The man entered the newly renovated Gentle Covert Hotel. It was a spacious circular lobby with golden pillars surrounding a lounge area that aimed towards the hard oak desks of the reception desks on both sides of the space. When the man walked in, all eyes were discrepantly on him. He felt the jolting energy in the room diminish to hush and weariness. Not the first time people stopped their daily routine to feel their safety shattered by just one reality-busting figure. Over time, he started to enjoy the attention. It wasn't often a “negro” entered a historically racist hotel known for its dozens of black chefs, maids, and porters disappearing on one particular night. But oh no-they were never supposed to discuss that part of history.
Besides the needle-like stares and whispers, the Gentle Covert Hotel had the scent of freshly mopped floors and a hint of cinnamon in the air. The warmness behind the chilling energy almost comforted the man as he walked towards the reception desk to his right. The woman was blonde, with striking blue eyes that widened for just a split second at his sight. Even his brothers back in Compton turned their heads back to him. He was tall, at least six feet two-hundred-fifty-pounds, and completely bald-headed. A bushy dark beard covered his contemplating grin as the receptionist forced out a welcome, but not of offensiveness but of the tone of what-are-you-doing-here.
“I would like a room for tonight.” The man’s voice was like thunder. The receptionist simply typed in a few strokes into the desktop in front of her, trying to compose herself in front of the giant. “We have just the room for you, sir. Room 304 has just been cleaned and waiting for your lovely stay!” she was too lively, too forceful. He could tell in her voice. He pushed the thought aside as he gave her his credit card, not cash like she thought he would slip out, no rolls of twenties or hundreds. She stood up and went to the back for confirmation from her co-workers. She came back a second later with a key card and another “smile” on her face before she said “Welcome to Gentle Covert! I hope you enjoy your stay!”
He let his grin show. “I most definitely will Jesse. Thank you.” he walked away with his duffel bag, letting the knowledge he read her name tag and would remember the weary woman for the rest of the night.
September 25th, 1954
She was supposed to wheel the food up to room 304. That’s it. Knock on the door, present dinner to the guests, and be done with it. Brendalyn Brown was twenty-four and was happy but cautious that she became a new maid to the Gentle Covert Hotel after an opening arose last week. It was better than her last job in the kitchens of a diner where she had to not only be harassed by a racist boss but by her co-workers, other negros who were either jealous or horny and realizing she was an unmarried woman at that time and age. She was grateful her friend Sheila mentioned this job to her. It would help support her for the next coming years. at least until she finished her education and she could become a nurse and maybe find a less racist boss.
That was the plan. It was supposed to be that. But on that night, a blood moon appeared and that meant one thing to the inhabitants of room 304. Brendalyn or “Brenda” knocked on the door as told. The riff-raff inside quieted. A quiet snicker slithered under the door and into her ears. She shuddered. When they opened the door, a burly white man with messy blonde hair and a stained wife-beater and the odor of sweat and cologne grinned at her. He cackled to his friends and he stepped aside to let the server in.
Brenda never was in a circle like that night. Never around that many “white folks”. But she was determined to leave her small ghetto area of New Jersey and make a life for herself without needing a husband and kids. At least yet anyway. She realized why her mother always told her to stay away from the ones with the hungry eyes. She never knew what she meant by that until now.
The man flopped on the soft mattress and breathed in the scent of fresh sheets. The room was nice, small with a desk and wall mirror above and a dresser with a flat-screen tv that flicked on with the press of the remote in the man’s hand. The news was the same. Politics, infomercials, heartwarming stories then back to the crappy events of the world all over. War in Syria and oil pipes burst on another reservation, heck even a dragon attack on the coast of an island. The man scoffed at the tv. The world changed so much. So much on that day. Now, this was normal. He laughed out loud at that thought.
He realized what felt like a week ago, that this world was more morbid, malevolent, and abnormal than he ever thought. It just finally bubbled to the surface. He stopped and stared into space. He could feel it. The humming in his ears reverberated all the way down to his stomach. The voices appeared a moment later. It was like an invisible hand turned his head to the curtains leading to the patio outside and into the crowded night. He stood and opened the doors, then sped out onto the patio and into the cooling night of September. Ignoring the honking and hum of traffic, sirens, and yelling people down below, he focused on one particular vehicle coming into the hotel. It was a black1954 Chevrolet Bel Air, way out of its time and way too expensive to be riding around town in. Another came in after it, this time red. The last two cars were modern, a gray Sedan and navy blue Trailblazer. The voices in his head grew louder. Them. Tonight was the night. And they arrived as expected.
September 25th, 1954
Their sacrifice was made. Enough blood and semen were given to please a thousand elder gods. at least that’s what Jebediah thought. He read the scriptures up and down like the bible his grandma made him do when he was twelve. The only difference was actual work and belief. On faith, only blood and promises of riches and agelessness for decades to come. His college friend Thomas was smiling at the moon, eyes full of glee, oblivious to the two other men behind them letting their fear seep out of their cloaks. He had nothing to fear. He was a thorough man, making sure to translate and read the book top to bottom and to collect every piece for the ritual. Surprisingly the nigger was the easiest to obtain. He didn't have to worry about no police peeping around. To everyone else, he was just a Harvard grad visiting his old New Jersey town with friends. But tonight was a night of rewards being fulfilled. And he would get his reward.
The four elderly men were escorted by their sons and daughters, well-fed children who didn't have to worry about any luggage and carrying even a credit card as everything was arranged since two years ago. Two years since their fathers decided to clue them in on what made the family wealthy all those decades ago. After shock, disgust, and anger, it was replaced by pride, trust, and an unquenchable thirst for their “reward.”
