The Pilgrimage of Kell Grey

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
Kell Grey is a priest at the Church of Bones. He is a masochistic newcomer with something odd about to happen to him that he yet cannot fully explain. Part 1.

Submitted: January 22, 2014

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Submitted: January 22, 2014

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Atop a peak toward the North in an icy tundra, filled with treacherous passages, hidden crags and deadly grottoes, is the Church of Bones. The name immediately illustrates in one’s mind that this is a place of sinister happenings and dark tidings. This is not precisely true. Although the Church of Bones has a somewhat dark and infamous past, it is more than trustworthy as a place of sanctuary and healing. The architecture of this church also strikes one who lays their eye upon it, as a place of necromancy and death. The structure is that of a normal church but painted in jet black with the outside columns made from human skulls and various other bones that contribute to the firm standing of this small chapel. Inside the church is dark, with the odd glimmer of orange spark from flickering candles. The inside columns are too made from human remains but mostly it is wood that is used to hold up the ceiling. There are benches just like any normal church, where those who wish to pray may do so, but the most dazzlingly creepy, morbid part of this dreaded church of human remains, is the altar. The altar is like any normal altar, it is sat at the front, it has two human figures carved from stone holding up either end of the large ivory-made altar. The two humans are women, stripped of their clothing with a weary, fearful expression groping their visages. They are kneeled with their elbows bent in a crooked way holding up the whole weight of the table. They are slaves to the church, bound in stone made to hold the altar. 
The Altar itself consists of macabre decoration. Large animal skulls and remains lie upon the altar like some sort of offering. Above this on the stone wall, standing tall behind the table is a torn, blood red piece of cloth, loosely hugging the wall. Upon the cloth a festering crow stand tall and proud, drenched in black ink, splattered upon the red cloth so artistically. This is the dead altar of Raziel. The founder of the Church of Bones. The proprietor of death and despair. He is the abyss, the epitome of morbidity and sacrilege. 
 
Those who reside in the church and follow the ways of the damned are known as Skeletal Priests. These priests devote their lives to that of the macabre and the way of Raziel. They do not hinder or interfere with the lives of those who do not wish to enter their sacred covenant. They just exist, as patrons of the black void. One such priest, a newcomer in the priesthood, is Kell Grey. A gaunt, depressed looking fellow with as much radiance as a rotten corpse. His eyes were dark and the sockets were bruised with a purple tint. His grey pale skin was tight over his face, severely expressing the bone structure underneath his thin layers of skin. The vessel in which he called his body was just like his face, pale to the point of grey and skeletal. He donned a black robe that fanned out over his feet, making it look like he hovered instead of stood. 
Kell grey was knelt down on the stone steps below the altar, eyes closed, blind to the peculiar structure in front of him. He spoke in an odd foreign language that none of you would understand, not even the most researched scholar would understand the dark utterance he was rhythmically speaking. He was saying: “Oh mighty dreadlord Raziel, on this day I pray to you. I utter these words words so that, in the void, you may recognise me and guide on my life-path.” He quietened to the point of silence, until he suddenly raised his voice in a minor triumph. “Dark father, hear my words (insert prayer here)”
 
