Monday’s Bizarre New Conference
This Monday President Trump held a press conference on his coronavirus response efforts. The event came to an abrupt end when he spoke in tongues, bent over backwards, and spider walked through the Rose Garden.
The first sign something was off came when the president was asked to address test shortages.
“As far as Americans getting a test they should all be able to get a test. They might not be thrilled about the dark passenger behind their eyelids, but they’ll get a test.”
The President was asked if there was a double standard, since White House Staffers could get tested, while normal Americans could not.
“If we didn’t get the tests you’d be up here complaining. I understand you very well. Better than you understand yourself. We children of Belial hear whispers in the ether and yours come through quiet clear. As meek as your internal monologue is, buddy, the angel of lawlessness hears it.”
Reporters were struck by how incoherent and yet articulate the president had become.
Trump was then pressed to elaborate on a tweet accusing former President Obama of the “Biggest political crime in American history.”
“What crime do you believe Obama of committing and do you believe the justice department should prosecute him?”
“Obamagate. You know what the crime is. The crime is obvious to everybody. He sat at Empusa’s table and failed to make a blood offering. Now it’s on us to pick up his tab.”
From there the President’s statements got weirder.
Weijia Jiang of CBS News asked why Trump was bragging about the amount of testing in the US. “Why is this a global competition to you if every day Americans are still losing their lives and we’re still seeing more cases every day?”
The president flared his nostrils. “That’s a nasty question. Don’t ask me that question, ask Mesopotamia that question and when you ask them that question I’ll bet they’ll tell you all about the wrath of Erra. The tower of Babel was battered in blood long before it fell. Believe me.”
“Excuse me? The wrath of who?”
“Can you blame a death god for getting bored when he sees dust upon his swords?”
“What swords? What are talking about?”
President Trump bit his lip. “When his tall shadow stands over your pillow and you feel his weight upon your chest, you’ll know.”
Weijia Jiang’s demeanor shifted. “Mr. President? Do you need us to flag one of the doctors down for you?”
That’s when the president’s eyes rolled into the back of his head and his face went flush. “The dragon has risen. You failed to see the scales for the land. We are but worms writhing on hungry tongues. Soon the hydra will swallow us all!”
The press core heard an audible crack and then the president bent over backward and spat blood across the grass.
A Discovery of Witches in the West Wing
This Thursday, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany offered an explanation for the bizarre conference. The president was being puppeteered by Satan himself.
“We have reason to believe the devil has been squatting in the Emergency Operations Center. Last Tuesday military personnel noticed a black mold growing in the Reagan tunnels. A closer examination revealed a walled off room where something had been nesting.”
Kayleigh McEnany clicked a remote. A dilapidated room came over the projection screen .
Mold arched over the ceiling like the vaulted roof of a gothic cathedral. The cinderblocks were exposed and eroded down to sand. The floor was littered with paint chips.
Each piece of furniture was an antique, likely pilfered from the White House itself. Everything was arranged in a circle and every surface was covered in candles. The wax runoff streaked to the floor like icicles in a frozen waterfall.
She clicked the remote.
“Military personal found a credenza fashioned into a makeshift altar. On it they found a poppet, more commonly referred to as a ‘spell doll.’ The doll was made from taglocks. These are personal items, which allowed the devil to use sympathetic magick on the president. The items included: a pair of platinum cufflinks, a lock of long blonde hair, a red 60-inch tie, and a custom sharpie pen.”
She clicked the remote.
“Not far from the altar was a cheval mirror laid flat on the floor. White House Spiritual Advisers believe the mirror was used for scrying. Scrying is a form of crystalmancy conjurers use to see victims from afar. We believe the devil used this to surveil the president.”
CBS news correspondent Weijia Jiang raised her hand. “How are you certain this was the work of the devil and not some other agent of evil?”
Kayleigh McEnany clicked the remote again but this time a video began.
The point of view came from a thermal imaging camera. It followed a set of hoofprints from the circle to the wall. There was a strange heat signature on one of the bricks, like a hand with long talons. The camera operator pressed it and a curious breeze whistled into the room. Then the wall spun open.
