Anniversary Email 38

Please join me in wishing a happy 4 year anniversary to <NAME>. <NAME>, aka AZ Gainz, keeps our endpoints processing and our <SOFTWARE> installations up to date and secure. He also keeps the team pumping out pushups. By this time next year we will all be huge, monstrous Bro-grammers that crush out code and rip phone books in half.

I found myself in an decrepit library in the ruins of ancient Babylon. Suddenly, I was surrounded by a strange grey mist. I awoke in a cavernous stone room, the walls adorned with intricate bas relief carvings. A booming voice cut through the gloom.

“Supplicant! You stand in the halls of the League of Assassins! An ancient and powerful order! We have need of you…”

“Certainly,” I stammered, not wanting to perturb an assassin, let alone an entire league of them. Honestly, I do not know how many people constitute a league, but I assume it a lot. Probably more than 10? At any rate…

“Silence your incessant internal monologue!” the voice demanded, sending dust raining down from the decaying stonework. “Bring us the one known as <NAME>. We have need of him.”

“You mean AZ Gainz? Of course, oh great and terrible league of assassins,” I said, bowing. “What do you require of him?”

“The time of prophecy is once more upon us,” the voice intoned. “He must undergo the dread ritual and become… THE NETHER BEAST.”

My interested piqued, I inquired, “If I may be so bold, what, pray tell, is the nether beast?” Cyptozoology is an interest of mine. More of a fascination. At times I find myself…

“What did I say about the monologue? BEHOLD!” it boomed, illuminating a portion of the carved stonework. “The nether beast!”

“Uh… That is just a carving of a guy holding a broom. And his shirt says custodian…”

“It is the nether beast! And we have need of him! Certainly you have seen how dust keeps falling every time I speak? This ancient temple must have the nether beast stalk its halls once more! Seriously, it is just gross. I was eating my assassin fuel this morning and there was, like, a ton of dust in it.”

“And assassin fuel would be?” I questioned.

“Honey nut cheerios,” the voiced offered pleasantly.

“Yeah…” I said, uncertainly, “I mean, look, I’ll tell him, but I don’t think he will come. Your league is not particularly fearsome…”

“Silence!” the voice demanded, “He will come and he will become the nether beast and everything will be great again. It is written in prophecy.”

“I get the feeling your prophecy is written on a cocktail napkin,” I offered, growing more defiant by the second.

“It is not!” The voice had taken on a defensive tone. “It is a Starbucks napkin,” it mumbled.


“Be gone from this place, supplicant! And remember your task!” I was once more surrounded by mist. I awoke in the library, and in front of me was a bowl of dusty honey nut cheerios.

Happy Anniversary!

Anniversary Email 37

Please join me in wishing a happy 6 year anniversary to <NAME>! <NAME> is an integral part of the team, keeping watch over our provisioning flows and making sure our customers are setup quickly, reliably, and securely. Without his tireless efforts, account setup and modifications would be a process fraught with peril.

Of course, nothing can compare with the peril manifested by the grim legions of the ancient Kyardoon, skull faced master of the blood harvest. His minions are countless, the dull grey of their soul spears glinting faintly in the wan light cast by the brimstone fires of his realm, a realm of torture and madness. They stand arrayed in perfect formation, awaiting  word from their deathless master, who shall lift his head and whisper the words that shall unleash Armageddon on our world. On that day he shall ride forth from the underworld on a horse of smoke and flame, his legions close behind, to turn our works to ruin. His blood riders will cackle as they ride down those who attempt to flee, their spears slick with the blood of the fallen. The dead shall be bound into eternal service in his army. The living shall be left with nothing but tears and hot ashes, their hopes swept away in a tide of murder and chaos, their last recourse to envy the dead. Finally, at last satisfied with the toll enacted on humanity, Kyardoon shall return to his throne, lower his lidless eyes, and dream of dark days ahead as the funeral pyres flame out and ten thousand years of suffering descend on the last tattered remains of the human race.

