Heathen Berries by Thierry Lachaux

Saturday evening at the pavilion

Prelude   

(The fresco)

Interlude
(About a tourist who wants to enact a sacrifice  as depicted on the fresco)
Ramon Gandarians' commentary

Panel one

(José’s torments)

Interlude two

(David with Thierry)

This is only the beginning of the story. If it interests and you want more, contact me. mailto:alekis@alekis.com

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Prelude

"In the midst of the tourist centre of the biggest town of Middle America, on the shore of the idyllic lake Chapulthepec, there is a wonderful pavilion. It is a copy of an Aztec temple built at the end of the nineteenth century. All over the inner walls there are frescoes depicting an offering from the time of the height of this bloody culture. The victim lies bound on the offering stone, a youth, his ink black hair reaching down to his shoulders, his chest turned  to face the observer. A bony sunburnt priest wearing a loincloth with a phallic symbol, woven hemp sandals and a crown made of colourful  parrot feathers cuts his bleeding heart out of his chest with a sharp obsidian knife, The youth turns his dying eyes towards the clouded blue sky while the priest holds the dripping heart in his bony brown hands showing it to the spectator and to the smiling priests standing in a circle around him.

At this beautiful pavilion once the family of the Spanish Vice King who lived nearby at the castle passed nice hours at the lake's shores. Today swarms of tourists come to admire the monument. It's an area of luxury flats. Families of high members of the government and of manager of international firms live in this area. But in the evenings the pavilion is frequented by circles which are avoided by the decent citizen. The pavilion stands alone on the lawn. Placed romantically at the shore of the lake. It's a Friday evening early in September. I José McDuff, have been brought in chains to this pavilion, carried in a van over bumpy roads. Afterwards the burly moustached servants of my master carried me in their muscular arms into the pavilion. My eyes were bandaged. I only realised were I was when I smelt the foul air of these rotten red flowers they used to call the devil's perfume back at the days of King Montezuma. I shudder. The master uses to bring his victims into this pavilion where nobody is about to listen when he wants to punish them to death. Every descent citizen keeps off this pavilion at nights and when the mafia uses it.

Thursday, I was still with Ramon, there came a wholly unexpected phone. The high pitched, shrill voice of the master. "Ah, at last I hear something from you!" It was a gross exaggeration. From me he would certainly never have heard anything. But he chuckled. I trembled. His voice alone gave me shudders. He continued. "  We very much missed you. We shed big tears for you." And again he laughed maliciously. Then he continued threateningly. "Keep it well in mind," he says "Nobody can flee from me. I will see you on Friday evening at the pavilion, and your guarding angel will have left you.". I was thunderstruck. How had he found out where I stayed now? The telephone was unexpected. These very few days I had lived happy with Ramon and now everything was finished. I had had the illusion that this paradise would go on for ever, that at last I was delivered from this nightmare I had been living in. The master had said, too: "We never lost your track. We only let you live these few days with Gandarian in order that you could betray your new friend. For you, there is no running away from us, but soon you will have your eternal rest in the coffin as you don't love us. Long enough have I enjoyed your beauty. But you are getting impertinent and there are lots of other cherubims around. There is an end to everything and nobody leaves me alive. Sunday is the day of the Lord. I will sacrifice you on my shrine in company of our friends. Friday I want to enjoy you fully for me alone. " The words echoed in my head and the whole truth came to me. I startled. With a loud bump the receiver had fallen out of my hands on the floor. The terrible laugh of my master resounded in my ears.  My past had reached up with me. Then Ramon had left me because Koja was lost in Moscow. I barricaded the door but it did not help. The servants of the master smashed the door and knocked down all  furniture in Ramon’s flat. Especially all his nice CDs with Bach's Cantatas, which I loved to listen to. I had put the player together with the cantata "My last day with  the Lord" in my pocket. But they took it from me.

