Title: On The Nameless
Date: 1/5/2023
Notes: This short story is dedicated to Katie, our friend Simon Crow, the remaining living ancient oak trees on this archipelago and all living individuals whose lives are rebellions against the too-fucking-late-krapitalist Moloch that is the machinery of mass-extinction.

Simon’s Introduction

“We are fucked and that’s it.”

Unfucking ourselves could likely be no longer on the menu, and so figuring out how to live, how to be alive in these times becomes an opportunity to reclaim something feral, beautiful and forgotten (at least here in this benighted culture) from this midden heap we call civilization, which is seemingly so hellishly intent on suffocating itself with machine-faeces.

Langer’s short tale contains multitudes. For me it is a wyrdly moving, compelling absurdity. At times frenzied and cthonic, it made me ache with unknown longing, the sadness of recognition and a good measure of mirth. Take what you will from this story. I’d hope it calls to the forgotten, nameless parts of you that long to dance till dawn and sing to badgers and goats.

I’m off to weep tears and shed blood. Berxwedan Jiyane

Julian’s Introduction

This short story came from a desire for eco-absurdist folk- horror and an intense love for the living, along with too many examples of revolting ecocidal and specidal projects underway on this archipelago in the North Sea. Eco- absurdist horror, as I approach it, is grounded/earthed cosmic(-pessimist)-horror, with Lovecraft and John Henri Nolette both being direct inspirations for this project. I do not feel that I have to turn towards the extraterrestrial to comprehend the matters that horror and cosmic-pessimism approach. I experience an intense feeling of absurdity and unreasonableness from the position of standing upon that ground of Earth, which is more true to me than any system of logic, politics or belief. This feeling is something like what Robinson Jeffers called inhumanism and attempting to navigate this ecologically dark and ever changing terrain, attempting to embrace will-to-life/power, feels to me what John Moore called bewilderness – a psycho-geographic encounter of a strange space that is the world.

There is also something within this story of moving through an excluded middle space that is neither believing in victory nor defeat — a liminal space, which is not passive, but active- as-alive (rather than productive). How does anyone live in this horrifying space of neither believing in the glory of victory nor the sweet relief of defeat? All answers appear as absurd as the conditions that birthed them. It seems possible to experience great joys and sadness, rage and love, in this middle space that is neither victory nor defeat. It seems also a horrifyingly real space to live within – impossible and true. I say “seems” because I cannot speak for anyone else and, as I find myself navigating a psycho- geography of bewilderness, it is often hard to pinpoint exactly where I am – I know I feel horror, love, rage, sadness and joy though.

Finally, and this might be obvious to those familiar with the likes of Stirner and Novatore, the nameless is a creative- nothing, whose activities embody a lived individualist eco- anarchist praxis, without the trappings of ideology and movements. This is an intentional rejection of organisation, collectivity and the movements that typify mainstream environmentalism. With this radical-individualism, there is also an intense tribal appreciation for the experience of being-with others, as the presence of wildlife, within the character of the nameless. This is an intensely different praxis to the performative-egoism of the edgy-negativity- egoist – ecologically-embedded egoism, with the nothingness/no-Thingness being the-world and the creative being the-living; egoism as being alive in the world.

The Queen Camel Oak – Simon Crow – Soil – Tears – Blood – Departure

It began with the felling of The Queen Camel Oak, as it was named. An ancient oak tree that was felled by National Highways, as part of a road development project. The tree had been defended and occupied and fought for by many individuals, who put themselves between the tree and those who sought to fell it. But their efforts were unable to keep the fellers back. The tree was cut down and all that The Queen Camel Oak was was destroyed.

