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The rhythmical knocking continued, and even though I was inclined, as I mentioned above, to spend the afternoon writing, I couldn't resist it any longer. I got up, buttoned my dark green vest, which I prefer to leave unbuttoned while I sit and work, so as it wouldn't squeeze my belly and cause unnecessary heartburn, then went over to the door and opened it. Outside stood a gentleman whom, at first, due to his dark complexion, I thought to be an African, but a closer look showed me that my unknown and uncalled guest isn't an inhabitant of that ancient and underexplored continent. Africans, you see, have a complexion which, depending of their home region, varies from light-brown, almost sickly yellow complexion of the denizens of Sahara, to the dark purple, ebony-like tones of the natives from the heart of the continent. My guest, however, had a complexion so completely black, so black that his lineaments, even his main physiognomy features, like say nose, eyes or ears, often disappeared in it, creating an illusion that his head, and I can vouch that it is not the truth, is a mere black oval, a neat crack in the veil of reality through which we could see quite a sight, if we had the time to adjust our pupils to the complete lack of light. His strange physiognomy aside, his clothes weren't an everyday sight on the streets of Hamburg, city in which I was born, which I loved and in which I liked to reside. Far be it that he, like the aforementioned Africans, had a haphazardly thrown pieces of white-man's clothing on him, chosen mostly due to their tackiness and impropriety, but his outward appearance was quite prominent even without it. In spite of the late November, which in Hamburg can be quite cold and rainy, my visitor sported but an Italian-styled light linen suit, draped in a motley colored fabric of Mongolian, Russian or some other eastern origin. Over his shoulder he carried a white and blue seaman's bag, made from a waterproof fabric, while on his had he wore a tiny fur cap, made from golden fur, which he very politely took of with his deerskin-gloved hand as soon as I opened the door and found myself confused by the sight of him. That courteous movement, the nice arc of the fur cap, accompanied by a slight bow, told me that before me is not some vagrant or a vagabond, but a being of fine upbringing and civilized manners. When he addressed me in excellent German, although with no recognizable accent, I decided - intrigued, I admit, with this strange appearance - to invite him in, where I offered him cognac and a cigar.


  - I'm incredibly grateful for Your generosity, mister Mann - said the young man, for, his age was never in dispute, he barely had half the winters that I had over my back. - And don't be afraid, I won't take too much of your time! I just dropped by seeing that You, as a man in the know, practically a native, could help me with a small matter.


  Flattered by his words, I replied I would do anything within my powers to help him, even though I believed he could get equal help, if not better, from any other inhabitant of Hamburg.


  - You are modest, and it goes to your honor - replied my visitor, whom I previously found out called himself La Bete Noire. I must admit I flinched the first time I heard the name, thinking that some personal and secret nemesis of mine had arrived at my doorstep, but the polite young man soon dissuaded me, telling me a short history of his family, adding a few anecdotes concerning his name. - I am, however, certain that you are the man I am looking for. You see, I am looking for an apartment.


  I assumed my guest was searching for a place to rent out a room, and that someone must have misdirected him my way, for I do not let out rooms, seeing how I need peace that a man with tenants never quite has, for my writing. I said those same words to him, politely and with regret. My guest smiled and explained that my assumptions were incorrect. Namely, he was looking for a specific apartment, named Barbara Celarent Darii.


  - She was just called Barbara when I saw her last - my visitor added. - And just a dressing room. Now I hear she grew up to be an apartment, added two names next to hers, and that she resides in Hamburg. seeing how she's an old  and dear friend of mine, it would be most impolite of me not to drop by her, while passing through Hamburg.


  I heartily agreed with the young man on that. Seeing how several months ago I did indeed meet the lady, I could praise her new premises and location with a view of the harbor far and wide. La Bete Noire was quite happy to hear those news, and was particularly delighted to hear that miss Barbara intends to add a balcony as well, and that she had already chosen her next name: Ferio!


  - That is marvelous - cheered the young man. - Ferio! Simply divine!