A warm sirocco has stirred up the dry dust of the high lands. As it whistles through the few remaining trees and the bushes I feel a pressure in my head. My body still aches from yesterday's whip lashes, the rape of this morning and the torture the whole night in the hands of his watchmen. All my hopes have vanished: of having at last found a friend who would help me to escape my hopeless situation, of helping me to free myself from the grip of the Mafia.  They had come to nothing and I have brought Ramon in a perilous situation.  I was too much integrated into their drug and sex and humanitarian crimes, they cannot let me go living because I know to much. I am also drug addict and have debts towards them. I have no papers, never had any having being a runaway and would probably be put to the frontier by the police. They will certainly denounce me if I don't do what they tell me to do. I could put no money aside, had to deliver anything to the organization. I don't know about it's hierarchy and where the higher charges came from. But there is a whisper that there is a filature with the richest European country. Probably to rob us even more. Here, there are lots of these fat tourists around for whom we are only a cheap sexual game, and they do as if they did not know how we, their free wild, are abused by the gang leaders of the mafia.

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Interlude

I love the interior the pavilion. I like its atmosphere. But I can't afford the high entrance fee affordable only for rich tourists. But we street boys all have made its acquaintance. Once, a tourist wanted to show it to me and I will never forget it. As I had been in need I had taken no consideration of his look, only of his thick wallet. But of course I should have thought that such a bald headed type squinting out of small completely reddened eyes with thick black brows had to become dangerous. He brought my attention to the ritual which is painted. I asked him what if he could explain me what it meant. And this brought him to the idea to make with me what they do to the victim there. But I did not realize it. He said he would tell me everything if I were nice to him. He promised me a lot of money and I did not even dare asking for a prepayment. He brought me to a distant and unfrequented part of the park. Perhaps I would not have followed if I had not been in such a need money. I thought he was just one of these normal sex tourists, had already knelt down, opened his fly, as he suddenly grasped me by my hair, pulled a knife out of his trouser pockets and pressed it on my throat. I felt the sharp cold edge of the iron pressing into my flesh. He hold so fast I could not free myself. I was kneeling before him, felt warm liquid flowing down on my skin. Bending down as if he wanted to kiss me, he put both hands on my shoulders and squeezed me till my backside was down on my heels, holding the knife firm on my neck. Suddenly I felt the knife on my breast pressing at the edge of my nipples. Did he want to cut them? In panic I tried to unroll backwards but he hold me firm and I felt like being held in pliers. I had to think of a trick to get free. I shouted in fear: "Look out for the rat behind you!" He turned his head to look behind and I could kick him with my knee into his balls. He cried, hold his testicles with both hands, lost his balance and fell backwards, dropping the knife. Quickly I got up, seized the knife and sprang aside, turned and run away. He had not expected such a reaction and needed time to recover before he could run after me. But with his long legs he ran much faster than I could feeling the pain on the neck and at the nipples. Soon I smelt his garlic breathing directly behind me. I was so dumb to cast a view behind me, tripped over a root and fell down on my knees. But falling I had the instinct to kick out with my legs behind me. He cried again and I knew I had hit again. I got up and ran but not long and again I sensed the garlic behind me. He hissed: "You nasty boy, you will pay for it." I had to act without scruples. I slipped behind a tree which was on my way. As he stopped to grab me, I run him the knife into his belly. He gasped and fell on his knees. I ran away till I deemed to be safe, hid behind another trunk and peered towards him. I did not see him but heard his rattle. Was he dying? But I dared not go back to ascertain myself. I ran till the edge of the park, climbed over the fence. Then I strolled along the road not to awake suspicion. But his rattled breathing when he fell, remained in my ears for nights after. I could not sleep. Saw his ghost with the knife sticking in his belly everywhere. Did I kill him? I never had done anything so cruel to anybody and did not want him to be harmed. When I saw a church and there was no priest around I sneaked into it to pray for him and light a candle. I had acted for my self-defense but of course the police would not believe me. But I got accustomed to feeling guilty.  And as time heals, I forgot. Rightly, as I now know. Just a month ago I was again at my usual place. A tourist was nervously looking for my colleague Juan and turned his back towards me. His purse was peering invitingly out of his back pocket. I couldn't resist and stretched my fingers to take it but inadvertently he turned and I looked into his eyes. I nearly choked. The blood red whites narrowed to a strip, the beard, the bald head and the protruding belly! It was him again. I thought to see a ghost. Quick-witted I ducked and ran away taking my legs up to my knees. I sincerely hope he did not recognize me.