One of the individuals who had sought to defend the tree was Simon Crow. Crow is an ageing “eco-defender”, “earth-rebel”, or whatever you would describe him as (he’d laugh off any of the labels) who had at this point in his life seen far too many living individuals who he had sought to care for be culled, felled, killed or just die amidst the narratives of the death camp that is industrialised totalitarian agriculture. Crow had, despite his dislike of heights, sat in The Queen Camel Oak and sought to defend the tree until its last moments, giving him an intensely intimate relationship with the now felled tree. The felling left Crow with a bitter and rageful sorrow, a feeling of primal and visceral pain and fury, that burst out from him as a torrent of tears, which landed on the ground where the tree once stood. He collapsed to his knees and dug his hands into the soil until his hands bled and tears and blood both fell into the hole in the earth. After this Crow stood up and remained standing, until he walked on from the wretched scene and made his way to the world away from where he was.

Toutatis – Fire – An Entity

When Crow had left and the only humans close to the hole were those driving in their cars on the nearby road, who could not see the space, for the darkness of night rendered it unknowable to them, a strange occurrence happened. What occurred was an event that most who you told would not believe, but this doesn’t matter – if an event occurs it doesn’t matter who believes it did or did not, as that doesn’t change the truth on the matter. Suddenly the hole grew deeper and from Crow’s mixture of soil, blood and tears, a being was summoned. This being, who goes by the name Toutatis – or at least did a great many years ago – stood looking god-like. Toutatis is not a god though, but is far more like a guardian of the wild living world, who slumbers under the soil until called. After surveying the scene, Toutatis approached the felled wood and set it alight. The flames burned brilliant lights of all colours imaginable and some unimaginable, producing crackling and snapping music from the changing wood. Then, from the colours, heat and strange music an entity was born to that dark night. This entity, whose body appeared to be in constant metamorphosis, utterly defied description – at best, they could be said to be like solid liquid, more animal than plant or mineral, but then perhaps not. Toutatis watched this new creation as they came to be in the world, with a feeling of strange love and respect. When this creature – if they could really be called a creature – came to notice Toutatis’ presence, Toutatis spoke.

Toutatis Speaks – The Nameless

“Well, here you are; and what a ruined place this has become. I remember when this was a forest that I could wander and never find the same space twice. Maybe you shall come to find yourself in a great forest here one day, if such a day is possible. I choose to dream that it may be possible, no matter how absurd it may be to do so. But that is not for now and now is where we are and will forever be. Now you must be confused as to why you are here, which is something often wondered by those of us who live in this world. I cannot give you any reason as to why you are here, as there is no reason I can fathom for here to be this. Earth has always been an unreasonable place to be, but this lifeless expanse of ruinated landscape seems a different unreasonableness – like the unreasonable logic of revolting reasoning, seeking to justify some suicidal endeavour. Why are you here? It does not matter. What matters is that you are here, alive. The real question is what are you to do now – do you embrace this life that you are now, or renounce it, as many of those who live upon these islands do today? This is not a question I can answer, for the choice is yours and always will be, which is why you are always free, so long as you are alive. The question I can give an answer to is that of what you are. You are a shapeshifter, a being who can will their form as they wish and to suit their need. As this is what you are, I shall offer you this advice and encourage you to take it with you as you venture out upon this archipelago. Take no name and embrace no identity. Be nameless. If you are nameless then you are in a better position to evade capture, by being unknowable.”

The Dark – The Morning – A Crow

After saying this Toutatis disappeared into the night, leaving the nameless to the dark, the remaining embers, ash and the desolation that they had been born to. It is a harsh birth to be born to annihilation, but for those born today this is their birth. The nameless remained in that spot until the morning, filled with uncertainty and a sense of responsibility towards their desire to live and for life. With morning’s light, the nameless came to experience an adventurous curiosity and fear at the prospect of being seen by those who had felled the tree they once were. Spotting a murder of crows close by, they took the form of a crow and took on in flight. Flying over the landscape, the nameless came to realise the ruination that Toutatis had spoken was greater than either of them knew.

A Gathering – Plans – Cars – A Fly

The nameless landed when they noticed a gathering in a village not too far from where they were birthed. This gathering was of many of those who had sought to defend The Queen Camel Oak from those who felled the ancient tree – though Crow was not there.