Kell finished his prayers and opened his eyes. He found himself in the same bleak place he started. HIs sigh was long and full of despair. He turned and walked backwards out of the church and into the glum, daylight that couldn’t even really be described as light. Kell took a few slow paces towards the edge of the peak and looked down. The fog weighed heavy below creating an opaque sheet of grey that not even a hawk’s eyes could pierce. 
He often wondered what it would be like to throw himself off. He wanted to know what his bones would sound like, cracking and snapping against the jagged rocks below. His bones, he thought, would protrude from his skin, piercing him with such agony that his body would turn into a numb shell, falling like a ragdoll. It was a masochistic thought that Kell often played over and over in his head, just to remind himself of his pitiful existence upon this cursed place. Sometimes he regretted his decision to enter a covenant with the Skeletal Priests. He thought the Church of Bones was an exciting place where he could worship death and sacrifice virgins to his unholy lord. But it wasn’t. It was a place of tranquil silence, that was only broken when the head priest would give a sermon. Kell turned his back on the grey drop below and pushed the suicidal thoughts to the back of his twisted mind. He then went back into the church and prayed so more. He found himself among two other members of the church, both sat on the hardwood prayer benches opposite each other. One of them was a woman. Eleanor Heart. As a child was burnt in a fire that was started by a her father. He intended on burning his wife and Eleanor alive whilst they slept. He succeeded in the death of his wife, burning her alive like a pig being roasted on a spit. His daughter however, slipped away with dreadful burns to her torso, face and arms. She was nicknamed the “ghoul” and was later chased out of town because she scared the children. That is why she now enrobed in black and wears a hood to cover her face. 
The man opposite her on the other side was Warren Henry. A man of considerable wealth and social standing. The Church of Bones was his dirty little secret that he would prefer to keep tucked away in some hidden crevice than have exposed to his wealthy consorts. He was quite plump with a grey balding hair and a plump face. He was a brutal man, a baron of some sort with a wife of the age of fourteen. 
 
Kell took his place at the head of the congregation and bowed his head. This was his fourteenth prayer today. Raziel wasn’t listening, he never did and never will for Kell was just an inferior lapdog. He cut the prayer short and headed for his bed of straw, on the second floor. He passed the door of Archpriest Bartholomew who was muttering insane chants under his, deep, strained breath whilst brooding over his writing desk. Kell walked further along and came to his room. It was nothing to look at. It had a bed, writing desk and a candle stood upon a small stool in the corner. Kell pulled the black robe from his disgustingly skinny body and threw it on the floor. He stood, vulnerable and naked before getting under the thin sheets. He closed his eyes eyes hoping sleep would come soon. 
Sleep came quicker than expected and hit Kell in the face like a large brick, he was out like a light and dreaming within seconds of his head hitting the pathetic excuse for a pillow. He fell into a dream world that he wasn't accustomed to. He didn’t recognise the shapes of this dream and he certainly didn’t feel welcome. He saw nothing but darkness and a dense fog that snagged at his ankles. The world was cold against his naked self, he felt his nipples harden and his skin ripple and tighten with a shudder. The air that came from his mouth, turned into a misty vapour that evaporated into the blackness. He felt a palpitation in his heart and a shiver down his spine, like a million dead fingers were scraping with brittle nails. There was an ominous presence here, a presence that he did not care to meet or speak to. He tried the old trick of pinching oneself to wake. He did not. Panic ran through him and his body tightened, not with this time but with fear, 
“I can smell your fear.” A deep unrelenting voice came from within the black, “It is spilling from you like the blood of a lamb after it has had it’s throat slit.” Slowly from the blackness came an apparition. The apparition walked slowly taunting Kell gulping down the fear he exuded like some sort of vampire. 
Kell saw the words in his head but he couldn’t say them. It was like some sort of brick wall had appeared on his throat forbidding him to speak. “Who- Who…” He stuttered then fear took his mouth and slammed it shut. He could speak no longer. 
“Who am I?” The entity guessed the question Kell wanted to ask. “You should know me. For I know you… Kell.” The entity bared it’s sharp fangs, branding it’s face with a devilish smile. “I. Am. Raziel!” The entity wallowed in self-satisfaction as it moved quickly towards the pathetic Kell. Kell’s eyes widened, he wanted to move away from Raziel but his legs were stuck fast and they wouldn’t allow him to do so. Instead he bowed before the dreadlord himself. Raziel was pleased with this and asked him to stand straight, Kell obeyed and looked deep into the demon’s eyes. They were like black crystals of nothingness. His whole body was shrouded in a black mist that flowed like an open river but was tight around his body. Kell was scared. He didn't expect such a meeting to take place. Was this really a dream or was it something else? Kell had yet to find out.


© Copyright 2019 Thomas Chambers. All rights reserved.

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