“I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE!”
Clyde screamed as he slammed his fists against the wall of his room.
‘Why is this happening? Everything was fine until Jimmy died. Now all I feel is pain. Everyone I care about one by one is being taken away for me! I just want them back... Jimmy, Bebe, Nichole, Token, Craig... all I have left is Tweek and my dad... and Tweek hasn’t left his house since he found out about Craig. At least my dad has been more comforting than his.... who tells their child to just get over it and keep working? When the person they love the most goes away...That crow was right to scratch his eye.’
Clyde then heard a knock on his door, “Clyde. It’s your dad. That book you ordered is here.”
Clyde smiled as he ran toward the door and opened it. He saw the book he had ordered at the bookshop in its package.
“Thanks dad! This will help me feel better!”
Mr Donovan looked at his son with concern, “Son, do you want to tell me anything... is that book for something?”
Clyde laughed, “Dad, no. It’s just something that mom used to read to me when I was sad. I lost the original copy and wanted to get a new one.”
Mr Donovan looked at Clyde sceptically, but left his son’s room.
Clyde turned away from the door and ripped open the packaging to see the book.
“The book of resurrection.... with this I will bring everyone back..... even mom.... I will be the master of the dead.. the dark lord! Hahahahaha!”
Craig, in his crow form, looked at Clyde through his open window.
‘Shit.... he’s lost it... he’s totally fucking lost it.... I gotta warn Kenny and Bebe.’
That night, Clyde escaped into the cemetery where all the graves of the missing and dead were. Clyde had brought incense and the book with him, as well as a few candles. He placed the candles on the gravestones of each of his friends. Finally, he placed a candle on his own mother’s grave.
Clyde lit the incense sticks and placed them all around him, along with a circle of ash. He opened the book to a random page and began to chant in the ancient language as best he could.
“I calleth upon thy souls and magics of old. I summon thee to grant mine will. Bring back what was stolen and returneth it to this plane. Mine candles shall be thy conduits for many a lost soul. I bringth them back to their home!”
The power began to swirl around him and shake the air.
Purple mist wrapped around him and formed a ball in front of him. It murmured to him. Clyde couldn’t hear it.
“What, can you repeat that?”
“I SAID SIT DOWN AND SHUT UP.”
Clyde immediately sat down.
The purple mist looked around. Clyde then started talking again.
“Errr, are you here to grant my request?”
The mist got right in his face then.
“WHAT DID YOU SAY?!”
Clyde swallowed, “I asked if you are granting my request.”
The mist was calm for a second, “Oh, okay then.”
The mist looked around at the candles. It seemed to turn black as it came back over to Clyde.
“YOU ARE NOT WORTHY! THE POWER YOU REQUEST IS TOO MUCH FOR SOMEONE SO INEXPERIENCED.”
Clyde grew mad then, “I summoned you so you will do as I say! I am the Dark Lord! I order you to bring my friends and family back!”
The mist was still for a second.
“DO YOU WANT AN OFFICE REFERRAL?!”
Clyde was very confused, “...what?”
The mist turned red and its voice changed into something demonic.
The mist entered his mouth and started to do something to him. Clyde felt himself floating in the air and unable to move. His eyes began to roll back and he cried tears of blood. He felt like he was boiling.
Clyde lost consciousness a second later.
Just before he did though, he swore he saw Bebe trying to cross the circle of ash to get to him, but she seemed to be hitting an invisible barrier.
Her eyes were wide in despair and Clyde wondered why she had a surgical mask over her face.
Some time later, Clyde opened his eyes again and took a deep breath. He still hurt all over.
Clyde saw that everything had been blown out. The book itself was just a pile of ash within the ash circle. Clyde carefully stood up, but felt his flesh tear as he tried. Falling back to the floor, he looked at his ankle, the bone was sticking out, and his flesh was oozing brown blood. Clyde panicked as he saw the flesh trying to decay in front of his eyes.
Clyde started to cry, “No no no no no... This wasn’t meant to happen!”
Clyde saw a figure walk in front of him. Its black bone wings and red tattoos immediately gave Clyde a dreadful feeling. The figure’s eyes looked sad, however.
“Clyde Donovan, my name is Kenny and I am a Shinigami. I am here to help you, the magic you summoned turned against you and if we don’t hurry, you will turn into ash and your soul will be gone forever. Please, come with me and maybe we can save you.”
Kenny then turned and yelled, “KYLE! I NEED YOUR HELP!”
At once, Clyde saw another figure running toward them. It had Kyle’s distinctive hair, but its face was that of a fox.
The fox Kyle turned to Clyde, seeing his decayed ankle, “Fuck dude! That is disgusting! I don’t want to see that!”
Kenny looked serious, however. His eyes told Kyle that, for once, this was no laughing matter, “Kyle, turn into a cart now! We don’t have time to argue, this is a serious situation. I’ll open a portal right into Damien’s lair. We don’t have time to walk the mountain path.”
As Kyle shifted, Kenny concentrated very hard. As he swung his scythe, he screamed. The portal was right near Damien, who jumped in surprise. The portal was trying to close, but Damien willed it to stay open.
