Jesus has the Wheels

Jesus has the Wheels

by

Blaine Arcade

It was rare to see such a nice car in Watershed, and even rarer to see one driving with purpose, never stopping once for the driver to swear at their GPS until it got them out of that mosquito-infested and mosquito-invested bog that called itself a town.

Tom knew cars, on account of a few years working as a mechanic, and he couldn’t recall if he’d ever even worked on such a fine piece of machinery. He expected it to drive on by, as nobody sitting in that sort of thing could have any business with him, but it stopped, for the first time in days, at the foot of his gravel driveway. Continue reading

Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner

Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner
(click here for audiobook)

Rethought
Resized
Rewritten
Rerhymed
Retold

by

Blaine Arcade
who has shamelessly molded it from Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner 


Argument

In which a harmonious utopia is upset by the harmony's approaching finale, and how one subject journeys with subjects of his own in search of the responsible musicians, only to find themselves beset by monsters, divine jailers, and the collapsing forces of nature.




Part Triangle

First it was saved, then it arrived
for them the date of dates
on the invitation described
1798

Continue reading

Little Nightmares 2 Lore Exploration

(Spoiler warning: full spoilers for Little Nightmares 1 and 2)

Little_Nightmares_Cover_Art

If you’re unfamiliar, Little Nightmares 2 is a horror puzzle-platformer video game developed by Tarsier Studios.  It is a prequel to the first game, and features the first game’s protagonist as a computer-controlled companion.  Players are tasked with navigating a hostile 2.5D world as grimy feral children populated by distorted monstrous adults that attack on sight and, more often than not, kill instantly.

In this post I’ll look to form a cohesive narrative theory of the second game, using only my personal play time and a little light Googling as resources.  This is inherently difficult, given that the world of Little Nightmares, somewhat implied by the title, operates based on dream logic.  Its surreal society draws a distinct line between children and adults, as if the two belong to different species. Continue reading

The Left Challenging Handful (Finale)

(back to part one)

Burn the Handful

The parliament building, which housed the Shoulders of Government, was made out of an old trunk and kept in the highest residential area of the barn: the hayloft. It was fed with several elevators of varying construction as well as by trained birds and their riders. Many of the birds were reassigned as security that day, and so the lip of the loft was covered with the saddled feathery creatures, their beaks making the line look like a living fence of spikes. Continue reading

The Left Challenging Handful (Part Three)

(back to part one)

Knead the Handful

Forty Myrmidons marched across the walls of Minimil after a hard day’s work. Marching sideways was possible for them, as long as they stayed on all fours, thanks to the clasping hooks on the wrists and ankles of their exoskeletons. Their progress would’ve been extremely slow if not for the divot network.

It was invisible from a distance, which in Minimil was anything greater than two meters. Up close it could be seen as nothing more than even rows of gouge marks in the old wood of the barn walls. Their purpose was to provide footholds to any and all arthropod citizens capable of wall-crawling, the most numerous of which were the Myrmidons. Continue reading

The Left Challenging Handful (Part Two)

(back to part one)

Spread the Handful

The innkeeper thought she rose plenty early to start preparing breakfast for her handful of guests, but when she stepped down from her quarters into the tavern she found it transformed by makeshift houseplants, created by an even earlier bird.

Delicious was roaming about, watering them with single droplets, using a can lifted from the dead garden’s piled tools. She hummed a tune all the while, but by the time she made a complete lap the gnome couldn’t help but sing a verse.

-I long to see the girl I left behind meee!” When she stopped to breathe she noticed Miss Marood. “Oh, I’m sorry! Did I wake you?” Continue reading

The Left Challenging Handful (Part One)

The small have their own country, and it fits in a barn!  The place is called Minimil, and it is home to Lilliputians, Shakespearian fairies, and the angels and devils of the shoulder that help you make all your decisions.  Minimil doesn’t yet know it, but it is under attack from an elite team of scoundrels in its gutters, threatened into service by an unknown entity.  They will sabotage the tiny government, to keep their heads and achieve their wildest dreams.
This is the second in a trilogy, though each novella tells its own whole story.  To get caught up please check out the original: The Challenging Handful.

The Left Challenging Handful

by

Blaine Arcade

Pinch the Handful

Typically a man of his stature would have no trouble moving through tight spaces. At only fifteen centimeters tall there were several carved conch shells among the furniture in his palace that were positively roomy, but this welcome, if that’s what it was, was far from that.

He was squeezed front and back by musty wood, the only way to orient himself being the various splinters poking the capitals on the map of his body. The predicament was made all the tighter by the finery he rarely took off: a crown of fused amber glass, shoulder pads of the same, a layered cape of blue and white like ocean waves lapping at the sand, and the decorated saber sheath on his hip. Continue reading

Twenty-four Days of Ringworm and Religion: Christmas Eve Finale

Welcome to what is likely your first advent calendar fantasy novel!  Each day is a chapter, and should be read as such, but who am I to stop you from catching up? (This way to Day One!)  What follows is the story of one Marzipan Ridner, a young trans girl aching for the fulfillment of the holiday season.  When a mysterious wooden Advent calendar shows up she opens the first door, and finds herself whisked away to a world-tree of contrasting deities and binding bureaucracy.  She has less than a month to find someone willing to be her spiritual patron, but the denizens of the tree don’t seem very hospitable…

On the Twenty-fourth Day

Without scavenging for dead things in her backyard each day, Marzipan’s stockpile of sacrifices had run dry. She ended up picking some friend chicken bones out of the trash, the remains of Mom’s dinner the previous night. Continue reading

Twenty-four Days of Ringworm and Religion: Day Twenty-three

Welcome to what is likely your first advent calendar fantasy novel!  Each day is a chapter, and should be read as such, but who am I to stop you from catching up? (This way to Day One!)  What follows is the story of one Marzipan Ridner, a young trans girl aching for the fulfillment of the holiday season.  When a mysterious wooden Advent calendar shows up she opens the first door, and finds herself whisked away to a world-tree of contrasting deities and binding bureaucracy.  She has less than a month to find someone willing to be her spiritual patron, but the denizens of the tree don’t seem very hospitable…

On the Twenty-third Day

Though they didn’t care whether or not they ruined Saint Bernardino, both Marzipan and Langcorn were fully committed to the last two legs of their journey. They wanted Christmas eve to be an emergency day in case anything went wrong, so they decided to take a risk and hopefully save nearly a day of travel on door number twenty-three. They each, during that morning in their respective eras, took up a nail and attacked the tiny door frame on their calendar. Continue reading