edythe in this story) is the dominant party, acting like the predator that she is by nature. That's also where some of the curiosity comes in. Will she come across as controlling, stalkery and borderline emotionally abusive? And if so, will it bug me as much as Edward did?

I'm worried however that Beau, being the man, will somehow become the controlling force. So far so good.

Anyway, here are my observations, recorded as I read the book.

My impressions so far: the side characters are clearly there only as set dressing. Included only because Ms. Meyer couldn't write a book with only the two leads. I feel like the idea might be to suggest that Beau/Bella's life is so empty that of course he/she would gravitate to the Elves. I mean Vampires. (seriously the intro of the Cullens reminded me of some descriptions of the Fae) But I'm still getting the impression that Beau is kind of empty himself. My defense of Kristin Stewart in the films is that she's playing a character who's completely dead inside. Meyer claims that Bella was written that way deliberately so that the readers could easily put themselves in her place.

I'm not really relating to this dude much at all. Mostly because I'm a pluviophile and he detests the rain.

I do like that his reaction to Edyth's reaction to him is terror. I got the impression from the movie that Bella was insulted and pissed at Edward. (In the intro to this version Meyer says she downplayed the rage) Now he's relieved when she doesn't show up, though he's still waiting for the other shoe to drop.


Now he's carrying on a conversation with a woman who's seeming more unstable by the word. I mean come on, her being nice to you a week after she looked at you like she was gonna kill you (and I don't mean metaphorically) should be a warning sign. Though I suppose she could just be back on her meds.

Twilight Vampires can't glamour can they? That would explain (beyond the hormonal “preeeeety” response) why he's revealing all these personal details here. At least he's as confused about that as I am. (Meyer also says in the intro that she fixed some shit in here.)

Jesus fuck is vollyball the only gym activity they have at that school?

Was Bella this self aware? No, no you should not be excited to see the girl who may still want to kill you. I'm glad you're aware of that. I also must admit I liked the line “I wasn't interesting enough to hate.”

If the movie's depiction of Bella pressuring Edward for sex was accurate to the book, then that's gonna make Beau seem a bit like a douchebag.

Still Later...

I'm cutting Beau some slack because he's a teenage boy. And I have just enough recollection of being one myself that I can forgive some of his idiotic tendencies. Oh how I remember what it's like to have a hopeless crush. And yeah okay she saved his life in a superheroish manner and is all mysterious.

The gender swap actually makes the inexplicable attention everyone's paying our “hero” slightly less inexplicable. No he's not interesting, he himself doesn't think he's very good looking, and he seems to mostly be ignoring all of these people who think they're his friends, but while Bella being the sheriff's daughter might intimidate people, Beau being the sheriff's son kinda makes him quite the elligable bachelor.

Oh and I guess I can sort of forgive his attitude about the people and town of Forks. I mean he's clearly just marking time till he graduates and no longer needs an adult guardian.

Now I'm guessing that his attitude about everyone worrying about him stems from the fact that he's mostly been taking care of himself and his parent for much of his life. So it's annoying to have to rely on others, or have them even try to take care of him. If Bella was the same, it's uh, interesing? Odd? That they'd be okay with Edward/Edyth wanting to do just that. It's only okay if they're super pretty? I'm not liking that message any more than I liked the ones I got from Twilight: Ditch your quirky friends so you can hang out with the bland but pretty, cool kids, and stalking is romantic.

And Later Still...

Holy shit, in reversing the genders, Meyer has essentially written a harem anime.


One of the things that's annoying me, is Beau's scoffing at the idea of Edyth being dangerous. Dude, when you first met her you legit thought she wanted to murder. And hey, you were right. This I think is a weakness in the writing, like Meyer forgot she'd written that. There's a few inconsistencies like that. Edyth's continuing to talk to Beau even after she warns him off (she initiates it every time) does strike me as something an abusive partner would do, keeping their victim off balance.

