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Book: The Face of Satan's Bog
Chapter 21: Smile of the Damned

“Where, in hell’s name, are they!!!”

Lawrence punched the executive hard on his right ear. The executive cowered over his bridge console. “I… I’m not sure yet, my lord. No provisions were made in the design of this ship for internal sensors. It’s difficult for me too…”

Lawrence screamed and punched him again, this time in his lower back. “Are you criticising my design?!”

The executive cringed with pain and arched his spine. “No, my lord.”

“Good. There are various surveillance cameras around the ship. Use those. I want the three academics captured and that Titsy Buttfest girly and her companion vaporised on sight.”

The executive nodded.

Lawrence smacked the executive’s ear one more time for good luck, and then hauled the mummified mass of Mister Blister over to the executive at the navigation console. “When will we reach our destination?”

“We will arrive at the planet Elddem-Ssor in one minute, my lord. The ship will drop out of sub-space in a few seconds.”

“Ha harr! Excellent!” Lawrence yelled, leaping up and down. “Finally I’ll get to test my terror weapon! I’ll become a living legend in the minds of the nefarious and despicable - even more so than I am already!”

The adolescent female computer-collective spoke in a chorus of high-pitched voices. “TRANSIT TO THE PLANET ELDDEM-SSOR COMPLETED. SUB-SPACE PROPULSION SYSTEMS DEACTIVATED.”

The ship seemed to shudder for a second as the transition between dimensions occurred, and then stability returned. “RE-ENTRY TO NORMAL SPACE ACHIEVED.”

The main-view-screen was filled with the blue-green disk of Elddem-Ssor, hung like a lantern of joy within the deathly void of the cosmos.

“Place us in a low stationary orbit above their largest city.” Lawrence said.

The executive at the navigation console examined the mult-coloured data on his screens. “The largest city is in the southern continent on the western side of the main continental shelf. its name is New Southfields.”

Lawrence swung one of Mister Blister’s fists high in the air and slammed it down onto the executive’s head. “Stop babbling erroneous information and do as I order!”

The executive shuddered and fell off out of his seat. He lay on the floor convulsing, blood dribbling from the corner of his mouth.

Lawrence kicked him in the butt. “Get up, you mangy blockhead!”

The executive’s convulsing stopped. And so did his life.

Lawrence stomped hard on his head and buried Mister Blister’s left boot deep into his skull. “Weak-necked son of a hog breeder!” He pulled the boot out and shook off the pieces of skull and brain matter that clung to it. He directed his voice to the ship. “Place this ship in a low stationary orbit above New Southfields immediately!”

A new and higher pitched rumble spread throughout the ship. “SUB-LIGHT THRUSTERS ACTIVATED. LOW STATIONARY ORBIT ABOVE NEW SOUTHFIELDS WILL BE ACHIEVED IN THIRTY SECONDS.”

Lawrence watched the image on the main view-screen. The surface of Elddem-Ssor was now clearly visible. Huge oceans glistened in the sunshine and snow-capped mountains lined the sides of the main continent. The city of New Southfields quickly honed into view between the mountains right on the western coastline, a web-like pattern of roads and freeways spread outwards from its centre. “Yes!” Lawrence shouted, laughing. “Millions and millions of victims to do with as I please!”

The computer-collective corrected him. “THE POPULATION OF NEW SOUTHFIELDS IS LESS THAN 800,000. YOUR PREVIOUS STATEMENT IS INCORRECT.”

Lawrence couldn’t believe what the ship had just said. “How dare you correct me? Next time I’ll tear you apart!”

The ship felt no need to reply.

Lawrence, still fuming with rage, strode over to the executive. “I am about to test the effectiveness of my terror weapon on this insignificant and unsuspecting city. You have until that test is over to find my prisoners. Fail and you will end up like your colleagues. Understand?”

“Yes, my lord.”

“Good.”

Lawrence directed his voice to the ship. “Power up the FACE - the Fierce and foreboding Anger and Contortion Emitter - for immediate use.”