A wooden bench runs along the wall under the painting. I am very nervous, fear the wrath of the master. He promised me certain death and I was already several times against my wish the witness of of his killing performances. He will certainly put me to death cold-blooded, refined, brutally and painfully in a way he will never be found as the perpetrator.  I am very much afraid of pain. Not very courageous. I would do everything to avoid it and rather die at once. Since I know Ramon I cling to life and there is this hope lingering that he will save me off the clutches of Juarez. I don't want to die now, with all my life before me. Also it is not realistic, I want to think that the master will pardon me once more if I do everything to please him. My charm always worked so well before. In my fears I forget that I promised to Ramon before, that I would remain sure of myself and strong. Also it is plausible to me that as Ramon says the self sure ones are not tormented so much. But through the treatment of these last days I have fallen again back in my old behavior, have lost all my self-esteem. I am again the typical victim and am ready to do whatever he wants. And there is no help to expect from the police, they work hand in hand with Juarez. This will be considered as a disciplinary action within the mafia They can shelf enough criminal deeds on my head, deeds I had to do to subsist in this sub world, like helping on burglaries, sale of drugs of which the gain always went to the organization.

I stand naked, in the midst  the room where they deposited me, my whole body trembling and feeling cold. But its its hot and damp as in a bathroom. Arms handcuffed, legs foot bonded and both chained together.

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Ramon Gandarians' commentary

  

