“He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
A Visit from St. Nicholas, Clement Clark Moore.
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples, how merry!
And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.”
Alternative names: Berchtold, Bokkenrijder, Nikamund the Red.
It never leaves me. Wherever I go, it follows me. Always watching. Always staring. At the office. At the park. Standing over my bed at night, those giant black eyes just inches from my face. I scream at it to do something, to kill me. It does nothing. I put my hands around its throat, trying to pull its bulbous head from its scrawny, skeletal body. It doesn’t even fight back. Just dies, staring me in the eyes the whole time. But it’s not over. It’s never over. I kill it, and there are two more a couple of days later.
Alternative names: Those That Watch.
Through the graveyard, frantic digging could be heard. The ground shifted. Dozens of headstones fell, many into the pits that opened where once lay burial plots. We saw the skulls, then shoulders bones and rib cages push their way out of the stinking mud. Something was wearing the bones of people. Long, segmented legs hung between rib cages. A curled abdomen curled where the pelvic bones and legs once were. From the back sprouted gossamer wings. The creature chittered and clicked to one another, then flew into the night.
Alternative names: Corpse Flies
Master Rirhi first appeared to bear witness and give testimony to the initiates in 1893. When he next imparted his wisdom to the initiates, this time in 1921, he appeared as he had decades before. No new line or spot marred his face. His alabaster hair had lost none of its lusters. Same for his eyes, brilliant azure, reflecting the infinite depths of his wisdom. The intervening years had not conspired to stoop him, no arthritis had entered his bones. His bearing was as regal and imperious as ever. The older initiates declared this was indeed a sign that his wisdom had lifted him up into divinity. From The All-Pervasive Teachings of Master Rirhi Unveiled, by Col. Raymond R. Cook (published 1930)
Alternative names: Ascended Masters, Chrononauts, Exalted Patrons, Secret Chiefs
We felt eyes on us for miles. We’d turn only to catch a glimpse of something slinking behind a tree. Later, I felt a tug on my collar. My shirt ripped as I spun. The leg or arm of a giant insect was curled around the tree, torn fabric held in its claws. Then it slithered back behind the tree. We ran.
Alternative names: Grabbers
It was something of a female figure, taller than any human, moving among the seeming infinite shelves of books. A finger traced the spines of the collected volumes, at the end of a misformed arm, segmented like that of an insect. A priest’s vestments hung from the being’s body. Across the gown were sigils I could not comprehend. Yet something inside of me roiled when I saw them. The creature floated as it moved. Sharp, thin feet, dozens of them, kicked from under the hem of the gown. I must have made some sort of noise. It turned toward me, a hiss coming from its skeletal face. It lifted a veil covering its eyes. The empty sockets began to glow.
Alternative names: Canonesses of the True Face, Sisters of the Throne.
Alternative names: Langford’s Rose, Xithxrar’s Face
It hurt the eyes just to look at the being. The air around it shimmered, like pavement on a hot summer day. There was no radiation, the scientists in charge assured us. The effect was due to thex being’s strange composition, they said. It was just a guess, though. They’d never been able to get a tissue sample. The colossal creature seemed to be made entirely of bone or something like it. Whatever it was, it’d proved too hard for the government’s tools to even chip. Immense chains binding it gave the illusion of security. No doubt if it awoke it would easily shrug them away. Even as it slept, it felt as though the being was reaching inside of our minds, weighing our sins, judging our worthiness.
Alternative names: Angels, Cleansers of the Earth, Fires of the Elder Gods.
We no more than set foot in the cave when it appeared. Some monstrous worm or insect, or something of both. The size of an elephant. Chittering, squelching, buzzing, the sounds of rage at our presence. It reared, teeth spinning in the circular mouth that opened in its head. Then came down two terrible claws. There was a sharp scream beside me, but it was short. Then I noticed one of the claws was slick red. The smell of copper and offal filled the air.
Alternative names: Keepers, Sentries of the Old Ones, Wardens.
I’m entering the cause of death for that family as “animal attack, unknown.” Thing is…and this has to stay between us…thing is, I know what killed them. But there’s no way I’m making it official. I’d lose my job and no other coroner’s office would ever hire me again. The evidence is undeniable. The fur samples we found around the farmhouse tell us what kind of animal did it. Bats. The bite marks on their bodies tell us. They look just like bats…except bigger. Bigger than any bat in existence.
Alternative names: Cave Devils, the Swarm.