  I quickly gave him the instructions to the shortest way to reach miss Barbara, and asked him to give her my best regards, which he happily promised. I stood up to escort him to the door, when he, through the door I left slightly ajar, spotted the manuscript I have been working on. He showed great interest in it, and I had to explain to him that it was a zeitroman that I have been writing, in interludes, for nearly a dozen years, and which I hope to finish soon. La Bete Noire wished me every luck, said he looked forward to reading the novel, once it's done, and made a joke about how we would finish novels more easily if we were to start with the ending, so all previous chapters, written next, would sound quite different if we knew where they were leading, and how the story ends. I laughed at that remark,and said that it would most definitely be so, but that I don't intend to spend twelve more years writing the same novel backwards. At most, I added, I can promise I will ask the reader to, after reading it, read the book again, which should have a similar effect. My guest agreed, and added one of those sentences so appropriate to youth.


  - If anyone was to write a novel about me - he said, - I would like it if he were to start with the ending.


  After that, we parted. La Bete Noire went off to search for miss Barbara, and I returned  to my novel, which I did indeed finish soon. I later often and gladly recalled the encounter with my strange guest, and sometimes even thought about putting him in some novel with a reversed timeline. For that, however, and for many other things, I never found the time, just like I never managed to return to my guest his small golden fur hat that he left under the armchair in which he sat during his visit.




(Thomas Mann, an excerpt from an unpublished essay, 194?)




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In the evening, after a whole day's march, during which none of them had said a single word, they once again stepped out into a clearing; first old Waldir, who cut their path through the thicket with a sure hand, then Orlando Camargo, and finally Mokkader. Once upon the clearing, Waldir looked up towards the treetops and the light, that was fading fast, and Orlando, tired, turned around in search of a tree stump to sit on. Just as he found an appropriate log, when Mokkader yelled to him:


  - Don't sit down, if you wish to get up!


  - What do you mean by that? - snapped Orlando. Fatigue and hunger have made him irritable. He felt sorry for himself, and expected the same from the others. - Why shouldn't I sit?


  - Because I'm not gonna carry you, if some critter were to take a bite out of you! - sneered Mokkader. Orlando has had it with Mokkader's superior sneers and, in spite of fatigue, he felt his muscles tense. He was ready to shut Mokkader's mouth with his fists, when Waldir's angry shout stopped him.


  - Caralho! - he heard the old man swear. - Puta merda!


  Orlando flew over the clearing in three big leaps, stood next to Waldir and only then did he notice a corpse spread out in the bushes. The animals have eaten its intestines, and gnawed on its face, but the silver-hemmed vest, left hand clutching the knife that still had Orlando's blood on it, and the dirty golden hair gave no room for doubt to the identity of the poor wretch.


  - Alemão! - breathed Orlando in disgust and took a step back.


  - Alemão! - repeated Waldir. From his mouth, the name sounded like a curse. He kicked the body with his foot, and from the mouth that gaped in the middle of the disfigured face crawled out a venomous snake, thick as a thumb, and quickly disappeared in the thicket.


  - Well, well - Mokkader approached them from behind and patronizingly patted Orlando on the back. - You've done a marvelous job of leading us in a circle! Alemão couldn't have done it better himself!


  Orlando turned around angrily, and pushed Mokkader with both of his palms straight into his chest. Mokkader stumbled and fell on his back, but a moment later, he was back on his feet, smiling, dancing around like a boxer, taunting Orlando to attack him again. Orlando didn't need him telling it twice. He charged at Mokkader, but missed. Mokkader, however, hit him straight in the face with his fist, and Orlando dropped down like a log.


  Orlando wasn't the first nor the last to underestimate Mokkader's strength, or the firmness of his fists. Mokkader's body had no meat nor bones, only rubber and air, but his fists knocked people down fast and thoroughly, like a hook from some black champion. The more Mokkader hit Orlando, the madder he got, faster to get up, and his attacks became more savage. As dusk slowly turned into night, soon they didn't even fistfight, they grabbed each other and rolled around on the ground, moaning, swearing and snarling.


