s â€™ e s n e Nons
Guide to the
Supernatural Creatures You’ll Date 2 1 (Before One Kills You)
We’ve all been there: young, full of human organs and soul that make you irresistible to your standard supernatural creature.
Vampire The old standard. Your mom loves him, your dad hates him, and the call of your blood may be too strong for him to resist! Not really the greatest date for girls who love the beach, camping, or being able to grow old with your beloved, rather than withering away as he remains perfect, a mockery of what you once were… but damn, does he love you! He’s the perfect guy for when you really need to just write poetry and figure yourself out for a bit. Sure, your relationship can only end with a volatile breakup or your death, but either way you get to be the center of attention! Yay!
Elf Sometimes you end up falling for the perfect guy. Smart, intelligent, rich, hundreds of years old, an aristocrat with daddy issues. He’s not really dangerous; in fact out of all the creatures you’ll date, he sets the safety bar pretty damn high. Truly your elf boyfriend is absolutely perfect in every way, but perfection is so borrrring. Remember that time you thought about getting a tattoo and he scoffed at the idea of you marking your porcelain skin? Yes, he carries the riches of a lost civilization and is willing to give it all up for you, but we both know this relationship is a one way ticket to Lamesville. Skip.
Ghost You’re 21; he’s dead, but when attraction strikes ya gotta at least give it a chance. Maybe dating a guy who died before women could vote wasn’t your best choice, but he’s so chivalrous! The whole “not leaving the land on which he died” thing, as well as the “not believing in modern medicine” thing might be the nail in the coffin for this relationship, but you still have warm thoughts every time you reconnect through a Ouija board. Plus when that one loser kills you, you’ll already have someone to hook up with in the afterlife.
Demon Nope nope nope. Every one of your friends told you to stay away but you couldn’t keep away from…. Wait, he calls himself Dante the Unspoken? Do you have to call him that every time you say his name, or is just Dante okay? I know he has to work on his soul sucking but does that mean we have to attend every single one of his exorcisms in Brooklyn? This is exactly the type of relationship your friends will bring up, much to your embarrassment, for years. Maybe commit social suicide for a guy that isn’t draining you every time you go out.
Mermaid That’s a fucking manatee, idiot!
Witch I’m sorry… warlock… wizard? By far your friends’ personal favorite, he always seems to come prepared and know exactly how to fix a problem the second it occurs. He seems to magically know exactly what you need and always dresses to the nines. Sure, he kind of steals the limelight, but everyone loves him! The fact that, after your breakup, he was cursed to be a beast until meeting his actual one true love was a bit harsh, but you did break up over Twitter DM soooo. 2
Jersey Devil Not the cutest guy you’ve ever dated, but there is something about him. He’s got an air of mystery about him and looks a lot better than the awful pictures on his Tinder. None of your friends believe you when you tell them how great he is, but you’ve seen it and that’s all that matters. Giving him a chance and discovering what really makes him tick might be worth it, but you’ll also have to live in New Jersey if you get married.
Regular Human Kyle is… cool. I mean not cool cool but the guys seem to like him? I mean, I’m honestly not getting it. You just broke up with a vampire, how are you dating Kyle? Is this a rebound thing? Oh, maybe he’s a warlock too? No? Oh no that’s cool, seems like a chill guy. I’m very happy for you.
Angel You made out with him once and now he’s promised to protect you for all of eternity! Which is great and all, but could he not be so judge-y when he comes out drinking with us? Sometimes you just want to wear sweats, but that seems impossible when your angel boyfriend wears three-piece suits at 8 AM on a Sunday. Breaking up seems like the only option, but you’d probably be banished to hell and have to deal with your demon ex, which is equally shitty.
Werewolf Absolutely perfect, if you can ignore him becoming a terrifying hell beast under the glow of the moon once a month. You’re not usually into the overly masculine type but there is something so alluring about trying something new. Considering the guys you’ve dated, though, he seems like everything you could ever need. Low chance of him murdering you, mostly normal, but still interesting enough that you have something to brood over. He might be worth the plunge… maybe just remember to check for fleas after his transformations.