The camera operator stepped through the door, lost his footing, and fell back on the floor. His boots cast pebbles into the darkness before him. They rattled all the way down, echoing from an impossible depth. Then there was a faint wind tunnel hum with an undercurrent of whispering.
The camera operator tilted the lens. A set of glowing eyes came over the viewfinder. A horned figure, with a mangy collar, was holding onto the wall of the well. It gnashed its teeth, snorted, and charged at the camera.
“We tracked the hoofprints to a grimoire in the White House library. There we found an account of the Order of the Second Circle, a secret society comprised of our founding fathers. Apparently they held orgies in a lair beneath the Vermeil Room. Benjamin Franklin used sex magick to summon the devil and the devil has been down there ever since.”
Kayleigh McEnany clicked the remote. There was a picture of the president boarding Air Force One with toilet paper stuck to his shoe. “The devil has been using black magick to make the President look foolish and arrogant. Many of you may remember that President Trump was once a Pro-Choice Democrat who rebuked David Duke for being a bigot. Then the devil got his hooks him. The president started slurring his speech and muttering about subterranean cities made of bone. But not to fret.”
McEnany’s last slide featured the health officials responsible for guiding the country through the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We believe we’ve isolated the devil to this group of individuals.”
There’s an M. Night Shyamalan Situation in the Situation Room
In a sudden show of transparency reporters were presented with a live feed of the Situation Room. Health officials were seated around the conference table. They appeared to be scrutinizing one another.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, appeared to be building a barrier out of folders. Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control, gripped his name plate like a weapon. And Dr. Stephen Hahn, commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, was praying.
The lights flickered and the officials cowered behind their rolling chairs. I asked Mick Mulvaney, the White House Chief of Staff, if the devil had some sort of power over electromagnetic fields.
Mulvaney shook his head. “Oh no. We’re the ones cutting the lights.”
“So the devil has an opportunity to kill one of the health officials.”
“How would that help?”
“We believe that narrowing the suspects is the best way to isolate the target. They call it ‘the devil’s meal.’ We got the idea from that movie M. Night Shyamalan produced, but everyone thinks he directed.”
“Won’t sacrificing health officials have a broader impact on the American public?”
“That’s the wages of sin, I guess.”
The feed flickered and a face filled the screen. It had black sunken eyes. The bridge of its nose was an earthquake of frown lines. Its cheeks were high and sharp, and its fangs protruded from a Cheshire cat smile.
Mulvaney reached for the light switch. The feed flickered and the face disappeared.
And just like that there was a body on the conference table, arms and legs spread open, head twisted all the way around. All the health officials ran for a door that wouldn’t budge.
Mulvaney tapped the monitor. “See. It’s working.”
The Situation is Still Ongoing
At the time of this writing the devil is taking his time finishing his meal. The health officials are struggling, blaming one another for the bodies accumulating on the table. Mick Mulvaney keeps his hand on the light switch, ready to make another sacrifice.
As for the president, he’s in isolation while the White House waits for a team of exorcists to fly in from the Vatican.
But what about the American public, who are dealing with a sudden wave of beasts rising from chasms in the streets? Well. Whether we like it or not we’re all we’ve got.
This story will update as it develops.
3D Horns sculpt by patrakeevasveta
Photoshop by Drew Chial
Meet Noelle, a Hollywood transplant that’s been subsisting on instant ramen and false hope. She’s on the verge of moving back into her mother’s trailer when her agent convinces her to take a meeting at the Oralia Hotel. Enchanted by the art deco atmosphere Noelle signs a contract without reading the fine print.
Now she has one month to pen a novel sequestered in a fantasy suite where a hack writer claims he had an unholy encounter. With whom you ask? Well, he has many names: Louis Cypher, Bill Z. Bub, Kel Diablo. The Devil.
Noelle is skeptical, until she’s awoken by a shadow figure with a taste for souls.
Desperate to make it Noelle stays on, shifting the focus of her story to these encounters. Her investigations take her through the forth wall and back again until she’s blurred the line between reality and what’s written. Is there a Satanic conspiracy, is it a desperate author’s insanity, or something else entirely?