  In the meantime, Waldir wrapped some rag around a branch, soaked it with the last sip of alcohol from his flask, and lit it with a match. In the exact same moment when the rag took flame, there was a moan, and then a loud hissing of air. Waldir jumped over to the fighters, lit them with his improvised torch, and then backed away. Mokkader was lying on the ground, jerkily losing air from a large gash under his ribs, and above him stood Orlando Carmago, shaking as though he just awoke from a serious drunkenness, in his right fist still holding the knife he stole from Alemão's dead hand.


  Waldir jumped to him and, filled with righteous wrath, smacked Orlando across his cheek. Orlando moaned in surprise, threw the knife in the grass and put both palms on his cheeks that burned with pain and shame. He couldn't take his eyes away from the fallen, now completely limp Mokkader.


  - What's the matter with you? - the old man yelled at him. - Do you want to kill us all? C'mon, then, hit me!


  With those words, Waldir threw away the torch in the grass, and ripped apart his shirt with both hands, exposing his skinny ribs to Orlando's confused gaze. Orlando stared at him for a long moment, then burst in tears.


  - I didn't mean to! - he moaned. - He challenged me!


  - The world's full of challenges - replied Waldir, buttoning his shirt with his shaking fingers. - Are you going to kill the entire world as well?


  - He's not dead - Orlando said suddenly. - It's Mokkader! You just need to pump him up, and he'll be alive again!


  - Pump him up, yes! - Waldir shook his head. - But where? Do you see a pump, do you see a city?


  Orlando wasn't listening to him anymore. He raised Mokkader's lifeless body - deflated like this it weighed barely a dozen pounds or so - and threw it over his shoulders.


  - I'll find one! - he yelled and disappeared into the darkness.


  All Waldir could do is to let out another curse, and then run after Orlando, skipping over roots, waving his useless torch and tripping over the creepers.


  They ran like that for the entire night and day: Orlando rushing heedlessly in front, with Mokkader's flapping body wrapped around his shoulders, and Waldir behind them, cutting the bushes with his machete, and the air with his swearing. Orlando, mad from guilt, didn't want to stop, and the old man didn't dare to fall behind, to lose Orlando from his sight. After twenty four hours of that feverish race, they suddenly came to a river, and Orlando was already hip-deep in the murky water before he realized they were saved, that the deadly green labyrinth was behind them now. He danced, and then he screamed, laughed and cried until, totally exhausted, he didn't fall asleep on the shore. Waldir covered him with Mokkader, and willed himself to light a fire and stay awake until he managed to call up a raft of some parrot hunter who he fortunately knew already.


  Three days later, when Waldir woke up, he found out that Orlando was long gone, ran off, and that Mokkader was on the road to recovery. He found Mokkader on the veranda of the doctor's house, in a hanging fishnet bed. Mokkader offered him some rum and soda, which Waldir accepted, and then leaned on the veranda wall.


  - You knew it, didn't you? - he asked after a while. - You knew that only guilt could carry Orlando further than wrath. You saved us all.


  The old man looked at Mokkader, and Mokkader looked back at him. Then Mokkader laughed, and drank a long sip of warm rum and soda.


  - Nah - he said. - I just didn't feel like walking anymore!




(an excerpt from Jack London's novel: "In the Jungles of Matto Grossa", first published in New York, 1933.)



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During the entire winter, the Devil moaned, while his wife rubbed ram-grease onto his bruises, then in the spring he took his axe and went back into the world to look for the Gypsy. He found him, like before, sitting in front of his house, puffing his pipe, so the Devil kneeled two steps in front of him, put the axe beside him, and stared at the Gypsy. And the Gypsy, didn't look at him, didn't not look at him, he just sat there, and puffed.


   Finally, the Tailed One said, baring his doglike teeth: - Well, which one of us will talk first?


   - Well, I guess I can - shrugged the Gypsy. The Devil nodded happily, because he wanted so badly not to talk first. You see, he figured that every time he talked first, the Gypsy would somehow outsmart him, so his wife had to heal his wound all the winter long. But, now that the Gypsy talked first, now all will be like the Devil wanted.


   - You still owe me one more favor - said the Devil


   - That I do - replied the Gypsy


   - I came to collect it - said the Black One and arose, so he could look at the Gypsy from above, thus intimidating him.


