Latest Forum Posts:


The Chronicles of Claudia Labelle -- Part XXII

The Chronicles of Claudia Labelle -- Part XXII

Claudia receives a book that may be able to help her.




Tunnel so dank and dark,

Where dust begins to collect.

The enclave seen through one flame,

Seven spectators view her kept in chains.

Cold and bare she waits in filth,

Muck dripped from her face, shuddered and dazed.

Legs gashed and slashed, lacerated in pang and pus.

Perverted to the sinful and the depraved.



(I apologize for the rambling, Dearest Reader. . . . For I do not remember writing that.)



Entry XXIX –

I awoke this morning to a knock on my door. I sat up and rubbed my eyes, as my legs were reluctant to step out of bed. I yawned and stretched my arms wide to wake up the muscles in my chest. There was another knock, and finally, I answered whom I was so rudely ignoring. My first thought was that my visitor was Mr. Vukan, wanting to me get ready for another expedition to the lake. My legs twitched at the simple thought of walking all that way once again.

But it came as a surprise that Prior Anders was at the door. His white beard was slightly shorter than I remembered it, and he carried a small book in his arm. “Good morning, Miss Labelle. It has been quite some time since we last spoke.”

“Good morning,” I said, and moved to the side of the door for him to enter my living quarters. As he did, I peeked through the doorway to check if anyone had seen him come in. Nobody was there, so I closed the door and turned back to him. “I apologize for my distance, Prior Anders. I know it has been incredibly disrespectful of me . . . but there have been rumors, you see, that our journey to Sigtuna was of a more . . . Intimate, nature.”

“Ah. I see,” he said, stroking his long white beard for a moment. “And it is because of the opinion of others, that you have neglected me and the study of your gift?”

“No, I have not neglected it. I have studied with what resources I have available in the Library, but much of it is speculation. There is no solid information that I have found on preternatural.”

“Have you had any more visions since our journey to Sigtuna?”

“A couple of them a few weeks ago . . . but I have not seen anything else since then. My study of the subject tends to keep it at bay. I may have learned to keep it under control.”

He sighed and nodded. “It would seem that you and Mr. Jovan Vukan have taken a liking to each other. You both went on some sort of journey yesterday—as per the note left on your desk? I do apologize for my intrusion while you were gone, but it was my hope that I could have spoken with you then.”

“I apologize for my absence, Prior Anders,” I said, and sighed as well. “We traveled to a nearby lake. The open air is what I needed after all this time spent catching up on my English studies.”

“I understand. But, Miss Labelle, I implore thee, if you need anything, anything at all, please do not hesitate to visit me. Day or night. I still offer you this privilege. . . . Do you remember the story of Edda? I worry about you so much.”

“I do remember. And thank you, I will always keep your offer in consideration throughout my time spent at Saint Ansgar Priory.”

“One last thing before I leave you alone,” he said as he moved to my desk, and placed the small book upon it. “This book was written by a Germanic scholar in the late 10th century, whose name has been lost to history. I found this writer's essay stashed away in some isolated ancient ruins during my studies in Holy Roman Empire, and it is written in Latin so you should not have any trouble comprehending the information. Its pages may hold the answers you are looking for.” He then opened the door to my living quarters and gave me one final glance. “You may return the book at your leisure. Good day, Miss Labelle.”

“Good day, Prior Anders.”

Perhaps I should pay him a visit every once in a while. Maybe that would keep him happy. I could see it in his worn eyes: he misses me, he misses me and our conversations. Our practice of the preternatural. . . . or maybe he is just as confused as I am . . .


Claudia Labelle

14th of December 1097






It cannot be denied that there are few in this world, that are born with peculiar talents. Only a few are born architects, few are born artists, few are born musicians, few are born warriors, and a lot of common people require years of training and study to master a craft.

But what of the even fewer people that are born with talents that are more metaphysical in nature? The ones who are so rare in number that they do not have the resources available to study and practice their craft? What of those that are haunted by their talent; subjugated and driven mad by the unknown force that lurks upon them? I am speaking of what I have come to call Mediumship, or simply, a Medium. But before we discuss the characteristics of a Medium in depth, we must first explore the basics of what exactly Mediumship entails.

