The Bats in the Walls

By Juan Miguel Marín

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HouseByTheSea75 is online. 11:25 am

TagalogMantraOM is online.

TagalogMantraOM: Wassup HouseByTheSea75? Got my email?

Me: Yep. Your current Best Friend Forever writes inspired by the “very commonplace incident of the cracking of wallpaper late at night, and the chain of imaginings resulting from it.” Sorry, but your fictional rats in the walls can’t compare with the real bats in my attic. No cracking wallpaper but plenty of bats fluttering around within the walls, crashing and banging against them. Keeps me up all night. Your new BFF may like spending time at this old beach house. I’m sure it will result in an inspiring chain of imaginings.

TagalogMantraOM: I e-mailed you that as answer to your question. You ask, why read fiction when “reality can be so much more mysterious and fascinating.” I answer by quote-texting Him, those “of broader intellect know that there is no sharp distinction betwixt the real and the unreal.”

TagalogMantraOM, aka Ramon Aguilar, knows I don’t care for fiction, yet, every month, he insists I should read his current “best spiritual fiction ever.” In turn, I insist he should read whatever historical scholar I’m currently hooked on. Last month, he kept sending me Stephen King passages. I quote-texted Erich Von Daniken back at him. Now some pulp writer took the spiritual king’s place.

TagalogMantraOM: I still can’t understand why you live at that old house when your parents’ condo is also by the beach.

Me: It’s close to the Jesuits’ library. I can walk over there any time, day or night. By the way, since you’re into science, check out Told you Lemuria was real. Anyways, got to leave for class. TTYL.

HousebytheSea75 is offline.

Class does not begin until later, but I wanted to finish the book on underwater archaeology. Couldn’t keep my eyes off the pictures comparing the recently found ruins under the Devil’s Triangle, aka Bermuda Triangle, with those under the Indian and Pacific oceans. The author, a Bombay University geologist, argues the granite and old-metamorphic rocks submerged under Ceylon and South India conceal ruins similar to those archaeologists call the “Bimini Road”. Ramon thinks it is just a sea rock formation that looks like a paved road. I disagree. If there’s a triangle with San Juan, Puerto Rico at one vertex, Bermuda and Bimini Islands at the other two, why can’t there be one right across our home? Dravidian civilization once reached this outermost peninsula. Tamil mystical poems draw from Dravidian texts to describe Lemuria as occupying a triangular region.

We both saw last night’s documentary and listened to scholars debate whether the Bimini Road forms part of the long-lost Atlantis. One of them identified it as a Lemurian road. But Lemuria, if it ever existed, was way over here in the Pacific. For sure, that road must be the ruins of something. I should ask Brother Pedro or Brother Niels. The Jesuits running our highly selective prep school require us, “the most intelligent sons of the South Asian elite and future contributors to society,” to be as highly educated as them. Maybe I can impress the brothers with my interest in history. Or at least, I could get one of them to talk about something interesting in Classics or English class and spend less time on boring grammar drills.


“Brother Pedro, did you see last night the classical archaeology documentary?” I asked, contorting my face to its most serious appearance. By the smirks of my colleagues, I could tell I wasn’t entirely successful.

“We don’t have a television at our monastic house,” he answered. “Our religious congregation encourages its members to read, walk or spend time with another brother during recreation hours. What was it about?”

“Classical Sanskrit sources discussing South India’s geographical relation with the Caribbean.”

(Not exactly true, but close. It was mostly about evidence showing indigenous people once communicated with extraterrestrial civilizations.)

“It claimed that under the Atlantic Ocean, one could find the ruins of Atlantis,” I added.

Raising his brows, he said, “Did they also discuss purported evidence of extraterrestrial civilizations?”

“Uh…only as a hypothesis.”

“All right,” he said, his intonation announcing that he fell again for the interesting question trap. Since he began to ramble, I mean lecture, I opened my laptop.

“We can trace folktales about the Devil’s Triangle, located in the middle of the Atlantic, back to the early colonial period. The triangle crosses the Wide Sargasso Sea, title of Jean Rhys’ famous novel. You read gothic Jane Eyre for Brother Niels’ class. Well, Rhys’ novel re-tells Jane Eyre from the point of view of the mysterious madwoman in the attic, the one who sets Rochester’s house walls on fire. As you know, Rochester marries a West Indian woman, only to discover that she carries madness in her blood. Rhys’ feminist re-telling elucidates the origins of her madness.”

