by Beauchamp Art
For Samael, Time was the bloodstream in which he was the cancer, flowing down arteries and up veins, he was the contagion who devoured every ounce of life that he could encapsulate. He was the deviation in the growth of healthy tissue that would cause chaos on the body’s tapestry of pendulous rhythms and clockwork compression of cartilaginous compartments, rendering each breath ever more brutal, each step heavier, each moment stretched to its agonising extreme.
He grew opulent disrupting the functional fluidity of that which all must pass, second by second, transgressing from the first sight of newly opened eyes to the final closing of their lids, entombing empty sockets evermore.
His malevolence took many forms, just as that rouge cell may form misplaced mattered about the inners of an unsuspecting individual; a sliver of liver by the heart, or muscle stretched over brain stem, so as to reap the greatest and gluttonous harvest of havoc. His grasp extended from limb to limb, from the farther fingertips of a future fathoms from now, to the twisted and gnarled toes, worn ragged and foul by a history of hot coals stumbled across and glass shards the grass on which one would wander like a meadow.
His grip cease sense from the once brilliant mind of rational cause and effect, creating complex partial seizures, manifesting as paradoxes, impossible to navigate, and transformed order into an ever expanding oasis of insanity; making feet dance in demented delirium, faced stroked by paralysing passage of impossibly intricate contradictions.
How any body, even that of grandfather clock, may be wretched into contorted agony by the slightest undulation in its internal logic, and such confused look may be etched onto the face of the old man of Time if he sees before him that which he knows must lay in the long shadows stretching in the past; how narcotic can this nostalgia be if the hand reaches for one, but strikes midnight of another day.
His venom was the ink of an unwritten order, already acted up by those it would command. His ruin ravaged the rational, he spoiled all stories by tearing their tales apart and loosely stitching them back together; taking pages from a comedy, and turning them tragic.
His singular purpose was to consume, and to do so without pause, nor hesitate as to the consequence that would inevitably be undone by further devouring devastation. He was to seduce every coy mistress with wry grin, and revel in their invariable downfall, returning again and again to watch his accusation push them from the greatest height to which he could carry them.
He compelled burden upon all those that would mercy to carry it, inflicting himself as a knife cast forth, flying with unceasing momentum and an unending capacity to carry out violence, and revel in the rapturous cries such death blows would invariable conclude, only to twist it in its flight, turning its trajectory towards all tempted to marvel at the fury of his wake. None would take a moments pleasure from the punishment he would dispense, for the pain of one would be reflected on the blade thrust forth, refracting its action as a prism, colouring all a solemn sanguine.
There are naysayers who propose he is a myth, that such blind vengeance is unbefitting a just world, that their must be order, or logic, or fate, and their predestination was set, by a power perhaps beyond man’s foolish comprehension, whether in the form of a deity or principals of causality that would make all foreseeable events part of a plot extending infinitely in either direction, incapable of deviation, so that none could place themselves outside of the will of Time.
One moment would be followed by another, formulated by the one that came before it as much as the one that would come immediately after, and should one be able to navigate this without descending into madness at the total unfamiliarity of such movement, then one could see all that has and will ever be in their fixed places; see their own rise and demise and the darkness before each dawn echo with steady regularity, pulsing through Time. Thus, to those who propose such fixity, any who stepped in the past or future would have already done so, or would be unable to prevent themselves from acting out their role.
To them, free will was as relevant as the experience of time at the the ultimate velocity. It was possible to perceive one’s actions as a product of the unique decision making capabilities of a solipsistic sentience in solitude at any individual moment, so that for that person they would present themselves as having acted of their own volition, so would be responsible for their actions, consequences, and the decision making process that enabled them to reach their conclusion, informed only by what had come before, and what they could infer about a potential future, without actually envisaging it in its entirety.
As, for this mortal, though their eyes could see forward, thought could only extend backwards, behind the eyes, rolled back in their skull, and should they see what was to come with total clarity, the understanding of their own presence would be so warped by this new knowledge, that they would negate their previously established linear view of how they interact with their world, proceeding only in one direction, only ever able to see the other.
Such a radical shift in the experiencing of phenomena as seeing outside of Time would allow would surely be instantaneously fatal, for they would see their birth collide with their death, would feel both, and all between at once. Such overwhelming stimulation would go beyond the cognitive capacity of any sane individual, and the collapse of his perception of Time around him would crush him from within, for such a concentration of history into the half-blinking eye would blind and bind him to the fate he saw before him at the moment he observed it.
When near death, it often has been said that an experience similar to this has taken place, that one who touches the void but does not fall in may gather around him the entirety of his past, but this is simply delirium, To do so would create such a gravity of sensation that a singularity of the senses would push them passed what little barrier of rationality the placed around themselves in order to partake in the logic of a linear life.
