Useless (youngwilliam) wrote,

Doggie in the Window

On my way home from work today, I got to thinking about Lovecraft's Long's Hounds of Tindalos and how they irk me.

Ok, so the basic story (as far as I remember -- I'm sure one can dial up some Lovecraft online archive since he's often considered public domain these days read it here) is that there's some guy who's scrying into the past. He's having a grand old time, until he sees some nasty gaunt mastiff thing with a whipcord tongue that seems to be able to see him seeing it. Spooked, he cuts the connection. Over the next while, he keeps getting visions of this hellhound coming for him (I can't recall if it's through other scrying sessions or if it's in dreams) so he does a bit of research. Turns out it's a "Hound of Tindalos" who, if our reality exists in the curves of time/space, exists in the angles of time/space. What this means is they have the ability to travel through time (after a while) and can manifest in angles. The guy realizes that the hound is heading for him through time, so he flips out and starts daubing plaster all around the corners of his room to keep the hound at bay. The hound keeps approaching in his visions, he thinks he's safe since he rounded the corners of the room he's in, but the plaster overdries, cracks, the Hound manifests through the angles of the cracks, and eats his face, with his gay lover academic associate reading all this post-facto in some diary.

What irks me about it is that the "hound" looks like a hound and is hounding him. If it was called a "hound", looked canine, but didn't track him? Wouldn't be so bad. If it was called a "hound", had a thing for tracking, but didn't look canine? Also wouldn't be so bad. But the combo just kind of gets under my skin.

What I'd prefer is if the visions were dreams and involved what appeared to be an origami orchid made out of smoke that is folding and unfolding in a cascade. The smoke fades in and out, but instead of doing it in swirly random ways, it's doing it in what seems like some obscure mathematical pattern. From this cascading origami smoke orchid (AKA: COSO), the image of a hellhound initially glared at him.

In the subsequent dream visions, the cascading of the COSO has the gist of it gradually expanding, although it sometimes has to contract itself for a few moves to allow for the next phase of expansion. Each dream ends with the hellhound running towards him from the COSO, and later savagely leaping from the COSO.

Blah blah blah, eldritch horrors, things I can not.. nay, must not describe, you know the drill.

But instead of it all being in a diary, we conclude with:
When the hound began to manifest, I realized the image of the mastiff was but my mind attempting to find a symbol to express the entity. The arabesque form I had seen was closer to its true visage, although no more than a looming shadow is the face of an approaching executioner.

Fade to black, roll credits.
  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.