It was all coming to an end, which was a surprise to absolutely none present. All things, both good and ill, ended eventually, only this was occurring far sooner than any of the ancient writings prophesied. But the deities of the various so-called pagan religions refused to go quietly into that final good night, so they dispatched their chosen ones, entities imbued with long-forgotten magicks which were run-off energies that still lingered from the Big Bang, to meet the challenge of halting the all-consuming maelstrom. Alas and alack, it was to no avail, for one by one, these champions were crushed beneath the heel of inevitable death, until there was but one lone defender.
She was born Hannah of Cahokia, but her messianic name was, Gelysa Tinelan, and she fought bravely but was seriously outmatched, and when it appeared as if she would succumb to time’s tempest, Fate’s harbinger actually rose into the air, not unlike a human phoenix, playing chords of entropy that increased in intensity, calling the souls of the fallen chosen champions back from the dead in the form of a ShadowsReich, and together they engulfed and nullified the chronal apocalypse, at least for the present.
Her task accomplished, Fate gently folded Gelysa within a patch of void borrowed from beyond the edge of the expanding universe, and placed its champion in a state of suspended animation until the next apocalypse rose its destructive head.
I am among the few ragtag wandering survivors of Earth and the question I hate being asked the most is, “How did you lose your planet?” because we lost it in the most embarrassing way possible. My homeworld was stolen from the human race via social media. At this point, I would have to explain to extraterrestrials what TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter were, and regardless of whether the alien I was speaking to had a mouth or not, I would get laughed at.
The beings, known as DAC, or the Doublyxian Aelonide Collective, were infants when they first approached Earth. Widely known as a pest control race, they were assigned the task of ridding the world of its inhabitants with significantly less destruction than a planetary war would bring. Studying all the various cultures, they assumed a form as close as they could manage to human, mastered our etiquette, and took to social media platforms, becoming bioluminescent influencers who created a series of challenges, which got progressively harder to perform and resulted in a staggering number of accidental deaths.
Not everyone was so easily influenced but we who remained were so few in number that our every rebellion attempt ended in failure. Eventually, we were captured and to our surprise were treated quite civilly. The DACs were quick to point out that they had committed no act of aggression upon the planet’s inhabitants and were not responsible for any of the human deaths. As they put it, “Earthlings had foolishly acted in a manner contrary to continued existence.”
“But we are not without compassion,” a spokesman for The Collective said. “You are invited to remain here on this world that was previously your home, living a life of what you would consider being luxury as our pampered pets.” An offer which outraged me to no end, but apparently I was in the minority. Most of the survivors accepted the terms of their servitude while I and the rest were given provisions, placed aboard a spaceship, and launched in the direction of the nearest star.
Now, we travel the spaceways in search of a planet where we can become the next wave of influencers and perhaps win a new home for ourselves in the same way ours was stolen from us.
There comes a time in every life where a persona goes as far as it can go, meaning atrophication and death are not far behind. But Kaidance refused to let that be the end of her story. Just as a snake sheds its skin in the process of growth, she cast off all the things that made her who she was, abandoning an existence that was no longer large enough to accommodate her new and transformative life energy. Her new persona was a tabula rasa, a blank slate on which she would write for herself a better destiny and a new life for this new year.
To those loyal few who take the time to read my daily scribblings, I just wanted to say, Thank you! Warm wishes for you to have a promising and fulfilling New Year!
Bernadette, having been warned well in advance about Bryce’s uncanny and innate ability to ensnare members of any gender in his web of seduction, girded her loins just before the interview. She attempted to train her eyes on her list of questions and the point on his face just between his eyes, softening her focus as she addressed him directly. But the truth of the matter was she wanted to look. She hadn’t believed that this diminutive and frankly quite ordinary man had any sort of charisma, let alone the power to beguile even the weakest of minds.
There was only one rule in being granted the interview, Do not look him directly in the eye, and in less than a minute she had broken that rule, gazing into the most exhilarating green eyes in existence. His plain face became an immaculate work of art that ran through every aspect of her mind. She was instantly and utterly consumed by fantasies of kissing his lips that seemed so tender, pink and inviting, of running her fingers through the obsidian silk of his hair, of caressing his pearlescent alabaster skin, of letting him inside her, not physically, that would come later. She knew he wanted access to the core of her being. He wanted to absorb her very soul and she was happy to let him.