I personally think it'd be more interesting if Beau was in fact, terrified of Edyth, but drawn to her regardless.

Edyth's little touches of over-protectiveness; “here wear my scarf”, “I brought you a jacket, don't want you catching cold”, “put on your seatbelt even though I'm very confident in my ability to not crash, and if I do crash going at this speed the seatbelt probably won't help” strike me as less patronizing, and more ignorant. As if she remembers the mortals are fragile, but doesn't grasp the realities of it.

I do like little touches of Edyth. Her sense of humor, when she brushes his hair out of his face, her “Try not to get caught up in antiquated gender roles” quip. And then Beau insists on holding the door, and it could have been a assertion of equality; “You paid so I'm gonna get the door”, but it really did come across as “I'm the man I need to hold the door”. Slightly insulting it seems to me. (there was something else he said or did that struck me as insulting to her and I can't recall what it was now)

Jules seems to be the best written character so far.

If Meyer does do this with more of the series, I wonder how she'll handle the Jake taking off his shirt to used as a bandage scene? Or is that only in the movie? I hope she's still ripped.

Okay well, spoiler alert, she skipped right to the end of the series. And I'm revisiting this essay months after reading the book, and there's no further notes so I guess I had nothing left to add.

Fairy Tales and Horror

It seems to me, that most fairy tales are adventure stories, or romances. Many have horrific elements, but on the whole the intent is not to scare us. They can be written as horror of course. I've read both Sleeping Beauty and Snow White as horror (both by Neil Gaiman), but even then Sleeping Beauty was as much adventure as anything else.

But then there are some that are already horror stories. You won't find Hansel and Gretel in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, but it too is a horror folk-tale passed down from generation to generation. It's a premise that's been repeated time and again: The unsuspecting protagonist(s) is/are lured in, or take shelter, only to find themselves trapped by a monster who means them harm. Shades of this tale can be found in Psycho, Hostel, The People Under the Stairs and Don't Breathe (the witch is even blind in some versions) to name just a few. Here we even have probably one of the earliest examples of the trope of the final girl.

(It's also interesting to note that "don't take candy from strangers" is such old wisdom)

Little Red Riding Hood is not usually presented as horror, per se. At least that's not the impression I get. Perhaps that's because in most versions these days, both Red and her Granny are both fine at the end of the story. But really, this is a truly terrifying situation. Someone you love, has been replaced by something sinister. Something hungry and malicious. I wonder, was it always a wolf? Perhaps it was some sort of shapeshifting monster, or a malevolent Faerie casting a glamour.

Here we find so many horror monsters in one trope. Demonic possession, Vampires, Dopplegangers and even Invasion of the Body Snatchers. There is a novel called The Nightmare People that perfectly encapsulates this.

Ah but then there are the "real life" horrors Red Riding Hood reflects. The online predator that discovers your personal information. Perhaps by pretending to be a charming, handsome (or beautiful) confidante. Or even the abusive parent or spouse. Suddenly this person you love has become (or rather revealed themselves to be) a monster.

So many Fairy Tales have been...watered down, I suppose you could say. Even the scary ones. The horrific elements are removed, or softened. I wonder, in a hundred years time or so, will our modern horror or horror adventures get the same treatment? There's already people doing Dr. Seuss versions of Lovecraft and John Carpenter movies. They're doing it ironically, but suppose someday our descendants are watching Disnified versions of Dracula...actually bad example, that's largely already happened. Let's go with something even more bizaare, suppose Hellraiser, or Friday the 13th got the Disney treatment. And Pinhead and Jason become no more threatening to us than the Witch or the Big Bad Wolf.

And someone will say, you know, once upon a time, these stories were supposed to be really scary.

Urban Legends

I'm rather into folklore and urban legends and shit. (by the way I've been watching Kevin Smith Q&A's so I might channel him a bit in my style here) Mostly if they've got some kinda supernatural/horror motif, but even without that, I'm interested in how they survive, and change.

