Annarlathotep…the chattering chaos…I am the last…I will tell the sensate abomination of desolation…

I can’t recall when it began exactly, one day to the next blurred into maelstrom crowds and beer.

For months, an ineffable tension wracked the world, season upon season of civil, social, and military unrest piled turmoil upon turmoil. Brooding it grew, along the lines of communication it flowed, a constant dagger of grotesque fear scratching up your back, on Twitter, on Fox News, on Facebook, on CNN, in the papers, in the mouths of fools on the street. An apprehension slithered into the guts of all men who breathed, who dared to speak.

And then it was one day out of the calm blue sky Bronze Age Pervert came. Who he was, none could tell, but he came nonetheless, when the stars were right. He, and the dreaded Annarlathotep, she older than the sands of Arabia and the ziggurats of Ur. Somehow Annarlathotep called to mind a fertility goddess, a chic model on heroin, a Levantine daemoness. Swart, slender, sinister. Brooklyn hipsters knelt when they saw her, but could not say why. Always coming up with strange hot takes, then combining them into even stranger forms.

Women advised one another to hear Annarlathotep, and shuddered.

Soy-boys and she-shrikes screamed in nightmares during the small hours. Never before had the night been rent by the screams of dreamers into which Annarlathotep crept.

During the light hours of the day, old men, old women lost in transient delusions of their youth wept. Youths praised strange Twitterverse beings shrouded in anime AVIs and endless in-jokes. The summer sweltered on amidst the confusion of the wicked city.

I remember when Bronze Age Pervert appeared in the sky. It was a hot autumn morning in NYC, that vile mass of seamy humanity. The Air Force had lost the engagement. Men whispered and shouted in the streets. Women discretely, and not so discretely, rubbed themselves, and moaned like cheap whores.

Stockbrokers on Wall Street got coked out then stripped down to run amok. Muscled-out naked finance bros battled riot cops in lower Manhattan.

I saw it on the news as our world shook in its final convulsions.

And did ever Manhattan convulse. A loud wailing came from an apartment, a woman shattering her lungs in pain, ecstasy, and pleasure. Annarlathotep fucked, an evil unnatural coupling of Outer Gods. The edge of space and our world crashed together. The angles of the buildings in Manhattan seemed wrong, people swore that the city was the same as it always was. My friends and I joined the rushing crowd to gaze in wonder at the grotesque booming shouts of “SUBMIT” echoing up and down the steel and glass canyons.

In a mass we gathered in front of the building, a sickly homage from a diseased assembly of acolytes; people’s faces were lit up in disgusting sneers and leers. An unnatural light emanated from the tenth floor pulsing in hues not from the normal visible spectrum.

A slender blonde woman, someone called “Dasha,” burst in a frenzy from the lobby doors. Her face clawed up, she shrieked and said strange things, horrible things: “I saw his sphincter, aaaayyyyiiiiii! Rings and waves! The pulsing colours not of this world. So many. Do not look. Do not look upon the greatness of that butthole out of space!” Then Dasha spoke some sort of Slavic whore gibberish: “Radi’ uteres gathan’gna me’eh k’ulpa me’eh k’ulpa me’eh m’ksima k’ulpa libera te tutemet ex inferis!”

People laughed at her, they flipped her the bird. Her voice tortured our ears, made us angry. The crowd pushed and shoved her. A black he-she slapped Dasha viciously.

Over all, a greenish moon rose; vapors wafted down from the outer dark. The sun reeled in the sky, a whirling, dimming, cooling pitiful orb. We pointed and jeered and snarled at each other. Dasha writhed naked, hoisted upon the shoulders of acolytes, covered in blood holding up her eyes as she yelled obscene hot takes: “Class liberation shall not happen until we are consumed and spat out as foreseen by Eibon. We must come into the shadow of the Goat with a Thousand Young. Pragmanosthai en arxein en skotiwos jaddathumai. Bhurny! Bhurny!”

The crowd turned inward in a frenzy. A man next to me bit off his fingers; he stuck two in his nose, two in his ears, and swallowed the rest. A fat man slammed a skinny chick’s head against the curb until his arms were red up to the elbows. He kept crying, “Mommy, no!” Something with a dick and tits ran around covered in blood cutting itself and others with a straight razor.

A crimson crack appeared in the sky, and in it, the black orb of Yuggoth descended.

I and others made our way from the maddening crowd; in three columns, we headed uptown. Storefronts became dilapidated, the roads and sidewalks cracked and weedy, building sagged and rotted. Against the dark panorama of the sky, One World Trade Center was sheered off at the top, the Empire State Building hollowed out. There were no street vendors. We shuffled on past rank weeds and skeletons locked in fatal embraces. Rusted cars lined the shoulder. Snowdrifts gathered at our ankles as we shouted and laughed to ourselves. I looked about for a beer; some smelly homeless guy, one of my companions, passed me a Gatorade bottle full of vodka. It tasted sweet.

One column disappeared down into the subway groaning in deep undulant tones. The other disappeared down an alley strewn with mountains of garbage giggling as they chanted “Bhurny! Bhurny!

How soon I cannot tell we were in open country. Mocking stars twinkled down at us in a blanket of blood. Grave markers dotted the red-litten snow drifts.

One by one, my companions disappeared dreamily into the void.

Ahead on the horizon, lit in the rays of the dying red sun, loomed that ominpresent face, a face lording it over the blasted lifeless sphere of city-pocked rock where the thin reedy monotonous sound of wind scours over a dead crust of dirt.

I at last saw the face of Annarlathotep.