Luckily my favorite table was open at the bistro I frequented in Alphabet City, the one by the window where the midday sun filtered through shelves of antique colored milk bottles, mason jars, and assorted glassware.
I scanned through the menu feigning interest in all the food options available for some unknown reason though I knew what I was going to order because my order hadn’t changed in over three years. The food here wasn’t really great but it was one of the few places in the city that had a natural ambiance that suited my temperament.
I felt a presence looming over me that smelled of Christmas—actually, the smell was of apples and cinnamon, which always reminded me of Christmas—so I placed my order by rote without looking up from the menu, keeping up the pretense of struggling with the choices of so many delectable options which was silly but perhaps I wanted the staff to recognize how much I liked the place.
“Um, that sounds delicious,” a voice said in a register higher than I was accustomed to in the bistro, a woman’s voice. “But I don’t actually work here.”
I looked up and was nearly blinded by a rosy-cheeked, platinum blonde woman bundled in the whitest fur coat in existence—hopefully not a real fur coat because that would be cruel—topped with a fur hat.
“Is anyone sitting here?” she pointed at the empty chair across the table from me.
I answered, “No…” as I glanced around at all the vacant tables situated throughout the eatery and I was about to bring this to her attention when she daintily and skillfully seated herself.
“Hi, my name is Mary, Mary Christmas,” she beamed a smile and proffered her white-mittened hand to shake. “You have a kind face so you may call me Mary or Your Royal Majesty Queen-Empress of the Known Universe, absolutely your choice but under no circumstances are you to refer to me as Merry as in Merry Christmas. I grew up being teased by that and I’m not having anymore of it.”
I didn’t answer because I was too busy processing what was happening which she took an entirely different way, most likely because I hadn’t completed the handshake ritual.
“Oh, you’re one of those, are you?” she sighed, slipping the mitten off her hand and rummaging through a white handbag produced from a fold in her coat almost if by magic.
“One of those?”
“A non-believer. A person who has to be shown instead of accepting things at face value,” she said as she pulled something out of her purse and handed it to me. “Here, proof.” It was her driver’s license and I’ll be damned if it didn’t list her name as Mary Christmas.
“Mary, I wasn’t doubting your name, strange as it may be, no offense…”
“It’s just that, you know…”
“Come on, you have to admit it’s a bit unusual for an absolute stranger to sit at your table uninvited.”
“Oh, but you did invite me.”
“Well, not you verbally, but your loneliness called out to me. I’m sensitive to things of that nature, people’s loneliness and all that.”
“I appear lonely to you?”
“Most definitely. No offense.”
“None taken, I guess.”
“And well, it’s Christmas time and no one should feel lonely on Christmas.”
“Oh, I get it,” I blushed against my will and was suddenly unable to keep eye contact with her. “Um, I’m flattered, I guess but this really isn’t my sort of thing. I don’t pay for…”
“Wait a minute, you think I’m a…”
“I-I am so sorry! It’s just beautiful women don’t make it a habit of approaching me and…”
“Let me stop you right there. I will allow the infraction because you called me beautiful and before you misread anything else into me sitting at your table, if you and I become anything it will simply be friends, not friends with benefits or any of this other modern-day nonsense. I’m far too old-fashioned for that. And yes, even as a friend I still expect you to be gentleman enough to open doors for me as well as pull out my chair when we dine, thank you very much.”
“And quit acting like this is weird,” Mary said. “Tis the season and I have no gift to bring other than to say, I see you. This has grown to be an unintentional world where people are acknowledged more on the internet than in real life, so I intend to change that, right here, right now, starting with you by asking you a simple question.”
“And what question would that be?”
“How are you doing?” Mary asked, looking me in the eye and giving me her full attention and I was about to respond with the automatic faux “Fine,” but there was something in her expression that made me feel that she was interested in hearing my honest response, so I told her.
I told her how I thought I was at the end of my rope. As an older gentleman who was closer to the end of the race than the beginning, I felt absolutely lost. My life was empty. I had felt this way before but then I wore a younger man’s clothes and was far more resilient, able to pick myself up by the bootstraps and rebuild my life but the change was always temporary and things crumbled and I had to begin again. The problem was I didn’t think I had the strength or wherewithal to start over again. I had lost all interest in the things I was once passionate about and all motivation to find something new was gone.