Like the Phantom Hitchhiker has been around for hundreds of years. Okay maybe not that long but since we were all riding horses instead of driving cars at least.

So I'm reading this book (actually two books by the same dude) about that very subject, and come to find out that the Hook man story actually dates back to at least the 1500's. Dude's riding his horse and some other guy jumps out of the woods and grabs at the horse's bridle, and he's all "Your money or your life" and shit, and the intended victim just whips out his sword, takes a swing and keeps going. So he gets back home, and the groom takes the horse back to the stable, and hanging on the bridle is the robber's fucking hand.

This kinda thing interests me. Like I wrote a Firefly fan-fic a while ago where the crew were gathered around telling ghost stories, and I came up with space-age versions of the classics. Wash tells the Phantom Hitchhiker, it's a girl in a shuttle that's adrift. Mal tells about the ghosts that fuckin' push cars up the hill.

And one of the other things that I thought about was "I wonder how far back some of these stories go." And I even came up with a pre-car version of Highbeams. I made it up, I didn't find it. But like, someone's driving their wagon late at night and some dude is behind 'em on a horse and every now and then, for no fucking reason at all (remember what I said about Kevin Smith?) he shouts "I see you!"

Which in no way brings me to this next part: One of the stories I found in these two books is about these three ladies on an elevator, who freak out when a black dude with a dog gets on with 'em. He says "Sit!" and, casual racists that they are, they do so. And he, being a very nice man doesn't get offended, rather he apologizes and explains that he was talking to his dog. So the women are all embarrassed and explain that they're visiting the city and even ask if he can recommend a good place for dinner.

The punchline of the story is that the dude was Reggie Jackson (or depending on the story, some other black athlete. Always an athlete for some reason, I guess at the time they were telling this story there weren't any black movie stars and the musicians wouldn't be recognizable names to all the honkies.) and he winds up paying their bill.

I'm reading this story and thinking "I could totally update this one." Like you could replace the black dude with a white guy all tatted up. Or put an Arabic dude in there. Or, because I wondered if you could make it work if you reversed the races:

So there were these three black ladies on an elevator and a white cop gets on with his dog...

Wouldn't that work? Like there was one version of the story where the women (it's always women in these tales) were advised "Never resist a mugger. Just do whatever they say, it's not worth getting hurt."

Well what are they always saying now? "Never resist the cops, just do whatever they say, it's not worth getting killed."

One Man's Heaven (script version)

One Man’s Heaven…

Int. Bedroom.
In a confused close up, possibly POV shot, we see a girl with long dark hair screaming and bringing a knife down over and over. Blood sprays.

Int. Car.
Tom lies asleep in the driver’s seat, covered by a trench coat. The seat is reclined all the way, and a wide brimmed fedora style had lies on the passenger side. It is raining.

He wakes up blearily and takes in his surroundings. He is clearly confused, but not concerned about where he is.

Ext. Rest Stop
Tom’s car sits in an empty parking lot at a rest area off a mountain interstate. It is still raining.

Tom exits the car, wearing his coat and hat. He stretches, enjoys the rain for a moment, and then heads for the rest rooms.

Among the trees stands the girl from the opening shot. The rain has soaked her and she has a slightly grudge-like appearance. Tom does not see her.

Int. Bathroom.
Tom exits the stall and washes his hands. When he looks up into the mirror, we see the girl a few paces away. He does not see her.

Ext. Rest Stop
Tom stands by his car, looking out at the road.

Well, let’s see where this road leads.

He gets in the car, and pulls out of the lot.

Ext. Road
It is foggy and drizzly, Tom’s car is the only one on the road. Ahead on the right is an exit sign. It reads HAVEN, with an arrow pointing to the ramp.

Almost immediately after exiting the highway, a sign proclaims;


Int. Car
Tom smiles at that.

Nice touch.