“FACE - FIERCE AND FORBODING ANGER AND CONTORTION EMITTER POWER-UP PROCEDURE ACTIVATED.”

“Ha harr!”


Surby Tone, the most respected movie director in the New Southfields metropolitan area, stood with his hands on his wide woman-like hips and surveyed the scene in front of him. The sun, low over the ocean to his left, was casting deep shades of orange against the domes and spires of downtown New Southfields, only a few kilometres to the north. Behind the skyline, the cloudless sky was a darkening shade of deep blue - perfect.

“OK,” Surby said. “The light is just how I want it. Let’s get this shot done before it goes!”

The small film crew - one cameraman, one sound recordist, and a dopey but stunning actress named Wanda Worth - got to their feet.

Wanda brushed some grass off her long silk skirt and walked to her position to the centre of the roadway in front of the camera. “How do I look, Surby darling?”

The director gave his usual response. “You look ravishing, my dear, as always.”

Wanda giggled like a child.

What a stupid bimbo! Surby though. Still, I’m in for another great night tonight!

The cameraman waved to show that he was ready. The sound recordist nodded.

Surby Tone took his seat in his director’s chair. “Right, let’s quickly run through the scene. The ugly ghost of the recently slaughtered bog fiend has just appeared as a huge apparition above the city. It’s desperate for vengeance on mankind for taking its life and has singled out its first victim. Now Wanda, you are that first victim. All I need you to do is run towards the camera with your arms in the air, screaming. The ghost of the bog fiend will be put into the scene above the city skyline at a later date, so you’ll have to just imagine it for now. Do you understand?”

Wanda smiled sweetly. “Sure, Surby Darling. You know I do!”

“Great. Let’s go for it. Roll camera.”

The cameraman mumbled. “Rolling.”

Surby raised his right hand. “Action!”

Wanda started to stumble towards the camera. She wailed like a pygmy elephant, her arms flailing in the air like a gibbon’s.

“Cut!”

Wanda stopped. “Surby darling?! What’s wrong?”

“That wasn’t quite what I wanted. You sounded as though a pineapple had suddenly been pushed up your butt. The scream I want is terror, not surprise. Let’s try it again.”

“Anything you say, Surby darling.”

Surby waited until Wanda had returned to her starting position. “This time, try looking back occasionally and imagine the evil face of the bog fiend glaring down at you. That should help you feel fear.”

“I can do that.”

“Glad to hear it. OK, roll the camera.”

Once again, the cameraman mumbled. “Rolling.”

“Action!”

Wanda began to stumble towards the camera again. She screamed, this time more convincingly, and as ordered she looked back. Then she stopped.

Surby couldn’t believe it. “Cut!” He got up out of his chair. “What’s wrong?!”

Wanda looked at him. “Don’t get mad with me, Surby darling. I’m having trouble using my imagination. I don’t think it works.”

“Of course it bloody works! Everyone has an imagination!”

Tears appeared in Wanda’s eyes. “I said don’t get mad with me!”

Surby was about to shout when he remembered his plans for Wanda later at his apartment. He couldn’t risk offending her and her not turning up. “I’m sorry my dear. Please forgive me.” He sat back down. “Let’s try it one more time.”

Wanda nodded excitedly. “OK! This time I’ll do it perfectly!”

“I know you will.”

Wanda bounded back to her starting position. Just as she was about to turn there was a huge flash of red light in the dark evening sky above the city. A massive shape - as wide as New Southfields itself - spread across the sky, undulating like water. Wanda’s mouth dropped. The shape quickly formed into a gigantic face with eyes of doom and horns of despondency.

Surby Tone stared in disbelief. As the seconds passed, more and more detail appeared on the face. It seemed to be smiling, but the smile was not a pleasant and friendly smile. It was a smile of the damned - a smile of the purest evil.

Wanda turned. “Hey, Surby darling. My imagination’s working. I can see the bog fiend!”

“That’s not your imagination!”