However, for Samael, as one not condemned to look in a singular direction at any one moment, such limitation did not face him. He could see Time both from within, as blood and bone and ageing body, and from without, as the withered old man that he was. He was not born at any set moment, so any sense of inevitability or death born no relevance to his peculiar existence, but bore a curiosity for those seemingly trapped within the body of Time, and thought how interesting it would be to free them, and see if any could comprehend, and join him in his maleficent meddling. Thus, he revelled in delving into the realms of the supposedly rational, and would dare to show them truth eternal, and omnipresent perspective across the expanse of their own life.
For a great deal of those to whom he presented himself, they would raise a brow with some curiosity, tempted for a second, splitting their mind as to whether such knowledge would bring them any joy beyond that which would await them through the passing of their life, or if they would see only a path of misery laid out before them, so turning them bitter, only to enact their own disgraceful fate. But they who pondered for too long would loose their opportunity, and be spared the poisonous gift Samael could give them.
But, there were those whose greed for knowledge would overwhelm them, and the vanity of the proposal would incite them to forego any apprehension – to see themselves play out their lives as a narcissistic pantomime was enticing enough for the foolhardy. This, Sameal would ensnare, turning the cells of their bodies against them, letting his sinful, carcinogenic clutches grip them, turning them to face the mirror into which they would plummet; to see all that once was them and that they would never be. In that infinite perspective, they would writhe, contorting into the vortex of paradox that had been opened from within them.
He enjoyed plucking the pulse of Time, seeing that life emanate outwards in vivacious effervescence. He would see the old man weep with no scorn, only pity in his eyes, he himself confused by the phantom of Samael and all his doing; his clear tears mingling with the vermillion tides, ebbing from him. But Time himself had no begin, so as Samael, he could not die, only be bled and leech upon eternally, always punctured and draining, but never emptying, so plentiful was the life on which Samael suckled.
Though he was not entirely selfish in his seeming sadism, his offer of omnipotence was sincere, and he wanted only to see if any could gaze upon all as he did. As for any isolated from kind like himself, he was acutely alone.
There had been one, long into the past of mortal men, one of their earliest in fact, who had almost seen the light of eternity and not been consumed by its sublime impossibility, but she too had diminished, becoming only shadow far from memory. For the wife of first had proclaimed subservience as beneath her, and longed to know and do all, and call herself Lilith no longer, but Liberty.
So Samael proposed to her, singing the sweet song of limitless liberation, to open her eyelids to endless potential, to be his equal, not some servant of a self-righteous one or slave to a serpent’s fork-tongued suggestion. For he saw in her a glimmer of himself, and so, in his own vanity understood her as beautiful. The desire to be one, individual, unique as any moment, whether seen once or a thousand times, was tremendous, but to share in this was greater. To look upon Time and all his works, his magnificence and misfortune, was a gift unequal, but to do so as a lone wanderer, beyond the reach of another, was a cruel a fate as any he had presented to others, causing their demise.
So Samael said to Lilith that which he knew, all that was and is and will be, speaking so quickly that his words were the wind, and she was caught in the hush of this hurricane. But she could not hear, for so much did he speak that nothing could be understood, it became noise, so great and growing ever louder that she feared should would deafen, and so not hear the final verse of unity, much as those meek men much later were blinded by the terrible illumination of infinity, so the sound passing though Samael’s lips would soon rend Lilith a mortal blow.
Her mouth opened, she called to him for silence, or she would collapse and be ground to dust by the storm of the voice of the void. But in the calamitous cacophony, she could not be heard, and in her muteness, her life began to fail. At the sight of this, Samael ceased, and took her up, clasping his hands about her ears, to blot out the enshrouding darkness of the reverberating verse he had spewed fourth, unaware of its foul effects.
Too late was he? He knew not the fear of his death, for such was beyond the realm of his understanding, but at that instant, he grew terrified of that which his passion had wrought upon this other with whom he wish to share his one gift. Then, he knew sorrow, and sympathy, and pity. But Lilith had slipped from the body of Time, as the first of his blood spilt by Samael.
And so he sought to undo his lot, to spare Lilith from himself. But though he did not flow as others in Time, and could be beyond the grasp of age as the consequence for so many moments passing alongside him, he could not undo his own actions, he could not seal the wound, only prick ever more. He could not heal that which he had done unto Time, nor prevent himself from causing the death of Lilith by his word. The only scars that would be shown were carried by Samael, and those were hidden beneath his form, and could not be seen by even him.
For over and over he saw himself a tyrant, his voice death, his word venom, and so became he who undoes the lives of others, torturing Time for his cruelty in preventing him from the possibility of redemption.
So he searches, to find another who cries for liberty as loud as she, and in his wake is ruin.