The nameless got as close to the gathering as they could in crow form, listening to the discussions that were underway and the plans being made. It became clear that, as a response to the felling of The Queen Camel Oak, a protest of some sorts was being planned outside the National Highways building in Birmingham. The plan was that individuals would group together outside the building, chant, hold signs, make speeches and seek the attention of local media outlets.

Out of a curious interest, the nameless decided to follow those planning to travel to Birmingham to their cars, quickly becoming a fly to sneak into the vehicle and hide away, where the other travellers wouldn’t see them.

The Journey – A Rat – Birmingham – Protest

The journey via car was a horrific ordeal, which the nameless thoroughly regretted, feeling worse for wear after several hours in the mass-extinction-machine. When they arrived, the nameless escaped from the car and quickly became a rat and scurried to a small nook where they could hide. A sudden feeling of revolt struck them, when they quickly came to realise that the stench of industrialism was thick on the air, which felt barely breathable – the car became a less horrifying experience when compared to this one, in the same way that worse-abuse makes less-worse abuse feel more desirable (forgetting that it is still abuse).

The others who had arrived, who were far less bothered by the journey or the air quality (as they had largely gotten used to them both, after years of normalising them), were quickly getting their plans into motion, writing messages of disapproval on cardboard, chanting chants that they had spent their travelling experience making up and live streaming the affair on various social media platforms, through their smartphones. This went on for several hours. They shouted some angry words at some employees of National Highways and got retweeted by a minor celebrity, but failed to get any press attention. Many who attended expressed that they were pleased with how the day had gone, while others, who seemed far more committed to the action (in the eyes of the nameless), stated that they were going to travel, via train, to London to be part of some larger discussion and action to protect the environment.

A Fly – A Spider

In order to travel with those journeying to London, the nameless took the form of a fly again, landing on the bag of one of the travellers, then became a money spider and snuck inside the bag – keeping close to the opening, but hidden from view. The journey in the bag, across the city of Birmingham and then to London, via train, was no better than the car journey they had undertaken, with the noise of the trains being particularly distressing. Scurrying away from their travelling companions, the nameless thought to themselves that they’d never again endure the like of it again, as neither train nor car had felt anything less than hellish.

A Pigeon – London – Extinction Rebellion

Taking on the appearance of a pigeon, the nameless followed the individuals from the air, to the London base for an organisation that was given the name Extinction Rebellion. Perched above one of the windows and returning to the same spot for several days, the nameless listened to many discussions and debates and arguments and meetings and votes and delegations and conversations, not just on the felling of The Queen Camel Oak, but also on plans to stop global warming – as if these individuals could control the earth and control the climate, or were members of a culture that could do so. After several days of returning to the spot and listening more and more, the nameless came to feel as revolted by the seemingly empty talk of the group as they did by the stink of the city, which felt as hostile to life as it could be. Some of the more passionate members of this organisation would speak of green-revolution and others, who saw themselves as the more committed revolutionaries, threw around phrases like “decisive ecological warfare”, but the instinct of the nameless was that these were largely empty words – the nameless initially wondered why they needed a revolution to rebel against the annihilation of life, until they concluded that there was no reason for these individuals to wait for a revolution; realising that they simply lacked integrity.

Hinkley Point C

There was one conversation that particularly caught the attention of the nameless – a conversation on something named Hinkley Point C.

The conversation that the nameless heard, regarding Hinkley Point C, was not initially about Hinkley Point C. Earlier in the year a state called Russia had invaded a state it neighboured, called Ukraine, which had begun something of an international crisis. Russia had previously attempted an experiment called Communism, with its own empire. During this period of history there was a disaster at a nuclear power plant in an area of Ukraine called Chernobyl, which was part of the Russian-Communist empire. The war that was still waging had brought attention back to the dangers that the nuclear power plant poses. Hinkley Point C was a nuclear power plant under construction in an area of the archipelago called Somerset, which was the subject of a great deal of protest in previous years. Thinking about the risks the Chernobyl power plant was posing, decades after the disaster, had retriggered anxieties about the risks the Hinkley Point C plant would pose after construction in the minds of those the nameless was listening to. Despite their fears, the individuals conversing had no will-to-challenge the site so far into construction, which rendered the nameless experiencing a visceral revolt and will-to-destroy.

