Artists, Writers, Poets, Deviants.
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Odyssey II is the second mass collaboration event to be conceived on deviantART this time under the watchful gaze and guiding hand of none other than Clive Barker - - the master of fantastical narratives. The result will be published next year in digital and traditional book form.
Read about the Project and participate in the creative event of the new millennium (before it ends, of course, with the apocalypse). Here is the current prompt inspired by the latest Odyssey II chapter chosen by Clive.
Prompt for Chapter 4
The invasion like no other is on, and we are witness with players whose unique perspectives and goals open up a world of possibilities. This invasion is viral, like other plagues of our times, but the virus is sentient and Paul battles to free his body not just of a deadly encroaching poison but possession by a growing evolving parasite of unknown origin. Does he presently bear within his own body his “son” – or his cannibalistic assassin? His only ally, a savage young woman named Maya who is ostensibly warring against the secret viral invasion, may be suffering possession, perhaps unknown even to herself. And the possessing intelligence may be the “sister” of the alien being whose spawn now grows inside Paul, a spawn she would for unknown reason seek to destroy (anonymously).
Chapter Four demands plotting and propulsion! Who are these sisters and where do they come from, with one launching a viral invasion against humanity and one, perhaps, fighting her? Is Maya possessed or still in control of her full faculties – just what these are and whom she works for not yet revealed to us. And what of Paul’s untenable mental and physical situation? He occupies that space from which mad seers, monsters and heroes are born (and sacrificed). The wildest elements have been whipped into our Storytellers’ cauldron. Now let’s crank our thinking brains to turbo-puree and cook up something palatable to the most discerning of connoisseurs of mystery and imagination.
Odyssey II is on
SUBMIT Chapter 4 Literature →
SUBMIT Chapter 3 Artwork →
Recent Odyssey II Submissions
Drawn Together"a fit! A seizure! There must be some kind of police report!"
"Sir, any such information would be confidential. But there has been no report of anyone having a 'fit' or 'seizure' this morning. Now, please step aside!"
"No, no. I'm sorry." Paul backed away, suddenly aware that the queue behind him was becoming a small, angry crowd. A policeman stood nearby, radio held to his lips. Someone coughed, "Nutter," as he staggered away from the kiosk and up towards the London streets.
He scanned the crowd surging into the station, hoping to see the shock of red hair and the deep brown of the jacket. A hand gripped his left forearm.
"Is he here? Did you find him?" A man, maybe fifty, stared at Paul with pleading, mud-colored eyes. The close-cropped, salt-and-pepper hair and hangdog features sparked Paul's memory: it was the man with the belt. The wo
Odyssey II Submission: Chapter OneCHAPTER ONE: WORLD'S END
God gave us memory so that we might have roses in December. J.M. Barrie
The young redhaired woman was admiring herself in a full-length mirror. The vintage dress she was modeling reflected her fondness for the antique. She still laughed to think of how as a teenager she'd wandered from Victoria Station all the way down to the World's End area of the King's Road, somehow naively thinking that some glittering remnant of a 1960s storefront would magically appear.
A casual observer might have placed her in her late 20s or early 30s, with a sly smile that suggested a rare intelligence bubbling just below the surface. It was there to note or no; most did not and would discover that they'd badly misjudged her abilities. There were countless fresh-faced office boys who, upon attempting to engage her in some local gossip or office smut, found themselves galloping away with their tails (or other parts) between
ConvergencePaul hid behind the darkness of his eyelids summoning the courage and strength to open them. The pain in his head was clearing but he watched the room spin as the churning in his stomach made him retch.
"Good to see you awake."
The voice snapped Paul from his delirium and he pushed himself to sitting. A frightfully well-dressed man sat in a large leather chair near the foot of the bed.
"Who the fuck are you? Paul demanded.
"I'm Doctor Bailey." he said.
Paul fought back the urge to vomit as he scratched at the IV needle taped to his arm.
"Where am I? How long have I been here?"
"It's rather...complicated." Bailey replied. "You collapsed on the pavement in front of your hotel. You were taken to hospital and we've been looking after you."
Paul didn't like the doctor's hesitation. There was a malevolence in Bailey's voice that kept Paul's heart and mind racing.
"A little over a fortnight."
