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Thierry Di Rollo

December 20, 2011

from Chapter 1 of The Three Relics of Orvil Fisher by Thierry Di Rollo (Translated by Michael Shreve)
Thanks to Le Bélial´ for this post.

I. Lucite

The clouds are heavy and black, like this world in agony. I am cold.
Lucite is deserted, eroded by time. The buildings surround me in gloomy, crumbling rows. I cannot lose a second. My next dead are waiting for me. And if they do not know it yet, I have to get ready to receive them at the start of their pitiful journey into nothingness. I teach them how to fly.
There is nobody on the street. Not even a ghost embedded in the shadows of the fissured walls. Everything is falling down: the lives, the deaths on hold, the black air of this late afternoon. The cracked tar of the sidewalks.
I walk. Wherever I go, I find human misery. My hand tightens on the grubby handle of my briefcase. My whole reason for living locked up in a beige and ochre rectangle. I am still not hungry—it will only come with the frozen corpses that I am about to sow. As usual.
That is my job.
I spotted it two weeks back. It is still here. Anyway a building does not move, even if I sometimes wished it would. That would cheer me up, something unusual, the brief period of illusion; for nothing. So, it had not budged an inch. And no one will ever set off. Everybody is waiting in the darkness of the nascent evening, certainly hoping for me to come. Desiring, perhaps.
Men survive in the ruins of a city that was called Lucite in less dark times. That was before the cold, before the white snows from the North. Today the buildings are gutted, gaping onto the dust of a room occupied by entire families—the apartments are open. Passers-by (if there still were any) would see them wasting their lives away in the glacial wind, sitting on the brink of the sheer drop of their own floor; and they would notice their pitiful smiles. Misery rots teeth and souls. Today the buildings are guardians of stagnant water reserves. Water only good for scouring the rusted metal but that the inhabitants would not give up for anything in the world. Today Lucite is nothing like itself. Because it has become the reflection of a shadow.
Today I, too, exist. Dressed in my double-skin coat, my hands protected by gloves, I am meeting him whom I have coddled for two weeks now.
The night will soon weigh upon the street and upon all the buildings of the poor alongside it. And life itself. So that Death can take flight.
Everyday is a good day to die.
Someone once said.

I enter the empty hall. Nobody sees me. I look at the abandoned place blanketed in black, almost sticky dust. In front of me the unhinged door of an old, unused elevator is open. Habit. There are always the stairs. Ten floors to haunt with my briefcase in hand before reaching the top. Illegible inscriptions cover the walls. Shadows overrun the world and my free will. Who am I, ultimately? A useless angel come out of an old Hell? Or only myself?
One. I had a happy childhood. My mother always told me a story at bedtime. My father used to smile at me, even at night, with his three remaining teeth when he came back from his grueling job—sweeping a street twenty times in one day before some big shot European politician passed by. Lucite used to sparkle.
Two. I made love to a few women like everyone. I have forgotten them all. I did not save one.
Three. My father liked to doze off before dinner. My mother cooked in silence. Chloe waited for me in the street at the foot of my building.
Four. I started to love them later. For their icy contact and their reassuring weight in the palms of my hands.
Five. Chloe mastered fallatio pretty well. My mother was killed on the eve of my nineteenth birthday. Of exhaustion. That is what my father chose to believe.
Six. For a long time I thought I was good for nothing. Nubila sucked male genitals like nobody else. My father joined my mother the day of my twenty-third birthday.
Seven. Nothing bothers me. Everything is for the best. My body does not fail me. My arm remains sound.
Eight, nine. I have forgotten them all. I will not save one.
Ten. I look up: the trapdoor to the roof of the building is already open.
I come out into the cold air of the evening looming over the city. My target is on a gray line to a south that is absolutely blind. Another building. Full of still living dead.
Yes, it is true. I began to love them later. Too bad a Royster cannot perform fellatio like the dark, brown-haired Nubila used to do on me.
I kneel down now. Unlock my briefcase and open the cover. It is resting there, calm. It could even wait an eternity, still as dazzling and sure. I put a support butt on it—to stabilize the shot—and a scope.
Too bad a weapon is only this.
So, I cast an eye over Lucite coated in persistent gloom. A few flickering lights outline yellow rectangles scattered over the sooty walls. The timid glimmer of my building also emerges out of the darkness. Inevitably.
It is because it is becoming too easy that I cannot go on like this.

I hear a hydro-car cross the street that separates my hideout from all those moving targets. Its engine sputters for no reason. It even seems to slow down and then slowly speeds up again. I do not know, deep down, if it existed only in my mind at the exact moment when I nudge the butt up against my shoulder. I am lying down on the cold cement. Perhaps my dream car has driven off. The street is soothingly empty again. On the other side of my universe, beyond the road that the night is soon going to reduce to a bottomless pit, the puppets toss around their formless shadows.
Nobody is watching for me. The water guardians on the outskirts only care about their polluted tanks; they cannot imagine that I would come this far. Sometimes in the accurate eye of my scope, they are tangible, human in their shapes and gestures. Usually they are blurred behind the dirty, moth-eaten curtains.
There is a fat woman. I see her clearly. Her whole life is entrenched within the four walls of her ground floor apartment. She lifts her arm a little, seems to sigh, and then tucks a long streak of red hair behind her right ear. And I shoot.