A Peregrine – West Somerset – A Bear

Having no desire to return to either a train or a car, the nameless became a peregrine and flew to West Somerset, following the roads that scar the surface of the landscape. It was a bitter journey, though far better than the previous two. Witnessing the scale of industrialisation, totalitarian agriculture and ruination from the sky, fuelled the fires of revolt in the nameless. When they landed on the edge of the construction site the intensity of the wild fire that burned within their being was an inferno blazing fiercely. Their eyes, still in the form of a falcon, had the quality of lightning, like something from the sky powerfully arriving to the ground. Not knowing the inner-workings of a nuclear power facility, they didn’t exactly have a plan – all the nameless knew was that their desires were oriented towards destruction. Taking the form of a rat again, they scurried in to the construction site, doing all they could to avoid being noticed by anyone there. Once they nearly were found, but they soon found a nook to hide away in until the site was quieter. When activity had died down and the nameless felt safe to do so, they exited their nook and shifted into the form of a brown bear, the like of which were culled to extinction several hundred years ago on this archipelago. This form was born from wild and primal energy coursing through their being.

Destruction – A Roar – A Peregrine – Absurdity

After a momentary stillness to survey the scene, the destruction began. Any equipment that they had the strength to topple was toppled. Anything that could be broken by their bear hands was broken by their bear hands. The nameless suffered pains as breaking equipment collided with their body. They tore wiring and were burnt, but this only encouraged them further. They would have kept on going all night, but then suddenly there were men. It was a moment of utter confusion, as the men stood before this gigantic bear. In this moment, the nameless took an opportunity to push them back and give out a mighty roar, becoming a peregrine again and flying off into the night, leaving the men perplexed and utterly disoriented standing about the wreckage. They questioned how a bear got there, where the bear went, how they would explain the situation to their employers and how quickly they would find new jobs after being fired for the sheer absurdity of their explanation.

A Cliff Edge – Hunting – Rest

After fleeing the site of Hinkley Point C and still in peregrine form, the nameless landed on the edge of a cliff at the north of Exmoor. Changing form had not lessened the pain from their attack on the nuclear facility and they felt burnt and bruised. The wind coming off from the Irish Sea felt like a kind touch upon their wings and they noticed that they felt ravenously hungry. Trusting to instinct and after sitting a while longer to rest, they took to flight and went in search of food. Dehabitation, loss of foods, pesticides and culls meant there were far fewer birds that they instinctually felt drawn to eat, in their peregrine body. With a little luck on their side, they hunted a tern and ate all they could. They then rested again for the rest of the day and through the night.

Morning – HS2 – A Badger – Days and Nights Collapse – Escape

The next morning, after having a starling breakfast, the nameless took flight again; not knowing where to go. After several hours of flight, they saw the construction of a large tunnel underway. They didn’t know that the tunnel was part of a high speed rail project, known as HS2, which had been the subject of a great deal of debate and protest and they didn’t need to. The desolation surrounding the construction site filled their being with a fury that would never have accepted any reasoning used to justify what they could see. Integrity compelled them to land close to the site and find a way to seek revenge. The nameless became a badger and, again, trusting to instinct started to dig. They dug and they dug and they dug under the construction site for days and nights, stopping only to rest and eat. There was no way of knowing if this activity would amount to much and it would be sheer absurdity to anyone who was told of what the nameless was doing. But eventually, the weight of the tunnel being built above brought it down, into the earth the nameless had dug out. If it hadn’t been for the luck of being close to the opening of the sett that they had dug out, the nameless would have been caught underneath what they had brought low. As they ran out, they were seen by some of the construction workers who (correctly) decided that the collapse was their fault and took to trying to catch and kill the badger before them. Disappearing into the dark momentarily, taking the form of an owl and flying off, the nameless managed to escape into the night. As they flew away they heard two of the construction workers speaking.

