In Sedlec They Knew Wood's Brother

The night before, I’m in his room. It’s important that we be prepared. He’s nervous since it’s his first time. I’m nervous too, listening for the sound of footsteps or much worse a door. It’s important to be vigilant. Every third word he says manages to reach me. He’s in that hyper exuberant state people get in when you don’t tell them to stop talking about whatever thing they happen to be interested in. I think he’s talking about the new season of whatever anime he’s currently obsessed with. I don’t say it, but I can’t stand the stuff. I can see the appeal, it’s easier to ignore the brainwash and cultural baggage that something is soaked in if it’s not the brainwash and culture that you’re used to seeing. It’s novel.

The excitement is carrying in his voice and I’m itching to tell him to keep his voice down even though that’d make him sad, but before I resolve that internal conflict he pulls out his phone and his tone gets more hushed. He’s gone from talking about things that people don’t care about to things he’d get in trouble for. I’m listening a little more, silently encouraging him. It’s important for things to progress naturally.

He’s showing me a porn comic, embarrassed but still enthused that he can talk about his interests without reprimand. We start reading it together and I feel him scooting toward me. Unsurprisingly it’s about two brothers fucking each other; his interests are always pretty singular, comfort in repetition.

“It’s nice to have an older brother who’s nice to you, huh?”


His breath hitches and I can feel him opening up, literally see his brain pussy relax. It’s always like this, the little tension bubble around him is password protected and dissolves when I say the right words. I know it’s a little unfair, but it’s part of the process. We both have to be ready.

My arm wraps around him and I can feel him shivering like an animal. Well, humans are animals, so it’s normal. It’s obvious that he’s losing some of his self-consciousness because he stops on a page he really likes to zoom in on a single panel of the two of them kissing. Clearly he really likes it, it’s drawn to look super soft and wet and plush, a maximally idealized abstraction of human contact, drawing what you want it to feel like rather than what it really looks like. Aesthetically I kind of have a problem with it, but I get hard looking at it anyway. Now’s as good a time as any. I take his chin in my fingers and kiss him. The sound he makes is way too loud, so I push my tongue into his mouth which makes him even louder but it’s muffled now. He’s trying to touch me, not really knowing where he should put his hands, awkward desperation. I make it easier for him by entwining our fingers and pinning his arms down.



I’m pulled out of it, the spell is broken.

“I told you not to call me that.”

“I… ah… I’m sorry… It just came out…”

Normally he calls me the kind of saccharine terms they use in his porn comics, which is fine. His whimpering cries of “oniichan” are funny, they don’t fit in our context cleanly. But the fact that he called me that makes it clear that he doesn’t get it yet. It’s fine though, it would be stupid to be mad. People can’t know things unless they learn them.

“It’s fine,” I whisper, putting my hand on his head, “I just don’t like that name. It feels gross, like a curse someone put on me. When I hear it I lose mana points.”

He nods at this, quietly tugging on my shirt to pull me down onto him. It doesn’t seem like he wants to keep doing what we were doing before, so I just lay over him like a blanket, propped up on my arms so I don’t crush him too much. I rest my forehead on his and listen to him breathing, feel his arms snaking under the back of my shirt to rest on my skin.


We met for the first time sitting around on the gym floor during lunch. Most kids were hanging around near their cliques or people in the same class as them. This area up against the wall is basically where outcasts, loners and spergs hung out. They made for much better ambiance. He was real chatty, in that annoying way that people with a underdeveloped social cue parsers can be. He was trying to be funny, but it’s clear that nobody else really got it. He was referencing imageboard memes that were surprising for a kid his age to know. I looked up from my food to say the second half of the meme, and his face lit up like a projector light, blinding to look at. After that, every time he saw me at lunch he’d make a beeline over toward me, talking about anime or memes or whatever else was obsessing him at the moment. He’d show me random videos, and some of them were even pretty funny in a Dadaist sort of way. He listened to me, too, which felt nice. I could tell that he was basically a good kid, and I wanted to fix that.