Kenny then carefully placed Clyde on the cart and wheeled him through the portal.
Once through, Kenny collapsed in exhaustion.
Damien lifted Kenny and placed him on his throne to get his breath back. Kenny dropped his scythe, and it disappeared.
Damien then turned to Clyde who was still on the cart.
“Human... You have to be the most stupid being ever to not see what you did was dumb. Thank God Craig told me, Kenny, and Bebe what was happening. Giving us enough time to get to you before your soul was taken. You are not trained in the art of necromancy! I understand that you had good intentions, but to try and do that... you are both brave and idiotic.”
Clyde tried to sit up, but the bones in his arms snapped.
Damien sighed and walked over to him, “Clyde... I would normally be able to restore you completely but, as I don’t possess enough magic, I only have one choice. I can stop the decaying, but it will turn you into a Kyonshii, a Japanese hopping zombie. I can’t undo the damage you have done to your body, but I can save your soul and at least heal the bones you’ve snapped. The choice is yours.”
Clyde nodded weakly, “Pl...ple...please...”
Damien nodded and placed his hand on Clyde’s head. Clyde felt cold thanks to his metal hands, but suddenly, he felt warmth come out of them and it sent the burning pain away. Clyde sighed in relief.
Damien removed his hand and spoke calmly again, “The spell isn’t in full effect yet. You need to be buried for that to work. The natural energy in the soil will complete your transformation. I am sorry but there is no other way.”
Clyde smiled, “You did your best. You, Craig, Kenny, Kyle and... Bebe.”
Tears streamed down his face as he mentioned her name.
‘To think, she was watching over me this whole time...’
A black crow then landed on the cart before turning into Craig. He scowled at Clyde.
“You have to be the most idiotic person I know, Donovan.”
Craig then sighed, “But what you tried to do for us was.... kind. Next time though, don’t put yourself in harm’s way.... Dark Lord.”
Clyde laughed, “Oh god, you heard that.”
Kyle groaned loudly, still in the form of a cart, “Can you guys please hurry up, Clyde isn’t exactly light here!”
Craig pecked Kyle for that one, “Butt out Broflovski.”
Damien turned back to Kenny who had recovered from forcing a portal through the mountain barrier.
He helped Kenny up, “Can you and Craig take Clyde back to the village by flying him. He needs to be buried now, after all. Before the spell wears off.”
Kenny nodded before turning to Craig, “Come on, bird boy. We got to help your best friend. Think you can lift his legs for us?”
Craig sighed, “Sure, as long as he doesn’t squirm for once.”
Clyde sulked, “I don’t squirm.”
Craig flipped him off, “Keep telling yourself that.”
As Kenny and Craig lifted Clyde up, Kyle finally shifted back, stretching his spine as he did.
Craig flipped the fox off as he and Kenny took off.
As Kenny and Craig carefully placed Clyde down in front of his house, Kenny spoke to Clyde.
“Right. You got to stay completely still now. Your dad has to find you and bury you. If you move, he’ll think you’re alive and it won’t work. Can you do that?”
Clyde faked being dead and didn’t answer.
Kenny smirked, “Perfect. Now Craig, caw as loud as you can.”
Craig flipped Kenny off, “I am not doing that!”
Kenny got serious again, “... do you want him to die.... do you want his soul to get destroyed because you couldn’t swallow your pride. Well, Fucker?”
Craig sighed, “Alright, but don’t you fucking tease me about this.”
Kenny nodded in seriousness, “I wouldn’t joke about a situation like this.”
Craig shifted into a crow and took in a deep breath.
“CAW CAW CAWWWWW.”
Mr Donovan immediately lit a small oil lamp and looked out the window. He saw a crow fly away and his son’s body. He ran down the stairs and opened the door, not caring he was barefoot.
“My son.... my precious son.... why did this happen... I should have stopped you the minute I saw that book... but I wanted you to come clean with me... be honest.... oh Clyde.... you really were too kind to deal with what’s been going on....if only I had been there for you more... I should... I should have taken less shifts at the shop....spent more time with you.... I’m sorry....I will bury you next to your mother....that way you can at least be with one of us....I’m so sorry....”
Mr Donovan lifted his son up and began to walk to the cemetery.
After digging the hole where his son would rest, Mr Donovan took some rope and tied it around his son’s ankles.
‘In case that book makes you into an undead creature, I need to make sure you won’t hurt anyone. I am sorry Clyde, but I can’t let you hurt anyone.’
Clyde was then carefully placed inside the hole. Mr Donovan gave his son one last hug before taking the shovel and slowly burying his son in the earth. Clyde waited until the dirt covered his face to let silent tears fall across his cheeks.
‘I’m so sorry dad...I should have told you how I was feeling instead of bottling it up in front of you. I just didn’t want to put you through any more pain...Mom’s passing almost destroyed us both, I didn’t want to bring that pain back.... you were the kind one... you always took care of me, and I took you for granted. You did spend time with me, I just ran off with my friends too much.... I’m the one sorry for everything I put you through.’
Then, Clyde lost consciousness again and the spell took hold.