Paul was on the verge of panic. He wanted to scream - to RUN<
Patient/ Doctor ConfidentialityPaul leaned against the bathroom wall as the room seemed to tilt. He tried to climb out of the shower, gripping frantically at the shower curtain but fell to the floor. Chyme bubbled up in the back of his throat as his body was racked with deep convulsions. A deep pain seared through his leg. He fought to keep his eyes focused on something. Anything.
There was a scream. And the outline of a black, patent-leather heel.
When Paul awoke he was in a brightly lit room, a tube running out of the crook in his arm. There was a faint muttering of voices, pattering feet, and a beeping noise. The pain in his leg had subsided to a dull ache. He glanced around the room. The tube in is his arm was connected to a drip bag hanging on a metal rack; it was filled with a cloudy-white liquid.
He was about to reach up and take the bag down to inspect it when some rustling made him halt. Behind a bleach white curtain he could see another cot, and that someone was stirring. There came a low guttural sound. T
Odyssey II Chapter 2He stopped in front of the hotel. The man could feel that his chosen was up there. Yes, that human who had so kindly lain him on his lap and allowed him to give him The Gift. He would spread it and be a perfect catalyst, this man.
The plan was proceeding perfectly. Everything would run smoothly, so long as the human survived this change that he was undergoing. Of course, he had no doubt the human would. As he'd gone through the seizure that came with passing on The Gift, the red-haired man had sensed the human's strength. He knew this would work.
However... If they decided to intervene...
No they were completely unaware.
Better get moving anyway, he thought.
Without hesitation, the red-headed man advanced towards the building, his heart beating rapidly as he crossed the threshold into the lobby. He could hear his chosen human's heart beating rapidly. His slight smile turned to a grin, and his eyes flashed a bright silver. Yes, this was it.
Chapter 3 - Mommy...The bed was a hard and uncomfortable addition to his nausea. The Proxitol sat in his system like the flu. He wished he had the flu. When he was a kid the flu meant undivided attention from his mother. She would sing and comfort him until he was all better.
His hand went to his hip above the warm rash. It seemed hard to believe he's harboring alien life, let alone sentient alien life. He rubbed it. Was this thing sentient?
"H...hello?" He said, pausing for an answer. "Can you hear me? Are you alive? Do you understand my words?" There was still no answer.
Maybe it was asleep, or better yet, whoever these people are got it wrong. This isn't an alien, it's just some rash from the hotel sheets. He let his hand fall down by his side, and tried to ignore everything. He tried to sit up. The alien moved. For half a second he was sure he imagined it, but then it moved again.
Paul jumped off the bed. The alien thing moved! What if it wanted to eat him? He felt like jumping out of his skin and lea
Symbiote, if You Please"Paul? This is your name?"
He looked at Maya first, but no, the voice couldn't have come from her. This one was much deeper, a man's he thought. He craned his neck, looking to put a body to this disembodied speaker.
"Paul, listen to me. Do not respond to me, or they may take action against us. If they knew I was speaking to you, they would not hesitate to kill us both on the spot."
Paul held his breath. It couldn't be. Was the voice coming from inside his head?
The voice went on. "I understand your confusion but there isn't much time. These people, the ones who have captured us, they will not allow you to leave here. They mean to keep you here Paul, so that they can study me."
This was too much. Paul could hardly piece together what the lady, Maya, had said. A sentient organism had taken up residence inside him? And now it was talking to h
Free at LastLewis felt a lot better now that he'd released it. Having a symbiotic parasite growing inside of you is not the best feeling in the world.
It hadn't taken Maya long to locate him. She said she hadn't been off the trail of the creature inside him since she'd first encountered it three years ago. It was her job to fight off the invasion that was taking place right under our noses and inside our bodies.
It was a big circle, someone puked on him then he puked on someone else.
But the guy he puked on in the tube wouldn't be releasing the poison to anyone else. Maya had handpicked him while they were waiting for the train. 'See if you can get it on him,' she told him. 'He'll make a good host and will carry the strain to term so I can finally stop all this running around and chasing one person after another.' Then she handed him the ipecac.
They weren't even sure what the thing was. They said that it started out in a lab somewhere. Terrorists with an expensive chemistry set had combined DNA f