   - So you have - replied the Gypsy, unabated, struck his pipe twice on his peasant shoes, throwing out the embers, put the pipe in his belt, and then rose himself. - Let's go, then!


   So the Gypsy went towards the west, and the Devil was quite confused. He thought this time he would be ready for every Gypsy's trick, that he wouldn't let the Gypsy fool him with words, nor with action, but he wasn't prepared for the Gypsy obeying him like that. Satan hurriedly got hold of his axe, and then ran after the Gypsy and, since the Gypsy didn't go in a rush, but one foot at a time, he soon managed to get to him.


   - Hold on, Gypsy! - said the Tailed One. - Where are you going?


   - I'm taking you to one of the pillars, like we agreed - calmly replied the Gypsy. The Devil looked into his eyes, to see if he was lying, but in Gypsy's dark eyes he couldn't see anything but his own reflection. So he gave up, and asked:


   - Is there a long way to that pillar?


   - Well, it's not a short way - said the Gypsy. - Three days, at least.


   And do they walked on for three days, and slept for three nights. That is, the Gypsy slept, and the Devil kept vigil, so that the Gypsy doesn't escape from him. On the third day they came to an oak, so tall that ten heroes, if they climbed on each other's shoulders, wouldn't top it. The Devil was happy, thinking they arrived, so he grabbed his axe, and asked the Gypsy:


   - Is this the pillar?


   - No - replied the Gypsy. - There's a long way to it yet.


   - Well, how long? - asked the Devil. - Is it a long way?


   - Well, it's not a short way - said the Gypsy. - Three days, at least.


   So they went on, for three more days, and slept for three more nights. That is, the Gypsy slept again, an the devil kept vigil, so he wouldn't get away from him. Tired and with bloodshot eyes, the Devil spotted a Lombardi poplar on the third day, so tall, that it's treetop was lost in the clouds.


   - That must be the pillar! - he yelled, and grabbed his axe, ready to cut it down, when the Gypsy stopped him.


   - This isn't the pillar we're looking for, either - he said. - There's a long way more to it.


   - Well, how much longer? - cried the tired Devil.


   - If it was easy to find, everyone would be finding it - replied the Gypsy. - We have to walk three more days at least.


   - The tailed one became dejected, but hauled the axe on his shoulder, and starts dragging his feet after the Gypsy. Three more days they went, and three more nights the Gypsy slept, and the Devil stood awake over him, talking to himself. On the third day they came to a great lake, and they heard a terrible roaring.


   - What is it? What is it? - the Devil was terrified, who thought that the noise was coming from his head, since he didn't sleep.


   - That's the pillar singing! - replied Mujo, took out his pipe and with his chibouk he pointed across the lake, towards the place where a waterfall was falling into the lake from heavenly heights, sparkling like it was entirely made from diamonds.


   - The Pillar! The Pillar! - shouted the devil and ran into the lake to cross it, swim over it, so he could reach the Pillar. Finally he came to the waterfall, and started hitting it feverishly with his axe, because Satan's greatest dream, it is well known, is to someday find one of the pillars upon which rest all the peace and happiness of this world, and cut it down. He kept hitting on it until nightfall, but he couldn't harm the waterfall. Still the pillar sang, undisturbed, still the diamonds flashed, only this time on the moonlight. Somewhere around morning, the Devil started suspecting something, so he turned around towards the Gypsy, who was all along sitting on the edge of the lake, watching the evil cut the waterfall, puffing on his pipe.


   - It won't break down! - complained the Devil to the Gypsy.


   - If it was easy to break down - the Gypsy scolded him over his pipe, - everyone would be breaking it down!


   The Devil scowled, but tired, as he was, he couldn't think straight, so he spat on his hands, and got down on the job, real hard. He cut and he cut, all spring. He cut all summer too, and then the entire autumn as well. The Gypsy would look at him during the day long, puffing on his pipe, and at nights he would sleep. The Devil would have cut the entire winter as well, but when winter came, the lake froze, the waterfall froze, and along with them the Devil too.


   Then the Gypsy stretched, hit his pipe twice on his peasant shoe, stood up, and waved to the Devil.