Thierry Di Rollo

October 7, 2011

Prologue to Bankgreen by Thierry Di Rollo (translated by Michael Shreve)
Thanks to Thierry di Rollo and Olivier Girard at Le Bélial´ for this post.

It is born in the gray nebula. In the burning heart of the blue clusters it springs forth, crosses the vast, dark mists and charts its course between the stars that spangle the pitch black of the universe. The forces curve all of space, bend it indefinitely. Perhaps they are right. Here, nothing is added to Time nor taken away; the vibrating matter of red giants irradiates the void, expands it beyond measure.
It travels at the speed of 186,000 miles per second; it is immortal. It skates over the mighty cold of asteroid fields, bounces over the darkness of dead planets, believes in nothing but itself. It is everything; it is no longer nothing.
The photon drifts, invincible. It knows but very little about this living, stupidly motionless matter. And yet it crosses solar systems in lively singularities. They represent barely discernable markers, ghostly on the infinite background of hollow worlds.
The universe is tedium, eternally restarting; the photon learned this at birth. And it carries on, sure of itself, because it partly created the inexplicable; these round, frozen balls floating in the void; these unbearably white stars; these dark chasms inhaling and compressing everything; these nebulae from where it, the little Cartesian diver of immaterial light, had been expelled. This unnamable summa, insane. Abiding and alone.
Time is so long that it becomes profoundly still. The photon pursues its beaded path, visits twin suns around which stumps of bare stars gravitate. It ignores the glowing meteorites of old worlds and finally reaches the outlying regions of a galaxy like all the others.
The void of space then falls into a little order. The photon flies over frozen corpses, hopelessly glacial, skirts around a ringed, purple sphere and leaves behind the gelatinous mass of a giant, bloated with gas. It ricochets off belt dust, ochers itself in its transient flight as a blazing ball and plummets onto the blue and white planet. Which is like no other.
It descends, enters a wet, humid atmosphere. Below it extends a continent encircled by an indigo ocean. There is some green and brown scattered over the sunken lands. The photon keeps getting closer. Several lakes pit the valley with odd blotches. The valleys inevitably become more distinct. And trees tower up, innumerable.
The particle dives into the undergrowth, breaks through the half-light with millions of others; the opaline ray they form plots a straight line for it to follow right into the mouth of the reptile.
The huge animal—gray tail a pendulum along the axis of its body, powerful, immeasurable rear feet, forelimbs almost atrophied —keeps its eyes open. The ray of sunlight stains the upper jaw with a bleary lozenge; the photon rushes up and down the white beam with amazing speed, goes back to the top of the undergrowth and returns to bleach the skin of the great predator. Leaves again. Returns. Inside its own eternity of light.
The reptile moves its body just a little. The patch of sun is shifted to the lower jaw. For the first time the animal blinks its little eyes and snorts. In its line of vision a trihorn grazes its clumsy mass, face mounted on a bony collar. It turns its back to the predator on the edge of the undergrowth. It did not see it, did not even smell it because it is upwind.
The ray, its path obstructed until now by the reptile’s head, suddenly strikes the ground. The predator rushes upon the trihorn, unleashing a dreadful howl. The prey rears up in pain, groans, tries to escape from the pincer teeth around its neck. It will never happen.
The photon has already bounced off the puddle of clear water close by the high grass, climbs out of the undergrowth thanks to another, denser ray, and rises, rises, indefinitely. Life and death are strangers to it and it does not care. It is everything; it is certainly no longer nothing.
The blue planet moves away now. Cloud trails sprinkle the ocean under the thin, creamy veil of the atmosphere. The photon soon finds the icy cold of space again, feeds on this young sun that has, perhaps, attracted it here; it regains strength, continues beyond the void, all the way over the fringe of stars.
It is fragilely unchanging.
One blind region after another made of dust and stellar winds; light years added to light years. Two supernovae explode on the photon’s dark path. Two or three eternities pass.
Clusters bloom in shapeless sprays; other planets suddenly reappear, turning around a sober sun. The photon ignores them, continues in its own parallax, since it chooses what to observe. Soon the mists of Okar drift between the numb worlds, reminding it of the first nebulae, those gigantic ashen swellings that preceded the birth of the speck of light.
Time, however, breaks up, comes together, sticks fast again, stretches on forever; the light no longer deflects. Then a new sun bends space around it. A dark purple sphere accompanies its revolutions; calm, slow. Much more massive than the old blue planet that already exists no more.
And this in turn gets closer. Inevitably.
The photon bursts through the clouds in a season called here the Awakening, rockets over GreatWater, the ocean, chooses the little blue figure huddled up on a rock close to the shore. To strike its diaphanous right wing.
Everything is idle, cadenced by the lazy waves of GreatWater. And the speck of light will go no farther. The blue being feds on it like millions of others to survive the brief trauma of hatching and gain some strength.
The small Rune who was just born is called Lyve. She snorts under the world’s blazing sun of this world, which they call mauve and black, spreads her wings and flaps them a little to dry.
Lyve was born in the ocean. And she smiles, thankful, at her surroundings. She knows instinctively that this planet will someday be worthy of her and of all the Runes. And maybe of all the others, too.
Maybe.
Bankgreen is vast.


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