Frankenstein He doesn’t talk much, but that’s honestly okay. Sometimes the strong silent type is just what a girl needs after a funeral march’s worth of talkative guys. The cold unfeeling dead human flesh is a bit of a turn off, but you dated Kyle soooo you obviously aren’t bothered by unfeeling humans. Death, like the actual factual manifestation of death: Geez, a bit dark, don’t you think? Like Christ, I get it, people die every day. No need for your boyfriend to shit on you crying over the dog dying in that movie. Honestly, maybe you should call up the Jersey Devil, because you are falling into quite the hole. If it makes you feel better, it’s not like this one will be the one that will kill you. That’s just too damn obvious. Sure, your lifespan has been significantly limited by the creatures you’ve decided to date, but it’s important to remember we still love you, and if you die one of your friends will totally have to name their kid after you! Normally this is where we would wrap this list up, but if you made it through the entire list and honestly—wow!—or really even found any portion of this list applicable, you are almost certainly dead. Happy hunting!
ien Ch l A n A d e ir u u’ve Acq
Caring For Your New Alien Baby So your house was selected to be visited by a UFO, and you figured this out and began to prepare for your imminent abduction and gathered your materials to battle with the greater species, and then when they came to abduct you and your family, you managed to fight them off with great vigor, but in the process, your foes managed to leave without one of their creatures with their big eyes and their bulb-shaped heads, and now you’ve ended up housing a small, (alien) bundle of joy! Wow. No matter what anyone says, no one is ever quite ready for the challenges of (alien) parenting! Well, that’s what we’re here for! Read on to find out some tips on just how to care for your newly acquired small alien!
1. Hold them.
After all, even though it is a part of an alien species, it still is indeed a baby, and babies need love and care and a good amount of TLC. Hold that baby, swaddle it! Not with cotton blankets, cotton will cause your baby to combust and die. Only metallic nylon will do for this alien species! Make sure to remind it that you need it more than it’ll ever need you.
2. Give it a name!
The best part of acquiring your little bundle of slimy grey mass is that you get to name the little goon! Make sure to keep it something close to its roots, but it can be as modern or classic as you wish it to be! Try Googling “Top 20 Alien Names of the Year”. That’ll be sure to give you some ideas! Be aware that it might take a little while for your little alien to begin responding to this name. They were given names in their native tongue before that and changing their name out of the blue might confuse them. Don’t be afraid if your baby grows distant from you as it acclimates to its new life on this planet.
3. Make sure it gets its shots, and test for allergies. Once again, like any baby, alien babies, too, must protect themselves with the wonders of human medicine! Make sure to take your little snook’ums to the doctor often to make sure they are healthy and happy! Make sure your doctor isn’t a spoilsport tattletale who will inform your nation’s government about the cuddly wuddly invasive species you have given purchase on our planet [see section 7, how to silence a liability]. Your special gift from outer space will probably require rarer, and more expensive shots and treatments, as they are not yet adjusted to the illnesses or allergens available on this planet, but that won’t matter, as you’ll do anything for your little bundle of gook!
4. Put on TV.
Remember, nothing too violent! Aliens are easily impressionable, but boy, do they love TV! While you may think having it watch something about aliens is a great idea, it is not. Please avoid shows about the alien species at all costs. Please. Avoid the History Channel.
5. Do NOT stick it in the microwave.
Raising a child lacking bodily structures analogous to our own—except a mouth that screams, screams, screams!—CAN be trying. Additionally, some of you in areas with large whale populations may find that your baby takes on the hue and texture of local decadence: whale blubber. However, do NOT put your alien baby in the microwave. DON’T. This will not make this or the pounding in your head OR the redness in your eyes OR the relationship with your earth children (or spouse) better! It will only make EVERYTHING worse. Unlike human children, aliens babies are not suited for microwaves, and you should be warned that their large, bulbous heads will explode when exposed to excessive heat. If we hear of another case of this happening, we will call Alien Protective Services on you, and you will never be able to own another alien child again. You have been warned.
6. Love it like it were your own blood-child. Your small bundle of slippery amorphous joy has been separated from its home planet and family and cannot go back. Thus, it is important that you take on this little one like it is your own, or else it will not be able to acclimate to life on Earth as well as it should, and your family might be in for a slew of trouble.
7. Remember not to tell the NSA, CIA, FBI, or any other government agency.
All these agencies want to do is take your small alien baby away. You wouldn’t want that, would you? Don’t you dare utter a word. (Insta selfies are fine.)
8. Ignore your wife’s side-eye when you pay more attention to your new alien baby than your own bloodhumanoid children.
We know. It’s hard. Your wife will glare at you from across the room as your little one tugs on
your pant leg and you shoo him away because you’re dealing with your new, special baby in your arms. She will grow resentful of this, and take your son away, reminding him that he’s “Mommy’s Favorite”. She will tell you to “grow up”, and that you are worthless as a parent, but it’s okay. Little Danny never needed you quite as much as Xeep_3863 needs you. You’re all it has here on Earth. And, when your wife eventually gets tired of you neglecting your own children for this baby you never even asked for, it will be all you have as well. Look out for each other. It’s a scary world out there.
