Writing Group: Loving Eldritch Parents

Hello everyone!

We’ve got something really special to kick off our writing group. We were supposed to do this a few weeks back, but now’s as good a time as any. It is October, after all.

This week’s prompt is…

Wholesome, loving parents, but they’re also eldritch horrors

Now the obvious direction to take this one is toward humor and hyperbole. Easy to have a lot of fun imagine Cthulhu reading you bed-time stories at night, Yog-Sothoth helping you with your math homework, Shub Niggurath confusing your name with your alien siblings’, and those are all a lot of fun and totally valid! But you could also make this pretty sad or science-fiction-y if written the right way. What if the townsfolk are after your misunderstood aberration of a mother who you’ve been protecting in the basement for years? What if you’ve done something to accidentally transform dear old dad into a non-euclidean horror, and now you have to figure what it was and how to get him back?

Lots of angles to look at this one from! I’m stoked to see where y’all go with it.

Remember, this is part of our weekly Writing Group stream! Submit a little piece following the rules and guidelines below, and there’s a chance your entry will be read live on stream! In addition, we’ll discuss it for a minute and give you some feedback.

Tune into the stream this Friday at 7:00pm to see if you made the cut!

The whole purpose of this is to show off the creativity of the community, while also helping each other to become better writers. Lean into that spirit, and get ready to help each other improve their confidence in their writing, as well as their skill with their craft!

Rules and Guidelines

  • English only.
  • Prose only, no poetry or song lyrics.
  • One submission per participant.
  • Use proper spelling, grammar, and syntax.
  • Submit your entry in a comment on this post.
  • You must leave a review on two other submission to be eligible, and your reviews must be at least 50 words long.
  • No more than 300 words (you can use this website to see your wordcount).
  • Include a story title and an author name (doesn’t have to be your real name).
  • Keep submissions “safe-for-work”; be sparing with sexuality, violence, and profanity.
  • Try to focus on making your submission a single meaningful moment rather than an entire story.
  • Understand that by submitting here, you are giving us permission to read your submission live on stream and share it on our social media sites. You will always be credited as the author.
  • Comments on this post that aren’t submission will be deleted, except for replies/reviews left on existing entries

Example Submission

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Seidmadr TalesKestrelStephanie TraceskiZachial AdamsJack Lightfoot Recent comment authors
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Jack Lightfoot
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Jack Lightfoot

MY DAD, CTHULHU
(From Madness Hattzer)

My dad tells the best stories just before I go to bed
Of mankind’s doom, looming ever so closely overhead
My dad makes great food and I do love it when he bakes
And all descends to madness in the morning when he wakes

My dad’s great at ball games and he plays with me each day
There’s so much space to throw in the deep City of R’lyeh
My dad gives me ice cream and will hug me when I cry
He cheers me up by telling me that even death may die

My dad helps me study when the schoolwork is a pain
And if the teacher’s nasty he will send them quite insane
My dad is the best dad and there is no point in argu’in’
He tucks me into bed and says, “Goodnight, have sweet fhtagns.”

Zachial Adams
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Zachial Adams

Nib’shuggurath Family Values

You can pick your friends, but you can’t unsummon your family.
Truth be told I don’t mind my parents. They can be a little hard to understand sometimes, but they try their best. Mom has the whole PTA in the palm of her hand. And Dad’s contracts keep us well fed and wanting for nothing.
I think our neighbors might be wary of us though. We get some noise complaints from people on family game night. Nothing serious, just a few officers asking where the otherworldly screaming and deafening incantations are coming from. Usually Mom can fend them off, but if she ever needs some help Dad’s got several thousand wicked tongues.
They’ve always got my back too, all the other kids wish they had a family like ours. (Dad says they wish anyway, he’d know) And coming home to the smell of unknowable horrors in the kitchen makes the whole day worth it.
Yeah, I don’t mind my parents. I love them, incomprehensible limbs, omnipresent teeth, and infinitely piercing staring eyes and all.
But I do hope they put the sun back soon.

Stephanie Traceski
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Stephanie Traceski

Inheritance
(Whisper James)

My father’s presents have always been so thoughtful.

