Augen needed a vacation. An escape from the chaos happening around him at home in Baltimore. The threat on the suvians from the beasts and shadows from the Inmost, was becoming stronger by the day.
His beloved Elsie was visiting relatives in New York City, so Augen decided to meet her there. He knew they would not get much time together, but even if they could sneak in a romantic night out on the town, it would be worth it to him.
Augen had arrived via the Bolt bus a few hours ago and walked the streets with Elsie on his mind. They were scheduled to meet in a few hours. He passed bodega’s, souvenir shops, discount jewelry stores, small art galleries, smaller cafes, and varieties of street vendors. He took in all of these things, but they were secondary pleasantries that contributed to the anticipation of this evening. Elsie had been traveling for more than a year with her family. It was supposed to be a much shorter trip, but it extended longer due to complications. Elsie had come from a long line of vampires and it was necessary for them to return to their homeland of Constanța, Romania for reasons she did not want to go into. Although Augen would have loved to have join her on the trip, Elsie’s father still did not approve of their romance. He was lucky enough to no longer to be stalked and threatened by the family, but they were a long way away from being cordial with him. Her uncles avoided him and her father could not bring himself to acknowledge him directly. There had been progress though and Augen was patient.
Red neon poured out of a bay window he that he wandered by. It distracted him from these thoughts. The neon oval read “Psychic” and the sandwich board on the sidewalk advertised Palm Reading. In a moment of pure impulse and curiosity, he walk toward the entrance, but then turned back around toward the street in dismay. What fortune could be told from these hands of his? He looked down at them and although most people that would look at him would see a middle aged man in shorts and a T-shirt, he was able to see through the mental hologram he created and see the real Augen - his blue skin and his tentacled arms. What would that reveal? Could it even reveal anything at all?
“Let me help you.” Came a voice from behind him. He turned and saw a pleasant woman with dark hair. “Come in.” She beckoned and reached for his hand.
Augen hesitated, but did not resist. He was led to a small table and she sat opposite him. “Let me see your hands.” she said with a smile.
“I don’t think there’s much to see.” Augen said. A sadness came through in his voice. He wanted to know about the outcome of the growing tension between the suvians and hateful beasts that were threatening the suvian, but he also wanted to know about Elsie and her family. Would he ever be given a chance or would their love be wrought with conflict and distress.
She took his hands and turned them both with their plans upward. She ran her fingers here and there - intently following pathways he could not see. Her facial expression revealed that she was having some difficulty with something. Perhaps trying to process information into a correct translation. She took his hands and folded them together so his palms were touching and both inside her hands, and then she looked at him. Her gaze seemed to fall beyond his eyes. It went deep. Augen knew that she knew he was not human. She saw him and had seen him from the very beginning when he was outside. When she had not asked him what hand he favored, he suspected something, but now he knew. Few hands had this gift. To see beyond the illusion the suvians could create and she was one.
“What I see is difficult to say.” She said with a comforting and pleasant expression. “You have difficulty ahead…”
She closed her eyes momentarily and then returned his gaze. He had not let her finish. “If I tell you what I see, it will not help you, but let me say this.” She paused and chose her words. “Trust yourself. Do not let doubt take hold.” She opened his hands and pointed to lines that split and intersected with other lines. “Your struggles ahead are great. Keep love in your heart; whatever happens.”
Augen did not like hearing any of this, but felt good that she had seen some kind of hope ahead as long as he trusted himself and asked out of love.
“But!” She said holding up a finger. “Having said that, I will tell you this as well. You should know that following your heart and acting out of love are two different things.”
Augen seemed more confused and she could see this.
“One piece of advise.” She offered and Augen nodded for her to continue. “I do not normally do this but, change your plans tonight. Be alone and go back home tomorrow.”
Augen thanked her and paid her ten dollars instead of the five that was on the sign. He left the shop and it began to rain. Seemingly out of nowhere, an umbrella vendor appeared shouting “Five dollar umbrellas” and the smell of rain began to momentarily overtake the sells of gyro and urine that had been so strong second earlier. Augen bought an umbrella and began walking. Not sure it he should head to were he was supposed to meet Elsie or if he should follow the psychic’s advise. It felt like he was struggling inside to turn left or turn right at an imaginary intersection that was quickly approaching. Stay and see Elsie - Left. Don’t see her and go home tomorrow - Right. Left, I will go left. That’s what I’ll do. I love her and miss her. No. Right. I should listen to the psychic. Yeah, I should do that, but I feel anxious and stressed thinking of that option. Go with my gut. What does my gut say?
A text message came in and it was Elsie. “So excited to see you. I miss you. Thank you for coming up.”
Augen stood still in the rain under his new umbrella with colliding and conflicting thoughts in his head all vying for top position. Minutes passed. He knew she had seen that he had read her message.
“Me too! I love you. See you soon.” He typed and couldn’t hit send. He hesitated. Deleted the text and typed. “I love you, but I am so sorry. Something came up. I won’t be able to see you tonight. So so sorry. Let’s talk tomorrow and I’ll explain.” He hit send and muted his phone. He stood and thought of where Right might lead him.
Adrian Cox was born in Georgia in 1988, and after a few stops on the way, he made his way to where he currently lives - Los Angeles, California. Cox’s style began early in his career as an artist and has remained. His work consists of a mythos and narrative derived from his desire to express the connection between humans and the environment we live in. Boarder Creatures consist of a changing composition of the organs and individual material we are made of. These beings live in the Borderlands, but do not live there alone. As his work has evolved - so has the narrative that takes place in his paintings. The painting I highlighted, “Amniotic Paradise”, depicts a typical scene you may find in his paintings although his current work has focused more on themes of harmony and peace and no so much grim and somber scenarios. There are many interviews out there and loads of information available on Adrian. I urge you to visit the sites below and learn more about him and his beautiful paintings.
As of October 2016, I intend to use this blog as an accompaniment to my Facebook page and Instagram page. On this blog I will post information and updates about my work as well as once a month I will highlight an artist whose work I like. Additionally, as of March 2017, I began posting a monthly Story Entry with an accompanying illustration of mine.