The lobby was occupied of course, but not for long. It took plenty of “bribing” or buying the actual hotel, but by midnight, the hotel lobby would be clear and a special room would be kept secure for their arrival. At least that’s what they told Jebediah. He was a see-to-believe-it type of man. It's what helped him stay alive all these years. He felt a smile on his face as he entered the mansion-sized banquet hall lined with candles on all sides, stark red roses, and the sweet scent of cinnamon and the zest of citrus fill his nose. He almost felt himself melt back into the old memories of that night. The night that changed everything. Now he would make his final deal to the elder gods and pass the wealth on to his children, before going to his eternal slumber with the entities that were rewarded with so much wealth all those years ago.
He just had to wait. Midnight.
In the deep confines of his blackened soul, a court appeared. They all stood in the darkness conversing with one another, some in languages lost to history. It was all the same lines and curses until another voice appeared out of all of them. The young spirit stood in the center of the court and through the light filtering out to the real world, her face was unveiled.
The man understood. He checked his watch. 11:54. Almost time.
Jebediah was beyond his years, over eighty years old, and finally old age was getting to him. He had no choice but to walk on a cane and be led to his chair by the youngest of his sons, Jonathan, a brunette like his mother, the only one in the family who didn't take on his father’s blonde hair and blue eyes. Apart of him swore his dead wife fucked that “wetback” back in Cuba. He let that traitorous anger swell down back in him as he saw the last three of his friends be seated next to him. Thomas was an old crone like him, yet sharply dressed while the last two, Lung cancer-ridden Antony and Marcus, the two fear-ridden rats from all those years ago sat. Antony adjusted his oxygen tank while Marcus let his model daughter pour him a glass of wine. He couldn't help but stare down her shirt at her powdered breasts. Jebediah remembered Marcus well. He enjoyed the beginning parts of the ritual more than anyone. He for sure provided enough of his essence on the nigger girl to see them here today.
It was the bell from Jebediah’s eldest son Jebediah Jr. that caught the room’s attention Like a replica of his father, he was tall, with silky white skin, even let his hair go down to his shoulders but he in a neat ponytail besides the protests of his father. His physique was better than his father’s at his age, more athletic than a thick father figure. Jebediah Jr. smiled and raised a glass to the room as the roof above them uncovered to reveal a starry night sky, the full moon, the blood moon shining down on them through the glass room.
“That. That started it all. On this night, in 1954, the four founding fathers of the great corporation known as Visak Industries, the leading supplier in Oil, Iron, and Weaponry for a proud country was born. Through blood and sacrifice, they now reside in the past to torch on to us, our dear and chosen children. I want to thank you all for attending this evening. This is a special toast, but not the last, to my father, the visionary, Jebediah, and to his cohorts and dear friends, Thomas, Marcus, and Antony. You look as great as ever.”
The room laughed as the man on the oxygen tube choked out a cackle. Jebediah couldn't help but smile at the boy. Charismatic enough to hide disdain towards his father’s “friends,” and a charming smile to soothe the women in the room. He was going to be great. He was going to do just fine in the future.
“But not only they should be thanked for our prosperous future. To the sweat, blood, and tears to those not to be named. To those lost. And to those born in this world to serve us as a family so that we may honor the god that brought us here today.”
The room nodded to that. Jebediah could remember them all. Every year after 1954 for twenty years, on every blood moon, a negro to a Mexican, even an immigrant from Asia was used as an offering to their dear gods. It would be immoral to use one of Aryan blood, such pure blood for their gods after all! Their gods loved darker meat anyways…
“A toast. To a great past. And an even greater future.” Jebediah Jr. raised his glass and everyone in the room followed. Jebediah rose his glass. He didn't care how many negros went missing, for they were food to a higher purpose. And he would gladly do it all again, and again and again. He was glad his son would follow that path too.
Cackling thundered across the room. Everyone looked up and searched around the empty banquet hall. The soft light of the moon changed. It changed darker...no...red.
The four elderly men stared up at the blood moon and gasped. Around them, screams sounded. A shrieking cry sunk into their ears. The room darkened, then a warm liquid splattered across the room. Shattered glass, wood, and something tearing, something wet, meaty sent shudders down their spine.
Through the darkness, a figure appeared. Jebediah, though he was old and withered, could recognize that shape. It was like 1954 met him all those years ago. The small whimpering figure of the negro girl. He could hear her whimpering, begging. But those were not his memories… they were here.
Please… I won't tell nobody. I won't tell nobody!
He could hear his old friend Antony’s children gather around their dying father, a heart attack finally setting in. Their screams followed him shortly. Wet meat flung across the room and startled Jebediah. He could recognize the copper smell and how it stank in the air. His heart stopped. The lights flickered and in the center of the room, a large burly negro watched him. He thought he was a negro. His face was plastered in white and black makeup, but his eyes….
They were red.
The lights flickered off, then back on. Brendalyn Brown stared back at the old man. She was naked, covered in bruises, cuts, scrapes, and foul fluids from that night. Beside her, dozens of more negros lined her. More women battered and lathered in blood, all looking at him. They started walking towards him. He cursed and yelled, but his anger was masked by their unison chanting. They were saying something in a language he couldn't understand.
The lights went out one more time. He could feel the table below him lift into the air, more chunks of meat and bones fly across him before a presence was in front of him. He could smell its breath. The metallic smell made him want to hurl. The lights came back on and the burly negro and Brendalyn were one, flickering in and out of each other, but speaking in unison.
Your fallen gods are waiting for you. And your bloodline…
He could only scream before there was nothing left.