Wednesday, February 8, 2012

From the October Country: The Flesh Sempstresses

Atop a wave-swept tower of rock on the shores of the Cold Dim Sea stands a foreboding edifice of granite. Block-like and unadorned, this building looks as if the wind and rain carved it from the adjacent stone. Aside from the glimpse of a lit window amidst the perpetual storms or a blood-chilling scream doused by the howling wind, the structure shows little sign of occupancy.

This is the home of the Flesh Sempstresses, the feared tailors of Nightmare who dwell outside that realm’s borders so as to have close access to their preferred medium of creation. Harvesting unwitting travelers and wayward animals alike, the Sempstresses make unsettling patchwork creations born of the sliced flesh and severed appendages of their victims. Using methods unknown outside of Nightmare, these couturiers make unique monsters for their own pleasure and to export back to the Terrible Places. On occasion, either by accident or design, one of the Sempstresses’ projects escapes their towering abode to wreak havoc on either side of the barrier.

Few have seen the Flesh Sempstresses in person, or rather those that do seldom survive the encounter. The witnesses that do live through their meeting with the skin tailors report that they dress in antique gowns of lace with leather (or another preserved hide) accents and disguise their visages with painted china masks. They are never without at least one of their horrific amalgams of human and animal parts trailing close behind.

Scholars in the October Country suggest that there may a connection between the Flesh Sempstresses and the skinners, but this is likely due to the craftwork shared by the two groups. If this is not the case, it may be that the Flesh Sempstresses were once skinners and rose to their current role through practice and longevity. It could be just as true that the first skinners were failed Flesh Sempstresses or were created by the macabre tailors long ago and now seek to imitate their makers.

Although the Flesh Sempstresses never leave their domicile, their creations can be encountered almost anywhere. It is widely believed by the commoners of the October Country that jaded and decadent nobles procure the Sempstresses creations for their own debased menageries or blood-stained arenas.
Here on Earth, the Pope Lick Monster of Kentucky is widely believed (by those aware of the autumnal lands, that is) to be an escaped--or perhaps a released--creation of the Flesh Sempstresses who crossed the barrier. The current location of the creature, or indeed if it still lives, is unknown.


p said...


Michael Curtis said...

No, it's sempstress. Had you bothered to look in a dictionary, rather than troll, you'd have learned something.