"Go with it as best you can... Do that day by day and give the rest over to God.
There's nothing else you can do, is there?" ~~from Stephen King's The Green Mile

Hi all,

I'm back to work on the next longish story.  While the pandemic is ongoing, I'm going to go ahead and set the story this month.  So while I mostly focus on that, here's some more spooky tropes as seen in Dyeland stories!

God bless,

Yet More Halloween and Other Spooky Tropes in Dyeland Stories
(Previously in JABB 474 and JABB 502)

Religious Horror- Well, I can't believe I missed this one until now!  Basically any horror elements in the Dyeland stories are religious horror since demons are always the root cause.  Even when there were vampires, those were traced back to a demonic source of the infection.  While not exactly horror, one of the creepiest scenes in any of the stories is Emma's church nightmare in "The Carpenter."  If it were a movie, I woulda filmed that sequence to look like something out of Stephen King with a dark church and candles and a creepy Jesus statue.  And then, of course, it would dissipate when Joshua showed up. 

Halloween Costume Characterization- Well, there's Joshua going as a lion which was very much on-the-nose.  Andrew and JenniAnn tend to coordinate their costumes which reflects their closeness.  Most recently, they both went as classical angels which, of course, reflects who Andrew is but also that he refers to JenniAnn as "my angel."  Prior to that, Andrew once spent Halloween dressed as Lancelot which was a perfect match since he's protective, proud, and rather fond of his own Guenevere.  Ivy has gone as Anne of Green Gables which reflects her bookishness.  Shelby and Belle went as Elsa and Anna one year which was a perfect fit since they're devoted sisters.  And I'm sure there are plenty of other examples that I'm forgetting about.

Complete Monster- I'm not going to say that any character in a Dyeland story is wholly irredeemable.  But there are at least a couple who I have no attachment to and see no good qualities in.  Rex and Derek are two such characters.  Pretty much the only good thing I can say about them is they sired really wonderful children in Max, Joccy, and Zoe.  We still don't know what happened to Max's mom but given we know Rex abused at least one wife, I think it's safe to say he abused Max's mom, too.  He was a negligent father who was cruel to his sensitive son.  He came onto a teenaged JenniAnn and later assaulted and shot her.  And all of this left Max with a lingering fear that he would be abusive, too.  Thankfully, Max is over that now but who can really blame him for having doubts?  Meanwhile, Derek was also an abusive father.  He repeatedly raped Emma and used her love for Joccy and Zoe to keep her in line.  When it became public, he allowed the town to cast all their blame onto Emma.  And he's racist.  Just yuck all around.

Deliver Us From Evil
- Josef had put aside his seedier behavior for a while before Daisy.  But after he adopts her, he takes the vampirism cure and lives out the rest of his life as a normal mortal and upstanding citizen.

Evil Cannot Comprehend Good
- I think this is the root of why Satan and the demons are so hung up on Andrew.  They revolted against God because they felt like He was replacing them with those puny, sinful, dirty humans.  And He was going to die for them!  It made absolutely zero sense to them.  So they fell.  And then there's Andrew who not only simply loves humans like all good angels should but also... he formed a family with them!  He sleeps with one!  If he could, he'd probably die for them.  They just can't understand it.  All they know is the longer Andrew spends with his chosen humans, the weaker and weaker their side gets.  Yehuda gets to Heaven, vampirism is cured, and now there's something going on with the serpent of Eden... 

Don't Fear the Reaper- Obviously!  All of the angels of death featured in the Dyeland stories, whether originally from TBAA or not, are good and kind.  They have different personalities, of course, and some may be a little softer than others.  But none of them should be feared.  And bonus!  Andrew and Adam are both specifically mentioned on that page.  Sadly, Henry was left out but that's understandable since he was only in two episodes.

Blood Magic- I'm probably not ever going to get into how vampirism started but probably it involved some form of this.  Demon blood or something.  On the more positive side, the cure to vampirism ends up being Joshua's blood mixing with Marty's tears and falling upon the earth to then grow flowers. 

Dumbwaiter Ride- So this is more funny than scary but in "God in the Gloom," after watching an episode of The Haunting of Hill House featuring a frightening dumbwaiter ride, Andrew comments that he's glad he and JenniAnn blocked up the dumbwaiters at Willowveil while Shelby was little.  Probably they just did it because they were afraid of little Shelby hurting herself. But who knows what goes on in the abandoned pool in their basement.  ;-)

Room 101- The demons seem able to manifest some version of this.  While Andrew is in Sheol, he's made to experience an abandoned Willowveil, complete with Belle's rotting cradle.  At another point, they make him imagine that he accidentally killed JenniAnn.  So, yeah, they knew just where to hit where it hurt.

The Sacred Darkness- Joshua may be the Light of the World but he works in the darkness, too.  In the Dyelandverse and likely reality, he arrived in darkness (being born before sunrise) and he departed in darkness (when the skies turned black during the Crucifixion).  In "The King," Joshua is thinking about Andrew and JenniAnn and recalls when they were part of the "vast galaxy of spirits yet to be born."  In my head, I envisioned a field of pure darkness peppered with bright lights that were these pre-Creation spirits existing in the mind of God.  And that certainly seems sacred.  And then some of my favorite Joshua scenes happen at night.  He and JenniAnn first meet in a dark alley in "Promises of Someday."  In "Chrysalis," Zmaray and Salma meet in waking life during the early morning hours while it's still dark.

And on that note... here are some jigsaw puzzles of Andrew, Monica, and Tess in nighttime scenes.  Completing a puzzle while sipping my morning coffee is part of my routine and I needed some new ones!

preview150piece"The Occupant" Andrew

preview150piece"A Rock and a Hard Place" Andrew

preview143piece"Bringer of Light" Trio
And this one has nothing to do with TBAA but it's a photo I took while at a pumpkin patch and I thought it was pretty so... enjoy some autumnal flowers in jigsaw form!

preview150pieceAutumnal Flowers
This newsletter is dedicated to John Dye for being one of the many reasons I love October.  It's the month when I start to come out of my summer writing slump!

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(Photo Credits: The photographs used on this page are from Touched by an Angel and owned by CBS Productions, Caroline Productions, and Moon Water Productions.  They are not being used to seek profit.)