“Sometimes,” Mary reached her hand across the table and held mine. “We just need to focus on things beyond our circumstances to maintain our sense of peace and allow our senses to lead us to our true path.”
“Like you did by sitting at my table?”
Mary smiled and nodded. “Something like that.”
Now, I wasn’t one to believe in Christmas miracles but this bizarre woman, bless her heart, offered to be a knot at the end of my rope, transforming her from a random stranger to a catalyst of joy. And as the conversation continued, we discussed making a greater impact on society by acknowledging strangers and becoming a source of compassion for those in need and in turn challenging them to make the world a better place, filled with upturned smiling faces, happy to make contact with a living being instead of blue-lit zombies scouring their phones for acceptance and approval.
I never gave much credence to the idea of living a life of service as I equated it to religion and I was not a spiritual man by any stretch of the imagination but there was no denying how constantly amazed I was that a spontaneous conversation or a meaningful smile were so rare that they could literally be the highlight of someone’s day. Now, my newfound purpose in life had become making these rare moments of love between complete strangers the norm.
Thank you, Mary Christmas, for starting a revolution.
If what they say is true, that idle hands are the devil’s playground, then the same must be true about idle ideas in the mind of a filmmaker. This project came about as a result of idle chit chat with a group of friends as we were pounding down sacks full of White Castle murder burgers in a two-tone ’67 Chevy Impala after a night of heavy partying. Never come up with a nonsensical premise and dare me to turn it into a movie. Never.
The Tale of The Maconheiro:
Preview clip starring Steph Van Vlack, Pedro Rezende, Charlotte Grant, Julia Giolzetti, and Rhyan Scorpio-Rhys. Written & Directed by Rhyan Scorpio-Rhys. Copyright 2008-2016 Of Our Hue Filmworks. All Rights Reserved.
Deborah and Verity meeting:
Preview clip starring Monica Hammond and Charlotte Grant. Written & Directed by Rhyan Scorpio-Rhys. Copyright 2008-2016 Of Our Hue Filmworks. All Rights Reserved.
Preview clip starring Monica Hammond, Daniel Petsche, Elizabeth Sawyer and Chris Van Kirk. Written & Directed by Rhyan Scorpio-Rhys. Copyright 2008-2016 Of Our Hue Filmworks. All Rights Reserved.
This marks my very first serious attempt at writing and directing a short film based on a feature-length screenplay I wrote about diversity within the comic book industry named, “Spotting Black.” It’s a little clunky and long-winded, but it’s mine, a project completed and one less item on my bucket list.
Part 1 – The Sitdown – In this segment, it’s the start of the Tri-State Comic Convention and publisher Mark Brown enters his hotel room to find the most unusual submission he’s ever received.:
Part 2 – The Rejection – After Daryl receives a less than enthusiastic response to his submission and previously published work… things get heated:
Part 3 – Harsh Realities – Tired of all the rhetoric, Mark is determined to school Daryl about the realities regarding the comic book industry as it relates to people of color:
Part 4 – The Admission – it’s all been said and done and there’s nothing left but for Daryl to come clean about his unorthodox submission:
Starring Lamont Copeland, Buddy Woodson, and Reena Dutt. Written & Directed by Rhyan Scorpio-Rhys. Copyright 2001-2020 Of Our Hue Filmworks. All Rights Reserved.
I’m on a serious nostalgia trip at the moment, looking back on past projects (because, let’s face it, the past should not be forgotten) and this graphic novel was actually created as a birthday gift for my girlfriend at the time and printed on newsprint, meaning to resemble a modern day penny dreadful.
Synopsis: Set in a future one step ahead and to the left of our own, Polymer Doll Isabeau tells the story of the mysterious and amnestic Izzy, the sole survivor of the Theologos Catastrophe that wiped out the entire population of Brooklyn, New York, four years ago. An accident caused by Rowe Scientific. As events build to similar disaster, Izzy, with the help of her friends, reporter Sydney Dorset and Agent Morgan Barksdale, races to discover her true connect with the Polymer Doll Project, the military android application believed to be the cause of the Brooklyn tragedy.
