The Coil

Avatar Author: Jim Stitzel I dabble a little in a lot of things -- writing, webcomics, gaming, photography, web design, music, and more. I'm a full-time code-wrangler and a part-time farmer with 40 acres, a lot of animals, and far, far too much to do. Read Bio

The encampment is little more than a desiccated husk. What remains of the few tents still standing are tatters of canvas flapping from poles bent and twisted by some cataclysmic event. Much of the ground here has been blasted into red glass and slag, but there are pockets that remain sandy, that still shift in the gale that howls through this canyon.

It is one of these pockets that hides the original purpose of this encampment. The wind blasts, the sand shifts, and the edges of a device emerge. It is a delicate thing, fragile, and yet somehow it remains intact. It looks not so much like a coil — though there are sections of glass tubing that do, indeed, coil — as a series of tubes, bottles, and decanters connected in series. It looks like the chemistry set of a mad scientist.

Dark residue clings tenaciously to the insides of several bottles.

And in one bottle, a minute Ember still burns, consuming nothing and yet, still, it pulses gently.

The wind and sands shift, and the device disappears once more.

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Comments (5 so far!)

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  1. Avatar Reaver19

    Goddamn Jim! I know I’ve seen this movie before but I can’t put my finger on it. Either way this was a ruly vivid telling of your post-apocalypse world. I really enjoy this series and I keep playing “In this twilight” by NIN. It’s off the Year Zero album, check it out and tell me you don’t get it too. Patiently awaiting more from this story, keep it up sir.

  2. Avatar Reaver19

    I meant to say TRULY not ruly.

  3. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    Well, A) I’m glad you’re enjoying this series. Frankly, I’m a little surprised how much mileage I’ve been able to get out of this series, considering it’s a dead world. I never expected this when I wrote "The Clockwork Mannequin. B) I’ll be curious to hear what memory this series touches on once you figure it out. I don’t imagine there’s ever been a movie about a world quite like this one.

  4. Avatar Princess Binky Lemontwist (LoA)

    Nightmare residue, I presume. :)

  5. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    Bingo. :)

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