Ext. Main Street
As Tom drives into town he passes a few scattered homes and pedestrians. Many of them wave at him as he passes by. But some look miserable, or eye the car desperately. These seem to be wetter, perhaps wearing less protection against the elements, or at the very least, not enjoying the weather as much as others.

Ext. Downtown
The downtown area of Haven resembles any number of small town historic districts. It is of course, still raining.

Tom parks along the side of the street and gets out. Almost immediately a police cruiser pulls up behind him. Tom eyes it warily, the first sign of unease.

The window rolls down and SERA pokes her head out. She’s wearing the obligatory hat and shades, but despite these accoutrements she comes across as friendly and good natured.

Hello there! New in town?

Just passing through.

Well that’s a shame. You sure?

Sera’s POV. Tom stands, relaxed by her friendliness, but the focus of her attention is the girl standing, now just behind him. The girl seems to have been caught in the act of reaching for him, but recoils.

Int. Bedroom
A longer shot of the opening scene. The girl is slashing and stabbing wildly, screaming and crying. We still can’t see who she’s attacking, but we hear a man grunting in agony, weakly. We can just make out that the girl is screaming “mine”.

Ext. Downtown
Tom laughs.

To be honest, no. But I have no idea how long I’ll be staying, or where I’m headed.

I hear that more often than you know. Hang on.
Sera steps out of the cruiser and extends a hand.

I’m Sheriff Sera.


He shakes her hand.

Well Tom, welcome to Haven. I try to be the welcome wagon
around here as well as the sheriff. You eaten yet?

Actually no. Can you recommend a place?

The girl approaches again, reaching out for Tom. Sera smoothly places herself between them, indicating down the street.

I can do better than that. C’mon, I’ll buy you a cup of cocoa.

Tom is a little surprised.

Are you this friendly to everyone?

Small town friendliness, it takes some getting used to.

GIRL’S POV. Everything is the same, yet somehow darker, gloomier, more oppressive. The red of the sign is likewise unpleasant.

Ext. Diner
There is a red neon sign reading “ABLE’S”. The interior is bright and cheery as we can see through the window. Through the girl’s POV, the contrast to the friendly atmosphere of the diner, and the wet gloom of the town is sharp.

Int. Diner
There are a few patrons inside enjoying each other’s company or food. There is one woman looking slightly glumly out the window however, a half finished waffle in front of her.

Sera and Tom enter and are greeted by Able, the young man behind the counter.

Int. Diner – Later
Tom has quite a spread in front of him, plus the cup of cocoa that Sera bought him.
Angled from over Sera’s shoulder, we can see through the window, and the girl is standing outside, her hand pressed against the glass.

So, if you were to stay…

Where would I stay?

INT. Apartment.
In what used to be a large garage/small barn, a one room apartment has been set up. The majority is taken up by a large sitting room. On the far end from the door is a small kitchen with a bathroom just off of that. There is a spiral staircase going up to a loft bedroom.

Sera and Tom enter, led by the landlord.

You’re in luck, just became available today.

Tom looks around, clearly impressed.

It’s beautiful.

Ext. Log Cabin
At the end of a long drive is a medium sized, comfortable looking cabin, nestled amongst tall trees. Sera’s squad car pulls up to the house and she gets out, and goes to the door.

Cain you home?

There is no answer. After a moment she sighs and walks to a small trail leading into the woods.

Ext. Cliff Top
A small picnic area has been set up on a bluff over looking the sea. A tall man in a black coat and wide brimmed hat sits atop one of the tables, his feet on the bench. He gazes out to see with an odd haunted, but contented look.

Brooding again?

I like brooding.

The man, Cain, turns and gives her a wan smile.

It’s soothing. You should try it.

No thanks, I’ll stick to meditating.

She sits beside him on the table.

Are you here to once again try to convince me to give up
my solitary vigil and move into town?

Or visit. But no. Though the offer’s still open.
Your brother would be glad to see you.
No I just wanted to pass on some news. We got a couple in today.

You say that like it’s unprecedented. It’s not.

This is. Murder suicide.

