Posted by: chartroose | October 31, 2008

The Sandwich Whore

I believe I bit off a bit more than I can chew (har) with this challenge.  Last week, Jack and I decided to try to rewrite a Lovecraft story for Halloween, and here is my feeble attempt.  Rewriting Lovecraft is not easy due to his tendency to go on and on in his descriptions of horrible settings and events before finally coming to the denouement of the story.  The climax (HAR) is almost always well worth the wait, though.  I still enjoy reading Lovecraft, especially during this time of year. 

I started writing this with the intent of doing justice to ol’ Howard Phillips by trying to imitate his style at least a little bit, but by the end I was sick of the entire effort and ended up rushing through the most exciting bits.  I apologize for this in advance.

Without further ado, here is The Sandwich Whore (based on The Dunwich Horror, by H. P. Lovecraft, © 1929).  You can find the full-text of many Lovecraft stories, including The Dunwich Horror here.

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The Sandwich Whore
by chartroose, October 31, 2008

I.

Sandwich is a small mountain village nestled far above the pretentious granola city of Boulder, Colorado.  Hardly anyone visits Sandwich, at least, not deliberately.  Hardly anyone even knows it exists, and those who have stumbled upon Sandwich accidentally are later filled with an inexplicable sense of dread whenever an Arby’s or Subway or other sandwich-related commercial is aired on television.  “Make it a manwich night” is a phrase that sends shivers through even the toughest accidental visitor.

The town was founded in the mid-1800’s by an ignorant clan of Irish miners named Watkins.  They were later joined by a disreputable British family, the Castles, who had been thrown out of practically every American city or village they tried to settle in.  The Castles had started out in Boston and had gradually moved westward with each successive generation until finally ending up in Sandwich, Colorado.

The Watkins and the Castles were a match made in Hell.  When they weren’t fighting, they were breeding, and when they weren’t breeding, they were conducting unspeakable nefarious experiments on the local flora and fauna.  They even experimented on their own offspring when they were in a party mood.  Sometimes, during drunken bashes, the old folks would speak of an unnameable terror that was brought into being by a long-dead resident named William Watkins.  The terror was driven out and locked away in a dungeon somewhere nearby, and, according to local legend, it was patiently waiting to be set free.

Due to inbreeding among and between the two families, each subsequent Sandwich generation became more repulsive than the one preceding it.  By the middle of the 20th century, the two families had created their own race of mentally deranged and physically deformed offspring.  Extra fingers and toes became the norm, especially among the male inhabitants.  Scoliosis was quite common in Sandwich, as were a variety of repugnant skin conditions, including severe suppurative acne.  Every new generation was a little bit dumber and a whole lot uglier than the one before it.

Occasionally, residents of nearby mountain communities would spot one of the aforementioned Sandwich people creeping through the woods, usually bearing a dripping carcass of some indeterminate origin.  Sometimes, the creeper would pause to bite into the raw animal flesh and proceed to masticate the bloody remains with obvious drooling pleasure. 

II.

Wilma Watkins was born in a cave high above Sandwich township on October 31, 1983.  Luverne Watkins, her mildly retarded mother, had given birth to an illegitimate son several years before.  The child was so hideously deformed that Luverne carried him high into the mountains a few days after his birthday and threw his bent body down a mineshaft.  Infanticide was common in Sandwich, along with matricide, patricide and all other forms of homicide.  The only “‘cide” that Sandwich could have used a little more of was spermicide.

The birth of Wilma Watkins came as a total surprise to Luverne.  She was a very large young woman, so the expansion of her sizeable belly went unnoticed by everyone in town, including herself.  On October 31, 1983, Luverne was in her “secret cave” hiding from her father, Old Watkins.  Old Watkins took great pleasure in beating (and having sex with) his only daughter on a regular basis.  Earlier that morning, Luverne had rushed out of their ramshackle farmhouse when Old Watkins stabbed her hand with a fork as she helped herself to another bowl of kidneys and brains.  

