Chapter 1: Hipster Abraxas
Hipster Abraxas pulled on his skinny jeans and thought: I am the creator and destroyer of my own world. Then he got a latte.
After leaving the coffee shop, he was once again struck by the beauty all around him in his world. He turned up his eyeInThePlaceOfAnIPod.
Hipster Abraxas came upon Philip scribbling his gospel. “Band playing tonight?” he asked.
“Yah, at the Other Aeon,” said Philip.
Abraxas said, “I’ll be there.”
“You’ll be the only one”, said Philip.
“I know,” said Abraxas. “I love your band, Heretical Gospel Music. Will Thomas and the Egyptians be there?”
“You never know,” said Philip.
Hipster Abraxas pulled out his eyeInThePlaceOfAnEye phone, and sent a snapchat to @ThomasHeretic, asking “Will you be at the Other Aeon tonight?” with a pic of his bright red comb. He got a pic back showing @ThomasHeretic holding a stone upside down, saying “I’ll be there.” Abraxas pumped his fist. “Now I know!” he said.
That night, at the Other Aeon, Hipster Abraxas drank a Heavenly Hops Hefewizen and listened to the melodies of HGM.
They were the opening band for Thomas and the Egyptians, who had a new album out, Make the Female Male and Vice Versa.
Sophia walked up to Abraxas, all tipsy and wobbly. “Buy me a drink?” she asked. He said, “Why won’t Demi do it? He brought you.”
“He’s over there with the Rulers,” She said. “And I’m thirsty.” She ran his hand over his flannel, stretching up to the comb.
Hipster Abraxas glanced over, and saw Demi and the Rulers, all their jackets and emblems and names written on the back. Demi stared back His eyes were like lasers, burning into Hipster Abraxas’ soul, barbed hooks preparing to drag him to perdition.
“I think I’ll pass,” said Abraxas, removing Sophia’s hand. “Not ready to be the gateway of the gods. I just wanna hear the band.”
“You’re not drinking your beer,” she commented.
“My soul is afflicted for the Sons of Men,” said Abraxas. That band had crashed their van earlier in the evening.
Sophia sat and chatted with HA, and slowly they got more and more drunk, Thomas came down after his set, and said “I found all of them intoxicated; I found none of them thirsty. And here I was going to buy a round.” Abraxas accepted a shot of Goldschlager anyway.
Abraxas, Philip, Thomas, & Sophia were all having a great time. “I wish you’d come back with the band,” said Thomas to Sophia.
Sophia looked down. “I can’t. Demi…has me wrapped up and very busy. It’s hard to get away.”
Hipster Abraxas looked again at Demi & the rulers; Sheep-Face, Donkey-Face, Hyena-Face, Seven-Head, Dragon-Head, Ape-Face, and Burn-Face. They were starting to get restless. They kept glancing over at Sophia and Demi was getting redder in the face. Finally, the big gorilla that was Demi came over to the group. He put his meaty hand around Sophia, and pulled her away.
Demi wrapped her in his muscled arms, and dangled a bracelet. She giggled and took it, putting it on her wrist. And like that, they were gone. Hipster Abraxas felt a great sadness with her passing.
Abraxas, Philip, and Thomas sat and drank some more. PBR and HHH. “I’m surprised he didn’t create trouble,” commented Thomas.
“I’m here,” said Abraxas. “I’m the creator and destroyer of my own world. He can’t do crap here.”
“You’re a good man to know,” said Philip.
“But we can’t be around you all the time,” said Thomas. “We occasionally have to look away from your blazing spectacle.”
Abraxas scratched his neck feathers. “Yeah. I should go to bed.” And with that, he left The Other Aeon & went into the world.
Abraxas sent a text to Magdalene as he walked home: “Hey, wanna come check out my etchings? *eyebrow*”
The reply came “Cant. Gotta thing.”
Abraxas: How long?
Magdalene: Dont know the hour
Abraxas: where at?
Magdalene: The Kingdom
Abraxas: Got a new number?
Abraxas: Be there in 5.
Magdalene: You won’t recognize me.
Magdalene: But you see what is hidden.
Abraxas: And I’ll proclaim it.
Magdalene: Now, that’d be telling.
Abraxas: c u soon
Abraxas entered the Kingdom, paid his two drink minimum, & sat at a table. The dancer on stage finished, & the lights dimmed. The Voice said “And now, let’s all clap our hands and welcome: The Magdalene!” Catcalls abounded.
The lights came up. A figure, wrapped in a dark cloak stood on the stage, its face completely obscured by a hood .Instead of music, a deep, husky female voice with a hint of an Persian accent, spoke: “Seven are the powers of wrath.”
The cloak flew back, showing a woman, with dark hair, dusky skin. She was bound, tied all around, able to move hands & feet. The lights changed color, flashing as she moved. Music began. The voice continued, “The first form is Darkness.” The lights blacked out, and a white veil which had bound her fluttered to the ground, revealing more skin.