And last but not least: 9. Have fun!
It’s only one to three in a lifetime that these opportunities present themselves. Being the new parent to one of these incredible, unidentifiable creatures is something many will never experience or even come close to understanding. It will be a learning experience for you, as well, so cherish it. Now, go on and take care of your newly acquired alien child. You are in for a ride!
An Open Letter To
The Loch Ness Monster
Ness, baby. How long’s it been, huh? Forty years? Fifty? My hands, atrophied by age, shake as I write this letter on hotel stationery. After half a century, my life has dragged me back to this place—I can never escape you. Do you still think about our time together, Ness? I do. All those summers spent on the loch, desperately chasing the idea of love - or the idea of a really fuckin’ cool lake monster, I was never quite sure. Those sexuallycharged glances across the lake. All that time spent playing hard to get only made the fire in my heart (and my loins) rage all the brighter. We had some wild rides in those summers before the war, Ness. Remember all those times at the drive-in movies, late that summer? We shared a popcorn—my hand and your tentacle brushed, ever so gently, and that was the beginning. Do you remember the first time we made love? You, with your four inch-long razor sharp teeth. Me, with my scuba suit and my specially-made steelreinforced condoms. God, you had a great set of lake lizard tiddies. Still do, if an old man can be candid. But that’s just it, Nessy. I’m an old man now. When I left for the war, you told me you’d be waiting when I got back. And you were—but I was a foolish coward. I threw it all away, Ness. I threw it all away because I was afraid of the love that a young man and a 300-foot long lake lizard could have for eacthrh other in this cruel, cruel world. I made a life for myself in the states after the war—a good life, a wife and kids. But I would give it all away for five more minutes with those seaweed green eyes; that hard, scaly skin; that sweet, sweet lizard booty you could bounce a dime off of. By now, I’m sure you’ve moved on. I hope you’re happy now, I really do. I hope you’ve found yourself a man who satisfies you both emotionally and sexually, and maybe even financially. I don’t know if you buy things, as you are a 300-foot long lake lizard with tentacles instead of feet, but even I know a girl deserves a new pair of Gucci every once in a while, even if they do have to be a size 3100 and completely waterproof. I miss you, Ness. And that’s okay; we both went our own ways. We had to have room for ourselves to grow—I needed to learn to become a real man, not the young, wistful soul you knew me as, and America is no place for a 300-foot long lake lizard with tentacles instead of feet. But I hope you would be proud of the man I’ve become, Ness. I know I’m proud of the 300-foot long lake lizard that you’ve become. And if you ever find yourself stateside, don’t be a stranger. I promise, all the old hardware still works just as well as it did fifty years ago. You bring the wine, I’ll bring the steel reinforced condoms. Sound like a deal?
5 Liminal Planes
You HAVE to Visit 5. Hofstra’s South Campus During Winter Break
Hustling and bustling for most of the semester, what once seemed like a safe and all-around adequate learning environment has sunk into a deep purgatory. The wind tends to blow just a little bit harder without the thousand of student-corpses shambling around. You can also scream all you want when your professors finally post grades, knowing that no one can here your failures! All in all, a great place to have a meltdown that won’t count in the morning.
4. Roosevelt Field Mall Right After it Opens Ever been so desperate to get those last minute birthday gifts you get to the mall at ten in the morning on a weekday? Pft, yeah, well I mean, me neither. But seriously though, the halls are empty. If anything screams post-apocalyptic purgatory, it’s the deserted stores and dead-eyed employees. Their lips say “may I help you?”, their faces scream “kill me”. Unlike the souls of the unfortunate few salespeople, however, one thing you won’t be missing are the lines! The perfect location to contemplate your lonely existence, as well as buy a shitty keychain for that friend that you aren’t really that friendly with.
3. That One Park by Your Parents House After Dark, You Know the One Remember all those great summer afternoons when you were a kid? Being pushed on the swing by your dad, playing in the sandbox, face-planting into the wood chips, going to the hospital because you got a wood chip in your eye, good times! Now though, it’s the spot to be at. Some say you can still hear the echoes of childhood innocence fading away, and the ambiance of long-gone nightmares brought to life again makes this location both nostalgic and enticing. Fun for the whole family!