I have come to define a Medium as a person who is in contact and communication with deceased persons, as a sort of “window” between the realm of the living, and the realm of the dead. A realm by which most of the mankind is not yet able to comprehend the magnitude.

In my dealings with D/death, I have come to understand that Death itself is an entity, an anthropomorphic being that will occasionally interact with the living. Death is tangible, yet intangible, a sort of energized being, that can appear anywhere on Earth. Death is genderless and can take the form of a male or a female or any shape It so chooses to assume.

The earliest depictions of Death as an entity can be found in the desecrated city of Catal Huyuk, where Death is represented as tall, thin and pale in complexion, with vulture-like wings. It would menace the lives of men and women, stealing the soul from the body through means of decapitation.

To the ancient Greeks, the name Thanatos was given to the embodiment of Death. Although, Thanatos was seen as a gentle god, who claimed the souls of the living quietly upon a person's passing. Even the Romans had their god of death: Orcus, who was said to be devoid of flesh and had large black wings on his back. The Romans believed Orcus carried the souls of the dead to the Underworld, which they thought was underneath the surface of the Earth (how wrong they were).

In the north, the Scandinavian cultures believe the goddess of death was a woman, and so named her Hel. The Scandinavian and Germanic people have a much more accurate belief in the realm of death, for they believe Hel resides in Neflheim, a place described as the land of shades. It is believed that Odin (the Norse equivalent of the Christian God), had given her the power to determine where the souls of the living should dwell after death.

To the Slavic cultures, Death is simply a woman in white, who carries the souls of the living to Vela, a world of smoky mist, darkness, and cold.

To the Christians, Death is not given a name but is described as an intelligent being. Despite some cultural differences, the overall explanation of Death as an entity is quite universal. A dark winged being, pale, cloaked in darkness and is associated with blue, violet and black.

When Death manifests Itself to us, as rare as it may be, the experience can severely alter one's life for the better or, the worse (usually for, the worse). No matter the person, no matter what they believe, whether they are a Medium or a staunch skeptic, they will know when they are in the presence of Death. Almost everyone can identify the symptoms of Its presence. A feeling of vertigo, hearing voices, smelling the distinct odor of death. However, the manifestation can be different from time to time. Death could just be a cloud of smoke, to a full personification manifestation.

Now, I would like to turn our attention to the Medium in more detail. What I have discovered after several years of practice, and of course, patience, is that I am connected to the Realm of Death through what I can only describe as an “umbilical cord.” This umbilical cord is what keeps my physical body attached to the Realm of Life, while my spiritual body explores the Realm of Death.

There is a very specific method that I have created to help induce my ability to enter the Realm of Death. This method may not work for every Medium, but it is what I have found most helpful in activating my talent. To begin this process, lay down on your back on a flat surface, with your legs straight and your arms loose at your sides. Breath steadily, in a rhythmic fashion to enter into a state of relaxation and mental clarity. When you feel your body has gone numb, and that your mind is clear begin to picture the colors blue and violet in your mind's eye. Swirl them, mix the colors together and focus your energy on your physical eyes. You may fail at first, but as you practice this method, and persist with patience, you will soon induce clairvoyance (clear seeing) and clairaudience (clear hearing).

Please do be aware that everything you do and hear while traversing the Realm of Death can have an effect on you in the Realm of Life. Is it dangerous? Yes. Very. Undoubtedly. Absolutely. You never know what you will experience every time you enter the Realm of Death. Even I have noticed some changes in my day to day routines in the Realm of Life, such as my emotions. It has come to my attention that I am much more hostile to those whom I call friends and even more so toward my rivals. Despite this, I continue to enter the preternatural world to discover all that I can of death; to master the secrets of what happens to us at the very end of our life.

Do remember, that everything you see in the Realm of Death can see you, too. You are not immune to the monsters that lurk on the other side. They can and will harm you if given a chance (or worse). So do not let them.




This story is protected by International Copyright Law, by the author, all rights reserved. If found posted anywhere other than with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.

Copyright © 2018 ― Zachary W Mahnke

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the author, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests, write to the author.

To link to this story from your site - please use the following code:

<a href="">The Chronicles of Claudia Labelle -- Part XXII</a>

Comments (0)

Tell us why

Please tell us why you think this story should be removed.