TagalogMantraOM is online. 1:16 pm

“Leaving fiction behind, during the colonial period, the time that produced the Jesuit ratio studiorum, the one that now requires that all of you future Jesuit high school graduates take Greek and Latin, our Jesuit predecessor Athanasius Kircher decided to find out how much of world folklore and mythology reflected reality and how much reflected imaginative literature.”

Brother Pedro approached the shelf and took one of the centuries-old volumes and opened it about the middle. I liked that about this school: a real Jesuit education, ancient textbooks included.

“Kircher never thought of Atlantis as fanciful post-Platonic creation. Instead, he approached the myth as a hypothesis to be confirmed or disproved by actual expeditions. By the seventeenth century, Jesuit missionaries reached all corners of the earth. Kircher’s Jesuit brother, Hippolito Desideri, became the first European scholar of Tibetan culture. A few decades earlier, future saint Francis Xavier and his companions reached here and founded our school before travelling across the rest of the South Indian peninsula and the East Indies. These and other Jesuit missionaries gathered data leading Kircher to conclude that massive underwater formations, some of them probably depicted in the documentary yet not submerged during his time, could not be explained away as the result of stone randomly polished by erosion. This map you see here, drawn from Egyptian sources, inspired him and many of his contemporaries, mostly Spanish conquistadors, to seek those ruins, the most famous being Juan Ponce de León, admiral under the Spanish Emperor Phillip the Second. As I assume you know, Juan Carlos, your home country was named after Philip.”

“Certainly. It is well known back at home,” I said.

TagalogMantraOM: U at Bro Pedro’s?

Me: Yep. Did you know the Philippines got their name from a Spanish emperor?

TagalogMantraOM: Of course, Mr. History Buff. Everybody knows that.

Me: I had no idea.

TagalogMantraOM: You should. As the only Filipino boys in this school, we have a duty to represent our country. You’re supposed to be the one with the brains. I’m the one with the looks. 😉

Me: Nope. I got the brains AND the looks.

TagalogMantraOM: Ha ha. So, you got the brother to ramble?

Me: Only for a few minutes. He figured it out. Oh wait. He’s still rambling. Ponce de León “set out to Bimini in search of the Fountain of Youth, but never found it.” Didn’t we see an X-Files episode showing Ponce de León found the fountain of youth? The admiral lives now in Florida as a half-plant/half human hybrid. Wait, the brother’s back to the Sargasso Sea.

“Many ships were lost probably due to the heavy accumulation of sargasso, marine algae, which ensnared ships. Moreover, maritime winds there either do not blow for days or, when they do, they form hurricanes. Hindu folktales from where we live, mostly written in the vernacular Tamil, but also some Sanskrit sources, have similar narratives. They all go back to the Platonic dialogues. And since you all wish to read Plato’s Critias and Timaeus someday, you’d better learn your Greek and Latin declensions now. So, open your textbooks to page 126. Rahul, identify all the words in the first passage declined in either the accusative or the genitive….”

Me: Wanna come with me to the public library? I need to pick up Plato and a Scott Elliot guy to read at home tonight.

TagalogMantraOM: Sure. ttyl

TagalogMantraOM is offline. 2:30 pm


TagalogMantraOM is online. 12:01 am

Me: Scott’s story sounds as fictional as your pulp writer, though at places, he sounds convincing. Quote-texting him:

    “…For readers unacquainted with the progress that has been made in recent years by earnest students of occultism attached to the Theosophical Society, the significance of the statement embodied in the following pages would be misapprehended without some preliminary explanation. Historical research has depended for western civilisation hitherto, on written records of one kind or another. When literary memoranda have fallen short, stone monuments have sometimes been available, and fossil remains have given us a few unequivocal, though inarticulate, assurances concerning the antiquity of the human race, but modern culture has lost sight of or has overlooked possibilities connected with the investigation of past events….”

He accepts the myths of Atlantis, and the supposedly earlier civilization of Lemuria, as historically true. He quotes Plato’s commentator and testifies by the prophets of the Egyptians, who assert that these particulars [which are narrated by Plato] are written on pillars which are still preserved, Atlantis is neither a mere myth nor unadorned history. Plato mixes what he read about with what he knew firsthand. Athenian citizens, devotees of the goddess of wisdom went to war against the Atlanteans, devotees of the sea god Poseidon.