This shocks Cain into looking away from the ocean at his companion.

And they both came here?

Yep. I don’t know if this place would have been her
destination normally, but it seems like part of the penalty
is being near him.

Does he know?

No I don’t think he can see her. I haven’t let her touch him
but I don’t think he’d feel her if she did. Hell, kid doesn’t even know
he’s dead yet.

Well. Won’t this be interesting. I may have to come
visit town after all.

Ext. City Park
Tom is stretched out on a bench with his coat draped over him as a blanket and an umbrella sheltering his head from the rain. Crouched at the end near his feet is the spooky girl.

Sera approaches, smiling when she spots him, but gives the girl a stern look.
He apparently hears her and sits up.

Don’t let me disturb you.

No that’s ok. Just relaxing. What brings you here? Checking up on me?
And do you ever take off that hat and glasses?

Nope. They’re permanently affixed to my face.
And you’re not the only one who likes to relax here.
But since I’m here and you’re up, you mind if I join you?

No, go ahead. There’s actually something I wanted to ask you.

I thought there might be.

She settles on the bench, just out of the shelter of the umbrella.
Tom takes a moment to gather his thoughts.

I’m dead aren’t I.


Thought so. That apartment was just too good to be true.
That plus the town and the weather…I was like ‘I’ve died and gone to, ohhhh’.

Sera snickers.

I don’t remember dying.

Do you want to?

I …guess not. That means it was pretty bad doesn’t it.

She doesn’t answer.

So what happens now? Is this heaven?

As far as everyone you’ve seen is concerned, yes.
This town changes just slightly with every new person who comes.
The only thing that stays absolutely the same, is the weather.
If you look around, you’ll find parts of it that seem like
New York, or any other large city. If you’re interested in finding it.
There’s a beach area too. Cause the folks who wind up here,
like the beach in rainy weather. Though, we do get the occasional sunny day.
Just for variety I suppose.

What would have happened if I’d gone the other way on the road?
Would I have wound up as like, a ghost or something?

I think so. That’s not my department. That would have been like,
going back the way you came.

Is there a way to leave?

There’s plenty of ways to leave. Well, three really,
driving, walking, or you can take a boat. But there’s lots of
roads or trails to choose from. Some folks, after they stay
here for a while decide it’s time too move on I suppose. And they leave.

Where do they go?

I have no idea.

INT. Bedroom
An even clearer version of the scene. Now we can see that Tom is handcuffed to the bed, covered with blood. His screams are muffled as if he is gagged, as the girl cuts and stabs him over and over, screaming.

INT. Diner
Tom is at the counter, the girl sitting forlornely next to him. He still does not see her. Abel gives her a mug of hot chocolate, which shocks her out of staring desperately at Tom. This is the only acknowledgement of her presence however.

They’re around. Maybe as many as the folks
who want to be here. But you have to want
to see them.

He busies himself behind the counter, taking a pie out of the oven and sets it on the counter.

You love the rain. You find it peaceful, beautiful.
There’s a word for it.


That’s the one. Well I’m sure it’s no revelation that
there’s those who find it gloomy, depressing, uncomfortable
and even scary. Well, lots of those come here too.
Same place, different point of view.

Why haven't I seen any?

Do you want to?

One Man's Heaven...

One Man’s Heaven…

It was raining. That was the first thing he noticed as he slowly awakened. The rain fell on the roof and windshield of his car, making a soothing drumming sound. He yawned and stretched, allowing himself to get acquainted with his surroundings.
The driver’s seat was reclined all the way back, making a crude but comfortable bed. His trenchcoat was draped over him like a blanket, but it was warm enough that he wasn’t sure it was really necessary. All he could see of the world outside his car was a gray mist, and even that was obscured by the sheets of water cascading down his windows.