Happy anniversary!

Scorpion Chronicles 27

Last night’s kill count: 1

There you were. Daintily perched atop the wall, contemplating your course of action. On one side, security and safety. A place you knew. Where you grew into your current loathsome incarnation. Where you might go about your business unmolested. Where you could hunt and lie to yourself that you are a king. The unchallenged apex predator.

On the other, tales of death and horror. Of a mad man with eyes like fire. A demon with a stick and poison breath to rain suffering and doom on you and all your wretched fellows. A crazed beast that frothed at the mouth and screamed for blood. That which hunts the hunters.

Did you expect your temerity might save you? That I might be wracked by the same indecision and stay my hand? Fool. What did you seek to find here, scorpion? Glory? These are fields of Gehenna. Here you shall find judgement and death. Only judgement and death. There are no tales of valor sung in this accursed place. No tome inscribed with tales of great heroes. Only the corpses of the shattered and broken. The rotting flesh of those who felt their insides burn and putrefy. This is where you met your end. This is how it always ends. I left your wretched remains atop the wall as a monument to your impertinence. Let any others who share your ambition look upon them and know the cost of hubris.

Scorpion Chronicles 26

Tonight’s kill count: 1.

Scorpions, is this your secret shame? Does some erotic desire cause you to come here, seeking punishment? Do you listlessly toss and turn in your earthen beds, soaked with sweat, yearning for my unforgiving caress? When you begin your grotesque coupling, is it me you picture, a stern and foreboding overlord primed to deliver punishment?

You continue to seek your end here. There must be some primal, unfulfilled need at work. Blatant idiocy? Pure suicidal madness? Yearnings of the flesh? It matters not. The French have an idiom for orgasm, Le Petite Mort, the little death. Allow me to deliver the grand, final death. I shall be your overture, if that is what you wish. I am the storm, and I can not be contained.

Anniversary Email 36

Please join me in wishing a happy 7 year anniversary to <NAME> of the <ORGANIZATION>. Our work wouldn’t be possible without his dedication and expertise. 7 is an auspicious number. The 7 wonders of the world. 7 Samurai. Seagram’s 7 and 7. Of course, none can compare with the 7 Trials of the dread beast Boggrim, she who devours. Given your anniversary, you have been selected to face her contests in a bid to bestow her foul blessings upon us.

The first challenge is The Desert that Thirsts. You will be consumed in her thousand fanged threshing maw, your flesh shredded and your bones ground to dust in the dark and terrible pit that is the creature’s vast and vile mouth. There you will languish and suffer for what seems like a year, but in reality is only eleven and a half months.

The Second Challenge is the Striking Serpent. You will be tossed back into the maw for more grinding and chewing.

Third is the Test of Fire. Basically a continuation of the first two.

Fourth comes the Freezing Rains. We dump some fire ants into the mouth with you. Honestly, this makes more sense if it were the test of fire, but I don’t really recommend trying to give feedback to a rapacious monster that is little more than a fanged tube leading to a seemingly bottomless stomach. The last guy who did that ended up learning about the eighth trail, which… the less said about that, the better. Just… Gah. It was awful.

Fifth and Sixth are… look, they have names, but are just more time in the fangs with the ants and acidic saliva and the chewing and the breaking of bones. I’m not really convinced Boggrim has the ability to do much of anything else. She is called the devourer for a reason.

Seventh comes The Ordeal of the Thrashing Thousand Fanged Maw. That is where you have to go back to high school and take a test in your underwear. I don’t get it either. Just roll with it. Honestly, at that point it won’t even seem that bad.

Finally, having survived the tests, you will be granted a request of Boggrim. You may ask for whatever you want. Now, I cannot guarantee the thing will understand or even care about your request. She may just toss you back into the maw, but there is a chance it could work out, and we feel it is worth it. Congratulations again!

