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Undeath (draft)

One does not recognize breathing. It’s a simple process, in essence, with a complicated and nuanced explanation. It’s fundamentals permeate many living things thoughtlessly, yet it's crucially pivotal to their survival.

As existentially simple creatures respire, so too do I hate. I hate incongruently in the face of life. My rage has raised me up from the desiccated shambles of oblivion, turning the cripplingly piteous carcass that may have once beared a name into a machine of vengeance and annihilation.

My apathy, nay contempt for the workings of life sustain my now abominable form.

Once I was a pittance. A creature of inept, and cosmically futile origins. Tortured, twisted and disfigured for reasons lacking truth and rationality. Abandoned by my own kind to the fate of the forgettable wretch that I was.

Why then, if all I have is enmity, have I risen? My comprehension of my return is paralleled only by my indifference to it. All I know is my current purpose, to bring ruin.

I lived as a universal dead end of no consequence, and by all I know, I will ensure that’s how life as it is known ends as well.

As I wake from the nightmare, all I can feel is fear. Sadness and isolation have built me into a cowardly nave. I have these dreams often, and although I call them nightmares, they’re the best I ever have.

Somehow, somewhere it’s possible that I’m strong, in body and conviction. I have a purpose. I escape my mortal coil, and all the indignation associated with it. Transcending the memetic evolution of a farcical existence. I want to be that, so terribly badly, and bring pride to my family's clandestine shame.

There’s a dark secret, a neglected history in my lineage. An ancestry of violence and the occult. My progenitors unlocked the key to ‘eternal life’, if it can truly be called that. The unliving existence of a Revenant. I’ve only ever been too weak and scared to commit my feeble mind and body to such grace.

I open my drapes slowly, as to not blind myself with the finely honed knives the sun thrusts through my window. As I look down on a filthy dead end alley, adjacent to a street that may as well have no name, I decide today is the day I will evolve. Today will be different, and I will rise anew.

As if powerless to my enslaved body, I enter the shower and wash the sweat from last night’s delusions of predominance off of my brittle frame. I dress myself in the pathetic garments of society's dregs, and head to my ‘job’.

Monotonously stocking shelves, I hear my name over the PA. Called to the bathrooms, no doubt to purge the indecencies left behind by the next step up in humanity’s food chain. I feel my rage finally building into motivation. My ancestors secret’s swimming in my brain.

The scent is intoxicatingly rich. Drunk on disgust, I have decided this will be the last thing I do as a human to complete my metamorphosis.

The key to undeath is simple, yet unattainable to most. Yes, one must become a true herald of death, but that is merely a means. To proceed to my destenial form, I must kill, and die with the purest rampaging fury in my heart. That will cause it to beat again once my mortality passes the threshold.

As I scrub fecal matter off the wall, a loose piece falls, smearing my hand. My fury ever emboldened, I throw the rag aside and storm out of the bathroom.

Behind the first register is a young girl that could only be described as angelic. Her golden curls catch the light in a way that would make the devil weep. If I was of a lesser purpose, I may have even enjoyed the sight of her.

I quietly, yet swiftly storm up behind her, pull out my keys, and thrust the largest into her neck. Over and over I stab her with the small makeshift shiv.

After the first stab, all I heard were screams. Customers, employees, rattled to the core. The sounds quickly faded into a loud *wub wub wub*. All I now hear is the intensity of my heartbeat. My vision has narrowed to that of a needlepoint.

I drop the keys, and look at the hand with which I defiled the sanctity of life. My index finger has been eviscerated by the teeth of the key from my zealous stabs. As my vision begins to broaden, I look around. There is no one. They have fled the small hardware store. With my non-dominant hand, I still hold the propped up corpse of the now fallen angel, most of her weight leaning against the counter. I drop her, and walk toward the back storage. Picking up a boxcutter, I know this is the time. My transcendence is at hand!

As I drag the knife across my throat, it drops. I haven’t cut all the way across. No matter, I will still certainly pass on, but why? What stopped me? My body’s natural reaction, perhaps. The basic instincts of life fighting back for survival.

Then it dawns on me.

As I fail to breathe normally, the coldness starts to settle in. I couldn’t finish the cut because of the feeling that was washing over me now.

I lay dying, unable to hold onto rage. The last feeling I’d experience blanketed me, holding me tightly in it’s embrace.

I’m afraid.

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Ovidian (talk) 23:26, 8 October 2021 (UTC)

The first block of this story alone feels less like an intro to a story or even a character bio and more like a Sonic the Hedgehog OC character sheet. I get the desire to make your prose flow while using more advanced vocabulary but the way that you have gone about doing so makes the writing feel clunky. It is as if you mugged a thesaurus and took whatever was in the pockets of it and threw it haphazardly into your writing almost as if you were just substituting what you had written previously. That is to say that it very much feels rough to the reader.

Your paragraph structure needs some work as well. You have a habit of leaving lone sentences that should be a part of a block just dangling in the middle of the page making it seem like you wrote more than you actually did while not isolating ideas or concepts particularly well. On a technical note you don't need 3-4 line breaks between paragraphs. One (in Visual mode) or two (in source mode) is fine and gives a consistent, clean look to your writing.

If I could give your story a general mood it would most certainly not be horror but edge. It seems to me that there is little substance to the story beyond anger and attempts to shock the reader and frankly the incel vibes from the part where the main kills just some random girl he works with doesn't do a lot for your work either.

Overall I feel like it is hard to salvage what is essentially a toothily written story about a guy who kills his coworker and himself thinking that he will become immortal as a result. It is not really something that you would find in an anthology of well written horror. Maybe sections of it would be featured in something such as the manifesto of a school shooter but largely it is just not very good on a fundamental level.

I can't really give many notes for what you can do to make it better other than to scrap it and maybe focus more on the "secret to eternal life" concept with the family history. Rebase around that and write for that rather than for gratuitous violence and you might have something on your hands. The key to good horror isn't necessarily to shock the reader with graphic descriptions of the gross or evil but to build up tension in your story as you go along so that when you do get to the conflict you have already captured the reader. Then you can decide where to go from there.