Eventually he decided to sit up and see if he could figure out where he was. He realized he didn’t know, nor really care, how he had gotten there. This was his car, but he didn’t recall driving it to…

With the seat back in it’s upright position he was able to get a better view. It appeared to be a rest area of some sort off the interstate. The area was heavily forested, and he was getting a mountainy impression as well.

Now he was certain. Nothing looked familiar, and he had no recollection of taking a long car trip lately. But he also found he wasn’t concerned about that. The area looked nice, and he could hardly ever feel uptight when it was raining. He’d always preferred rainy weather. Failing that he liked mist or fog, or even just cloudy. Granted if it was cloudy but never rained, he felt cheated.

After a while of just relaxing, listening to the rain, he decided to stretch his legs. A quick search of the car revealed that his wide brimmed fedora style hat was sitting on the passenger seat. Well at least he’d come prepared.

He’d originally bought the hat to help keep the sun off. But he’d found that it worked just as well to keep the rain off his face. And he liked the sound the rain made on it too.

By the time he stepped out of the car, the downpour had faded to a gentle shower. His was the only car in the lot. The emptiness struck him as slightly melancholy, but, that too was something he liked. He wondered, as he made his way to the rest rooms, where it was he had been going.

Now that he was awake, he might as well get going to wherever it was, and find out. At the very least maybe he could find a town, and therefore, food. Perhaps get his bearings.

He hadn’t driven far (and he noticed with mild curiosity that his was the only car on the road), before he finally saw an exit sign, and practically immediately after leaving the interstate he saw the sign welcoming him to Haven.

Just Haven. No population count, no “Est. 1800” or suchlike. Just the name of the town, and in smaller letters underneath; “Make yourself at home”.

“Heh.” He said to himself. “Nice touch.”

He passed a few small roads leading off into the forest, but stuck to the main road. Eventually he began to pass pleasant looking houses, some big, some small but cozy. Here he finally started to see signs of life. He passed a few cars, but there were more people out walking. Many of them waved.

The town proper reminded him of any number of small town “downtown” areas he’d seen in his travels. But like the houses he passed, it was a hodgepodge of old and new, extravagant and simple. It gave the impression of a place that had been around for a very long time, and would remain for even longer.

The rain had picked up again by the time he parked, but he decided to go for a stroll regardless. He might get soaked, but every now and then, that was okay. For the moment his hat and coat would protect most of him anyway.

It seemed as if he’d barely closed his door then a police cruiser pulled up and parked behind him. The driver’s window rolled down and a state trooper, wearing the obligatory hat and shades poked her head out.

“Hello there!” she called, with a friendly smile. “New in town?”

Coaxed by her smile and tone, he approached. He’d felt momentarily uneasy, thinking that perhaps despite the welcome sign, the local constabulary weren’t that eager for visitors to stick around.

“Just passing through.” He said.

She pursed her lips, looking disappointed. “Well that’s a shame, you sure?”

At that, he laughed. This was friendliness on a scale he’d not imagined.
“Well to be honest,” he shrugged. “No. But I dunno how long I’ll be staying, or where I’m headed.”

“I hear that more often than you’d think.” She chuckled. “Hold on.” She got out of her car and extended a hand. “I’m Sheriff Sera.”

“Tom.” He introduced himself, shaking her hand. She had a strong, but gentle grip. And while Tom tried not to be the typical “guy”, he couldn’t help noticing that she had very nice hands, and a rather attractive mouth. The rest of her was rather obscured by the uniform.

“Well Tom, I try to be the welcome wagon around her as well as the sheriff. Though occasionally some folk beat me to it. You eaten yet?”

“No I haven’t.” His stomach rumbled as if to emphasize this. “Can you recommend a good place?”

“Now what kind of welcome wagon would I be if I just did that? C’mon, I’ll buy you a cup of cocoa.”

Tom really was taken aback. Apparently his surprise showed.

“Small town friendliness.” She said. “Takes some getting used to.”