Luverne began to have contractions while she was ascending the mountain.  By the time she reached the cave, she was certain she was going to die.  She lay down on a threadbare blanket and proceeded to scream so hideously with each labor pang that the residents down below cowered in their hovels, certain that the unnameable terror was preparing to storm down the mountain and devour them all.  As dusk was beginning to fall, Luverne staggered back down the mountain, carrying a tiny, bloody, blanket wrapped bundle in her arms.  She disappeared into her father’s house and was rarely seen after that day.

III.

Wilma grew up in that isolated farmhouse on the outskirts of Sandwich, and her childhood was anything but normal.  Her mother’s mental retardation and neglect, coupled with Old Watkin’s cruelty, fashioned her into a strange and lonely being.  She had attended school for a little while, but Old Watkins withdrew her when her third grade teacher told him that Wilma was one of the most beautiful and intelligent children she had ever taught.  He wanted Wilma to be as homely and stupid as her mother, for he knew that smart and attractive women were much more likely to rebel against authority. 

Nobody (except her teacher) cared that Wilma disappeared from the world, and, like her mother, she was all but forgotten by everyone in town.  As she grew older and stranger, she began to wander the mountains during the spring and summer months, straying further and further from home with each passing year.  Old Watkins became frail and bedridden, and Luverne, ever the devoted lover, rarely left his side.

Shortly after her seventeenth birthday, Wilma discovered an old ghost town hidden deep in the mountains.  This town was not on any map, and its last inhabitant had died about twenty years earlier.  There were two buildings left standing:  one was an old cabin that had caved in on itself, and the other was a large and astoundingly intact structure that appeared to be some kind of meeting hall.  Wilma was immediately drawn to this place.  She became the new tenant that very same day.

IV.

Wilma discovered the crypt the next morning.  The stairs leading down into the underground cavern were hidden beneath a huge wooden table at the front of the hall.  As she peered into the darkness, she caught a whiff of sweet flesh-smelling air emanating from somewhere deep in the dark hole.  The stench was unlike anything she had ever smelled before–it repelled her and made her mouth water at the same time.  She was too frightened to venture into that long darkness, but she also instinctively knew that the thing or things that were imprisoned down there in the dank chill would soon control her every thought and action.  She was ready for it.

She returned to the farmhouse one last time to gather some supplies to take to her new digs.  While rummaging in a shadowy corner of the cellar in case there were some overlooked canned goods or old linens that she could take with her, Wilma uncovered a stack of old books.  She loved reading and was always thrilled when she happened upon a book every now and then, so she was delighted with her find.  She tossed the books on top of her rapidly expanding pile of household items.

The next day, after several trips back and forth from the farmhouse to her new residence, Wilma was finally ready to call it quits and relax for a little while.  She grabbed a long slender book from the pile she’d thrown on the big table and felt an immediate electric jolt course through her body.  At the same time, a sharp piercing squeal arose from the darkened crypt.  “This is it,” she thought as she opened the cover.  “This is the moment you were born for.”

V.

Neatonummibuns was handwritten on the title page in bold black letters.  Underneath the title was an inscription which read, “Enter at your own risk!  William Watkins, October, 1953.”  After repeating the strange title to herself several times until she was sure she had it right, Wilma took a deep breath and turned the page.  The book was filled with spells and incantations written in a nearly indecipherable coded language. Several frustrating days and nights were spent poring over the strange book before Wilma finally cracked the code.  Swallowing her fear, Wilma pushed the heavy table aside and approached the crypt entrance.  In a resonant voice, she incanted, “Lettuce, bacon, pickles, cheese–bring Dog-Sowbreath to me please!”

Almost immediately, an ear-splitting squeal arose from the cavernous crypt.  The squeal was followed by the sound of a cage door slamming open.  A few seconds later, the underground stairs resounded with the clatter of gigantic hooves striking against rock.  As the entity clumped up the stairs, Wilma was once again struck by the mouth-watering aroma of sweetly roasted flesh.