Clyde awoke to the sound of dirt moving. He tried to help, but said dirt was pinning his arms.
He waited as the scrambling got louder.
He then saw light as he saw the sun again. He saw dirty hands continue to unearth him. When his vision had adjusted, he looked at who was unearthing him.
It was Bebe.
She smiled at him as she continued with her bare hands to remove the dirt.
Clyde sat up and helped her.
As they removed the last of the dirt, Clyde stood up and looked at Bebe.
“You came for me.”
Bebe blushed, “Well, Kenny told me that you were here so I-“
Clyde cut her off, “No I mean when I was doing the spell. I saw you trying to get into the ash circle and save me! Bebe, why would you do that for me?”
Bebe began to weep, her tears soaked her mask, “Clyde, I did it because I really care about you! All this time I’ve been looking out for you and protecting you. I brought wood for making shoes and when you were crying I tried to hug you. I know you couldn’t see me, but I wanted to.”
Clyde stroked Bebe cheek, “Bebe, you didn’t have to do all that for me. I’m just the son of a shoe maker. Why me out of everyone?”
Bebe touched the lightning bolt design she had sewed into Clyde’s kimono the day she had lost her life.
She looked up into his eyes, “Because Clyde, you sweet idiot, I love you.”
Clyde’s eyes began to moisten, “You love me...”
Bebe then put a hand to her mask, “I know though that you could never love me back with how I look now. I mean...I have this horrible scar.”
Clyde took a deep breath in, “Bebe... I have always loved you too.”
Clyde then carefully put his hand round Bebe’s face, “Can I see what’s under here? Let me decide on what I think.”
Bebe was still for a moment before she nodded.
Clyde carefully removed the mask and looked at Bebe’s uncovered face.
He smiled sweetly, “You still look as beautiful as you always do.”
Bebe’s eyes produced more tears, “Clyde....”
Clyde then hugged Bebe close to his chest, “Besides, it doesn’t matter how you look, it’s your soul that I love the most. You're kind, caring. And you always have passion in everything you do. How could anyone not love that.”
Bebe hugged Clyde tightly, never wanting to let go.
Clyde pulled back and kissed the top of her forehead.
Clyde then felt something drop off.
Both Bebe and him looked down to see that his hand had come off his arm.
Bebe laughed, “Kenny said something about that.”
Clyde looked at her quizzically, “What did he tell you?”
“He said to tell you this: as a Kyonshii, you can no longer feel pain when you get stabbed or when your limbs fall off, this will happen a lot. You will have to hop everywhere thanks to the string your dad put round your ankles.”
Clyde laughed, “Wow, I don’t know what I’m going to do if I fall apart all the time.”
Bebe smiled as she picked up his hand and revealed some thread, “You won’t have to do anything as long as I’m here.”
She then expectedly sewed Clyde’s hand back on.
Clyde smiled, “You always were the smart one.”
Bebe then pulled Clyde in for a kiss. She was gentle as she still couldn't believe Clyde loved her back. She was determined to take this slow, but she also wanted to show Clyde how much she cared for him.
As she pulled away, she smiled, “And you always have the biggest heart.”
Clyde then smiled, “Hey, don’t Kyonshii have talismans on their heads?”
Bebe was now confused, “Yeah, why?”
Clyde smiled, “I want to look the part! Let’s go make one!”
Bebe laughed as she pulled out the paper and brush Kenny had given her, “Kenny really knew what he was doing when he gave me these.”
Clyde took the supplies and started writing. In a second he was done and put the paper round his head in between his eyes.
He smiled at Bebe, “What do you think?”
Bebe was silent for a second before laughing once again, “You do realise you’re meant to write something like ‘Evil spirits be gone’. You’ve just written your name Clyde*.”
Clyde was silent before he started laughing too, “Ehehe, guess I got confused. I’ll just keep it like this for now.”
Bebe laughed more as she laced her fingers with Clyde’s.
“Come on. Let’s go home.”
Clyde smiled again as he was led away, hopping the whole way.
‘I may be dead now, but if I get to stay with Bebe I know this second life will never be bad.’
Leslie laughed darkly as she finished watching the events through Nathan’s eyes.
“Stupid human trying to use black magic to bring his friends back. It’s a shame he had the wrong book. I guess they must have been switched at the last second.”
Nathan entered the lair of his goddess and presented to her the real book of resurrection. She smiled once more as she took the book from his hands.
“Nathan, be a good human and set that wood on fire.”
Nathan bowed to her, “Yes, my lady.”
In a matter seconds, the wood was burning thanks to the two flintstones Nathan had used. Leslie threw the real book on the fire and it slowly turned to ash.
“Now we have one less obstacle that will make my plan harder to fulfil, my dear servant.”
Leslie then felt the air change and she looked at Nathan.
“It seems the shinigami has found the edge of my hidden lair... It is time to move before he finds us. My dear knight, will you help me with finding a new home?”
Nathan smiled and kissed Leslie’s hand.
“It will be my pleasure, my goddess.”
*Clyde's talisman says クライド which is in the katakana alphabet and pronounced ‘ kuraido ’ .