2. The Bolla Market on Hempstead Turnpike, 2-4AM They know exactly what you’ve been doing. They know why you’re there at that hour. Don’t even try to hide it. They don’t give a shit, honestly, but they know.
1. Any Airport at Any Time Okay, no one really likes being in an airport. It never feels like you’re in a real place, just a half-way point between home and your weird aunt’s house that always kind of smells like maple syrup even though she’s never making pancakes. There are some serious benefits, however. Take a gander at the worryingly large murals decorating desolate walls, spend exorbitant amounts of money on the finest kiosks fast-food moguls have to offer. Better yet, you can even cause quite a commotion by yelling “Unattended bag!”, at any point in time or any location, making for instant entertainment! Way better than any boring familial excursions. Seriously though, why does it always smell like maple syrup? It’s kind of worrying. 8
6 Ghost Can ’t
Spots In My House Where My Daughter ’s
There are certain aspects of life you never really engage with until you have to... until you’re forced to. I know that now. A lot of people say they want to understand death. They say they want to learn to embrace it, and explore the beauty in it. They’re full of shit. You don’t want to understand. You don’t want to understand what it’s like to live every day under a black cloud of memories that hurt too much to remember, and yet far more to bury deep inside yourself, the shame of trying to forget how happy you used to be. You don’t want to watch your little girl wither away for two goddamn years, to watch her shrink into nothing right before your eyes. Try moving on from that. Try picking up the pieces after that. It’s the hardest thing you’ll ever have to do; and it doesn’t get any easier when your baby girl’s spirit chooses to root itself in your home rather than crossover to an eternal afterlife. At this point, I’m just thankful I have a few spots I can escape to when the ghost of my beautiful dead daughter becomes too much to deal with.
1. The Basement We never let Cassie into the basement when she was alive because of the rat infestation, but once the crowdfunding came together for her funeral costs we were finally able to fix up that chintzy paneling and afford a decent exterminator. Now, I’ve got the recliner and my Playstation down there and, while it isn’t much yet, I’m thinking it could become a certified Man Cave in due time. Dr. Towns says that an important part of grieving is giving yourself space to work through things at an appropriate pace. It’s important not to rush the process, he says, which is why I’m holding off on snagging a pool table until I can find a regulation sized one in red felt. Patience is key, he says.
2. The Garage Cassie had been scared of the garage ever since that bat got trapped in there a few years back, so I knew I wouldn’t have to worry about her apparition running around in there and 10
reminding me of what my life once was. Dr. Towns mentioned that a lot of men deal with grieving by taking up projects, so I figured now was as good a time as any to work on the old Mustang again. She’s an absolute beauty, a cherry red ’69 with the original drum brakes, a dual exhaust, and a V6 cylinder engine that still purrs like the kitten we promised to get Cassandra for her 9th birthday. I would give anything to have been able to bring that cat home and see the look in Cassie’s eyes, but I guess I’ll just have to settle for being the envy of all my buddies once the Cherry Bomb is back in roadworthy condition.
3. Underneath the Patio Cassie would never dare go under here back when things were good and life mattered. She was pretty sure there were monsters living under the house, and I wasn’t exactly rushing to tell her otherwise. She had such an imagination, my tiny adventurer, and the last thing I wanted was her crawling around down there and getting hurt. Pretty ironic, all things considered. Dr. Towns says it’s important to maintain goals and remember that I still have things in life to work towards. Writing down notes of things I hope to accomplish is a big way to look ahead, he says. I woke up under the patio last week with a sticky note in my shirt pocket that said “Find a cure to cancer. Do whatever it takes.” I have a degree in social work from University of Phoenix Online.
4. The Spare Bedroom We usually kept this room locked up when Cassie was still with us, and she generally knew better than to come in. Jess keeps all her sewing and knitting stuff in here, and Cassie was just always getting into some kind of trouble whenever she snuck in. Just too many pins and needles for such a mischievous kid, ya know? But there was this one time – God, I wish I’d taken a picture of this – when Cassie snuck in while Jess was taking a shower, and wrapped an entire ball of yarn around herself.