The first one said “fucking vermin badger, I hope the cull kills the fucking lot of you,” while the other one wondered where the owl had come from.

The Cull – Night – Badgers – Attack

The words of the construction worker stayed with the nameless as they flew off and remained with them when they landed in woods many many miles west to where they had been – further west than they had ever been. What was this Thing that was called a cull? Why was the cull killing badgers? They knew that they didn’t trust this Thing, given how the construction worker had shouted about it at them.

The next night they flew off in search of this cull, feeding on mice as they travelled through the dark. Their eyes were primed for the dark and it wasn’t long before they could see badgers playing and adventuring across fields and on the edge of woods. It was a wonderful sight to see. It would have remained wonderful to witness the badgers from the air, had it not been for what they saw a short distance away from a village on Exmoor. A group of men with guns had baited the edge of a field besides a wood and were attempting to shoot the badgers in the dark. Without a moment’s hesitation, the nameless swooped down and attacked the shooters, to defend the badgers and give them a chance to escape. The men had no idea what was going on and were utterly confused. It is a very rare occurrence for an owl to attack a human, particularly if the humans are not threatening them. The shooters ran off in fear and confusion and the nameless returned to their flight. They did not fly for long.

A Badger – A Man – A Death Smashing Traps

A short distance away from where they had attacked the shooters, the nameless found a badger by the edge of a copse, trapped in a cage. This frightened creature had been trapped for several days, with no one checking the trap to see if they’d caught anything, had been hurt by the cage as it trapped them inside and were dying. Taking the form of a gigantic, bear-like man, the nameless opened up the cage, to let the badger out. But they did not have the energy to leave. They lay there exhausted, dying. It was a fiercely hot summer, as industrial-totalitarian-agriculture had birthed that monstrous being called global warming – the one Extinction Rebellion had spoken of ending. The cull hadn’t even officially started yet, but this did not stop those who sought the annihilation of badgers starting early, with legal protections being nought but words written on paper.

For the rest of the night the nameless remained with the creature as they died. Watching the wretched death rendered the nameless’ fury wilder than it had ever been; and, still in the form of a gigantic and naked man, they tasked themselves with searching for more traps in the surrounding area, before civilised humanity arose from their beds, flattening all the traps they found.

The Farmer

At dawn, close to a farm that was heavily involved in cull activity, the nameless was found by the farmer, who had heard the sound of his traps collapsing in his waking moments. For several seconds neither of them knew what to do. The farmer stood there unable to take his eyes off of the colossal man who stood before him naked, covered in scratches, cuts and bruises, hair long and matted, not even attempting to hide his genitals (as the nameless had not been taught to be ashamed of their genitals). The nameless stood and planned their escape from the situation. As the nameless stepped forward the farmer stepped back. Then, in one single unreasonable motion, the farmer was picked up and thrown to the ground. As the farmer attempted to stand back up, the nameless became a peregrine again and took flight, which shocked the farmer so much that they fell back on their arse again. What he witnessed was sheer madness and when he told his family what had happened he was called mad, after the family stopped thinking that he was having them on. Unable to go about his work for the shock, the farmer resigned himself to a part of the farm away from his family to think over what had happened over and over again, trying to convince himself that it had not happened – increasing his family’s worry over how disturbed he’d become.

Land’s End – Freedom

While the farmer was attempting to sleep that night, still going over the strange encounter in his mind, the nameless was resting at the most westerly point they could reach, the cliffs at Land’s End. The rocks they were perched on in peregrine form formed 270 million year ago, during a geological era called The Permian Period, when a truly catastrophic mass extinction event occurred. Thoroughly inhuman and more powerful than any man, the cliffs felt strong, stable, secure and safe, even with the ocean colliding against them below. There they remained for several weeks, only venturing away from the cliff’s edge to hunt and feed. Often their mind would turn to the badger that they had been with while dying. Remembering the caged and captured creature filled the nameless with an appreciation for the feeling of freedom they were experiencing amidst those cliffs. Eventually though, they ventured east, along the south coast, remaining in the liminal space between the sea and land.