When I started talking to him about more serious stuff, it was obvious that he didn’t really get it. He seemed enraptured by everything I said, but it was too much, had too much context. Experience really is the best teacher.

I don’t know if he was impervious to the fact that basically everyone thought I was dangerous, a school shooter in the making, whatever else they whispered, or if that just made me more exotic in his eyes. He came from an uptight bullshit normie family like basically everyone else here. He didn’t like talking about any of them except his brother, my age but in college, whom he seemed to look up to a lot. It sounded like the guy had been basically the only person he had to talk to, so when he packed up last year and left, it got pretty lonely.


We’re huddled under the blankets, both out of our clothes. I don’t know how long that took, but it was probably too long. It was important, but now that it’s done and my senses are heightened every sound is magnified. This is useful, I can’t relax right now like he can. I hear a sound like a toilet flushing and I bolt up. That’s my cue.

There’s a forlorn look on his face as I’m throwing my clothes back on but I can’t comfort him now. I take one second to look him dead in the eye.


“Yeah, okay, tomorrow!”

The pact seems to make him a little happier, which is good because that’s all I can afford. Footsteps are driving me out of my mind and I vault out the window and disappear into the trees behind his house.


Night again. Warm and humid. Good soil. There was a summer storm in the afternoon that’s since passed by. Can smell it radiating out of the ground. Water rehydrating mineral scents.

Waiting in the spot we agreed on. Waiting to find out if I’m going solo or not. We agreed, but I’m not holding him to it. I’ll wait a little longer. The duffel bag’s biting into my shoulder so I put it down, sit on it. It’s not a comfortable seat but I’m like a bird incubating its eggs. That’s a good one.

It’s not my first time by a long shot, but I can still hear my heart. I know it’d be worse if I didn’t prepare yesterday though. I was right about preparing my body and spirit, as I suspected. Focused, all that energy focused into a singular purpose. Manifesting.

When he shows up he looks incredibly sketch, walking conspicuously in his hoodie. But it’s fine, it doesn’t matter. If somebody sees us it’ll be too late for him anyway.

At the sight of me he breaks into a sprint, panting by the time he reaches me.

“Hey. You made it.”

“Y-Yeah! We promised, I promised. You said it was going to be something good?”

Good kid. He seems clearer today too.

“That’s right. You’re gonna help me out today. Big bro’s special helper.”

It’s not necessary for me to jab at his weak spot like that, but the way he blushes and hides in his hoodie is satisfying, and I can tell it makes him want to take things more seriously.

Hoisting myself up, I reach out a hand and he grabs it. Shy. It’s a brisk walk to where we’re going.

“So I had this friend, right,” I don’t know why I’m talking. It isn’t important that I be talking right now. This should be solemn. The air’s different now, though, now that there’s two of us. Electricity or gods and demons watching us.

“And this guy, you know, my friend, he wanted me to read some book by this guy Evola. Said it changed his whole life. Said it let him see through the lies. So I read it, and Evola, he, he says that the… the power of a society is preserved by tradition. By passing down traditions and values to your kids and by honoring the ancestors and their connection to the other world. That there’s a natural order and ‘sacred legacy’. Haha.

“But the thing is, it can be broken, right? And this guy, he doesn’t want it to be broken, he thinks shit should stay the same forever like it was thousands of years ago, but he keeps talking about how it can be broken, ruined.” Deep breath. Panting. He looks like he’s in a trance. Have to keep going.

“He talks about how demons try and fuck up this ‘sacred legacy’. And he’s, he’s right. We are—we are the fucking demons. We can wreck all this society bullshit, we can make their whole fucking system fall apart. And this guy was so, so afraid. Because he knows… he knows we can, he knows we’re coming for them. My friend didn’t get it at all, he was reading this thinking it was the most real thing ever but it’s just a guy shitting himself because he’s so afraid. That’s what they’re all so afraid of, the teachers, the parents, every single adult. They know we’re coming for them to break down all the bullshit that they built and drag them down into the dirt with us and turn their legacy into us. We are the enemy they fear.”