The creature emerged from the staircase and faced Wilma.  She gasped in astonishment and backed several steps toward the door as she took her first look at Dog-Sowbreath.  The creature was about nine feet tall, and its naked torso was covered with a flaky, crusty skin.  Viscous and smelly maroon-colored fluid oozed from every orifice of its flat and circular shaped body.  Its arms and legs resembled pig appendages, and the gigantic head jutting above its strangely configured torso was pinkish in tone and covered with fine and prickly white hairs.  Huge tusks jutted out of its elongated, thin-lipped mouth, and a porcine nose and opalescent pointy ears completed the creature’s bizarre facial apppearance.

“I am Dog-Sowbreath,” the creature proclaimed in a low-pitched squeal.  “Eat me!”  The creature tore off a piece of its torso and held it out to Wilma.  Wilma noticed that it was filled with sweet smelling meat.  She ate. 

VI.

Over the next few weeks, Wilma resurrected several more Great Old Sandwiches.  Dog-Sowbreath was soon joined by Cthulmoomoo, Eatahamburg, and the Nameless Sandwich, which resembled a giant pita stuffed with crab salad.  Wilma ate pieces of every one, thus binding herself to them for all eternity. 

For awhile, Wilma and the Great Old Sandwiches roamed the hills above Sandwich, Colorado.  Sometimes, when they grew bored or restless, they’d terrorize some of the mountain communities, but they usually kept to themselves.  When the Great Old Sandwiches needed to refresh their outer bread or inner fillings, Wilma would chant a simple spell and the Sandwiches would be young again.

Recently, Wilma and the gang have set up shop in the Flatiron mountains above Boulder.  The Great Old Sandwiches are concocting an evil plan to make night forays into the city, where they will force some of the more rabid vegetarian residents to eat their meat and become sandwich whores like Wilma.  They figure that this foul scheme should take about ten years to complete. 

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Well, that’s it!  As you know, I like to host giveaways, and today is no exception.  I will be sending this cute little Cthulhu sucker stick-on doll  to the first person who writes the names of five Lovecraftian Gods in the comments section of this post.  It doesn’t matter if they’re Elder Gods, Outer Gods or Lesser Gods as long as they were concocted by Lovecraft himself.  Good luck!

Oh, and one more thing before I go…HAPPY HALLOWEEN! 

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Responses

  1. Cthulhu
    Nyarlathotep
    Dagon, the fish-god
    Bokrug
    Zo-Kalar
    Tamash
    Lobon

    Off to finish my story!

  2. Awesome, Jill! You have won the sucker-thingy. I don’t have the toy yet, but I know it will be cute. The one I sent to Steph was so adorable that I didn’t want to send it at all!

    I can’t wait to read your story! I’ll post about it too. Woot!

  3. Nice one: enjoyed the puns – have only just finished my own attempt (at around 23:20 my time!)

    It’s harder to write Lovecraft than you’d think, isn’t it?

  4. Okay, mine’s up…I’ll be back to read yours later (I wanted to finish mine before reading the others). I have to go out to dinner now so I can avoid the trick or treaters.

  5. Ewwwwwwwwwwwww!!!!!! (Mitch is dragging his feet on getting ready to go out, so I came back and read….should’ve waited until after dinner.)

    Well done…especially as I think you chose the longest of his stories! I’m especially fond of the spermicide line. If I dream of Dog-Sowbreath tonight, you’ll be hearing about it!

  6. […] bookmarks tagged frail The Sandwich Whore saved by 3 others     mewchichi bookmarked on 11/01/08 | […]

  7. Awesome! I really enjoyed this.

  8. eww…creepy. No really, well done!!!

  9. Thanks, everyone! And yes, Jack, it is hard to write Lovecraft. His wordiness just overwhelms after awhile. I’m heading over to visit you and Jill right now to read your praiseworthy stories.

  10. […] The Sandwhich Whore (based on The Dunwich […]

  11. I can’t believe you three did this (was it just the three of you, in on the dare?). Excellent composition, I’m impressed.

    I chuckled at the way you tagged it, although I wouldn’t call this a feeble attempt!

  12. LOL-that was great! Love the CO references.


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