She led him to a diner about a block away. The sign above read “Able’s” in bright, cheery red neon. The effect with the mist and the rain was particularly welcoming.
There were a few other patrons in the diner but not many. One or two glanced curiously his way, but for the most part they kept to themselves. Which was probably just as well. Tom was not an anti-social person, but if everyone he ran into had been outgoing and gregarious, he might have gotten creeped out.

“Got to him first I see.” Said the man behind the counter. He was a young man, younger even than Tom, but there was something in his eyes that spoke of being much much older.

Tom glanced at her, and she shrugged. “New folks in town tend to wander into Abel’s on their own even if I don’t greet ‘em.” She turned to the man. “The Welcome Special, A.”

“What’s the welcome special?”

“Waffles, bacon, eggs and cocoa. You want any marshmallows?” A, presumably Abel, answered.

Soon, they were sitting in a booth, cups of cocoa before them, and food on it’s way. Tom gazed out the window, just letting the mug warm his hands. There was a park across the street where a small child in a red rain-coat was gleefully splashing in puddles.

“So,” he said, turning back to Sera, “If I did decide to stay…”


“You’re in luck. Just became available today.”

Sera had introduced Tom to one of the locals who owned an old office building, that he had converted into apartments. While none of those were available he did have one option.

Not far from his own house, said landlord had converted a small barn into a one room apartment. The majority of it was taken up by a large living room. On the far end from the door was a small kitchen with a bathroom just off of that. There was a spiral staircase going up to a loft bedroom.

Tom looked around, charmed. “It’s beautiful. How much is the rent?”


Tom had spent a day exploring, and after finding the library, arcade and theater, he decided to take a break from his meanderings.

One of the larger parks in Haven had a lake, and trails. It also had gardens with benches scattered about. Tom’s break consisted of lying on one of the benches, his duster once again acting as a blanket, and a newly acquired umbrella covering his head. He awoke from his nap to the sounds of booted footseeps. Raising the umbrella he saw, with very little surprise, Sheriff Sera.

“Don’t let me disturb you.” She said.

“No that’s ok. Just relaxing.” He sat up, making room on the bench. “What brings you here? Checking up on me? And do you ever take off that hat and glasses?”

“Nope. They’re permanently affixed to my face.” She said it so casually that it could have been a statement of fact. “And you’re not the only one who likes to relax here.” She gestured to the bench. “But since I’m here and you’re up, you mind if I join you?”

“No, go ahead. There’s actually something I wanted to ask you.”

“I thought there might be.” She settled on the bench, just out of the shelter of the umbrella.

Tom took a moment to watch the raindrops in a puddle before saying; “I’m dead aren’t I.”

“Yep.” She answered calmly.

“Thought so.” For a brief time he had completely blanked on the landlord’s answer to his question about rent. But when he realized where he probably was, the memory returned that there was no rent.

“That apartment was just too good to be true. That plus the town and the weather…I was like ‘I’ve died and gone to, ohhhh’.”

Sera snickered.

“I don’t remember dying.” He went on.

“Do you want to?”

“I …guess not. That means it was pretty bad doesn’t it.”

She didn’t answer, but she didn’t need to.

“So what happens now? Is this heaven?”

“As far as everyone you’ve seen is concerned, yes.”

Well that was a very interesting way of saying it.

“This town changes just slightly with every new person who comes. The only thing that stays absolutely the same, is the weather. If you look around, you’ll find parts of it that seem like New York, or any other large city. Or super rural. If you’re interested in finding it. There’s a beach area too. Cause the folks who wind up here, like the beach in rainy weather. Though, we do get the occasional sunny day. Just for variety I suppose.”

“What would have happened if I’d gone the other way on the road? Would I have wound up as like, a ghost or something?”

“I think so. That’s not my department. That would have been like, going back the way you came.”

“Is there a way to leave?”

“There’s plenty of ways to leave. Well, three really, driving, walking, or you can take a boat. But there’s lots of roads or trails to choose from. Some folks, after they stay here for a while decide it’s time too move on I suppose. And they leave.”

