Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Ghost of the Mist


  1. The Dark Lady's Captain

    Fog scrapes the streets of San Francisco. I hide in the pier's fog northwest of Ghirardelli Square. Footsteps clomp in the shadows, quick, two-stepped things, out of sync. I flinch and approach the waterfront. The fog thick like a suffocating pillow.

    A triple-masted boat, something out of yore, bobs in the harbor. A skeletal figure curls its bone fingers. I shiver, but the footsteps near. No place to hide, I board the boat. The skeleton's wrist so thin it reminds me of the girl in the park. An unnatural beauty that needed to be bleached.

    The wood creaks. The skeleton disappears inside the cabin. Buildings float past, bits and pieces of images as if the city was the cloud and not the fog. The skeleton's cabin is labelled "J. Ripper".

    Bony hands erupt through the door, shards of timber falling around me. I'm pulled in. I land a punch in the ribs, bones break. My back screams as I'm slammed against a bed.

    "I've earned a rest. You've earned the captaincy." The skeleton drops his tricorne hat on me.

    Outside the window, the tide pulls our ship away from San Francisco. "My lambs."

    "No more." The skeleton fades.