Ramon Gandarian puts aside the paper from which he was reading. He is on visit to Thierry who showed him this story telling him that he would appreciate his comments. He sighs. This is very crude but he doesn't want to offend his host. He doesn’t want to get himself to much involved in Thierry’s story. And tells a commentary which historians can afford to say without offending: "All victims on the paintings of the sacrifices of the Aztecs are shown smiling and happy. The comments of many historians to this funny description of men submitted to various brutal tortures and enduring them with a smile on the lips is that they were so happy to endure these tortures because they believed in their Gods. Of course this is balderdash. These victims were heavily doped and therefore didn't resent the physical pain. Many doping substances come from the New World. The victims were war prisoners and had to be the scapegoats for the mistakes of those who had caused the wars or catastrophes. They were used as scapegoats because they had no political organisation who would defend them. Today in our much better modern society, the leaders of our society still need  scapegoats and they take them from the same segment of society, under the victims there are many runaway street children, boys and girls alike, who are orphans, or of very poor parents who couldn’t afford to feed them.  Some could no longer endure the oppression of their parents, or  run away because their parents are not capable of accepting their sexual or intellectual difference. They had to be criminal to survive and in their innocence they do crimes which our society especially abhors. And with cutting their neck would be strong politicians can profile themselves as strong in the eyes of potential voters. Nobody realises how much more criminal and revolting the deeds of these politicians are. But there are no lobbies to fight for standing of the outcast . And they are easy preys, José is one of them and the hero of this story. He was heavily doped.  In these Aztec times they had not to pay for their dope themselves but today they have. As they were previously in the name of religion, nowadays these scapegoats are still submitted to terribly humiliating harassment   in the name of written or unwritten laws which harden the fate of the feeble of our society the more as they can be better controlled (not protected) by authorities. The priests of  today are Judges, policemen, and also Mafia bosses and feel themselves as heroes of the society. They are never harassed for the infringements of laws they cause, e.g. for the killing and the destruction of subsistence. The Mafia boss of your story, Juarez, thought he had a  pure and holy conscience, and later on sued me for defamation! I as principal witness against Juarez, I was treated like some impostor. As I never veiled my thinking and said everything outright, was known as a critic of this society, my opinions were not considered worthy . They gave me the Literary Nobel Prize to make me harmless. I used the money to build up homes for homeless gay people, And now they want to give me the Peace Nobel Prize together with an Arabian politician who assumedly fought for freedom of women in his country. I laugh about these manipulation. These prizes simply help me to earn money and to make propaganda for my homes. Judge Bachschwänzler acquitted Juarez and I now know he had received bribing money. For me its not important.  For the rich  European tax heaven country I come from I am a non value. I have withdrawn all my participations I inherited in this country and buy and sell shares only through my representatives for purposes of speculation.  I have withdrawn from all direct representations in firms my grandfather held. My name is only known as an uncomfortable writer in the name of a segment of the population people don’t want to know. In any case, as I enlarge my net of refugees homes for homosexually misused young men my direct fortune dwindles. I think it is not sufficient to simply forbid prostitution. How else can runaway boys or girls or those in countries who do not have even an appropriate education and a trade to earn a living with a decent job subsist. Especially as today politicians want to save money, and where can you better safe money than on social welfare programs for the speechless poor!  I always thought that when you only  introduce laws against child abuse and child work but do nothing to give these children an opportunity to earn their life more appropriately or learn a decent trade is no means to solve this problem. Else I also know that some are born liking people of the same gender  and that that is not only the fault of seduction.  Also some are sexually ripe in a young age, and they do what they wish to do notwithstanding the laws and infringe them often without knowing it. As they cannot do it legally they dive into the illegal world and become afterwards game for all sorts of bandits. I try to amend practically to this bad state of things. I offer to young not yet established homosexual males who have by their history ended by earning their life within the sex trade, a place in homes I am setting up, when they have reached a point in their life when they are about to drown. There already exists a whole net of these homes especially in the third world countries. We have no moral or religious aims and don’t force them to change their manner of life altogether.  We, that is a whole team of psychologists, male nurses and street workers  offer them shelter, food, appropriate psychological counsel and offer them when they are ready a financial and counselling support to get an appropriate trade. But its entirely of their free will, food and shelter, medical help is always offered. Only the ones who are dependant upon drugs have to submit themselves to a withdrawal cure as I do not want drug dealers in my homes. We are very consequent and use guardians to prevail this. I have to say this for the ears of whoever thinks he can abuse me. I put all the prices I won for my literary work, the money I earn with my books and courses into my homes for street boys and rent boys. And am proud that my net now comprises towns in all the world and is growing steadily. Of course I also make collections for this aim. But people do still have wrong ideas in what concerns the male sex trade, think you can avoid it by simply forbidding it. You generally cannot discuss it without lots of unrational feelings coming up. Of course my books, especially my Ali having come out in nearly all languages, much contribute to a liberalisation of people's moral thinking, but this proceeds unfortunately very slowly. For the moments I still support my homes heavily with my own fortune. And selling the art collection of my grandfather and bringing it into a Trust using it, financially brought important new funds. There is also an aim of my literary work, fight for man's sensuous rights as well as the women have fought for their rights till now. But now its enough of my philosophy.

It corresponds to Thierry's character to write in oversized pictures. Also, if you would know his apparition you would never think of him having so much fantasy! But I anticipate, I do not want to influence you. He is a nice chum, has a fine prick and a well formed ass and sucks perfectly. For my taste he is too much thinking about God and the World all the time. Where do you get if you always think if what you do in the world is moral? Nowhere, and that's where he got! A chap needs some pleasure in life, else he gets morose and dull. But its interesting how astonishingly rich of imagination Thierry is and I'll bring him to other ideas. Eh! Ah you think I should shut up. Should keep you to your lecture. Ok. I'll finish it. I admit, I have always been sort of gabby, Alec always scolds me. I am boisterous and preposterous, a real Gandarian. But let José tell you the forthcoming of the story.