A Mine – Absurdity – Attack

They travelled until a storm sent them further into the land. From the air the nameless could see lithium mining underway, which was revolting to their eyes. At this point, after having attacked a few industrial projects that were manufacturing death and desolation, a feeling of pointlessness was becoming increasingly true for them. Yes, in that moment their destruction was having an affect, but it was becoming more and more apparent, as they travelled across the island from the sky, that what they were doing was not stopping industry’s violence. Despite the absurdity, their integrity brought the nameless to land besides the mineral exploration drill rig and, again in the form of a bear, topple the machinery over, before any of the workers had a chance to stop them; becoming a peregrine again moments later and flying towards the north east. Like the construction workers at Hinkley Point C and HS2, and the farmer the nameless had thrown, the workers employed by Cornish Lithium were utterly bewildered, confused, shocked and amazed. Wondering what had happened, as what had really happened was not possible, they attempted to construct reasons for the destroyed equipment that their employers would approve of.

Lundy – Affirmation

After fleeing the scene, the nameless flew north easterly, until they reached the island of Lundy, a short distance away from the North Devon coast. When they landed they took the form of a bear like man again, wandering upon the island naked and keeping far away from the few humans who were also there. Again, the wind felt like a kind touch and the sun was welcome on their skin. The singing robins and starlings were thoroughly beautiful to the nameless and the goats, rabbits and feral sika deer they could see were gorgeous to watch throughout the day. A feeling of joyful pleasure filled the nameless and they experienced an intense feeling of life affirmation. All the pain and rage and sorrow that they had experienced through their travels were worth it, for the joy of this day, this moment. The past didn’t exist and the future would never arrive. Timeless nowever and an absurdly mad amor fati was an invincible truth. Filled with this happiness, the nameless fell asleep under a beech tree, where they slept for the rest of the day, through the night and long into the morning.

A Dream – The Child – Exile

As they slept they had uneasy dreams, full of worrisome visions. When they woke they were glad for the daylight. After a minute or so, they came to realise the presence of a small child who had found them and was watching them sleep. The nameless stood and the child did not move. There was an unspoken mutual feeling of confusion as to why the other was there, as well as mutual feelings of acceptance and affirmation of the other. The nameless picked up the child, in the same way that a parent would carry their child, and walked out from where they were. A few moments later the child’s father, who had gone to see where they’d gotten to, could be heard shouting in a fury, out of fear for the individual holding their child. The father ordered the nameless to put the child down and threatened violence if they did not. It did not take long for a crowd of the visitors to the island to form and many were attempting to drive the nameless away, throwing whatever they could find at the being who was in the form of a gigantic naked hairy man. Full of sadness, the nameless ran to the edge of the island and jumped into the cold waters of the sea, becoming a seal under the water and swimming away as fast as they could to the other side of the island, where they sat on a rock and pondered their sadness. The group of visitors watched the sea for the man to arise to the surface and when he did not called the lifeguard team, some feeling guilt for driving him away and others, who had assumed the nameless was some kind of sexual predator and out to harm the child, feeling glad for the possibility that they’d died.

A Storm

Sat on their rock at the edge of Lundy Island, in seal form, the nameless sat and thought about the wretchedness and desolation they had witnessed, of the sheer absurdity and unreasonableness of the world, and of how much love they felt for the living. As they thought about this, they saw a storm approaching from the north, getting closer and closer, until it was upon the island. Thunder boomed and the winds were not a kind touch, but the kind that would throw you to the ground if you’d let them. The sky was darkened with cloud cover and any human who looked up for too long would quickly be unable to see, for the rain in their eyes. The nameless felt alive and full of a wild and primal energy that excited the blood in their veins. The world felt alive and it was clear that it was living passionately. They dived into the water and swam all day, with the storm raging above the sea, in a north easterly direction, coming to shore on the Cumbrian coast.