   - May you live long! - he shouted, and went back home.


   The Devil spent the entire winter under the ice, and had time to think about everything, and he realized that the Gypsy had tricked him once again. In the springtime, when he thawed, he rushed angrily to the Gypsy's house, but the Gypsy wasn't there to be found anymore.


   Ever since that day, the Gypsy is roaming through the world, never stays long at the same place. The Devil is looking for him, sometimes finding the hot embers from the Gypsy's pipe, but never the Gypsy.


   For, if The Gypsy was easy to find, everyone would be finding him.




(an excerpt from a traditional folk tale, "The Gypsy and The Devil", written down between some two wars, near Brod or Travnik.)



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Some objects, people or occurrences we are known to hate totally and unreasonably, without them giving us a valid reason for such a black intolerance. I hate lakes in that very sense. Although I know that in today's day and age many look at them in quite the opposite way, and looking at those calm gray and green waters they find joy that eludes them in the city life, I fail to see nothing other than an overflowing puddle in a lake, an awful empty space of putrid, sick water which had it's sweet liberty of flowing taken away from it.


  That is probably why on that evening I found myself next to the artificial lake in the city park, with a piece of paper in my hands. The paper, on which, earlier that afternoon, I wrote a bad, tortured poem, I folded into a little boat while I was still walking, and I intended to leave it, dead as it were, to sail the dead waters. Let the blackness melt, let the paper moisten, I thought, let the ducks tear it apart, let some accidental vortex bring it down to the bottom, let it see oblivion now, while I'm still here to see it, so I can find at least some compensation in my wasted effort.


  I had nearly descended all the way to the surface of the lake, trouser legs raised, so as not to soak them, when I heard familiar footsteps on the pebbles behind me, and the warm voice of my late father. - What are you playing with, Popol, my boy? - he addressed me with my childhood nickname, and my mad heart almost stopped, and I may have fallen then and there into the shady waters, if I hadn't heard the rustling of a woman's dress underneath my father's sure footsteps. - Penelope, - I turned around and greeted her silently, calling her by her first name as if she were some sort of a harlot, but I didn't do it out of impudence or the lack of respect, but because I did not know any of her other names, and titles didn't suit her no more than a grown woman's jewelry would suit a smiling little girl.


  The illusion was perfect. On the pebbled path above the lake stood my father, exactly the way he looked during our walks, on the days when his duties in the Senate didn't stop him from joining my mother and me, with his pink thumbs stuck in the pockets of his vest, with his thinning white hair which burned with a fiery light in the last minutes of the sunset. He smiled sadly. - Popol, - he said, - comfort isn't a fever that attacks you and comes down on you against your will. Comfort is a seed, like a mustard's, which won't grow if it doesn't find a fertile soil.


  - I know, Penelope, - I replied, and added how I thank her for the effort, but how I'm equally afraid that there is no comfort for me in this World. She didn't say anything, she just stretched out her hand, demanding to see the paper boat. I looked at her extended arm for a moment, the familiar pale pink fingers that belonged to my father, with dear, yellow tobacco stains, and then I gave her the toy which she skillfully unfolded.


  - It's not bad, - she said, after she had read the poem. - But it's not good, either, - I added, though Penelope decided she did not hear my remark. - Why write about a plum tree? - she asked me instead, while her fingers, without looking, returned the ship to its previous shape.


  - And why not? - I responded. - Why, in fact, write at all, when writing is but a false hope in eternity, deceitful quest for sense in nonsense, a failed grinding of the key to our escape? Why write, indeed, and if you do write, why not write about what ever we like, be it a plum tree? - I was surprised myself with the vigor of the words I laid to the defense of a verse I had already condemned, and I saw that my outburst cheered up Penelope as well. Under my father's moustache, her lips were smiling.


  - You're more afraid of Comfort, than you are of pain, Charles, - she said, addressing me by my adult name. - You are used to pain, it has become like an old friend to you. You can beat it, momentarily overcome it with pen and ink, but happiness... with happiness, my dear Charles, you wouldn't know what to do.