 

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Panel one:

"Bind him fast" they said," he is a champion of breaking out!" I am rather slim, have a brown skin,  my red hair long and hanging over my small shoulders down to my hips. My face looks to me from the mirror, narrow and fine with an elegant  nose, almondshaped yellowbrown eyes with long silky eyelashes. I rather like my look, am proud of myself and Ramon praised my beauty, he called me his supple fawn while I nestled to him, beautiful and intelligent like Antinous.  It was such a good feeling. Now they have pierced both my nostrils, have fixed rings and a chain, to lead me as you lead a bull. Now everybody sees I am a prostitute. My supple skin is of a fair brown. I have a graceful body like a girl. And I always wanted to be one. I dislocate my head to look down my body. Now I see it, my shame, the rose they branded on my thighs. It was to keep me of running away, trying getting a friend and to get loose of the Mafia. Here in this country nobody would dare helping me. I am marked as the property of the Mafia and anybody who would help me freeing me from their bonds would be punished by this powerful organisation. I crouch down, my knees pressed on the concrete floor; pull my chest back nearly loosing the balance, till I can feel my iron slave band with the outstretched fingers of my bound hands. But try as I may I do not succeed feeling the rose brand with my fingers. I remember how painful it was when my father, the crude red headed monster, branded my left thigh with the hot iron. I shudder but concurrently feel the excitement in my body. I hate myself for this emotion.  But the hill below my small underpants has grown. I feel the pressure of the Dildo they introduced into my back. It is fixed with a small chain over my chest to the iron chain between cuffs and anklebonds. I remember how I had to push it in, kneeling before the moustached awestrikening servants of the master. It went hard, ached, but they struck me with their whips thinking it wasn't done fast enough. And I had to suck them later.

 

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Interlude two:

David laughs loud. He lies on the bed, Thierry's head on his lap and listens to him reading from his book. Thierry cuddles to David's lean body, feels his silky hair on his head, caresses his soft skin with his hands.  It's so nice in the small flat, from the bed you see directly through the window over a blue lake and into the surrounding alps. The belly feels nice and full from the pennette al melanzzano. Thierry cooked for both and they ate together drinking a fine bottle of Chianti. David has his day off. Tonight they will go together to the ballet. They are playing Romeo and Julia from Prokofieff, Each day is nicer than the last together with his love David and having been at last able to stand to himself. "It's not how you see it." David now says. "José is not such a doll as you describe him. He never liked the masochist side of his activities. At least not as I know him. It's not as you imagine it." Nevertheless. I don't care. It's so nice with David. We caress each other, I sigh of pleasure. And suddenly the fax machine goes. A Fax from Ramon. "I am coming to Lausanne with Alec. Not today but next week. Have  to know such a complete fool as you are. Greetings." The fax falls from my hands. David takes it. "Did you fax him? How did he know our address." I tell him of my first fax I was ashamed and did not show it to him. When he was looking for Koja in Los Angeles and lay in a hotel bed badly hurt. Then of the one of Ramon and the one I wrote him. He shrugs. "It's your cup of coffee. Now you will have to handle him yourself." I am happy he does not react worse to my having done something behind his back. I think again how I met David the first time. It was night. The moon shone  and it was warm. Sitting one besides the other on the park bench and caressing each other. And Thierry says: “I am so happy I know you. You are Ramon’s best friend. I so much long to know Ramon too. Do you understand?” Again one of Thierry’s funny complicated sentences. He wrote about Ramon and he invented him, me and everybody. He should already know us enough.

 

But I, David, understand. I look at him. His fine features. Even with his beard and his grey streaked hair he looks so nice. I simply cannot be angry with him. And he cooks wonderfully especially as I as musician have never cooked more than scrambled eggs and things out of the tin. I say: “It will be fine. In any case it will be nice to see Ramon again. And also Alec, he is such a nice chap, with his fair hair and blue eyes and nearly as well behaved as you."

 

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