TagalogMantraOM: I doubt the Egyptians happened to call their sea god exactly like the Greek god. Seems everyone thinks their gods are the only true ones.

Me: I agree with you there. Anyways, the eldest of the child gods, the titan Atlas, Poseidon’s twin, was made rightful king of the entire island and Poseidon’s domain the ocean beyond the extremity of the island towards the Pillars of Heracles, was hence called “Atlantic”. The other four pairs of divine twins – Ampheres and Evaemon, Mneseus and Autochthon, Elasippus and Mestor, and Azaes and Diaprepes….

TagalogMantraOM: I should read it then. I’m stuck on level three of Age of Mythology. Poseidon turns into a crazy psycho and I have to unite Greek, Egyptian and Norse civilizations to battle against him.

Me: Shit. They’re back at it again.

TagalogMantraOM: Who’s at what again?

Me: The bats in the walls. But their chirping has changed.

TagalogMantraOM: Ha ha ha. You should read the story I told you about. You going insane, dude.

Me: No, man, really.

TagalogMantraOM: Really what?

Me: The bats.

TagalogMantraOM: The bats what?

Me: Their crazy twittering, tonight sounds like, like words.

TagalogMantraOM: Ha. ha. That’s pareidolia: you are finding patterns where there are none.

Me: I know. But shit, they really sound like words. They’re saying…. Can’t understand a word of it. Pun intended. 🙂

TagalogMantraOM: They do sing in syllables. Check this out.

Me: That’s really cool. Though these are creepier. Their syllables seem to form the word “Juaaaanqui.”LOL.

TagalogMantraOM: JUANQUI??? LOL. They calling you by your nickname? Only your ma and your grandma call you that.

Me: I didn’t hear anything when last week one of them dared out to come out of its bat-cave, bat-hole, whatever, an opening in the ceiling, then flew into the lighted room. Probably seeking food. They drink blood, right?

TagalogMantraOM: Just the big vampire bats. The small ones just eat fruits. You got the big ones? You shouldn’t be sleeping in the attic.

Me: Oh no, these are furry little creatures, look like flying mice. At least the one that flew out did when I killed it with a broom. A bleeding, dying mouse. Poor little fucker.

TagalogMantraOM: You are despicable. The Buddhas must have deducted like a thousand points from your karmic account. By the end of this Kali-Yuga, you will still be reincarnating. Have fun watching Kali destroy the world.

HouseByTheSea75: There they go again. JUAANQUI. lol. Sounds like a ghost movie, now. I should just put some poison on that hole in the wall. Get rid of them once and for all.

TagalogMantraOM: You’ll be reborn as a laboratory rat. A guinea pig. Worse, a furry little rabbit at the mercy of those who test new razors at Gillette.

Me: Aright. It’s past midnight. Too late to try to convert me to vegetarianism again. ZZZZZ. Gnight.

TagalogMantraOM: Sweet dreams.

HouseByTheSea75 is offline. 12:22 am

I get the ladder and climb up to the bat hole, but can’t see anything inside. Yuck! There’s some kind of drool coming out of it. Bat’s pee? No. Smells more like fish. And now, there’s a little something crawling out, more like slithering, its drool making the floor slippery. I should get the broom and kill the flying mouse-thing.

Wait. Are those eyes? The mouse-thing’s eyes look like those of the dead fish in the supermarket. Bats don’t have eyes, do they? Blind as a bat. They use sonar, or echolocation, those sound waves when they fly. The last one I killed had slits for eyes. But this one got eyes like…like that black goldfish I once had. Felix.

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I loved him for days. Then he bored me to death. Felix wasn’t like a puppy you can play with. Just stared at you with bulging eyes or opened its mouth to blow a bubble at you. Then it got that disgusting disease, its scales peeling off to reveal the pale skin of a badly-cooked fish, a fish permeated throughout with bacteria and contaminants. Gross. I had to flush the ugly thing down the toilet. And now this new little fucker looks almost like Felix.


That thing sure called my name. Pareidolia my ass. I better get the broom.

There’s more liquid draining out of the hole. The stench is vile!


One of the bats fell to the floor. Hey, wait a minute, that’s not a bat. That is really a fish. With wings. Flying fish?


Another fell out. And another. And another. And another two. Now, I own an attic infested with batfishes. If they keep flapping their wings and splashing in that puddle, they are going to mess up all my walls. Idiots. Someone please tell them fish can’t fly.