An entire ball! She had to be about five, maybe six, and she was so caught up in the yarn that she could barely move! Eventually I find her, and she’s wriggling around on the carpet just covered in yarn, and she looks up me with her little gap tooth smile and goes, “Daddy! Daddy! Look! I’m a Casserpillar!” I mean how clever is that?! She was so smart, my little Casserpillar. I come in here sometimes, and I lay right down on the spot of the floor where I found her wriggling and laughing and smiling. At first, I worried that spending time in here would be intrusive towards Jess’s own grieving, but ironically, it would seem that I spend a lot more time in here than she does now. For the most part Jess just sleeps these days. Dr. Towns says this is a common side-effect of depression, and while I wish I could spend more time with Jess, I also I understand why she would want to spend days at a time in the dark of our bedroom. When you walk into the living room every morning to find the TV turned to Cartoon Network and the ghost of your only daughter practicing ballet, every moment from then on out just kind of feels like a waking nightmare.
5. The Minivan Since the liminal plane containing my daughter’s soul seems to only really reach the 3900 sq. feet that make up our home, backyard, and driveway, I’ve recently begun parking the minivan in the street. I spent most nights out in the van during that first month without Cassie, though back then I was actually driving around town, sometimes until dawn. At this point, I don’t even bother bringing the keys with me, just a bottle and a book. While it’s true that I’d do just about anything to forget for a minute what has become of my once-charmed existence, there’s a lot of misunderstanding about my time out by the curb. Honestly – and this is something Dr. Towns sort of refuses to acknowledge, which has been a real point of frustration for me – the drinking isn’t meant to numb the pain. There’s no numbing this pain. There’s no muting this roaring deficit in my being. It really just comes down to this: If you’ve ever read Koontz, you know that his masterful storytelling goes hand-in-hand with a little sauce. Them’s just facts. Like I’ve told Dr. Towns over and over, Jack Daniels and Dean Koontz were my go-to duo long before my world came crashing down. I just happen to need them now more than ever.
6. The Attic None of us ever really went into the attic much when Cassie was alive, what with all the loose insulation and fiberglass up here. That stuff doesn’t really matter so much now. I go up here sometimes to just think, to process. Lately, I’ve actually started bringing my laptop – just to get a little writing done, keep the ol’ ticker in shape. Dr. Towns says it’s healthy to exercise the parts of the brain that we often come to neglect over time. I was about halfway finished with a screenplay based of off Dean Koontz’s 1983 bestseller Phantoms around the time we found out Jess was pregnant. I had been working for Jess’s dad at the time, helping him sell car parts out of the family shop, but every night after my shift, like clockwork, I would just sit down and immediately get so absorbed in that screenplay. Even during the first couple months of the pregnancy, I’d be writing for hours every night – I had such a strong vision for how everything would turn out, and I even had this idea in my head that Ray Liota could play the enigmatic Sherriff Bryce Hammond. Jess would be right there next to me, knitting little caps and booties. It’s amazing how time flies, isn’t it? Ten years seems like a lifetime ago now. Though, I guess in the case of my only daughter Cassandra, it kind of was. It’s stuffy up here, and I’ve developed some pretty bad skin irritation, but I’d rather scratch myself bloody than watch the ghost of my daughter retrace the steps of a life that was stolen from her. It’s like... it’s like watching some little girl playing the role of my sweet pea. She looks just like her, and sounds just like her. She calls out to me sometimes, and she’s so happy. She’s not in pain, either; it’s as if the last two-and-a-half years never happened. It’s like an alternate universe. Sometimes, I’ll get up in the middle of the night and in my half-sleep, I’ll find her standing in the hallway. I’ll reach down to touch her head, thinking maybe she had a bad dream. But, my hand passes right through her. It’s like losing her all over again, and every time, just like that, I remember that it’s my bad dream. It’s my never-ending bad dream.
Contents Front Cover
Averie St. Germaine
12 Supernatural Creatures You’ll Date by Jesse Saunders
So You’ve Acquired An Alien Child... by Ashley Vernola
Ad by Veronica Toone
An Open Letter to the Loch Ness Monster by Jordan Hopkins Art by Gillian Pitzer
Art by Bethany Foster
Top 5 Liminal Planes You Have to Visit! by Gillian Pitzer
Ad by Zachary Johnson
6 Spots in My House Where My Daughter’s Ghost Can’t Find Me by James Sweeney
Art by Gillian Pitzer
Staff Editors in Chief
Heather Levinsky Zachary Johnson
Assistant Editor Ashley Vernola
Head Writer Matthew Tanzosh
Design Director Gillian Pitzer
Business Manager Peter Soucy
Faculty Advisor Amy Karofsky
Copy Editors James Factora Ashley Vernola Noah Lowe
Published on Feb 7, 2017