Searching – Toutatis

Becoming a fox on the sands of a secluded beach, the nameless found a spot in the dunes to rest and sleep. In the morning they ate a little out of a rubbish bag they found besides a shop at the edge of the beach, before running off and away from the town, in search. Not searching for anything in particular that they knew of, but just searching. There was a call they were hearing and they were searching for the source of the sound, whatever it might be. This took several days and as they searched they did not change from the form of a fox. Through woods and along the edges of lakes and mountains, they wandered through the landscape, often stealing food from campers or bins, when they could. They searched until they reached the base of the tallest mountain they had yet seen, where they met a dog fox, who they could sense was Toutatis – the nameless was a vixen. Toutatis turned tail and started to run up the mountain, with the nameless following. It had been Toutatis calling. They ran up and up the mountain, jumping from one rock to another and making great leaps across the stream that crossed their path. When they reached the highest plateau, Toutatis took the form of a man, as he had when they had previously met. The nameless took the form of a woman, with brown hair and olive skin. Before Toutatis could speak, the nameless had ran over to him and placed their hands on the entirety of his genitals. In one singular motion, the nameless ripped off his cock and balls, shoving all of them inside of herself. Toutatis fell dead in an instant. Then, from out of the vagina of the nameless, a gigantic tree emerged, the like of which had never been seen on earth before; and across the archipelago trees erupted out of the ground, through concrete, through buildings, levelling towns, cities, villages low. Most of the humans on the islands became bears, bats, wolves, foxes, badgers, all manner of birds, deer, goats, rats, mice, frogs and a great many other-than-human beings in an instant. Wild flowers spread across lawns and fields, feeding a great many insects. More and more metamorphic-ontogenesis/becoming occurred in that moment, leaving all of civilisation, domestication, colonisation, desolation and wretchedness, becoming wild life, primal anarchy. Amidst this process, the nameless became the gigantic tree they had birthed from the seed of Toutatis’ cock and balls.

Simon Crow

Somewhere on the island, much further south, Simon Crow had awoken to the strange becoming, finding himself surrounded by trees and wild beasts, in a state of bewilderness. There was no conceivable reason for any of this. Could he accept this unreasonableness? In that moment he felt horrified and alive. There was no tame safety, anywhere he could see. Any attempt to survive was utterly absurd, as eventually some wild creature would likely kill him. For a moment he wondered if it would be better to die now, be killed and eaten to avoid some potential suffering he might experience. In this deep and dark forest, the world felt terrifying beyond description. But, as well, Crow had an intense desire to venture out and explore this new terrain. Knowing it was an absurd choice to do so, he ventured off to explore the darkness between the trees, knowing that eventually he would find his death.


Several weeks later a drone flies over the rewilded archipelago filming, with the footage being used for a live news broadcast in the USA. As millions of US citizens watch in horror, the newscaster states “it is still impossible to say why this has occurred. Why did Britain and Ireland come to be this great uncivilised forest and what is going on under the trees, that our cameras cannot film? Scientists remain baffled and unable to provide any reason. The President, UN, European Union and other governments and institutions around the world have officially designated the archipelago in the North Sea quarantined and unsafe for humans, as all attempts to investigate the islands have resulted in none of those investigating returning. The questions on everyone’s mind that are perhaps most prominent are will the same happen where they live? The answers to those are unknowable, uncertain and horrific. The world is far darker than we thought. Life if wilder, untamed and it is clear that our governments and technologies cannot save...”. The newscaster could not finish their sentence, as their microphone was removed and they were pulled away from their seat. Another journalist sat in their seat and clipped a microphone to their shirt. They then say “the network would like to apologies for the words of my colleague and I would like to say, as we all believe here, that God has a plan for us and that plan is for the United States of America to manifest its beautiful destiny, where all men can bask in God’s glory.” A woman watching the broadcast, somewhere on colonised Turtle Island, turns off her television and says to her partner “they haven’t got a fucking clue what they are talking about have they? We’re fucked and that’s it.” Their partner nods in agreement. She then says, with feelings of tiredness, apathy and ennui, “anything new on Amazon Prime?”.