  - I am cursed, then, - I said, muttering to myself, while I dropped the paper boat into the tepid water, which became blacker with nightfall. The boat bravely set sail, then ran out of power, so it started spinning and finally stopped beyond my reach. - I am cursed to know only of suffering, only suffering do I recognize, and only suffering do I live!


  - You are blessed, Charles, that you have a gift so that your suffering, among all pains, your pain, hasn't been left without a voice, - I heard Penelope telling me, while I followed the white stain of paper on the dark waters of Leta with my eyes. - Death can come your way, sickness, or war, but...


    - If you mentioned Love as well, and we'd have all the four horsemen of the Apocalypse! - I smiled, and Penelope scolded me. - Mock all you want, Charles, but you know very well that you haven't met an evil that in itself did not contain a blossom of some flower.


  I wanted to reply then with something shrewd and clever,to use swift words to strike under the armor and silence the speech that wouldn't stop  any other way, when something else distracted me: the boat wasn't on the surface of the lake anymore!


  I could have sworn I haven't taken my eyes off of the gentle swaying of its whiteness. Not a single hungry and curios duck hadn't come near it, and, I could swear upon it, there wasn't a single wave to knock it off and sink it. There was just enough light, so it wasn't likely it melted into the shadows. Where did, then, the little boat disappear, how did it beat the murky waters, was it possible that, while I wasn't paying close attention, it found the way that I myself have been seeking for so long?


  - Believe, Charles, - said Penelope.


  - I can't, father, - I replied, and bitter tears started flowing down my cheeks by themselves, unable to stop.




Charles-Paul Baudelaire: The Boat (from OEuvres Complétes, Gallimard, 2002.)



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...the telegram laid crumpled in the corner, next to the barefooted messenger, who brought it on his tanned soles all the way from the north ridge, and presented it to the general with his filthy hands, knowing his destiny even from the moment of departure, for no courier had ever brought unfavorable news to the general, or any news at all, and lived to tell the tale, news that were for the general's ears were for his ears alone, and telegrams that were for his eyes only were for his eyes alone, all other ears, all other eyes were to be stabbed, poured with hot wax, silenced, ignored, forgotten, only the ears of General Suerte could hear how in the total silence of the republic, his heart still beats, now even stronger and faster than ever before, except that one time when it beat so fast that i thought i'd use up all my lifebeats during that blasted quarter of an hour, but i didn't, i caught my breath, gradually, that's when it was beating like this, two or three drumrolls per moment, bad digestion, said the minister of health smugly, so i shot him from the silver pistol, one bullet in his stomach, let him digest, for it is not fair for a smug bastard to outlive a General, and the General was glad to see him die, he instantly felt better, he took deep breaths of the smell of shit that leaked from the Minister's guts, it was sweet for it was someone else's, not like the smell of excrement from this brown peasant who brought news from the north ridge news how la bête noire is approaching, who should feel honored that he was shot with the silver revolver, one of the gleaming pair, he probably has never even seen such beauty in his life, the fortune-teller with the wolf's name once foretold to the General how he will be safe for as long as he carries it, and the golden gun, the silver's twin, you will fire only once, on the last day of your life, i told him, and he choked me to death with the italian scarf he brought to me as a gift, wanted to choke down the truth that even he has a final day, he choked it successfully, for years, and maybe he would have been happy, if only he hadn't came upon the words la bête noire somewhere, he who never read a thing, we were all surprised that he even knew the letters, asked us what it means, and we replied it means nemesis, an opponent we hate or fear, our anti-thesis, he then silenced us all, with a firing squad salute in a sunny noon, worm-infested they buried us in a single pit, for the fragrant green and golden bananas to grow above us, from then on, Suerte dreaded those strange words, are you my la bête noire he asked everyone in the village, kissing them afterwards with the silver revolver, with a single carefully molded kiss in their bowels, it calmed him down to see them wane slowly, for hours at a time, he savored the stench of their shit, that final salute to life by the living, are you my la bête noire he asked, and no matter how we responded, we all received a silver kiss, it made the life easier, we knew, the only people in the world, if there is a world, how we will end up, women and old men, children and soldiers, everyone but him, Suerte was not so fortunate, he didn't know the face of his own death, what does la bête noire, that was coming from the northern ridge, look like, in his nightmares it constantly changed its face and grew outside all measure and sense, so when La Bête Noire, with his terrible black face, finally stepped through the broken down doors of the deserted palace, the general didn't see in him a drifter clad in tatters, but a huge beast, he aimed too high with his last remaining shot, the one from the golden revolver, and from the miss, his heart clenched like an overripe orange, it beat like never before, and he only managed to pant out are you my la bête noire, and i closed his green and tired dusty eyelids amid the sour smell of his excrement and i said we are our own black beasts, my general, we alone devour ourselves, you yourself, and me myself...