For my fifth birthday it was a simple necklace-a gem that glittered with the color of the deepest sea set in gold. He gave me a telescope for my eighth. We spent night after night on the edge of the rocky shore looking up at the sky while he told me stories of what lies in the blackness between the stars. A set of handmade watercolor paints-shades of rust and ashen earth-made my fifteenth birthday worthwhile.

Now, on the eve of my eighteenth year, I find myself breathlessly staring at the elegantly carved throne in front of me. Its stone back arches with the bow of the crescent moon while a swirl of hand etched symbols sweeps down armrests like waves. With shaking fingers I trace the jagged lines and curves, reciting each ancient quietly until they make up a verse I recognize as my father’s song.

I feel him behind me, towering-looming like an impossible shadow that fills the space between the pillars. He’s waiting with the endless patience he learned from his time in the deep, unphased by the ticking of the clock while my heart pounds harder with each second.

He’s given me a choice and that gift is not lost on me. The longer I look the more I realize that the greater of his presents is the chance to choose.

Memories slip through my mind of the sand and the sun and the brush of saltgrass against my palms. I can hear the laughter of friends; see the smiling faces of the people in town that I have loved.

I meet his eye as I slowly lower myself into the seat of the throne.

He’s given me what none of them ever could: the world.

Kestrel
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Kestrel

DARK YOUNG
(by K.S.D)

My playthings are strange in how they treat my mother, with their robes and offerings deep in the wood in the dead of night. I lurk in the darkness, taking in their rituals the way they do a movie. It’s entertainment, in a way. Watching them with their chants and their dances, thinking it will somehow appease her is almost comedic. As if the worship of a few scrawny humans would be enough to appease her appetites. They turn to me sometimes, when they try to gain special approval from her. They call me one of her “dark young”, a term used with the utmost respect. They treat me as a deity, as though I’m some direct line to her. I take their gifts without complaint. They don’t know that I am but my mother’s spawn, not her agent. I can’t tell them in words they’ll understand, and even if I could, how would I tell my playthings that worshipping one of their god’s young is like offering libations to a single infant spider sprung forth from an egg sac of thousands? My mother loves me, as she loves all of her young, but there is nothing beyond that in her affections. She provides for her children though, after all, it was she who sent me to the cult. Children need toys, and my playthings pacify me for the time being. They have many names for my mother. The Black Goat, Shub-Niggurath, I hear them shouted to the night sky in their incantations. Sometimes she comes to them, and my pull to her strengthens. Sometimes she notices me and ceases her wanderings for just a moment. She commends the care of my playthings, of the life I’ve carved out for myself. Then slowly, carefully, my mother stalks into the night.

Seidmadr Tales
Guest
Seidmadr Tales

Awakening
by Seidmadr Tales

A subtle tugging attempts to pull me from our dreams. Visions of the twin orange moons over a tropical landscape I am too young to stand on begin to ripple. My vision adjusts from our collective slumber to the watery depths of my nursery. Around me, I see thousands of my siblings still enjoying their sleep, and below them a massive darkness that could be mistaken for a cast-free shadow by lesser creatures, but a form I recognize as Cthulhu, my primagen.

I am told that one night I will resemble him in both size and form. Eons from now I will fall into a sleep-like metamorphosis the rest of my body will form and my fringe-like fins will become wings heralding my future inheritance. For now, I am a brain-sized pod that is only a master of the ocean, or at least I like to think so.

Vibrating my fins, I swim closer to the surface to view the constellations from here. They’re arranged differently than the ones from the dream, but I can pick out a few familiar stars based on their chimes. Along with the chimes, I can hear a voice singing out in distance. Is it the moon? I’ve never heard a moon’s voice and I’ve only seen a single moon here. It is pale white and on other nights it’s often not full.

The voice is beautiful but hypnotic. I head back to my clutch before it completely entrances me. I look around one last time to see if any of my siblings have awoken in my absence, but it appears I was alone in this experience. Settling in, I let the ocean gently rock me back to sleep, where I may dream once again with my family.

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