Wanda turned back and looked at the face in the sky. “That’s a shame. I thought I’d finally got it going.”

Suddenly Surby’s business mind kicked in. He didn’t know what was going on but he was going to exploit it nonetheless. “Quick, let’s shoot the scene now!”

The cameraman looked at the director. “But that face thing is in the…”

“You idiot!” Surby shouted. “That’s exactly what I want! This’ll save me millions of credits on special effects! Roll the camera now!”

The cameraman mumbled. “OK. Rolling.”

Wanda was still staring at the face.

“Wanda!” the director yelled. “Action!”

Wanda turned. “Er… Yeah, OK.”

She began to stumble towards the camera, her arms waving above her head. But she wasn’t screaming.

Surby was about to get up and punch her in the mouth when a blood-curdling roar shuddered the surroundings. The gagantuan face’s mouth was wide open now, and its yellow saliva-coated teeth were bared and sharp. It began to groan like the undead and snap its teeth. The city shook as the deafening sound waves passed over. Wanda was screaming now, and genuinely too.

Surby laughed. This would save him so much money!

Wanda ran up to him and grabbed him. He fell off his director’s chair and they both ended up in a heap in the gutter.

“Save me, Surby darling.” She yelled, pulling a discarded burger carton out of her hair. “Save me.”

He ignored her. “Keep rolling!” he shouted at the cameraman. “Point the camera directly at the face and keep rolling!”

The cameraman did as he was told.

Distant screams of terror could be heard from the city as the streets filled with panic stricken people. The face roared, even louder. It seemed to be growing larger by the second.

Wanda screamed again, and then fainted.

Chaos reigned supreme.

Surby Tone smiled. The thought of saving millions of credits had completely masked any fear that he felt. He had no idea of the terrors behind the face in the sky, but at least his film would stun the world!


Lawrence was delighted. He bounced the body of Mister Blister up and down with glee as he watched the effect of the FACE. The main view-screen showed impressive views of the streets of New Southfields, filled with thousands of terrified people. They were running in and out of buildings in a frenzy of panic and dread.

Lawrence played with some controls, then pressed the button marked ‘Roar’. The buildings shook visibly as the excruciating wave of sound passed through them.

“Ha harr!” he laughed. “They’re frightened beyond globulation! They’ll die of fear then the city will be mine - virtually intact!” Lawrence turned to the one remaining executive and spoke with unnatural calm. “I never thought of that until now. I developed the FACE to terrify entire populations for simple amusement, and to attract bounty hunters so that I could mutilate them. But I can use it to bring entire worlds to their knees, and then take over as their supreme dictator.” He leapt into the air and screamed. “What a revelation!!!” He bounded over to the executive. “My demonstration will last another ten minutes. Find my escaped prisoners before then, or die!”

The executive was sweating profusely with stress. “Yes, my lord.”

“And get that utter fag-face, Chester Bolus, up here this instant. My top men should be on the bridge, not pissing around in the depths of the ship!”

“Yes, my lord.”

Lawrence turned to look at the havoc portrayed on the main view-screen. An unseen tear rolled down his face. He was overwhelmed with joy. Hundreds of major car accidents, dozens of aircraft collisions, people diving into the ocean and leaping off tall buildings - all caused by a push of a button. Remote-control mayhem was an awesome and a highly emotional experience.

Lawrence sniffled, and then blinked to squeeze the excess water from his eyes. He spoke to the ship. “Prepare the vocal interface to the FACE. I wish to speak those pathetic fools in that city.”

The pre-pubescent female computer-collective answered. “FACE - FIERCE AND FORBODING ANGER AND CONTORTION EMITTER VOCAL INTERFACE UNIT ACTIVATING… PLEASE WAIT.”

“I will not wait!”

“VOCAL INTERFACE UNIT REQUIRES THREE MINUTES TO UPLOAD TO THE FACE ARRAY. YOU WILL HAVE TO WAIT.”

Lawrence mumbled vile profanities under his breath.

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