Did that one opened his mouth and say something? If you’re some kind of monster fish, at least communicate telepathically. You are not equipped with either lungs or vocal chords. You need them, you know? Plus, let me be the one to tell you. Fish can’t fly. If you all are indeed flying fish, all you can do is jump out of the water and hover above the sea for a few seconds.


That one did open his mouth. Oh God, that other one is really flying.

Actually, that’s quite impressive.


They all fell to the floor.

OK. Show’s over. Since you are out of the water, will you please just suffocate? You’ll make my killing job easier.


Those glassy eyes do look like Felix. They, and Felix, have better-looking eyes than the dead seafood at the supermarket. For sure, Felix was much nicer to look at. His eyes were so much more…enthralling.

Suddenly, these ones here start chirping, like, well, like bats. They pick up to the air, flying around in a perfect circle, and glide back inside the wall’s opening.

OK. I admit it. I’m impressed. Just for that, I won’t kill you today. I’ll sure have to clean the smell or my room will stink for days.

I get the mop instead of the broom. Clean up everything and back to my books and maybe a nap before starting grammar homework.

Their twittering grows softer, more like a murmur or whisper. I can barely discern one of them peering deep into my room. Its eyes, bulging, disembodied, remain perched upon the edge. Its pupils, dark, abyssal, make me immobile, transfixing my soul.


Exhausted. I can’t sleep yet can’t stay awake. I’ll have to deal with the fish later. Soon will be sunrise. Latin homework is due in a few hours. The Jesuits keep the library open all night for insomniacs in need of a refuge. I should go there. Or maybe I should stay. The little creatures’ song now sounds like a lullaby. Like an ancient lullaby from the time of yore, the era of Atlantis. Of Lemuria….

I need some coffee.


I love this library. Thanks, Saint Francis Xavier! Few other places have wireless-enabled desktops with access to any book in European virtual libraries, the latest, fastest computers bought for the sons of South Asia’s richest men, next to dusty old tomes penned by Jesuit brothers, copies of the original ones at the Bibliotheca Vaticana. Right there lies Matteo Ricci’s Xiguo Jifa, the Art of Memory, used by the sixteenth century missionary to China to seduce those studying for exams, required of anyone aspiring to join the Confucian elite. And on top of it lies a collection of epigrams taken from Hindu wisdom texts, used by the first missionaries to prepare for debates with Tamil religious leaders. And right on top of it lies some tome with no title on the spine. And right on top of it lies…a freaking fish!

I succumb to dizzy slumber. The infernal ichthyoids flutter their vestigial wings and alight on Athanasius Kircher. Opera. Physica Curiosa by Gaspar Schott, also Jesuit. Liber Monstrorum by Anonymous. Original Latin and Anglo-Hibernian Latin version from the Beowulfiana.

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Who the hell are these…people? Incestuous copulations between beastly mermaids and batrachian cephalopods. Mmm. Are these akin to what Bro. Niels calls the Grendel archetype from the Beowulf narrative? As an infant, the future warrior Beowulf emerged from his underwater cradle only to return again to kill Grendel’s mom. Someone scribbled in modern English:

    Seize as your bow the great weapon of the Upanishad/And set in it an arrow sharpened by meditation./Draw it with a mind that has attained the ultimate essence./The target cannot die: kill it./The mantra OM is the bow, the arrow the self./The god its target, it is said. /It must be pierced by one who is not careless. !!!!!!!!

That’s from the Hindu Upanishads we read for comparative religion class. As for the Latin, I could try to translate. Incipit liber monstrorum de diversibus generibus. Thus begins the book of monsters of various kinds. Can’t remember if monstrorum is in the genitive or the accusative. “Out of the dark corners of the earth you begged me to reveal whether these various kinds or monsters are to be believed in [have faith in?]…the monstrous offspring raised throughout the deserts and the islands of the Ocean and the recesses of the farthest mountains…who strike the greatest terror of fear in humankind….” My weak attempts at translation may not be entirely faithful to the author, but at least I can capture the horror of the pitiful Jesuit.”Quivering, you have cast me into the cesspool among the ones of the deep, from these darkest corners of the earth towards another vast abyss of the flood.”