Inspiration comes from the oddest places sometimes and the idea for this graphic novel series came from watching the cheesy Christopher Walken movie, “The Prophecy” which sparked an interest in reading the apocrypha and pseudepigrapha which resulted in me creating “Genaissance: A Parable Scribed by the Shadowside of God”:
Synopsis: The time? One of innocence. The place? A land that no longer exists; the Earth Pre-Flood. It is here that a gentle soul named Enoch, on the 365th year of his life, is lifted up into the Seven Heavens and brought before the unbearable face of God. Elected to be the Scribe of God, Enoch encounters the Archangel Micha-el, who begins relating a fantastic parable. Through Enoch’s mindseye we witness the evolution of God, the creation of Earth, the formation of Heaven, the birth of Lucifer Morningstar, and much, much more.
Visual Assault Omnibus, our premiere title, was a superhero/science fiction anthology series created by myself, which included gallery pages that new and amateur artists could submit to, as well as coloring and scripting contests and featured the following stories:
Nixa! – On Deimos, the smallest Martian moon, there exists a three-component masterpiece society, consisting of the controlling Deiphovner, subservient Lax’chaetaal, and mysterious Oss’fuite races. For reasons yet unknown to her, Nixa, the nigh-invulnerable metal-skinned Oss’fuite, leads the Lax’chaetaal in a revolt against the Deiphovner. The Oss’fuite are forced to choose sides and Nixa finds herself in battle against one-time ally, Mesq Klute. When it becomes apparent that Nixa may very well die in battle, she is teleported away against her will by friend Ari Grice, the third and final Oss’fuite. The “blind” teleportation leaves Nixa floating helplessly in Earth’s orbit. Her meteoric descent brings about wanton chaos and destruction on many different levels, as secrets that Nixa is no stranger to Earth are revealed.
Improbable Impact – Somewhere within The Brinke, the Sphere Of Time, lurks an entity some call Euthanasia, who was spawned at the creation of the universe. Euthanasia exists to exercise his whims as he sees fit. One of his fonder pleasures is to create new races that he can convert into loyal worshippers that will obey his every whim, even if the consequence is the destruction of the very fabric of the universe itself! He has discovered ideal followers in a race called The Trachnevid, a star-faring race that plunders planets in Euthanasia’s name. One sole survivor, Dimensioner, whose homeworld was destroyed in Euthanasia’s wake, begins a maddening crusade to build a counter-army to help prevent the fruition of Euthanasia’s twisted schemes and restore the proper balance of the universe.
Maseo, Hero-Killer – A mysterious young female vigilante, known only as Maseo, is accused of killing the national superhero, Paramount. The government wants to reprogram her, the public cries out for her blood, the superhero community demands retribution, and the villain element wants a crack at the person who killed Paramount. No one believes her. No one trusts her. No one except her court-appointed lawyer, Augustus Supall. Living a life on the run, Maseo begins to implement a plan that will reveal the forces behind the chaos that her life has become, while Supall struggles to unearth the truth. This is not your standard fare “vigilante” tale.
Ruehl – Even as a baby, the name Ruehl was a legend. Miracle Baby. Savior. Defender of the weak. Role model. Spokesperson. The ultimate merchandising tool. But suddenly, at the pinnacle of her career, evidence has surfaced that she was responsible for the deaths of nearly 200 people, a charge that she cannot deny. Follow the path of a superstar whose life begins the long, slow spiral straight to hell.
MindSet – When the world is running down…you make the best of what’s still around. And after The FlatFall of ‘94 (Nixa’s impact with Manhattan Island), MindSet is as best as it gets. Six in all, orphans turned guinea pigs, and molded into the finest, deadliest technologically advanced corporate henchmen. But when their mission is to assassinate the current Pope, can even the highest level of their super technology go toe-to-toe with an emissary from the heavens?
Loam, the Intrepid – How true are the rumors that a 400 year old myth, an African golem, whose hands are like anvils and whose eyes can burn the soul, has finally come to New York? One reporter for a sensationalist primetime tv show and his partner will risk their lives and even their sanity to reveal the truth behind the “monster” that preys on evil from the dark recesses of New York’s back alleys.