Her dark hair swung as the lights came up, and she lifted her hands under her breasts, presenting. “The second, is desire.” She tore a red veil from the bindings, whirled it between her legs, then around the pole, as she swung. The music increased.
She released the red veil, and stumbled as the voice said, “The third is Ignorance.” As she recovered her footing a pink veil came free. She looked at it in confusion, then ran around the stage, trailing the pink. She jumped up, swung around the pole, and the veil artfully tangled in her legs. She swung around once, twice.
Her legs held her to the pole, and she leaned out, trailing a pink veil. The music increased in both tempo and volume. She let the veil fly free, and the voice said “The fourth is the excitement of death.” Her legs released the pole.
She hit the stage with a loud impact. She came up, and took a pale green veil, wiped her forehead. And rushed the edge of the stage, holding the veil, showing the audience the blood stains upon it. She had an energetic smile on her face.
By now, there was less veil, more skin. She reached up, and pulled away a pale yellow veil. It revealed her stomach.
Only two veils remained bound around her, as she took the yellow veil in hand, and danced around the pole again. “The fifth power, is the Kingdom, of the Flesh.” said the voice. She swung up the pole, climbing and rotating. She soared. The yellow veil fluttered to the stage. The two remaining veils, strategically placed, remained firmly afixed.
The crowd, normally throwing dollars and encouraging the dancers, was silent. The flashing lights made her skin seem first alabaster, then dusky. The voice spoke.
As it spoke, she came off the pole, & advanced on the audience, as if on a runway, one foot crossing in front of the other. One step per word, her eyes welcoming, beckoning, threatening. Her abdomen moved in sweet, sensuous invitation. “The sixth power is the foolish wisdom of the flesh.” said the voice, taking on a bedroom cast to match her movements. The deep purple veil across her chest gave way as her hands slid down her torso, pulling it away, revealing her breasts.
She spun away, the last veil hiding her nether regions. Once more she leapt up the pole, spun around, and leaned back. Her breasts gave the crowd the show they were seeking, yet still they did not react with cheers, only baited anticipation.
She landed upon the stage. Only a red veil remained. Slowly, she advanced to the edge. She wiggled her fingers in the veil.
“And the seventh power?” said the Voice. The dancer smiled, invitation, and a secret knowing. “The seventh power of wrath?”
“The Seventh power is WRATHFUL WISDOM!” The Voice Roared. The Dancer snarled. The Lights Came up and blinded the audience.
When the lights cleared, the red ribbon was tied to the pole. The dancer was gone.
Silence reigned in the club after her act. The lights went down, figures could be seen scurrying on the stage, collecting the discarded veils.
A dark haired woman in a light white robe came and plopped next to Abraxas. “Another stellar set, Magdalene.” he said.
“It pays the bills,” she said. “But it’s frustrating. None of them have ears to hear. It’s like talking to dead people.”
Her voice was melodic, the wind of the desert at sunset. Abraxas could have listened to her do bill collecting.
“Are you done any time soon?” HA asked.
“I’d planned another set, but when I heard you were coming, I switched the order. I think after that, Peter may want me to go home.” She glanced at him sideways, a smirk on her face. “He doesn’t like art.”
“Speak of the Devil, here he comes,” said Abraxas. Peter came storming up, his two lieutenants in tow.
“What the hell was that?” he bellowed. Andrew and Levi stood with him, Andrew as hot as he was, Levi placating.
Magdalene got up and in his face. “It was art, you philistine. Art.”
“I don’t believe this!” he continued to bellow. “We’re not here for Art, we’re here to entertain people, and get their money! What’s wrong with you?”
“If He was here, He’d understand!” she yelled.
“Well, He’s not. I’m in charge. You’re not getting back up on stage tonight.”
She gathered her bag and took Abraxas’ arm. “Let’s leave the Kingdom of the Flesh, my fine feathered friend.”
Abraxas clucked at Peter as he left.
Once outside The Kingdom, Magdalene clutched at Abraxas, holding him close. “I miss Him so much.”
“He was a visionary. I certainly learned a lot from Him.” Abraxas lit a cigarette, and gave her a puff.
She twined her fingers in his comb, after taking a drag. “Let’s go back to your place. I could use some firey spectacle.”
Abraxas looked down at her along his beak. “You sure? No one could do Divine Union like He could.”
She ruffled his feathers. Her voice was laden with promise. “You’re here. He’s not. And if he comes back, we’ll all…”
“…figure it out.” he finished for her.
He finished the cigarette, ground it under his Brogue. He looked up at the stars, and then submitted to communion.
“Your Place, or mine?”
Acknowledgements: Thank you Lainie and Jonathan Stewart for your patronage!