Can’t concentrate. My unfocused eyes only stare at oblivion. Their glazed eyes do focus. On me. Damn you, rubbery bat-wannabes, horror pet-shop escapees. You feel superior just because your membranous wings allowed you to crawl from your tanks and now sweep all over my tomes of ancient lore. Only God knows from what foul fish tank you escaped. You still reek of that putrid water from which you were born. Stop drooling over my grimoires, you sloppy frogs! Yes, your bulgy scabby eyes betray your obscene, sloppy frog origins. Frogs slopping like blubbering deformed babies once locked away by your own mothers so that your contagious cutaneous disease would not infect her healthy offspring. Yet, you escaped your confinement and then rejoiced when your mother and siblings noticed the peeling of their own skin.


Perchance these creatures arose only as a figment of my imagination, conjured by the remembrance of Felix in order to haunt me. When regret embodies itself, it chooses its form from among the many offered by Hell’s morphological cornucopia. Why not choose an extra-dimensional ichthyoid incarnation?

Juaaanqui, return with us to the era of Atlantis and Lemuria.

WHAT? Now, that did get my attention. I am fully awake now.

We are not your beloved Felix, but we are his friends. Felix wishes to see you again. He wants you join him in the land of Lemuria. Others have done so before you. You just have to follow your fish.

The creature crawls between the pages of a book whose spine reads Weyer and Liber Officiorum Spirituum. Mmm. A book titled Book of Spiritual Works cannot be too bad. The fish opens the book to:

    Vepar, alias Separ, Dux magnus & fortis: Similis syreni: Ductor est aquarum & navium armis onustarum. Ut mare jussu magistri turgidum navibusque plenum appareat, efficit: contra inimicos exorcistæ per dies tres vulneribus putrescentibus vermesque producentibus homines inficit, à quibus tamen negotio absoluto sanantur omnes.

So much Latin gives me a headache. So, “Vepar, aka Separ, magnanimous and strong overlord, similar to mermaids, commands the seas and the armored, sailing navies. At the command of his master, he makes the sea…turbulent (?), full of ship…apparitions (?). To kill men, he only takes three days.” (Only!) Difficult to keep reading. So, “something, something” about exorcists, “whose wounds he putrefies with maggots.” The author adds the wounds can be healed.

See, all your pain shall be healed.

All over the floor, fish drool, or rather, urinate. Gravity pulls down the liquid and drains it into a shallow pool. I stare until the fish between Weyer’s pages opens its mouth and pukes a…lamprey! The newborn parasitic eel imitates its mother and opens wide its toothed, funnel-like, sucking mouth. Yet, instead of vomiting, it bares its fangs and jumps into my left hand, puncturing my skin. I grab the disgusting fish-worm by its tail, but it slips away towards the puddle. Bloody pus oozes out of my wound.

Wash your wounds in this holy water.

Hesitating, I immerse my trembling hand into the foul-smelling pool. The pain subsides. Feels like oxygenated water when it fizzes on your skin. Its effervescence brings to the surface tiny bubbles which hiss when touching dry skin. As the brine seeps into my blood, it reveals that the bubbles consist of memories, a homeopathy of histories. Adopting the ancient method by which homeopathic alchemists elaborate watery remedies, the constant dissolution of herbs until nothing but the memory of the solute remains, ancestral sea creatures produce brine so as to preserve those memories of Atlantis and Lemuria threatened by human amnesia. The Atlantic and Indic Oceans were one once. They both occupied the same spatial and temporal locations until the conjunction of shifting tectonic plates with serendipitous chronological structures distanced them into distinct historical-planetary sectors. Only when future stars are right will archaeologists, to their horror, see that the Atlantic ruined roads and walls belong to a Lemurian civilization awakening from its disturbed somnolence. Plato, that unrepentant Grecophile of the past, baptized Lemuria with the name Αtlas, the cyclopean titan who led a rebellion against the celestial divinities and attempted to usurp the throne of the Eldest god. The Elder gods suppressed the rebels, and the Eldest, Zeus, cursed the Titan thus: “Henceforth you shall be named Ατλασ, for you will need to become Endurance to bear upon your shoulders the heavenly spheres you so coveted.” Afterward, as narrated by Plato, the primordial Atlantis-Lemuria, “suffered excessively violent earthquakes and floods. And after the onset of an unbearable day and a night, its entire warrior force sank below the earth all at once, and the Land of Atlantis likewise sunk below the sea and disappeared, and made the ocean in the region unnavigable and unexplorable.”