Anniversary Email 35

Congratulations on your recent anniversary, <NAME>. As you know, here at <COMPANY> we are leaders in employee recognition and rewards. In honor of your anniversary, you have been selected for a trip to the Planet of Torment. Don’t worry, it is something of a misnomer. It is actually a moon orbiting a corrosive gas giant. In the pain zone, you will learn a new and horrible meaning of suffering, as the gravitational forces at work on the moon twist and pull your body, while the native population of stinging cybernetic insects infest your flesh. Don’t worry, it is all for a dark and inscrutable purpose set forth by the Ancient Ones, who inscribed this in prophecy a million years past. Of course, they were wiped out in a great purge when the queen of the stinging insects arose from her basalt tomb and screamed for the blood of the uncorrupted, but we heed their ancient wisdom to this day. I suspect all of this will end just fine, and in no way will you be used as a vessel for the terrible queen to rise once more and wage war on the galaxy. Further, I have absolutely no reason to believe that once this comes to pass she will seek me out to become her consort, allowing us to ply the stars together and purge the universe of life, her cold and chitinous grasping limb wrapped by my warm, fleshy hand as a thousand worlds in flame reflect in her compound eyes.

Scorpion Chronicles 25

Tonight’s kill count: 1

Scorpions, did you enjoy your respite? Did you imagine yourself free from the madness and the terror? For a week and a half I have not visited my terrible vengeance upon you. You have had your run of my domain. How did you comport yourself during these auspicious times? Did you feast? I hope so. Now is the feast of sorrows.

Did you hope absence would cool my rage? Yours was a forlorn hope. My hatred was tempered. Strengthened by my time away from you. I imagined a litany of crimes you were committing in my absence and I resolved to make you pay. My vigil is unending. Let us walk the path to hell together. I shall have my road smoothed by passing of your numberless dead before me.

Scorpion Chronicles 24

Tonight’s kill count: 1.

Scorpions, tell me, did you enjoy your reprieve from the hunt? Did you hope that it was at last at an end? Your hope was in vain. I am a monster, forged in the fires of your venom. When you chose to sting me, you chose the path of endless war. Of ceaseless slaughter. Of interminable lamentation. You created the weapon of your own destruction, and I will not stop. Not now. Not ever. My hatred is limitless. My resolve is steel. What hope has your supple carapace against my iron fury? I am the rock against which you break. I will bury you. I will bury your children. I will make graves of your hopes and bury your dreams beneath the shattered bodies of those you hold most dear.

Anniversary Email 34

Happy six year anniversary, <NAME>! Summer is a time of unimaginable, oppressive heat in <CITY>, the place we call home. However, it will seem almost like an oasis compared to the prison the ancient Vyraxons have prepared for humanity within the heart of a dying star in the crab nebula. Using specialized reaping guns, these terrible monsters will agonizingly strip flesh from our bones so that our raw nerves can be wired into void phase suits, designed to allow us to withstand the crushing gravity of the blazing inferno that we will be forced to call our home. Once there, pitiless overseers with thrash us with pain tendrils that drip with venomous ooze as we mine dense elements from the burning core of the celestial body. The six years you have spent at <COMPANY> will seem but a passing of an instant compared to the seeming eternity we will ceaselessly toil within those wretched tunnels. On completion of our labor, we will be left within the orb, trapped, as it collapses into a singularity. Once this dire event comes to pass, we will be impossibly stretched as we are dragged screaming into the black hole, where we will become one with its infinite density. The Vyraxons call this the descent into the zone of torment. Given all that will have come before, you should have some idea of what those words portend.

All that will be left of humanity will be old I Love Lucy episodes, slowly crawling their way through the infinite vacuum between the stars. Remember that time she worked with Ethel in the chocolate factory, and she couldn’t keep up, so she started eating them? May that memory provide you comfort as you are dragged screaming into the abyss. Perhaps you will bellow a well-timed “Ricky!” as your essence passes the event horizon, before being sucked into the voracious pit within space time.