(Gérman Garcia Marquez, an excerpt from an abandoned novella LA MUERTE DE LA SUERTE (Death of Luck), circa 1980.)



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and here are the avatars...


what - did you think i was going to leave my baby to rot in the soon-to-be empty old boards?



















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Sorry, but you have posted more images than you are allowed to


shite. I hopew McMahon will still fiddle with the limitations of these boards a bit, it's not like any of us is going to abuse this board any more than we did with the last...








renee.gif - this character is based on one of my friends, Bora...


zhorzh.gif - this is how i picture Luis in my mind ;)





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Glory be, Bete is here with us too!



Lou - i've been meaning to ask you - what did you make of the last episode (and especially the last framing story, La Muerte De La Suerte...)?

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:( Fortunate is the man who hasn't lost his raven. Plus the origin of Zhorzh.


I can't believe there are no current plans to publish this.

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:(  Fortunate is the man who hasn't lost his raven. Plus the origin of Zhorzh.


I can't believe there are no current plans to publish this.



when a friend of mine asked Milan jovanovich, the artist, about the further adventures of Bete, he got this sketch instead of the reply :




the text bubble says "No more adventure"


Bete's depressed, and he started smoking and drinking... :(



i still there are some plans for some kind of sequel to appear in webcomic form, in the not too near a future...

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You and me both, Lou...



i can give you emails of authors, if you'd like, since they could both do with a little praise and appreciation...



plus, you could maybe get a custom sketch from the artist? Just tell them Rogan sent you :)



i know the artist, Milan, would love to hear praise about his artwork, since he doesn't think he's a very good artist himself... :(

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both 4th and 5th will come your way soonish...



why the sudden change of heart? :p



and Toystantine is already making his way towards you, packed in a neat little box...

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and Toystantine is already making his way towards you, packed in a neat little box...


Rock on dude, cheers.


I had a 'read' through the first three issues and thought they looked a little lonely without their brothers.

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Glad to see Bete is back with us over here...I've been recommending it to everyone I know who might conceivably be interested.


That sketch is, indeed, deeply upsetting. Keep us posted on any news of a potential sequel, Rogan.

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i can give you emails of authors, if you'd like, since they could both do with a little praise and appreciation...


That would be great.

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i can give you emails of authors, if you'd like, since they could both do with a little praise and appreciation...


That would be great.



Ditto. I'm always happy to be able to personally thank/commend authors whose work I enjoy.

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Rock on dude, cheers.


I had a 'read' through the first three issues and thought they looked a little lonely without their brothers.



what'd you think of them? How come there's no mention of that in the Comics I read Thread? :p


also - today i bought you the remaining two issues while going to sort my college thingies out (i had exactly the right ammoung of cash - a portent, so i spent my last penny on the buggers)



expect them in a week or so, i'll be sending them tomorrod morning...

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Thought they were pretty good, which is why I asked for the rest of im!


Was going to send you #200 this morning but forgot to bring it into the office, will post in Monday.

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no hurry - i'll read it later tonight anyways (i just d-loaded it)...


just let me know that you've recievee them (and the Toystantine before them.... and when you DO get him, make sure to give us some pictorial evidence... That being said - where's Lou's new hilarious toy photo thread?)

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where's Lou's new hilarious toy photo thread?)


After reading that last one you posted I feel my stuff doesn't stack up. I'm going to have to elevate my game a bit. That and I've been super fuckin' busy. But I'm also planning the silent adventures of Li Mu Bai so stay tuned.

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