His eyes are so big. Big and beautiful.

“How can we break it…? I want to… I want to break it with you… Everyone and everything is so stupid, I hate it. I hate it! They treat us so bad, they take away everything that’s good and make everything so so lonely…”

He trails off and I grip his hand and he squeezes back hard. His face is pale as he finds his next question.

“Are… are we going to kill somebody?”

I laugh, “No, dude. That’s the thing, right? Killing them would just make them stronger. They’d be martyrs and icons in their, in their crusade. We have to take away what really matters to them, what they’re really afraid of.”

“And what’s that?”

“We’re here.”


Out of the duffel bag comes a pair of shovels. The rain really was perfect. Soil’s a bit looser, not hard and dry. Takes a while anyway. Talking while we work, a whisper just above the metal-on-dirt sounds.

“They have this place, this church or whatever, in Europe. Inside, everything’s decorated in bones. In human bones. Pyramids of skulls stacked on top of each other. Ribs and legs and arms shaped into crests, symbols of this place. When people talk about the desecration of the dead, this kind of thing… they might be shocked by it at first, but it’s for Art or God or some other thing that makes it okay. It’s for something. It doesn’t matter anymore who those people were because it was thousands of years ago and anyway they’re part of this great thing now, this symbol of faith and reflection on morality or whatever. You have to see they don’t really care about the dead. The dead are only useful if they serve the project of society. No matter what anyone does in their life to fight against the way the world is, in death their soul will get cannibalized to feed the myths, the soul of society. Even us, even people like us, if we let them. They take our deaths from us. Our names, who and what we were, they erase it in stone. But we can erase them too.”

We hit wood, finally. Don’t have to bother uncovering the whole thing, just the top is enough. I tell him to stand back and drive my shovel down, splintering the wood. It’s an awful smell when we break through. I’m used to it by now but it doesn’t look like he can handle it, crouching down and gagging. I let him ride it out until he catches his breath, then guide him to the hole I’ve made in the coffin. With the debris cleared out of the way, the empty sockets of a skull stare up at us. Empty but accusatory.

“Like I told you. Fingers in the sockets, pull back, hard.”

He’s trying so hard not to cry. The putrid smell is taking a while to dissipate. Still, he doesn’t let me down. He pulls straight back, revealing the hole in the bottom, loosely connected to the spine. I take out the knife, big and dull and heavy.

“With this you steal their past. With you I steal their future. We break their circle at both ends. We break the circle—”

Crack. Rip. You’re sobbing but I grab you.

“Don’t let go of it. It comes with us.”

It’s too loud. There’s a light, a car pulling up. Changing their shifts. I throw everything in the bag and pick you up. You’re way too small, you must not be eating enough. My shirt is getting wet but it doesn’t matter. I get us out of there. It’ll be too late by the time they notice now. We’re back at my place.

You stopped crying at some point, but I can tell you’re still freaking out inside. Like the wire that lets you use your voice and body got cut, so now you’re trapped inside.

Got you on the bed again, just sitting. You’re still clutching onto the skull.

“You did really good. To be honest… I didn’t think you were going to show up. I should have had more faith in you. I’m sorry.”

“…if I… to me…” I lean in closer so you can keep being as quiet as you need.

“i…if I died… would you… do that, to my body?”

“Of course I would. Haven’t you been listening to what I’ve been telling you?” I regret the force behind my words for a second when you give me a mortified, wounded look, but I press on, “You’re with me now, you’re like me now. I wouldn’t… I won’t let them take you back and turn you back into one of them. Not in this world or any other. I wouldn’t let them try and canonize you. You’re my brother now.”

Fresh tears break out of your eyes. You’re hugging me, nodding.





“Love you…”

“Love you too little bro.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Written by Laevos on 09 June 2022