“Where do they go?”

“I have no idea.”


The way Sera had said “as far as anyone you've seen is concerned” had sparked a notion in Tom's mind. Perhaps there were folks around who didn't want to be here?

“They’re around.” Able said solemnly. “Maybe as many as the folks who want to be here. But you have to want to see them.” He set the pie he’d just taken out of the oven onto the counter to cool. “You love the rain. You find it peaceful, beautiful. There’s a word for it.”

“Pluviophile.” Tom supplied. He’d been so happy to learn there was an actual term for his weather preference.

“That’s the one. Well I’m sure it’s no revelation that there’s those who find it gloomy, depressing, uncomfortable and even scary. Well, lots of those come here too. Same place, different point of view.”

“Why haven't I seen any?”

“Do you want to?”

“If I see them, can I help them?”

“You can try.” Able nodded. “Pie?”

“No thanks, but I’d love some of that cake.”

Able cut him a slice of and poured him a glass of milk to go with it. “I do.” He went on. “Offer them food, or warm dry clothing. There’s even a shelter. But…most of the time they’re so mired in their own misery…well, best not to push too hard. You’ll probably only depress yourself.”


Tom had been in town several “days” before he saw her. He was catching up on some of his reading, sitting at the window in his loft, occasionally glancing out, and there she was.

Standing huddled against a tree across the street, her wet clothes plastered to her body. Her hair hung over her face, and in the rain she made for a ghostly sight. He barely hesitated before he snatched a blanket from his bed and dashed outside. But by the time he got there, she was gone.

Was it his imagination, or was it slightly darker now? Gloomier just in this one spot? Maybe it was just the knowledge that someone miserable had been here not long ago. Of course if she was in “hell” maybe it was just as well that he'd missed her. But for just a moment, he'd felt like she seemed familiar somehow.

These Are the Voyages...

It's been a long road time since I've posted in here. I'm afraid to look to see just how long.

But I wanted to write down my thoughts on the finale of Star Trek Enterprise.

I'd like to see a commentary on this episode. Because I find myself curious as to why they went the direction they did. I'm guessing, that they had just enough notice of the cancellation to make a final episode. That's why at the end of the second to last ep, they said it'd still take years to finalize the alliance. And they wanted to end the series with that alliance so they had to jump ahead a few years. Okay so why not just do it?

Why make it a holodeck simulation? And why that particular time? I think it'd make more sense to have done it where we last left off with the Trek Universe (remember the reboot hadn't happened yet). You would have saved on makeup for Troi and Riker to make them younger for one thing. They could be about to have the Romulan Empire and the Federation sign a big historic agreement or something. That would have made perfect sense to then observe via holodeck the formation of the Federation.

It must have been a specific choice to use that particular episode. And I just didn't quite get the connection I'm afraid. And why that kind of story? Helping Shran foil some interstellar mobsters? Sure I wanted to see Shran again but that wouldn't have been hard. Why not focus the entire episode on the fact that they were about to make history?

Because they wanted some action, they wanted the drama of killing off one of the characters, and they didn't have two hours like TNG, DS9 and VOY did?

All that aside, the writing on this episode was kinda good. Any idiosyncracies in performance, dialogue and such I put down to the fact that for the Enterprise crew, it's been six years since we last saw them. And the fact that anything in there is all at least second hand. That program was most likely based on news stories, personal logs and sensor logs and such. All that's gonna make things kinda garbled. They did a good job of that.

I'm sure there was something else I wanted to say, but can't think of it now.

ICreate Industries

I have begun blogging and reviewing for a company called ICreate Industries. It's a place started by some friends of mine. We're trying to get our name out there and the word onto the street. Basically we're a copying/duplication/designing biz. You got a movie you made or a cd to sell? Need lots of copies of it? We can do that. Want someone to design you a cover for same? We can do that. We can do the same for demos as well.

So please, check out ICreateindustries.com. I'm hoping eventually they'll be able to pay me. :)