Since Lemurian seawater granted me the gift of tongues, I am now able to read aloud from the Book of Monsters:

    Imo fuit Cham filius Noë, qui primus post diluvium cœpit malignos invocare spiritus, invocavit autem Byleth, & composuit artem in suo nomine, & librum, qui multis mathematicis et exorcistis est cognitus. Fiebant autem holocausta, libamina…

“In the beginning, necromancers offered sacrifices and burnt offerings unto him. To call him up, they exercised an art, saying that Solomon the Wise made it. False! It was Cham, Noah’s son, the first among the survivors of the Flood to invocate the spirits. He conjured B’l’th, and made an art in his name, and wrote a book, known only to mathemagicians and exorcists.” It is these mathemagicians and exorcists of whom Plato wrote: “they created dwellings astonishing in its size. Starting at the sea, they excavated panels three hundred stadia in depth, and fifty stadia in length up to the outermost sea, making water trickle down a channel wide enough for the largest ships to pass through its harbor. The walls surrounding the Acropolis they invested with black aurichalcum, which made them glitter like darting fire.” I close the book and…behold!

Though dazzled by the black aurichalcum’s brilliant darkness, my vehement gaze ascends the Cyclopean ruins of Lemuria. Once the prison of a Titan, now a resplendent fortress. At its highest peak lies a golden aurichalcum bowl. Within it, my beloved Felix, now Felicitous, the Joyous One, revels in manic dreams. For, as foretold by ancient Sanskrit texts: That is not dead which can eternal lie; and with strange Kali-Yuga cycles even death may die.

Then, to my horror, I watch as Lemuria’s dream-image slowly dissolves in the sea mist.

WHY!? – I ask the fish, who ululate the answer:

You need to accelerate the process before it is too late.

My already-healed wound reopens. It oozes again yellowish-greenish pus, which turns into a darker hue and slowly mixes into the brine.

Drink it!

I pour the mixture in my healthy hand and imbibe the concoction, summoning all my strength so as not to vomit it along with my entrails. I hear a distant voice calling my name from deep beneath the sea. Juaanqui! The brine permeates my outer skin first, then my intestinal interior skin. I walk towards the wine-dark sea. Rosy-fingered dawn walks not far behind me. Everyone I meet across my path looks askance at me, their paranoid glances revealing their disgust at my mutated exterior skin. Ignorants. Never, never reject someone because of their deformity or appearance! Diseased skin is nothing but a sign of an inner transformation of the soul becoming a more spiritual essence. A festive procession of fish accompanies me, not gliding through the air, but sloppily slithering through the sand, rejoicing every time my feet and their fins splash those puddles left behind earlier by the receding foam. The shore’s froth recedes. Now left behind, not puddles, but a decrepit treasure chest snatched from the claws of some pirate cursed to breath forever under the Wide Sargasso Sea.

Behold your seaworthy vessel!

Though I barely fit within the Lemurian handicraft, I step into it. A sudden gust of claustrophobia hits me when it closes, making a noise similar to the one made by a closing latch. Yet, the fear subsides when the swaying of the sea transmogrifies, first the treasure chest into a rock-a-bye crib, and then the bat’s chirping into a lullaby, a lullaby no one alive has ever heard before. Soon, I will obliterate from my mind the alarmed voice telling me water is coming inside and be able to depart towards Felicitous and the land of Lemuria, where we shall dwell amidst wonder and glory!

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Juan Carlos Marín

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Sent September 24 at 8:01 am:

RAMON AGUILAR Where the hell are you?

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Posted September 25 at 7:23 am:

Student at Fr. Francis Xavier’s prep school disappears

According to police reports, Juan Carlos Marín was last seen yesterday morning coming out of the school’s library. Times of India interviewed a Jesuit who teaches at the school. Fr. Niels Amundsen believes Mr. Marín spent the night reading a book titled Book of Spirit Office Holders, also known as Pseudo-Monarchy of Demons. Some neighbours claim to have seen reddish-brown puddles and dead bodies found at his apartment, but police do not suspect foul activity. Lab results showed the mysterious liquid contained nothing but seawater and some blood belonging to several dead bats lying on the floor.


Juan Miguel Marin is a candidate for the Doctor of Theology degree at Harvard University. He specializes in the history of mysticism and gender/sexuality studies. His latest articles have appeared in the Journal of Men, Masculinities, and Spiritualities; the Harvard Theological Review; and the European Journal of Physics. His mother and grandmother raised him in Puerto Rico together with chickens, two rabbits, a dog, a cat, a little brother, a black goldfish, and several bats in the walls.